(I can’t believe that I had actually forgotten about Xena, Warrior Princess for a few years. Never again!!)
Do you recognize yourself in this? The warrior who fights for everyone else but herself?
We rage at our schools, our daycares and our camps to demand better treatment, better food, better playgrounds, better resources for our kids.
We join petitions and send emails to complain about neighbourhood hazards.
We rally around our friends who are in the worst kind of tragedy…or lost…or broken apart. We bring food, organize phone calls, make special trips.
We bend over backwards to create space and time for our partners to succeed at business or a new job or a new passion.
We fight for our friends’ birthdays, anniversaries, celebrations. We bring the flowers, the snacks, the wine, the champagne. We offer the house, the cottage; we offer to host, to make the dinner, to bring the bagels and cream cheese.
We say “yes” to other people’s requests by saying “no” to what we want.
I need to write this one down again because it has made me stop and shiver…We say “yes” to other people’s requests by saying “no” to what we want.
We are fierce warriors for so many people in our lives. And yet, we can be meek and mild when it comes to fighting for our own lives. (Perhaps waiting for our husbands, jobs, children or success to step in and do it for us.)
What I’m talking about is the challenge we face to be our own rescuers and our own heroes. To be the warrior that fights for what we need to live our lives as fully and as gloriously as possible – led by our own truth and our own desires.
This world labels women as natural caretakers, except, it really means care taking of other people. The message we get as wives, girlfriends, mothers and daughters is that our gift lies in our inherent ability to nourish and nurture other people. To keep them fed, warm, loved and comfortable. And yes, that is one of the most beautiful and warrior-like things about women. We are fierce about taking care of people we love. (And lukewarm on taking care of people we are supposed to take care of…)
We can’t fit in the gym but all our kids are in activities. We don’t cook the food we really want to eat because we are preparing meals that someone else likes. We act as though our time belongs to the general public, instead of something that is ours to claim and name. We choose the restaurant that the date loves instead of the one we love.
And how is this working for us? You tell me.
But there is another way. For any woman who has heard the whisper “This is not enough for me”, she must step into her warrior. And this is not easy work. It is easier to play the victim, become bitter and stay stuck. The warrior must carve our her own rules, her own way and be loyal to her truth above all. But the most difficult thing she must do is to bravely face her own judgement of what it means to be a good mother, a good wife and a good woman.
If we believe that being a good mother/wife/woman means dedicating our lives to serving others (with the hope that their happiness will become our happiness), then stifling our warrior-selves from working on our own behalf fits well.
But if we believe that being a good mother/wife/woman/creator/world-changer/friend/mentor/artist/entrepreneur/role-model/wise elder requires that we do everything we can to love ourselves, take care of ourselves, make our happiness a priority and honour our truth, then our warrior-selves must battle on our own behalf as well.
If becoming a warrior for yourself is something you’d like to experiment with this year, please join me at my Body Love retreat on Feb. 11th, 2017. This is a full day of embodied experience where we begin to bypass the brain and learn from the wisdom of the body. Where we hear our own truth and feel the courage to honour it in our own lives.
Where we shine our warrior lights on our own lives.
Read the description and register here. Registration ends on Feb. 3rd so if this is calling to you, don’t let it slip away.
In the comments below, I’d love to hear your thoughts and feelings on what it is to be a warrior in your life…for yourself or for other people.