top of page
  • Lotus Magazine MC

yours truly, elizabeth

“God, I love being a woman”.


It’s the sound that floods my phone, along with dozens of coffee cups on nightstands and jewelry on the floor. It’s the representation of the other side of femininity.


When society looks at women, they see us as a “final product”. Heels on, hair done, face made. They see the woman giving a presentation in front of the entire room, with everything perfectly prepared. The ones that put together amazing projects and events, still while having perfect grades and an amazing presence everywhere they go.


Then there’s the other side, the side that I’m currently struggling with. The side that overproduces because of the need for a perfect life and image, while being an internal dumpster fire.


This semester has been one of the more difficult ones for me. While I am the happiest I have ever been in terms of my life, relationships, and success, I seem to be in a bit over my head. Typically, I am very skilled in keeping the two sides of me separate: one for the people and one for myself. No matter how much was on my plate, including school, two jobs, multiple leadership positions, and just being a good friend and family member, I was always able to function. I told myself I was better with a busy schedule, and I genuinely am the type that wants to be the best in everything I do and experience as much as I can out of the world. I told myself that no matter how much I do, and how much of myself I sacrifice, it would all be worth it in the end and I would be better for it.


However, it seems I have pushed myself too far on one end, and it is turning into quite a mess on the other end. Instead of just a messy room, I have a messy mind. Falling asleep in class, forgetting things at work, and not even allowing a thought for necessary variables like food has consumed me. I did not want to miss out on any aspect of my life so much, that it has now affected all of them. I am not the best version of myself.


The thing that has made me feel significantly less alone during this struggle is knowing that other women feel this too. All over social media, college-age girls have been posting about how much more difficult the Spring semester of college is in a mental aspect. How much it has been defeating them. Are we finally exhausted from everything the world is asking of us? Are we tired of the responsibilities we have put on ourselves?


When talking about this, one can easily tell me that I can lay low for a bit and defer a few of my responsibilities, and learn to delegate. They might even mention how no one asked me to do “all of this”.


Except they did.


The world asked this of women when they tried to boil us down into a single position of caretaker. They did it again when they said it is ok to be more than that, as long as we are both caretakers and laborers. They did it again when they agreed it was ok to be more than that, as long as we were all caretakers, laborers, AND leaders. The list goes on


The world holds us to this standard to this day when it expects us to be extremely empathetic friend, who fully provides for themselves, themselves while being successful in everything they do. And truth is, I love being all these things. Women ARE all of these things. However, we are supposed to be it on our own terms.


We should love having the opportunity to be anything and everything we have ever wanted to be, but not at the cost of ourselves. Eventually, if we, including myself, do not start taking our own well-being into account, it seeps into everything we do. We can no longer be the emotional support friend or the star student our teachers depend on. This is a situation in which both women and the world lose.


I am not gonna sit here and write out all the ways in which I am going to start taking care of myself and putting myself first. Truth is, I will stick with some actions, and ditch others within a two-day span. I do not have all the answers to what the perfect balance for life is. What I do know, however, is women will always figure it out.


Eventually, we all give our room a deep clean, get our hair cut, and buy a new face wash. Eventually, we take that self-care day. Eventually, we reconnect with friends. And when we do, the people that will get us back on track are women, including ourselves. Nobody knows better how to reclaim their lives than fellow women holding their heads high beside us.


We can only learn to appreciate and embrace the messiness. Accept that part of it will always be prevalent in our lives, but that we get to decide how much it is.


I would love to certify the fact that I will have a “happy ending”, but I do not have the means to do so. All I do know is through it all, I am happy. I will continue to figure myself out, just like all the women before me, and all the women after me whom I will hopefully inspire.


While being female may raise issues that we should not have to deal with within this world of men, I would not trade it for the world. Being female is divine. The sound of my heels announcing my presence somewhere, coupled with the frantic placement of shoes all over my friend’s room before we have left, is what makes me who I am. It is what makes us who we are.


Because I love who I am, I love being a woman, and I love being alive.


Yours Truly,

elizabeth

Comments


bottom of page