I have a few ongoing group texts with friends…my daily lifelines. There is My Girlies!!! (college ladies); ChrisAnn Mary Diane (girls from Douglaston); Noeeeelllllleeeee, (public school bestie); and Pville Ladies: where any thread is the right thread (Pleasantville crew). There are college groups and family threads…but my lady threads are the ones that keep me sane.
Today I heard the symphony of beeps…an alert that someone created something, did pushups correctly, shared an article, was being supportive, or was just sending love on this bright crisp day. What I saw was a delicious memory that had popped up on a friend’s FB feed. A life-changing trip to Boston to support one of our daughters. Five women of a certain age watching a performance by talented and daring young women…a show about embracing, learning about, and loving…our vaginas.
Vagina, basement region, wa-zoo, hoohah, the purse, girl business…all names I have used for my vagina. The magical vagina, it is so complex it needs a million names. I am not into the nasty ones, or referring to my lady parts as animals, when I hear those terms I assume a man is speaking. Someone who fears their magic. Fear. When I called my mom minutes after our Olivia was born I said, mom, it’s a girl. After screaming in delight she said “you know Kat, with a boy you only need to worry about ONE penis, but with a daughter you need to worry about EVERY penis”, sigh. Fear. One should not need to fear for their newly born daughters body parts.
Young women today seem to speak openly of their hardships, challenges, and abuses… much more than my generation did at their age. They celebrate their gifts with no apologies. They express themselves through writing, art, and performance, no waiting in the wings. The production of The Vagina Monologues we saw at Boston College that weekend was produced and performed by a remarkable group of young women…to them a show…but to us, so daring. We listened, we reflected, we learned, and we admired their honesty. We felt their pain and we celebrated their joy. There was not a dry eye in the house as they took their bows. The few men in the audience applauded their daughters through their tears…and their worst fears. We stood frozen, in awe of goodness we had just received, with a new appreciation of our super powers…powers that we always had but needed to be reintroduced to.
I walked away that night owning my body…my beautiful body that I can be so harsh on. The body that housed my babies for nine months, just us. My body that dances, hugs, and can stand so much taller than its actual measurement. The body that cares for so many. We can learn so much from the younger generation…we just need to listen.
I am so grateful for the incredible women in my life. Swoon.