As women we are shaped from the minute we leave our mothers womb into believing that we exist for other's pleasure. As baby girls, we are told how beautiful we are. Boys are told how powerful they can be. Our parents are tricked into thinking that we must be defined as pink or blue with specific roles related to each. Dolls, cars, kitchen sets and superheroes all supposedly fall into either side of the spectrum.
We are told that "boys will be boys" when they touch us in ways we don't like on the playground. We are told that we're bossy if we take leadership. We are tall poppies cut down before we even have a chance to grow.
We are pushed, prodded and moulded into being society's concept of a "cool girl" who takes no issue with anything that makes her feel lesser as a person, made to laugh off situations that make her uncomfortable.
This archetypal concept of women and what we are and what we are allowed to be is not harmonious with the path that we are meant to take. A tree will grow toward the light, and so should we. The fire in our bellies tells us we should be bold, challenge ideas, own our bodies and be proud of them. To take our sexuality by the reins and to not be apologetic for it. To be all that we can and want to be. We are not delicate china figurines to be placed on a decorative shelf.
Something I'm sure you've heard of by now is the #metoo campaign. For those of you who may be unaware- it's a social media hashtag circulating where women have been sharing their stories of sexual harassment, or worse, assault.
The thing is, I don't know one single woman who hasn't experienced the above.
The severity and frequency vary but every woman on this planet has an ever growing list of stories that send anger to my bones and shivers down my spine.
Victim blaming is something that can be traced back to an age where we were still learning the alphabet -
"Did you say something to stir him up?"
"You do look really pretty today"
"That skirt is a little short"
"He's only mean to you because he likes you"
This comes back to the toxic idea that boys will be boys, and girls must have been distracting them. It comes back to the idea that we exist to be looked at, to serve our male counterparts.
If we are to connect to our true life's purpose, and to achieve higher consciousness - society as a whole needs to start supporting girls on their journey to becoming strong women.
So here's a shoutout to women. To our daughters, our sisters, mothers, grandmothers and those who have paved the path before us - Thank you. Our ability to keep growing after we are cut is not overlooked.
To men who support us. Who water us and move us into the light - we appreciate you. We need you.
We are rivers, continuously moving, ever changing in our ebbs and flows- and we will not stop for stones.