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Week in Review: The Week of the Woman

One of my go-to topics of conversation that pops up around my second or third bevvy is the whole feminine/masculine debate. Like, someone might say, “Oh that guy is super feminine–I wonder if he’s gay?” or “That girl is such a tomboy because she dresses so masculine.” And what I like to do, wine in hand or not, is break open people’s minds a bit. Stretch them. It sounds slutty, but it’s not. It’s just me.

If you think I made a mistake with that last line, you’re wrong. I’m just that good of a writer.

My take on it is that nobody has to make a decision and say “Oh hey, I’m a 6 on the feminine scale.” No no no! Okay, wait. I already wrote about this, and I’ll link it up here, and OMG I used to be WAY FUNNIER. What happened? My writing now is LAME AND BORING.

Anyway. I used to be a bit of a man-hater, so I went through this phase where I thought I was a lesbian (leaving out details because my dad reads this), but I’m not, but you can see the picture I’m trying to paint here. I adore women. I love being female. If I got stuck out of my body and saw myself being born with a penis, I’d be really disappointed.

This is supposed to be a Week in Review, hosted by a woman, of course, Meghan from Clean Eats Fast Feets, and so I should probably just write about my week.

Nicole @thegirlwhoraneverywhere posted a treadmill workout and because she’s a bit of an idol of mine, I decided to give her workout a try. I frigging nailed it. But I never would have tried it if I hadn’t first read her post. Women are strong, and inspiring, and hot damn, they’re fast.

I’ve mentioned Marybeth a few times on my blog and that woman’s writing has never ceased to blow my mind. I’m not sure how I scored this, but I get weekly emails from her (I took a course of hers several months ago, so maybe I still get stuff?) and this morning’s piece was ground-breaking. But this was her Instagram post from the middle of the week:

I used to read Denise‘s blog years ago. I think I may have stumbled upon her space when we both had our dreadlocks. You know how there are some people that just soar above the others? Her spirit, her Self, is something just out of this world. She isn’t a person–she’s an experience. I opened up to her, just through messaging, and she held my heart in my words and nurtured me in the way I needed Her most. I am so grateful.

And Kristen, who I went to high school with but only recently became close friends with right after Callum was born, took in my pain too and stood beside me like a warrior, a warrior with a soft inside, you know? A safe love that will fight for me but when I close my eyes, I know won’t fight against me.

I listened to Ali on the Run’s podcast and she interviewed a model, and they talked a lot about self-image and the physicality of being a woman and it just felt like bread and butter to my soul. Their calming conversation settled into my hips and centered my spine like a good shag and a cigarette.

The other night I lay in bed and had a good cry. It was one of those cries that you just know are planting seeds somewhere. Somewhere green, and damp, with bits of sunlight, just enough to nurture without scorching the edges. And while I cried, Andrew rubbed my back but honestly, all I craved, all I imagined, all I needed was to be inside a circle of a tribe of women, faces smudged with the pains of labour, not just childbirth but of lovebirth, the sacrifices that come with femininity, of nurturing the undeserving, with grace and relentless hope and unfailing love.

Katie and I headed over to my sister Lori’s house because they adopted sister cats. My niece had them locked in her room, safe, in predictable surroundings and they settled there, purring and twirling in her lap. I let the girls be and headed to the kitchen to make myself a coffee and I curled up into Lori’s oversized armchair, an Adele book on her table, birds outside the window, and I thought holy shit. Lori’s life is chaotic, but she knows enough to put a chair here, with Adele, and the birds, and she knows that heaven isn’t up there in some unreachable, untouchable place–it’s in the middle of the storm if you squat down and lean into it. It’s right here.

Do you think of a woman when you think of femininity?

List off some descriptive words that come to mind when you think of Woman. Are they stereotypical? Why or why not?

If it’s 5am where you are right now and you’re thinking “For godssake Suzy, don’t ask me questions like this before I drink my coffee,” then I’ll let you break the rules a bit just this once. But you have to tell me if you’ve had your morning poo yet: yes or no?





{ 15 comments… add one }
  • Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets March 20, 2017, 11:54 am

    It’s weird you mention this because I’ve been on a pronoun/gender kick lately. I also just finished a book all about sexual explorations of transgendered and bisexual folks.

    When I think women, I think strong, powerful, united, empathetic and able to run the world, just to name a few.

    I love the pussy cats, tails entwined and everything.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com March 20, 2017, 2:00 pm

      Are their tails entwined?!?! AWE!!! I just noticed that. SO CUTE. I think they’re strong, powerful, united, empathetic and able to run the world. Cats are already at the top anyway, so not surprising.

  • Ana March 20, 2017, 1:00 pm

    I used to have a co-worker who had very outdated ideas of the roles of males and females. It used to drive me crazy!! She used to tell me that women could not be strong that we had to be feminine and stay attractive. She used to constantly harass me about wearing make up, and needing a total make over. Whenever she would tell me I needed a make over, I would respond with “No, I need to run faster and stronger”, and she would screech and squeal that I didn’t need muscles, that a woman doesn’t need muscles. ugh!!

    I could talk about my opposition to fit roles preset on us… because that has been me most of my life…. but I don’t want to bore you! Bottom line, I don’t believe on them. Vaginas make female, Penis make male. What we chose to wear, act, eat, where we pee, poo, is all up to the individuals. At the end of the day we are just humans, trying to survive this life without any major scratches.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com March 20, 2017, 1:58 pm

      Totally agree! That co-worker of yours would drive me crazy. ARRGGHHHH. I mean, to each their own, but no need for her to get preachy about it.

  • Megan @ Meg Go Run March 20, 2017, 1:38 pm

    Omg look at those kitties!!! 🙂

    When I think of a woman, I think of strong, determined, and someone who can GET. SHIT. DONE.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com March 20, 2017, 1:57 pm

      They’re SO CUTE. And yes! I love your take on a woman!

  • Susie @ Suzlyfe March 21, 2017, 3:55 am

    Right now… I don’t know how I feel. I am currently unable to fulfill my biological role as a woman, yet the only thing I want to be is a mother. Everything else right now pales in comparison. Right now this is a hard question for me to answer.
    I don’t necessarily think woman/femininity, but that could be because I rarely see myself as a typical woman.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com March 21, 2017, 10:48 am

      The seemingly interchangeable roles of woman and mother would be extremely difficult for someone struggling with infertility. I can’t help but to admit that I felt the most womanly when I had extra body fat after I had Freddy. My breasts were gigantic and leaking, my belly was squishy and my thighs rubbed together but I felt super sexy. Womanly. Feminine. And then when I was 117 lb or whatever, I felt masculine. Like a 10 year old boy. And it’s MY fault for conforming to society my perception of what it means to be womanly!

  • Laura @ This Runner's Recipes March 21, 2017, 8:15 am

    One of my areas of interest in grad school was the development of the “feminine genius” through the history of Western Christian thought. It was feminine in a non-stereotypical sense – strong, outspoken, discerning, wise, perceptive, empathic, loving. I love that idea of feminity – not the dainty, vain, submissive notion that some people have.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com March 21, 2017, 10:43 am

      Feminine genius. Not just any genius, but a feminine one. I love it. I’d love to see a painting of that concept. It would be fascinating to see people’s individual perception of what that means and what it looks like.

  • Helly on the Run March 21, 2017, 11:12 am

    I’m a lot like you in that I really like women. I like looking at them, admiring them inside and out, wanting to know what they’re thinking….

    But at the same time, they complicate me. I’ve never been able to have *good* women friends. I’ve always wanted a “best friend,” someone who I can go to when I need help, advice, love. But I’ve never found it. It could very well be me, lol!

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com March 21, 2017, 2:20 pm

      See, I wish I could drink wine right now because I’d give such a kickass response to this comment. Instead, I’ll give you a long and lingering hug when I see you next month! XO

  • Melissa April 2, 2017, 10:29 pm

    I’ve been in a dry season of life, starved of everything that used to make me bleed with color. I’m in a failing marriage withe a failing body and a writer’s mind that feels trapped inside. My condition is terminal, but it feels like child’s play compared to being trapped in a soul and spirit that feels like it’s shriveling up inside. I drove into the sunset tonight (literally) and wished I could cry. Though all the treatments and losing my home and hair and cat and job, there have been minimal tears. Minimal connection. I tried to think of places I could go that would feel good. I thought of your blog. Your beautiful, raw, real blog, and I had no idea you’re pregnant! Ah! Congrats you fierce beautiful mama. So here I am reading back, and your words are like fucking lubricant to my soul. In the middle of this post, I opened gmail and wrote a draft to myself. Gutting myself open a bit, the first time through this whole process. I still haven’t cried, but damn you make me feel things. I screenshotted your post about loving your body and the softness spilling over the back of your waistband. Magical bodies worthy of an extra boob squeeze and TLC. Yes! I saved to send to my sister. You are one of those woman warriors for me, and I’m off to continue reading back to where I last left off at Christmas. Thank you for sharing yourself with us. We may never know our imprints, but yours are raw and real. Thank you for being here. ♡

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com April 3, 2017, 7:26 am

      Melissa, I have a quote I had written down in my notes section, and although I Googled it, I can’t figure out where this quote is from. DAMMIT. But, it’s for you:

      “That ink flowing to the blank pages of that book was my lifeline. My IV. My only escape from collapsing. In that moment I understood something about my writer husband that I had never understood before. I had a small glimpse into the act of writing something down as a direct, very viable escape from pain. I had no desire to publish this writing. I wasn’t thinking about an audience. I just needed to do it or else I’d weep and not be able to stop weeping.”

      • Melissa April 3, 2017, 10:18 am


        You know, and you get it.

        Thank you, thank you…♡…

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