In one of my very first relationships, I dated a man nearly 10 years my senior. To me, no one could be wiser than him. He would often call me “Lady” because, according to him, “anyone can be a woman, but it takes a special class of woman to be a lady.” It was that relationship that helped define who I would become as I matured as it lasted nearly a decade. I realize today that the lady I am is strengthened by the woman that I am.
As I cruise around various social media sites and read posts made by my peers, I see a lot of examples of people hating on each other and trying to make oneself better than others, the “one-up game”. They find out one little speck of dirt about you or your past and they blow it up into Drama World War Kazillion. I know with my mental illnesses I have a superiority complex, but at least I recognize it and try my best to keep it under control and remember that I’m just a speck of dirt on this rock floating in space. When I am confronted by people with this need to be better than their fellow man I get aggravated by their haughty high and mighty attitude and I try to keep my dealings with them civil. Yet, every so often, I feel like I’m backed into a corner with this pious attitude and they will say something that just finally lights the fuse. And that’s when the smart-ass, Irish ginger, ADHD driven, addicted to learning, pay it forward always to those who deserve, kiss my ass bitch comes out in me.
See, I know that that sounds ridiculously pompous of myself. But I have always held the belief that if it is in my power to help others, then I need to do so. I pay it forward as a way of saying thank you to those who have helped me in the past, especially those who never even knew me. And I’m a firm believer in karma, what you put out into the universe is what is going to come back to you. There’s nothing really cosmic about it when you think about it truthfully. Just the way things should be. I don’t go around bragging about the things I’ve done, good or bad. I talk about them, yes, but it’s most likely because it’s relevant to what is being said. I don’t like to bring attention to myself in such a way but there has been times that I have exploded and “bitch-slapped” someone with proof of my “good deeds”. I back my stuff up. When I’m wrong, I admit it. I do make apologies to people when I am wrong (though many will tell you that it’s not easy to get me to say “I’m sorry” but they know that I’m apologizing the best I can) and I don’t lie to people because I completely believe that the act of lying hurts worse than the lie itself.
I saw a meme some time ago that said something along the lines of a “real woman uplifts other women and does not berate them”. That’s a tough one for me. I am a cynical person, and as I often tell people who are not use to dealing with me on a day to day basis, I have a very acidic tongue. But if people get past the acidity in my tone and listen to the words and what I am saying, they see that I am also explaining and teaching while doing so. When I was younger we called that “constructive criticism”. I have been working on that acidity lately more than I ever did before because not all of my friends can see that that’s just what I’m used to in my life – straight forward real talk, no sugar coating. Nearly 40 years old and I feel like I’m learning how to socialize with the neighborhood kids again.
I try to teach by example to others. With my chaotic mind, I’m sure that that’s a joy. People always want me to share my recipes or teach them how to make certain dishes. Okay, well while I’m showing them, I’m explaining things of why I’m doing certain things a certain way. I’ve learned how to cook and bake from some wonderful cooks in my life and I’ve employed everything that they taught me and people are always telling me how wonderful my food is. I use this as an example of how I try to always be teaching others. And I love to have the roles reversed as well. A good teacher is always another teacher’s student.
So I guess to me, what defines a woman is who she is on the inside, the woman that her closest friends see.
And with that, I bid you goodnight.