So more than a few months back I recall my partner commenting generally on a married woman that we both know and like. He said something along the lines of “that’s a real woman.”. I agreed. She is generally successful. She is beautiful. She has self confidence that is hard to ignore. She has many wonderful qualities. It took me about one minute to take that statement to heart. But it took me until recently to really reflect on it. In that same conversation he straight-forwardly alluded to himself not seeing me in the same light. That he saw me as more of a girl than a woman. I didn’t want an argument to unnecessarily come of this conversation so I didn’t say much to this. I didn’t realize how deeply that hurt me until much later. I thought to myself; how could anyone in their late 20’s be in love with someone who they didn’t view as a “real” woman. Does this mean that the love he feels is illegitimate and will some day pass if I don’t “grow up”? Does this make me a “girl” and not a “woman”? Well ever since that conversation I’ve taken notice of other “women”, trying to gauge whether someone is (to me) a woman or a girl. There are a lot of varying factors that I used to make that decision. I spent a lot of my time and energy judging other womens actions and speech and attitudes and so on. I created arguments between my partner and I because I was dwelling on wanting to seem like a “real woman” to him. I aspired too much to be what he considered such. After much thought and reflection I came the conclusion that wasting my time judging others was making me more of a “girl” than a “woman” in the way that I myself independently aspired to be. He made me question my womanhood. But I let it become a more serious issue, rather than a question to spark self-reflection. I don’t have my life entirely figured out. I’m still learning who I am with each new challenge I face. Girl, woman…I’m making decisions based on the type of person I am. You can’t make decisions based on an idea of what one person thinks of as womanly and developed, or young and girlie. I won’t set aside the standards I hold for myself based on others opinions or actions. Living through the process of figuring life out does not make you more or less of a woman (or a person for that matter).
Amazing cover by Kate Davis. “All about that [upright] bass”. Love this. Can’t stop listening.