Friday, October 23, 2009

Sista's Got Your Back

My second summer in Poland, I returned to some pretty great friends I'd made in Lublin twelve months before. I was super pleased that I was able to communicate in their native language better, but imagine my surprise and delight when my friend Sylwia told me she'd been teaching our friend Beata some English. My first summer, Beata and I were pretty much communicating via facial expression, warm embraces, and very simple phrases on my part. But it wasn't long before I realized Sylwia was teaching her some funny, but not entirely useful phrases. On cue, Beata started parroting, "Men. Men. I love men. Big men. Sexy men. I love men!"

I love men too. No joke. So, so much. But with that said, I'd never want to be one.

Being a woman is super for so many reasons-- being and making things beautiful, offering our hands for peace and healing, our nurturing natures, our ability to do a million things at once, etc., etc. I'm sure I could go on all day about the pleasure of being female, but I've got insulation work to finish and a craft fair to prepare for (yikes! Don't know how I'm gonna pull this off, but I'm excited). But one of the coolest things are our friendships with other women. When women grow up and get past cattiness and territorialism, they can fill so many voids. I love my gals!

And what exactly triggered this love outpouring?

I don't know. Maybe it was talking to my friend about her driving a really ridiculous dude out of her life. I'm proud of her. I gave her the empowering "you go girl" speech, but I felt like I was speaking to women everywhere. If brotha is treating you like garbage, kick HIM to the curb, am I right?

Or maybe it was thinking about my cousin's wife, who completely cracks me up. My cousin Justin is one of my favorite people in the entire world, and no one can make me laugh as much. Of course, he's plenty abusive to me, in that he'll grab me by the wrists and make me feel his chest hair, or he'll throw me over his shoulder and spin me in the air, WWE-style. His wife HATES this. When Justin acts up, Janalee always tells Justin to get a life. Sometimes, I think he's extra naughty with company around just to get Janalee to say it. And, though I'd never do anything to purposely irritate her, I get such a kick out of it when she starts modifying the phrase in exasperation. "Yes, Justin, get a life. Get like, the biggest life ever." She's so awesome. Also, when I'm begging for mercy, trying to get released from Justin the tickle monster, Janalee will come over and beat on him to get him off of me. She's never abusive, but thank goodness she's there, otherwise I'd probably pee all over their couch or something. I love that Janalee.

And there are other great women in my life as well. I look at my sister-in-law with her two darling girls, who are sometimes at least as difficult as they are beautiful. But she's a great mom. My little sister is so driven and hard-working, I worry she'll never take a break, but she's accomplishing so much and running circles around most girls her age. She's so graceful and beautiful and fun.

Unfortunately, I don't have time to pay adequate tribute to all the angelic (Mom), creative (Sylvia and Debra), brilliant and spiritual (Amber), compassionate (Van Time Girls) women in my life. But I'm blessed to know so many good women-- to emulate them, to learn from them, and to laugh with them. Someone cue the soundtrack from "Flower Drum Song" because I enjoy being a girl.


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