It takes faith to be a woman. Whether married or single; a mother or not; a lover and/or friend; self-employed, other-employed, or unemployed; a home owner or renter; physically fit or out of shape; old(er) or young(er); extroverted or introverted; religious/spiritual or atheist/agnostic; sister, cousin, aunt, daughter. Each of these requires something more of us, takes something more from us, and calls forth something more in us.
This is not the Faith of our Fathers: a rock-solid, immovable system of belief in a male god, a hierarchical church, a patriarchal theology and all the tenets therein.
This is the faith of our Mothers: oft’ unknown and unnamed by them, but ours to carry, to name, to memorialize, to grieve, and to heal. This is a faith that is fluid, highly adaptable, feminine, and grounded in a belief in self.
This is a woman who knows, relies on, and makes her substance known/seen in every realm – living out loud in unconscious, gracious, natural ways. A woman who understands her power, her presence, her passion. A woman who imbues life and wisdom in every conversation and relationship. A woman who gives a resounding, “Yes!” to all things beautiful , tender, vulnerable, courageous, and justice-focused.
A woman who risks everything for what/who she loves. A woman who sacrifices and suffers much on behalf of her own heart and the hearts of others. A woman who can see the impact and ramification of her words, her thoughts, her actions and chooses integrity, compassion, and generosity at every turn.
A woman who extends herself and others grace. Who does not hide in places of shame or silence; rather, can and will acknowledge her goodness (sometimes fleeting and floundering, other times bold and amazing) and her truest voice. A woman who knows patience – with self and with others.
A woman who is real. Afraid. Tentative. Hopeful. Dangerous. Weighing. Balancing. Walking a tightrope. Hanging on by a thread. Loving with abandon. Getting burned. Making mistakes. Achieving greatness one moment at a time. Believing in herself. Laughing. Weeping. Comforting. Knowing. Holding.
The Sacred Feminine with flesh. The power, knowledge, and beauty of the ages woven into her heart, her mind, her soul. Undaunted. The goddess within. Not an entity outside ourselves in which we place our belief, our trust, our hope. She is seen and experienced in a strength, a power, a beauty we know in our bones – even if only faintly – as an echo, a whisper, a breeze. This knowing, this belief, this faith is intuitive, resonant, and wholly ours. We imbibe it/her. We inhabit it/her. And she inhabits us.
Have faith, woman. She is here.
In Me. In You.
This post originally appeared in June, 2012 when I had the privilege of being part of the Summer Tribe at Roots of She.