Friday, April 24, 2015

A "Broken" Feminine Genius

About a week and a half ago, Pope Francis spoke on the subject of the differences (and the sameness) of men and women. You can read about it here, but it made me get something in my eye.

You see, for a very long time, I have been thinking about the term "Feminine Genius" and how I see it in me. It came to a head when I read Momnipotent. The struggle for me centers on this totally made up but not really made up conversation.

Friend: Yeah! Feminine Genius rocks! Women are awesome.
Another Friend: What is 'feminine genius'?
Friend: It encompasses all the things women are great at: their natural abilities.
Another Friend: Cool. Like what?
Friend: Oh, you know. Like child birth, breast feeding, NURTURING.

Then I pull my hair out. Four c-sections right here, and while I can probably squirt a bowling pin down from across the room with my incredible milk supply, I stink at nurturing. To hear ad nauseam that women are good and womanly things like NURTURING, and emotions, and feelings, and NURTURING is really sort of depressing (wait. That's a feeling, right?) when you just aren't nurturing.

Before I get a com box filled with fake no, that's not trues, it is. My child comes to me hurting, screaming, and crying and my first instinct is not to kiss and make it better: it is to address the snapping issue in my brain and try like hell not to cringe and back away saying "Dude, why are you coming at me I DON'T KNOW WHAT IS HAPPENING PLEASE LEAVE."

So, Pope Francis using fresh terms was a relief. This in particular:

We have not yet understood in depth what things the feminine genius can give us, that woman can give to society and also to us. Perhaps to see things with different eyes that complements the thoughts of men. It is a path that must be crossed with more creativity and more boldness.

I identify in many ways with the new face of the new feminism movement. I speak out against domestic and sexual violence. I speak out against abortion. Just as the whole pro life thing sort of disqualifies me as a mainstream feminist, I sort of feel discounted within new feminism because my body was not naturally equipped to push out four large children, I don't enjoy breast feeding in the least, and there is no way a single person that knows me would choose the word "nurturing" as one of the three words that best describes me. What is a girl that is caught in between to do?

No way. I love my washer and dryer.

Just as there is not one type of man, women are different. We all have different strengths, different weaknesses, different fashion senses. I am comfortable in my own skin. I have things that I need to work on (it probably wouldn't kill me to be more emotive, empathetic, sensitive...) but I don't need to change in order to show how my feminine genius is not broken. I'm a woman. Boom. Creativity and boldness- you heard the pope. 

Now, Go back up to the top of the post and read the two links. 


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