My grandma used to say that. And like all grandmas who have seen some shit- she was right. Although, I would like to mention up front that I’m not always particularly invested in the learning process. Because it’s hard. And scary. And I’m definitely a pussy. Actually, I’m particularly qualified to engage in pussy-like tendencies, for two reasons:
Firstly, I have one.
And I say that with the understanding that this statement could be construed as self-defeating. But here are some of my credentials as a strong, independent woman who don’t need no man but also really, really enjoys bizarre sexual encounters with them and also relationships and also their facial hair, but we’ll get to all that later. (Spoiler alert: Things have not been going well.)
- I have read the Vagina Monologues, at minimum, 1700 times.
- Marilyn French was my favorite contemporary philosopher from ages 20-23. I know she is considered a novelist. But her words helped me shape my own philosophy of what it means and feels like to be a woman, so whatever. I don’t think she would be mad about it.
- I have read Margaret Atwood’s The Edible Woman almost every year since I was fourteen years old, before I even knew what it felt like to be metaphorically swallowed whole by the patriarchy. Which does, in fact, exist. In case you were wondering.
- I am able to recognize my own cognitive dissonance when it comes to issues about gender and equality and gender equality and rape and culture and rape culture, which I think is really the only credential needed.
Here’s the fucking thing about all that, though. I say I am a pussy because it is connotated with softness, which some people mistake as weakness, which makes them assholes and also wrong. The world is at times suffocating and also too big and also sharp and confusing but I like my softness and I am going to stay that way, even if it makes some life lessons harder to swallow. And if you have a fluffy, sensitive, kitten soul like myself, you should consider staying that way, too. It’s okay to be a pussy, colloquially known otherwise as being afraid sometimes. Being afraid just means you’re doing something and you might fuck it up but you’re doing it anyway. And that, my friends, is called doing the damn thing. Which is the only way to live.
So I guess at this point my point is that the world needs more of us soft ones. It just doesn’t like to admit it. Because it’s a dick. And I’m going to stop now before this turns into a metaphor about the world being a giant penis and how I am a super hero and will defeat it with my, well, softness. I would really, truly love to embark down that rabbit hole with whoever is reading this, but I have many more important things to say. (If you so choose, and I strongly encourage you to make this choice, please ponder the above story-line in your own time and let me know your thoughts.)
Secondly, the, at times, abrasive word choices I use to describe my experiences are just a cover for the tiny kitten soul inside my sort-of-hot but definitely end-of-my-twenties body. I am a pussy in the truest sense of the word. Although I think I made that pretty clear in the previous paragraphs and probably could have just done away with this second point all together, but structure and consistency are not in my immediate skill-set, neither in my writing nor life in general, so I’m leaving it the way it is. Because it’s easier. And unlike all the stupid things you may have heard throughout your life about the “road less traveled” and how hardship builds character and blah blah blah, I am here to say that sometimes the easy way is the best way because life is hard enough and sometimes I just want to ride my bike on a goddamn gravel path instead of army crawl through the fucking thicket. And that’s okay.
So that’s what I think about some things.
Now, back to my grandma’s words of wisdom. Life will teach you. That it will.
And I guess that is what this blog is about.
Now, typically, I would just leave it at that and jump down the rabbit hole and see if I come out the other side. But I’m getting too old for that shit.
I want purpose.
I need direction.
So I’m going to use the next few paragraphs to figure out why I feel compelled to write this all down.
Let’s give it a go.
This is a blog about standing on the cusp of things, like turning thirty or forty or fifty or twenty, moving away, running away, getting a new job, quitting your job, selling your house, leaving relationships with people you still love, leaving relationships with people you stopped loving, trying to quit smoking, going dry from consuming copious amounts of wine so you can think more clearly about what it feels like to be standing on the cusp of everything life has taught you thus far (maybe that one’s just me), dying, getting sick, putting your dog down, deciding what to wear, whatever and so on and so forth.
It’s about walking through fire and figuring out how the fuck you are going to get to the other side. It’s about creating what is on the other side and how to recognize and utilize all the things you already have that will help you get there. It’s about how to not die on your way.
That still isn’t very clear, but I think we’re getting closer and hopefully eventually everything will be a little clearer. The one thing I’m sure about though is that life will teach us one way or the other, even if we’re total pussies about it.