I have had a horrible week with my three year old. On Monday I locked myself in the pantry to sit on a tub of dried beans and sob. I am not proud of my behaviour, my lack of control or restraint and I do world class guilt about scarring him for life. Today I took some much needed time out to go for a run on the beach. Feeling the wind beat against me as I battled through it, watching and running barefoot in the waves as they sashayed on the shore I reflected on the difference in the high rollers and green foam of today’s sea and the crystal blue perfection and calm of last week’s beach. I asked myself (with thanks and apology to Richard Bach’s Illusions) – ‘Is it a perfect sea today?’ and I answered ‘It’s always a perfect sea’. And I realised that we women are like the sea. Ruled by the pull of moon, who shapes our forces and flows. Changeable, mercurial, captivating, luring. sometimes peaceful and quiet and still, warm and inviting, other times cold and cruel and hard, lashing in fury, pounding on the sands, hurling spit and spray as we rant and rage. And in between the two, a thousand different moods and emotions, a hundred different faces, all of them beautiful.
Just as we accept the sea in all her changing guises, so we women must accept ourselves as equally alluring whether in temper or tranquillity. There’s no point railing at the weather, little point therefore in forcing ourselves to fit some mythical mould of machine like lack of emotion. We are women, we are meant to emote. We are free to feel the full spectrum of emotional weather and to vent it as it flows. Just like a toddler but with a tad more decorum.
Men are like the rocks upon the shore – stubborn, steadfast, strong. Immovable, unchangeable, immutable. We women lap around them, hurl ourselves at them and rage against them. But they do not move. Maybe in aeons we will wear away an iota.
Mutable mermaid that’s me and my kind. Siren singing from the depths of our emotional worlds. Changing, transforming, shifting shapes and sand dunes in our tempestuous, tumultuous tempers. Intriguing, inviting, inciting. Fully alive, fully present, grounded, both Madonna and whore, mistress and wife, healer and warrior, mother and child. Every dichotomy, every nuance in between.
Wonderful, amazing, beautiful women. As we are. Captivating, challenging, charismatic. Maybe I’m doing my son a great service in exposing him to the vagaries of the sex from an early age. Maybe one day he will thank me. In the interim, I am going to accept myself as a passionate, perfect specimen of the species and enjoy her, storm or calm.