So this is a post that I don’t want to write. It’s about a part of myself that I am embarrassed to say existed and continues to on some level. It has existed despite there being another part of me, a larger part, that exists within me as well that causes a conundrum. I am and have always been, in a large part, feminist. In my 20’s I studied Women’s Studies in college. I read Betty Friedan, Bell Hooks, Gloria Steinham, etc. I worked for women’s organizations such as a battered women’s shelter. Hell I volunteer for NOW for a minute (the plight of white privileged women didn’t do it for me at the time.) For God’s sake I got a tattoo on my back in my late 20’s of the sign for women signifying how much of a strong women I was. (Instead many people thought it meant I was a lesbian which caused some confusion at times:) I stayed single and mingled and never sought out a man to complete me. Yet all the while there was this other part of me. This part that I am squeamish to even own. It makes me feel weak, dependent, so not like the Rosie the Riveter t shirt I wore in my 20’s. This part of me was scared and fearful. It was so not “I am Women Hear Me Roar.” It didn’t have much to do with one of my FAV songs in my 20’s by Ani DiFranco “I AM NOT A PRETTY GIRL.”
Ani sings “I don’t need to be rescued. Put me down punk isn’t there a cat that needs to be rescued.” I would be all “hell ya Ani” and meanwhile in this dark, scared and lonely place I….ok here I go….
I wanted to be rescued.
Ugh bleh gross ugh but yes
I always wanted some easier softer way. Who doesn’t right? I work with people with addictions who often want to have some pill take their problems away. When people are in this place there is no real way to help them. It’s a fantasy world where everything is la la la and happy happy as long as they don’t have to do the work of getting better. Meanwhile in this dark place of mine I was holding onto hope that the above white knight in the Knight of Cups from my tarot deck would come along and sweep me off my feet. I would ride with him on the back of his horse off into the sunset. He would have all these amazing qualities but most of all he would have money; something I have never had. He would have the means for an easier life to take place. He would take this burnt out highly in debt social worker who has been trying to do good in the world and make everything better for her.
Well he hasn’t come along. And guess what, I don’t really judge that part of myself anymore for wanting him. I can be a feminist and sometimes want someone to take care of me. The proverbial white knight for women has always been this fantasy because women have been in this place of care taking of EVERYONE. I may not have children but I have certainly mothered more than my share. Due to most of the mothering being from a place of depletion, I would say that the white knight is a fair enough fantasy to have. He could look like Bradley Cooper, Ryan Gosling, George Clooney, Patrick Dempsey, Jason Bateman, (and the list goes on…) Really he would be kind, generous, funny, warm, friendly and he would have the means to make everything OK.
So yes he hasn’t come along but guess what??????
I am learning that I am more than OK without him.
I don’t need saving. I never did. At times I felt that I desperately did but what I really needed to do was to save myself.
I needed to learn that I was the only one could could save me.
I needed to learn how to be my own white knight.
Never in those years of holding on to that clingy dependent fantasy did I think about the White Knight. What would make him be someone who wanted to save another? I now know the answer…..because he couldn’t save himself. People who look to save others often need saving. I am now in a place where I don’t feel the NEED to be saved. A companion to share the ride, ya but saving is definitely in the HELLS NO category.
Women who hold on to this fantasy are not “gold diggers.” They are just tired. We put so much pressure on women in our society to be everyone’s everything and then we shame them for having fantasies about wanting to be saved from all that crap. Women need love and affection. They need someone by their side to help them realize that everything is going to be ok. Sometimes they may need saving and if that is the case what they really need is a good therapist. But ultimately they need love; first and foremost for themselves.
Life is becoming very different now. The fantasy…it’s still there. Especially since I am looking to move on from security and step into the unknown. But with Ani by my side and that inner knowing that everything was always and will always be OK, I step forward into the abyss.
Don’t try to rescue me and I will do the same for you.
Because you and I are strong enough to rescue ourselves.
I will meet you for tea and celebrate with our stories of triumph my soul sistas!!