Thoughts from 30,000 feet.

Can men and women be just friends? In 2019 it still seems as though the world really can’t grasp the concept of a man and a woman being friends without wanting more from one another. Platonic love does exist. Some friends are just there for you, to be there for you… regardless of what their gender is those desires to look after your friend are still the same.

Still, begrudgingly, the inquiries about ‘what really goes on’ between two people of the opposite sex as though a man and a woman can’t be in the same room alone with one another without tearing off their clothing.

I guess I should rephrase my question. Why can’t men and women be friends?

The struggles of being a girl, part two.

I realize with the last list that I made that there are so many struggles that come with being a girl. And so, I’ve compiled a part two. This is meant to look at things in a light-hearted way, but also, to be informative and serious. This list is not meant to bash anyone or tear anyone down. I’m also not whining, I’m just talking about the very real reality of being a female in 2019. Here goes:

  1. “Don’t be such a girl” and”Don’t be such a pussy” and “You’re such a whiny little bitch” and so on and so forth… We’ve all heard them before. It’s likely that we’ve even said them ourselves a few times without realizing what we’re doing. Have you ever noticed though, when someone from the male gender is insulted, he’s referred to as having some sort of feminine characteristics… implying that females are weak, horrible and whiny. I most often hear men use them as insults, but I will say that women do it as well. Whenever I hear it though, I remind people that if their main form of insulting someone is by degrading my entire gender, they’re coming off looking pretty stupid.
  2. The Pink Tax. Have you ever looked at two like products, identical even, one marketed towards women and one marketed towards women? The women’s item costs more. Always. Companies put higher prices on items marketed towards women – though it might be just small, it’s something that adds up. 8% here, 10% there and you can look at thousands of dollars by the time a year is done. Where you can, if you know about the Pink Tax, you can buy the products marketed towards men. But, it’s not always possible. And imagine how much that adds up over a lifetime. Next time you’re in the grocery store – wander down the aisle and compare like products of men’s shave gel to women’s shave gel, or a men’s razor to a women’s razor. There will be a difference in price.
  3. Wage Disparity. It’s a proven fact that women earn 79 cents for every dollar that a man makes for like positions of employment. I happen to have experienced this firsthand at my last position – where I had a male counterpart with no education, four years less experience than I and little-to-no knowledge of the industry, who made 12,000 more per year than I made. This happens everywhere. Men seem to be valued more in work environments in spite of what a female may bring to the table. I have a friend who, in an entry level position obtained with his bachelor’s degree, makes more in his second year of work than his wife does with a PhD and five years experience. Now I understand they work in different industries, but how does a doctor make less than someone who barely scraped through a bachelors degree? I think that it’s something people gripe about, but then often forget about and move on with their lives because it seems like a battle too big to wage. But honestly, I wish there were more people talking about it. There are doctors, lawyers, welders, mechanical engineers, and so many more women who are making less than there male counterparts for seemingly no other reason than they are not male.
  4. Feminine hygiene products are a ‘luxury’. This is an important thing to to note – in many parts of the United States, and the world for that matter, feminine hygiene products are taxed as being a luxury item. This has nothing to do with the Pink tax, this has to do with government’s making a willing decision to declare these products as something that is not needed, but rather, something we just choose to buy because we like them. This luxury tax can range anywhere from 5 to 14 percent, for the purchase of something that is ‘not a necessity’ according to government. I don’t know when PMS became a choice, but if I could choose to be without it, I would. In the meantime though, it seems like a lofty price to pay over a lifetime solely for the fact that you’re a woman with properly functioning body parts.
  5. When your bra tries to kill you. (Okay, I’m being a bit dramatic with that leadup) It’ll happen so casually, you’re just out one day – walking down the street in the sunshine with a friend or your dog and bam… out of nowhere there’s a sharp pain in your chest. Just because the laws of the universe say you can never keep your comfortable bras, one wire has exploded out the side of your bra and shoved itself into your skin, possibly hard enough to cause you to bleed. It doesn’t happen very often, but I’m certain that every girl knows how it feels.
  6. Trying to run with big boobs, or boobs in general. I’m not a runner. That is largely in part to the size of my boobs. I explained it to a male friend of mine once by asking him to put his backpack on his front instead of his back, and then telling him to run down the road. I genuinely think he understood after that point. It’s just… harder. If you’re a girl and you’re a runner – I commend you. Girl you are my hero.
  7. Being slut shamed without being slut shamed. Honestly, when you try to explain a story of something that made you uncomfortable, or scared, or mad, about an interaction with someone and the person you’re telling the story to asks “what were you wearing?”, that’s a real piss off. That’s how you slut shame someone without calling them a slut and I hate it. I hate it when I hear that phrase. Whether you’re wearing a mini skirt or a down parka, it really doesn’t give anyone the right to mistreat you.
  8. When we focus on our work we’re considered not girly enough and we when we focus on our looks we’re considered vain. That’s really all there is to it. No explanation necessary.
  9. Bobby pins and hair ties seem to grow legs and walk away. I can’t even fathom how much money I’ve spent on these items over the years. Where do they all go? Perhaps they’re all having a party somewhere in the sunshine. Oh, it’s especially the worst when you’re down to your last hair tie and you go to put up your hair in a nice ponytail and the hair tie breaks in your hand. Cringe.

Regardless of your gender I think we can all agree that we need to be nice to one another. Everyone goes through struggles in life and we’ve all got a battle to fight. Be kind.

Struggles of being a girl, part one >

International Women’s Day

She wasn’t doing a thing that I could see, except standing there leaning on the balcony railing, holding the universe together.”

JD Salinger

I would like to dedicate this post to my mother who is currently undergoing treatments for cancer. She is a lover and now a fighter, a warrior and the strongest woman that I know. Thank you, mom, for always being the light at the end of the tunnel and for always holding the universe together. I am so proud to be your daughter.

Here’s to all of the badass women in this world who continue to push us forward, make us better and make the universe more. I am forever grateful to know you, to love you and to aspire to be like you.

Who are the women and girls in your life that you admire? Who do you aspire to be more like?

Pet Peeve: “Don’t be such a girl” and so on and so forth.

It makes me angry when I hear people say things like “don’t be such a girl” or “you fight like a girl” or “you throw like a girl”. As a female it gets thrown your direction so dang much that eventually you just start to believe that being female is a bad thing. You just accept it. You know what it means and you don’t argue with it because arguing would take far too much time and effort on someone who doesn’t want to understand.

I am a girl. I have a short stature, and long hair, curvy hips and small hands. I’m proud to be a girl. I do fight like a girl – because I am a girl. Fighting like a girl doesn’t mean that I’m a bad fighter, or that I’m weak, or that I’m incompetent. I’m extremely competent and if it came down to a physical fight I could hold my own with many men. 

I do throw like a girl. It might not be as far as my male counterparts, but that doesn’t stop me from sinking baskets, or clinching that out at home plate. It doesn’t stop me from hitting the waste basket EVERY…SINGLE…TIME.

Being a girl is not a bad thing. It pisses me off when people throw it around as though it’s an insult. Just because I was born female does not mean that I am slower, dumber, weaker and not as good as a man. I make my own money, I pay my own bills, I work, I work out, I fix broken pipes, change flat tires, lift heavy boxes, and can turn around and put on a dress and heels after it’s all done.

I am not weak. And being who I am is not less than anyone else in this world. 

Being female is not a bad thing. It’s not a weak thing. It’s not something that we should be ashamed of, sad about, or made to feel as though we’re not good enough when a man wants to put down another man. And women do it to, don’t get me wrong. I would say that infuriates me even more – when women say it to one another. I just want to hold a playback button to their ears and ask ‘do you her yourself right now?’

As a gender, we should not be treated as though we’re lesser than because we don’t grow up to play in the NBA. ‘You throw like a girl’ is not an insult and should not be used as such. ‘Don’t be such a pussy’ should never be used as a means to make someone look weak.

Firstly, do you really need to insult this person? Could your efforts be put forth to something more positive? Secondly, if your insulting someone is coming at the cost of degrading or demeaning an entire gender then you need to work on your insults. Tearing other people down is not a way to get your point across.

You know what, save the insults all together. When your girlfriend beats you in an arm wrestle, I hope you’re proud of her. When you’re daughter hits a home-run at bat, I hope you’re extremely proud of her. If you really, genuinely, must make reference to someone you know as being weak, just use the term weak. That’s it. Nothing more. Leave women and girls out of it.

Let us throw how we want to throw and live how we want to live. The world is a much nicer place when we’re not verbally or physically beating up on one another for the gender which we’re born into.

For a few someone’s I know.

This is a tribute to the nice girls. Girls like you, her and I. This is for the girls who are comfortable with their own flaws and who over look yours with the sincerest of hopes that you’ll do the same. Yet time and time again, they’ll end up being just another test run on the quest to find the ‘perfect girl’. This is for the hopeless romantics that, although they may have never been in love, know that it exists. For the girls who try so hard to find it in every guy that they meet. For the girls who believe that something was better than nothing and that what they have with him is better than what they have without. This is for the girls that would rather look back and know the outcome, as opposed to wondering what could have been. To the girls who take chances, step out of their comfort zone to find a voice to say things that, even thinking about, gives them butterflies. This is for the girls who attempt to find comfort in hearing “there’s plenty of fish in the sea” and for the girls who will try to mend his heart with the very same advice. This is for the girls that will throw their morals out the window, with the confidence that he will commit himself; the girls who will fall for the pretty words and promising lies. To the optimists who frequently check their phones sincerely hoping they’ve ‘just missed his call’ and to the realists who will turn their phones off knowing he won’t. This is to the girls who aren’t afraid to cry and for the girls who won’t allow a single tear to be shed. This is for the hero that nurses his hangover the next morning only to be informed about his wild drunken hookup with the ‘hot blonde’. And, this is for the ‘hot blonde’ that doesn’t think she deserves anything more than a one night stand.

And, while this goes out to the girls who have had their heart broken, this also goes out to the guys who think they will never find ‘a nice girl’. Are you looking for a girl who will call you just to say hello and spend hours baking cookies into heart shapes? Are you willing to watch her favourite movie over yours? And are you willing to wait those extra minutes while she’s finishing getting ready? Will you be proud to say that you’re taken, and proud to have her next to you when your single friends are inviting you to the club to pick up girls?

Here’s the actual question. Are you really looking for a nice girl, or just a quick fix? Truth be told, a ‘nice girl’ isn’t the same girl that will pride herself in being your flavour of the week and understand that there are no strings attached. While nice girls might like your flirty attention, what they really desire is for someone to see beyond their looks… because beneath that beautiful exterior might just be a personality to match that no one has bothered to notice.  If you’re truly looking for a nice girl, you might just realize that she’s been in front of you the whole time. Maybe, if you’re lucky, she’ll still be waiting when you finally realize. Take the time, make the effort. You want ‘the girl’, you’ve got to be ‘the guy’ she deserves.

And for all of the nice girls in this world, don’t give up on being a hopeless romantic, a believer, a hero, optimistic, fearless and strong. Don’t settle for less than what your heart knows you deserve. Love isn’t easily stumbled upon, and, can often be accompanied by heartbreak and heartache. But somewhere there is a guy that’s looking for you. Maybe you haven’t met him yet, but wherever he is, that is where your heart belongs.