Guest Contributor: Kristy Mozes
When I hear the word female so many images, adjectives, traits and descriptions pop into my head. Some believed to be positive and some believed to be negative and most I have learned to embrace as just descriptive. Have you ever thought what your list would be? I do—all the time: mother, hopeless, farmer, introvert, chubby, determined, poor childhood, clinically depressed, funny, anxious, medicated, resilient, tired, bulimic, wife. Notice some may seem to cancel one another out, i.e. tired-resilient, determined-hopeless. How can I be both?
I believed that if I was one, I couldn’t be the other. In fact, so much so that I would convince myself I would never be successful because of my depression or because I grew up with little money. Even though I would experience happiness at times and feel determined. What my teens and 20s tried to convince me, but my late 30’s has taught me, is that you don’t have to pick. You don’t have to be funny if you’re feeling depressed, you don’t have to be determined if you’re exhausted, you don’t have to strong if you’re feeling so incredibly weak. Embrace your humor today even if last week you were so sad you cried all the time. Embrace your anxiety today even if last week you were so determined you felt like Wonder Woman. You pick. You chose who you are. Let go of the should and the have to and the expected to. Just be in the space you need; the space your heart and mind are occupying. There’s no rule book or blue print to feelings and life. I have looked for one, believe me. Understand you are made with everything you need inside of you to get through this life maze. You just have to look for it.
I buried myself in self talk of, I am not skinny enough, I am not pretty enough, I have no one that I can trust, When people find out where I came from they won’t like me, I don’t have any gifts or skills. Sometimes I view those years as wasted time. Time I could have been happy and found joy in my space and enjoyed the journey. Everyone struggles and hurts and questions their path. It is what makes us human. It is in those growing pains when everything becomes quiet, that we are hear the healing answers. Do I wish those times were less? Absolutely! Do I regret taking so much time to talk to someone and get help learning to love myself? You bet! Can I go back and change any of that? Nope! My emotional and mental breaks almost cost me my life, but what saved it was my tribe. Women. Friends. Family. We are our own answer.
I share my struggles, pitfalls, and mountains with other girls and women in hopes to lessen their feelings of isolation and time spent in the battle space. I have an 11-year-old daughter (she is my middle child and never lets me forget it) and have conversations with her daily about cheering for her teammates/friends/classmates/opponents, sharing in their joy even when that means she is not the winner, or she failed. I tell her, be partners with your girls, push them to reach their goals, uplift them when they are sad and teary, encourage them when they feel alone. You are a member of this beautiful tribe we call Women and supporting the one who may one day support you; that is how we lessen the battle space and succeed. We all wait in those crazy long lines at amusement parks to ride the roller-coaster. Not because they are steady and predictable and slow and without scary turns. But because, they are fast and have extreme highs and extreme lows that make you out your hands up and scream. What would the ride be if it wasn’t right? Doesn’t Katy Perry say, “you’re hot then you’re cold, you’re cold, you’re yes then you’re no, you’re in and you’re out, you’re up then you’re down, you’re wrong when it’s right, it’s black and it’s white……., you don’t really want to stay, no but you don’t really want to go-o”. That confusion is when you shimmer sparkle and shine.