WWN Reflections by JulietKego: I had a very powerful and humbling conversation with a guy today, after he’d listened to my poem: The Home-Maker. It opened my eyes to some biases and prejudices that we unconsciously have.
Sometimes, the home-maker is a man. In the current economy, I come across so many men who earn significantly less than their spouses. Our society is a bit insensitive when relationship dynamics between the sexes do not fit the ‘traditional’ molds of what social conditioning has ingrained in us.
As we go about teaching ‘women empowerment’, let us realize that it must capture both sexes. Our men need to be engaged, empowered and educated on how to relate with and love these new breed of ’empowered women/girls’. We’re taking a lot for granted.
Men/boys are being left behind in the empowerment train. Just because someone has an appendage between their legs, does not wisdom and empowerment grant. Just as we teach girls, let us also teach our boys, about self-love (not ego love), healthy boundaries and what it means to be secure.
We must talk about the fluidity of roles, of managing the variances, of dignity, honour and respect BOTH ways, of resilience and coping skills when the reality does not fit the ‘norm’. Relationships are free-style. People must be given the toolkit to embrace options and choices that fit their peculiar situations.
We must become more aware and empathetic of our language and avoid generalizing, distorting and deleting salient issues in a way that strips people of dignity. Not every woman wants to be a career woman. Some take total pleasure and satisfaction in being home-makers.
Just as not every man wants to be the alpha male and are totally secure in their wives earning more and being the go-getters. Let us be open to allowing people make their choices, as they deem fit. We tend to project OUR own understanding and belief systems on others. NO ONE has all the RIGHT answers. Do you and let others BE.
P.S: Prof. Michelle B. thanks a lot for your help in the revisions:-)
Enjoy this Floetry by JulietKego:
We found each other
In the fields of freedom
And became partners in love…
Me, with dreams to heal the world
You, daring to dominate her
And we built a home and created a haven
Till I forgot to dream, and forgot my path
And looked to you for direction
But you were not here
You were out there,
chasing wild dreams
in the fields of freedom
And I found myself lost in life,
slowly dying, disappearing…
I lost you swimming seven seas of sorrow,
(Unraveling the gestalt of layers of sorrows:
anger, sadness, fear, hurt, guilt,
shame, pain, blame),
there, where rippling streams
of stagnant dreams,
(like quick sands),
suffocate and drown,
I lost you in the soundless,
wandering winds of wasted whispers,
where words that should be said out loud,
Become lumps that are buried
and swallowed whole.
‘I love you; I need you; I want you;
I miss you; I hear you; I am sorry;
I see you tired and I appreciate you.
YOU, my love, as you are now.’
Words now engulfed
by the gulf of our muted conversations…
I lost you in the eyes that pretended to look,
refusing to see the signs of surrender.
The eyes that silently cry out:
(‘I am tired’, ‘I give up’, ‘I give in’,
‘Let me BE or let me go!’)
I lost you,
reaching for the hands that you let go;
missing your daily hugs
over my now rounded frame
The picture of those arms,
gone too soon, gone too fast,
leaving me here, all alone,
pregnant with our child.
I lost you and in my loss,
I found myself;
I re-remembered my dreams of me, for me
The me that I’d forgotten was ever there
The me I’d killed, slowly and gently,
as I made room for you;
a home for us….
I lost you to the 9-5 fields of freedom
where workers find meaningbut
where I never quite found myself
couldn’t you see, my love
that the cubicles choked my dreams?
I stopped dreaming to let you be and do
But you? You refused to break the rules
Or shift the roles
and allow the air flow,
enough for two….
I lost you as I took in and let out the air within,
making room for blooming me,
learning how to grow wings and fly
finding a new home in the wilderness,
a safe nest for me….
And when you do find you,
Come, come, quickly and look for me
But know that I will not be here
(lost in laundry, cooking, cleaning,
gardening, babysitting, baking..),
watching, waiting, wasting away,
as I long for you…
No, I will not be here
I’ll be out there,
in my fields of freedom
Drinking in all of life,
dancing to my song.