There is something in me awake. I can see her eyes in the dark. Green and wild. She is the thing in the closet that I was warned about. She is pussy with her juices. She is the No that allows the full yes. She is the me I would have been if girls were not all supposed to wear pink.
She has been awake for awhile glaring at me. Moaning softly. She has shown up in disease, in the dances where I forgot to be pretty, the moments where I was raw instead of nice, where I shoved instead of smiled, cursed passionately, shared my REAL dreams, had more wine than was socially mandated and was still when my mind told me I should be doing. She is me….undiluted and unadulterated.
I am in love with her. But I have been told my whole life in the faces of lovers, my Mother, other women, and the unrelenting assault of media, that she will destroy me. And I have felt, that just like racism, misogyny has only spread out like poison under the top soil of the earth. We are still being burned alive, singed slowly from the inside out. Raped by words and concepts. Shunned for our wildness.
I have shaken the bars of my mental and social prisons, yelled loudly, and even escaped, but the idea of being alone has been too much. Not in the beginning. Not in the run. But in the cold and the hungry and the hopeless parts of each adventure. I have turned to the Divine, to my gut, to food, alcohol, Netflix binges, and dating. But none of these replaced the support that was needed to explore who I was as a woman more sustainably.
I joined Spiritual communities, I read Women who Run with the Wolves, I started a Master’s Degree around the concept of a “Feral Female.” I ran workshops, I shared my ideas, I was given permission to explore a diversity of sexual practices, but none of these things gave me the strength I needed to sustainably challenge the status quo. It was never my dream to be an activist or aspire to be different. Like anyone marginalized by society I only have wanted to be myself and be loved. I have wanted to piece myself back together. Flip the toggle of my own vibrancy. Open the windows and doors of my body. And to stop trying to suffocate the woman, and animal, that I am.
Photo: Jeff Freeman