"Being tender and open is beautiful. As a woman, I feel continually shhhh'd. Too sensitive. Too mushy. Too wishy washy. Blah blah. Don't let someone steal your tenderness. Don't allow the coldness and fear of others to tarnish your perfectly vulnerable beating heart. Nothing is more powerful than allowing yourself to truly be affected by things. Whether it's a song, a stranger, a mountain, a rain drop, a tea kettle, an article, a sentence, a footstep, feel it all-- look around you. All of this is for you. Take it and have gratitude. Give it and feel love."
Okay, so I love this quote for a couple of reasons. First, simply because I just love Zooey Deschanel. She's pretty much adorable. Second, because this quote just strikes home with me. For the last few years, though I have recently been doing a splendid job of getting over it, I have sort of just struggled with being a girl. Now, please don't take this the wrong way. My issue deals less with being a "girl" and more with being "girly". It used to just bothered me for some reason. I honestly had to be told by my cross-country coach in high school that "it is okay to be a girl!" multiple times. I'm honestly not very sure why I've ever been bothered by it so much. The only thing that I can figure out is that, in my head, being "girly" has always been directly associated with being "weak". In my head, being girly meant I had to be afraid of bugs. It meant that I wasn't allowed to love fishing and camping or getting a bit of mud on my face. It meant that I had to tear up when I saw commercials about homeless kittens on TV. And, quite frankly, I didn't want to be any of those things. I love camping. I love fly-fishing. And, I am probably a little too fond of making mud hand-prints on my calves. So far, as I moved down my mental checklist of "girly attributes I should avoid", it seemed that I was doing a pretty good job. Then it came to the crying thing... Not good. I don't just cry at everything. But almost everything... I would never in a million years cry at a homeless kitten commercial but I do cry during "Beauty and the Beast" when the Beast almost dies and then turns into the prince. I cry during "The Lion King". I sob through the entire second half of "Charly". Let's be honest, I cried during a preview of "Titanic". I haven't even seen the full movie. With all of this as evidence, I was convinced that there was something wrong with me. Nobody in their right minds could claim immunity from the term "girly" and cry during a preview for a movie. This honestly concerned me for the longest time. But, over the last year or so, I've learned that it's okay to be girly and it's okay to cry. Why should I hide what I'm feeling? Why should I pretend to be tough and hardened? I shouldn't. That's lame. "Nothing is more powerful than allowing yourself to be truly affected by things."
Thanks Eve Smith for sharing that quote.