I have been called by my friends as being a strong and independent woman, or simply a strong woman; thus to say, I can handle myself; strong in convictions, emotionally “stable”, debatable, and trying to feel okay when actually I’m not.
Yet even on those matters, I find myself feeling down, the loser of the day, and the weakling among my “eagle” friends at some point. All of those have stories behind to tell you. Such circumstances have forced us to act strong, tough and powerful women just because we feel the commitment to. Being a single parent could make others feel an obligation to stand strong for their children; being a breadwinner can force us to be emotionally anchored; being the eldest in the family would try to bring us the strength out of us to secure the younger siblings; being an ordinary girl who has been left by exes could create a huge change to being self-reliant; being a successful and determined woman who reached her dreams by herself can make us be called the independent woman that we are.
I have been related to this kind of reality, that I forgot that being weak doesn’t significantly mean I am weak myself. It just states that I am human; plainly that’s it, as cliché as it sounds. Being weak isn’t equally the same to being a girl playing in the park getting some clumsy bleeding wounds; or sitting down in the classroom being bullied by others and has been called sickly and inadequate.
I could recall my experiences of trying to be strong when all I wanted was to quit. In my circle of friends at school, I am the oldest. Automatic response – act like your age – be mature, be firm, be controlled and be someone who can fight for them when everything fails. But one day, I failed myself. I failed my family. I failed my academics. I failed in relationships. I couldn’t figure out how to fix and bring myself back together. I couldn’t see the silver lining of trying to deliberate and work out to be okay again because my younger friends are probably waiting for the older friend that they ran to; plus knowing that my parents look up to me even when I’m the youngest. So now tell me, how can I regain my “original” strength?
It doesn’t make you less of a woman (human) when you feel tired and frail.
While all of the strong women out there who toughens others, who cheers up their family members, who can be responsible on their own, who can pretentiously live life without anyone, admit it – you have the legitimately tendency to be as tired as others can be. We have always complained to our inner selves (and the Internet) that we are so compacted in a society that makes us feel we have to be firm because women have been known to be weirdly disorganized, temperamentally unstable, and mentally indecisive; and yet we act totally fine.
The social media world has been filled with blog articles what it’s like to become a strong woman when they’re broken; or what it’s like to become a strong girl when they’re insecure. I mean, what’s wrong to being shattered and self-conscious? Generally, it’s part of life entirely. And to be honest with you, being strong takes us to admit that we’re not okay. Telling others you can be on your own when you need them is one sign that you’re not strong. And that’s what we call being pretentious.
Honestly, I have been there who profess that people can leave, people can drag me down, and I’m fine.
Lies. All lies.
And that could probably be relatable to me up to now.
But reflection time hits, that’s not an epitome of strength. It takes complete humility to admit that you’re crushed that you become strong. It’s becoming vulnerable that makes you one.
And woman, you are allowed to feel. You are allowed to feel weak. You are free to be insecure and to feel ugly at some days. You have the right to. Because in that freedom of feeling those “unnecessary” emotions, you find grace to be strong. And that’s what makes you stronger.
– Rinnah Ramirez