There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you. ―
March is not my favorite month. Every year when the month starts, my Facebook news feed gets crowded with copied quotes on “What women want.” As if everyone figured that out already. Then on 8th of March, all of a sudden some women start posting gym selfies with different slogans: ” Love your body. Exercise and drink water,” “Love yourself today, go shopping,” “Be fit. Sky is the limit,” “A Beautiful woman draws strength from trouble, smiles during distress and grows stronger with prayers and hope. You are one of them. ”
Or this one. “She was everything I wanted. She was beautiful and charming, with a quick sense of humor, and she supported me in everything I did.” Of course, with a picture of a lean woman, smiling, and giving up everything for the sake of the world. Yes, right. We still live in that era. And do we think sky is the limit anymore, because we reached the moon long back?
Then there are discounts in the store on that day and even the week. I wonder why there is no in-store discount for a man. Isn’t manhood special too?
Once a friend wished me on Women’s day, saying, ” Be happy. You got one whole day for yourself. Why do you people always want more?” Every year I remember him. Women’s day pisses me off. Even the inspiring messages from those men who think women are responsible for all rapes because they go out to work, and wear fancy outfits. And messages from those women who write big words on their status on 8th March and on other 364 days they badmouth every better woman they come across. Only one day with sugar-coated attractive lines on social media.
I understand why International Women’s Day and month started and why it is still important to keep the tradition. Rape, female foeticide, infanticide,and domestic violence didn’t stop. Yet every year, women I know, women who are extremely educated, just talk and post about “looking right” in March. Every year I meet some women, who even after having it all, discuss about their gym routine. I wonder if we are becoming hollow internally by trying to beautify our external selves, by trying to fit in in a society where ideal women are the lean, calm, and smiling ones.
Do we women need to be ‘loved’ only on 8th March? Isn’t a woman a human, just like a man? Can’t Women’s Day and month mean something different in a social network loving educated world? For example, making a world where women can move safely, live without fear, and they don’t have to “smile” when they are feeling sad inside. And maybe they can eat ice-cream, look healthy, aspire and dare to dream. All, without fear and judgments.
I am not a feminist anymore. I don’t agree with many feminist definitions. But I love being a woman. I love the journey of other women who are focused on their goals and who make their marks in this world. I never liked a guy opening a door for me. I never liked special attentions, and special quotas, and special discounts for being a woman. But my journey is different. I have been luckier, even though I grew up in a country where well-read people I know give dowry to marry the daughter off, and the mother-in-law blames the woman in every divorce story she knows and narrates. I have worked hard to be the best in the room. And every year I think the month march mocks my journey. If womanhood was all about being lean, getting discounts, and receiving picture-perfect wishes by people who don’t consider women as human beings, well, then I think, we were living in caves now.
In March though, sometimes someone posts Maya Angelou’s poem and it brings such joy every time I read it.
Now you understandJust why my head’s not bowed.I don’t shout or jump aboutOr have to talk real loud.When you see me passing,It ought to make you proud.I say,It’s in the click of my heels,The bend of my hair,the palm of my hand,The need for my care.’Cause I’m a womanPhenomenally.Phenomenal woman,That’s me. – From Phenomenal Woman
This year March has been a terribly busy month here. I read more, wrote less. But this April, I am going to write daily. It’s time for another A to Z writing challenge. You’ll see a blog post every day till April 30. I will burn the mid night oil and try to write good things. I still haven’t decided the theme for the month. But I guess, I will write a lot about womanhood, something I am very proud of, something that doesn’t start and end in March.