Girl Power and Down With Haters....

Let Loose On A Special Occasion
So all the articles and blogs that have popped up from the ether of wonder known more commonly as the internet and onto my timeline over the last few weeks all seem to be about how women behave towards each other: why women hate each other, sabotage each other and pull each other down - you know the type of thing. I read a few of them then got fed up with women slagging off women for well, slagging off women in most of them and apart from a little chime of a long distance alarm bell thought very little of it. Surrounded by a group of warm, funny, brave and crazy girlfriends as evidenced in the photo above at our Sophie's 18th Birthday (they are sooo gonna love me for that!) and it's fair to say wrapped up and nurtured in the love we have woven through our own, each others, our childrens and in some cases our grandchildren's lives over  a minimum of 15 years, in some cases 46 years, hating other women is not a concept that I felt personally familiar with or afflicted by. Other women's cellulite, wardobe, new man, diets and thighs are no concern of mine.
Bless Us, What Style Icons....
On the whole, jealousy is not one of my many dark-self facets. Yes of course sometimes I think I'd like a bit more money, a newer car, maybe lose a few pounds - ok a stone or two, but only as fleeting fantasies or afterthoughts, they don't consume my every thought or stop my skint, curvier, old car driving self from snoring soundly in my warm cosy bed at night, oh no. Nor am I convinced that every woman on the planet is trying to steal himself from me if they so much as look at him. Not that he isn't highly stealable  or desirable to others you understand, but put it this way if I lose him at a party he'll be at the bar or nose to nose with someone, women included discussing West Ham or scooters - " hello love, this is Sue she rides a wicked mint green vespa px or this is Sam good ole west ham girl ...." even if he does always end up with glitter on his cheeks every time we go out, he's tall and hugs people a LOT. Besides, who else would put up with either of us? 
I could be wrong one of these days he may ride his scooter off into the sunset with some nubile young beauty shouting 'I'm leaving you, you cow!" all  Alan Partridgesque but I'd put money on him being back for a work shirt in the morning...
Cause for Celebration
Anyway, I digress, a little smugly I was feeling pretty much that this wasn't a thing that I stooped to. Girl Power, go me, high five all my sisters and love to everyone. Then we went to a bike /scooter show. As I watched grown leather clad and modern mod men park up and display their bikes or scooters all polished and buffed with pride, I watched a phenomena, they all unashamedly strolled round admiring each others wheels with utter glee, complimenting each other, seeking out the owner and shaking hands in admiration. Himself's excitement when his friend Graham won a rosette couldn't have been much greater if he'd won it himself. Would I have been this excited for a friend over myself? 
Of course I would, wouldn't I? Yeah totally I told myself with a slightly closer and louder alarm bell ringing.
All You Need Is Love
During the week I was having a facebook sesh, checking out who was doing what, catching up with photos, seeing who had amusing cat videos etc when it happened. I was scrolling down and I saw a post that made me pause, it was an acquaintance as opposed to a friend sharing her newly published novel, I felt antsy, I felt a wave of irritation, my thumb hovered over like and scrolled on, with a huff I put the phone down and bit my finger nail as a klaxon went off on full alert in my head. HATER!!! I snatched my phone back up and 'loved' the post before going on 'love' clicking spree - if it was posted I loved it, wowed it, gave it the thumbs up - If I could have gone round and personally shaken every postee's hand I would have done, such was my Hater shame. 
Exhausted and emotional I sat back thinking now everyone is going to think I've lost it and I can't really undo all the likes as that will look bad, so I'm stuck looking like a crazy woman. It made me quiet and sullen as I pondered my reactions and the emotions behind them for the rest of the evening. I spent some time in quiet meditation mulling it all over as I lie awake in the early hours. 
Bleary eyed by the morning I listened to what was gnawing at my soul and where the jealousy, such an unfamiliar and bitter tasting emotion was coming from. Success, competition, achievement.
It's a Start...
Not pleasant. After a long grounding and calling in, I looked back through the posts of the morning, listening to my gut, facing it when it made me want to turn away, looked into the darkness and identified the demons there. With a smidge of relief I realised that it wasn't aimed just at women, it was at anyone who was successfully doing things I had a secret desire to achieve, still mortifying though. So out came the scribblings, the diary, the books bought for research and a plan hatched, a long unopened file on the computer has seen the light of day and work has recommenced. Guess I've gotta spill the milk before I can even think about crying over it...

Courtesy Of Rhiannon Bevan Photography
I've been mulling it over all week and making myself come to terms with it in a positive non judgemental way. This blog has been rolling itself round my mind too, I wanted to say how I felt, I waited because it felt important to get it right. As the words formulated I idly had a stroll though facebook land and was thrilled to see that my friend Rhiannon had posted that she was delighted to have come home and found her photo was used in Kent Women in Business magazine. Go Girl! Utter delight filled me too. Rhiannon with the fabulously goddessey and appropriate name, has her own photography business and far from being scathing or mean about other people's work, always merrily likes, loves and wows at my snaps from my various jaunts, happily commenting on them and freely complimenting them without a hint of bitterness or fear so prevalent in modern society, not that she needs to worry to be fair - I've seen some stunning work of hers online but that's beside the point! Zero hating. This was the photo that was published so I messaged her and asked if I could please share it here. It's her birthday today, but even so she got back to me with a delighted yes. That's what we all need to do, women maybe more so. Raising each other up as opposed to tearing each other down, recognising it's not a competition, we don't need to struggle with comparisons whether it's bodies, jobs, photos or stories, there's room for all of us and all our wonders, what a wonderful tapestry we will weave when we have learnt to do this....

Have a Blessed Week x x 

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