Women & Wolves: the Path to Freedom, Love & Badassery.

Featured art by Samir Rafi.

estes

The topic of the ‘Wild Woman’ gets thrown around a lot these days. It no longer has that surreptitious taint of insinuations carved and bellowed from the bellies of conservative men and women. The ‘Wild Woman’ can be a hardworking mom, a mischievous daughter at play or the woman who says no when the bullshit is layered on thick. She isn’t a harlot and if she is, then it is by her choice and prerogative. Clarissa Pinkola Estés shed much required and intuitive light on the ‘archetype of the wild woman’ in Women Who Run With the Wolves (1992) and how important it is for women to return to that evanescent place known as their freedom. The female psyche undergoes constant cutting and shredding from birth…but imagine the creative possibilities we could achieve if we learned to live in tune with ourselves?

I’m not here to talk about the liberation of women or fuel the feminist chariot (not that those aren’t intriguing topics to  me)…I’m here because I had an earthy reminder from whatever powers exist in our universe that my fangs are important. Between exploring the origin of fairy tales in my academic studies and having life shit all over me, I learned to respect those trigger warnings within myself. I’m the type of person that people love to say two things to :

  1. Calm down
  2. Are your fangs really necessary?

The mistake people make with me is that they don’t seem to realize that I AM calm ( in a weird stormy sort of way) and that baring my fangs is how my body and mind register that something just isn’t quite right. I think if I didn’t bare these fangs of mine, I’d end up a bloody trampled carcass. That’s not very badass, now is it?

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Via Pinterest

A dear friend of mine, who life forced me to say goodbye to over 6 years ago, recently pirouetted back into my life this week. If ever there was a yin to my yang, it was her. Perhaps losing her made me develop a deep mistrust for others over the years. She’s the type of creature that makes you want to break out quoting

She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that’s best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes:

Thanks Lord Byron. Now if you could do some hocus pocus from beyond the grave and find me a man worth quoting your poetry about, that would be greatly appreciated.

Anyway,my friend comes back into my life, when the lines of fate are dancing dangerously along the edges of a supernova. And yet her timing could not be more perfect, more needed. Why? Because when I’m with her, I howl. The deepest, most raw, most honest howl ensues. And my fangs glitter from the reflection of the stars and the moon. I needed that. To be reminded of my strength. All women need that. And that is why I feel connected to those curious nymphs of my gender these days. We need to help each other grow. Not stab each other in the back at the sight of a new pair of shoes or a charming man. I’m all for war with any woman who needs a bitch slapping (don’t get me wrong) but I’m starting to nurture ideas of respect…respect that has been taken away from me on many occasions  (whether people meant to or not) and I think respect is the path to love.

Not only do we need to find love for ourselves, but we need to find a way to show men how to love us. Sometimes I think I come across as a male-basher. Nothing could be further from the truth. I love men. They give us butterfly feelings in the pit of our tum-tums and make awesome adventure companions. But recently I’ve noticed they’re not very good at understanding what it means to truly respect or love a woman. No matter how much they try or think they do. We’re confusing specimens, so I can’t really blame them. So perhaps, instead of hating them for it, we can show our displeasure (rather than accepting it as society forces us to) and teach each other. It’s not up to men to show women their worth. So females need to step up. We’re not frail, abandoned or dependent creatures. And if you think you are, you’re not doing anyone any favors by being so. Be free…be honest…and love from that ancient place inside yourself. That’s the place where creative impulses brew and stories take flight. It’s where you learn to be a better person. Strong. Helpful. An Amazonian friggin’ Queen.

“If you have ever been captured, if you have ever endured hambre del alma, a starvation of the soul, if you have ever been trapped, and especially if you have a drive to create, it is likely that you have been or are a feral woman. The feral woman is usually extremely hungry for something soulful, and often will taken any poison disguised on a pointed stick, believing it to be the thing for which her soul hungers . . . In order to avoid these snares and enticements that are tripped by a woman’s time spent in capture and famine, we must be able to see them in advance and sidestep them. We have to redevelop to see them with insight and caution.” (Estés, 1992, p. 231)

So if I need to bare my fangs or pull out a weapon or two in the name of caution to side step life’s poisons…I’m not going to apologize for it anymore. I’m going to gladly do it.

“You know, I’ve been thinking about how long people have been making decisions for me, pulling on my strings. I’m tired of other people’s decisions ruling my life and I’m done taking orders.” Dutch, Killjoys, Season 2 Episode 3

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Via Buzzfeed

 

 

 

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Published by

Kamalini Govender

I'm that girl that looks badass in her black boots reading Gothic Psychoanalytic Lit but really just wants to pew pew pew with someone.

11 thoughts on “Women & Wolves: the Path to Freedom, Love & Badassery.”

  1. Ahhh Dutch. 😆 The concept of self love has gone from being about narcissism to being about self esteem. We cannot be strong and give ourselves to another (be it friends, a spouse or even our kids) until we love who we are and have no fear in showing it. Excellent post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I knew you’d appreciate the Killjoys references 😉 2017 hasn’t even really begun and already I’m on fire with understanding and this whole growth/love thing 😀 Season 2 of Killjoys = EPIC! I may have watched it like 5 times over already. Lucy is pretty badass this season (as always). I may be cheating on the Falcon with her 😉 Thanks for the comment! Have an awesome geekful day 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post, thank you so much for sharing it!
    I found myself nodding emphatically when I reached the point where you say that men are not very good at understanding how to respect (and cherish?) a woman: we are, by and large, still a mystery despite these long millennia of coexistence, and that’s one of the truest and saddest considerations I’ve seen recently.
    And I totally approve the Dutch quote, of course… 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aaaah thank you so much for reading. I think (or hope) that writing about it helps them understand. I can see how talking about things like these directly could seem like an attack…and no one wants that. We all just want to get along and love each other (and most importantly love ourselves) the best we can. Killjoys fans are always welcome on my site 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This post is speaking to me in so many levels, but then is this suppose to be surprising? All of your posts do and while I find myself nodding in agreement, you continue to show me new ways of how truly close we are in so many ways.
    I have been relating to the wild women sisterhood, our connection with wolves and the instinct found in both. Your post is truly speaking to my soul and as always you told the story and painted the picture beautifully.
    Here is a little quote I came across I like to share with you my beautiful sister.
    To be a wild woman you don’t have to be aggressive or assertive.
    Like a tree you’ll have to find your roots and then you will bend with the wind. Shikoba….
    In other words be yourself. The right people will always love you for who you are. Use your fangs and claws to stay grounded during times of aggression or assertion. Remain flexible with what the wind blows your way. Choose to bounce back without becoming broken. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love that. Because this is the point I find myself trying to make with people. Wild women are only ‘wild’ in a creative sense. To the right people they are rooted trees. We can nurture and feed a loving growth process. But not under restrictive or damaging circumstances. Nothing should cage people. Honesty and love is what a wild woman is all about. A force to be reckoned with…but only to the right people. I know you get me 😉 Thank you for your wise words. I’ll be taking your advice (as always!).

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I remember when that book came out. I was too young to appreciate it, but I made a mental note of it because it seemed like my kind of book and it was getting a lot of attention. When I found it in a used bookstore in CM, I devoured it. I think I might have underlined passages like I was in college and taking notes. Bri wanted to read the book and I hesitantly gave it to her. (The book was falling apart, too!) I’m going to have to get my hands on another copy!

    I’ve written about this topic of man vs woman and how we expect to be treated vs how we treat ourselves and being the old crone that I am (555), I will say that I’ve noticed when I’ve let a man treat me like shit, I do come back better and stronger having lived through the experience. And the next one is the opposite 😉 He has to be, if you learned anything.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You should definitely give it another read. I think it’s one of those books that you need to keep and reread passages at certain moments dotted through your life. I’m doing major Kami searching at the moment and I’m finding out things that I certainly wish I’d learnt earlier but I think fate kinda times things differently for different people. I don’t wanna say the men I go for are assholes, because they certainly have taught me so much through the good times and bad…but they definitely do seem to fall into a similar category: the full of shit box. 😀 But that could very well be my error of judgment in pursuing such types, or maybe I’m just too much of a slayer. I’ll keep you posted though…maybe the next one will prove me dead wrong…if he can handle me 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh, I read it. Sorry if it seemed like I hadn’t it. And it is an amazing book, esp for me since I love exploring archetypes, symbolism, fables and fairy tales.

        The men we pursue, at least for me, have been about fantasy chasing. I have this idea of ‘falling in love with the way we met’ stories or ‘what I think this guy will be like’ narrative and I’m always wrong.

        When I stopped thinking ‘this one is for me’ that’s when I enter a long term relationship with someone unexpected or different.

        Liked by 1 person

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