I've been asking myself this question a lot lately. I've had a lot of people tell me I'm a strong woman, but I must admit, I don't really understand what that means.
Is strength taking care of your children first no matter what?
Is strength standing up for yourself in the face of adversity?
Is strength not making compromises for your health or sanity?
Maybe I'm strong, but the idea that these are somehow exceptional qualities makes me sad. That should be the norm. Mothers take care of their babies. Wives don't let their husbands tear them down. Taking care of yourself is what you should just *do.*
And yet... we don't.
The news is full of heartbreaking stories of failed parents who didn't even try to protect their own children.
There are countless bodies of women who never stood up for themselves, who felt they weren't worth saving.
This website is full of people who have spent a long time ignoring their own health and sanity.
I'm one of that last group, or at least, I used to be.
Why do we do this to ourselves? Why do we trick ourselves into thinking that hurting ourselves, or letting others hurt us, is easier than being strong?
Am I strong?
I don't think so. I am what I must be. I have two little girls who can't protect themselves, so that's what I do. Period. Even against people who love them, but can't make the right choices. No one else is going to look out for me, so these days, I do that. I have family and friends to support me, yes, but in the end, it's MY choice to take care of my mind, body, and soul, and set an example for my children to follow.
I'm facing a terrifying future ahead, but my fear isn't what matters.
Today's another day. What comes, comes. And I'll meet it, as always.
I don't have any other choice.