Gentlemen, this post will not lower testosterone. It is not a diatribe about feminine woes and does not have the makings of a Hallmark Channel original movie. Still, you may want to avert your eyes.
Go ahead, read it; you know you want to.
At the tender age of eleven, I wasn’t prepared for womanly time. I mean I literally wasn’t prepared, and I needed to be. In fact, my entire indoctrination into the sisterhood consisted of a single sentence, “Don’t let anybody get in your pants.”
Yep, that was it. Everything else I had to get through osmosis, and of course, TV. The first time I was kissed by a boy, he leaned in and his “package” brushed my thigh. I jumped back and said, “Do you have Life Savers in your pocket?” He laughed at me and said, “Yeah right.” Stupid, I know!
I was well on my way to becoming a statistic, and not a good one.
I knew lots of things. I could take care of a baby and keep house like an expert. I knew love thy neighbor as thyself and other useful testaments to domestic tranquility, old and new, chapter and verse. Yet it never occurred to me that “Love thy neighbor as thyself” implicitly states that we should love ourselves. That sounds selfish, and isn’t selfishness a sin?
I did not know that I was wonderfully made, that my value was far above rubies or that I was worthy of, not a hot fudge sundae at the Dairy Queen, but to be loved as Christ loved the church. Once I became aware that making decisions for myself was my birthright, I started asking some questions. Turns out I’d been given only enough information to make me decent wife material. And quite frankly, that pissed me off.
I’m over it now, but oh, it would have saved us all a lot of trouble if somebody had just given me “the talk.” You know, the one that says your body is going to turn into one mother of a of freak show for the next, oh, probably 50 years and there’s nothing you can do about it. If you’re lucky, you’ll have 10 days out of every month when you won’t feel like ripping your hair out, lasering everyone else off the planet or breaking a dozen Hershey bars into a half-gallon of chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream, standing over the sink ladling it into your mouth and washing it down with a bottle of Cabernet. Oh, and watch those calories girlfriend.
Something along those lines would have been WAY more helpful than “Don’t let anybody get in your pants.”
Pat Benatar says love is a battlefield. Elithe Hamilton Kirkland says love is a wild assault. Englebert Humperdinck says love is a many splendored thing. Donnie Iris says love is like a rock. I think it’s probably all of those and more. Two points about love which we all can agree, we need mothers who love themselves for who they are and girls need their fathers. My hope is that readers will see that I was able to make a case for this in Summoning the Strength without writing about heaving bosoms or throbbing manhood!
“Fathers, be good to your daughters.
Daughters will love like you do.
Girls become lovers who turn into mothers.
So mothers, be good to your daughters too.”