“It takes years as a woman to unlearn what you have been taught to be sorry for.” ~ Amy Poehler
Have you ever tripped over someone else’s words? I do it all the time. I’ll be reading and something simply stands out more than the other words around it.
They trip me up and down I fall as if I need to get a closer look at them, holding them near to me for a long moment before I reassemble them back into a sentence of another author’s making.
Those words from Amy Poehler?
Like, head over heels. If the world had been watching there would have been laughter and finger pointing, I’m sure. You could sell tickets to the tripping I do in my head. I may appear graceful in person, but mentally it’s a whole ‘nother story.
These words, though—these words felt as though they pierced my chest, and momentarily, my breath caught. My world stopped for just a split second. I remember taking a long, deep breath when I realized I had been holding it—for how long, I don’t know.
These words, they hold such truth.
I recently made myself a promise. I hadn’t planned on sharing it with the world, but these words have made me reconsider that choice.
I looked in the mirror and I promised the woman I saw looking back at me that I would no longer apologize to another person for the “sin” of being myself.
I love myself.
I have worked hard and long to become the person I am today, and she is deserving of my respect. I have made a loving oath to honor her: that face in the mirror, that spirit in the body, that soul wiser than her years—to allow her to take up space.
I am sick of seeing women apologizing for being themselves. I see so many becoming smaller, and smaller, and smaller until they no longer recognize themselves. I see it. I see the apologies said and the apologies left unsaid but implied, and I ask you to make this promise with me:
I promise to honor the space I hold and acknowledge the work I have done in order to be able to do so. I promise to hold my ground. I promise to remind myself that I matter.
I promise to speak my truth even when my voice is weak and shaking with unshed tears because that is how we ask others to honor us as we honor them.
And I promise to encourage all the other women warriors out there to do the same—to speak, to listen and to do it all with love.
Won’t you join me? Let’s pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and plant those feet firmly in the dirt because, ladies, we have some roots to nurture. And today, today we have the wonderful Amy Poehler to thank for the water those roots received.
Author: Molly Murphy
Image: YouTube still
Editor: Travis May