I come from a small family: a mother, a father, and a brother who is 17 years younger than I am. Father died a few years ago leaving Mother to fend far all three of us. Mother played the role of both being a provider and a nurturer. That was not easy, was it? Raising a family is one of the biggest challenges someone might encounter. Giving your family a good life is another story, a harder one.
In this process of getting through everyday and stumbling over debts, death and challenges, we changed. Pressure came crumbling within, my chest pounding hard, ready to explode any moment. There were moments when we seemed to become someone we did not even recognize. We are compelled to do matters unusual to us. We missed the moments of just having fun. Most often, having fun was not an option.
This transforming effect of life reinvented the way my family and I lived. My mother became my father and mother at the same time. I unleashed my motherly instinct on my little brother. I truly missed the fun part of life but I was astounded with how we were able to hurdle our own battles.
Women nowadays are tough rather than timid. Most have been among the ranks of top leaders and achievers. This is a true reminder that femininity is not synonymous to inferiority. This is becoming a far different picture of what others used to think about women.
There used to be points in HIStory that women were expected to just stay at home, do the chores, wait for the husband to come, and take care of the children. Women were not fit to reach universities, to get a professional job, and even to take political offices. Women were not even allowed to vote. A male child was much preferred than a female. A female one would be traded in hand to wealthy families to get more power. HIStory perfected his way firmly enshrining the machismo.
There was a Jewish myth about Lilith. According to the myths, she was the first female created together with Adam, of the same material and of equivalent rank. But because she refused to be in submission to Adam’s dominance, she chose to walk away.
Then came Eve, she was created from Adam’s rib designed to be a “supplementary helper” in safeguarding the creations and was expected to be in submission with her partner.
Whether the myth is true or not, the myth still presents the duality of femininity: to strive to be in equal rank or to become the complementary partner. We are given choices to be what we want, to be or to choose the path we wish to go. We should not let others define us, what we can become as individuals: be the Lilith or Eve of our own garden.
Our perceptions have changed through time. Mothers can also be good providers while being great nurturers at the same time. Raising a family is not dependent on just the father alone. It is a collaborative effort. And if you are a single parent, it is a great opportunity to show that you can do both at the same time. Yes, it will not be easy. Nothing really is easy when it comes to raising a child or a family. Juggling our roles as a parent, as an individual, or as a professional would never be easy. It is a posted challenge and you must go for it.
Grab the opportunity to learn. Savor every moment that you are becoming a better version of yourself. At times, you would be afraid and would crumble in thinking of a hundred ways of how you can fail. But, keep in mind that there are a thousand more ways of how you can succeed. No one can tell you that you are just a girl and will be constricted by boundaries.
Change is indeed inevitable and is a continuous cycle that most of us have apprehensions about. My Psychology professor, Sir Marco Antonio Rodas, said that we must not fear change but rather grow with it. Welcome the presence of pressure and make mistakes. Cherish every learning.
May everyone have that open-minded thinking to have reverence for personal development regardless of gender or social status. May everyone accept and embody the change that they always wanted for themselves.
At times, just like the phoenix, we may be charred by the ashes but never forget to rise again.