Rape. Birth control. Really. It pisses me off is we are still debating women’s rights issues 45 years later. The freak out over you and I being beautiful, strong, gifted, sexual, intuitive, provocative-  a woman of power is their issue not ours. It might be time for you to own the balls to say it, claim it and lead with it. Here’s my SoulCollage® The Watcher and the Witness.

I am tired of my womanhood being judged, used for political gain. What legacy am I leaving my daughter, grandchildren if I remain silent, stand on the sidelines and say nothing?

At 15 the book Our Bodies, ourselves became the “bible” for claiming my power as a woman. I joined our local National Organization of Women (NOW) as a Junior in high school, campaigned for the Equal Right Amendment (ERA), adored Glorida Steinem subscribing to Ms Magazine, wrote papers on abortion and women’s rights.

I was a woman on fire.

It was 1972…and looking back I was a pretty ballsy chick. I didn’t feel that way at the time, more so I was very shy, mumbled and didn’t want to be seen. Teachers teased me for my beliefs. Started my first business with an idea- condos full of grandparents and grand kids. Biking my way down Gulf Shore Blvd stopping and delivering little hand printed index cards telling about my babysitting service to all the condo grandmothers. Made a lot of money. Worked two jobs to make my own money because my parents were broke. I swore that I would be my own woman, create my own wealth and not marry until I was 28.

College I blossomed. Didn’t bother me if I didn’t have a Saturday night date, I’d get a group of my sorority sisters together and go out. I still remember walking through the TV room seeing dateless sisters stressed out sitting in front of the TV. I just couldn’t understand why I needed a man to have fun.

I enrolled in one of the first college classes in human sexuality (aka women studies)  offered at UF. Bought my first vibrator, figured out and became responsible for giving myself pleasure. The big O freed me.

I fell in love at 19 with my future husband (a blind date) who loved me being strong and confident. Had no issues with me creating my own business- loves it..and loved me even making more money than him. Thirty seven years later we are still married, friends and in love.

Cut to 1997 me sitting in FAU Women’s Studies program looking to get my psych degree. The professor is all about “I hate the patriarchy” At this point I’ve done a lot of healing that leaves me knowing men are as wounded as women are …I share this truth in class and find myself challenging the status quo debating the professor. Speaking up most women in the class start leaning towards my way of thinking which made the professor go ape shit more than once. I see it’s all about control even in college. It’s pretty funny, at the end of the semester I know this college was not the place to be. I left and got my degree in transpersonal psych where I could be me.

We are all wounded and from that wounded place comes the teaching, the healing, the connection.

I learned this when I met Glorida Steinem at a NAWBO party in 1991. That night I realized that my hero had founded her movement on her own deep inner wounds, and here she was still wounded, very fragile. That my guru had her own issues blew my mind (just read her book Revolution from Within).

All your guru’s be it spiritual, religious, marketing, business, fitness are wounded– the gift of the wound is the blessing they came to teach and share. But don’t put them on a pedestal and think they are better than you. They just know something you need to learn at the moment. Let them teach you. Let them inspire you. Don’t forsake yourself and give your power away. Stand in your sovereignty…claim your voice, speak up- be a ballsy chick.

Each of us needs to find and own the parts of ourselves that went to sleep, that weren’t danced and celebrated- male and female alike. We see this all over the media. The revolution starts from within and leads to the gifts you came to share. My wish is you claim them now.

Any woman who chooses to behave like a full human being should be warned that the armies of the status quo will treat her as something of a dirty joke. That’s their natural and first weapon. She will need her sisterhood. -Gloria Steinem