“You can’t stay in your corner of the Forest waiting for others to come to you. You have to go to them sometimes.”
(That was Winnie the Pooh, in case you were wondering.)
It’s a struggle for me to get out from under the covers of comfort.
Comfort –a state of physical ease and freedom from pain or constraint
That might the most pleasant sounding description I’ve ever come across. That comfort of white sheets and keyboard clicking and a baby tucked up by my side. That comfort of not having to make conversation beyond
“yes, you’re right! That’s a ball.”
“yes, that’s a ball as well.”
“that’s a circle but a circle sort of looks like a ball.”
Home is just so kind to me sometimes.
Well, forgiving is probably a more accurate account.
It’s last April, I start to write and I realize there’s no escaping the need to network. So, I do my due diligence and I go out alone to mingle. By some sort of blogger networking sorcery, I enjoy it. I meet such charming women. We drink coffee into the late hours (that being 9pm). We talk books and pregnancy (but honestly, mostly dogs) over a good meal here and there.
A few of us decide to attend the upcoming Blog Podium conference in Toronto together and we start to see each other more often. We grab dinners, attend events and plan together.
Somehow, I find that it’s much more comfortable than the keyboard clicking alone at home, even with a good candle. (Maybe not more comfortable than the sheets or the baby but no one can fault a girl for loving sleep and the smell of baby shampoo.)
The more women that offer me a seat at their table, the more I realize how, even I underestimate the ability of women to empower one another. We’ve been taught that women are our rivals. That the hierarchy of women is based on looks and the ability to snag a boyfriend.
But, I find that if we can push that internalized rivalry aside, friendships between women can be an incredible act of feminism.
There’s something electric in a room when women sit together sharing stories and offering advice without competition. There’s something about women nudging and empowering other women to work out their goals when the cards are so often stacked against us.
Suddenly, our goals don’t look quite as unfeasible. Suddenly, you realize that women climbing after their dreams are fighting a battle for all of us. You see yourself in these women and you know that if one of us succeeds, it makes a way for all of us.
“So, you’re all in it together.” They might say.
In his book “Into the Wild” Jon Kraukauer says “It’s not always necessary to be strong but to feel strong.”
and although we may differ on our definition of strength, to feel strong or empowered is an essential tool for women in a world where strength is ultimately considered a man’s trait.
But I’ve come to understand that sometimes it’s difficult to find strength or feel strength when you find yourself alone. No matter how comfortable it may seem to tuck in under those covers.
I’ve also come to understand that there is strength in numbers.
And after all, Isn’t that what we all want? To fight our battles with a few hands to hold and a few voices to cheer.
So, over coffee and doughnuts, notepads and laptops. Over events, networking and the inevitable blogging burnout, I’m happy it’s your hands I get to hold, my beautiful, strong friends.
Then check out Diana from 204 Park‘s post all about hosting. (She was the perfect hostess who put together this unreal brunch.)
After that catch up With Justine to hear about her blog’s 1st year anniversary and the YEG community she’s become a part of.
All photos are snapped by Sharon Litchfield and edited by me.