“We are what we pretend to be.”
Pretend to be a kind, confident, in control person – the world will catch up. Pretend that you’re going to fail everything you do – you will.
My mom. Still trying to pretend what I want, but she was on the money.
Don’t wait until you hate him to leave.
When I was at the 2017 women’s march in D.C., my mom had to be in a wheelchair, and whoever was pushing her often had to apologize for nearly bumping into someone or needing to scurry past. Near the Washington Memorial a woman I apologized to turned around, looked me in the eyes, and said, “No more “sorry”s! Women apologize enough, it’s time to stop being sorry.” She got a full look at me and my mom her chair. “You’re helping a disabled woman. You should never apologize for that. You don’t have to be polite!”
Due to habit, I kept saying sorry the rest of the day, but since then I’ve been trying to reserve my “sorry”s for when it’s truly necessary and I truly mean it. She’s right, women are all too often apologizing because we need to be more polite than anyone else. It’s time to stop being sorry.
I was at a support group and a woman said, “Why do I rent out spaces of my heart to people that aren’t here anymore?” As a child I was molested and developed unhealthy relationships as a result. It inspired me to get help and focus on healing.
“You can sit on your pity potty for as long as you want—- but always flush when you get up” —my lovely English teacher (who originally heard it from her grandmother)
My mother is a wise woman indeed. Her best advice she ever gave me with regards to relationships was and still is “Never Settle” two simple words that mean so much. Never settle for being with someone just so you aren’t alone. Never settle for just average. Never settle for anything less than what you deem perfect for you.
I got pregnant at 20 and obviously it was quite an emotional crisis, and I had an impossible decision to make. Well, my mom gave me this piece of advice that really set me at ease. She said: “Nobody – no matter how old they are – is ready to have a baby. When you’re ‘too’ young, you’ll have a hard time establishing a career. When you’re the ‘right’ age, you’ll have a hard time maintaining a career. And when you’re older, a baby will totally upend your 20-year routine.”
And I can tell you as somebody on the other side of “scared shitless”: this advice was 100% correct. Ain’t none of us know what we’re doing. The decision is the hardest part, and you’ll figure it out on the fly like the rest of us. Leave logic at the door and go with your heart.
My mom always says the Bible never said anything about being someone’s doormat. Aka respect the Golden Rule but know how to stick up for and advocate for yourself!
My favorite teacher in high school, Mrs. Cobb, told us “Get used to being alone.” It sounds harsh, but she didn’t say it to be mean or shady! She explained that there were going to be times in our lives where we didn’t have parents, friends, or lovers to guide us or shelter us. We had to learn to enjoy and love ourselves fully as individuals in order to lead fulfilling and meaningful lives. I’ve remembered that lesson of hers far longer than her Spanish lessons!
If you’re ever in a situation where you don’t know if you should tell someone about something (like spinach in teeth, a spill on their shirt, etc.), follow the “slip rule” passed down to me from my grandma and mom:
If there’s something that can be done in the moment, like pulling up the slip of a skirt, removing spinach from teeth, or fixing a lipstick smear then absolutely tell them, regardless of how well you know the person. If a kind stranger stops me from walking around with horrendously smeared lipstick, then bless them.
If there’s nothing to be done (like a shirt stain that has set), don’t frazzle someone unnecessarily. They’ll just stress about it.
No matter how well you know someone, if something can be fixed, then tell them! Girls gotta look out for each other!
My mom says you should always be able to make and manage your own money – it’s the key to independence. Even if you’re married and share financial responsibilities, you should be able to stand on your own two feet if you need to. Women have been kept down, and kept in bad relationships, for centuries because of their financial dependence on men.