Okay. This is going to be a short post. I wasn’t actually going to write anything about this topic at all, but people are petty and I have opinions, so here we go:
I know that I’m late on jumping into the Caitlyn Jenner thing, but that’s because I really didn’t want to jump into the conversation at all. As you’ve probably figured out from some of my previous posts, I really REALLY hate celebrity news. There are lots and lots of incredible men and women who do the same things as celebrities, but no one pays attention to that because they’re not famous. So I try to stay out of it. I try to celebrate people that deserve celebration and not add onto the insanity of the American paparazzi. But recently my facebook page has been flooded with things like this:
Here’s the thing: Bravery is not a goddamned contest. If someone does something that scares them or that’s difficult to do, then that makes them brave. It doesn’t make someone else a “better” or more “real” person because their acts of bravery are different. All of the examples of women in the text above are very good examples of courage. I, however, have never had to face any of them. Am I not a real woman, then, since my small acts of bravery each day are not held to the arbitrary standards that this woman has set? If so, I’m not really sure I’ve ever met more than a handful of “real” women in my life.
We always tell our children to find themselves and follow their hearts. Hell, every Disney movie in creation is basically about just that. We live in a culture where we encourage our children from birth that being themselves in more important than anything else in the world, and that being true to who they are should be held as a higher aspiration than any job, spouse, or dream they can imagine.
I know a lot of people who have given up on themselves so they could work a tedious 9-5 job and pay for a life that looks good on paper but has no real sustenance in it. I know a lot of people who have forgotten about the truths they learned as children and who have stopped trying to find themselves in the havoc that is our lives. In a world where we all live in fabricated hell holes of our own choosing while still declaring to our children that they need to be true to themselves, Caitlyn Jenner has actually done so.
So, as far as I’m concerned, she’s a stronger woman than I am. And a stronger person than most of the people I’ve ever met. Good on you, Caitlyn.