Friday, July 29, 2011
Chapter 20: Solidarity and this idea of sisterhood~
I was thinking about the people in my life who are the closest to me. Who are the people in my inner circle? Who are my confidantes? Who are the people I can count on when I am in a jam? Who picks me up when I am down? Who do I trust with my life story? Who do I trust with my life? Who do I trust with you? I was at a friend’s house—a woman who is definitely in my front row. I was resting on her bed and something made me get up to read quotes and affirmations on her board in her home office. I came across this beautiful quote:
“Observe the relationships around you. Pay attention to: Which ones lift and which ones lean? Which ones encourage and which ones discourage? Which ones are on a path of growth uphill and which ones are going downhill? When you leave certain people, do you feel better or feel worse?” Author Unknown
Who is in your inner circle? What are the circles you run with? How do you decide who sits in our inner circle? I have several circles… there are my NYC girls who have been here for me through it all, the “purging party” at my house where we threw out 35 bags of trash and donated 15 bags. These are the friend’s who bring me nourishment and love while I work, wipe my tears when I am in pain and are my constant sources of strength. My cousins who are like my sisters their faith in me is beyond words. Then there is the constant presence of my your abuela, abuelo, Tia Josie, Tia Fabiana, and Tio Fabio who are my biggest supporters… they are the people who know me the best… who would die for me. There are people who love me sight unseen. They love me flaws and all. There are countless aunts and uncles who I love dearly. The NYCLWG are my sacred writing sisters. Then there is the circle of you and my relationship with Luz. You two are the closest to female soul mates I have ever had.
The people in my TRUE circle want nothing from me but what I am willing to share. They take me as I am. How do we pick who’s allowed in our inner circle? I think for me there is one constant. The deciding factor is… do you come in LOVE? I am less concerned with having an EXCLUSIVE inner circle with only the SELECT few who make the cut automatically because we share a bloodline. I have met people recently that I love deeply. While I do have a small circle of people I go to FIRST. I am more inclined these days to have a circle of LOVE. Luz taught me how to have a true friendship with a woman. In NYC I was searching for sisterhood and solidarity. Solidarity is a union or fellowship built from common responsibilities and interests shared between groups of people. Sisterhood is an association of women for a common cause. I was looking for unity within my community of women. I wanted a sense of oneness in my connections.
"A friend is a person who dislikes the same people you do." --anonymous
Who is in your inner circle? Who do you trust with your deepest/darkest secrets? Who has seen you at your worst and at your best? Who is your confidant? When I met my spiritual soul mate I was in college in the early 90's. Luz’s version of our story is that some woman called the psychology department where she worked to get information and was extremely rude, pushy and arrogant. That woman calling her was me. When we met I was insecure. Luz was vibrant, confidant and incredibly interesting. She quickly became my smoking buddy and best friend. We hit it off immediately. She was exactly the person sent to me to walk with on this journey of self discovery. We spent hours talking about life, love, men, sex, spirituality, art and MUSIC… the first time I really heard Ella Fitzgerald was with her.
We talked about what my issue was when I called the school that day and why I was so rude to her. So many years later I wondered myself about that and tried to answer that question. What was it about where I was in my life that had me so angry? What was I afraid she was going to take from me? Why didn't I trust her intention? Why didn't I trust her truth immediately? What scared me about her strength? Was I envious or jealous of her and this thing she possessed and walked with that words can't describe?
While I was taking self inventory… the immediate answer was that I wanted some of what she possessed. She taught me that there is always a reason people come into your life and these reason may not be revealed immediately, but that there was always a reason and a lesson to be learned from everyone. There were even lessons from people we may not like. During the time when we met I was in a place in my life where I was searching for an outlet. I needed something different. I wasn't happy. I needed a place to retreat to and my relationship with this woman was very sacred and special to me. I would always protect our friendship with everything that I am.
We used to say that if we were lesbians we would be married. We joked like that all the time. But the reality is that we do have a union. We have a bond that is unbreakable. We have an unshakable connection that no man or woman could ever sever and people have tried. People come into our lives for a reason… some will show up who do not have the best intentions. Some will show up with ulterior motives. There are people who never show us who they are. Then there are those who enter our lives just to share love, life and wisdom expecting nothing in return. These people who have so much love, that it just overflows. And if you have never experienced this kind of love you don’t know how to receive it. If you’ve never loved yourself this deeply it makes sense that you would definitely not trust it. If you have never known unconditional love then you wouldn’t know how to recognize it when it shows up. There are people who exist who will NEVER judge you and love you no matter what you do. These people are gifts to the world. These are the people who come into our lives JUST for the sole purpose of leaving gifts expecting nothing in return. My spiritual soul mate is one of these people.
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Peace, light and LOVE~