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What do you LOVE…

September 18, 2009

The other evening I was driving my older daughter Starshine (10yrs.) to soccer practice… although she has played with Britannia’s Micro Footie program for many years this is the first year she has wanted to play soccer in the winter season… her school friends are playing and now so is she… the fathers of two of her classmates are the coaches… I commend them for the important work they are doing with their daughters and their daughters’ friends… we are witnessing a new generation of girls who are being raised and loved by sensitive and caring men and it can only do a world of good…

for ALL of us…

The whole experience is a good opportunity for study… as a teacher I was always on the side of being observed and now as a parent I can see how other people in the world operate when they are guiding and working with children… as I watch I reflect on my own past actions… and I learn how I want or don’t want to be… using the stuff which presents itself as alchemical material…

As the girls chirped in a frenzy about their uniforms and which positions they wanted, hated, or would refuse, I heard the head coach say, with his authentic French accent making me wish I had a Riedel Overture glass full of Joie Farm 2008 Rose and a plate of moules et frites on that Van Tech astroturf,

“You will get ze uniforms but what I want to know right now ez what do you love…

what do you love to play…

you will all get a turn in each position because we want you to develop your abilities in all ze areas…

but sit for a minute and think about zis…

What do you LOVE???”

I weep because it is true…

When do you ever remember anyone, let alone an adult, asking you, as a ten year old girl… or boy for that matter…

What do YOU love??? 

It wasn’t until I was thirty-seven that I actually sat down and thought and felt and then wrote a list of

THINGS THAT I LOVE… and then put it up on my fridge… so that I would remember…

And as I watched this small group of ten year old girls I remembered myself… the coaches could hardly get a word in edgewise and the girls were flashing looks back and forth to each other in secret code… a language only they can understand but everyone else around them can feel… I remember running into my elementary school teachers who had now become district colleagues and sensing their discomfort, or fear, in my presence… one would say to me… “It was like you could look right through me and I had no place to hide… and then there were the times when you and your best friend fixed your ‘evil eyes’ on me and I was paralyzed…”

I told her that I was always looking for congruency in the adult world which surrounded me and I could never find it… I often still can’t… and when you can’t find what you know deep inside… when you can’t see or find what you’re longing for the frustration can make you mean…

It takes discipline and guidance to know how to use your power for good… and discipline and guidance with our power is not something we get a lot of in our culture… as girls or women… boys or men… I just flipped through British Columbia’s Lifestyle magazine that I found as an insert in the Globe and Mail and I felt sad for what it shows… I felt shame for the lack of consciousness our surface way of living impacts the younger generations for whom we are responsible…

With Kim Cattrall and the words on growing up in B.C. and Strong Female Roles on the cover I had a small hope that I would find something interesting in between the glossy sheets of this Canadian Publication… but it was the same old… and I wondered how it is that this display of plastic continues to hold value… putting ourselves under the knife to look like, and live like, who? Kim who at 53 is described by the writer Julia Le Conte as being SO excited to get back on the set for filming of Sex in the City 2… downright giddy about the show’s writing, the romance of the big apple, the clothing and the fun… 

I can appreciate a great outfit but Good Lord…

All beside herself to play a woman who in her forties had more men through her bedroom in six season’s than her best friend’s collection of Manolo Blahniks… the epitome of self-confidence, a female trait sorely lacking in the male-dependent, body conscious female prototypes we see too often on the big and small screens…

If a true display of female power, self-confidence, and sexual liberation, is still measured by indifference towards marriage and how many tusks you allow into your temple then we continue to require some hard and fast statistical analysis on our formulas… 

If  this sort of  appetite for life and experience with no slowing down anytime soon is really what inspires a lot of women then we need another think coming…

This sort of Mediated activity is far from inspirational… it is junk masking itself as food… and my soul wants something more to sinks its teeth into…

It doesn’t matter if you’re man or woman, laying on your back in the cab of a dirty old pick-up with Alberta plates or if you’re being bent over a bathroom counter in a fancy hotel as pay back for that Gotham Steak House dinner… the story is all the same… and when you are fully actualized and consciously placing yourself in position by the choice and freedom you have taken back, you change yourself, and potentially those around you, into a story that equates with being a true role model and a self-confident person of power…

a story like Daphne Odjig, in communion with Chester Beavon…

and Great Spirit…

Just off the phone with Starshine’s Coach Joe (he likes it when I call him Coach Joe because as he says, It helps solidify my identity)

I debrief our conversation in my mind…

After I complimented him for taking on the job and beginning the season by doing it well, because I know how tough ten year old girls can be…

he told me,

Philosophydoll, you have no idea how difficult this is… I compare it to the experience of coaching my son’s team, which was a piece of cake… with my daughter’s team it is like being around a whole other species… this role of coach reveals more complication by the minute…

there are things I just never knew I was signing up for…

I think but don’t say,

I’ll be there to help you…

every step of the way…

without saying a word…

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