We recently developed a mutually admired internet friendship with Meredith, an incredibly insightful mother-poet-photographer-artist who we asked to share verbal and visual musings with us.
What manifested is something we don't talk about enough: women and the complexity of our emotions - rage, guilt, shame, and beauty.
"book after book. piece after literary piece i read that makes me more angry. more enraged with the way women have been and are treated. with the way we are belittled and put in boxes and seen as child making machines or slutty pieces of flesh to be conquered. conquered and raped and taken as prizes or thrown away like garbage. i fall in line so many times to the status quo. i hate that. i see my body as needing to be fixed, my life as needing to be made something of, my day to day as needing to clean or be manicured. and the thing is, i also see myself as taking more control of my life and my thoughts and my body than i ever have before. i see myself as beautiful, but still the standards of beauty are that of men made up for me that i feel i am reaching. let my stomach be squishy and call that the most beautiful part of me, let my breasts have stretch marks and be my most desirable trait to myself. let my eyes have circles under them and see the utter grace and loveliness in them for those eyes have been up all night watching and caring for my daughter. and let me look in the mirror and know that my eyes have never been more loved and cared for, because i will care for them myself. when i am at a state where all the things that go against the beauty standards set in place by men and for men are my most favored attributes about myself maybe then is when i will be doing something worthwhile. but no, even that thinking, that i am not doing something worthwhile unless i am DOING something is problematic. doing doing doing. fuck that. i am being - here, alive, breathing, thinking. i am just being and that makes me so worthy of life. i will DO the more i let myself BE. and maybe both these things are true. needing to love every inch of me without holding any of me to a standard. and the thing is i do fall into that standard of beauty. i am thin, i am white, my skin clear, my face symmetrical. how do i fuck the beauty standard when i fall into it? how is this something i talk about when my body is what it is? but the thing with this “standard” is that actually none of us fall into it, we all find parts of ourselves that are “messed up” or “ugly” and i am so fucking tired of that."