I hate drama. I have been known to lack sensitivity. I am alarmingly sarcastic. Thus, my young and naïve brain decided that I was not going to have many girl friends because we would simply not get along. I was going to be friends with boys, and that was that.
I did not know what I was missing.
Toward the end of high school, I developed some of my strongest friendships with womxn who were shockingly supportive, hilarious, down-to-earth, and caring. We still talk every week. I finally began to realize that my misconceptions were embarrassingly stereotyped and not a reflection of what I actually knew. Great womxn exist everywhere. How did I not see it before?!
I went to college, now knowing that I was capable of having friendships with amazing womxn, and knowing that womxn were so much more than the stereotypes that I bought into. However, I still told myself that under no circumstances would I go through sorority recruitment.
I am now in a sorority. And I could not be happier.
Long story short, when I was younger, I bought into the stereotypes of womxn, and I thought having guy friends would somehow be easier. But now, I cannot imagine my life without the many womxn who are in it who give me strength, love, confidence, and endless laughs. Here are some things that my girl friends have taught me:
It’s ok to be vulnerable (and have feelings)!
I have struggled with sensitivity and vulnerability, and I still have a hard time with processing and expressing emotions. My best friends and sisters have shown me that being vulnerable is beautiful and valued. Surrounding myself with strong womxn who can also be vulnerable has taught me that being authentic and open brings people closer together. My perspective on emotion has been completely flipped because of this. By opening myself up, I was able to connect to amazing womxn whom I previously sheltered myself from. Big mistake. Big. HUGE.
Womxn are strong, and everyone should know it.
The strongest people I know are womxn. The amount of adversity that so many womxn have to face is astonishing. We are resilient and brave, and it is often hard to tell the difficulties we go through. Surrounding myself with strong womxn has made me feel stronger and more confident. Womxn are badass. Womxn are warriors. We can come back from anything.
Your true self is your best self.
Sorry to those of you that gagged at this cheesy line. But from my experience, this could not be truer. My girl friends have given me their true selves, and this has encouraged me to be myself. I have never felt more comfortable in my own skin. They are real with me, authentic, and they are nothing that I had previously pinned womxn to be. I am not proud of what I used to believe, but I cannot be happier that I do not believe this anymore. I have never felt more cared for or supported. I didn’t even know what I was missing.
I am not saying that womxn are better than men. But women are not to be “truffled” with (to quote Michael Scott). My girl friends have taught me to be comfortable in my own skin, to be my true self, to be vulnerable, and to be strong in times of weakness. I owe who I am today to the womxn friendships I have in my life.
This one’s for my girls. I couldn’t be me without you, and I am so grateful.
Cover image source: Pexels, Tatiana Vavrikova