Yesterday the act of refusing stuck with me. How rarely it is actually used, especially by women. We tend to be the peace makers, the fixers, the pleasers and so we shy away from refusals in any form.
At least this was the kind of woman I was.
I was actually queen of keeping calm waters.
I know that I have almost PTSD moments when refusals are present.
The old habit of mine squirms uncomfortably as I resist being the peace keeper.
It is hard to watch someone refuse.
For, you know conflict is coming.
Each person is trying to be heard.
In the past, one of my bad relationship habits was silence. I would brood and give the cold shoulder. This I believe was due to not knowing how to express myself.
Not only express, but to stand by who I was.
It is hard to be in a conflict when you are in conflict of who you are.
I was a chameleon for so many years. I would go the way of peace keeping.
Whatever made the relationship flow better, that was the position I took.
When I didn't have the tools for standing up for me, I grew silent.
I would get mad at the other person, instead of expressing what was inside of me.
Now, I am much better at conflict, and getting real good at refusals.
I believe you have to have a firm image of who you are, OR who you are seeking to become, in order to stand opposed.
What I didn't realize until yesterday, that this ability to stand against, to refuse and oppose, is not in everyone's tool box. That it is a bold move and one that looks courageous from the outside.
It takes knowing who you are, and even more importantly, who you are not!
Refusing is the opposite of being a people pleaser and a pretend peace keeper. Cause if you are doing something just for the peace of it, more than likely it isn't what you truly would love to do.
I also thought, that it will rarely be the ones in power to refuse inequality or unfairness. What tips the scales of justice are the victims refusing to be a victim any longer.
The powerless find their own inner power and refuse!
This is a beautiful thing for me to watch happen. I love this. This is were my passion is.
The reason I love my quilts that show my inner evolution is how I grew by refusing.
Refusing to get back in line and to be silent.
For in that silence, lays a soul unexpressed.
My speaking out and being very open about abuse, is my refusal to be less than who I was born to be.
Refusing is positive, when it used to stand by your truth.
I refused to pretend.
I refused to overlook.
I refused to not embrace all of me.
By refusing to neglect the darkest part of me, I was able to accept and love me as I am.
There is no part of me and life that I refuse to accept.
Here is a quote I read at the Gala where I gave the keynote...
"The people who have lost their parents and families due to abuse deserve the utmost respect and support. These people have risked it all to heal and stand up for the truth. These people are heroes and angels who hold a horrific reality for everyone else. They have suffered and escaped, and for that, I bow my head in reverence." Rythea Lee