Sisterhood is a hard topic for me to write about. I don’t have a great grasp on what it is and what is has meant for others. Having said that, I had a the time to think about it over the last few weeks and I have realized that it has been a large part of my upbringing. Over time, it has come to mean very different things to me.
To start the journey with sisterhood, I could say that my idea of it started off as being part the girls, part of the pack, or the feminist movement. While growing up, it made me feel part of something.
As a gay woman, my sisterhood has been my family. They were a group of people who got what it means to be different. With them, I had someone to sit talk with who could understand me. I had people to hang out with that had similar experience as I did. This type of sisterhood offered a sense of security and I have found that being part of it got me through many things in my life.
The main things we rallied for were equality and the right to love freely and be with whomever we desired. At that point in my life, sisterhood was defined by the group of gay women around me, and unfortunately, being gay was illegal where I lived. We were subjected to many horrible things due to this and this made our family, our connections and our communities even stronger.
I got a little older and I moved away from the country I was in to settle somewhere else. There, I grew into my own space where sisterhood was still strong in my mind and in my relationships. However, since I no longer had to fight so hard to always be aware of myself and my surroundings, it started to meant something different.
Now it was having and being a sister. I only have one sister, Lee, and we were always there for each other no matter what. As kids we spent most of our time with each other. We played with the same friends, and despite all the fights and squabbles, we always had a lot of fun together. I can look back on time spent with Lee as some of my fondest memories of my childhood.
Unfortunately, Lee has since passed away. Just over 2 years ago, she was diagnosed with cancer. The road was long and hard for her, and I attempted to be there for her as much as I could even though we were both living in different cities. Nonetheless, I felt like a failure as a sister because I couldn’t be there 24/7. She had three children that needed love and attention, but I just wanted to be by her side.
My sister was my person, and she was going through more that I could ever imagine and I couldn’t stop it, prevent it or make it any easier for her. This not only challenged the whole meaning of sisterhood for me, but for life in general.
Now that she is no longer suffering, I am able to breathe, take a step back and look at her. We are still connected and part of each other, it's just different. I see now that she never had the point of view that I couldn’t help her. She was grateful for the time I took just to be with her.
It’s a few months after her loss and through pain of losing her, this odd little word has changed for me again. The connection with others and being present with someone is what I find joy in. I have found in the past that when you are not present you cannot always see the amazing things surrounding you. This can make you think things that are not necessarily true, and perhaps behave in a way that is maybe too reactive or unkind.
So be kind to other woman, no matter what your point of view is about them or their situation. Women can sometimes ostracize each other without thinking, and I have never really understood that.
If you are one of those people, maybe it's time to try something different. Try to see what we can create by bringing a different energy. Would you be willing to transform your insecurity, your point of view, and your judgements into kindness? Make the effort to be kind to a woman without any expectations and not out of pity or anything else, just pure kindness. Would you be willing to try this for once a week for the next month to see what it can create? It may surprise you.
Megan Rogers is a facilitator, motivation coach, and a body process practitioners from Cape Town, South Africa. She aspires to step up and demand the change that is required for herself, the world, and you, to be happy. She loves the ocean, being outdoors, and the change people are willing to be and do to save the planet and be more themselves. You can find more content from Megan at www.consciouslycrazychicks.com.