It seems strong women took quite the metaphorical beating this week, myself included.
Saturday night, I sat on my friend’s apartment floor, willing UFC defending bantamweight champ Ronda Rousey to stay up or get Holly Holm on the ground to play her game. I was drenched in sweat from having just played roller derby in Bloomington, IN. I broke several speed limit reminders between Indy and Bloomington to make it back for this all important fight.
Coming into that night, Ronda was undefeated. She had taken down opponents in a matter of seconds in most cases. But, send a judo champion against a boxing champion and Holly Holm came away victorious in the end. Which then led to Ronda taking a beating again, this time in the court of public opinion.
It took her years to chock up a loss. That’s something very few athletes can say. UFC Female fighters who’d had shots with Rousey spoke up on social media and brought the term “sour grapes” back to the forefront of the worldwide lexicon. Wait, didn’t you lose to her….twice?
The only person you’re always competing against is yourself. If you fought Rousey and lost, be glad for the opportunity and take away what you learned. Don’t be a dick about it.
Then, there’s Caitlyn Jenner. She won some Glamour Magazine award for being a “Woman of the Year.” Here is my problem–she didn’t do anything particularly spectacular, other than being her true self after 60+ years on the planet. Which is great, but when your main claim to fame is an Olympic medal once upon a time and a seriously dysfunctional, overly entitled Brady Bunch-esque family (including being on TV), then you have to wonder about that choice. Essentially, she’s famous for doing…not a whole lot, something the current culture seems to suck up like a pixie stick of sugary brain goo. I have been blessed to meet many trans people who are doing wonderful things for their respective communities and had to struggle far harder than Cait ever will because of their circumstances. I do respect her for her strength of character and becoming who she has always been inside. I just don’t think she deserves an award for it. Unless I’m missing something, Caitlyn is kind-of a fame whore. I know that may seem harsh, but it also seems pretty close to the truth.
The truth hurts.
It’s a lesson I continue to learn over time. I am struggling in my own right these days, as I continue to try and convince the world that I am a decent writer and capable of more. I learn fast, which people don’t seem to understand or comprehend. I am not senile yet and I’m sure as hell not done with my professional goals yet. Every time I get told “no,” it makes me want to fight harder.
My overarching theme is don’t be dicks to each other. Show compassion and show you care. A strong woman doesn’t bash people or take credit when they haven’t earned something–they revel in the success of their co-horts and celebrate life. You don’t know someone’s back story just because you follow them on Twitter. Life is far more complex than that.