The Cinderella Slipper
Written By: Schenina Darlington
We have seen for a long time that our societies reach our girls, but our girls do not get to reach out to society. We watch as the foundations that we have worked hard to build, are subjugated to the desires and wills of others. We are made to watch in horror as they are mutilated and corrupted until there are but fragments of the original. They peel off our names and replace it with theirs, and when asked about these great creations, they chalk it up to innovation. Taking credit for our accomplishments. We watch as our girls become women, and move from Yes Mom, No Dad to Yes Ma’am No sir; slaves to formalities and traditions that should have fallen away long ago.When we are girls we are taught to braid our hair back, then we become women and are told to wear our hair flat. We are expected to do it better, climb higher and reach further. We grow up being taught to carry the world on our shoulders, that it is ours for the taking. But that we are to carry it without complaint, we are to hide how we feel, deny our limitations and the most important teaching: NEVER EVER show signs of weakness. And one day we fall…and the weight of the world comes crashing down upon us. The first things we hear is that it is our fault for not being cautious.
One day we wake up and think to ourselves what a terrible dream. We turn to the windows and see that the world is exactly how we had seen. We pick up our children and move forward, creating a space for them to grow in. We wake them up and tell them that it is okay not to be okay. We tell them that it holds merit to be afraid. We tell them that it is not true that the world is for the taking. We tell them that we are not gods and no hand in creation. We encourage them live alongside nature, and that it is an honour to evolve with it. We teach them to respond to love with love, and hate with education. We teach them to look at history with a measure of scrutiny, but look to our experiences with profound reverence. We teach them to utilize the materials they are given, achieve those that they are not. Fight for want you not and be unapologetic about working their way to the top. Admit when they are wrong, and smile when they are right. We teach them that their most important contribution to humanity is to show that our limitations will not always defeat us, our experiences will continue to shape us, and our strength makes everyonestronger. Fear can be created by ignorance, and ignorance can fuel violence, but we can educate and empower ourselves and when we do, the moon seems to glow a bit brighter.