Women’s March 2018 Prep Selfie

This is written in allegiance to women everywhere, in every corner or inch of space they exist. And this is especially in honor of tomorrow, where I will walk in sunlight and shine brightly, doing my part to stamp out darkness during the Women’s March Los Angeles January 20, 2018.

There are women and men and people of all genders and ages coming together this weekend in solidarity to show their support for what is inside every single one of us — grace. All you have to do is choose it. There are a few not choosing so wisely, so we’ll gather to show them the other side of the coin.

I had so many titles for this blog story. Oddly, as much as I really love a good title, I’ve not had that as the easiest or focal point prior. However, there are so many juicy bits of what this sharing is meant to convey for you, about me, about my feelings about me and women and mankind and all kinds between. I considered “Voices Carry”, but this movement isn’t strictly about voices. It’s about the voiceless, along with those who have been brave. I considered “No Time Like the Present”, but then I quickly did the math to note this uprising is hardly our first (for women, in America, in the world). Time is certainly up. It has been, over and over and again.

Then I contemplated a dedication title. This was timely for me in so many ways, not in the least hearing the news of the passing of a woman I consider an icon for humanity, Dr. Mathilde Krim, Founding Chairman of the groundbreaking Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR). Now, here’s one of those moments my friends and family sometimes enjoy. When I speak about some Very Important People I’ve had the privilege to meet in my life. So, listening to public radio a couple eves ago, I was jolted to hear the poignant voice of a friend, and amfAR CEO, Kevin Frost discussing Dr. Krim’s passing at age 91. I wrote to Kevin with a tiny heartfelt remembrance of the value I recall in meeting Dr. Krim originally via Sharon Stone in my late 20’s. I was working as Sharon’s PA (Personal Assistant), herself another level of the dedication, Sharon serving as amfAR’s Global Campaign Chair. It was a time when I was inducted into a new wave of thinking and feeling about people I loved, many with whom I worked in the entertainment biz who were shunned by others due to this thing called AIDS. Both Sharon and Mathilde were these supreme forces of role model excellence. Their efforts were a blueprint, showing and daring me to support by simply paving the way in their footsteps of outwardly not treating anyone differently, in this case especially those with AIDS: hand holding, hugging and kissing those with AIDS, for all to see; engaging conversations both brash and loving; educating me and all around them, so we could educate others to allow for inclu-civility (I like to call it), not exclusivity. Such efforts will never cease. Mathilde’s reign is guiding us all. What a fine woman and specimen of devotion to humanity she was indeed. As well there is a pride (re)awakened in me from having walked the pace she and Sharon put forth for people like me, and you, to follow.

So, on this women high, what if a world of positive partnership is possible? What if we may get everyone in shape, our communities and countries, our planet, all by promoting equality and receiving prosperity? What if women were/are the catalyst? And what if it didn’t matter who the catalyst is, so much as we have one?

As I put on my red, white and blue (and maybe some pink) tomorrow and walk because I love you all, because I care about this place I love- Mother Earth, I ask that you take a moment to reflect on the goodness of at least one woman in your life. Maybe even tell her, and tell her why. One of the coolest aspects of women is their immense capacity for softness and spirit. We are fearful and fearless. We are heroines in coexistence with your heroes. Most of us wave a flag of duality without a second thought. I think that’s perfectly purrfect. We have this gift of alpha genius, and yet we can distill from quiet and create calm. Apply this idea to anything, but focus on women- If you only hear a roar, then you likely only reflect that same intensity. But if you use your roar when necessary and purr your way around other moments, I think you’ve found balance. That’s a key to life if I dare pronounce one.

In tribute to the Women’s March, womankind and the essence of how big our “if” is if you let us rejoice in it, I include a little ditty I wrote in spring 2007 for a best friend’s betrothal. I also include its compliment in inspiration, the original written by a man, a favorite poet of mine. I believe the goddesses among us, who are many of us, were placed here for specific reasons. I think now is one of the reasons coming to light. I am SO PROUD of the women I know who are honest, kind, valiant, intelligent, thoughtful, inclusive and caring, in the least. That is a humongous list, else I’d list every blooming one of them here!

May you linger in the love of these goddesses that surround you. And may each goddesses keep up their miraculous honoring of men and all others. The only way we do this right dear people is to do it together. Take that world! March on!

~~~

IF by Braden Kuhlman (circa 2007)

If at best your jeans are worn through when all about you

are wearing fancy gowns and casting away their eyes from you;

If you can peer deep into your own soul when others seek outward,

but take pity in their lack of comfort with themselves;

If you can be patient and proud of your timelessness,

or, be made the scapegoat and still care first for your strength,

or being the woman all other women love to hate,

and yet wear and walk yourself with grace;

If you can wander- and not let wanderlust get the best of you;

If you can be courageous- and not need the acknowledgement;

If you can love and lose, many times over

and never have regrets nor love those persons any less for it;

If you can bear witness to all that you place forth as you are,

sometimes so low you can hear the heartbeat of the Earths core

or admire the very things you shaped be accredited to another

and joyously keep paying it forward to mold others for their best;

If you can surround yourself with a coven of goddesses

and break free to seek the corners of the planet yet untouched,

and get lost, yet close your mind to feel their guiding light again

and never let fear pave your way instead of sunlight;

If you remember each day you are building the bridge of life

whose energy crosses space and time, never gone

and that these girlfriends you have chosen will not part

only to meet you in the next round to share the next journey;

If you can meet women all around the world and laugh the same,

or dance in Manolo heels- yet cast them quickly to tango barefoot;

If no woman no matter her salt can cause a break in your smile;

If you become the one we all look up to, but not too much;

If you can command silence as golden time

all the while breathing life into the every molecule of minutes-

Yours is Mother Earth, her blessings waiting for your picking,

And- of highest honor- you will be a true Goddess, my friend!

***

If by Rudyard Kipling

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or, being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream — and not make dreams your master;
If you can think — and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with triumph and disaster
And treat those two imposters just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on”;

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings — nor lose the common touch;
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run —
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And — which is more — you’ll be a Man my son!

LOVER of life. Especially people, places, philanthropy and photography.

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