Come Together

Happy Thursday everybody!

I apologize for the lack of a Tuesday post. There is a post that I would like to delve further into and I wanted a couple of extra days to ponder what exactly I want to write.

However, since the snow days were over it feels as though time flew! Between work, my stage managing commitments this weekend and pool, time has passed way too quickly. Tuesday night I actually just did laundry and watched some more Jane The Virgin. I just wanted to veg!

veg

I wanted to write about the amazing experience I had this weekend working with the amazing women on The Vagina Monologues. I originally watched Eve Ensler’s The Vagina Monologues years ago on HBO. However a friend of mine from university is on the board for St. John’s V-Day and directs a production of The Vagina Monologues every year. I have attended some shows over the years and always wanted to be involved somehow. 

I’ve been missing the theatre. I’ve been missing plays and even just the idea of going to a theatre, sitting down, and watching a live production. I miss everything the behind the scenes. So when I had the opportunity before Christmas to talk to her, I told my friend that when she is working on The Vagina Monologues this year to reach out and that I would love to help out in any way that I can.

I admit… I actually would have loved to audition for the production this year. But, as usual, two things were stopping me:

  1. My own fear of failure
  2. I had the flu and I didn’t want to snot over anyone 🙂

With that said, it worked out. I actually really enjoy stage managing and helping the actors with their lines and helping plan the layout of the production.

kitty

This experience was eye-opening to say the least. I had the opportunity to get to know people I have known for years on a bigger scale, ladies that I have only heard of in local theatre that I never had the chance to meet before, and I had the blessing to meet and to be in the presence of an amazing cast and crew of women.

Our production of The Vagina Monologues was in support of V-Day St. John’s, a non-profit organization who is all about educating everyone about the realities that women and young girls face around the world. Through V-Day there are initiatives all around the world that are pushing back against the violence and physical, mental, and sexual abuse that women and young girls experience every day. Initiatives to bring to light to the work that is still out there for humans to do to treat each other with the respect that they deserve.

Because of these initiatives, before each show we would come together and speak to the group and tell everyone how our vaginas are feeling. It’s just a fun way to get the word vagina in there and speak from the heart about how we were feeling and why we wanted to be a part of the show. These women shared stories about their experiences with assault (both physical and sexual), rape, violence, abuse, and how these situations have affected them throughout the years. And as one of the lines in the monologues, “and we are considered to be in a civilized society.”

eve
We all were part of this show because we want to get the message out to the world that there is work that needs to be done. We need women to take a stand and fight for their rights as not only women but human beings. We need men to realize that women are indeed human beings and everyone of every gender, race, religion deserves respect. I want to live in a world where I can leave my house after dark and not have the fear of being mugged or assaulted.

A colleague of mine that is living here from Bangladesh and I were elaborating on a prior discussion that took place in training and she says that in her community women were fearful to be outside after dark due to fear of being abused or even kidnapped. She said she knew a girl who went missing a couple of years ago never to be seen again. The assumption is that this young girl was sold into slavery or into the sex trade. However, unfortunately, we will never know.

Over the past two weeks I have heard stories that have broken my heart. I have been lucky in my time. It really makes me think about my past and how blessed I am to have been born into a loving, nuclear family, I found S.O. when I did… I’m just lucky. Very lucky. And really, from the stories I have heard over the years, that is really all it is, luck. I take precautions. For example, if I am going out alone I text S.O. so he knows where I was on my way to in case he doesn’t hear from me. If possible I will call him and talk on my phone to deter any type of harassment. However, I’m not naive. If someone is going to attack they will do it no matter what type of barriers you have up.

Now, more than ever, we need people, women and men, standing together and fighting for equality instead of fighting each other. We need people to be educated that violence and assault in any form is unacceptable, especially to those who cannot fight back. We just need decent human beings in this world that will show kindness and respect to each other no matter what genitalia is under their clothes.

So, how’s my vagina feeling today? Well, tired, happy to get this off its chest, and anxious about sharing how my vagina is feeling to everybody! HAHA.

I leave you with one of my favorite quotes from one of my favorite ladies:

betty
This is the moment where I bid you all adieu.

Cheers and Stay Smiling!

DO.

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