The Independent Woman

 

Dear Independent Women,

I have been like the rest of any number of woman across the nation, bouncin’ along in my nearly paid off car, headed to my nearly paid off house, letting my independence scream through my speakers at all who dared to look my way. 

If any questioning, threat of questioning, or even just look of questioning came along I’ve been the first to point my index finger high in the air and spew all types of intelligent information about how I’m an Independent Woman and proud of it and (now my hands are on my hips).  I’d go on to run down the ways Independent Woman don’t get the respect they deserve for being so Independent (ending with a pointed crossing of the arms and the smug look). You would walk away shamed to silence and I’d hop back into my ride, turn my music back up and head off to that second job so I can pay my bills on schedule. I’ve been a bad broad.

Then I looked at myself one day, I mean really examined myself and it’s not that being an Independent Woman is a bad thing, it’s the I-don’t-need-no-man attitude that has been detrimental to us as a gender, society as a unit and is working to emasculate men daily.  Now I understand, not everyone is waiting on prince charming to come rescue them out of deep sleep with a gentle kiss to the lips. 

In fact, let’s go back to basics, wasn’t Adam the one sleeping, the one who awoke to find himself complete when he found the love of his life gazing back at him? Wasn’t it Adam who said “Finally!” as soon as he recognized the woman God had created for him? No one is denying us of our Independence, even in the Beginning there was a point when Evie Eve needed to be molded, shaped and formed without the active interaction of Adam.  We just have to keep things in perspective, if OUR Adam has yet to awake, that can simply mean we are still being worked on.

But Ladies, Adam is not going to sleep forever, and when he does wake up his first task will be to name us, and I don’t think he’ll be calling you Ms. Independent. Admitting that we long for the moment we’ll be able to say, “I’m Adam’s Eve” doesn’t strip us of any of that Independence. Even with Adam and Eve side-by-side as the first dynamic duo we’re suffering because of the Fall. Just imagine if Eve had seen Adam sleeping, decided he ain’t but a lazy good-for-nothin’ bum, kicked on her Gucci heels and set out to permanently be her own Boss.  Just imagine…

Independent, yes. In isolation, no.  Sometimes it’s difficult to separate the two.  Being an Independent Woman is a combination of environment and the way we’re wired.  Generations of women before us have created family systems for themselves that consisted of a husband, two and a half kids, a dog and a white picket fence.  Each generation of women gaining more independence than the next, trickling down to us.  I realize that my white picket fence might be a rod iron-gate outside of a brownstone, my two and a half kids might be five and my husband and I might be equal partners in breadwinning in our household but the point is that no amount of stoic proclamation of my independence can detract from the basics. 

Sarah obeyed Abraham and called him Lord (1 Peter 3: 6). Sarah, the same woman who has also been described by bible scholars as a risk-taker of the first order, a woman who said good-bye to everything familiar to travel to a land she knew nothing about.  A real flesh-and-blood kind of lady who lived an adventure more strenuous than any fairy-tale heroine. [1] Sound familiar? Sarah was an Independent Woman.

So, I turned my music down a little, lowered that finger, took my hands off my hips and began to gain perspective on the Independent Woman that I am.  Sarah needed Abraham, she was not needy for him.  We spend a lot of time complaining about the negativity that surrounds a woman that says “I got this” but in part it’s because we don’t fully understand how to balance our Independence ourselves.  We’ve gotten into the habit of treating relationships like they’re some kind of game. The closer you try to get to me, the more Independent of you I strive to be.

Yet, on my lunch break I’ll be watching a couple walk hand-in-hand through the park, wondering why that can’t be me, hasn’t been me in five years.  I brush off the romantic side of my nature with the justification that I’m an Independent Woman, I don’t have time for all that. Deep at my core I know that I am not a woman who can survive in isolation, nor are you, for it is not good for man to be alone (Genesis 2:18). Of course we know God was talking about Adam but let’s not white-out the next part of that very same sentence, “I will make a suitable helper for him, a companion.”  I’m not going to go too far beyond the scope of my understanding, but let me venture to say this: it was not good for man (Adam) to be alone so God created a suitable helper (Eve) for him, not for herself.  Doesn’t that mean, it wasn’t good for Eve to be alone either? Hmmm… yet, it’s only too obvious she wasn’t mindlessly trailing along in the Garden behind Adam because she did have time for an entire conversation with another man and was convinced into following his agenda.  But, that’s a segment for the next edition!

The realization I’ve come to is this: we are Independent Women.  However, we are also God’s creation and He created us in His image, one woman for one man.  Adam was sleeping Ladies, God did not consult him to say, “How would you like her? You can have it your way and from now on we’ll just call this part in history Burger King®.”. Yet, when he woke up Adam was instantly in love with what God had created for him. Eve wasn’t a shock to Adam, he was prepared for her, just like your man will be prepared for you, Independence and all.

Love Always,
Sunny 


[1] Spangler, A. (1999). Woman of the bible: 52 stories for prayer and reflection. Florida: Zondervan.

 

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