We all have a story to tell.

To make a difference in this world.

If there hadn’t been a war I wouldn’t be here. There would be a different person to tell this story. I wouldn’t be here to make a difference in this world. To shine a light on being a woman in this world; to guide us back to be the gorgeous women we are meant to be and no longer be defined by the patriarchal world. The male-dominated world.

To feel confident in being a woman in all her glory. Being stupendously herself in whatever way that is for her. To be the expression of herself and not what she thinks she should be. Nor what the world thinks she should be.

When you are born you have no idea what is in store for you. The family you are born into. What life will bring you? What story to tell.

Life is a total mystery for you to unfold into. For you to navigate your way often rudderless without an instruction booklet. With very little guidance from your own parents who had very little from their parents and grandparents.

Each generation has its own burdens to carry with its own rules and stories to tell or not be told. Its own prejudices with its own set of rules and laws, subjugation and diminution. Its domination that we as women carry from one generation to the next.

The patriarchal domination over women

Somewhere over the centuries, we learnt to accept life as it is. This patriarchal domination over us. This abuse, control and manipulation.

At what point did we stop being strong? Confident in who we are? The right to be in this world as equals with our strengths and weaknesses that complimented each other?

When did we stop being women and became doormats? Someone to be trodden on. Someone to be denigrated. Disrespected. Used and abused. Physically. Mentally. Spiritually. Sexually. Morally.

What happened to the women of the world? Women who were warriors in their own right. Who were equal to men and had a role to play in the world. Who had equal rights. Equal say. Equal right to life.

When did we lose sight of living in harmony with each other? Yin yang. When did this dominance influence our lives, our way of being, our very essence?

When did the world become disharmonious, acrimonious and so full of hate and fear of the feminine? What was it that scared the patriarchy so much that she had to be subjected to such disrespect, hate and fear?

And when did we as women begin to do the same? To treat our sisters with such disdain?

Our lives begin as an innocent child

Mine began with so much love to give, trust and a zest for life. Yet, it was silenced. Distrusted. Trampled on. Pushed aside. She was no one’s princess. No one’s delight to be held in loving arms.

There was constant fear. Anger. Fighting for her life. Fighting for meagre crumbs. Never feeling enough. Confident. Good enough. Bright enough. Worthy. Precious. Treasured. Always wanting to be a boy as from a young age she saw how they got treated. Differently to her. With more respect. Put first. Revered.

A man makes a woman feel valued. I still see this in my mother. They get treated differently in society. Accepted and welcomed into society. I had firsthand experience of this when I met my partner in my 40’s A shift. Oh, so subtle and it was there, nonetheless. Shunned if they don’t play the game. Ostracised if they don’t toe the line. Rejected and isolated.

They are someone when they are married. This gives them status. Acceptance. As if a male must give her value. Take on his name. Become second to him. Be his trophy. Until there is a divorce. On the outer. No one. Struggling. Alone. Shunned by society.

Women against women. Men against women. There is no way out. Like a butterfly battering their wings against the windowpane until they are exhausted and die as they cannot find a way out. They don’t see their own beauty and divinity. Their gentleness and strength. That they aren’t stuck. There is a way out.

Women hurt themselves by not believing in themselves. By remaining in loveless marriages. By not knowing how to handle money. Not feeling worthy of having money or of making money. Not feeling deserving of earning good money. Having good jobs. Being at the top of their game.

We have adapted to the patriarchal norms

In doing so they lose sight of what it means to be a woman. They adapt themselves to the patriarchal norms to be accepted. To be of value. To get to the top.

They become de-feminised. They become asexual. Hard. Sharp. Aggressive. Tough. Lopsided. As being emotional is non-acceptable. It’s a putdown. Derogatory. Being a girl.

The traits of a woman aren’t respected. Honoured. Favoured. Enhanced. That side of us is hidden. Denied. Not even left at home.

I was once a girl who now has a story to tell

A girl who wanted to be loved just as she was. Without having to change. Pretend to be otherwise. She was a girl with dreams. With desires. Not to be.

She was a girl who adapted to what society wanted her to be in many ways. She was boxed. And she hated being boxed. Playing by the rules. She could never understand why she wasn’t treated equally. She had a good brain. She was a human being, albeit a woman. So, what was the difference in treatment?

Yet, she didn’t marry and have children. She wasn’t merely a secretary and married at an early age to no longer be a financial burden to her father as was expected of her. She rebelled in that way. She didn’t like to wear dresses. Have her hair long. Wear makeup (tart – coquette). Play with dolls. That was too much like being a girl and being hurt. That meant she was nothing. Stereotyped.  Second fiddle. Second best.

Where did it start?

In the home. She didn’t even need to walk out the door to feel this difference. To feel this neglect. To feel the need to be invisible. To deny her womanhood. To live in fear of her life. Of her sexuality. Of her strength. Her beauty. Her mind. Her intelligence.

She was confused. Lost. Angry. Aggressive. Fighting her way through life with no tools. No guidance. Stranded. Abandoned. Fighting to feel seen. To feel worthy, feel equal and accepted. To feel someone. Special. Someone’s princess.

She felt isolated and the world was against her. She led her life in this combative way. Prickly. On edge. Always on guard. She reneged being a woman. Denied her bodily functions. Didn’t honour her cycle. Her womanhood. Her sexuality.

That meant being hurt. Played with. Violated. Derided. It meant being visible and open to being hurt. Abused. Rubbished. A protective shield was insidiously built around her. Invisible and impenetrable. To protect her. To keep her out of harm’s way.

Yet, she also stood up for herself. Went against the rules. And she also had her own self-imposed rules. Confused. On the one hand, she was strong and resilient and went her own way. On the other, she was submissive and toad the line.

Why? Due to not feeling enough. Due to the guilt of the role she was meant to play. Expected to play. Not to be herself. To be an individual. Individuate from the family. Her tribe. To become her own identity. Her own personality.

Who was she?

What did she want from life? Marriage. Yet didn’t marry. Children. Not in this lifetime. To make a difference. Yet didn’t feel worthy of doing so.

Self-derogatory, self-judging and self-denigrating. Lost and confused. Felt separate. Different. Lonely. Put all these facades to hide her sensitivity. Her vulnerability. Her kindness. Love. Compassion. Her self. Her true self.

One that is bright. Intelligent. Loving. Attractive. Spiritual. Successful. Fun. Sexual. Sensual. Capable.

It all became too much for her. She lied to herself. She was tired. Drained.

Then it started to turn around. A feeling of peace washed over her. A feeling of worthiness and of success. Beauty. Value.

Self-contained. Proud. Attractive. No longer feeling responsible for her family. The world. World domination. Needing to be number one. Recognised. Out there.

Who is she now?

She was doing what she wanted to do for herself. Her life. To feel happy. Content. Joyful. Confident. Free. Beautiful. Enough. In fact more than enough.

She wants nothing more than for you to know you also have a story to tell. That she is, of course, me, Chantal. I now own my story, my divinity and my feminity.

This is the main reason why I do what I do. I became a Reiki master, mindfulness coach and aromatherapist to give you what has helped me over the years. If you are peaked to know more, click on this link for more information and to book your first session with me.

meet chantal

Chantal Vanderhaeghen is an intuitive guide, small business owner, creator of an international skincare brand, passionate philanthropist and meditation, reiki, tapping and mindfulness teacher. She works with women ready to make changes, shatters perceptions of beauty and perfection, and inspires people ready to become mindful entrepreneurs. She lives with her talented man in the Perth Hills and can be found online at www.unfoldyoufreedom.com.au

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