Activities KWAT (Kachin Women's Association Thailand)

But then something happened, and if not for the mirrors in my house, I would be very baffled about what changed and why. Young women, you'll encounter this too, some day.

You'll catch your reflection and your breath simultaneously and be abruptly reminded that your facade no longer matches how you feel inside, and that it now weakens the power of your voice, the tone that took ten years to build up. I was talking about this to a good friend recently who is 49, one year younger than I am. She said, "Oh wow. I remember my grandmother saying to me the exact same thing about being horrified by her appearance in the mirror because she still seemed like a young woman inside, and she was eighty." So this most likely will not end for me, nor for any one of us given the gift of not dying young. It worth keeping in mind.

Men don't catcall me anymore, and I'm delighted to have aged from that, regardless of the fact that a few of my friends and colleagues are not. My daughter is grown, so the mom wars rage on without me. I'm now happy to be self-employed-- an escape hatch from workplace sexism that is not available to all women, and one that I fully value. I charge what I want as a coach and will never again come across information at the office that a male co-worker who is younger, less educated and less qualified than me makes more bucks than me just because he comes from the penis-owning sex. I am not beyond the physical and sexual dangers all women deal with, but they have declined to some degree for me at this period of my life.

All of this freedom, nevertheless, is not entirely liberating. I have basically been transported into the next stage of chauvinism that comes with midlife, and it's an impressive change well illustrated metaphorically by the female physique that is eyed and objectified changing into the female body that is unnoticeable. If the loudest and most declared voices of present-day feminism most often belong to the youngest and most sexually appealing women, is this not a hypocritical duplication within womanism of what happens in our fatherlike community at large?