As recent as 2015 (when I started Femme Rising) no one was using the word FEMME and very few were using the word RISING. I knew I had to trademark it immediately because things would shift (and I'm glad I did because now these words are widespread).
At the time, the need I saw for healing and embodiment around sensuality wasn't visibly being met anywhere else (sexuality was starting to, but not sensuality itself) and I became aware that there was a void for women to heal or awaken with their bodies and psyches in a soft, innocent and cyclical way.
I know women are out there and have been out there doing this work for a long time (women who paved the way for me in this lifetime as well as the women who have been for thousands of years / since the beginning of time) but it wasn't really in the media or in the mainstream's minds.
A few women were starting to make some big waves (my immense gratitude to Psalm Isadora for being one of them) but generally (from news to social media memes) it was much quieter.
And it was quieter ... but the seeds were sprouting ... which is why we are beginning to see it so much everywhere right now.
Sensuality and sexuality is starting to be recognized an integral part of our health and wellbeing and is gaining mainstream awareness on everything from sexual identity, to gender identity and equality, recent events illustrated by the US government and these significant headlines: the leaked would be sexist and conservative "Google Manifesto" on gender and workplace diversity, the current Taylor Swift trial, and the emergence of women going public on the misogynistic male world of tech and start ups to name a few.
The Femme IS Rising. It's like 2 years ago a massive wave was sowed and we all felt it in way that was unique to us and right now, that unique expression is coming into form.
Now, FEMME and RISING are everywhere.
And it’s interesting, because now, more widely than jut these words, I've also I've also had women who claim to be colleagues in Feminine/Sexual Empowerment compliment, judge or shame me and then flat out steal my branding and my words (directly from my site).
Yes, it stabs me in the heart and it fucking hurts when someone steals my words or copies my vision.
But in this wave of awakening, I also know that what we as women experience in awakening to our feminine power is similar, and in my heart, I know what they’re sharing is somehow an expression of what is true for them, because otherwise, why bother?
I know we feel similar things and as we REMEMBER we try our best to make sense of it: so we reach for what resonates.
But what I wish people would really grasp about what it means to "reclaim the feminine" is how unique each of our expressions are. Yes there are similarites: they can be compared but they also can't.
For some it's a physical reclaiming. For others it's sexual. My making sense of it was sensual. Reclaiming my body and my sexuality through the pathway of the senses is what led me to my feminine power and my power led me to FEMME RISING.
I really honestly never thought I'd be doing this work with my body or my life but what I've loved discovering along the way, is how my unique expression has become and how my own expression continues to be born from my own experience.
Which is the whole point of awakening and reclaiming! Whatever “Femme Rising” or the words you choose to describe what reclaiming the feminine mean to you: the whole point is to allow yourself discover your own unique experience and from that place, EMBODY YOUR OWN UNIQUE EXPRESSION.
Which brings me to my main point: in a time of such collective awareness awakening, I’M GETTING TIRED OF THE SHAME AND JUDGEMENT FROM OTHER WOMEN TOWARDS OTHER WOMEN AS THEY EXPLORE EXPRESSING THEIR EMBODIMENT.
There is the rampant occurrence of women body shaming other women /// That Solange's album wasn't "black" enough /// "The Women's March was a powerful statement could have been (insert criticism)" /// Criticism that the words Goddess / Witch / Priestess are getting "so overused" /// Women saying that Taylor Swift ins’t “feminist” enough ///
What good is any of that doing?
Yes, it seems to be everywhere. Yes, there are of us who have been fighting for this for a long time. Yes, some of it feels commodified and insincere. Yes, I know.
But please, let's CELEBRATE that these things are actually happening.
That women are owning their power and using their voices. That women are remembering the sacred seeds they carry.
That the word GODDESS is actually being used in the mainstream!
So many things are shit: the US government, hate, bigotry, racism, sexism, pain, suffering, poverty, climate change.
We obviously still have a lot of work to do, BUT LOOK AT WHAT IS HAPPENING.
WOMEN ARE ACTUALLY RISING (and at an epic rate).
So, if you truly believe in Goddess: if you truly believe that we are all expressions of the Divine coming to know itself, how can you shame another woman for her evolution of awakening to the divinity within herself?
Big Mama obviously isn’t new, she was here before all of us and she will be here long after all of us and she definitely doesn’t discriminate. So please, check your drama and your dogma at the gate.
Anyone who has gone through healing and awakening knows it's uncomfortable. It's awkward. You struggle. It's expansive and liberating and painful and terrifying. You stride forward and you fall back. Anyone whose risen from the ashes into their own expression knows this.
The last thing the Feminine needs she while rediscovers her wings is judgement on how she takes off before her engines even pick up enough steam to leave the runway.
She’s been grounded for thousands of years, so give her some freaking time to remember how to fly before you step in and declare certain expressions unworthy.
Bowing down to all the women who do raise up other women, who do this work and all the ancestors who paved the way for ALL OF US to rise.
Image and words by Femme Rising, if you share it, please credit it.