by Becky Clifford
Recently, I was in church and listened to the pastor talk about God’s love for us and made the analogy of his love being like a cloak he places over us. And that sometimes a man puts a cloak of love over his wife. How he sees her as divine and perfect. He told a story of a man from the noblest of backgrounds marrying a commoner and that she was shy but confident in her husband’s love for her and able to enter the finest of places and take comfort in knowing what he thought of her. That while some of the underlying noise from people may have been that she wasn’t “good enough”, she knew he believed she was and that he chose HER and therefore she had a quiet confidence because of his love.
This then got me thinking about the princess culture and the “being rescued” and how that all relates to women and their confidence. And then today I experienced it. My husband and daughter are away on a daddy-daughter trip and I attended a Swiss national brunch for the first time with a newish female friend. I knew I was going to see some people I knew and I sort of did wish he was there by my side. And I thought why? And maybe, just maybe, it is because his extra love I crave sometimes, especially being far from family and in a different culture….one where not everyone welcomes expats with opening arms…let’s be honest. And as him and I take this venture to be confident in our decisions here and to embrace our American-ness despite what people think Trump may or may not represent, we can strengthen each other with our love for one another.
But I found it quite ironic that on Swiss National Day where Switzerland is celebrating independence that I too am celebrating my independence. I am celebrating how far I have come and women have come in stepping out from the cloak of a man’s love and working on self-love. On remembering God’s love or divine love, whatever you chose to believe. As I give up labels and fear I turn towards love. Love of my body, love of my decisions, love of the person I am. And if you are completely in love with yourself – I think it drowns out the hate and judgement and forms quite a strong cloak. My daughter sometimes looks to me to cloak her and as I share my love, I think she gains more and more confidence. And of course I feel good about it, because this is my biggest job as a mum.
Now, in a perfect world that cloak would remain on you once you find it, but honestly this is a journey and I think developing one’s own cloak is just as important as cloaking those around you and allowing yourself to be cloaked at times. Often in life it can feel like your cloak is strong or weak or being tugged by someone else’s, or a day where it feels like everyone is fighting over one cloak? And it is in those moments where I need to slow down and ask myself how do I find mine again? Because that cloak is powerful. It is transformative. It is divine. So, Rock on with your fantastic colorful creative strong gorgeous cloaks mums and share it with those around you!
Note from the Founder of Mums in Heels:
Here at Mums in Heels we often talk about finding and owning your independence as a mum and within your relationship with others. However we also like to talk about feminism and how like so many other things it could be twisted and bend in many ways in the minds of people. As Becky mentions in her article there is nothing wrong to want your man by your side and yet hold space for your independence (and self-love). I recently read a brilliant article about women and their fantasies of being rescued. After Becky wrote her piece for Mums in Heels I thought this is the perfect opportunity to share with you what the author of the article said, because as much as I am a proud feminist, I think we can’t do it alone…whether it is a man or a supportive circle of people around us, No Man is An Island: “There’s no shame in wanting to be rescued, or in crying out for help when you need it. There’s no shame in protecting women or championing their rights, their choices, their equality. (And no, legislating away their choices is not being protective). It’s OK to be Prince Charming—aristocratic title, white horse, and tights not required. It’s OK for men and women to unite in making the world a safer, happier place. And it’s OK to enjoy stories that show how men and women can accomplish that together”, says Maya Rodale in her article. She is the author of multiple historical romance novels, as well as the nonfiction book Dangerous Books for Girls: The Bad Reputation of Romance Novels Explained