In praise of difficult women

There's been a delay in this post - but for good reason. We finally finally finally got waves. And I had promised myself that when this flat spell ended that surfing would take priority. And it did. And I'm stoked.

But I still wanted to share something with you this week. I'm in the middle of reading a book, one that I'm finding myself hopping into bed early every night to read. One that feels like it's seriously good for my soul (and my mental health !). It's called 'In praise of difficult women' by Karen Karbo. Life lessons from 29 heroines who dared to break the rules.

Oh man - it's good. Short chapters that share the stories of these women who most definitely didn't fit in. And this morning, after my surf, I knew I had some stuff to write about.

I sat down at my computer and these words just tumbled out. I have no idea if you'll resonate with them or not. But I figured I'd share nonetheless. Because sometimes, it's in these moments of vulnerability that we realise how connected we really are.

In praise of difficult women.

For those of us who don’t fit into the mould. Who can’t bring anything to the conversation about birthday parties and after school activities. For those of us who can’t stand the idea of a white picket fence.

Who want to breathe in foreign air, with dirt under our nails and salt in our hair. Who long for adventure and crave more.

It’s ok to want more. It’s ok to need more than this.

It’s ok to have dreams that seem almost too big. To have the audacity to think you might just be able to make a dent in something.

I see you. Feeling out of place. But not wanting to be in that place anyway.

I see you. Yearning for a deeper conversation and a purposeful path.

I see you. Stuck between worlds, wondering where you go next.

Whose hearts are happiest when they’re in the ocean or in the mountains. Where the worries & the fear of never quite belonging seem to disappear. Because at least you belong there. At least you can call this blue & green space home.

We didn’t tick the boxes that society asked of us. Or maybe we did , but then the boxes fell apart or felt too small for us to live in anymore.

The irony is the very boxes we fear remind us that we do want something - we do want somewhere to belong but perhaps just not how most folk want it.

Is it possible to live this life and take parts of that one ? Do we have to choose ? Does there need to be a sacrifice ? Or can we find some kind of blend - can we make up our own version ?

The women who have done that - that’s who I admire the most. Those who have blazed the trail ahead of us and proven that it’s possible. To have insatiable drive and grounded energy. To work harder and surf harder. To go after the crazy dreams whilst being insanely grateful for what exists right here & right now. To vision and then create their own blend of hustle, family & adventure - that might never make sense to anyone else on the planet (but who gives a damn about what everyone thinks anyway ?!).

We might never fit in. We will always be the ones with cuts & bruises. Both literal & metaphorical. The ones with wet hair & sunburnt noses. The ones who couldn’t care less about the car, the house, the holidays. The ones who never wear make up & barely brush their hair. The ones who will say it how it is, even if it makes everyone uncomfortable. Who throw the rule book out the window whilst feeling a sense of absolute relief and pure terror at the same time.

We’ll forever be seeking the next mountain to climb. We’ll never tire of jumping in the ocean and breathing in the fresh fresh air. Our cars will be shitty and our homes will be small. The lows will be lower and the highs will be higher. But our hearts will be full.

Who knows what lies ahead for us. Some days it feels like there’s barely a path to follow. But it’s there - through the undergrowth and beyond the trees.

Honestly ? It looks scary as hell and barely makeable. It’s definitely not the easy path.

But I think it will be worth it.