The concept of the feminine genius refers to the unique and profound gifts women have to offer the world. Coined by Pope John Paul II, the movement is to recognize women as holding separate, but equally as important, gifts as men, and together, we exist in symbiotic and balanced relationships. As a female myself, while I do support female empowerment and do believe in gender equality, I also do believe that, as females, we are built differently than men. I can see this most apparently when I’m flying in the airplane with Michael. The attention and focus of my brain is used to being diverted in ten different directions–I’m looking at the bird gliding above me, thinking about whose house we might potentially be flying over, and trying to figure out the missing words to that song I just heard on the radio all at the same time. But Michael’s laser focus, on the other hand, is directed towards one thing: flying the airplane (and, because my brain goes five different directions at once, I should not be a pilot).
We exist in these balanced relationships, but we also must recognize the importance of having Girl Time.
Don’t get me wrong, I love hanging out with my Michael. And, when I think about leaving him for Girl Time, I’m often very sad and dejected and mournful that we will be apart from each other. For one, girl time means that I’ll be purchasing my own food. I won’t have anyone to carry my bags for me; if I get lost, I’ll have to find my own way back, and I’ll have to stick to my own seat on the airplane (and I can’t sprawl across the distance of two seats).
But, as my spring rounded out a plethora of Girl Time (from a back to back bachelorette in Hawaii and Breckinridge, to a sister trip in San Diego), I was reminded of the importance of Girl Time.
I can indulge in girl-preferred genres. Relationships are about compromise. It truly is a beautiful thing when two people come together and make the selfless sacrifice to do, what is not better for the self, but rather, what is better for the whole. For us, this often looks like the Netflix choices. A romantic at heart, I love movies, such as Sweet Home Alabama or Where the Heart Is. In Michael’s opinion, these are often drama’s about people just talking to each other; he’d much rather watch an adventure film (so, of course, we compromise and watch The Bachelor–I can see corny love stories, and he can see fun adventures). But, when I hang out with my girls, I don’t have to compromise, because they like those sappy films, too (most recently, we’ve been into Marie Kondo).
I can jam out to my girl-specific music. When I do karaoke with my Michael, we do sing some really fantastic songs, like A Whole New World, or Shallow, or some Salt N Peppa. But, because he is a guy, Michael’s range will never be able to reach some of those love songs I love jamming to (mostly because the songs remind me of being an angsty, hormonal, dramatic teenager), like Winston Phillip’s Hold On, or Celine’s It’s All Coming Back to Me, or some LeAnn Rimes and Mandy Moore. Those songs (in all their high-note-glory are saved for my girls.
Girl time offers perspective. Recently, I mis-loaded the washing machine. What I thought was a relatively small vest apparently attracted all of the washing machine water, and on the spin cycle, the washing machine danced in front of the door so we could not open it. Michael, who had never seen this issue before, was worried that I had broken the washing machine and that we would be responsible to replace it. However, upon sharing this story with my girls, I learned, “Oh, we have done that before! You just have to balance the washing bin better next time!”
But most importantly, your girls will be your biggest support system. When your boyfriend goes out of town to travel for work, your girls will be the ones to show up and run the incline with you. When you accidentally set a Tupperware on the hot stovetop and it melts plastic (and you don’t want to tell him, because you already got lectured about the washing machine fiasco), your girls will be the ones to recommend using an ice cube to zap the plastic off. And, when your breast milk comes out a little yellow–and your husband won’t even go near that stuff–it will be your girls that tell you the same exact thing happened to them (and then they will also offer you some cream for when your nipples dry out and crack, because who would think that would happen?)
You will need your girlfriends. Don’t let ’em go.