I remember when Lil Mo and Fabolous came out with the song “Superwoman.” It was an anthem for all women alike: “I wear that ‘S’ on my chest!”
When that song came on especially while driving in the car with my boo I used to scream that out real loud to make sure he heard me. I wanted him to know that with me he was well taken care of. It was me tooting my own horn, but I had to let him know that I was a one stop shop. It wouldn’t get any better than me!
But now when I think about it, the “Superwoman” or “Shero” mentality that we women have fashioned into body armor can be rewarding yet stressful at the same time.
As I’ve stated before, women are often thought to be the weaker sex, so of course we want to wear the cape and save the day! We carry the world and all its problems on our backs! We tend to our careers, our partners, our children, homes, side hustles, and, if there’s time and energy left over, then we worry about ourselves. We try to fix everyone else’s issues while ignoring our own. We give great advice but find it challenging to navigate the jungle of our own problems.
Have any of us ever really sat down to ask ourselves why we feel like we have to be Superwomen? For some of us, we inherited the “S” because of the way we grew up. We witnessed our mothers, grand-mothers, aunties, and cousins take on personal and family issues without missing a beat or losing their minds (or so, it seemed). For others, we had to create the “S” we wear. Whether we had to overcompensate because we were trying to fill a void on one level or another, or because we felt like we had to compete with other women to get noticed...that “S” on your chest says a lot about the victories under your feet, as well as the scars on your heart.
I used to try to fix my issues on my own because, well, that’s what Superheroes do, right? They handle their business and get things done! Well, who saves Superwoman when she needs help? We’re so quick to throw on the cape not even knowing that before we go out and fight battles we need to be healed and whole first. We invest so much into others that we often have nothing left over for ourselves. How much are we really pouring into others if we’re drawing from a place of scarcity and our own source is running dry?
I read an interesting article about the mental health of women, particularly women of color. The writer stated that women of color deal with mental health issues because of this very idea called the Superwoman complex. We barely tell others “No.” We allow ourselves to be pulled in all different directions. We are constantly trying to beat the odds that we don’t even realize we are a statistic in the making.
Before we can save anyone, we must first love ourselves enough to know when we need to hang up the cape, let our hair down, and just rest. It’s important to rest our minds, bodies, and souls. Self love—REAL self love—is taking a moment to smile at your reflection when you walk by that mirror. It’s taking the time to give yourself compliments just because you are fundamentally fly. It’s being okay with the silence that fills your mind sometimes as you rest, essentially filling up with the strength needed to pick up that cape tomorrow. THIS is what makes us Superwomen.
I challenge you to take some time today for some necessary self-love. Read a book, get a massage, go for a walk, have sex, laugh, cry, exercise. Just do what makes your soul feel safe, loved, and protected.
We are powerful Queens. Remember: not everything in life that has stirred some emotions in us should have the power to shake us. We are Women. Therefore, we are Warriors!!