They come in various shapes, sizes and colours. They differ in sound, style and character. Fate has it that I'm one as well. I know it's not always a 50-50 chance, but I think in my family it was.
At times I run into a soul mate. A smile, a joke and immediately I know there's a sameness in spirit.
But other times.... I may sit next to a woman who makes me feel awkward. As if I'm excelling in boorishness, in unrefinement. Totally lacking in graces... These negative feelings about myself make it hard for me to like my neighbour. It's not fair, I know. These women, fellows of my gender, may not think so badly of me. It's just that I've been impressed in the late sixties -by those who raised or educated me- with what I ought to be like, not having been born a boy. This hampers me at moments that self esteem runs low....
Yes the opposite at times happens too. There are ways of being a woman that lie outside the range of my 'ambition' so to speak.
At my better moments, if I see a woman smile to her youngster, play, laugh at a child's prank as old as life... give advise or just frown, mutter, jank or maybe even scold ... I know she went through those same last stages of pregnancy and labor like I did. Or maybe through the trials and tensions that make adoptions not easier and definitely no less loving than when nature has granted you the ability to have a child that is genetically related. I know this woman went through teething and the tantrums of the terrible two's, wondering whether puberty would really be worse than that...
Then I realize that deep down we are not so different, that we are resilient and creative creatures, curious and caring.
When I see anyone of us with a partner who is just not treating her -us- in a way I can call respectful, my toes curl in my shoes. Will she open her eyes, I question myself, and end up with someone else who gives her the respect she deserves -and needs- . Or better yet, will she be able to hang in and manage to uncover the gold she somehow feels must be residing in her counterpart ?
Because, despite of our difference in looks, manners and style, we are all valuable creatures.