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Collective victims Part 3 - Oh, I see

Svegliatevi bambine, è primavera!


I would like to shout and scream at the top of my lungs, from the top of Charles Bridge in Prague if needed.


I want to jump down and shake these people hard back to their seances. But it would't work. Ideas are born and passed over through the mind, igniting certain behaviors. The conviction that as a woman you are destined to be a victim and have a secondary role is fueled by the environment and the expectations other people have from you while in that particular environment.


That being said, let us open again the door towards the miraculous world of womanhood, victims and look at a particular aspect of it today- work. As always, I am going to use myself as the lab mouse.


Let's go into it!


I have to make a very important distinction from the very beginning. I will be referring to:


1) work as an environment where a certain activity is being performed and one is being payed for that. Going to work, coming back from work - a place where people gather and do something to get money. Energetically it feels in resistance to a deeper desire.


2) work as an attitude generated by someone no matter the environment, no monetary expectations. An attitude defining the person just like Nr.5 defines Coco Chanel or the aroma of fresh bread belongs to a baker. Something we call talent or art or genius. Energetically it feels good, flowing and pleasure generating.


Also, there is a distinction between certain stages in my life as I know it. I've been alive long enough to be able to distinguish these eras :

  1. Here I am!

  2. WTF!

  3. OH, I see!


The way though has been bumpy, recognizing the existence of these periods is a victory in itself.


I


Coming from a place knee deep in mental shit - Moldova- I got the impression that work in nobel, good, serious and obligatory. Good people work, bad people waste their time. Not important what the work is, do it.

Time invested in work means money. Money means being alive another day. The fact that tomorrow might not come, who knows if there will be enough to eat, not to mention the continuation of the family's project: DIY-ing a freaking house on Livezilor Str., from scratch, bricks still to be found or made (cow/horse shit + sand+clay+water+sun+time), all that was real.


Young couples were courageous and kind of crazy those days. I like that. Their love and determination gave them power, emotional stability and a direction. My father envisioned everything, he made the windows and the doors even! We used to spend our evenings listening to him talking about the beautiful house we will have. We were deeply in love with this vision. I was there too, attempting different experiments from the series - What will happen if? I almost inserted 2 nails in a power socket following this credo.


So, for me work was important and utilitarian. If I work, I can help my parents, I can chop that heap of wood an so help again, the house will grow and they will stop fighting. By observing my parents, work was problem concentrated, problem generating and a little bit crazy (Try build a house with nothing now!) .

This era lasted late into my 18th year of existence.


II


Welcome to the time when I asked myself a lot : WTF is going in here?


How does the knowing that as human beings we are all creative in multiple ways mingle with the fact that to built a house you need stones, clay, cement, windows, people, food and time to actually do it? Am I really looking forward to a life of utilitarianism? That is to say, am I working just to get somewhere or something?


Some years ago on a Saturday, the day when I would normally talk to my parents for the week, I called my mother back home in Moldova and announced that I had found a job. I was in Constanta, Romania studying and keeping an old woman alive - my kind of roommate. Eventuality she died - of loneliness, I bet.


-What is this job? my mother asked.


I do not remember my exact response, I also didn't know much about it and so my mother didn't insist, but she still encouraged me, happy that I might have found a possibility to survive on my own.

My main goal for going to study in Romania was the fact that I had won a scholarship, meaning that the burden of paying studies would not fall on the family, details important for you to grasp the whole utilitarian mindset I had. I was making ends meet using the small stipend + what my parents managed to send from time to time, and, since I was managing the old woman's household, in dire times I would share her pension.


Arrest me if you can.


I was about to become a fashion model, represented by a small agency in Constanta. The most important word in this sentence is Become. Understanding that whatever you are doing is transforming you, you become that, came during the next era. For the moment I was still trying to grasp the meaning of what was going on.


How did my Becoming unfold?


Oh man! I survived, that is what I can say now, that is the main skill I've learned there -survive whatever happens.


I learned to fly when thrown of a cliff. Multiple times a day.


I learned that there is no good or bad way, just an unstoppable forward moving towards a very certain ending. You choose the manner you are going to arrive and how fast.


What do you do to survive? By opening up to whatever the hell or the sky is throwing at you. Do your best with what you have. Try again. Try again. And again. Have standards and rise up to them. No excuses. Be kind with yourself and the people around you.


You see that I am keeping it very general here, I do. I am not going into the power abuse, the horrible self treatment one is being pushed into by the environment and the codependency character such an environment has. That would be victimizing myself, whereas I know now that I was there because I was susceptible to abuse, self doubt and self hate.

I did not fall into addictions (drugs, sex, alcohol, narcissism) because of the very intention I had when signing the first contract - I was in for the experience. Money never crossed my mind. Looking back now- wow, this thing saved my life and my souls while in hell.

I was in for entering, living, hearing the languages of Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Chenzhou, Chongqing, Xiamen,Changsha, Beijing,Macau, Singapore, Hong freaking Kong, Paris, Kuala Lumpur, Seoul.

I've shaken hands with Jackie Chan, met real designers and creative teams in Paris and all over, met myself looking back from photos and real size posters- all that while I was feeling like a double agent, in myself and in that environment. If I would have had a protective space around me, people to help me not only taking from me, I know that I would have gone farther.


I was in for the experience and the experience was getting worst every day because I had lost the connection with my self. I became a commodity by putting myself in that environment while thinking this is what I deserve. I will keep repeating this because so important to grasp.


What happened next?


After 6 years of doing that, the last ones hardly coping, I became jobless, hopeless, friendless, selfless. I was tired, extremely tired, consumed by all I've seen, dreaming drugged girls running at night on the streets. The limbo phase between eras had started. I did consider suicide, yes, and no, I do not believe now that it was wrong. Under those circumstances and in that state of being it was a ...rational possibility. And No, I do no see it as a solution now. It takes you out of the game it does not change the game. This is not the reason for being alive.



III

The begging of a new era


After months of soulless joblessness I decided that I can do it again. I will push myself off the cliff this time. I like to fly after all.

The only condition to that : the environment and the activity is not going to determine who I am. I will fill myself, my heart and my soul by doing precisely what I want and like to do. This is how I instinctively arrived to the conclusion that work is changeable, it is a flowing activity in different environments and everybody can do that for themselves. This is when I started to think work as an attitude, a feeling to be nurtured and cared for. This is when I started to follow my well being.


From there I had different roles:


2 x Customer Care representative - I wanted to get back in touch with human beings, be among them, hear them, talk to them.

Service Desk Agent - my never ending curiosity took me there.

Waitress and kitchen adjutant in Germany - no no no!b Bad ideaaaa!

Cleaning rooms, waiting tables and kitchen aid in a castle outside good old Florence, Italy- Noo! Stop it! Very bad idea indeed!

Sourcing Analyst - what is that?

Service Delivery Analyst - sounds challenging, I will do it.


Even if I was not and still now am not doing highly ranked job nor getting highly ranked payments, I am feeling good. All my colleagues coming in with MBAs, PHDs and what not- are also here.


Now


I am a believer. I believe in the creative power of each one of us. I am one of the creators living on this planet. Only good ideas last. My ideas come through my experiences- I try to have different ones, always following the principle of feeling good while going for what I want, that is, I do it because the power comes from me and I can even transform the thing!


I arrive at new ideas through reading as well. To give you some examples related to what has been said here.


In her book "Das andere Geschlecht", the chapter "Situation und Charakter der Frau" Simone de Beauvoir is saying : Ganz allgemein akzeptieren sie, was ist. Einer ihrer charakteristischen Züge ist die Resignation. ... Sie wissen sich machtlos gegen die Dinge: die Vulkane, die Polizei, die Vorgesetzten, die Männer.'Frauen sind zum Leiden geschaffen', sagen sie. 'So ist das Leben...Man kann nichts daran ändern.'


Which is to say: Women accept the shit and fall into resignation. It's a man's man's man's world style.


Me: Really?


The author also says : Man schließt die Frau in der Küche ein, im Boudoir und wundert sich dass ihr Horizont beschränkt ist. Man stutzt ihr die Flügel und beklagt, dass sie nicht fliegen kann. Man öffne ihr die Zukunft und sie wird nicht mehr gezwungen sein, sich in der Gegenwart einzurichten.


Meaning : Let women come to light, let them see that the kitchen has a door, one can go in and out. Prostitution and sexual tourism is not emancipation but self abuse.


Simone doesn't stop there, she continues : Sie neigt nicht zum endgültigen Lösungen. Sie protestiert gegen den Mann, gegen das Leben, gegen ihre Lage, aber sie bricht nicht aus.


This is where I come in, jumping over the bridge and say: WTF women?



As for the book I mentioned last time, "Ancora dalla parte delle bambine" by Loredana Lipperini a milestone book exposing the chauvinist Italian culture ...well, I could not gulp it down.

Why? Even if the analysis is deep, wide and all over, it goes into details that only add to the horror. How many women die on Monday or on Saturday or per minute, being killed by angry men, is not contributing to a solution. The book is addressing of course different aspects. It is indeed important to measure the Italian lunacy, a place where even in the present century books such as- "Stai zitta e va' in cucina: Breve storia del maschilismo in politica da Togliatti a Grillo" (Shut up and stay in the kitchen: Short history of Chauvinism in politics from Togliatti to Grillo) by Filipo Maria Bataglia- are being written, published and hopefully read.

In a culture where victim women "thrive" by being taught to give up their mind force such an analysis is indeed useful to take the pulse of the culture by looking attentively at it, but again, according to me, it makes things worse.


We are looking at symptoms the whole time.


To make a politically incorrect analogy : if an obese person takes hundreds of showers to get rid of the fat that is only going to make that person insane, dry their skin and waste a lot of water.


According to me, the solution is to change our behavior locally, in every day life, became aware of the way we look and interact with life situations. Notice how we speak, how we use language to make out way through life and ultimately define ourselves.



Coming up next: I am going to talk about one of the possible ways women are processing their apparent victim destined nature. The state that Simone de Beauvoir called ohnmächtiger Zorn - impotent anger, my translation, of course :)



With love from the bridge,

Victoria.