Monday, March 31, 2014

My Yoga Body

After this week's film, I wanted to share a personal experience. 
Last week I was leaving my yoga class. It was an afternoon class, so the parking for the plaza was pretty limited when I had arrived and I had to park towards the end of the parking lot.

I walked into class, and immediately felt energized. The instructors there are constantly telling you to love your body, and to trust your body, and at the end of class you leave feeling like you're on top of the world... because you love yourself.

I left class feeling this high. As I walked to the car though, I had to walk by a bar (5:15 pm). I heard some men at a table say - "Now THAT'S a yoga girl!".

Editors Note: I was wearing leggings and a tank top. I always want to wear baggier pants, but it is too hard to do some of the poses in them. As for the tank, the classes are heated sometimes upwards of 105*... I don't feel comfortable in shorts, so a tank just has to suffice. 

I ignored them. I felt like I should be flattered, but at the same time I felt uneasy.

As I continued to walk, one of the guys hollered - "Looking good girl!"

I may have sped up a bit. I was in a full blown panic. What do I do? Every part of my being is fighting this disrespect. If I stop and say "Thank you", it would give them the idea that I liked their comment. So I decided to do what my parent's always told me to do when I was little and getting picked on, just ignore them.

I did just that. I ignored them.

I took a few more steps before I heard them holler again, this time angry - "FINE! Be a BITCH!"

It was THEIR unsolicited comment, which I chose to ignore, and I still get called a bitch.

I immediately took to Facebook, I was hoping that by posting about my experience, perhaps someone who catcalls women would see that the majority of us don't appreciate it.
Me: "Just got called a bitch for not turning around after getting catcalled... WTF?!"

The first comment was from a male friend:
"Better for that than turning around, reacting to it and being called a bitch anyway."

This is so true. Because not only would I have been so upset and angry that the words to express how disrespectful this man was would not come out, but I would end up causing more pain for myself with the confrontation. It would be roughly 5 against 1. 

I half wished my dad had been there... Then again, the comment would have most likely never been made. 

This week's film " War Zone" - showed just this. A woman brave enough to confront her harassers. A woman with the strength to tell these men the truth behind their actions and how and what kind of impact they have on women. 

The impact it had on me is still disturbing. They killed my yoga "high". I immediately hopped in the car and locked the doors. I have been trained that men do these things, and that if I am not careful and cover up... it is inevitable that I will be raped. Why am I constantly living in a state of fear, when men are raised with society telling them they have the upper hand? That because they have a penis, street abuse is no big deal?

Are parent's teaching their sons to be so disrespectful, or are they learning it from the media? 
Are there women who enjoy being catcalled and harassed?
Do men actually get women by doing this, dates/marriage?
Why should I have to wear what is uncomfortable physically, to not get harassed and feel comfortable emotionally?


No comments: