Yesterday I went to the movies to see Wonder Woman.
I was excited because she’s always been my favourite superhero and I wanted to see how Hollywood would translate this fierce, female warrior into cinematic glory.
Several times throughout the movie I felt tears welling in my eyes, I didn’t even wipe the stray ones that rolled silently down my cheeks lest my husband notice and give me a look like, why are you crying in a fictional action movie?
I cried because I was inspired but I was also moved to grief by the context of the movie, set in a time of war and depicting the devastating ways in which humans harm and destroy each other.
The storyline was inspirational because it gave a female actress the opportunity to not only be a badass, to rescue a man rather than be rescued or relegated to the role of sidekick, to demonstrate vulnerability and strength in facing adversity, to have a strong sense of justice and to be an incredible opponent earning the respect of her love interest, allies and the antagonists in the movie.
While I was watching I was thinking about the role models we are influenced by today, how in this age of Insta-Fame and celebrity pap walks to nowhere my daughter will grow up bombarded by the media’s unrealistic beauty standards, expectations and glamorisation of certain celebrities, whose contribution to feminism or female empowerment is a constant deluge of pouting selfies in various states of undress. I just want to ask them is that all you have to offer? Do something, stand for something… otherwise your beauty becomes boring.
I loved that this was a core message of the movie, Wonder Woman has strong beliefs and she is willing to defend them, she refuses to be dismissed or underestimated. Her costume is also incredibly cool, with clothing and weaponry which serve a functional and protective purpose, she is sexy without it being the sole intent, we don’t need to see her nipples to know she has them. Mystery will always have more allure than narcissism and exhibitionism.
What I want to reinforce in my daughter’s morals, values and ethics is the belief and understanding that she is surrounded by Wonder Women in her family and immediate social networks, women who work hard to improve their lives, the lives of their children and partner’s, women who display an admirable strength of character, courage, tenacity, loyalty and self awareness. Women who have survived domestic violence, miscarriage, breast cancer, sexual assault, post natal depression etc. Women who face their challenges and demons and know they will be stronger from the fight.
We may not always escape the battle unscarred but our fortitude and resilience, capacity to love and kindness to others is what makes women so wonderful.
Do you have a Wonder Woman in your life? Please share her story so we can all be inspired xx