Monday, February 7, 2011

Female Archetypes, un

 If there is one type of role model I was born into this world lacking first-hand, it is the female archetype. At the age of four my mother was quickly replaced, by what I would commonly refer to as my "evil grandmother." Between 3rd grade and 5th grade, my much older half sister entered the picture. I didn't think she was evil, but I never really looked up to her, and was more annoyed by her than anything. At the ripe age of 12 I was handed over to one of my aunts, from my mothers side. Once again, the universe would not grant me the kind of female role model that I longed for. The space in between living with my father/his mother, and my aunt was also speckled with women. Strange seeming, random women in random foster homes; one being my 6th grade computer teacher who I lived with temporarily. These all fell short of the stick for me, as well. In the meantime, my janet jackson and mariah carey cassette tapes would have to supplement, in much the same way your mulit-vitamin cannot properly fill the space of a balanced and nutritious diet.

I searched high and low for replacements. Sometimes in the form of older female friends, who were really no good for me. Other times, looking towards authority figures. The first woman I ever looked up to in real-time was my therapist from back when I was in highschool. A witty, intelligent woman originally from South Africa, with the accent to bear it. She was probably the only real reason that I agreed to go to therapy, and went willingly. Many of our sessions I spent trying to make her laugh or pry her for personal information (was she married?, what was South Africa like?, did she have kids?) She didn't cave on the really personal stuff, but she would make little agreements with me so that I would give back in the sessions and stay focused (ie: she would agree to talk about South Africa for 5 minutes, if I then focused on what we were there to do.)

The second woman came in the form of a college professor. She represented half of the department I was majoring in. She was intimidating to alot of students, which made me like her even more. Really, she was just very professional and focused. She was petite in size, and probably felt the need compensate for that in the image she projected in the classroom. I felt a real connection with her, and was always trying to find ways to know her on a more personal and multidimensional level. I would schedule alot of appointments with her to talk about my thesis.  The discussions about my work could always move in a more personal direction if I asked the right questions. I also created an independent study course for myself, to assist her in teaching an intermediate college level class. When the department had a potluck at her private residence, I made sure to come. While there, I peaked in all the rooms. She noticed, and told everyone they could look around  in her office and studio room.

So what exactly was I looking for in those rooms? More to come on this......

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