I gave in to the pressure. Peer pressure.
If you’ve known me from my other life (cake art) for long you know how me and the idea of peer pressure get along… If you haven’t been with me that long, let me make it simple. I hold my middle fingers proudly high in the air and offer society and it’s ideas about what I should do a great big “fuck that”.
I had been invited and encouraged about 9 years ago, then 8, then 7, and so on a so forth, to watch a particular television show that was terribly popular.
Not being one to jump granting my time to a new show until it’s well-proven, I waited. And waited. The benefit to this is that if I waited long enough I would be able to binge-watch the entire series and never have to wait till the next episode or season. (Thanks Netflix for teaching us this.) The draw back, I’m late to the party. Oh well.
The fact is that I had tried watching it a couple times in the last few years but never got past the first 15 minutes of the first episode of the series. It just didn’t do anything for me.
I don’t know what changed, but in early December 2019, I finally started watching Game of Thrones. I pushed past the first few episodes as I was told I’d need to do, and I found the intrigue – finally.
The plot pulled me in. I love medieval fiction and historical fiction, and as 100% fictional as this was there was a fabulous middle ages quality to it with the swords, iron, and dirt. The marching and walking everywhere, even 2,000 miles away. The Sers, Lords, and Ladies.
The politics are fabulously relatable as human nature, even in fiction, is still human nature. Some it’s a bit too close to home.
And the characters…
I can’t get enough of Jon Snow or Sansa Stark. And it took a small bit of time, but there was a moment when Daenerys Targaryen struck me.
She had begun harnessing her strength in her arranged marriage and stepped into her role as Khaleesi (Queen, if you haven’t watched the show…yet), and then her beloved died.
Longer story short, she becomes a leader in her own right and begins amassing an army and when she approaches the leader of a slave city that raises children just to turn them into warriors, she makes her power known.
In a swift move, she trades one of her beloved dragons to a corrupt and awful man in exchange for 8,000 soldiers, Unsullied. The moment she becomes their new owner, she frees them and then asks if they will fight for her as free men. They all remain. Then, in the tongue of the former ruler, she instructs all the newly freed soldiers to murder all the slave owners and masters that exist in the city.
She reclaims her dragon.
She wins the hearts of 8,000 men.
She fatally dupes a twisted man who had tried to take advantage of her while slamming her in what he though was a foreign-to-her language.
And it escaped my lips without intention and in full honesty: “She is fierce.”
There was palpable power around me when I watched that and when those words slid from my tongue. I felt the freedom, the intensity, and even more, the sisterhood.
Now those words ring in my ears, in my own damn voice, daily.
She is fierce.
And it got me thinking… We aren’t always or only fierce. Even Daenerys is much more than just fierce.
She is (and we are) clever, bold, scared, strong, needy, confused, loyal, principled, wanting, sad, loving, tough, stern, inflexible, creative, a reluctant leader, a confident leader, caretaker, judge, vulnerable, honest, weak, power-filled, beautiful, and so much more.
When I write the words in the image above I originally just wrote, “She is fierce.” But as I was thinking while looking at my first attempt at hand lettering, I realized it was awesome and powerful, but it was one dimensional. And the character that caused me to utter those words was anything but one dimensional.
And the women I speak to and with daily in my coaching are far from one dimensional.
So I added the word “and”.
We can be scared. And fierce.
We can be sad. And fierce.
We can feel stuck. And still be fierce.
We can be beautiful, vulnerable, needy, bold, wanting, tough, creative, and everything else we are as women and humans… AND also be fierce.
Are there ways you think of yourself as one dimensional? That there is this one big and powerful part of you that takes all the energy so it must be THE THING you are? An emotion or idea or belief about yourself that just seems to take up so much of your heart and mind that it’s all that you are at a given time? You may even feel like “Yeah, I know I’m more than this, but this is what I feel like right now.”
What if you were no longer chained by those ideas? What if they were never able to shackle you and steal time from you? What if you had such strong internal infrastructure around your own personal narrative that there simply wasn’t any room for that kind of thinking?
…and, She is Fierce.Kara andretta’s brain
This is something that will stay with me for a long time, probably always. It feeds a deep belief in my soul that we can always be bigger than the sum of our parts. We can tap into a ferocity that can move mountains when our minds are set to that place.