“I was crying, it was just so powerful.”
“I feel so ready to go kick some ass.”
“Finally, Hollywood is showing some respect for women in a lead role!”
These are a few of the reactions I’ve heard from women after they saw Wonder Woman in theaters. Who can blame them? Diana Prince is a powerful Amazonian demigoddess. She defies her mother, becomes a warrior, enters a World War, acts on her gut instincts, pushes past enemy lines, weathers the death of her love interest and destroys the God of War.
Yeah, I’d be pretty jacked up, too.
Wait, did you pick up on that? That’s right, I haven’t seen it yet. Sorry. Wait, no I’m not. I have two toddlers. A husband. A full-time job. Truth is, I can barely sit down for a decent meal let alone get to a movie theater.
Like many women (and men, for that matter, but let’s stick to the script), I’ve been on the front lines of domestic parenthood.
I know women who are doing it all without a partner. I know women who are doing it all after miscarriages. I know women who don’t have kids but are spending late nights at a job while taking classes toward a second or third degree. And they’re still getting to the gym early the next morning.
These are the Wonder Women. They would never call themselves that. They just see it as getting shit done. Wanting something and unapologetically taking steps to get it.
Every day. Without being touched by a god, without special powers, without a Hollywood film crew off screen.
No one looks at a woman in a 0530 CrossFit class who just cleaned her body weight and says, “Wow, she’s strong for a woman.” No. She’s just f*****g strong. And that’s one of the great things about CrossFit – men and women are working shoulder-to-shoulder, sometimes literally, pushing themselves to equal exertions, feeling the same burn during the WOD. And at the end, if weights are set accordingly, they can compare times or scores apples-to-apples.
Many of the Wonder Women I know CrossFit. They trust someone else with the kids for an hour each day so they can get in the gym, close off the world and do something for themselves. They make the decision each day to pick up something heavier than themselves, run faster than they did the week before and learn new skills. Then the next day, they do it again.
Often, this attitude carries over to other facets of life: in the office, with their spouse, chasing a dream.
They aren’t doing it to defy a stereotype or to make a point.
Wonder Women are impressive not because they are women who are making their way – but because they are making their way. They demand respect not by evoking sympathy for how unfair a systematic hand they were dealt at birth. They simply expect it. From everyone.
The difference between Wonder Women and women who just watch Wonder Woman? They keep making these decisions every day. They believe you are what you do, not what you say you’re going to do.
So here is what I hope: I hope the women who came out of this movie in tears harness that feeling and DO something powerful. I hope they make something of their Facebook post about how “OMG so inspired” they are and work toward something real.
Did this make you think of that pipe dream or just-out-of-reach goal you’ve had on the shelf for some time? Take one step today toward that goal.
One of the Wonder Women I know happened to see Wonder Woman. Four times. So I told her about this post and asked for her impression of the movie. She said it made her feel capable. She loved how Diana listened to the advice of others and then said, “Thanks, but I’m gonna anyway.”
In her words, “I know polite women who get shit done, but I don’t know passive women who get shit done.”