I Am A Woman, Both Soft And Strong

Timothy Paul Smith

I am a woman. I am giving hands and a tender heart, open ears and a body that always beckons others in, lets them rest against the beat of my chest. I am arms that spread and fold over tired souls, bring them comfort and love. I am solace. I am safety. I am soft.

I smile at people – strangers and friends alike. I’ve grown up believing that the world is beautiful and that even in the terror, even in the pain, even in the brokenness – there is still hope. And I cling to that. I hold it tight between my fingertips, even when the sun falls behind the clouds and sharp words roll off tongues.

I am a woman. I am soft. I hold my heart out in my palm and let others touch the warm surface. I listen with my eyes closed and let stories wash over my skin like rain. I speak my emotions to life, let them run wild like horses through an open field. I do not fear or hold back.

I am soft. I’ve learned to love like I am malleable because love does not stay still and stiff. I try to be gentle and kind, fill my heart with the spirit of patience. I trust because I don’t know how not to. I care because to feign indifference makes my chest ache.

I do not know how to love with less, how to be cold and distant, how to hold others at arm’s length. I am a woman with a big heart – I am soft and not afraid to love.

But I am also strong.

My body is fluid, dancing to the rhythm of the songs on the radio, humming in the light of the sun. My laughter flirts with the wind; my voice gets lost in the clouds.

My heart is powerful, a deep beat quickening with every measured step, pumping faster as I pursue all that I believe in and care for.

I love wildly, but not naively. I care passionately, but always purposely. I am soft, but also strong.

I do not let myself be taken advantage of. I take determined steps and stand my ground. I raise my voice and use my head just as much as my heart. When it comes to a crossroads, I take my time – not because I am scared or weak, but because every decision I make is calculated and thought through.

Because I am capable of choice, of belief, of being my own person, every single day.

I am a woman. I am stubborn and wild. I am tender and compassionate. I am all things bold, but also gentle. I am both loud and quiet, light and dark.

I do not fit into a box. I am not easily labeled, not always understood. Sometimes I am a little too much, but sometimes I want to be more.

But I will not be stepped on. I will not be silenced. I will not be told that my body, my mind, my spirit is a little too loud or my heart is a little too open.

When someone asks, I will not need to explain how I love, how I fight, how I live, how I continue to become the woman I am and always will be.

I will simply say, “I am a woman, both soft and strong.”
And I will let them wonder in my wake. TC mark

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