Nov 7, 2020

The Week That Was. 'More Than A Woman, - Caitlin Moran.

In Audible news this week, I'm listening to 'More Than A Woman', written and narrated by Catilin Moran.

Make a cup of tea or get yourself a coffee because there's much to discuss.

Both about the book and the week that was and about being 'More Than A Woman'.

The week has been a mix of sunny days pausing in the after school traffic so that a film crew may do its thing on location and other sunny but a bit more panicked days pausing at school being grateful to have made it before after care closes.

The reason for my Friday afternoon pick up panic?  My phone.  It suffered a crippling attack of the green then black screen with a touch of 'loud siren wailing' when attempts were made to switch it off and restart it.  No one on my team could fix the problem.  Even the youngest members.  

And so began a long afternoon commuting back and forth to the Apple Store down the road from work to get it fixed in between work meetings.  It's all good, I'm happy to say.  My screen got replaced for free and I was spared having to buy a new phone and all the new bits and pieces that would entail.

Don't worry, I'm getting to Caitlin Moran.  This is all by way of preamble.

In my younger, pre mum years, an afternoon off work on a weekday being practically forced to roam Broadway was The Dream.  These days, it's actually quite stressful.  I had my eye more on my watch than I did on the inventively displayed merchandise before me.  

K Mart didn't have the air fryer accessories I was looking for,  Priceline had the sports headbands I needed though.  I researched two perfumes I was pondering as my Christmas gift to self and found a winner (Santal 33 by the way).  

And that was it.  All the non grocery shopping I needed to do.

Without my phone, the remaining time just dragged by.  I couldn't catch up on emails, check WhatsApp, go down rabbit holes on the socials.

It's a fact in 2020, isn't it?  So much of our daily lives are lived through our phones and being without them involuntarily for even a few hours on a work day is challenging.  

I can't write a post in November without sharing a status photo on behalf of my favourite jacaranda tree.

In true covid living style, conference time has stayed local with my connecting via Zoom as I sit in the park on a picnic rug watching Saturday soccer.

Caitlin Moran. we're ready for you now.

Unqilo cashmere?

Please explain, SSG.

'More Than A Woman' is Caitlin Moran's manifesto for the modern day, middle aged woman.  Uniqlo cashmere is a wardrobe staple for many a modern day, middle aged woman; ergo an opening chapter of 'More Than A Woman' features a middle aged woman (Moran) clad in Uniqlo cashmere visiting her younger self with words of wisdom and a (confronting) visual from the future.  

'More Than A Woman' is a superhuman of many roles, ambitions and dreams.  She is a survivor of many, many life defining experiences.  She speaks with a voice that loves, humours, empathisizes, motivates and provokes.

Moran has written the novel as a timeline of the average day a woman may find herself living on any given day of the week.  As the day progresses, so too do the protagonists as they walk the tightrope of ageing.  The cosmetic changes of becoming a middle aged woman and the freedom that comes with self confidence and self love.  The ageing of parents and the gut wrenching reality that death is a certainty for us all.  The maturing of our children and how best we can support them in this new world of 24 hour connectivenss, social media and the evolving roles of the young women and men that will be its future.  These difficult, sometimes painful concepts are discussed with warmth and empathy while also firmly prodding the reader to think, act and change their immediate world.  There were moments that I cried ugly tears under my sunglasses in the car feeling the pain and grief in Moran's vignettes.

On the world of women with fame and influence, Moran observes that society and the media view these individuals not just as woman talented and sccuessful in their chosen field but also as a woman who represents the cause of all women.  It's a dual burden few can successfully carry and sadly, the world is often quick to savage those who do not live up to their impossible expectations.

There are so many 'YES!!!' moments in 'More Than A Woman'.  At times, Moran could be my own mother with her plainly worded truths.  The truths one doesn't want to hear but that nevertheless stay in your mind and give you strength as you face the hard and ugly times.

Moran's advice for the working mother (where work is paid employment outside of the home) is to keep at it even if the dollars don't add up at the moment and you often feel as if you're failing at work, mothering and life simultaneously.  That paid employment is a safety net.  It empowers.  It is a key to independence and sanity should the unthinkable happen.  It will keep you afloat even when the honeymoon is over....

We are all 'More Than A Woman' whether we know it or not.  And we need to keep using that 'more' for the good not only of ourselves but of those around us.  Moran's writing here stirred something in my heart and mind.  An energy and a focus that I guess both were depleted by the distractions of everyday life.

Have you read 'More Than A Woman'?  How has it affected you?

1 comment:

  1. It's amazing how attached we are to our phones thesedays and how much we rely on them for everything! Glad you got it fixed x

    Di from Max The Unicorn


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