Watch Where You’re Swinging That Pendulum

After 3.5 years deeply immersed into the College Culture, I graduated from Taylor University knowing one thing for sure:

There are two types of college aged women in the world:

1. The “Ring Before Spring” Girls. (Also known as the “MRS degree” culture.)


2. The lovely, “No ring, ever, ever. Guys suck. I don’t need a husband. Who wants to be a parent? No husbands until I’m 3o, if even then. Probably never. I might pursue a lifetime of celibacy and buy 30 cats while I’m at it,” ladies.

I have PROUDLY assumed both of these roles at some time in my life, and while there are extremes of both, we are all rooted somewhere on this spectrum.

I have felt looked down on for each role I took by those who stood the other ground.

And the ugly part- I have also looked down on the people standing opposite of me.

Honestly, ladies, this is just something we do to each other more regularly than we think, but it is something that stands in the way on our journey to lovely, so it is something that I think should be addressed.

The pendulum.

I’m going to start by saying that I really don’t think there is a wrong way to be a woman. Career ladies, they kick ass. Mothers, they kick just as much ass.

I think we’ve come so far in life for me to be able to say that. We are finally getting opportunities to do whatever and be whoever we want to be.

That’s huge. I know it’s just what we know, but take a step back and think about cultures where men beat women over the fact that they birthed a little girl, another woman! That happens. That’s how inferior other cultures see women (we won’t even go into the irony of sex, biology, and what determines gender in reproduction….).

We are finally at a time where a woman can be a mother at 20 or at 40. A woman can pursue a career, a family, or get this, BOTH. But the irony of it all, is women tend to be the ones who say what is right and wrong with another women’s choice… It’s not always a boss or a family counselor, nope it’s not even Trump. It is women telling other women how they should live. Fellow beautiful, driven women are often the ones putting down fellow beautiful, driven women.

Think about your own decisions about motherhood, marriage, careers. How many times did you consider someone else, or someone else’s opinion, when coming to YOUR OWN life decision.

I don’t think it is so much of seeing a ring before spring and saying, “I want that,” like we tend to believe. I think it was way more seeing a “ring before spring,” and saying, “Never. I don’t want that. I don’t want to be like her, like all of them.”

But in a sense, isn’t that still influencing your opinion in a way that it probably shouldn’t?

For so long the pendulum was on one side. Every woman saw what was expected of them and then lived it.

It took a long time and a LOT of brave and bold women to shove that pendulum, that shallow expectation, out of their way, but where did it swing? Where did it land?

Who is it restricting now?

I say this from experience–

Deciding you never want to be married, ONLY because everyone around you is getting married, is just as bad as getting married simply because culture says you’re supposed to.

Deciding you want to wait until 35 to have kids ONLY because everyone around you is having them at 24 is just as bad saying you’ll have them at 24 because that’s what is expected.

Denying yourself of ANYTHING, not because you don’t want it, but because you want to be different than the people around you, controls you, your decisions, your restrictions, and your pendulum just as much as following the crowd.

Watch how you judge yourself, watch how you judge others, and LORD HAVE MERCY, watch where you’re swinging that pendulum.

Check your motivation- is this thing really not in the cards for you yet, or ever, or are you trying so hard to avoid marching to the beat of someone else’s drum that you fall off beat to your own?

Watch where you’re swinging that pendulum.

Check your superiority complex- Just because this plan seems best for you, your finances, your lifestyle, do you assume that your plan, your timing, is the best for everyone? Do you turn your nose at those living different, or dare I say, “more classical,” timelines?

Watch where you’re swinging that pendulum.

Check your language- Maybe you just, “can’t imagine tying yourself down to a man.” Maybe having a baby at your age seems, “completely impractical and restraining to your lifestyle” But that’s not the truth for someone else, maybe that person you’re saying these things to. Maybe they’re in love. Maybe they see children in the near future… maybe they can “imagine it.” More than that, maybe they desire, long for, strive for it. That’s okay. Does your language, the way you talk about this, let them know that what they want is just as okay as what you want?

Watch where you’re swinging that pendulum.

Being a woman is already so much pressure. Sometimes we feel that we have to defend every decision we make. Sometimes we have to shove that pendulum out of our way. If you feel condescended for making decisions for your own life, then shove that pendulum, dang it. Make way for yourself to live like you want… just make sure you aren’t knocking other women down when you shove it.

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