All life begins and often ends with a woman. Whether that woman consciously chose to start a life or whether that life was forced on her. It still begins with her. Inside her is a nugget of what will be a man, with the world at their fingers, with their fists full of will. Or it might be a women, thought “less than” than the other gender, raised to make beds and make the world more comfortable for everyone. Raised to lift lips for a kiss.
And within that space in the middle, between when a woman starts a life or doesn’t–she teaches the culture, she teaches the language, she teaches religion, she teaches those roles that will make babies love or hate themselves. She will say those words that will stick in their minds forever. Those words might be full or empty or questioning or frightening. Those words might comfort or guide. Those words will teach love.
Or those words might feel like dark corners. Whatever love she does or doesn’t have to give is shrouded by the fact that all life begins with her.
When it ends, woman is also there. She cleans the sweat and gives you water. She comforts and says it’s okay. She helps nurture as death comes. She’s good at it, or she isn’t. She might know only about dark corners and does her best.
It all ends in her hands.