A SWaNK Take on the Declaration of Independence

Happy Independence Day to all SWaNKs and SWaNK supporters in the U.S.A. This is a day for us to celebrate not just our country’s independence, but our own independence as well. Here’s to being independent.

Today is July 4th, a day that most Americans are out at parades and festivals, picnicking in parks, barbequing, watching fireworks, hanging out with friends and family and celebrating the day that marks the signing of the Declaration of Independence which officially declared the separation of the country from the Kingdom of Great Britain back in 1776. For some people, it’s merely a day to celebrate a day off of work and for other’s it’s a party.

I wondered this morning what it would be like to write up a Declaration of Independence for women around the world and thought that perhaps I would give it a try by starting with a quick edit of the other Declaration of Independence and then add a few items here and there. Here are some excerpts and additions from the SWaNK Evolution Declaration of Independence.

Excerpt #1:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men HUMANS are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights INCLUDING THE RIGHT TO CHOOSE WHAT WE DO WITH OUR BODIES, that among these are Life, CHOICE, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness WITH OR WITHOUT BEING MARRIED OR HAVING CHILDREN.

Excerpt #2:

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress OUR DRESSES AND PUT ON SOME PANTS in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury (STOP THE ABUSE). A Prince (WHO ARE THEY CALLING A PRINCE?) whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Excerpt #3: 

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British ANYONE WHO BELIEVES WOMEN ARE NOT EQUAL TO MEN brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. BEAUTY, BRAINS, INNER WISDOM, COMPASSION, ABILITY TO NURTURE, CAPABILITIES, AND ENDLESS OTHER QUALITIES THAT ARE BENEFICIAL TO HUMANKIND.

Additions: 

The Rights of All Humankind:

– To have the freedom to choose marriage or not without being judged by others

– To have the freedom to choose parenthood or not without being judged by others

– To have the freedom to choose a career or not without being judged by others

– To have the freedom to choose to cook or not without being judged by others

– To have the freedom to choose to clean or not without being judged by others

– To have the freedom to wear pants (or panties for that matter) or not without being judged by others

– To have the freedom to speak our minds or not without being judged by others

– To have the freedom to be 100% WHO WE ARE without being judged by others

Happy Independence Day EVERYONE!

Hey, What About Us Non-Mothers? How About a “Day” for Us?

Today is Mother’s Day in Canada and the United States. Other countries around the world celebrate it too, but not necessarily on the same day. It is a worldwide celebration of motherhood, mothering and all-things-and-people “mother”. So where does that leave SWaNKs on this day? Well, even though SWaNKs have mothers (if they didn’t they wouldn’t be alive), they themselves are not mothers, which means that nobody is celebrating them. If their mothers are alive and well, they can choose to celebrate their mothers by taking them to a play or out for dinner at their favorite restaurant or on a trip or whatever the gift or celebration may be, or celebrate them in their own way if they have mother’s who are deceased to honor them, but there is no celebration for those of us who have chosen or found ourselves to be childless and not mothers.

On a day like today when “everyone and their mothers” – literally – seemed to be out and about heading to nice restaurants for brunch with flowers and gifts in hand for mom and grandma, I sat on a bench people-watching and observing this phenomena and wondered, “Hhhhhmmmm, I think there should be a day that is officially dedicated to the celebration of SWaNKs!” I mean, we have just as much to offer and just as much love to give and deserve to be celebrated as much as the women who pushed babies out of her uteruses or adopted a child, right? I say, “heck ya!”

So now the question is, when shall it be? Perhaps SWaNK Day is the day before Mother’s Day so we can have our say first and steal the show away from moms. We would be the cause of all the flowers being sold out at the floral shops and all the chocolates hoarded from Godiva before people have a chance to buy them for their mothers? How does that sounds? That’s what I thought. Not very nice. Or how about the week after so our loved ones can take advantage of the discounted Mother’s Day merchandise at retail stores when they go out to buy us flowers and gifts? Well? Not good either. Because then we’d be getting the leftovers. Or should it be on a day that is politically or spiritually significant to single women who don’t have kids and if so, what day would that be? Oprah’s birthday? I don’t think so, but getting closer.

Well, regardless of what day it ends up being, I see a day when millions of SWaNKs are being honored and celebrated for who they are and who they’ve chosen to be. Celebrated on that same day every year by millions of their supporters and admirers and even a day when Hallmark creates a card with “Happy SWaNK Day” on it!

A Long Way From Being Dragged By The Hair Into The Cave.

Today’s modern woman, and in particular SWaNKs, tend to be more educated than they were ten, twenty and most certainly a hundred years ago. The culture around women has evolved in ways unimaginable by the burly caveman who dragged his female counterpart by the hair into the cave for some procreating.

Even “Women’s Lib” is a term that sounds almost archaic now and feminism has taken on many other layers that go much deeper than women just having a voice in the home, workplace and in politics.

Independent, educated, career-minded women are blending in more and more as part of mainstream society, yet we really are not part of the majority. At least not yet. We walk around unnoticed in a sea of people out there in the world. At first glance one would not know whether a woman is single or whether she has children or not, unless her children are with her. However, even if she is seen with children one would not know if they were her children or not. It requires a bit of conversation to determine whether or not a woman is actually single and without children of her own. So, in that sense, we are seamlessly blending in with the “crowd”. We slither around mainstream society until people find us out by asking us those telling questions that eventually bring the truth out about our singleness and childlessness. There is nothing external that gives us away. We are all shapes and a sizes. We are all of different races, cultures and religious backgrounds. Nobody will ever know unless they ask.

But what happens when people do find out that we are single and have no kids especially when we are “older” women? What is swirling around in the heads of the curious. And curious they are. There is no doubt in my mind that questions arise in the minds of those who have been trained to believe that in order to live a full life one must get married and have children.

But, I must say that living in an urban environment like the San Francisco Bay Area, that there seems to be a lot more understanding of career-women, many of whom have chosen to be single, childfree and focused on their careers. I, for one, have enjoyed giving “birth” to so many other things that don’t require diaper changing and constant worry about how well it is doing in school, like creating my artwork, creating entrepreneurial ventures and producing a new event and even creating this seedling of a social movement. The process around creating something and nurturing something doesn’t necessarily have to include a uterus.

I am thankful that women have forged their way in industrialized societies over the centuries and look forward to the day when we can all truly be proud to be SWaNKs and confident that when others learn that we are single and without children that we are not being judged or silently criticized. My hope is that one day all lifestyles can be celebrated.

Copyright 2013 Carolyn Quan / Dream World Media LLC. All rights reserved.
The entire content of this website is copyright protected and is the intellectual property of Carolyn Quan and Dream World Media LLC.
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