The fight within


Fight within Part 1

Samira arrived at her master house as she always did twenty five minutes before the time she had her schedule. She quickly went to prepare the room where Fatima would receive her to discuss the current issues that were bothering her at the moment. She swiped out the floor and opened the window to let sun lights in. She took of the dust that was on Fatima chair with a tissue that threw in the garbage. She went inside the cupboard that was in that room and took five cushions. She carefully placed them in Fatima chair. The first was for her back, the second and third one were for each side of the chair in order to support her arms, the fourth one was for her feet and the last one was for her thighs. She prepared green tea and she brought it with two empty tea glasses on the small table that was at the right side of Fatima chair. She took from her bag a small red and green embroidered carpet that she opened in front of the Fatima chair. She sat on and looked around to see if she had not forgotten anything. He eyes scanned the room to see if there was anything she did not think about. Since everything was done, she did her prayers. She asked God to bless the moment she was going to spend with Fatima and thanked God for the past advises that she received from her. She implored God to give her master a long life and that his guidance continues to come out from Fatima mouth.

 As soon as she finished her prayers, Fatima entered the room. Samira brought her head down as a sign of respect. Fatima advanced to her chair and she sat. She said immediately thank you for everything. She turned to the tea and she poured it into the two glasses. She gave the first one to Samira and she took the second one. While drinking her tea, Fatima was careful. She did not look at Samira. It was as if she was listening to or watching what was going on. Samira was accustomed to those moments of silence at the beginning of their meeting. She had learnt with time to use that time to focus on what she was going to say to Fatima when she would authorize her to speak. Therefore, during their first cup of tea, she usually recapped and verified once again the reasons that led her to Fatima. When they finished their tea, Fatima left her glass on the table and Samira left hers on the floor next to her.

Fatima invited her to pray before they started their session. Fatima led the prayer. Her prayer consisted on thanking God for what was going to happen between them. She thanked him for the exchange that was going to take place. She added that she thanked God for bringing Samira, a devoted master and student in her life and for the opportunity to learn and share the little she knew about life. She stressed during the prayer that she was more a disciple of Samira than Samira was hers. She thanked Samira for all the attention, care and lessons she taught her so far and the many more to come. She asked God to continue to bless the relationship they had developed. When the prayer was over, Fatima asked Samira tea glass and she poured some more tea into it and gave it to her before doing the same for herself. After the first sip, Fatima asked her with a large smile what brought her in.

Before starting, Samira thanked her for receiving her again. She told her that she had realized that she had been confused all her life with two images in her head. They were battling each other and she did not know how to stop the fight. She tried everything but she had not been able to resolve it. She seemed to have two different drastic images of what a woman should be. The moment she accepted one, everything in her reject it and when she switched to the other, everything in her told her to go back to the first one. She explained that she was going from one to the other without knowing where to stabilize herself.

Fatima listened till she finished and she asked her what were those two images. Samira said that as soon as she was meeting a man, she immediately thought of marriage and the children they could have. Even if they had nothing in common or even if nothing was going to happen between them. Her mind was always going in that direction. She could not help it. The moment she met someone, those ideas were coming in her head right away as if she was programmed to think this way even if the person was not her style. The moment they would laugh a little, she immersed herself into these thoughts. This girl wanted marriage, kids, a house, and to support her husband and children in any way. Her goal was for her family and nothing else. She did not want to create many problems therefore she was going to work and then stay at home after. She said that she viewed this girl like the perfect girl.

The second image she had was more of a free girl who could sleep with everybody and go out anytime she wanted. She wanted to organize parties, to dance, to get drunk, to use drugs, to travel and to try everything that there was in this world.

She kept on wanting to be either one or the other. Her reality though has proven to her that the moment she was with someone who was ready to get married, she did not want to. She did everything to stop it. She wanted her freedom at all costs and she did everything she could to break the relationship. She was almost bored. She had once been in a relation like that but she found that it was missing something. It was too blah. She felt trapped into it. She had the impression she could not get out of it.

When she went out with men who were only interested in sex and gave her all the freedom she wanted, at the beginning she loved it and it was fun. With time, she realized that she could not cope with it because she felt used like meat or chicken. It is true that she was doing the same but the first image was badly scratched every time she was doing that. She could not handle it and she was hurt by it. She needed more consideration. Feeling just like s skin was not enough for her. Confronted with that problematic, she usually wanted those guys to become more like the first image of woman she had. She wanted to change them. She tried to convince them by using many arguments to be careful of the way they were behaving because they could be seen as male whore. Before they met Samira, those men were not disturbed by the image they were projecting to the world but after speaking with her, they felt either disappointed and they left her or they felt bad and tried to change which they were not able to because it had never been their objective. At the end of the day, they kept on acting freely. The more those men behaved freely, the more freely she was acting as if she was competing with men. The result was that she felt even more like a whore.

The moment she was with a man, she wanted to give him all his freedom because she could not bear that someone would restrict hers. Every time she had given that freedom, she had felt good because it took away from her many troubles. She was neither jealous, envious nor suspicious. She had a great peace of mind because of that attitude. Unfortunately, the freedom she gave was misused and misinterpreted.

Because she gave that freedom, some men she had been with used it to control her. The lack of jealousy and suspiciousness she shown became a treat for them and they started to verify everything she was doing. They did not realize that it was only causing her to do the things they were trying to stop her from doing.

Every time they tried to control her, she put many efforts to reason and to appease them. She managed to successfully handle that. The problem was that even if she succeeded to calm their insecurity, immediately after, something else always came in their mind that pushed them to question her even more.

After several attempts to diffuse their jealousy, her mind went in a different direction. It was asking her who was that man who wanted to restrict her at that time? Why shouldn’t she do the things that she wanted especially when she was letting him do everything they wanted to do? Who were they to stop her? Where was it written that she could not do it? Who were they to try to control her? Then she would always try to fight against those ideas when they came. She usually told herself that she should not react like that. It was not because those men were acting stupidly that she should prove them that she could do anything she wanted by doing the things she would not have considered doing if she was in a regular environment.

She told herself that their insecurities should not dictate her behaviour and should not force her to become something she is not. It was not because they were sleeping around and were scared that she could do the same thing and were expressing it by trying to control her that as a counter-reaction she should go out and sleep around with anybody just to prove that nobody controlled her. She told herself that she should not become a whore because they were unsecured male whore.

After a while those arguments fell down maybe because of the increased pressure of control that was exercised on her by those men and her own defence mechanism that went from trying to accommodate them to I am going to show them what I am capable of. I am going to give you so many reasons to freak out that you will feel that the insecurities you feel now were the best moments of your life. At the end of the day, she always ended up doing it.

Something inside her pushed her to do the contrary of what they wanted. The more she did that, the more enraged and scared they were and they more they wanted to control her. Consequently, the more control they wanted over her, the more freedom she desired and looked for and the crazier they became. Samira remembered that when she had the freedom to do anything she wanted, she never thought of doing anything but if she felt even the slightest restriction, she just did everything to do what she was restrained from doing.

Fatima looked at her for a moment and she took another sip of her tea.

The fight within part 2

Fatima looked at her and around the room. She contemplated Samira for a long moment then she looked outside of the window. Samira was looking down a little bite embarrassed and confused as to what the silence and Fatima’s look meant for her. She took a sip of tea and carefully put it back on the floor next to her carpet as if she did not want to interrupt the silence Fatima was into.

Fatima took a long breathing and said that she saw two sides of the same situation. The expression of that problem was going in two ways. She told Samira that she did not know what it meant to be a woman. She was confused by those two images of a woman or girl because those were the only pictures of woman she had in her life. She said that there was a place for many different types of women between the whore and the Saint woman.

Unfortunately, she did not give herself a chance to explore the diversity of possible women within her until she found the one that best suited her. She was trapped between those two opposite images and there was nothing in between. Anything that was in between had to be categorized as either a whore or a Saint. Those two images were so strongly installed in her mind that they did not allow her to even try to see if there might be something different and how she felt about it.

The “perfect girl” was the ideal woman for her. She was judging her behaviour according to that image. Anything that was different from the so called “perfect woman or Saint one” fell in the category of a whore.

It was quite surprising for Fatima because even though Samira was surrounded by newspapers, magazines and televisions which were showing different types of women, she was not able to integrate in her mind that the image of the “Saint woman” was only an image that was glorified back in the days in her family and inside her circle of friends. She was raised to love the “Saint one” and anything else fell under the radar of whore.

There was an unseen pressure that was put in Samira mind and head without her ever noticing or knowing about it. The image of the “Saint one” was encircling her and every time she was doing anything that slightly diverted from that image, she felt ashamed, bad and guilty. 

It was torturing her so much that she had to pray and ask for forgiveness for behaving like a whore. After doing that, she ran back to protect herself against the evil temptation of a so called “whore life” by rolling herself up into the precepts of “the Saint one”. When the pressure of being under the robe of the “perfect one” was too high, she tried something else that would put right back in the category of a whore. As always the same actions gave the same consequences. After trying, the guilt and the shame would come again and she would take refuge into prayer and conforming herself to the life of a “Saint one”. She was running in circles all the times.

Without her realizing, deep down deep inside her, she knew something was wrong about that image. She wanted to run away from the torture this image was exercising on her. Her rejection of control by anyone was the direct consequences of the fact that she knew she was controlled by something but she could not catch what it was.

Therefore everything or everyone that was coming to her, she felt like she had to defend herself against it fearing that at the end they might try to control her. She only saw in the actions of people surrounding her something that was up to control her.

She actually never made the connection that she was fighting against the control of her mind by that image of a “perfect woman”. Conforming herself to that image was a burden that was too heavy on her but she could not do otherwise because she did not know better. Her lack of understanding of this process made her go back and forth from one image the next. She always felt trapped whether it be by marriage or by relationship because she was trapped in her mind by that image.

She was like a swordsman who was fighting against people around her whom she said wanted to control her when all she wanted was to get away from the control that image had on her. She was killing real people in order to get rid of a fake image. Her real problem was based on a fake image that was put in her head a long time ago and she did not even remember it anymore. She was just suffering the consequences of it.

The people in her family who inserted that pressure inside her head did not even know that they were doing a disservice to her. They were just continuing what they have learnt in their traditions and customs. This is how they were raised. This image was introduced at such an early age that, it became their beliefs and they were not ready to abandon it. They identified themselves with this pressure and justified it with everything they were doing. They were ready to fight for it.

Samira had adopted her ancestral traditions and had a difficulty to live by the standards of her customs. It did not stop her from experiencing what was qualified in her family as a “whore life”. Unfortunately she could not enjoy it to the fullest because she was the first and quick to judge her behaviour. Every time she was doing something that was not inside the moral code, she could not fully enjoyed it. She had to hide herself because she was scared of being seen by her family even though they were not around.

The interdictions and restrictions only increased her attraction for a “trashy life”. Participating in that life became the most alluring thing for her. She developed a taste for anything that would push her to live that life. She used anything and everybody around her as an excuse to come closer to the life she was not allowed to have. Every time she felt controlled by her boyfriends or family or even friends, she went to sleep with somebody or do something that she was not supposed to.

When her family told her that she should not go out with boys, she did the exact opposite and slept with them. It was the same thing with her boyfriends. When her boyfriends or her family authorized her to do whatever she wanted, she found them boring. The “life of whore” did not attract her. She needed to be restricted to be excited by that life. Indeed every time she was with a boyfriend who was calmed and did not want to control her, she felt uncomfortable. She sometimes advocated to those boyfriends the necessity for her to be controlled. She needed to be restricted in order for her to authorize herself to experience the life that was forbidden to her. If there were no restrictions, she did not feel the need to do it and her life was not exciting.

Even when she gave the freedom to her boyfriends to do anything they wanted, it was only a way for her to put them in a place where they would do something that they were not supposed to. Eventually they would come back to control her and she would be able to jump into the “trashy life” she had always wanted to be in.

She could not see her life any different than being controlled and she was desperately trying to fight it, she surrounded herself with people who wanted to control her in order to fight them. Her outside world was only a reflection of what was going on inside her mind. She could not see her life differently than how her mind was. She was controlled in her mind therefore, she had to be controlled in reality. It could not be otherwise.

The fight Within Part 3 and Final

Fatima paused for a moment to drink her tea. She told Samira that even when she was competing with men, it was only a caricature of behaviour because it only shown that she wanted to escape the control she felt. She was acting as such just to prove herself that she was not control and that she could do what men were doing. She thought that acting like a man was the ultimate proof of her freedom. There was nothing wrong about behaving like a man but as long as it was done consciously and calmly without losing sight of why she was doing it. It should have been what she wanted to do not something she was doing in reaction to something she did not even know. Instead, Samira found in behaving like a man another way to fall into perversity. It was not the experience of being a man she was after it was transgressing what was forbidden to her by her family and boyfriends. She did not care about feeling what or how it was to be man but rather to enjoy it as long as it was viewed by her mind as something perverse or trashy. Anything that would make her feels like she was living a degrading life was exciting her very much.

She was not comfortable with both the “perfect girl” and the “whore” images in her head. She did not accept herself and the life she was living. Even though she shown the world otherwise, she detested every aspect of her. She wanted to destroy all of it and in order to do that, she was calling for everything that would put her in a situation where she would be and felt trashed.

The only way for her to survive was to believe that she was trashy and to be as trashy as possible. Her experiences had shown her that she would be much better of being a “naughty girl” because at least she would know why she felt guilty. Being a perfect girl only created a huge tension inside her that ultimately led her to behave at the end like the “trashy one”. If by any chance she was other than that, she knew could not resist the call of the “trashy life”. Her mind demanded it and was desperately crying out loud for a taste of it.

Of course it goes without saying that everything was done while showing to the outside world that she was a “perfect girl”. As long as she portrayed to her entourage the image of the “perfect girl”, she was happy. It was therefore the superposition of three fake images. She had first her internal fight between what was supposed to be a “perfect girl” and what was supposed to a “trashy one”, second the life of a supposedly trashy girl she was living, third the strong desire to be a man and fourth, she had to show the world the image of a “perfect girl”.

What was even more distorted was that she was trying to fit an image of the man that was inserted in her mind by her family. She was running away from the image of woman that was false to join the image of man that was also false. She tried to be something that was not real because she did not want to be something that was not real as well. None of those images were true. Her desire to be free resulted in her several attempts to fit the image of a man that was put in her head by her family. Unfortunately for her, even that was nothing close to reality. She was trying to become something that was not real. Her behaviour only proved that her mind was controlled by the emphasis her family put on the benefits she would gain if she embarrassed and lived according to the standards of the image of a “perfect girl”.

Samira was listening and was amazed as always when Fatima was talking. The explanations she just heard were unexpected. She did not know what she was supposed to do with those. She had no idea as to what would be her next steps after these revelations were brought up to her. She was just stunned.

Fatima poured some tea in her glass and she drunk it. Fatima was just looking at her now without saying anything. She told her to breathe in and out and to let the information she received to enter inside her. Fatima added that for the moment, Samira just needed to be with this new vision of her. She should not try to fix things right away. She should just observe herself in her every day life and surprise her own behaviour toward the people around her. She would learn a lot by just looking at things.

Fatima told her that she needed to familiarize herself with these new notions she gave her. She needed to swallow and digest them in order to make them her own. Even if she believed Fatima, her habits were so strongly inserted that she could not change them right away. There was no magic formula or quick fix.

It would take time before she would be able to experience within her body what it meant to be a woman without any feeling of shame or guilt. Later on she would even be able to experience how it is to do what men do without it being a reaction to something else. Providing that after all those discoveries, she still has the urge to live and go through those experiences, she would do it out of love for her.

So far her actions were done because she hated the person she was. She was not able to be the “perfect girl” that her family wanted her to be. She was not able to handle the “whore and trashy life’ that she wanted to live and was living. In both cases, it was with a lot of disdain that she looked at herself. By having a better understanding and compassion for herself and what she was going through, she would have the tools to support her quest whatever it might be with no judgement. 

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