INVINCIBLE Scary girl, you’re not as mean as you seem. 

NEW BLOG: INVINCIBLE, Scary girl. You’re not as mean as you seem. 
I love this picture of myself. Vain as hell I know, god forbid. 
Coming from a gal who spends most days fighting off old feelings of self contempt. Feelings grown from half a decade of DV & emotional abuse, I’m proud of myself on those days that I can take a picture and say ‘hey girl, you’re looking okay!’ 
This picture was taken after Lexi Bannister sorted out what had been years of uncut, untamed locks. Evidence of a lack of ‘self care’, a term I recently learned from the fabulous Larissa Hrstic . Part of self care in my mind, is self defence. 
Those who read my blogs often are familiar with the scars. They’re also well aware of my determination to peel them off and start anew. Peeling away scars that have been engrained in your soul takes a fire that once lit, grows. This fire has the ability to burn down the whole damn world if you’re not careful. This fire is self respect. 
These days, some weeks dozens of strangers approach me, always cautiously, to tell me how much they love my blog INVINCIBLE SHE or PIP & LOU. Always apologetic for their approach or intrusion. I’ve had girls comment on how different I am in person to what they expected, how laid back, how much I joke & how truly relatable and non-intimidating I am. 
This makes me laugh each and every time. Why are we so quick to assume that loud women, defensive women, brave women, must also be scary women. PLEASE APPROACH, it makes my whole day. I share a lot in the hope of being helpful, to know that I’m accomplishing that goes a long way to growing my fire. 
I happen to love lunch dates with complete strangers and I’ll talk to you like I’ve known you my whole life. I’m actually a lot of fun. (String me up for the humble brag). 
Organising INVINCIBLE YOUNG WOMEN OF ADVERSITY is actually so much fun. So many new friends. There is something pretty special about discovering how much you have in common with women you’ve never even met.
Self defence (the fire) is often mistaken for arrogance, meanness, loud mouthy-ness. At least that’s what those determined to put it out describe it as. They wish you’d just keep your mouth shut. Some because they lack your courage, some because it intimidates them and some because they fear you calling to account their treatment of you. 
Most don’t realise that nurturing that fire is a constant, never ending process. It’s like watering mint, if you don’t keep topping it up, it will shrivel in a few days. 
The trick to owning this fire is treating people so well that nothing the crap talkers sling sticks to you. Know that they have nothing more on your character that what goes on in their own heads, including the imaginary fight they still think you’re participating in. The poor souls don’t know that you don’t even think of them unless something forces you to. 
Speaking up for yourself requires straight honesty, with that behind you, the fire is yours girl. 
For example:
I built an insane business with my bare hands and fierce individuality. A business built from the most personal time in mine & my daughters lives. I was offered a sum for that business by a then good friend & when I refused to sell it, chunks of that business stolen, repurposed and attributed to others. 
I was loud in my defence of it’s authenticity, of the evidence proving that it was the very first of its kind. For refusing to freely hand over what I had independently built, I was labelled a bully and an opposer of the #girlgang 🙄. Did I believe this about my self…. um no! My response; proof is gold girl, I know me, I know you, we both know the damn truth. So jog on #copycat, jog on. 
I left a horrific marriage. I fought for mine and my daughters freedom and I won 10/10. Not because I’m a liar, homewreaker, drama queen attention seeker. But because domestic violence is inexcusable. Because my daughter and I are worth so much more than being some cowards emotional and physical punching bag. Because fighting back is my right and if I have to fight my whole life I will, because #iamthebearnow.
This doesn’t mean I’m scary or that any woman defending her accomplishments or independence is. Self sacrifice is not a pre requisite to being a nice person and sometimes being the ‘chronic’ nice girl will earn you nothing more than a life spent as a very well mannered door mat. 
No body wipes their feet on me anymore. If my refusal to accept that makes me intimidating, then you and I need to grab a coffee. My shout provided you have a few hours to kill (I talk… a lot!)
Perhaps those fiercely motivated, scary, intimidating, independent girls you know have a thing or two to teach you. Perhaps that one cautious approach could earn you a friend for life. 
Camille XO 

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