because life doesn’t fit in a file folder

Call Me RACHEL: #BOAW2018

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Last night, I started painting too late.

I was tired.

I tried to rest, but I saw her.

Fully formed.

So I had to get up and, at least, start her.

And then I couldn’t stop.

RACHEL is an 16×20 original featuring acrylic paint, vintage papers, oil pastels, colored pencils and one tiny gemstone right alongside her nose. Signed and ready to hang. Contact me if you’re interested in purchasing this or any of my work.

This is RACHEL.

My entire life, strangers have called me Rachel. It happens nearly every day.

For the purposes of brevity, let’s just say I understand Rachel. I understand what motivates her, what she needs, her insecurities and shortcomings. Rachel is kind of my alter ego, I guess. When I’m happy, you’ll know it. When I’m mad, you’ll know about that, too.

Consider the Biblical Rachel. To an outside observer, Rachel appeared to have everything in life—physical beauty, all the material things she needed, and the devotion of a loving husband. But Rachel wanted more. She had to have everything she wanted or life was not worth living. She was envious, selfish, peevish, fretful, discontented, and demanding.

I’ll own that I’m not the easiest person to be with in relationship.

I’m not a conventional girl.

I will not demur.

Like Rachel in the Torah, I have my own needs, aspirations and dreams. And while I’m happy to support the man in my life emotionally, I expect the same kind of affirmation, support and validation. I require a lot of affection.

I like how my RACHEL appears rather mermaid-ish, too. That wasn’t intentional, but it comes through loud and clear. It’s a dream of mine to eventually live closer to the ocean, and I crave the sun and the sea.

Truth be told, I often feel like a fish out of water and relate to these mythological creatures who choose to give up their lives in one place to follow the love to another place. Mermaids are known for their passionate singing and are forever blamed for luring men to the shallows, causing sailors to wreck their ships. But why should a woman be blamed for expressing herself? Why don’t folks think less of the men for losing focus and becoming distracted?

My entire life I’ve challenged social norms. People tell me I think too much. For what? A girl? Who would ever say that to a man? I’ve been told to be quiet and just be a go-along girl.

Never again.

My RACHEL is subversive.

She gets people to listen to her and she gets what she wants.

Plus she’s sexy as hell.

What name do people call you?

This post is part of The Beauty of a Woman BlogFest VII! To read more entries, and potentially win a fun prize, visit the fest page (link this to http://www.augustmclaughlin.com/beauty-woman-blogfest-vii/) on August’s McLaughlin’s site between today and 11pm PST March 9th.

23 thoughts on “Call Me RACHEL: #BOAW2018

  1. Better yet, what do you think your missing?Day

    1. I don’t think I’m missing anything. 🙂 And thanks for the reminder to empower myself.

  2. If this is Rachel and she’s your alter-ego, does that mean you’ll be posing nude?

    Seriously, I think a real man appreciates some spunk in a woman. A man who wants a doormat probably isn’t much of a man.

    Just be Renee! That’s quite a lot of woman.

    1. I won’t be posing nude, david, but I’m really pleased with how I feel in my body these days…so you’ll probably like the post that I put out there this morning. I’ll be interested to hear your thoughts. (On the content AND the photo.)

  3. Hi, Rachael! Or Renee. You strike me as a caring, down-to-earth kind of person who knows what she wants and takes appropriate steps to get there. There is nothing to fault you for in that respect. I thought the biblical Rachael was one to often employ methods that weren’t quite ethical, which is hardly how I see you. As to your question, I don’t think you are missing anything. You have been blessed with a good heart that is fueled by the fire of your inner Rachael – what is there not to appreciate? Do some people consider you to be stubborn? Or are you just strong-willed? Do they say you are pushy? Or do you simply have a strong desire to achieve your goals? It’s not just about reaching the goal but how you get there that provides true satisfaction.

    1. There are many ways to interpret the story of Rachel in the Torah. One person’s “troublemaker” is another person’s “mover & shaker.” Rachel got shit done. I relate to her. I’m surprised my mother hasn’t chimed in to tell the world that I wanted to be called Rachel for a time as a little girl. Thanks for your comment!

  4. I love your Rachel. She is beautiful and mystical all in one. You did a great job!

    1. Thank you! And thank you for coming by to see my work. 🙂

  5. Great back story. I can relate as being a ‘R’ name also ‘Rebecca’ I frequently get called Rachel! It used to really annoy me but once I began to think of it as my ‘default name,’ then I could then laugh it off.
    Rebecca Faull

    1. Read the feminist analysis for Rachel. It’s fascinating…and I think it fits me as a benzo survivor. 😉 Thank you for leaving me a comment.

  6. I love your Rachael. I love your words. In Hebrew you are called Rachael. You are a perfectionist.
    I adore when you are happy…we all have good and bad days As a Mom I love you very much.

    1. Hi mom! I thought you’d pipe in the tell the world how I wanted to be called Rachel for a time when I was in elementary school. Do you remember that? I am definitely a perfectionist, but we all are in our own ways.

  7. This Rachel has secrets. She keeps them in a journal. She actually likes to look at the journal and read them, secretly hopes someone will find it.

    1. Damn, Eli.

      That’s some good stuff right there.

      You know you some Rachel.

      (And apparently, you know me, too.)

  8. That painting is gorgeous! And I love that you live outside the conventional/societal ideas of what a good woman “should” be. We’re all so unique and vibrant, and mermaids absolutely rock. 🙂

    Thanks for bringing this to the fest!

    1. I’m sorry I was late to the party this year! There are so many great entries! I have been LOVING your podcasts! I get dressed to them in the morning. Yesterday, I listened to “MEN WITH PENISES” ~ you are doing such great stuff! SOOoooo proud to know you!

  9. Rachel is a vision and I love your exploration of who she is and who you are.

    1. Hi Audrey: I apologize for the delayed response: my blog stopped notifying me when people left comments. Thank you so much for your thoughtful response about the painting I did for #BOAW2018.

  10. People who know me well and like me call me Shan, even if they know it’s not the entirety of my “official” first name. Those who know me less well, or care less whether I’m happy, tend to call me by my birth name, or a nickname I was given before I was old enough to know what nicknames were.

    I prefer Shan.

    And I love your post, and your art. Thank you for sharing them with us!

    1. Hi Shan! Thank you so much for your thoughtful response. I apologize for the delayed response: my blog stopped notifying me when people left comments. Needless to say, I’ve had quite a load! I have two SHans in my life, both of who are wonderful. Just thought I’d tell you than you’re in good company. 🙂

  11. This is such a kick-ass post!!! First off, your artwork is amazing! I love her gaze as she’s looking back over her shoulder. It’s truly enchanting. Keep on fighting those social norms!!! I too, have been told I “think too much”. As you point out, I’ve never heard anyone say that to a man. I think the people who tell us that are just cowards. They’re afraid of our minds and our power. They erroneously believe that shining our light makes theirs dimmer.

  12. Your painting is gorgeous and your post is very cool. You’re a strong woman any way you look at it!

    1. Hi Lynn! I’m so sorry about the delayed response. My blog stopped sending me email notifications when I received a response. I’m so glad that you came over to look at my post. XORASJ

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