Unleashing Your Vixen: Some Serious Thoughts

Do you ever have those moments when clarity comes up behind you with a baseball bat and beats the hell out of you?
You get up, groggy, woozy, disoriented, but shit, you know better now, man.
I’ve been avoiding getting into this Vixen thing. The problem with procrastination is that you avoid things so much that you fail to even become aware of why the avoidance is there in the first place.
But then clarity comes along with that fucking bat and, sooner or later, you clue the hell in. Like I did about 30 minutes ago. For some reason, today I feel like I’m Frodo walking across that marshland with all the corpses under the surface of the pondwater. I feel like I’m about to go under, like there’s some kinda tether wrapped around my heart and strung to the reeds below the surface, tugging me down and trying to seduce me into the dark.
It sounds really intense, but it’s not as bad as it sounds. Sure, it feels like that, but it’s a really surreal feeling, like there’s a bubble around me, like there’s all these dead little faces floating around me of people who think they’re alive, but really just aren’t. That I’m sitting around in utter silence on a freezing day in February might be adding to those Dali-esque proportions, so maybe I’ll just browse my iTunes here and stoke up a change of pace. When in doubt, go with the Butthole Surfers, that’s my policy.
This week, the week that follows Valentine’s Day, is the least favourite of my year. In a span of six days falls the anniversary of when the docs found a grapefruit-sized tumour in my mother’s belly and her birthday. Yes, that’s been on my mind. She has been on my mind an awful lot, particularly in relation to this topic. I, more than anything else in her life, am my mother’s legacy, and that’s not arrogance, that’s the admiration of a daughter who had a mother deserving of it. I am my mother’s daughter – in most ways.
If you met me in real life, you’d see a lot of similarities to the person on these pages. I’m boisterous, brazen, demure, open, scathing — whatever you want to call me, I’m an awful lot of those things. But my mother blazed that trail, baby. She was a model in her youth, she was hot when she died, didn’t look over 50. She had red hair, green eyes, and she was a risk-taker and a daredevil. She sold real estate, raced yachts, and wasn’t afraid of a fucking thing (most of the time).
She was never open about sex. I doubt she ever became a vixen. I bet she never trusted a man enough. I don’t think she ever got past the shame of what sex symbolized in her demented little worldview on the subject. My father and I were recently talking, musing about whether she had been sexually assaulted at age 12. My father grew up in her neighbourhood, they were friends all their lives, and he remembered when she changed, as if she just broke. He said something was never the same after she was 12, that day they came home to find her scantily clad, rocking barefoot under the farm’s kitchen table, shaking and sobbing.
This Vixen thing… it’s a personal mission for me, really. I’ve been the legacy of dysfunctional views on sex. I’ve seen what a loveless marriage does not only to the participants but the children involved. I’ve seen what happens to men (including my father) who get neglected and taken for granted, what happens to women forgotten by their lovers, and it all breaks my heart. It’s a really sad thing to behold, the loss of someone’s sexual side.
When I was young, I fell for that fascist Ayn Rand, and one quote stands out after all these years, that “avoiding death does not equal living life.” We’ve somehow fallen into this trap of “surviving” life. Yeah, you go right ahead. Survive. I’m gonna live, thanks.
And that’s the problem, most of us are content to merely survive our jobs, survive our relationships, whatever it takes to make it to the other side with the least resistance.
Being a vixen, or in the case of the men out there, an attentive, daring, open lover who’s receptive to his lover’s needs, takes guts. It doesn’t happen from just thinking it’d be nice to go there. It’s about actively pushing your fears and apprehensions. It’s about saying you’re not scared about being judged. But mostly, it’s about trusting this lover of yours you claim you trust. It’s about putting your money where your mouth is, baby.
It’s too late for my mother, and I caught the bus last decade, man, so I’m good, but there are a lot of folks out there who must learn how much more fun life is when they learn that being vulnerable doesn’t necessarily mean becoming hurt*, it means sucking the marrow out of life and taking the chances you’ve been resisting.
Mostly, though, it’s about really having great new experiences. So, you know, like they says, you better get busy livin’ or get busy dyin’, but make your fucking choices and stop just letting life happen to you. Being a dead fish is simply the personification of all those other little fears you have inside. Confront them.
Me, being a vixen underlies EVERYTHING I do in my life. I take chances, I go with the moment, and I may not have the fancy car and the retirement package some of my conservative friends have, but I’ve got experiences. Very cool experiences. So far, dying tomorrow, I’d have few, if any regrets, and knowing that is the greatest thing I can say about who I am.
*And even if you get hurt occasionally by becoming vulnerable, I’ve discovered firsthand that the richness of everyday experiences far outweighs those occasional bumps and bruises along the way. Like mountain biking or something, sometimes you fall, sure, but at least you’re out there having the experience most of the time… and hurts always heal. I take my lumps and go again.

8 thoughts on “Unleashing Your Vixen: Some Serious Thoughts

  1. April

    What a lovely photo!

    The things you’ve mentioned in this post are things that I’m realizing again in my life. Things that I’ve not been doing for some time….living life, that is. I’ve let myself be drawn into a marriage of the type I promised myself i never would. But…I’m moving out & on and learning to follow that path to freedom, to my inner vixen. I’m doing things I never would have before…and I’m loving it.

    Thanks for this post…it provokes quite the thought.

  2. sartre

    You make a good point. Survival is only half the story, living is an art and a mystery far beyond simple existence. Live, love, and learn, despite the obstacles from within and without.

    More quotes from Ayn Rand! Mutter, grumble, etc…

  3. scribe called steff

    April — I think we all have those ruts, but some of us just never fully come alive, so it’s sort of important for those who are living life sorta undead to come to terms with exactly what they’re doing to themselves, and me, I was just in a place where I sort of needed to touch on that today.

    Personally, I’ve been in one of those ruts — surviving, getting by — and I’m fucking tired of it. This is my weekend where it all kind of changes. This is one of those posts that I’m using to remind myself of who I am, and who’s kind of slipped away from me since about mid-November. Honestly, though, it happens in small degrees each winter for me. Heh. I’m cyclical.

    Sartre — LOL! Rand hater! Heh. I’m long past my naivete about Ayn Rand, and there are qualities of her teachings I agree with and live by, but like most philosophy, I know it exists in a very surreal world where the only shades are black and white — very idealized, and Rand is guiltier of that than most.

    Still, there are aspects of her stuff that has merit, and there ARE quotes worth quoting.

    Although, I think you’re slagging me for again quoting Rand since I seem to recall you lambasting me for citing her once before — and I bet you dollars to donuts this is the same fucking quote I said then. Heh. Quoting Rand is NOT something I do in abundance, and in fact, the only quote I ever cite is this one.

    Because it’s worth mentioning. 🙂

    But I like your comment about the obstacles. Nicely put.

  4. scribe called steff

    I’m about five minutes away from buying that late 80s/early 90s pop-psychology classic, “Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway.” It’s such a great bit of advice. Feel the fear, then do it anyway.

    The thing that people don’t get about fear is that it’s not supposed to stop you from doing things, it’s supposed to make you slow down, do it right, and appreciate it more when it all comes out proper.

    Fear rocks. Most of the time. I still wimp out and let it kick my ass sometimes, though.

  5. Goose and Gander

    Beautiful post. Fear. What it does, huh? We are so lucky in this time and place, that we have the option of being vixens, of changing our lives. So many don’t. Use your gifts to better the world, Steff, to make it so that other people, other girls, women and men can live fully too.
    I hear you about parent’s dying. My dad died when I was young and its always with me.

  6. Don

    Your words about your mother and father are so poignant; he didn’t know what happened when she was 12? Not the definition of marriage that I prefer. She wasn’t afraid of anything; except she kept so much of herself hidden even after you had matured. How incredibly sad.

    Best of luck in your new endevor.

  7. A Scribe Called Steff

    Posted September 9, 2007 at 12:33 am | Permalink | Edit
    Hey, Steff, what you are saying here really hit home. I was abused as a child and only now–years later–am I beginning to find the courage to go out there and explore sex with more confidence than I used to have. But it’s a constant fight against self-doubt. So your comments help me believe that I can give and receive pleasure. Thanks.

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