"Kafi can do everything." That’s what my friend says.
And, yes, that’s right. I can do everything.
You’ve probably just winced, right? If a friend says this about one, it’s barely ok. But to make such a statement about yourself? Really? Is there something more immodest than this? Outrageous! What a stuck-up cow.
I can even read somebody’s mind! Right? There you go. That’s what I said; I can do everything.
But let’s have a look at the facts now. I can’t really do everything. But really a lot. I’m quite good with my hands. I can restore furniture and hang wallpaper. I have two kinds of grinding machines, one for surfaces and one for corners. I can change car tires, though I did this for the last time 18 years ago, but you don’t forget that so fast.
I can write and also accompany people through difficult times. Take pictures. Cupping therapy. Make websites and concepts. Blog! Buy shares. Sell cars. Book a round-the-world trip on the Internet. Do the accounting. Write and give speeches. Park a car damn well. Rhyme. And cut videos! Sew. Knit even better! I can cut hair and dye eyelashes. I am the nightmare of every hairdresser because I think I can do it myself.
And this is exactly what it is about: About my strong feeling to be able to do something!
Because, as long as I have not proved myself the opposite, I can do everything! It is a basic attitude that enables and encourages me to try out things.
For a while, I had completely forgotten this talent. I was married and my husband at the time was highly talented. At everything. As a consequence, I stopped doing anything. I didn’t use a drilling machine, didn’t replace a light switch, didn’t put together a shelf and I didn’t carry any heavy things. Simply because there was someone who could do all this.
When I was on my own later on, I had no more anybody at home who managed things for me. Of course, I could have looked out on Facebook for a capable man who would help me. I see this quite often. There, women are looking for men who know about accounting. Or Excel. Or one who could put together a wardrobe for them or install a lamp. I didn’t want to be like this. Never.
That’s why I started again to do things myself. To open the dusty toolbox more often and to learn how to fix something. There are no cooler times for independent people than these days. You can find instructions to any topic anywhere. I have learned most things on YouTube. There, everything is explained step by step, one can watch and learn.
If you believe in yourself and dare. And if you want it. And exactly that’s the crux of the matter!
I am often confronted with women who do not believe themselves capable of a lot. Who don’t want to have anything to do with money (‘my husband takes care of this’) or who complain that the wardrobe door is still crooked because their husbands don’t fix it. When I then ask ‘why don’t you just do it yourself?’ I am often looked at with wide, unbelieving eyes.
We women insist on equal rights and squall when we face sexism. We don’t wanna hear that boys are better at maths than girls. But when it comes to do something that one’s boyfriend can allegedly do better, then, we like to put up our feet and let a man make it. Because he is stronger. Because he can do it better. I see. Nice.
I haven’t encountered much in my life a man could do better than me. On the contrary. I may be inferior physically and not be as strong as a man, but I always find a way, by cleverness! The floor of my flat shows many scratches of the heavy furniture I have moved through the rooms on a sheet. Of course I could have asked a man. But sometimes I simply didn’t want to wait until help arrives.
It’s not about not accepting help. That would be stupid. But it’s a wicked feeling to know that you could do it yourself. It’s about daring and trying out things. It’s about believing in yourself and not pretending to be more stupid than you actually are. Because this makes you strong and builds your self-confidence.
And if we go through live with a strong self-confidence, we will less frequently be victims of sexism. Simply because such an inner attitude signals very clearly that one cannot play silly games with us.
Maybe, my attitude "I can do everything" appears arrogant to you. But I am convinced that you can do everything, too, if you only want it.
PS: Almost forgot. There is something that I provably can't do at all and that I will NEVER try again: DIY eyelash perm. Unless an Eyelash-Afro gets modern sometime...