What I’ve Learnt From Being Assaulted By A Stranger

This afternoon I was physically assaulted by a stranger, while I was wiping a table clean and removing a pepper grinder.

It was completely out of the blue, a random passerby just making the decision to smack a woman’s bottom as hard as he could before running off.

I’d clocked him out of the corner of my eye only a few minutes beforehand, politely smiling and continuing with what I was doing; the end-of-day focus of someone that just really wants to go home after a day at work! Later on I wondered if my intuition had been trying to warn me, but after mulling that idea over I realised that it’s actually just an instinct to assess all of the strangers in your vicinity. I’m sure to a degree it’s a Human thing, our beautiful and powerful computer-brains wired for survival and all, but I know that being a woman I am especially aware of the unfamiliar men around me at any given time and that women all around the world feel exactly the same way.

I had barely registered what had happened, if it wasn’t for the loud smack, being pushed into the table I’d been cleaning and my tingling left butt-cheek, I don’t think I would’ve believed what had just happened. I was totally shocked and as I swung around to watch him run away another man standing only a few metres from me, who had seen the whole thing, body-slammed the culprit as he ran past and shouted at him. The guy got away and kept running up the street while the second man turned his attention to asking if I was okay. My mouth was still hanging wide open and I’d started shaking.

What the actual fuck.

Walking back into the cafe I was acutely aware that I was the only female among a crew of male team members. I could feel a part of me had already started to objectify all men as being capable of random acts of violence against women, as if it was easier for my mind to process that it was just a general “male” thing and that I wasn’t special in any way for having brought on this experience. I could feel that I wasn’t breathing properly, I was holding it in so I didn’t completely lose it. My mind was racing trying to catch up, process, understand what had just happened and why.

I guess this is the benefit of all the meditation and embodiment work I’ve been doing? I don’t believe that in the past I would have had the awareness to notice these sensations. I would have been utterly consumed by them and allowed whatever narrative my mind came up with to dictate “The Truth” of my experience, instead of letting my body feel it and tell me the Truth in the moment.

I took myself to a quiet space surrounded by plants, I looked up at the beautiful blue sky (a recent discovery I’ve made about myself is that looking up= calm Klyne) and fully allowed myself to breathe. I could feel that as I unlocked my breath and allowed it to flow instead of stopping it that I felt the grief and powerlessness and anger much more deeply. There was a direct correlation between how deeply I allowed my breath to go to how deeply my body felt. From doing so much work in reconnecting to my emotions and how they move through the body, I trusted that it would pass. That by feeling them fully and allowing them the space to just be, they would eventually move and change. These are direct experiences that we hold space for in Qoya, and to a degree I’d felt them both before in class but to have been able to take this out of the safe, Qoya space into an unexpected, real-life experience and to have felt its power. I feel completely humbled.

So I sobbed it out.

I breathed in the magnolias and raged at the Sky and a part of me tapped into the collective pain of so many women everywhere who feel unsafe.

Walking back into the cafe I could see with new eyes. I looked around at the concerned, protective and loving faces of the men I work with and a part of me felt safe again. I am surrounded every day by men that embody the very best qualities of the Divine Masculine, that care deeply and who do stand up for women whenever they see a situation that feels wrong. I also realised that a part of them needed for me to allow them to offer me their protection and love, so instead of shrugging off their concern and heated comments of retribution, I showed them my vulnerability and deep gratitude for their love.

Getting home, after lots of cuddles with my beautiful husband, I went into my feminine space and pulled out the tools that I’ve cultivated to shift my energy- I made an impromptu Qoya playlist to tap in and dance it out (think: a Shadow Dance to tap into the disempowerment I felt, “Just A Girl” by No Doubt to STOMP and rage, some Pharrell to shake it out and a song to help me feel my power come back and own the Divine Feminine that I embody), a dose of ‘Emergency’ Bush Flower Essence blend to help with the shock and fear, Rose Geranium essential oil everywhere (she’s my homegirl and the fastest way me to heal my Heart), burning white sage to clear and cleanse while invoking with the power of my words the release and cleansing of any energies and entities that do not belong to me, and of course, some serious prayers to my Badass Spirit Team for some grounding, extra lovin’ and a deeper understanding of the day’s events.

I called in my allies and I tapped into the wisdom of my body.

Now I’m going to eat some nourishing soup with my man, watch Wonder Woman and eat some chocolate almonds. I’m going to let go of what happened today and step into tomorrow with such crazy-gratitude for the path that I am on and all of the wonderful Humans that share their love with me.

I’ll pray that my Heart is able to forgive the man that tried to make me feel unsafe.

I’ll pray in deep, deep gratitude for the many, many men around the world that love and protect women fiercely.


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