"Come on, girls," she shouts to the nearly all male baseball team from the sidelines, the annoyance clear in her voice. "Let's get it together." She offers a little chuckle, to lighten the insult, but beneath the laugh is the clear evidence of a type of thinking that was thought to have disappeared a century ago.
Earlier, another insult was hurled across the ball field, this time by one of the players at first base. As the ball came across the field, not close enough for him to make the catch, his response to the player at fault was, "Come on! You throw like a girl!"
I sat on the bleachers, hearing my femininity thrown around as an insult, as something inside my little heart broke.
Because since when is it okay to use who I am, a woman, designed in the image of my Creator, as an insult? Since when is it okay to admonish someone that they are less than they should be because they are doing something as a woman or girl would? Since when is it okay to use a male as a standard, and a woman as sub-par?
And most importantly, why are we still okay with this way of thinking? Why do we still allow those comments a place in our sports fields, and a place in our thoughts?
It has taken me years and years to just begin to hold my femininity in my hands and be okay with it. It has taken me a long time to see that as a woman, I hold beauty and emotions and a wonder that Christ has delighted in blessing me with. It's a challenge every single day to counter the lies that this culture tells that our beauty is found in an outward appearance or that as women, we need to throw femininity aside to be equal to men. As a woman, I am delightfully different than a man because we were designed that way. I am in no way superior. I am in no way inferior. I am equal, amidst our differences.
And so when I hear those insults echoing across a ball field, and echoing through this society, that kind of thinking breaks my heart.
Because we are beyond that. We are better than that. We have come so far in our understanding of who men and women are and who they were designed to be - and those insults? They should be a heartbreaking thing of the past. They should be no longer.