Soul Searching on My Participation in "The Vagina Monologues," by Eve Ensler, Paris Community Theatre, April 12-14, 2013

Heaven help me,  I’m a lawyer. 

Heaven knows, we lawyers need all the help we can get.  We’re so twisted.  I think it is because we see the worst, we know the worst.  Through our very profession, we’ve  been able to  take a bite of that fruit of the tree of good and evil, the tree of knowledge.  

As a lawyer,  you know that bad things happen to good people.  You know that good people make bad decisions.  Good people get in messes. Bad people have good things happen to them. 

Bad people are often good people.  Good people are often bad people. 

You know that women, in particular, suffer devastating things just because of their womanhood.  Yet, they are completely able to love and forgive and give life.

You know that life is just messy and dirty and you can’t do anything about it. 

This knowledge doesn’t shut me down for the most part, but I can’t ignore it.  I must think about it. I love thinking through one on one conversations, in the sanctity of my office or on my back porch.  I love thinking through reading books and talking about them.   I love thinking through theater. 

So I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately about life experiences, about learning through other people and venues, about how knowledge is power.   About how healing often comes by sharing.  In particular, I’ve been thinking about how women do this. 

Mainly I’ve been thinking about this because of the theater event that I am currently deeply involved in: “The Vagina Monologues.”  

You may be surprised to know that even in this conservative place, most people I talk to, including many men, have already seen it and can’t wait to come see it on the PCT stage.  If you are one of those people, be my guest to read further, but go ahead and reserve your tickets now, because based upon response already, we are expecting this event to sell out: 

BUT, -- if this anatomical word “vagina” scares your or bothers you, I hope you’ll stay with me.  I want to talk with you, I want to think this through with you.  Let’s get comfortable together, as if you are in my office – my library sanctuary -- or on my back porch.   I promise you, what is said here, stays here.

I know that many people trust me; I hope I have given you good reason to trust me.  I want you to know why I am embracing this, why  I am proudly staking my reputation on this new project, why I hope you will consider coming to it. 

1. There is a BIG PICTURE reason I am involved in PCT’s production of The Vagina Monologues.  

God has put me on this earth for many reasons.  I am one of those people who is lucky enough to know what some of my reasons are.  I know  that one of the reasons I am here is because of my heart for women.  It horrifies me how many BAD things happen to women just because they are women.  Things that shouldn’t happen to women just because they are women.    I am here to help when bad things happen to women.  I am here to support the empowerment of women.  I am here to stand up for women.

God promises us good, but bad things happen to people, He’s taught me that for certain.  Whether they are Christians or not.  Whether they asked for it or not.  Whether they are women or men.

This truth is hard to come to grips with and is frankly why so many lawyers are addicts.  It’s a painful lesson to learn, and if you haven’t learned it yet, God Bless You and I hope you never do.  But I have.  

And I know that one of the reasons that I am here is because of my heart’s desire to help women and to inspire others to help them.

2.  But what does The Vagina Monologues have to do with helping women?  Well – first, it is Real.  

If you just read the title, and you aren’t some doctor or lawyer or nurse or social worker who is used to words of anatomy, the title may scare you, because the title makes you think that this is just some big power play,  some attention getting, crazy woman, pornographic, pointless play.  First, understand that it is not an X Rated play!  But it is R rated, or for the mature audience, which, frankly, is what is on nighttime TV about 99% of the time now. The title is there for the shock factor, but it also perfectly describes what the play is about.   

 It is simply women talking about the experience of being a woman,  of so many woman experiences, of adult woman experiences.  It is the ultimate girl talk, like the night that a few of you girls stayed late at Bunko or Book Club or the library in college, and you came home and your boyfriend/ or husband asked what you talked about, and it was so magical that all you  could say was nothing but you meant everything.  That is what The Vagina Monologues is to me.  Yes, it is edgy, but it is real.  Give me the choice over a made up “my life is perfect” book or theater and “real” book or theater and I will choose real every time.  I want to explore the reality of life, I must explore it!  I have to understand – has this happened to anyone else?  What did you do with it when it did?  Ducking my head won’t keep it from happening to me or to my daughter.  But knowledge might help me when it does.

3.  The Vagina Monologues gives knowledge, and through knowledge, it gives power.  

Ok, so it is real.  How does a dose of reality give power?  It does it by giving knowledge.  If you do come see the play, you will know so much more.  You will know what lawyers know.  You will know what doctors and nurses know, what social workers and people in the court system know.  You will know what God knows.   It does this by telling you stories as told by women to the writer, Eve Ensler.  Stories that make you uncomfortable, make you laugh, make you cry, make you realize that we have failed to remember what it means to be Woman.  

And you will understand that this thing that I believe that God gave women, this part of me, this part of every woman and girl, is something to be respected, and admired, and revered.  It is not something to be violated ever.  Ever.  EVER. 

And with this knowledge you know  that you are right to stand up for women and that you have the ability to stand up for women.  In fact, by your very participation in PCT’s presentation of The Vagina Monologues, you are doing this.  Why? 

 Because this 15th anniversary of The Vagina Monologues  is all about taking a stand against violence against women, by giving all of our net proceeds to a local organization that helps women who are victims of violence.  We have chosen SafeT, the group here that helps women who are victims of violence.  

 By doing this, we are taking a part in the
  Global One Billion Rising movement, and I’m so proud of Paris Community Theatre for participating, and for bringing it to Paris, Texas so that we can all have the choice to participate. 

VDay Mexico!
VDay Indonesia!

VDay Beirut!
VDay Helena Montana!

VDay Congo!

 So as for me --  if I can stop one person from hurting another woman because she is a woman, or if I can help one woman understand that she has self worth, that she can go somewhere to be safe, that she can go somewhere to talk and to heal,  then I know  I am acting out my purpose here on earth.

And that is why I am so thankful to get to be living this play at this particular time, because  we are all very excited about raising money and awareness for SafeT.  And because it is real, and powerful – and loads of fun.  

I hope you’ll join us. Reserve your tickets today!

And if you want to help, please let me know.  There is much to be done for this worthy cause, including helping with the Men's Event -- the "Walk in Our Shoes" One Hundred Yard Dash!

The Vagina Monologues, by Eve Ensler is coming to Paris Texas April 12-14, 2013 as a “Off Plaza” production, meaning it is not a part of the season and you must purchase tickets to come see it.  It is being played on the PCT stage, and it is general admission, for only $10.00 a ticket, all shows are evening shows.   All proceeds after costs are going to SafeT, an organization that helps women who have been  victims of violence.     

We are proud to be an official Vspot in the One Billion Rising global movement  of persons rising against violence against women and girls.    Also as a part of our fundraising efforts for SafeT, PCT will be hosting a “Walk In Our Shoes” event, where men will be challenged to complete a 100 yard dash in high heels. So come see the play, or participate in the walk, or give money.  Please help us and take a stand against violence against women and girls.

Here is some music to inspire you: Break the Chain Dance 


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