As a woman, a mother, a mother of a woman,…today I will embrace the celebration of National Women’s Day 2017. Today I will remember what it means to be a woman and all the wonderful things that go along with that. Things that only a woman can do, like give birth. Hey, men can’t…just saying.
But in celebrating I will also remember the things that women can’t do. There are still parts of the world where women can’t choose for themselves who they will marry, or even if they want to get married. There are still countries where women can’t drive, go to school, walk about free in public. There are still places where women are viewed as the property of the men and are treated and abused as such. And there are still governments that would rather see a woman die, shamed and vilified than give birth to her eight ( or more) child.
I grew up in the time Title IX came into effect. Prior to that, girls sports in schools weren’t funded.
My mother grew up in the time where if she didn’t want to have a baby she had 2 choices: don’t have sex, or procure an illegal abortion.
My grandmother grew up in a time where she was struck down and beaten in the streets by men when she protested for the right to vote for the leaders of HER country.
That’s just three generations of women who saw the need to effect change for the better. And did.
My daughter lives in a world where she knows no limits on what she can do with her life. She has the benefit of education, status, choice. What she still doesn’t have is equal pay for equal work. And if things keep going the way they are currently, she will lose even more of those hard-fought RIGHTS the women who came before her died for.
Today, in 2017, I proudly stand on the shoulders of the courageous, fearless, determined women who came before me. Who fought convention, misogyny, and hate. I won’t forget them or their struggles.
And I will continue to fight –EVERY DAY — to ensure that they didn’t die in vain.
But today…today I will celebrate my gender. Tomorrow..well, tomorrow is another day.