Today is International Women’s Day, and as soon as I woke up I began thinking about all the women who have shaped me into who I am, and all the women that have surrounded me in this life. I named just a few names below, along with what I admire most or think first about them.
As I go through and reread this list, some things become immediately apparent: first, this is by no means comprehensive. Naming every woman who inspires me would take all of Women’s Day (and probably run into tomorrow, or, as we women call it, day 1 of Men’s Year).
And the other revealing thing is that these traits are the ones I most long for in myself. It encourages me to see other women living out their characters in a way that is laid out for me to imitate.
I love you all. Thank you for the part you played in my journey, and I’m sure, countless others’. Happy women’s day.
My mother – for her wisdom, her humor, her drive to always learn, her perspective, and her grounded joy.
My grandmothers – for their perseverance in living a life centered around what truly matters, even through pain and sacrifice.
Maddie, Kate and Hannah VP – for bravery in their journeys and their self-giving love.
Zann, Lauren S, Elia, Allison S – for their infectious compassion in the face of an often dark and ugly world.
Kimi, Molly, Laura F, Emily P – for their drive to write clear and well and on purpose.
Rachel S, Mandie, Tschirgs, Anne Pel – for their second-nature, easy way of loving others and delighting in them.
Julia R, Erin C, Carissa – for their inner gentleness, which can soften the hardest surroundings.
Deb, Dioni, Caroline – for their unwavering pursuit to push themselves to grow, constantly, in spite of obstacles.
Liz – for being unabashedly, beautifully herself, and treating her story as sacred.
Deirdre, Katherine, Claudia – for using their skills to lead in changing the world, and doing so with humility and grace.
Alex, Anna, Melma – for laughing at every dumb rule given to them, and rewriting the entire book.