Ladies. Women. Girls. No matter which way you say it, they all rock. This year, more than ever, it is incredibly important to recognize the talent, skill, strength and determination of women all around the world.
The year is 2018. People have already walked on the moon and ventured into the deep corners of space. We’ve elected a black President of the United States. Same-sex marriage has been recognized by countless countries around the world. We’ve even been able to invent cars that drive themselves and find treatment for life-threatening diseases. But, still, we are facing gender equality issues.
Whether it is sexual harassment in the workplace, the gender pay gap or overcoming demeaning and insulting stereotypes, gender inequality persists. And given the recent #metoo and #timesup movements it clear that the struggles women are facing are not behind us yet. So, in a world where there is so much negativity and adversity facing women, today I am offering this little love note.
To all the women out there who are killing it everyday. To the stay-at-home-moms, working moms and single moms who constantly put their family’s needs before their own. To the female executives who are kicking ass and taking names. To the teachers, doctors, nurses, school crossing guards and administrators who dedicate their days to making others’ lives better. To the women who pull themselves together each day even though they’d rather stay in bed because they have bills to pay. To all the ladies who are out there supporting one another instead of tearing each other down. To the glass-ceiling crushers, barrier breakers and never-say-can’t sayers: You rock my world.
To the women who are struggling to be treated equally in the workplace, at home or in the community. To the women who are silently fighting to be accepted, valued and recognized for their hard work. To the women who know their power and potential, but haven’t been given the chance to show it: I hope that one day respect and opportunity will be given to us all based on merit alone with no consideration for gender.
To the women in my life: my family, friends, co-workers and role models; the ones who show that being compassionate and kind does not make you weak; the ones who don’t let others tell them their value; those who encourage each other to go after their dreams: Thank you for standing by me through the thick and thin. Thank you for showing me that there is no limit to what we can do. Thank you for supporting me, believing in me, and giving me something to strive towards. Thank you for showing me that strength can come in places you least expect it. Thank you for demonstrating everyday that beauty can be found anywhere given the right perspective. And, thank you for being the wonderful people you are, without whom I wouldn’t be the person I am today.
Growing up, I never felt that my options were limited because I was a girl. I never believed that certain careers or opportunities were closed to me because I had people in my life who taught me that your conviction, work ethic, and determination were more important. Unfortunately, not all women were told the same. Many little girls grew up believing themselves to be weak, incapable of greatness or unworthy. My hope is that the next generation of women never have to wonder if the reason they didn’t get a job, or were passed up for a spot of the school track team was because of their gender. We’ve got a long way to go, but as long as there are women paving the way and breaking down obstacles for the rest, the world has no choice but to take notice.