Friday, March 8, 2013

International Women's Day

Sadly, I just learned of International Women's Day a few years ago. I thought it was something new but it has been celebrated since the early 1900's.  

International Women's Day is a day to be thankful for all the brave women who have come and gone before me. To be thankful that they had the courage to stand up for their own rights and mine. It's a day to be thankful for parents who encouraged me to dream. It's a day to appreciate the beauty and wonder of all we are as women. It's a day to be thankful that my daughter's world will look so much differently than my great-great grandmothers. 

It is a day to remember that while we here in America still have battles to fight and win over issues, women in other countries are still yearning for the right for education and health care. They want to be able to choose who they marry. They want to be able to have a childhood instead of being a child-bride. They want to be able to stand up to their husband who is HIV positive yet still refuses to use a condom with her so she becomes infected. Girls want a chance to go to school and learn to read and write. Girls don't want to be sold into sex trafficking just so their family can afford to eat. Women want to be able to speak their mind and not have acid poured on their face. Women want to be able to get help after they are raped and have their raper prosecuted. Women want to be able to have their female babies and not have to abort them because they are the wrong gender for their country. 

International Women's Day is day of beauty, hope, encouragement and a reminder that while we have come so far, we still have far to go. A day to be thankful and a day to remember those who yearn for something to be thankful for. It's a day to educate ourselves and learn how we can help the women around the world.

Women are amazing. Women can create miracles. Physically, women can grow another living being inside of their own body. We can nourish it and then birth a baby from our own body. We can give that baby nourishment from our own body as soon as it is born. We a life givers. How amazing is that!

As Mao Zedong said, "Women hold up half the sky."

As a mom, I look at the world today and think how happy I am that we live here in America and so many things are instantly better for her just by where she was born. My daughter can be a doctor, nurse, mother, stay at home mom, president, judge, fire fighter, in the military...the possibilities are endless! We need to teach our daughters of the way things were here and they way they are now, here and around the world. 

We need to teach our daughters that the world is bigger than themselves, bigger than here and now, bigger than their current situation. It is bigger than her school, friends, boyfriends, prom dresses, American Idol, and Coach purses. We as moms and women, need to teach our daughters of what our ancestors fought for and won! And we need to teach them of what other girls and women, just like us, are lacking and dying from. We as women need to stick together and quite the bitter back biting and help one another when we see another woman down. 

It starts with us, you and me. We have to power to teach our daughters and the girls and women in our life that we hold the power in us to make this world a more beautiful place. We hold the power to be anything we want to be. We hold the power to change the world! 

So for my daughter and all the women in my life, take a moment today to look deep into your heart and find your passion and purpose. Maybe you won't realize it all today but start the search. Start the search for what you were born to do. We were all created for a purpose. Never short change yourself or the world because you think you can't. The bigger the passion and dreams you have, the hard you will have to work, the more help you might need. Remember to look to those who came before you for inspiration. Again, remember that no dream is too big or too small. If that is your passion, then live it to the fullest! If you make a difference in one persons life for good, you have influenced the world for the better! You are a woman, you are beautiful, you are powerful, and you were meant to change the world!! 

Here are some encouraging words from a few amazing women who have made the world a better place. Enjoy! And Happy International Women's Day! Be thankful and be prayerful for the women around the world in need of love and support and basic human rights!

"For what is done or learned by one class of women becomes, by virtue of their common womanhood, the property of all women." - Elizabeth Blackwell, first female physician in the United States

"If the first woman God ever made was strong enough to turn the world upside down all alone, these together ought to be able to turn it back and get it right side up again." - Sojourner Truth, African-American abolitionist

"Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it.” 
"People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone." - Audrey Hepburn, actress and philanthropist

"I think the girl who is able to earn her own living and pay her own way should be as happy as anybody on earth. The sense of independence and security is very sweet." - Susan B. Anthony, American suffragette and advocate of women's rights

"The best protection any woman can courage." - Elizabeth Cady Stanton, American abolitionist

"I think self-awareness is probably the most important thing towards being a champion." - Billie Jean King, female tennis champion who battled for equal pay

"Don't let anyone rob you of your imagination, your creativity, or your curiosity. It's your place in the world; it's your life. Go on and do all you can with it, and make it the life you want to live."- Mae C. Jemison, first African-American woman astronaut

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