"You know I have never met a woman who is not strong. They don't exist." Diane Von Furstenburg
Every year on March 8th marks a globally celebrated day for women. To embrace their strength, love, child-bearing, love, nurture, grace, resilience, social impact, and leadership. One day to express gratitude for the contribution of women into the world and all the lives that have been positively affected by it. It is similar to Mother's Day but you don't necessarily have to be a mother. Some use this day to raise awareness on inequalities, imposed gender roles, and biases in society, seemingly significant things that have yet to change. However, we have gained a lot of notoriety and legal rights throughout the years. Thus in modern times, it's because we grab the opportunities to become business owners, executives, partners at firms, entrepreneurs, and high profile doctors and judges. We are no longer waiting on "the law" to give us the opportunity to lay out the trajectory of our lives and continuously generalize the female population. For many years we have allowed society to dim our lights, when in fact, we are natural-born changemakers and we give life to this world in so many ways.
QUICK HISTORY OF WOMEN'S RIGHTS
1872: Victoria Claflin Woodhull becomes the first female presidential candidate in the United States, nominated by the National Radical Reformers.
1900: All states in the US, grant married women to own property and keep their own wages.
1920: The Nineteenth Amendment to the Constitution is ratified, ensuring the right of women to vote.
1923 – The first version of an Equal Rights Amendment is introduced. It says, "Men and women shall have equal rights throughout the United States and every place subject to its jurisdiction."
1937: The Matrimonial Causes Act 1937 allowed going forward either party to a marriage the ability to file for a divorce.
1978 – The Pregnancy Discrimination Act bans employment discrimination against pregnant women.
1994 – The Violence Against Women Act funds services for victims of rape and domestic violence and allows women to seek civil rights remedies for gender-related crimes.
2017 – Congress has a record number of women, with 104 female House members and 21 female Senators, including the chamber's first Latina, Nevada Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto.
The most important message of this day for me is acceptance, courage, and empowerment. Acceptance that we own our life, Courage to live our truth, and Empowerment to chase our wildest dreams, even if it disrupts a little structure in society. As women, we tend to downplay our accomplishments, talents, and place in this world to fit into societal norms of what we are "expected" to be. We can wear ourselves out being a second-best version of ourselves to please the world around us. Too often we skip out on opportunities, seek validation, reduce our self-esteem to zilch, and resent the routes we have ultimately chosen for the betterment of others. It's time that more women to get on board with the current empowerment movement. For me, the empowerment movement is less about monumental success, money, and credentials and more about stepping out on faith as we are, being ok with the things we want and the life we desire to live; while having no fear to go confidently towards that ideal.
"On this day, it is important to remember that no matter what rules, cultural norms or pressures are bestowed upon us... our lives are OURS. It is ours to live, to endure, to change at our own will. We can do whatever we please with this one, wild, uncertain, inexplicable life. "
Acceptance of everything that we are and everything we are not is needed to grow stronger. We can literally have it all if we desire it. The only limits we have are set by us, we are limitless beings, and regrets will only damage us. We must be proud to be a woman, in the land of opportunity and limitless possibilities that is not gender-specific. It's very important to accept who we are, where we are, and everything we have been through without the ifs, buts, could've, would've, and should-haves attached to it. "BE INTENTIONAL WITH YOUR LIFE AND SOAR, IF YOU WANT TO." You are love, You are light, You are peace, You are a woman....and that alone is enough.