International Women’s Day

Today is International Women’s Day.  This day has been celebrated annually across the world since 1911.  There are many ways to celebrate the day.  Through activities and campaigns, with the overall focus being on women’s advancement and inspiration as well as celebration, the day is one to note. Many countries across the world have various themes for the day.  Each theme, each year, resonates with remembrance and honor of women achievement from the past and anticipation for women’s positive change in the future.

 

In celebration of International Women’s Day I thought I would share a list of 10 things I think both women now and in the future should know and remember on a daily basis.

 

This piece is dedicated to the most important women in my life.  My mother, Mary, who has taught me so much about being a woman and to my best friends and sisters, Rachel and Emily.

 

10 Thoughts on Being a Woman

1. You are a woman!!  Your body may not always just be yours, sharing life with a child is something only we can do.  Celebrate this wonder.  Be kind to your body.  Take the time to appreciate your curves, your wrinkles, and your abilities.  Stretch every day!!  Push yourself physically so that in 50 years you can still enjoy grandkids, the outdoors, and daily activities like a walk.

 

2.  You will fail and make mistakes, but what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger!  Sometimes obstacles in life are true blessings in disguise.  Keep perspective and know that night is darkest before dawn, there is hope beyond the struggle.  The mistakes you make will build a foundation for future success.

 

3. There can never be too much grace in life.  Grace is pardoning what isn’t deserved.  Give grace; over and abundantly forgive those around you and forgive yourself.  Accept grace; let others free you from guilt and shame and free yourself from your own disappointments.

 

4. You are the only you!! Enjoy who you are and how you were created.  Don’t be such a harsh judge of yourself and celebrate all that you are, all that you have become, and the bright future ahead of you.

 

5. Work hard.  Nothing can replace perseverance, commitment, and passion.  Do the things you don’t want to do now, so later you can have the things you do want.  Lay a foundation now that can launch you into the best possible future.  Be balanced, but be disciplined.

 

6. Moderation.  I don’t live my life by a scale, a diet, a fashion, a quota, a social standard.  Instead I live each day thankful I am alive, embracing the daily opportunities to enjoy food, nature, relationships, and LIFE.  Nothing is good in excess.  It is important to not deprive your life of joys, but over indulgence leads to the lack of appreciation.  Eat a slice of cheesecake, enjoy a glass of wine, go for a walk, watch a sunset, and thank the Lord for a new day, each day.

 

7. You are loved.  In this world, many things, people, and circumstances can lead you to believe you are unworthy of love.  This is a lie and I encourage every woman to fight for the truth that you are worthy of love and indeed are loved by the One who made you.

 

8. Call your mother.  She will never tire of hearing about your life.  She has been with you from the beginning and she will stay until she can’t any longer.  There is nothing quite like a mother’s love.

 

9. Share who you are with others.  Looking into the eyes of a friend to see yourself is moving, exposing, and healing.  Be open and let people in.  We were never created to be alone, but rather live in community with one another.  You have talents and abilities that others appreciate and you can add so much to the lives of those around you.  Be brave and show who you are.

 

10. Finally, said best by St. Francis, give, love, and believe.  Most things in this world have a price, but faith and hope are invaluable.

 

Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace;
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is error, truth;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
And where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.