Last week the world celebrated International Women’s Day. Throughout the day, I saw so many memes and inspirational posts supporting women and our awesomeness. And while I know I’ve always been surrounded by incredible women, it really got me thinking about just how incredible they truly are. I’m sure it’s safe to say that the majority of all women are pretty damn special for one reason or another, but lately I’ve just felt that all the ones around me aren’t just special, they’re extraordinary.
For starters, one of my girlfriends, that I have been so incredibly lucky to be included in her circle of friends over the past two decades, just beat cancer. BEAT CANCER. Not only did she beat it, but she kicked its ass. And while she was busy kicking its ass she also worked a full-time job. Was a mother of two. A wife. And the most amazing part about her life’s hiccup is that I never once heard her complain. Granted, I’m sure she had her moments but her mantra even during her darkest moments was that of “I got this.” And she did. And she continues to kick ass to this day. Wow. I don’t think there could be a better role model for any of us.
Another dear friend of mine is in the beginning stages of going through a divorce. She’s scared, confused, hurt and lost. Yet this woman continues to push forward. She continues to put her family’s needs ahead of her own. Instead of lying down and wallowing in the unknown shit storm that is looming just above her head, she goes through her days with her head held high and gets shit done.
And no one can even whisper the words “strong woman” without thinking of my own stepmother. That woman endured every parent’s worst nightmare. But she continues to make a choice each and every day to live. How easy would it be for her, or anyone that went through what she did, to merely give up. Because undoubtedly by losing a child, she ultimately lost a piece of herself. But not only did she not give up, she finds happiness in her days. There is a special kind of power in her strength, and I will forever be in awe of her.
Then there’s my grandma, one of my favorite women in my life. At Christmastime she took a turn for the worse, and no one expected her to make the new year. Hospice was called in and our mission, we were told, was to merely make her comfortable. Now fast forward two months later, and she’s being kicked out of hospice. Is that even a thing?! After literally being on her deathbed, my soon-to-be 88-year-old granny decided “hell no I ain’t going anywhere” and is back to rocking away her days watching Fox news. I think my grandpa must have put in a request for a bit more alone time with his buddies before he gets reunited. What other explanation could there be?
I could ramble on with super hero stories about all the women that I’m blessed to have in my life. But even if you didn’t beat cancer or get kicked out of hospice, the strength that comes with being a woman is unfathomable. And I think we often forget that or even take it for granted. But this kind of strength isn’t something that’s learned over night. Or even taught. It’s something that’s earned. And we have the scars, both internally and externally to prove it. Because giving up is not in our vocabulary. There will always be days where we want nothing more than to tell the world to “F off” and we momentarily give in to the pain, the desperation, the loneliness. But it’s fleeting, and we ultimately get back up and surge ahead.
We are women. We are warriors. We are survivors. And we get shit done. I salute you all.