Monday March 8, 2021 is International Woman’s Day. The first “National” Woman’s day was on February 28, 1909 in New York then on March 19, 1911 was first marked by several countries. This continued with more countries joining in on the celebration for several more years. Finally in 1975 the United Nations began celebrating International Woman’s Day with it finally being proclaimed as being celebrated on March 8th in 1977. This day still has controversy of course as some countries do not see it as something real and I am sure there are individual people in the countries that do recognize that see it as something that shouldn’t be. There is of course information all over the internet but I used this link to find this information. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Women%27s_Day#:~:text=The%20United%20Nations%20began%20celebrating%20International%20Women’s%20Day%20in%20the,women’s%20rights%20and%20world%20peace.
I am not sure about other women but I have had many women in my life that have inspired me and have helped me become the woman I am today. It is honestly hard for me to choose just one woman to write about so I won’t because well I am one who thinks that a few need to be talked about. If you are a woman in my life who does not get mentioned in this please do not worry I can promise you picking the three that I did was not an easy thing to do but they were picked because of the roles they played in helping me become who I am. I have much respect for all the women in my life.
The first woman in my life who is an inspiration to me may seem odd to many but she is my oldest daughter Paige. She is a young lady who decided early in her life she was going to be more than the life she was given. As a mom I raised her and her brother on my own. She grew up for most of her life living in low-income but she did not let that define her negatively. From a young age it seemed she on a mission to get the best grades she could and only A’s would do. She has a heart of gold that it seemed she was born with. At the age of sixteen she got the opportunity to go to Europe for three weeks with a group of youth from across the United States. Paige set out to get in a top college and she had her choice of several colleges as she received letters of acceptance from many. Paige chose to go to Rensselaer Polytechnic University in Troy, NY. She was so much braver than I was at her age to go across the country to go to a college where she knew no one really. After graduating during a pandemic she went on to get a job in her field of study in another state. For me she is inspiration to continue striving for my dreams to not stop going for what I want in my life. She is my beautiful girl who is so much stronger and outgoing than I could have ever imagined any one to be.
Another woman who was an inspiration to me was my grandmother. I did not meet her for what I can remember until I was thirteen years old. But I can tell you she was a wonderful, sweet, funny and independent. She had been widowed for many years and honestly I have no idea for how long. I had only ever seen her widowed. She had been one to work her butt off for all she had and wanted. She was not one to take hand outs and worked a job most people would not be able to handle at her age. She was diagnosed with an ulcer that turned out to be stomach cancer and continued to work even after losing most of her stomach in surgery due to the cancer. From her I learned independence, I learned to fight any battle thrown at me and to love fearlessly. She passed away leaving behind a family that misses her every day. She did not get to see many of her grandkids and now great grandkids but her legacy lives on in them. She did not just give up and give in to the cancer that ravaged her body. She fought it with every thing in her and when we lost her we mourned knowing that others would not get the chance to know her or to love her.
The final woman who has managed to inspire me and help guide me to where I am is a professor I had in college. I did not go to college until I was 25 and a single mom of two young kids. Cindy Matthews believed in all of her students and had a passion for what she did like none I have seen since. While she expected a lot of her students she also gave them a lot. You knew walking into and out of her classes that you were get a lot of valuable information and knowledge as long as you were open and listening. During my time in college she was diagnosed with breast cancer which she fought valiantly and beat for a time. The cancer did come back in other places and she sadly eventually lost her battle. But during her time as a professor she taught many students and I know we were all happy to have her in our classes. I know many of us were effected by her passing. With every student that came in her classroom she wanted them to succeed not only in their studies but in their lives. From her I learned a whole new passion for the career I was going after. I learned that to be someone who made a difference in others I had to make a difference to myself first. While I was lucky enough to finish my college career while she was still alive and a professor I still mourned her passing because I knew that others would never get the chance to learn all she had to give to them.
Now with International Woman’s day quickly approaching and one that I am sure many do not even realize is there let us all tell those women who have or who continue to inspire us thank you. Let them know the inspiration they are to you and to others. Do not let them pass away without knowing what they mean to you because that feeling of regret lives inside of me for not letting my grandmother or my professor know how important they were to me. Also let us recognize those amazing women especially now so that they continue to be the inspiration that they are. Thank you to every amazing woman in my life I hope you know how important and inspiring you are to those around you.