By Rachel Hanson
Being a woman is an interesting experience.
We are half of the global population, but we are “the other.”
We are paid less than our male counterparts, despite having equal education and experience. Yet, this reality of economic inequality does not stop us from forging extremely strong bonds with the men in our lives. We are friends, confidantes, lovers.
Globally, women miss weeks of school because of our periods because we lack the resources to manage our symptoms. We are “messy”, but somehow we’re the ones that clean up the mess. We clean up the mess when we’re tired, hungry, and sick.
We clean up the mess when our hearts are breaking, when we are crying, when we are happy.
We do so much of the work but get little of the credit. At least in ways that count. Or rather, in the ways that count in the eyes of the world. We know, at the core of our being, that the impulsive hug given by your toddler, the laugh your newborn gives for the first time, or the teenager saying (even grudgingly) “Yeah, I love you too,” count. They count for so much.
We are tired but still we fight for what we believe in.
Womanhood is about giving life. For some of us, that means giving birth and nurturing our children. For others, it means giving our biological children up so that we can all have a better life. Being a woman, regardless of our chromosomal arrangement at birth, means nurturing, loving, and caring. It means taking on more than we even thought was possible and still having the strength to welcome others into the fold.
It means, in the immortal (I hope) words of Leslie Knope, “I am a goddess. . . Queen of all that I survey. Enemies of fairness and equality, hear my womanly roar!”
Women give life through our own powerful reproductive systems, through our emotional intelligence, through our innate capacity to fight for what we believe in, and through finding strength for ourselves and those around us.
Rachel is a blogger who writes dominantly about parenting and ways to juggle “having it all” even though she thinks that phrase is overblown and generally impossible. She also thinks that time management and cutting yourself a little slack are key to managing all the pieces of your life.
Rachel has an amazing husband and two delightful daughters (ages 3 years and 9 months). You can catch up with her via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, visit her on Facebook, check out what she’s reading on Twitter, or check out her musings on WordPress.