I wanted to jot down a few words for the women. The 2015 theme for Women’s History Month is, “weaving the stories of women’s lives.” Far from being a feminist, I still believe that women should be appreciated every damn day. We weave the loom of life and these stories are simple: it’s in everything.
I don’t mean to devalue you, fellas. I love you and I don’t deny that we need you, too. I am not a “girl’s girl” (frankly, I have no idea what #7 even means). I grew up with two brothers, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I am who I am and love who I am in a vast part because of you; thank you. I’m inordinately good at, and genuinely interested in, video games, sports, shooting, etc. Actually, a girl gave me the love for shooting, but the impetus was to blow off some steam after a big breakup, so I attribute that also, in some way, to a guy’s role in my life.
It is bittersweet that we still have to make a point of valuing women. If there wasn’t a problem, it wouldn’t have to be fixed. I grew up at Yale University, and one of my favorite public art pieces is ‘The Women’s Table’ by Maya Lin (pictured below). I used to climb on the marble as a kid, running my hands over the engraved numbers that spiral out from the fountainhead. So, this story beings with a long string of zeros. Founded in 1704, Yale only began to officially allow women to attend since 1873. Well, in 2005 I proudly added another number to the Table (and then promptly picked up and brought my womanhood elsewhere, but that’s a different story for a different day).
I love being a woman, and I hope that most of you ladies out there feel that way. This, I think, is a great indicator that things are looking up for us. I am not afraid of anything. I have just as much opportunity and earning potential as the men around me, if not more. Of course, this is certainly not the norm, and it is one of my life commitments to continue to fight for the women in the world who cannot confidently say the same.
Recently, I had the honor to meet the newly appointed Editor-in-Chief of The Economist, Zanny Minton Beddoes. I am not the type of person who is easily starstruck. I’ve partied with Chris Brown (no, he didn’t hit me) and brushed shoulders with Steven Spielberg without batting an eyelash. But I’ve gotta say, Ms. Minton Beddoes is an inspiration. Not only do I love being a woman, I am proud to be one. Still, I find it concerning that a woman in a leadership position is shocking headline news.
My story as a woman: I will leave a legacy for women NOT to want to be equal, but to be proud of who and what they are, without having to live up to any standard. Equality is still a standard set by someone else. Let’s liberate ourselves from that man-made measure.