I'll be honest, I don't think I've ever heard of International Women's Day until this year, but I'm a big fan. I remember last year hearing a friend say that she was proud not to call herself a feminist. I'll admit, I didn't reply. It wasn't that I agreed with her, far from it. I was trying at the time to figure out why anyone would be proud of not supporting equal rights for men and women, which is the actual definition of the word.
|My mom with Luke|
There was no discussion of feminism in my household, but there didn't need to be. To say I grew up surrounded by strong women would be an understatement. From my mom I learned that you didn't wait around for someone to help you. My sister, brother, and I would tease her that she was "freakishly strong." Only five foot two, I still remember that she moved a ridiciously heavy marble topped dresser on her own because it needed to be done. My brother and husband had moved it together the week before and commented on how heavy it was. My mom, she just did it on her own because it needed to be done.
|Mumsie and me|
My Mt. Rushmore of role models for women would have to include my mom and both of my grandmothers along with my great aunt, GG. From them I learned independence along with the notion that women can have a great business sense. They showed me that I didn't want someone to wait on me, but someone that saw me as their equal, a partner. At times it backfires, I should ask for help more, but I crave the independence of knowing I can do it myself.
|My grandma and Great Aunt GG|
I thought of these ladies today when I got home. I had ordered a couch from Pottery Barn the other day. It was a lot cheaper than any other couch we had seen. In reading the description I learned that the lower price was due to the fact that you had to put it together. I figured the savings was worth the effort. I knew it wouldn't last as long as a regularly priced couch, but I rationalized that I probably didn't want it to. With having it in the kitchen, it would get a lot of use and maybe shouldn't be a high quality couch for that location.
As I arrived home I saw the couch sitting on the back deck. I considered the box. I could wait for Chris to get home, but his back is temperamental and I didn't want him to put it out getting it in the house. I could wait for my boys, but they were in track practice and I wanted it inside now. And so, I figured I could do it. My mom was freakishly strong after all.
Please visualize this - I'm a bit over five foot one. This box was taller than I was and weighed 123 pounds. I walked it across the deck to the door. Tried to get it up the back stairs, but it got stuck. I was on the side with the back door, Rosie was on the other side, stuck in the kitchen, not helping a bit. I finally climbed up on the box, got in the kitchen, was able to pry the box back up, got it closer to the stairs this time, and finally pushed it all the way up and into the kitchen. Then maneuvered the box into the sitting area and got the couch out. It was a process.
|Rosie on the new couch|
At the end, I stood there looking at that beast. I knew why my mom, my grandmothers, and my great aunt were so stubborn and independent - it feels great to do something on your own. Happy International Women's Day to all. I hope you celebrated on Wednesday and toasted the women in your life. Judging by my amazing nieces and students, the next generation is going to rock this world. I can't wait to watch them grow.
Slice of Life is a challenge hosted by Two Writing Teachers.