This is my daughter’s first International Women’s Day since she became a woman herself, so I find myself deeply grateful for all the women in my life (and world!) who are showing her the different ways you can be a woman, and all the different ways women can make a difference. I want to thank all of you for what you have done for her, as an incipient woman, and for me, as a mother trying to figure out what it means to raise a fierce woman in this crazy world.
I’m talking to you, the friends who are visionary, passionate social and political activists, and show what it means to engage with the world.
I am humbled by you, the women of colour and multiracial and disabled women who peel back the layers of identity and privilege and challenge me and my daughter to think about how our feminism fits into the larger struggle for justice and equality.
I thank you, the brilliant business and government and NGO leaders who show that women can step to the front, without losing their humanity.
I am inspired by you, the artists and performers and creators who bring your souls forward and reimagine what self-expression looks like.
I am awed by you, the queer and gender queer and gender nonconforming people who have created space for a 13-year-old girl to see the possibilities for her gender and sexual identity in ways I could never have imagined.
I am grateful for you, the working women and single women and mothers and independent nomads and grandmothers and aunts and godmothers, who make it possible for my daughter to imagine family and relationships and children as a spectrum of options instead of an imposed path.
I salute you, my sister geeks, who have helped my daughter see that there as many ways of exploring and embracing tech as there are task management apps.
Many thanks to all of you for continuing to expand the meaning and varieties of womanhood, without ever forgetting that part of that meaning lies in inviting my daughter into our common struggle.