I think we forget the power we have as women, not only to change the World but ourselves.
Women from all races and walks of life have always had it hard, but if history has reiterated one thing over and over, it is that we have the ability to change the direction of any injustice. We celebrate Women's day in South Africa because on 9 August 1956, more than 20 000 South African women of all races staged a march on the Union Buildings in protest against the proposed amendments to the Urban Areas Act of 1950, commonly referred to as the "pass laws". That is courage, but even more important it is a symbol that as woman no matter who we are we can stand together for a common belief.
My wish for women all across the World is that we start making it easier for each other, be kinder to one another. Centuries have conditioned us to believe women have to behave in a certain way, live in a certain way, dress in a certain way to be happy respected and fulfilled, that we are competition to each other and the list continues, but it is time for us as a gender to say enough.
It is time for us as as women to say NO I nor my sister will be raped, mistreated, abused, used, objectified, and vilified. Enough with the sexist jokes, gross remarks or the constant insults about wanting to be men, it will not be easy but change never is.
I have been blessed to be surrounded by woman who always fought for what they wanted. My mother had one of the first black owned estate agencies and has been persecuted and tear gassed for her beliefs. Granted this is a woman who made the priest remove the vow 'honor thy husband' before she would marry my Dad because no man should be honored, but respected. Maybe I have had good role models but they still forced me to sit in every board meeting since I was 11, made me learn to play golf well and smoke cigars because of the boys club mentality you still find in business. My parents knew the true decisions were not made around the table but on the golf courses and smoking lounges, they did not want me at a disadvantage. Work like you are one of the boys till you are up far enough to change the entire system. Today I feel like I want the system to be different now, I want my emotions to be seen as strength not weakness, I want my period pain to be respected and considered not thought of as an inconvenience the way breastfeeding and pregnancy is. I want guys to shake my hand the way they do other men and not expect me to give them a hug, you don't want to be pressed up against someone so you shake hands but I get a weird look because I won't hug you. We have come a long way but we are not there yet.
We need to continue to uplift and support each other, but in turn we need to respect and honor the people that help us and build up our lives an family. If we are too do things differently we need to do it all differently. May the road to our throne not be paved with the hearts and hopes of other woman but our own blood sweat and tears.
Silk and sheer Skirt and scarf worn as chocker : Aimmea
Boots : Aldo
Photographer : Clint Jacobs
Still I rise by Maya Angelou
You may write me down in history With your bitter, twisted lies, You may tread me in the very dirt But still, like dust, I'll rise.
Does my sassiness upset you? Why are you beset with gloom? 'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells Pumping in my living room.
Just like moons and like suns, With the certainty of tides, Just like hopes springing high, Still I'll rise.
Did you want to see me broken? Bowed head and lowered eyes? Shoulders falling down like teardrops. Weakened by my soulful cries.
Does my haughtiness offend you? Don't you take it awful hard 'Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines Diggin' in my own back yard.
You may shoot me with your words, You may cut me with your eyes, You may kill me with your hatefulness, But still, like air, I'll rise.
Does my sexiness upset you? Does it come as a surprise That I dance like I've got diamonds At the meeting of my thighs?
Out of the huts of history's shame I rise Up from a past that's rooted in pain I rise
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide, Welling and swelling I bear in the tide. Leaving behind nights of terror and fear I rise
Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and the hope of the slave. I rise I rise I rise.