International Women’s Day

I value myself. I like myself. I find that I do my best. I consider myself bold.

I have jumped into new situations many times in my life, from immigrating to another country, to going back to school in my forties, to leaving my husband…only to come back to him again, to writing fiction and to owning restaurants.

I have not followed a straight path, with one goal in mind. That is looking at me from the outside; how I may be perceived. However, the one goal I’ve always pursued is an internal and selfish one: to do what I find the right thing to do at the moment.

I became a mother and was the mother I believed in. Not the mother others expected me to be. I believed my children to be their own people, growing up to be themselves. They are not a clone of me. They may resemble me in some ways but mostly, they’re made up of their environment, their experiences, and their outlook.

I became a late entry student. I delved into the arts: painting, theater, dance, and writing. It’s a struggle, if you’re out to make money from your creativity. But I’m not, because I’m selfish; I’m doing this for me. The truth behind the reality behind the mask wants out. I follow that.

I became a partner, a married partner for 39 years, now an unmarried partner to the same man. We grew up together. We struggled together. We pursued a life of dreams. We worked hard and had children. We never reached our dreams. But we shared the work and the struggle. We found satisfaction from creating life.

I was always an artist. If, by artist, you visualize an independent spirit that sets down her own rules to live by, yes, you’re looking at me. Finding my own way, following my own ideas, and fetching my own fortune.

I was always a feminist. If, by feminist, you visualize an equal to you, to them, and to everybody, yes, you’re looking at me. Learning to ignore intimidation, letting new thoughts in, and living life in my own skin.

I applaud women for their resilience, their patience, their instinct, and their insight.

Happy International Women’s Day!

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