I'm rebooting a post in honor of an organization that I've had the privilege of partnering with, #shesharesherstory—created by women who got fed up with what so many women have become fed up with and decided to do something about our inequities. To the amazing women of #shesharesherstory, we see, hear and feel you. This song is for you.
Enjoy my happy bulleted list of three: What a woman wants - a 2021 reboot.
Respect - Yep, the same respect that the incomparable Aretha Franklin was talking about. It's the same respect that women are demanding today. We'll have our first female Vice President of the United States. It's historical and monumental. But because she's part black and all woman, people still want to find a way to make her presence and this moment illegitimate. Politics aside, I can relate to reaching a personal and vital milestone, being so proud of myself for reaching a goal, only to have someone downplay its significance or offer me an underwhelming response. While I don't look for anyone to hype me up, I would appreciate some respect. Like, put some RESPECT on my accomplishments. Not "you did well for a woman," but rather, "you did well." PERIOD.
To be heard - Shout out to Helen Reddy and her famous song, I Am Woman. Her opening lyrics, "I am woman, hear me roar, with numbers too great to ignore..." She's saying we- women deserve because we've earned the right to be heard and valued. Our contributions are too outstanding. Our numbers are too great to ignore. From medicine and science to politics and education, please don't act like we weren't there at the forefront in the middle and bringing in the rear. Women aren't looking for any handouts but fairness. Acknowledge our contributions, and don't try to diminish them. Recognize our voices, our strengths, and our power. Being heard is more than having a seat at the proverbial "table." Being heard is having the opportunity to build our buildings and fill them with tables that we designed ourselves.
To be paid - I'll give this one to Mrs. Beyonce Giselle Knowles Carter. Remember what she said in Run The World (Girls)? I hear this song and, I don't know about anyone else, but I immediately hear an anthem about pay equality. Women don't want the impossible. With everything women do today, this should be the last thing that we should need because, honestly, equal pay for women should be an obvious response. Normalize paying us what we deserve. Match our credentials, our ethics, our drive, our experience, our accomplishments up against any suitable competitor, and watch us exceed expectations. It's not a one-time occurrence. Women constantly make exceptional seem regular, making you feel like you can do it with the same level of finesse. We show up sick, outnumbered, limited in resources, but highly resourceful. Our innovation is just shy of impeccable every time, and this our regular morning routine. Yet, after doing all things, less creating a new galaxy, somehow, someone somewhere still felt justified in offering us ~80 cents on the dollar. Sure we're doing big things and making bigger salaries. However, the truth is, even 6+ figure women are still making less than male counterparts with the same or lesser roles, with less experience or similar credentials. We still have to explain the rationale behind our ask. The nerve!! I say this on behalf of all the hard-working women holding it down across the globe. I'm with Mrs. Carter...F U...Pay Me.
When I think of how amazing women are, I can't help but be proud of the women who contributed to my making and prouder to become one. The women that have had my back taught me to be bold and brave, and truthful. Proud of the women that missed opportunities but still kept pushing so that women like me could continue to carry the torch. Women like my mom, my mentor, and my 8th grade English teacher. My goal is to be one of those women who inspired, supported, and educated others and kept the ball rolling.
I had fun with this post, and hopefully, it hit exactly how it was supposed to. If you haven't heard any of these songs, you need to check them out. Helen will have you in your feels like maybe you can fly or something. And you know what, maybe you can. To give to a head start, go ahead and take flight, sis! While your soaring, I'll use my wings to create an updraft for you to help maintain your altitude. We got this.
These are absolutely my thoughts...