March: Take Up Space and Stand in Your Power, Unapologetically
In 1987, the United States officially recognized March as Women’s History month. That was a year before I was born. This March marks 30 years of Women’s History month.
I don’t remember a March in school without it. I remember writing about Susan B. Anthony and dreaming about what I’d do with the rights and privileges women before me fought for me to enjoy.
As a young woman, I was lucky enough to have representation in my own life of strong, fierce women who didn’t take no for an answer. My mother raised me to speak my mind and then, in high school, I went to an all-girls school that encouraged much of the same.
It made me a strong, ferociously independent woman and it wasn’t until college that I saw myself pull back and dim my light to make others comfortable.
Women do this all the time.
The easiest way to recognize this is with how much space you allow yourself to take up and just how many times you say “I’m sorry” in a given day.
My personal challenge for the month of March -- to honor all of those women before us and the work that still needs to be done -- is to only apologize if it is truly warranted. Not if I am simply walking in front of someone or if I am walking onto an elevator when they are walking off.
The easiest way to go about doing this? Watch men. White men rarely say I’m sorry and it would do all of us some good to watch how they interact. It’ll frustrate you but it will also help you develop your own sense of “standing in your power.”
It is different for each one of us and, I truly believe, it evolves over time. Grab your #GirlGang and make this happen this month -- not only for yourselves but for all the women to come and all the women currently fighting for their right to choose, their right to be accepted and their right to live a life they love.
We can do this if we work together, not against one another.
This definition is the one that resonates most with me because the power I am standing in isn’t for me -- a middle class white woman -- it is for all of the women who don’t have the representation they need or the voice to tell them that anything IS possible, if they fight hard enough and surround themselves with the right people who will fight for them too.
Find an “I’m sorry” buddy and tell them every time you do it and ask for a pick me up -- I’ve done this particular one for years with friends over G-chat, iMessage and email.
You can do this, I know you can. And I’ll be right there with you.