My literary research is rooted in concepts of history and home, and how both affect women’s lives. Women’s identities, connections, and careers straddle the public and the private, and it seems we are always fighting past notions of femininity and what it means to be a “good woman.”
The fight for who you are in whatever stage of life you happen to be in is one that occurs both at home and in the workplace. Many women find that they are both full-time employees and full-time homemakers as men also struggle with new roles and responsibilities.
Because the combination of public and private lives is still somewhat new for many women, there are few if any sources of advice and support to turn to; in fact, many women of previous generations still strongly recommend staying home with your children, even though that may be neither desirable nor economically feasible for this new generation of mothers.
One of the most difficult things to do is break from tradition, whether it be that of your family, an institution, or society at large. Anyone who has chosen a different path, whether it be religious, political, professional, or otherwise knows how challenged and lonely it can feel, even if she knows her choice is the right one.
Today, wherever you are, know that I am cheering you on in your pursuits in both the private and public spheres of your life. As women, we must come together and encourage individual choice and growth so that we can all experience the agency, power, and sense of community necessary to achieve meaningful and sustainable happiness.
Sending you a big hug, a high five, and a loud, “Get it!” this morning and always.
Thanks to tech.mn and hmc.yuku.com for the images.