To quote the iconic Bob Dylan, “times they are a’changing”.
Every other lead story, newsfeed article, or headline is about the ever growing movement of strong female leaders emerging from the corners of our society. Women willing to stand in the center, take the reigns, lead us to change. Strong women with strong voices. While I get giddy with excitement when I read of these women, I also find myself thinking “duh”. My entire life I have been surrounded by strong women with strong voices doing tough things and making big changes. I never questioned what role a girl could play in the world. I was raised by parents who made many mistakes but who never dreamed of instilling a feeling of “less than” in their daughter. As I’ve grown into adulthood, I have alway surrounded myself with a strong tribe of women who make me laugh, allow me to cry, show me strength and grace and can carry hard things better than the strongest men I know.
In honor of International Women’s Day, I would love to share with you some badass women who make my life sweeter.
My women of origin
My mother taught me how to throw a great party. Her last day of school and Halloween parties were legendary in my childhood. She taught me sometimes a clean house and a well balanced meal pale in comparison to a porch full of friends and a tub of bean dip.
My Grammy taught me to keep a suitcase packed at all times just in case someone needed you to travel on a dime. Hers was packed and ready to go the morning she was called home to the Lord.
My Gramsie taught me the key to a happy marriage is to make him think it was his idea. It’s a powerful Jedi mind trick!
I have no memory of life before we were friends. None. Thankfully she has a memory that could win awards as she is the keeper of my childhood. Who was my fourth grade teacher? I have no idea but Annie…she’s on it.
Our lives are separated by distance of a thousand miles but we still trade secrets and recipes and Girl Scout leader tips. My deepest prayer for my girls is they find their Annie.
And she’s a lake living, police officer, yogi, mama of three – can you get more badass?
These are the women who I survive the ins and outs of daily life with. We are friends and confidants and mamas to each other’s kids. They are a tribe of women who can laugh hard, party hard, love deeply and someone always has an egg to borrow.
It was a crazy thing I decided to start a two years ago (why not add another thing to the plate??). A local chapter of Moms Run This Town- a free running group for women. From that group, this quad was born. We’ve run and laughed along more miles than I can count. And we have a daily text thread that drives the husbands crazy.
Women with a passion for helping other women become strong and healthy. But the shenanigans of this group can make me giggle.
Then are some women who I don’t know personally but who amaze me, inspire me, challenge me. When I arrive at the pearly gates, I’m going to ask that these women join me and my tribe for a great meal.
Jen Hatmaker, Rachel Hollis, Shauna Niequest, Glennon Doyle
This group of women’s words have taught me that grace, love and faith are messy and beautiful. That loving someone well is most important and that sometimes that means loving myself more than others. Their books are marked up and coffee streaked and tear stained.
My favorite Instagrammers
Beauty and health and food are not about being a size 2 or eating kale all day long. These women are funny and influential and real and so much more inspiring than a six pack abs. Go follow these three IG accounts-
The Notorious RBG
Come one. There is no one more badass. She is the embodiment of “she may be little but she is fierce”. I cannot wait for the documentary about this political giant to come out!
And finally, the most important
These girls are my dream come true. These girls are an opportunity to see my wrongs made right. These girls make me laugh and cry and want to figure a way to freeze frame time. These girls make me want to become the best version of myself to model a mama who is happy and healthy and whole. To show them the importance of a community, laughter, love and truth. To pass on the knowledge of how to host a rocking party and keep a proverbial suitcase packed in your trunk. To instill in them the idea that love isn’t about someone making you complete but someone making you better. To model to them that grace is more powerful than perfection and that laughter and running are the best medicine.
Ava and Vivian, my prayer is you grow up into a world where women don’t need a special day to be acknowledged. A world where a woman president or a CEO or supreme court justice doesn’t make headlines. But until then may you find your own badass women who make your life sweet.