Growing up, the women I saw were portrayed to be seen fighting each other, reeling of jealousy from the success another woman has. Think Mean Girls, Bring it On and 10 Things I Hate About You. In my experience, this could not be further from the truth. This wasn’t representative of the wonderful women in my life. I was surrounded by teachers who showed me what it means to be ambitious, strong empathetic, and aunts who showed me what it meant to own businesses, look after your family and being the best version of you. Women are inspirational humans who have to push through societal norms and expectations be it in the workplace or in their friendship circles in order to live life as authentically as possible.
I am constantly I am in awe of women from all across the world. Women who have had to flee their countries, women who have to care for loved ones, women of colour who cannot get hold of the sufficient healthcare they need because they are not being listened to. Just last week I read Stylist magazine filled with inspirational refugee women who were doing amazing things within their communities.
Over the past few years, I have attended events like live podcasts and bookish events on my own. Every time I do, I come away having forged some kind of connection with the woman next to me. I will be waiting in line for something or the person sitting in the seat next to me will start up a conversation. We would instantly get chatting. The bond may last until the end of the evening where we walk to the tube station together. Others go beyond that where we speak on social media quite regularly. A couple have even blossomed into close friendships. This instant connection, this fellowship, this camaraderie is something I like to call the sisterhood. Women coming together creating memories and feeling safe in each other’s company.
This year has been traumatic and tragic for many of us regardless of our gender but the injustices towards women have been paramount. Just before the pandemic hit I joined an Instagram group filled with intelligent, kind, empathetic, strong women, each one of them lifting each other up and listening to each other, just being there to lean on has been monumental. It was probably the best thing I have done in a long time. The group chat lights up every day. There have been times when I have cried, felt hurt, needed a release from the pain I was feeling and it was other women who allowed me the space to do this.
The power in feeling supported by other women, being in a space where you help each other, guide each other and be there for each other is special. I have seen firsthand the impact this can have.
A lot of my friends have faced some big milestones over the past year in their personal lives which would usually result in lots of events, hugs, and just general celebration. Rather than ignoring this, it has been replaced with surprise presents, weekly video chats, and just general check-ins with genuine honest conversations about how we are feeling.
Society leads us to believe there is only space for a finite number of women to succeed but that is so far from the truth. There is space for all of us to thrive and grow together. Over the past week, I have seen women coming together, supporting each other, sharing their story but also supporting their friends and other women. Finally, the world is seeing what I have known for a while. Women are powerful beings and coming together is both impactful and rewarding.
So in the words of High School Musical, women, We’re all in this together.