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My thoughts on International Women's Day (Wednesday 8th March 2023)

Today marks International Women’s day, and without sounding “too cliched” I wanted to share my own thoughts.

I think of the role I now carry out today and think to myself perhaps I’ve been influenced by my female ancestors.

On my father’s Irish side of the family, apparently I had a “great- great grandmother” who had 13 children and earned a wage as a midwife, cycling the mountains of Mourne in County Down Ireland.

On my mother’s side I also had a female ancestor who was described in the census as a “Monthly Nurse”- todays equivalent of a "postnatal doula", assisting women in their homes for a month after the birth of a baby. So I suppose you could argue that the type of person you are, is determined, to some extent by your genes.

Moving forward to present day, I know lots of women in our local community who impact society for the better.

I think of all the ordinary women I meet every day, who in a nutshell “Get on with life”. They get up, tidy the house, put a wash on, check the contents in the fridge, before heading to do a day’s work, then on the way home, stop off at the local grocery store to get the essentials, cook the family meal, wash up, do the lunches, hang the washing out, follow up on family commitments and see to the kids, before falling into bed at night, and starting all over again the next day. Sounds familiar right? Yes, no doubt you heard of the phrase, “It takes a village to raise a child” but let’s face it, it’s the women who take on a huge role in helping co-ordinate and run that village.

Here's another group of women I admire- the ones who make life choices which strengthen them, who become happier the older they get. I am still working on that one!

I think also of the women, who personally have encouraged me, cheered me on, & picked me up over the last 3 years. During the start of the pandemic when I lost my job, my career, my identity even, it was “the sisters” who helped get me back on track. When I was weeping and wailing like a Scarlett O’Hara at the end of Gone with The Wind (my favourite movie by the way) and bemoaning “Where shall I go, What shall I do?” It was women, most of whom I never met before, who offered me help when I needed it.

Their kindness I will always remember. Those who gave me a job entrusting their precious little ones into my care, a purpose to get up in the morning, or those who sent thoughtful text messages, offered words of wisdom, or who met for coffee, or who walked beside me on Philip Island beaches. Hats off to these women! This is why female friendships are so important. We spend so much time nurturing our families, we sometimes need others to nurture us.

So today, as we celebrate International Women’s Day, be conscious of your fellow females. Smile at that woman walking towards you in the street. Give encouragement to that struggling young mum. Send a loving text to a friend, tell another friend how you appreciate their friendship, buy her a coffee or go out for a long walk together. Make a difference. Let us make today mean something for another woman!

Famous Quote - "Here's to strong women. May we know them. May we be them. May we raise them "(Unknown).

Verity x

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