A very long time ago, I visited Norway with my parents to spend time with old family friends near Oslo. It was dreamy – a week full of skiing, snowboarding, hiking and abundant eating. On our last day, I remember walking with my mother through the town on our way to a restaurant for lunch.
She turned to me and my sisters, out of earshot of the others and said, “Whatever you do in life and no matter who you marry, get an education and experience under your belt. No-one can take that away from you.”
I later learned that the wife of the family we’d been visiting was a former domestic abuse victim – whose hair turned grey from stress before she’d even hit 30.
It’s International Women’s Day tomorrow, and all day I’ve been thinking about that lady – and all the other ladies who don’t have a voice to speak with. As a writer, I can’t imagine what it’s like to be unable to express your thoughts or views – to be so trapped.
I can’t fathom the notion of still being seen as someone’s property in 2017 – and yet so many women are still facing the same tale as old as time barriers.
I could talk about history, the eternal gulf and the injustice but more than anything, I think it’s so important to celebrate being a girl – because women kick ass. In a world full of such instability and dangerously unpredictable politics, tomorrow should be all about celebrating how simply great it is to be a woman – and everything that comes with it.
There are plenty of female idols I could name – Sophia Amoruso, Chiara Ferragni, Rosa Parks – my great grandmother, but really, there is something inspiring in every girl that’s ever existed on this planet. And tomorrow should be all about that – recognising girl power in every shape and size.
So I’ll keep it simple – here’s to girl power.