The “good old days” are often reminisced in response to the fear of the present. More and more women today refuse to play the role of the docile damsel and it concerns those who expect them to be hypersubmissive. With more women boldly asserting their autonomy and their confidence in the choices they make for themselves, there are a host of men (and women who have internalized their misogyny) who believe that these women have gone too far. And in observing this, they respond saying that women should be put in their place.
I can roll with that.
Among the places that I enjoy the most, the kitchen ranks as one of my favorites. My love for feeding people, especially hearty breakfast foods like omelets, boils over when I am able to provide this kind of hospitality. I enjoy being creative with the different colors the various ingredients provide plus the flavors that their combinations create. And witnessing the pleasure it brings to those who eat it is priceless.
I think of the laboratory and how being in a STEM field has given me another avenue to put my mind to use. Being part of research teams and collaborating with them to come up with the best ideas we can muster to perform the tasks before us is thrilling. Then there is the execution of our ideas, our trial and error that can sometimes be a pain but is always fulfilling. To present my work and ideas in front of those who are curious reminds me that, yes, I was born for this.
I think of my childhood self and how she was a very rough and competitive girl in school. While my present athletic side of myself only comes out during leisurely athletic activities, there are women like Serena Williams and Rhonda Rousey who have made successful careers out of their skilled athleticism, challenging the perception of what a female athlete is “supposed” and thriving while doing so.
I think of shows like Orange is the New Black which has showcased a diverse cast of women in every sense of the word. I think of women like Shonda Rhimes who has made hit shows like Scandal and How To Get Away With Murder starring Kerry Washington and Viola Davis, respectively. I see how shows like these have provided roles for black women to be portrayed outside of stereotypical roles. And as a black woman, it means so much to me to see them and other black women like Laverne Cox and Uzo Aduba grace the TV screen. It inspires me greatly to see Viola Davis making history as the first black woman to win outstanding lead actress despite the Emmy’s existing for the past 66 years. Davis’ acceptance speech moved me as she brought light to the reality women of color face when it comes to the acting world.
The only thing that separates women of color from everyone else is opportunity. You cannot win an Emmy for roles that are simply not there. – Viola Davis
I think of the next generation of women who will rise up because of women who are currently making their place in the world. I think of the next generation of women who will pursue things like being an engineer or being a firefighter because of the women before them. Male-dominated careers like these are feeling the ripples of women claiming their place in them. And as more and more women realize their full potential in the vocations that their hearts beat for, the status quo will continue to be disturbed.
So yes, women everywhere should be put in their place. They need to assume their roles where their hearts lead them. They should be encouraged to travel through their ambitious trails that lead them to their destiny. As for where that place is? Well, that is for the woman to decide.
What are some of your dreams and goals you have reached or aspire to reach as a woman? Who are the women in your life that are inspiring you to achieve them?