Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Strong Women

I’ve grown up surrounded by women, a lot of them really strong spirited. In addition to being raised by an incredibly strong single mother and having numerous aunts (both blood related and those who are close family friends), my mentors have been amazing women who have come into my life as a campus minister, an English professor, and a Catholic nun. All of them could stand firmly planted while chaos, change, and uncertainly swirled around them at a frantic pace. Now that I’m older, I choose to surround myself with a core group of wonderful friends who are never more than a phone call or email away.

Throughout different times in my life I’ve called upon these women – for guidance, for healing, for a confidante, for a shoulder to cry on, for a spirit needing restored, for a reason to celebrate. They have been my lifelines when things go wrong, hold me down when my thoughts carry me away, and lift me up when I can’t see the stars.

Recently I read the book, Saving CeeCee Honeycutt. (If you haven’t read it yet, do it! You won’t be sorry.) One of the major themes within the book is the power of women. Much like Steel Magnolias, the women in the story have their issues and come from different social and economic backgrounds. Despite that, all of their complexities and inner workings are woven tightly together to form a safety net for each other, each woman an extremely vital piece that helps to hold the net together.

The book really made me want to celebrate the women in my life. I don’t often stop to say thank you or even acknowledge how imperative the women of my past and present are to me. I need to do that more often and remind them that they are the important for their place in my life.

Do you have a strong network of women in your life that you depend upon or a particular woman you need to celebrate?