March 08, 2018

A moment of gratitude and empathy: Celebrating the spirit of Women's Day

Here's how I want to celebrate women's day.

This is for all the feminists who broke the norms throughout history to achieve something like equality for us today. I cannot express my gratitude for you enough.

To all those inspirational names in history who have given the women of today someone to look upto, and to all those nameless, faceless spirits whose pages have faded away in history, to the conscious fighters, the suffragettes and the open rebels who fought for what was right and due, and to the modest movers who took small steps towards personal liberation without even knowing they were fighting for feminism....

Every small step you've taken has taken humanity closer to achieving equality. I may not have known you, I may not have seen you, the world or history may not to recognise your names or faces, but I am aware that even my basic rights like voting, financial independence and education are privileges hard-earned through your struggles in the course of your lifetimes. Everyone of you did your part, and you have all collectively made this world better in your own special ways.

I understand that the struggle has not ended, and this world still has a long way to go before it can be called a just world for people of all genders. In my own country, marital rape is a legal right, and as I write, I am aware that there are many, many women in this world who do not share the same privileges as I do because basic rights are privileges often denied for women. There are many who are deprived of education, and many who are denied the right to vote, and many who do not get paid as much as a man for doing the same amount of work, and many who are denied to be born. The right to live with dignity is a privilege in reality for many women.

I am also aware that there are many feminists in this world today, who are striving to make this world a better place, each in their own personal way. I want to express my solidarity to their cause and I want to tell them that I am one of them...

Even though I don't know each of you personally, each of you have touched my life and the lives of all the women in very special ways and have changed my life forever. Every small step taken by each of you to our collective cause sustains us all.

This is to the women of today and yesterday, who have persevered against discrimination to create a fair world. The world is far from fair when it comes to gender discrimination. A perfectly fair world for all cannot be achieved in a single lifetime. It takes a different kind of perseverance to fight for something which may not be attained in your lifetime, and to still persist for what is right and due. Your endurance is beyond inspiring. I too will try to endure. I too will try to do my part, and become a drop in the ocean.

Every woman in this world would have suffered discrimination knowingly or unknowingly sometime in her life. To everyone of you, those who are feminists and those who are not, those who are aware  that they are facing discrimination and those who are not... There are times when you suffer from discrimination and try to consciously or unconsciously oppose the injustice imposed on you. This is my oath to you, that during those times, irrespective of who you are and what you are as a person, you deserve my unconditional empathy. I want to tell you that you are unequivocally right when you question why you should be denied what is due to you purely because of your gender. Let the whole world tell you otherwise and make you question your sense of unfairness. I want to tell you that you don't / didn't deserve to suffer because of discrimination. Even if justice is unattainable to you, sense of righteousness is empowering. I am telling you - During those moments where your conscience guides you to question or oppose what is wrong, you are right. And you are a feminist whether you know it or not, even if it is for those few moments.

Now I want to express my special gratitude to all the bloggers who have opened my eyes by introducing me to feminism and making me understand what it means to be a woman.

Indianhomemaker - link

Melissa McEwan - link

The Belle Jar - link

And to the many authors whose posts enlightened me on many aspects of feminism and rape culture.

I owe you feminism :) May fairness prevail! Happy women's day to all!