I hadn’t planned on a Thanksgiving post this year. I didn’t want to write about how thankful I am for family, friends, health, and happiness, although I am. I am thankful every day, so I feel a bit silly waxing poetic about it on here one day a year. On Tuesday, though, I realized I wanted to give thanks for something different. Something I don’t always remember to be thankful for.
On Tuesday night, I attended a reception for an upcoming documentary from AOL and PBS (with additional support from Simple skin care line). The documentary is called Makers: The Women Who Make America, and it celebrates woman who have and are shaping the face of our nation. Above you see Kathrine Switzer, the first woman to register for and run in the Boston Marathon. Her story, like many of the others on the Makers website, is both shocking and inspiring. I was particularly moved by Ruth Bader Ginsburg who shares that, upon their arrival at Harvard Law School, the president pulled all nine of the women in the class aside to ask why they felt they had the right to take a seat from a man. And when she graduated at the top of her class from Columbia (where she later transferred), no one would hire her. The irony? This put her in the ideal position to instead fight for equal rights for women.
There are Makers of all ages and backgrounds, but watching the videos reminded me that I was born in the middle of the Women’s Equal Rights Movement. As such, I’ve reaped the benefits with little of the work. Sure, there are still struggles and things are not quite where we’d like them to be, but it would never have crossed my mind not to pursue the career I wanted to, or attend the school that appealed to me most. And that is what I’m thankful for today… the women who have clawed their way into the system and paved the way for us all to follow our dreams.
I highly recommend that everyone (men and women!) spend some time on the Makers website. These women are smart, strong, and brave. And save the date on February 26th at 8pm to watch the full documentary on PBS. It’s going to be amazing.