This March marks the celebration of National Women’s History Month, so we asked Glitter Guide contributor, Kara Stout, to offer us a little history lesson in honor of the occasion. Brush up on the female-focused facts below!
As I reviewed the timeline and major milestones of women’s history, I couldn’t help but feel so proud of and encouraged by all the past women who courageously made history and the current women who continue to make our history so impactful.
It also, quite honestly, was astounding as well. It’s hard to comprehend that women were not allowed to vote, much less arrested for trying to do so, as Susan B. Anthony was in 1872. It also put into perspective that it really wasn’t that long ago that women were given the right to vote. The 19th Amendment gave us the right to finally vote in 1920. My grandmother was 15 years old at the time, and as she said, it was an incredible time in history to witness.
Fast forward through some amazing other accomplishments (I highly encourage you to review these milestones as well) to 1981 when Sandra Day O’Connor became the first woman Supreme Court Justice and now to today when Hillary Clinton became the first woman presidential nominee for a major political party. Whether or not you voted for her, this was a huge accomplishment for women, and I do hope one day soon a woman will become president.
“To all the little girls who are watching, never doubt that you are valuable and powerful and deserving of every chance and opportunity in the world to pursue and achieve your own dreams.” —Hillary Clinton, 2016 concession speech
I also have to encourage you to see the movie “Hidden Figures” if you have not yet seen it. This movie is based on African American female mathematicians who worked at NASA in the ’50s and ’60s. It is a beautiful movie, yet difficult to watch, because it’s unfathomable that this type of discrimination was ever allowed. These incredible women show such strength and perseverance against prejudice and stereotypes to contribute to an important historical moment in time on multiple levels.
“Each time a woman stands up for herself, without knowing it possibly, without claiming it, she stands up for all women.” —Maya Angelou
In addition to standing up for ourselves, we must also support and stand up for one another. As women, we need to encourage and love each other well, and be more vocally supportive. We need to continue to stand up for any discrimination we may witness today, as it still exists, unfortunately. We have definitely come far, but there’s still great work to do in our community and in our hearts.
We must resist any urges to put down other women, gossip or spread untruths. It’s crucial we also don’t speak negatively about other women. This will do amazing things for our gender and make an impact.
I am so very grateful to be a woman—not because of the fun clothes, dresses, makeup and cute shoes we get to wear (that’s definitely a bonus), but because of our hearts, our passion, our gentleness, our strength and our beauty. We have such unique gifts for this world; I pray you will embrace your gifts fully.
In 1987, Congress declared March as National Women’s History Month. As women, we have so much to celebrate! So, here are five ways you can do just that this month:
- Throw a Girls’ Dinner Party: Let’s be honest. A girls’ dinner party is always a good idea! Make a good meal, set a beautiful table with flowers and candles, and put the phones away. Make it a time to be fully present with each other, sharing any struggles and encouraging each other’s dreams. You could also offer each friend a small gift to take home, maybe a gift that’s uplifting like a journal or art print.
- Girls’ Outdoor Picnic: Yes, this is another option centered around food. I think it’s safe to say the way to a girl’s heart is food! You can make it a group effort, potluck style. Just set a time and place, bring a picnic blanket and basket full of goodies you want to contribute, and ask the girls to also bring their favorite simple snacks or drinks.
- Write a handwritten letter to three women whom you admire: Snail mail is really fun to receive. Take the time to write to three women letting them know you see their efforts and you support them. Encourage them to continue on their dreams, tell them how amazing they’re doing and how much you love them.
- Purchase flowers or a gift card from a local coffee shop and give it to a woman you don’t know: It could be a new mom with a baby, a female entrepreneur or any woman who catches your eye that you sense could use that extra love. Can you imagine how that could change her day, to unexpectedly receive pretty flowers or a gift card from another woman?
- Gather a group of girls and volunteer for a women-focused organization: Pick an organization or charity that means a lot to you, and give back. You could also decide to make this a monthly or quarterly event, where you and this group of ladies gather to give back to this same organization or a variety of women-focused organizations.