Friday, July 23, 2010

The Value of a Woman

What is the value of a woman? Searching the internet, I found religious sites, romance and seduction sites, and even a couple of songs, "The Value of a Woman" and "A Woman's Worth." They all seemed to DE-value a woman, making her an object of desire or servitude. Searching for "the worth of a woman" led me to financial sites, a domestic violence site, and a celebration of "Women of Worth" in Vancouver.  Now we're talking.

The 6th annual Woman Of Worth (WOW)™ Conference  held in Vancouver this past May was titled: Empowered Leadership: Celebrating the Magnificence of Women.  One extraordinary day for 800 women that impacts a lifetime ...  The session tracks were Health | Wealth | Leadership | Empowerment | Chocolate Fountains!  I must put this on my calendar for next year. The WOW Event

According to Kofi Annan, Former Secretary-General, United Nations, "The future of the world depends on women."  Margaret Mead said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.” 

One group of women which has taken action to change the world is Women for Women International. The organization helps women survivors of war rebuild their lives.  Their theory of change: "When women are well, sustain an income, are decision-makers, and have strong social networks and safety-nets, they are in a much stronger position to advocate for their rights. This philosophy and our commitment to local leadership builds change and capacity at the grassroots level." Women for Women International

We won't feel empowered to change the world until we grant ourselves permission to love and respect ourselves.  Girls are often taught not to brag, not to think too highly of themselves, and to serve others first. Being assertive and realizing that we have something to offer the world comes slowly for many of us, and some never reach that point. On her 80th  birthday, my mother-in-law announced, "I'm 80 and I'll do what I want."  She rejected new recipes to try and invitations to attend events for which she had no interest.  I loved the woman she became, full of jokes and more relaxed than I'd ever seen her.  I rejoiced, but I was saddened at the same time.  What a shame to wait until she was 80 to do the things she wanted to do. I vowed then to live my life the way I want it now, and not wait till I'm 80. I value the person I really am, and put aside the small quiet voice that says, "Not worthy."

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