In 1923, in a letter to Sherwood Anderson, Georgia O’Keeffe wrote:
“I feel that a real living form is the natural result of the individual’s effort to create the living thing out of the adventure of his spirit into the unknown — where it has experienced something — felt something — it had not understood — and from that experience comes the desire to make the unknown — known —
Making the unknown — known — in terms of one’s medium is all absorbing — if you stop to think of form — as form you are lost — The artists’s form must be inevitable — you mustn’t think you won’t succeed — ”
On International Women’s Day, I am taking a moment to pause and look around me, for examples of strength. I am taking a moment to acknowledge my own strengths and encouraging other women to do the same.
I find them in the book Georgia O’Keeffe Words | Works, which I keep on my desk to remind me of women who have been pioneers in their fields.
I see it in my Mother, who has faced adversity in her personal life and come out smiling with her kindness undimmed and her generosity in tact.
In life, I chose the road with no map, challenged my fears through painful experiences and grew my understanding through my mistakes. In myself, I see a women who draws strength in her ability to grow strong in her character through actively facing adversity. I will continue to choose developing my character over perception validation or goals of perfection. These are my strengths, they are my own and I take pride in them.
What are your strengths as a woman? Do you love with warmth, bring laughter to difficult situations? Do you show bravery in your calm as you face anger? Do you strive to bring art, music, culture to a young child’s life? You know your strengths are there, take today, even if you do so silently to honor your own. Can you look at your best friend, Sister, Mother, Partner and help her see her strengths? Today is your day.
“If you can believe in what you are and keep to your line — that is the most one can do with life.” Georgia O’Keeffe, 1944
To my Husband, in you, I see the heart of lion when it comes to defending the right of Women to live in a society free from physical abuse. You see my strength, values my character as my beauty and are vocal with me of your love for it, I thank you, I love you, I am complete holding your hand.