“Find a group of people who challenge and inspire you; spend a lot of time with them, and it will change your life.”
— Amy Poehler
I originally started a version of this post a month ago, I couldn’t find the words I wanted to use, and I also didn’t want to sound smug. But I suppose International Women’s Day has just made me think about all these wonderful Women in my life and what they mean to me & I want to shout about them. Because they are Mothers, business women, lawyers, care-givers, artists, wives, teachers, partners, daughters and so much more. They are also amazing friends.
All of this they do everyday and it should be celebrated as such, but I suppose today just gives us even more reason to shout about it + remind us why it’s so important. We’re all raising the Future in some way.
The Lifelong Gang
As we grow and mature, so do our self-styled Girl Gangs. The friendships that I gained through my school life have proved lasting, we have stuck together, at times we may have followed different paths, but emerged with our own individual triumphs that we celebrate collectively. From primary to secondary school and onto university; through gap years, travelling and moving away for work & love; through relationships (good & bad), and more recently, marriages and now into Motherhood… As the first of my friends to have a baby I was worried as to what it would mean for us, for this group of women that were so integral to my life. In the end, it proved to be just another progression of our friendship, a new path that they supported me wholeheartedly on. For that I’m forever grateful because I needed it, I still need it, and I know it’s not the experience everyone has.
The Mama Gang
The internet can be cruel, but don’t let that deter you, there are so many gems to be found. In the new days of Motherhood I was so lucky to meet a vast and diverse group of mothers, who have lifted me on the days that just haven’t gone to plan and I’ve felt like I’m failing – they are all such a massive support. Many of us have met and laughed in person, others haven’t yet (but you probably wouldn’t know because we still know so much about each other and talk daily) and some of us might never meet – although, saying that saddens me, so I shall remain hopeful. They have helped me more than they can know and I love nothing more than to shout about them to everyone I know. Where once I may have (read: did) laugh at the very thought of ‘online friendships’, I am now proud to call each and every one of them a friend.
Sidenote: If you’d like to pop along to one of the meet-ups, the lovely Megan started up a Facebook Page to organise them –Mama Meet-Ups [Scotland]
Lynda the O.G.
My very own Mama was my original Girl Gang, the one that had my back since she brought me into this world on Day 0. She dropped me off on my first day of school in 1994, held my hand during chemotherapy in 2010, and in 2015 beamed at her new Grandson with all the love in the world just hours after he arrived in this world, as well as being there every day in between. You’re the absolute best Mother + Woman I know.
What started life as an appreciation post about my closest friends had made me realise just how many amazing women, mothers & girls I know – from my amazing friends (old + new) that I laugh so often with, to my Fierce Great Aunt Rose that I’ve grown up around (actually to all my wonderful aunts and cousins who are doing their own thing daily), to the wonderful women I work with (both now, and previously) that never fail to amaze me with candid snippets from their lives. Why don’t we use International Women’s Day and every other day to shout about our Gang(s) and the amazing Women that have, and continue, to shape our lives? Let’s shout about our own successes and support others in theirs. Let’s continue to teach our little ones to love equally, know their worth, be proud + unite.