Open Letter to Women I Admire

December 23, 2011

Dear Heroines,

 
I appreciate your strength, creativity, open heart, transparency, and confidence. I want more of these traits in me.

     More light shining through.

 
     More unapologetic enjoyment.

     More honesty.

     More laughter.

 
The Christmas season has been hard this year. There's a lot of fear and sadness as my mom's health fluctuates dramatically (seizures, multiple hospital stays, immobility, confusion, more questions than answers). I'm preoccupied with grief and disillusionment instead of holiday cheer. I thank God for each and every opportunity to express love to Mom, and simultaneously agonize that her full-bodied living has been so diminished.

 
In the last two days of relative calm, a deep appreciation has surfaced in me for women who demonstrate the kind of life I want to live. The rawness of my heart has removed all inhibitions when it comes to love and recognition (no more secret-admiring. I'm going public).
 
Whether it's been years since we've seen one another or we've never actually met in person, I want you to know how much you mean to me.
 
Nancy, you continue to show me the power of making a life doing what you love.

 
Cami, your honesty and wise counsel are the balance bar I need while crossing life's high wire.

 
Carol, your humor, leadership, and refusal to accept negative self-descriptions make me smile til my cheeks hurt.
 
Alicia, you are an open window of beauty and tenderness.

 
Cary, I love your bold vibrancy in life and in art.

 
I am grateful for every intersection where our paths cross.

I see several common threads among you:
  1. Full acceptance of life in all its shades of celebration and sorrow.
  2. Joy in your place in the world.
  3. Humility combined with extravagant generosity as you share yourself with the people around you.
Thank you for all the ways you exemplify the woman I want to be.
 
Love,

 
Emily