Five Women who inspired me

Today is International Women’s Day.

I’m actually not a huge fan, but celebrating some of the women that have inspired me during my life is something that I can do!

But I am going to exclude my immediate family...because they would all inspire me in different ways, and you mostly know why by now..

So here goes.

My Dad's Cousin


When I was growing up all the women I knew well were mothers and housewives. They actually seemed very happy with their lives, but I was always restless and adventurous and couldn’t imagine living in the home for years on end.  But one woman was different, she was my Dad's cousin.  Her life seemed almost impossibly glamorous to me as a child in the 1960s.  She was a bank manager who travelled all over the world in her spare time, visiting places like China, decades before the country was opened up to tourists.  Now in her 80s, she is still invited to give talks to local groups about her adventures.  Sadly, I don't know her nearly as well as I would like, but her life has always inspired me.

Irish Mammy


I was looking for something to do after I lost my job in 2008, and a chance plea on Irish parenting site rollercoaster.ie led to a meeting with Irish Mammy (Treasa Dovander) and offer my services to PACUB her newly established group to fight cuts to child benefit.

Within 6 months we were influencing party political policies that are still impacting on Government decisions today.  I'd like to include every one of the group, but Treasa was the tireless leader, only taking a week or so off to have a baby.  She never showed any fear or doubt, and had the energy of six ordinary people.

Some of the inspirational women in the PACUB group, and me.

Marie O'Donoghue


Until the 1990s children with disabilities could be excluded from the Irish Educational System, but that all changed thanks to a landmark case taken by Marie O'Donoghue against the State on behalf of her severely disabled son Paul, who sadly passed away recently.  That case and the organisation that she established for children with severe and profound disabilities helped me greatly in my fight to get an education for Smiley

Éowyn


Well I couldn't ignore my Lord of the Rings obsession completely now could I?  Éowyn was the character that I identified with the most.  She tried to do the right thing even when she found it really hard, she made mistakes, falling in love with the wrong person, but learned from them, she was brave, she was kind and ultimately she turned her back on battles and became a healer.  What's not to like?

And apparently not everyone has seen the movie.  Really?  So here is her most famous moment, there were cheers in cinema...


Everywoman


The quiet women of the world, the ones who just get on with being mothers, helpers, healers, who cradle their poorly children even when their own tiredness makes them feel sick with lack of sleep, who walk miles under a hot sun to fetch water for their families, who work all day and sit with dying relatives all night to make sure they don't leave this world alone. The mothers who are thanked at awards ceremonies, but no-one remembers to give them a name.  Those are the women that I admire the most. They don’t get obituaries written about them, or awards or biographies, but they make a real difference everyday in the lives of all of those whom they love and care about.

I may not have admired them so much when I was a child (see above), but I certainly do now xx


Check out Listography for more inspiring women.


29 comments:

  1. What a brilliant list
    I read your post about IWD- it is a fantastic post but I can't see how you conclude that IWD is pointless as a result! I would conclude THE OPPOSITE! It is a day to shout about the things you speak of, and I see this shouting happening,which is awesome .
    Anyway,pleased to meet you and your blog!

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    1. Pleased to meet you too! And thank you for the opportunity to share x

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  2. I adore your list. What gorgeous insights into your wider family and I am so glad to hear about pioneering changes made through bravery, determination and hard work. A great shout out to the unnamed mothers thanked too - you are so right. I have an ambition to be in a photo with my children on Mother's Day - haven't managed it so far but there's hope!

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    1. I had to get in a professional photographer in oder to get a photo of me and my kids, with all of us looking at the camera and smiling. It was worth it though!

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  3. Susan (Eastendmom)March 8, 2014 at 10:59 PM

    This post is extremely moving; I actually teared up reading about Everywoman. I couldn't agree more.

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  4. Hugs. Everywoman should be an inspiration. But I agree with you that IWD doesn't do much. Do we have an International Men's Day? Or an International People's Day? Just the fact that we have to stand up and shout about all we do every day seems wrong to me. Women are women and men are men and people are people. There is good and bad in everyone. (OK, starting to hum "Ebony and Ivory" at this point so I'll stop.)

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  5. ahhhhhhhhh! I had a long answer written but because the page had been open too long, the internet swallowed it. Basically, I was quoting the great Sir Paul by saying "There is good and bad in everyone" and IWD doesn't make a lot of sense to me w/o International Men's Day, etc. People are people first. Ah well, it was a good read!

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    1. Sorry about the long answer, but I got two anyway :) Blogger seems to be doing very strange things these days! Glad you enjoyed it x

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  6. Love this list - I'm totally behind celebrating the ordinary women among us who rise to the challenge and do extraordinary things. And the everywomen who also do extraordinary things but no one usually notices. I also like that you have personal connection to each woman.

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    1. So many people who should be celebrated, never are x

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  7. What a beautiful List, I have never watched LOTR (sorry) but Éowyn sounds a great character someone I could relate to also x

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  8. A great post and a wonderful insight into you and your influences. Off to think of mine now!

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  9. some fab women ...new to me love your last one best!!!

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  10. Every post I read of yours makes me love you a little bit more - and this one is no exception. Wonderful wonderful list - so glad you joined in.

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  11. Great list. Particularly like the 'Everywoman' accolade, and Irish Mammy too. of course ;-) Yet again I missed this, I promised myself after last year that I would do it next time. And my list includes family members too! xx Jazzy

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    1. Such a pity, I'd love to read your list xx

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  12. Wonderful post, such incredible women. And I agree with your everywoman nomination too. Each of us who glue families and society together, support and love and help. Thank you
    H x

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  13. Well I didn't see that last one coming, but how perfect. Mich x

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  14. I love Women's day, when I was small that was the day when we gave our mammies presents and did school concerts for them. I refuse to have it moved to Mother's day, which my Irish husband and my children insist on. So every year on the 8th of March there is a silent stand-off between me and him :-) At the end myself and my Bulgarian female friends either go out for a drink or send pictures of flowers to each other on fb. By the way, in Eastern Europe on this day men give a flower not only to their wives and mothers but female colleagues, teachers etc. It is a small gesture of appreciation that women carry the world on their shoulders. Yes, everywoman, this is your day.

    Truf

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    1. Thanks so much for commenting again Truf :) It is indeed everywoman's day :)

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  15. Beautiful post Candi, love that you have included your family. Think the last one is spot on xx

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