For Us // From Us

By Kristina Ching

Although International Women’s Day wasn’t today, I set out to do something to remind myself and those around me that we can be empowered everyday of our lives //

I believe strongly in learning from our mistakes, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t wish I could have had some of this guidance years ago. I asked what advice we would give to our younger selves, and all the answers I received were vastly different. They truly represent the diversity and strength of the amazing women around us. We can only grow from here //

I then challenged people to explain what it meant to them to be a woman, completely aware of how difficult it may be to articulate. The responses illustrated to me how deeply we are all affected by our own experiences, and how they shape our perceptions of ourselves. We are not confined by any definitions of womanhood. We own our own existence //

My goal was to compile honest truths from genuine women and girls, and do it beautifully. I wanted to inspire others by sharing the sentiments of the same women and girls who have inspired me my entire life. These responses are just a tiny fraction of who we are, but regardless, I hope you can find something you relate to. I hope the impact of their words reaches much farther than themselves. They are for us, from us //

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