The year so far, has been a bit of an annus horribilis. Even in my school days of yesteryear, some Latin terms seemed to encapsulate just what was needed to be said without too many words or drama. As someone who comes from a Jamaican migrant family with a very strong work ethic, it can be sometimes challenging to remember that life happens alongside the day (and often night) job. However, over the past two months, I have had a stark reminder of the fragility of life and how the people and items that we hold dear and/or take for granted can be taken away with little or no notice. The death of a close relative and dealing with the aftermath, alongside a major home intrusion, left me questioning many things I had taken for granted as well as quite physically and emotionally drained. I know only too well from my university teaching days that shock, denial, and anger are all normal when dealing with loss, grief and change. New beginnings and possibilities also emerge, but that seems a little way off right now.
I share these personal rather disturbing recent life episodes, not only as a cathartic moment (for myself), but also as a reminder of the sheer tenacity, ingenuity, playfulness, and loving support between us; young and older women alike. Witnessing female family members in their 20’s through to their 80’s gathering late into the night to plan how best to support a dying relative provided me with assurance that our matriarchal familial lineage remains strong. Numerous women have stepped forward to offer me support during these past months... I am fortunate to have women who have remained steadfast on my life’s bumpy journey for more than 40 years.
International Women’s Day 2022 provides a global platform to recognise phenomenal women (known and unknown to the wider world) and share deep appreciation and gratitude. So, to all my ‘sistren’ near and far; many of whom have been helped me realise personal and professional dreams and ambitions whilst also offering a strong shoulder to lean on when life happens. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.