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‘We’re women because we’re strong, smart and beautiful,’- Tara, 8.

‘The ability to both care about ourselves and everyone around us, to show emotion and to strive for our goals despite all the things that stand in our way,’- Megan, 19.

‘What makes us women is we are all seeing, all hearing and always there to be counted and understood.  We give our all through thick and thin and will be there to the end,’- Sile, 49.

I don’t think it is necessarily being the gender of female that makes us women at all. It took many of us a long time to realize this, and some go all their lives without understanding it. It would be so much easier if there was just a set list of characteristics, something more mathematical that makes us women. A certain hair and eye colour, a certain walk and talk, certain interests and hobbies that could define us as women, but we cannot be defined because we are fluid.

We are women and we aren’t stereotypes and we don’t commit to being just one thing, because we don’t need to. We are not just this one thing, we can be everything we want to be. We know we are great but we don’t know what makes us great. Even if we did, we are too humble and too stubborn to accept any of the reasons. Maybe there isn’t a single reason, or maybe there’s a non-existent figure.

It’s the twinkle in our eyes when we talk about the things we love or look at the one we love. It’s how easy we can make it to read parts of our minds while still having a million things on it that we’ll never show or tell.  It’s the books and movies and songs that we cry over. It’s how despite how long the night is and what it entails, we always believe in the brightness of the morning. It’s how we always know the truth and always know what’s best.

These are the components of being a woman and there is no greater secret than that. The most wonderful and horrific thing about being a woman is that we feel everything or we feel nothing at all. We have the power to make anyone feel anything we want them to.We are doctors saving vulnerable people’s lives and we are cleaners sorting out everyone else’s messes. We are writers and we are readers and we are observers. We are struggling students or maybe we are just struggling in general. We are admirable because we manage to recover from both.

We can build houses and homes, and make something out of nothing. We can paint with the blood we manage to draw from a stone. We can love and destroy or make and break someone. We look in mirrors and look through windows and let the reflection of both help us. It’s how we celebrate each other, how we represent and reproduce and how we never give up despite how hard things get. The one thing all of us have in common is being a woman and that’s more than enough to unite us.

So, what do you think makes us women? Share your thoughts through any of our social media, with the hashtag #whatmakesuswomen.

Marketing and Publicity Director for Her Campus Chapter in University of Limerick
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