I’m a firm believer that things are sent to try us, to test us, and to make us stronger. Years ago, I found this difficult to deal with – God knows I’ve been sent my fair share to try me and I have repeatedly picked myself up, dusted myself off and begun again over the years.
2016 has not been without it’s share of trials and we’re only four months in. I’ve moved cities, uprooted my life to the other side of the country, and a relationship has ended that I was very much emotionally invested in. Understandably the latter, especially happening so soon into my moving to London, has been possibly the hardest thing to deal with so far. Having your main source of comfort in a new place disappear when you’re least expecting it can leave you feeling nothing short of bereft. But most importantly, I am ok.
2016 is the year I’m learning truly what it means to be a strong, independent woman. Women in this day and age are subjected to so much – we’re expected to be the patriarchal stereotype of the ideal housewife, she cooks, cleans, manages a house and raises a family, is the perfect wife or girlfriend and doesn’t misbehave. At the same time we’re also expected to be perfectly groomed, toned, have the ‘perfect’ bikini body in order to attract a partner, hold down a successful career, be a princess in the streets and a porn star in the streets – it’s safe to say that we don’t exactly have the easiest hand dealt us.
(I feel like here I should add a disclaimer – the above was a broad generalisation, of course I know this isn’t the opinion of every man or every woman, and certainly isn’t applicable to every relationship – I don’t want to alienate anyone or discriminate here.)
I am so pleased that in 2016 the media is filled to the brim with strong women. You only have to open a magazine these days and you can find an article about how it doesn’t matter if you’re going it alone, if you don’t fit into the perfect stereotype. It’s more celebrated than ever to go your own way, forge your own path and most importantly find your voice – not just the voice that is expected of you.
I am so proud of the way I’ve overcome the struggles of this year. I have reinvented myself completely, I have broadened my mind through literature and learning, I have an absolutely fantastic job and I can finally see my career really going somewhere. I’m in a company that rewards loyalty and handwork in kind, and I am so grateful to the wonderful individuals that I am lucky enough to spend my working hours with. I am also so proud and grateful for my friends, every single day.
We have been through so much together and it’s only recently that I have been able to see what a real tribe we are. Unwavering support among groups of women isn’t always common, but for us there’s no competition, there’s no judging. We are all incredibly strong and inspiring individuals in our own right, forging our own paths in life and supporting each other through every single step, and this more than anything is what has shown me my own strength and has shown me how far I’ve really come.
I am strong. I am independent. And most importantly I’m proud of myself. I’m finally coming to terms with who I am as an individual, coming to terms with all the things I’ve gone through in the past that has shaped the individual I have become, and wow. Just wow. I don’t ever want to stop growing, stop learning, stop shaping myself and my future and I’m not going to let anyone stand in my way. I fully intend to be the ultimate #Girlboss in every sense of the word.
I’d love the whole blogging community to just stop for 10 minutes and reflect on what an amazingly powerful group of individuals we are. Look at what we’re doing! Look at what we’re shaping, the future we’re creating for ourselves and the generations that come along after. We’re full of not only strong women, but incredibly strong men as well, and its time we really made our voices heard. Lets use our platforms to inspire confidence and positivity, let’s put animosity and competition aside and celebrate each other’s successes from the smallest things to the largest. We’re living in such an exciting time, and it’s time to harness our skills, our talents, and our creativity and use it to shape a future for ourselves that we can be proud of.
Catch up with me by using the links below:
LJLV is now on Snapchat, hit a girl up @lucy_jlove
PS: I don’t normally do anything like this, and I’m not usually an advocate of asking for money but my beautiful Mum got diagnosed with a rare form of cancer two years ago, and this year she’s running the Manchester 10k to raise money in the hopes it will help fund research and find a cure.
It would mean the world to both me and her if she could reach her target of £150 or more, and every penny helps. If you’d like to donate, you can do so through Just Giving – click here