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International Women's Day - a Western woman's luxury?

I was born in a western country.
My father is an engineer, my mother stayed at home to raise three kids.
I ate three balanced meals a day, every day.
I went to school.
I learned to read and write.
I wore braces.
I went to high school and university.
I failed, and tried again.
I had boyfriends.
I travelled, I got drunk, I took drugs.
I straightened myself out and tried again.
I got married and divorced.
I found a job.
I emigrated.
I went to study some more.

I buy books.
I go to the cinema.
I eat in restaurants.
I travel to foreign countries just for fun.
I buy clothes, some for winter, others for summer.
I throw away those I don’t like anymore.

I say what I think.
I have choices.
I weigh my options.
I don’t settle for second best.
I am ambitious, I have dreams, I want more.

International Women’s Day is a western woman’s luxury, defined by a white, middle-class Western woman’s values.  For billions of women throughout developing countries – from Pakistan to Mali – tomorrow will just be another day.

As we celebrate – our right to vote, our right to study, to work, the pill, career choices, postponed motherhood and IVF, equal-pay-for-equal-work, subsidised crèches and boardroom quotas, maybe we should also take a moment to reconsider our measure ofopportunity, our definition of success. And maybe, after 100 years, we should reconsider our definition of feminism and emancipation to reflect the values, beliefs, hopes and dreams of those beyond the boundaries of our own culture.

Think different.