OPINION

GOOD MORNING: Celebrating Women's History Month with local women

Jerrie Whiteley
Herald Democrat
Jerrie Whiteley / Herald Democrat

Though I am looking forward to the warmth of April, I am not looking forward to the month of March ending. This month, I have endeavored to introduce our readers to some local women in honor of Women's History Month and there are just so many more women left to cover that a I feel like I have just barely scratched the surface.

If this past year has taught us anything, it is that women are essential in a way that we might not have really concentrated on before. I am thinking about all of the moms who worked from home while simultaneously helping their children deal with online school and worrying about their parents locked in either at their own homes or in long-term care facilities.

Of course, men have dealt with those things too. But, no one can deny that women are traditionally seen as the major caregivers in our society. 

As I have approached local women about features on them, I have been blown away by their humility. "I don't know why you would want to write about me," is something that I heard often even from people who daily amaze me. 

I have been so blown away for the past year by the number of women who have stepped up in so many ways to help lead our communities through this pandemic from the teachers who have switched their methods of instructions and sanitized classrooms like scientists to nurses who worked triple shifts with patients who were dying without the love and support of their families. Those same nurses then went home and provided comfort and care to their own families. 

Then there are women who have been elected to various positions in our county who have worked hard to make sure that everything that could be done to help our county through this pandemic is being done. And there are the women who work in appointed positions who have worked insane numbers of hours trying to make sure that the needs of local people were met during the pandemic. And don't even get me started on the women in the social services roles and at local nonprofits who have battled through this year to keep those organizations above water while keeping both their staffs and the people they serve safe.

One hundred years from now, students in schools might not study the individual women in Grayson County and the way that they pulled out county through a pandemic, but I am betting and praying, that they do study the impact that women all over this country had on the situation. I think it might be on par with the Rosie the Riveter type of phenomena from World War II. 

Only this time, many, many women returned to their homes and proved that they are not only places to raise families, but also places from which to educate and to run businesses both small and large.  This time instead of being dressed in work overalls, the icons will be dressed in yoga pants and t-shirts proving that what a woman wears and how she looks really has very little to do with what she can accomplish. Now there is a giant step forward for women all over the world.