Six Female-Centric Celebrations to Mark on Your Calendar for 2019
I know we've just finished the holiday time of year for many, but that won't stop me from seeking out new, upcoming celebrations, especially those which celebrate my gender. And those remain a bit too far and between for my tastes. Indeed, many don't think much beyond Mother’s Day — and at best, Women’s History Month too — when asked to name a female-centered holiday.
Still, every year, myriad celebrations and days of remembrance help us honor those among us who want a break from traditional holidays, many of which are rooted in patriarchy. Mark these events down on your calendar so you can make 2019 a year of recognizing the incredible contributions women and those of diverse backgrounds make to society every day!
Third Annual Women's March
I kick my year off right by protesting the shoddy treatment women, people of color, members of the LGBTQ+ community and disabled individuals receive as we struggle to survive the current administration. January 19, 2019 marks the third annual Women's March, and darn straight I will design a sign and join in the action!
Each of us has our own reason for marching, anything from access to affordable healthcare, particularly reproductive care, to the pay disparity that women still face in the workplace to the way ICE throws babies into concentration camps at our southern border. You could probably make a Wheel of Fortune-style spinner filled with Trump administration policies that have harmed women and others who don't fall into the cis, straight and white male paradigm.
The Day of Silence
Members of the LGBTQ+ community and their allies still enrolled in school at any level can draw attention to the way members of this community have long been silenced in our culture. Simply vow not to speak on April 12. Being both bisexual and an introvert, I really relish the idea of this holiday even though I’m not in school anymore.
If you think you have trouble discerning real news from fake these days, imagine what it was like when your only news source came delivered to you via pony! Juneteenth memorializes the day that slaves in Texas finally got the message that they were free — it only took them two and a half years to learn about the Emancipation Proclamation.
Many Juneteenth celebrations blend barbecues and family gatherings. Juneteenth reminds us to take care to learn from our history lest we risk repeating it.
International Day of the Girl
October 11, 2019 marks the International Day of the Girl. Here, we have a chance to celebrate the sacrifices women around the globe have made to bring about greater equality.
As the International Day of the Girl reminds us that investing in girls and teaching them useful job skills leads to financial freedom in their adulthood, I enjoy celebrating this holiday by donating to various charitable organizations that subsidize the education of girls growing up in impoverished regions of the globe.
International Day of Disabled Persons
This day focuses upon helping men and women with disabilities alike, but I've included it here to support other women like me who struggle with aphysical or mental health issue.
Indeed, I feel that the day's dedication supporting those with visible or invisible health challenges rings particularly true in the case of women, as nearly every woman I know, including myself, has had a doctor dismiss her serious health concerns as being “in her head.” This day brings awareness to what we as a society should do to expand inclusiveness to all regardless of handicap.
The celebration of the winter solstice among Wiccans and Pagans refers to the triumph of life over death and the return of the sun. This marks my favorite celebration not just because the days once more begin to lengthen, but also because, as opposed to the majority of religions with a patriarchal hierarchy, Wicca holds women in equal esteem with men. Never have Wiccans cited their faith as a reason to deny healthcare to anyone!
Women deserve far more respect than they receive in our society. So feel free to brag about your ability to nurture new life and bleed for five days without dying. Let's make 2019 the year we celebrate women, not just during Women's History Month, but all year long!
Article by Kate Harveston