Scientists, artists, athletes… and badasses

Courtesy of Soy Niña

Six days left to go, and today I want to celebrate what yesterday’s post was supposed to be about (until current events took things in a slightly deeper, darker direction). Really, it’s just a sunnier side of the same street: the power of Costa Rica’s women.

The bras in this house were already getting a little nervous at the start of this past year. As I’ve written about quite a bit, recent events had driven my feminism to a new level. The election of a president who boasted about sexual assault. Facing conundrums in my work as a journalist that unveiled a fiery core I hadn’t known I had. My first experience having men talk around me in a meeting I was running, for an organization I directed, as if I wasn’t there.

But what really fired me up was, during this past year, seeing the stories of brilliance and bravery all around me. I barely had to look outside my field of vision to be gobsmacked by excellence. Women’s soccer players stepping up during the pandemic. Environmental advocates Christiana Figueres and Melania Guerra. Tomorrow’s leaders on the rise at Soy Niña. A brave doctor and a whole bookful of other rebel girls. The list goes on and on.

I think my epilogue to yesterday’s post on the horrible murders of women in Costa Rica is this: when those deep waters and currents of sexism are too much, one way we can rise into the air above and take a long breath of fresh air is simply to fix our sights on these endless sources of inspiration. They aren’t just a demonstration of why we must curb this violence: they are the pathway out of it. Whether not they’re directly engaged in women’s rights, they’re showing women, girls, boys and men what womanhood really means. From a lab or a stage or a running track, they’re making us safer.

Investing in their talents is perhaps the surest solution we have.

Featured image from Soy Niña.

I’m a writer in San José, Costa Rica, on a year-long quest to share daily posts on inspiring people, places and ideas from my adopted home as a kind of tonic during a rough time in the world. Sign up (top right of this page) to receive a little dose of inspiration every weekday in your mailbox; tell a friend; check out past posts; learn how to join my Overwhelmed Writers’ League, every Saturday at 1 pm EST; and please connect with me on Instagram or FacebookTo learn more about how to support Costa Rica during the crisis, visit my COVID-19 section – or for ways to enjoy Costa Rica from afar, visit Virtual Costa Rica.


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