Yesterday I met a woman.
This woman was me in many ways, except for the reasons she wasn’t.
She was a woman who had to survive many painful obstacles; prostitution, abandonment, unemployment, living on the streets, and many other social ills.
Our struggles differ, but our desire to overcome them is the same.
I saw something in her: a stranger I have never met before and will probably never meet again.
I saw a fighting spirit.
Things I thought I had lost in myself, but her yellow-stained eyes reflected it when I looked at her.
This woman stood before me with joy, a smile, and hope in her heart.
Like many others, she had to sacrifice a part of herself to get through life and reach this point, where she stood in front of me with a smile so broad I couldn’t help but smile too.
She speaks about the life she used to live without shame and her life now with pride. She embraces every challenge she has endured to get to where she is today.
We don’t share the same skin colour or the same mother tongue.
We don’t have the same economic standing or have the same employment status.
We don’t enjoy the same opportunities or possibilities nor are we the same age or grew up the same way.
But it is precisely those differences that make us the same.
The spirit of a warrior woman, one who doesn’t give up.
One who doesn’t have much but still gives.
Someone who doesn’t know it all but continues to learn.
This woman that I met yesterday;
A loved one.
This woman is me.
This woman is you.
She is all of us.
This post was orginally written and published in June 2018