Yep, I said it! Let me start by introducing myself. My name is Alba Baratta née Panaccione commonly known as Tonina’s momma.

Now, the reason I wish there wasn’t an International Women’s Day is that would mean we would have FINALLY reached the goal of equal rights on the global scale. Unfortunately we’re not there yet. For those of us from the female gender who think that the struggle is over, let me enlighten you. We still have a 30% gap in pay equity with men, we’re still not advancing in leadership roles compared to men, we’re under-represented in politics, we still continue to be responsible for the majority of caregiving, we’re still being questioned on our legal rights and freedoms relating to reproduction and reproductive health and I can go on and on and on…

I’m a straight, married, retired professional, mother of two, vain and proud feminist! I’m still, to this day, shocked when I hear deragotory comments about feminism. Equality should not be controversial or undermined and yet it is. I participated in the women’s rights rallies during high school in the 1970’s and rebelled against the social norms at the time, all the while, knowing that the struggle was bigger than me! I was encouraged by the most wonderful of men, my Dad, inspired by my closeted feminist Mom and spurred on my biggest fan, my husband, to strive for my goals and DEMAND equal treatment, bad or good!

I would have wished that by now sexism and inequality would have been things of the past but they’re not! So my advice for all the women out there in the world :

DEMAND your basic rights so easily bestowed on men and not just quietly ask for them!!

It starts by knowing you are deserving! Fight on my intelligent, ambitious, capable, brave, assertive and awesome ladies and be examples that will inspire your children.

Love always and namaste!