All STEM aside, it’s just as important to talk about the self-esteem that creates the self-image of the women partaking in these careers.
It takes a great deal of endurance to live this life as a scientista—the constant underestimation from society, men and ourselves, the self-hate we sometimes believe we deserve, the unrealistic expectations from the media that don’t even deserve our attention.
As I’m writing, I only turned 18 a few full moons ago, but I know the struggle. From the minimal irks—like not being able to play sports with the boys, or doing just as much work as any of them yet not being taken seriously—to the really unfortunate problems—like being in an abusive relationship and not exactly knowing how leave it – I encountered it all during my formative years.
Worst of all was feeling powerless about my life in general. It’s incredible what a lack of self-esteem does to a female: Whether it was cheating myself out of opportunities or having my own pity parties, it seemed like death was calling me. I realized I was snoozing as my life passed by, but then I woke up.
I looked at myself. I saw my spirit as a scab with an infected wound under it. Like many other women trying to find themselves, I had to remove that scab, despite how painful it was. I had to forgive myself and others. I let go of the emotional baggage because it crowded my space. I won’t fluff this up and say temptation doesn’t show its familiar face; it always does, and it always will. However, I always manage to put feelings aside, because I know who I am.
It’s not enough to just tell young females they’re beautiful. Contrary to popular belief, knowing that you’re beautiful can only get you so far in this life. Women need to know from a very early age that this life will be a fight, and you can deal with it by empowering yourself and making this life work for you, or you can back down.
Every female must be shown that there is another path other than the one of abuse, hate and inferiority. It is our responsibility as women to empower our sisters, young and old, to achieve greatness. To the women reading these words, I write: please believe me when I say not only are you beautiful; you’re intelligent, respectable, strong, important, and deserve to give yourself credit for all that you’ve done and been through.
We females are queens. Don’t ever let anyone tell you differently. Queens not in the sense of superiority, but in the sense of having beauty inside and out and knowing you have the power to create a better life for yourself. Carry that with you; know that you are in control and you do have the power to change your life and the lives of others. Love yourself. It is only then that you can see your true potential.