17/02/2014 08:14 GMT | Updated 18/04/2014 06:59 BST

Celebrating Women's Voices and Bodies

I remember the first time I heard Lorde's song Royals on the radio, before anyone knew who she was; I said to myself, This woman is going to be famous.

When I learned she was only seventeen, I was blown away.

Seeing such talent in young women usually gives me two mixed reactions: 1) I feel like anything is possible and there is still great art and expression to be made by others and myself, and 2) I feel like I am way too old to have any impact in the world with my creativity and I might as well roll over and let the young people talk to the world.

Then I sober up emotionally and intellectually and realise there's room for all our voices. The "Lordes" and the "me's."

It's imperative to hear what the youth, who are experiencing modern culture upfront and loud make of it, but it's also important to hear the balance and hindsight of our older voices.



The ones who have actually been saying "I'm kind of over gettin' told to throw my hands up in the air" for years or even decades.

Witnessing a seventeen-year-old taking risks and feeling like she has the right and audacity to say what's she sick of in popular culture, then maybe I can use her as inspiration to voice my own upset as a forty-two-year-old.

I definitely am over being told to throw my hands up in the air. I'm tired of being told to always be happy and carefree. But what I'm really over is being told what I'm supposed to be and look like in so many hidden and not-so-hidden messages.

And it's that special time of year again when the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition makes its debut on newsstands, showing us again that no matter what empowering things we shout about women's bodies, the ones that get celebrated publicly are the ones that fit a certain beauty ideal.

But you know what? I'm kind of over getting told to push my boobs up in the air.

So there.

I'm kind of over trying to live up to our culture's beauty ideal, of worrying whether my thighs are thundering, of checking my butt in the mirror before I walk out the door.

I'm kind of over big boobs being worshipped.

That's it.

I'm changing my life today.

I will no longer care what other people think.

I will live my life the way I choose and have no regrets.

I will teach yoga and writing in my own unique way, which will not please everyone, but I don't care. I'm an awesome teacher and I make a difference in many people's lives.

I will dance as if no one is watching, even when someone is.

I will sing loud even if people cover their ears.

I will write about the issues important to me.

I'm done with playing small in life. Except when it comes to my breasts. They are small and they are beautiful.

I'm done with never feeling good enough. I'm done with getting down on myself for not being perfect.

Today I take my stand.

I am freaking awesome just the way I am.

Some people will love me and some will hate me. It doesn't matter either way.

I feel it. I know what's important. Just like most of the women in our culture know it sometimes.

But I want to live it. Every day.

I AM beautiful just the way I am. I am worthy. I am important.

I hereby give myself permission to love my body, my life and myself. Little boobs and all.

Won't you join me and say enough is enough already?

What are YOU over? What is holding you back from fully loving yourself and your life? Turn it on its head.

Let's take back our self-esteem and our lives.

Let's proudly show the world the women that we are. The women that should be- and can be- celebrated.

But we need to make that choice before anyone else will make it for us. We need to demand the world change to reflect what we want to see.

I'm old enough and wise enough now to not be too proud to admit that I need to remind myself every day that I am worthy. That I am freaking awesome just the way I am. And so are you.

Let's be the women who make that change of knowing and representing, so that our daughters won't need to remind themselves of their own inherent beauty and power ever.