Women I Want My Daughter to Admire

I didn't watch the VMAs last night (we don't have cable) but I saw Miley's performance on YouTube, and mostly, it just depressed me. I don't want to get into it, I don't want to dissect what her performance means, or if it is right/wrong, or any of it. It depressed me because when her songs come on the radio my five year old wants to hear them because it is a "girl singer". She obviously has no idea what Miley's performance might mean, but if she HAD seen it, how would I explain it? How would I explain who Miley Cyrus even IS? Or why so many girls DO idolize her? I don't know how. Instead, I want to put together a little list of some pretty cool girls and women that I do want to introduce her to. So when any of these kinds of Miley Cyrus twerking type situations arise, I will instead point her attention to one of these inspiring, positive women. These are but just a few of the amazing women in the world. Feel free to add your own inspiring role models in the comment section. Rock on ladies. British primatologist, Jane Goodall, British primatologist, ethologist, anthropologist, and UN Messenger of Peace

Bethany Hamilton, professional surfer, survivor, total badass

One of the few female conductors, Marin was the first woman to wield the baton at a major US orchestra when she became music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in 2007

Ellen MacArthur, Sailor who completed solo circumnavigation race, the Vendée Globe, then broke the non-stop solo world record

Brittany Wegner, 17, won the Google Science Fair grand prize with her "Global Neural Network Cloud Service for Breast Cancer". Designed to noninvasively diagnose malignant cancerous tumors, it successfully detected over 99% of malignant breast tumors in a test set.

Single mother J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series, inspiring young readers and improving literacy levels, built one of the top-earning literary franchises ever

Audrey Hepburn, mother, actress, humanitarian, and all around class act

High jumper Alice Coachman, first female African American athlete to win an Olympic gold medal, has been inducted into eight halls of fame.

Temple Grandin, doctor of animal science and professor at Colorado State University, bestselling author, autistic activist, and consultant to the livestock industry on animal behavior. She also created the "hug box", a device to calm autistic children.

Frida Kahlo, Mexican artist

Licia Ronzulli, proud baby wearing member of the European Parliament who brought daughter Vittoria to a plenary session of the European Parliament as a symbolic gesture to reclaim more rights for women in reconciling work and family life.

Amy Poehler

Kristen Wiig

Tina Fey, actress, comedian, writer and producer and author of the hilarious "Prayer for my Daughter" reprinted below...

First, Lord: No tattoos. May neither Chinese symbol for truth nor Winnie-the-Pooh holding the FSU logo stain her tender haunches.

May she be Beautiful but not Damaged, for it’s the Damage that draws the creepy soccer coach’s eye, not the Beauty.

When the Crystal Meth is offered, May she remember the parents who cut her grapes in half And stick with Beer.

Guide her, protect her. When crossing the street, stepping onto boats, swimming in the ocean, swimming in pools, walking near pools, standing on the subway platform, crossing 86th Street, stepping off of boats, using mall restrooms, getting on and off escalators, driving on country roads while arguing, leaning on large windows, walking in parking lots, riding Ferris wheels, roller-coasters, log flumes, or anything called “Hell Drop,” “Tower of Torture,” or “The Death Spiral Rock ‘N Zero G Roll featuring Aerosmith,” and standing on any kind of balcony ever, anywhere, at any age.

Lead her away from Acting but not all the way to Finance. Something where she can make her own hours but still feel intellectually fulfilled and get outside sometimes And not have to wear high heels.

What would that be, Lord? Architecture? Midwifery? Golf course design? I’m asking You, because if I knew, I’d be doing it, Youdammit.

May she play the Drums to the fiery rhythm of her Own Heart with the sinewy strength of her Own Arms, so she need Not Lie With Drummers.

Grant her a Rough Patch from twelve to seventeen. Let her draw horses and be interested in Barbies for much too long, For childhood is short – a Tiger Flower blooming Magenta for one day – And adulthood is long and dry-humping in cars will wait.

O Lord, break the Internet forever, That she may be spared the misspelled invective of her peers And the online marketing campaign for Rape Hostel V: Girls Just Wanna Get Stabbed.

And when she one day turns on me and calls me a Bitch in front of Hollister, Give me the strength, Lord, to yank her directly into a cab in front of her friends, For I will not have that Shit. I will not have it.

And should she choose to be a Mother one day, be my eyes, Lord, that I may see her, lying on a blanket on the floor at 4:50 A.M., all-at-once exhausted, bored, and in love with the little creature whose poop is leaking up its back.

“My mother did this for me once,” she will realize as she cleans feces off her baby’s neck. “My mother did this for me.” And the delayed gratitude will wash over her as it does each generation and she will make a Mental Note to call me. And she will forget. But I’ll know, because I peeped it with Your God eyes.

Amen.

-Tina Fey