When I think of all the world famous women who inspired, influenced and made me dream. A few names automatically come up. Whether it was as school girls helping me move on with my adolescent life, or as a young adult dealing with work, heartbreaks, family, health and other issues. Here are a few women who have never ceased to amaze me and I’ve turned time and again to them for motivation, drive and the ability to keeping holding on.
1. Enid Blyton: She’s one of the first women authors that I’ve come to love dearly over the years. My first introduction to her was Noddy. But it was only when a classmate of mine who passed on a copy of The Magic Faraway Tree to me from the school library, that I actually started loving her books in all sincerity. After that, I read up on almost all of her works my favorite being Malory Towers and Mr. Pink Whistle. I owe much of my childhood daydreams conjured up by the stories described in her books. Because of her I believed in fairies, pixies, gnomes, elves and dwarfs which isn’t really a bad thing.
2. The Spice Girls: Any little girl growing up in the mid to late 90’s wouldn’t be completely free from the overwhelming influence of The Spice Girls. Even though the pop group eventually split up, the way they took over the world and the hearts of little girls everywhere was mind boggling. I wanted to look like them, sing like them. I aspired as a twelve year kid to be just like them. I still remember back then, there wasn’t a girl in the convent that didn’t know the full lyrics and dance moves of Wannabe. Hit rewind on the Sony Walkman and we would sing along to Posh, Baby, Ginger, Sporty and Scary Spice going “If you wannabe my lover/you gotta get with my friends/making love forever/ friendship never ends” The Spice Girls more than anything else taught me to dream.
3. Oprah Winfrey: The Oprah Winfrey show must be one of the earliest chat shows that I used to watch as a child. Thanks to my mom and dad, though I barely understood most of the issues discussed in the show. To me now Oprah is one lady who redefines the look of a successful woman. Who proves to you that you don’t have to be of a certain size and color or to have a man to be successful and powerful in life. She is one role model whom all girls can look up to, who fought through personal hardships to come out courageous. Definitely one of the most influential people in the world. Oprah taught me to be brave and work hard.
4. Scarlet O’Hara: Though she’s only a fictitious character in a book, yet she is unforgettable. Margret Mitchell breathes life and vivacity into the main protagonist of this classic American romance. Gone With the Winds is a book which is on the must read list of any good book reader. The characters have a fan base all of their own and the book has also been turned into a cult movie starring Vivian Leigh and Clark Gable. Ever since I read the book at sixteen I’ve wanted to be Scarlet O’Hara being romanced by Rhett Butler. Scarlet O’Hara taught me to be seize the moment and live out your life.
5. Sylvia Plath: Best known for her book which transcends generations, The Bell Jar. It tells the story of a young woman who gets a job as an intern at a top magazine in New York City which is supposed to be the envy of many of her contemporaries. However, she becomes depressed and feels trapped as in a bell jar gradually breaking down and committing suicide. The story has many parallels with Plath’s own life and is autobiographical in that sense. A poet, lover, mother, wife, short story writer; there is no other person or entity that has had such a profound influence on me as Sylvia Plath has had. She has taught me to think, feel and understand myself better.