Poem | Even Strong Women Need a Space

Kamala P. Tamirisa, MD, FACC

Even Strong Women Need a Space.

From the Physicians in us.
Donning the white coat comes with responsibility.
While uplifting, it is heavy with moral liability.
Adeptly we carry the routine of unpredictability.
Roller coaster of gratitude, aggressions, and vulnerability.
Judge us not when we care enough and express for reform.
Just because we voice for empathy and equality, we are not "weak."

From the Nurses in us.
We return to wards dawn or dusk, with grace.
Meticulous with tests, vitals, and medications.
We try not to let fatigue hinder our service-passion.
Pain or loss, we are the angels of endless compassion.
Judge us not when we are on the brink of breakdown.
We deserve to be appreciated and not undervalued.

From those looking up.
Fortune decided not to shine on our dreams.
Shut us out of network, behind closed doors.
Aloof in the corner of life – no name or fame.
Goals and accolades are just a distant stardom.
Judge us not as an obscure and irrelevant existence.
Understand that our time and chance haven't happened yet.

From those at the top.
Built tough to rise above, and made an identity.
Iron gates of misogyny we challenged, with integrity.
Often, our assiduous decisions faced a ridicule,
Know that we sacrificed much to reach the pinnacle.
Judge us not as bossy, or manipulative snobs.
It didn't happen overnight; envied against hurts.

For those who are abused.
Expected basic contentment from life, like all.
Alas! Luck turned its back on us all.
Kindness left our side and invited cruelty.
Fear, scars, tears, and shame defined our destiny.
Judge us not as stupid, "had a choice" or "should've compromised."
Your dismissal of our testimonies steals our very chance to survive.

For those who are "different."
Hijab, saris or "foreign" languages, accents.
Our skin color with varied tones, many shades.
We are too lean or too fat; not "perfect."
Our choices and interests might not fit the "norm."
Judge us not with awkward stares, prejudiced questions.
Implicit biases perpetuate insecurity, and social injustices.

From all of us.
We carry responsibilities with broad shoulders.
Stand balanced on the see-saw of life's moments.
Ride the swing of self-doubt and self-reliance.
No doubt we are all strong, but please allow space.
Judge us by the standards of inclusivity, kindness and humanity.
Embrace imperfections, differences, complement each other towards unity.
#Togetherness #Love #Peace #Lift
Happy International Women's Day!

By Kamala Tamirisa, MD, FACC