Woman Crush Month is a month-long series by the girls of She Did What She Wanted
in celebration of Women’s History Month.
By Jess McGuire
I always feel in awe of others that are my age and doing amazing things. Laura Kenny is travelling the world and winning gold medals left, right and centre whilst I’m sat at home under a chocolate-smeared blanket watching reruns of Friends. My admiration for her and people like her is immense.
And that’s just to start.
For those of you who don’t know, Laura Kenny is an Olympic cyclist. She is Britain’s most successful female Olympian owning four gold medals as well as countless amounts of other medals and titles. After watching her race at Rio 2016 she became my personal highlight of the Olympics.
Every time the Olympics roll around I find myself obsessing over a different sport. During Beijing 2008 it was swimming. During London 2012 I spent night after night watching team after team play volleyball. During Rio 2016 it was cycling. Not just because the events were entertaining (and because Team GB are nothing short of incredible) but because of the sportsmanship that they displayed.
The highlight of the Olympics for me was seeing Laura Kenny win gold in her race and then turn in circles watching Jason Kenny do his race. She was there with him for every circuit, felt everything he felt and then beamed with pride as he crossed the finish line. She showed herself to be one of the most supportive, dedicated and down-to-earth people in the sporting world.
Working in a primary school I’ve learnt how important it is to be the kind of person you want the children to be – polite, kind, generous, forgiving, positive and hardworking. It’s especially important knowing that the types of women they’re discussing in the playground are not necessarily the type of women you want them to grow up to be. They don’t know enough about the women who aren’t controversial enough to make it onto the front pages. They don’t know enough about the women that are marking the world with good energy. They don’t know enough the women that put the hours in, commit themselves wholly to something, love what they do, and prove what it means to be a team player.
People like Laura Kenny should be household names. Not just because they are an inspiration to any young girls and women who want to follow in similar footsteps. Not just because she demonstrates that resilience and hard work pay off. Not just for being beautiful and cheerful and fun. But for just being, well…
For just doing what she does for the love of doing it.
For being graceful and modest and sweet.
So when the kids turn to me and say, ‘who do you admire the most?’ I say, ‘Laura Kenny.’
And I tell them exactly why.
She Did What She Wanted firmly believes there’s nothing better than women empowering other women, so when we found out March is Women’s History Month, we knew we needed to do something special. There are too many amazing women to fit into just thirty one days, but to do our best, we invited our contributors to write about the favorite women in their lives, and Woman Crush Month came to be. #WCM is the ultimate girl power party, and it’s all about women celebrating women and their achievements, and we personally can’t think of anything better than that.