Should you happen to wander onto social media on this International Women’s Day, you’re likely to see a familiar quote repeated in caption after caption: “Here’s to strong women. May we know them, may we raise them. May we be them.”
And as fond as we are of this passage, which Michelle Obama once penned to Lily Collins after the release of the actress’ 2017 memoir, it’d be nice if it came with a few instructions. Because there’s no one-size-fits-all guidebook to bringing up well-adjusted, passionate, intelligent, strong AF women, just the overwhelming feeling that you don’t want to eff it up.
Even the past FLOTUS herself admits to feeling moments of uncertainty when it came to raising Malia, 24, and Sasha, 21, with husband Barack Obama.
“As a parent, you are always fighting your own desperation not to fail at the job you’ve been given,” she wrote in her 2022 book, The Light We Carry. “There are whole industries built to feed and capitalize on this very desperation, from baby brain gyms and ergonomic strollers to SAT coaches. It’s like a hole that can’t ever be filled.”