Hello, there. My name is Jen, and I’m the “girl” in Girl, Unabashed. I’ve been writing for fun since I was about five, so I suppose it’s only natural that I would end up creating a blog–and to be honest, I’ve been thinking about starting one for roughly half a decade. Whenever I sat down to make it happen, though, none of my ideas ever seemed to coalesce. To have a blog worth reading, after all, one must have something worthwhile to blog about.
Then my husband made a comment that I couldn’t get out of my head. “One of the things that I really appreciate about you is that you never make a big deal about being the only woman present. You just show up and do your thing.”
Confession time: until he called it out, I hadn’t even noticed how much time I was spending in male-dominated activities. I have a degree in civil engineering and work in construction project management (both 8-30% female, depending on who you ask) so I’ve spent a fair amount of time as the only woman in the room or on the jobsite. Being the only female in the mountain biking group doesn’t even register – but after Anthony’s comment, I started paying more attention. Sure enough, the next group ride we went on had a wide range of men, from a 12 year old boy to a man in his sixties. But other women? Nope.
I’ve been incredibly lucky: the men I work, ride, and climb with make it easy to forget that I’m any different. However, the more I thought about my experiences (heavy period while camping the night before a mountain bike race, anyone?) the more I realized that I might be able to offer a unique perspective – and show other women and girls that there is absolutely a place for them among the men, even if the details aren’t all the same.
The topics on this blog will vary from week to week and certainly season to season, and not all of them will strictly address the things that make me “different.” My plan is to approach each post with the idea that while my experiences might vary from my husband’s and coworkers’ by necessity, adaptation, not avoidance, is always the goal. All of life is an adventure, no matter exactly what it looks like.