By Bri'Ann Stephens
On November 9, 2016 at 1:40 a.m., I sat in my bed, in silence. And, I cried.
I had just received the news that Donald Trump won the 2016 Presidential Election.
Similar to my friends, one may assume I cried out of fear – I am a 23-year-old black woman living in America.
However, my tears were due to the fact that Hillary Clinton, an American lawyer and politician – the first female presidential nominee in American history, lost the Presidential Election.
Hillary Clinton served as a U.S. senator from 2001 to 2009 and as secretary of state in the administration of President Barack Obama from 2009 to 2013. Not to mention, she served as first lady from 1993 to 2001, during the administration of her husband, Bill Clinton, the 42nd president of the United States.
Yet, the fact that she has been in politics for majority of her life meant nothing to the American people. When compared to a white male, her qualifications became void; she became inferior.
I am the Founder and CEO of a company that focuses on women empowerment. Women equality is something I am extremely passionate about. I sat in my room and I cried, not only for Hillary Clinton, but for women all over the world.
After coming to the realization that there's still work to be done, I began to wipe the tears from my eyes.
In that moment, I could feel God saying, "It is okay to cry, it is okay to feel, but channel your energy into your passion."
Many times, we—millennials—get into the habit of complaining, without either offering a solution, or offering a helping hand. I decided long ago that I would not complain for the sake of complaining.
I launched PinkProds.com in January 2016 with the hopes of inspiring and changing the world of women empowerment.
In the beginning the year, there was so much passion put into the company. I would spend hours brainstorming ways to make the company the best it could possibly become.
Now that we are closer to the end of the year, my momentum has decreased. I was beginning to feel as though the pace we were moving in was fine because we have been consistent.
I would visit social media often and notice the "race wars" between women, but I would ignore it. God revealed to me in my sadness that there's still work to be done in the world of women empowerment and my comfortability is not an option.
This is the time for me to use my voice and this is the time for us to stand together – now more than ever.
Over the past couple of years, we have made many things about race. Don't get me wrong, I believe racism is still alive and well. However, it is vital that women support women, even if our skin color and hair texture differs. We still have work to do, and ladies, we are stronger together.
We all have to do our parts in coming together for a greater purpose. This is not the time for us to hate one another and play the "blame game."
We can continue to fight one another or we can begin to appreciate one another for the things that make us unique. We can push each other down, or we can build each other up.
The most qualified woman in the world of politics lost to the least qualified man, and that is a problem.
As women, we must begin to hold each other up and fight for the things that society says we cannot and should not have. I long for the day when women are not struggling for rightfully deserved positions, simply because of their gender.
#ImWithHer. I believe "Her" is not just a representation of Hillary Clinton. Her is every woman who has ever faced adversity, discrimination, suffering, and harsh judgments solely based on her gender. I am with Her.
To keep up with Bri, follow her on Instagram, @Briann.stephens.