Being a successful woman is so much more than being able to make men respect you. So much more than finding a supportive partner. So much more than raising kids in a gender-equal way. So much more than racking up professional accolades.

When will I feel truly successful? Even after I’ve notched up an impressive resume, twice over, I still haven’t been able to forget the sneering remarks of my classmates. Long after I’ve proven a woman can be a good boss, a better one even than a man, the memory of the female boss from hell hasn’t faded. And finally, years after I’ve succeeded in achieving babedom, the playground taunts about my skin colour and my nerdiness linger.

Success will be when these voices, these memories cease to matter. Success will be when the past breaks away behind me and I soar weightless, free into the future. Total freedom. Yes, that’s what success feels like it should feel like.

Then I will rest easy.

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