As I mourn the passing of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, I can’t help but see pieces of my grandmothers in Ginsburg’s spirit. Both Mémère and Nan were trailblazers — they played sports, raised families, pursued degrees and worked tirelessly as respected nurses for Mercy Hospital. They were the matriarchs of our families, the women who everyone turned to for guidance.

They both outlived their husbands by decades, continuing to live independently in their own homes, continuing to share their laughter, warmth and wisdom to everyone who paid them a visit.

They carried immeasurable responsibility on their shoulders.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, in many ways, was our nation’s grandmother.

She welcomed the language and communication of younger generations. She playfully went along with the nickname “Notorious RBG,” embraced all of the pop culture phenomena with a twinkle in her eye and continued making history with her ardent devotion to law.

Millennial women look up to women like RBG, to our grandmothers, because we realize that our paths to higher education, our careers and our personal freedoms were battles that had to be fought in courtrooms across America and, ultimately, in the Supreme Court of the United States.

We admire our grandmothers. We love them and respect them. We hope to live up to the examples they have set for us. Even when they pass away, it is their vision for a better tomorrow that keeps us going.

Emma Joyce

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