What it Means to Be a Cowgirl

According to Merriam-Webster’s dictionary, a cowgirl is defined as a woman who rides a horse and whose job is to take care of cows or horses, especially in the western U.S.

To me, this definition is very limiting, because I believe cowgirls exist everywhere. I know they do, because I’m lucky enough to know many of them.

So, what does it mean to be a cowgirl?


A cowgirl is a woman who doesn’t give up on her dreams, no matter how big or how crazy they may seem. She is strong willed, opinionated and often rubs people the wrong way but doesn’t give a damn because she knows she doesn’t owe the world a thing.

She looks you straight in the eye with a firm handshake when she meets you.She holds the door open for anyone, and thanks other profusely when they offer that same kindness.

She isn’t afraid of a hard days work, whether that means she comes home with dirt under her fingernails from preg checking cows, or a migraine the size of Alaska after crunching numbers on the computer.

She can drive a trailer full of 4H lambs to the county fair and manage to make her world famous cookies for the bake sale, and remind her husband to pick up his cholesterol medicine at CVS.

She is a the single mom trying to do her best by her kids, working three jobs to make ends meet and never complains at the cards she was given. She still manages to wear mascara and lipstick every day just because she can.

She is the 80 year old woman at the bingo hall, drenched in turquoise jewelry with a cold sip of whiskey next to her, anxiously awaiting a visit from her grandchildren that afternoon.

She is the business woman in the sky rise building, hustling her way to the top in her heels and deals. She can talk her way through a fiscal year plan and meet the boys for a cigar later that day to celebrate, and still make it home in time to watch Grey’s Anatomy.


She is the college student in her senior year, wondering what on God’s green earth she will do when she graduates, but still has faith that it will all work out. She is determined to find her way in the world and make  her parents proud.

She is the young girl who grew up being bullied in school and is still kind to the world, because her heart is warm. She understands that life is unfair, but wants to be the light, the smile, the hug–a reason for other struggling kids to come back the next day.


She is the middle-aged momma whose children are grown and gone, immersed into the world that seems so unfamiliar to her. She fumbles with her smart phone but learns to text LOL, just to stay close to her daughter in Sacramento, who followed her dreams in real estate.

The cowgirl.

She is you.

And she is me.

And let her be in the daughter’s we raise and set free.








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