The 2021 Presidential Inauguration was a very special day in our country. It was a special day because, like in ceremonies past, we swore in our next president and vice president. But, this Inauguration Day was a day like no other, especially if you are a female. For women, it wasn't about Republican or Democrat, who won or who lost, it was about a moment when our country and the world saw us as they have never seen us before.

I was brought to tears many times during the ceremony, overcome with emotion by the powerful images of amazing, strong and confident women who were dominating the event. These women, as they graced center stage with dignity and purpose, in a moment that was ,long overdue, shined like medals of honor. We as women and, most importantly, our daughters and granddaughters now know there is nothing we can't do.

Here are five defining moments that took my breath away, gave me hope, made me proud to be a woman and proud to be an American.

1. Sen. Amy Klobuchar set the tone with her incredible opening speech. She, along with so many other women in Congress, are engaging and eloquent speakers. The thing that she is able to do so well is make you feel comfortable, like you are talking to a friend. Her strength is in her intelligence, even temper and relatability. Senator Klobuchar is comfortable in her own skin and she exudes a positive and reassuring demeanor that is both refreshing and amazing. Her leadership skills are unprecedented and I, for one, was happy she was with me during this transition.

2. Georgia Firefighter, Captain Andrea Hall delivering the Pledge of Allegiance was both powerful and beautiful. She carried herself in a strong, stoic and military fashion. The fact that she, not only recited the pledge verbally, but through sign language as well, made the moment almost play out in slow motion. Her incredibly strong, yet soft and nurturing delivery showed women and girls that strength and grace can work together to move mountains.

3. Lady Gaga and Jennifer Lopez performing, during the inauguration, blew my mind. Both of these women are superstars in entertainment. Each of them is multi talented and has honed their craft to perfection. But, neither one was a typical choice to deliver our country's most patriotic songs. Most of the time, those songs are performed by opera singers or more classical artists, never pop stars. Yet, there they were belting out our most patriotic songs with passion and force. You could feel the love they have for their county in every single note. When Lady Gaga looked back at the American flag, standing atop of the Capital Building, I got chills. At the same time, when Jennifer Lopez started singing, God Bless America, I teared up and the hairs on the back of my neck stood at attention. Both women used their incredible gifts to remind us all of the deep love we, too, have for our country.

4. The swearing in of Kamala Harris, as the first ever female Vice President of the United States by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, was awe inspiring. I can't say enough about this moment and how it made me feel as a female. Just to put things into perspective, growing up, I NEVER saw anything like this happening. No women were being sworn in to a national position of power. Young women saw middle aged and older men making decisions for our country. Women, especially minority women, never really thought or were groomed for the possibility of a career in politics. We didn't actually see anyone who looked like us in political circles. Today, all of that ended. Over the years. women have made their way into positions of law and government, but not to this extent. That is why today was so amazing. Thanks to Vice President Harris and Supreme Court Justice Sotomayor, we have now been SEEN during an inauguration and not just as somebody's wife. We are the ones taking center stage now and we are the ones who will be a force of change in this country as we move into a brighter and better future for all.

5. Last, but certainly not least, the moment when National Youth Poet Laureate, Amanda Gorman, 22, stepped up to the podium. I was so moved by her original poem, I found that during her reading, I had held my breath. I guess I was in such awe of the pure, honest, enlightening and perfect words, I forget to breath. Her poem made me feel so many things, but the one feeling I keep coming back to is hope. Hope for my heart, my soul, my life and my country. This young women is enchanting, strong, poised and confident like a queen. She is a gentle, real, empathetic, true voice and power to be reckoned with and she is gong to change the world. Amanda and the young people that will be inspired by her are our future. She made me proud to be a women AND proud to be an American.

My heart is full knowing that my granddaughter is living in a time that will be influenced by our new Vice President, Kamala Harris, the women we saw today and the incredible women that will become our leaders in the future.

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