This is me in middle school. I thought I was the bees’ knees in my Miami Vice sweatshirt and Converse teal high tops. I may have had my haircut with a bowl on top of my head, unsure on that specific point. My middle school daughter saw this photo and said, “Mom, you’re wearing a turtleneck”, rolled her eyes, and promptly left the room. She is quite the judgey pants these days.
This girl had a great childhood with loving parents who made quite a few sacrifices for me to make sure I had a good education and all the things I would need to be a successful human.
Despite this, this photo represents a turning point for me, right around the time I started caring about others’ idea of success and silencing my inner voice. Even at this age, I was being conditioned to believe I couldn’t pursue my dreams, I had to make safe choices. You see, previous to middle school I was passionate about human rights, the environment, and equality. I was upset when reading stories of racism or indignities and I was ready to fight for rights for all, and protect our planet. After middle school, I was very lost and continued to be for many years to come. I’m back now, fast forward to today, here is an excerpt from my website for local candidacy:
“Why do I feel called to public service? When I was 10 years old, I was passionate about equality and confused about the injustices in the world. I’ve been involved in creating positive change for years, (Cary 101 citizen’s college, Triangle Woman of the Year campaign for Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Leadership Raleigh Alumni Board, and Board member of North Carolina Community Garden Partners) and I’m eager to do more. Today, I‘m ready to put my skills and heart into policy-making that serves ALL the people in our community.”
I’ve decided to use the rest of my days to raise my sweet kiddos and fight for folks who don’t have a voice, or whose voices aren’t amplified over the noise of society. I wake up impassioned daily to fight for this and cannot believe it took me this long to get here. But I’m here, and I’m not going anywhere.
So why am I telling you this? “70% of girls feel more confident about their futures after hearing from women role models. Thank you to Inspiring Girls International for starting this movement.”