For my children, for all children

Anne Penikis
Posted May 2, 2019 from United States

I have the fortune to work for this amazing organization and while I am so grateful for myself. I am even more grateful for the example I can set for my children. The reward of telling them what I work on, why I do it, who I am impacting. That is my resistance...resisting thru example; doing work that has meaning, makes the world a bit better. 

I had a work call a few weeks back with a representative group of women across the World Pulse community, and literally the world. And to have my daughter look over my shoulder at the computer screen and see was amazing. To point out each woman and tell her where that woman lives (Philippines, Pakistan, Spain, etc.) and share the unique work they were each doing was significant. As an average pre-teen I think she mainly rolled her eyes and thought...jeez Mom...your work is so boring. But I know that overtime my sharing about myself and the work women do around the world will sink in for her and for her brother.

I'll be honest, it's hard to keep up the resistance...be it on the work front, the political front, and the personal front. But when the going gets tough and I think I can't do more than I am doing, I get a new wind. Sometimes the wind comes from a conversation with a friend, sometimes it comes from a podcast or a show, or a book or an exchange with my children. In the end I get up and keep going.

The most recent boost to my resistance effort came from an consistently reassuring resource...Brene Brown. She's got a new show on Netflix, plus her ever amazing TED talk. But she said there is something she does every day when she gets up that inspired me. She shared this..."It’s a choice you make everyday...today I’ll choose courage over comfort." Which to me translates to...I will continue to resist. Resist the bad choices being made in my government, by people in my community and even by myself. I'm not Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris or even our amazing founder Jensine, but I can fight the good fight in my corner. For my children and for the future.

To quote a very famous American President (who inspired Brene Brown) Theodore Roosevelt...

"It is not the critic who counts; not the (wo)man who points out how the strong (wo)man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the (wo)man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends her/himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if she/he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that her/his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat."

I added the (wo) and her/his because it's not just about men and I think he knew that, but in his day and time that's not how it would have been said.

So...today and tomorrow and the next day, I will make the daily choice to choose courage over comfort.

This story was submitted in response to Why I Resist.

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