This last week or so, I keep seeing things that make me all weepy. Yeah, I’m a girl, and girls do that. But there’s power in these images, these stories, and these tears. This is for your girls, you, and even your boys. Prepare to be awed.
Last night, a friend sent me the post titled, “I am Malala.” This is the story of the young girl shot point blank in the head by the Taliban for advocating for the rights of girls to go to school. Here’s the video of Malala’s family’s situation well before this took place. Trust me, it is worth the 9 minutes, even if it shocks you or makes you cry. Her father thought he was offering himself up to danger to stand up to the forces of evil, but his daughter took the bullet. What this man and his daughter teach the world, for her sake, for her friend sake, and for the betterment of his whole country, is really awe-inspiring.
New York Times documentary based on Malala Yousafzai, a teenage activist
We need more 'thinking girls'
Hours before that, I was sitting in the ballroom of the Baldwin School taking a professional development class. The class, by the way, was organized by and for moms in social media who help each other grow their networks and their businesses, which alone is a testament to the creativity and power of thinking women. I entered the building a bit put off by the wealth and entitlement of the expensive private school education that the Baldwin girls receive. But after taking a tour led by some of the senior class, I can’t help but admit what a great world it would be if all girls were nurtured in the way that these bright, motivated girls clearly were within their school. I actually came home thinking, now how could I create that same environment of a close-knit community that encourages the kids to become “thinking girls”… but without the tuition? In fact, nearly all of the children that I personally know here in America receive an entitled education, compared to what the girls in Malala’s class — and girls in much of the world — have access to.
Today, Daily Worth highlighted a new project, being funded through Kickstarter, that offers the first engineering toy specifically for girls. You have to go watch this video for GoldiBlox, The Engineering Toy for Girls. Yep, I got weepy while watching. You see, my girls love to read, and they are super smart (of course they are). But I’m still afraid that they won’t even consider a lifetime in the science and engineering fields. Why would they? I didn’t even know what an engineer was until I was in college. Despite my label of gifted as a youngster, despite my involvement in problem solving clubs, despite my curiosity about the world, no one ever mentioned a career where I might engineer my world. Ever. I ended up in the language arts, because I was a good reader. I would gladly pony up $30 today to give my girls that option, covered in pink and ribbon and accompanied by a book, but over 5,500 other people beat me to it, and now I’ll have to wait to buy mine when it hits the stores next year.
Credit card discrimination
Just last week, I was overjoyed (more tears) to hear that the practically medieval law disproportionately affecting stay at home moms that incredibly got passed and put into effect last year is going to be revised. The CARD Act of 2009 included a provision that kicked in last year disallowing stay-at-home parents the right to their own credit without the approval of their spouse if they could not document their own income. GRRRRR! What bull!!! But thanks largely to one woman, Holly McCall, and www.MomsRising.org, it looks like the CARD Act will be revised to make sense for families. Even when society falls back to bad choices for women and their families, we persevere, pull together, and make things better for our daughters.
Having been decimated by divorce, having been shaken by layoffs, having seen friends who lost their whole self when their world was financially devastated because of some man I’m grateful to have this business, started before my kids and carried on through two pregnancies, to carve out my professional self. I am not an engineer, I am not a politian, I am not an international activist, but I am a mom who is modeling success in this world to my daughters through my business. I have that right. I have that privilege. And so do you.
You go, girl.