"May we teach our children that speaking out without the fear of retribution, is our culture's new North Star"
Mantra of my twenties: Just keep your eyes down, feet firmly planted on the well-traveled ground and your dreams within reach. But not too close within reach. Because there will be days you can feel those silly little dreams tickle your fingertips as if to remind you, "You've made it. This is what you came for. But not so fast, little lady... you have a price to pay."
Before the protests, the sea of black gowns on a red carpet... before the hashtags of solidarity, I secretly played out these protests in my mind when I didn't know how to process the conflict I felt in a "quid pro quo" world. I'm not on the verge of dishing the dirt on some secret industry drama, where I'm inserted into a scenario of unwanted advances by someone with immeasurable power. This is about you. This is about the women secretly or not so secretly judging your abilities, your strengths, your accomplishments. This is about how so many women left fear be a detriment to unity. Because I've been there, underneath the high heel pressing down on my fingertips, hoping I would bleed out before I toughened up. But I knew better and now I try to do better.
Yes, surround yourself by women who raise you up, but also with the ones that will tell you why you've fallen down. It's not your responsibility to change how people feel about you. But it is your responsibility to recognize the good and encourage success, even when it isn't about you. Someday, I will share my story. But for now, all you need to know is that my feet are firmly planted on the ground, I've grasped my dreams and I'll pass them down like a baton because you deserve them too.