Do You Know Her?
By user553758 on May 07, 2008
Often on Sunday evenings my thoughts drift to "what can I wear tomorrow?" while I'm preparing dinner or driving home after a great time with friends. But this past weekend was a little different. I was looking forward to getting up at 6am on Tuesday morning to gather with 6,000 other women in San Francisco's Moscone Center for the Professional Business Women in California conference.
Why rise at 6am? Was it for the bagels, cream cheese and hot coffee? Not! Is it that fascinating to get up at oh-dark-thirty to take BART along with hundreds of other commuters into the City and meet with women? Yes! The opportunity to spend focused time with other women - listening, laughing, learning, living - is uplifting. It's not what I eat, nor what I hear or even what I see. It's what I feel - while I'm there and after I leave.
I feel hopeful as I listen to Heather Hopkins share how her mother's experience of growing up poor and ashamed of her clothing was the impetus for her non-profit, My New Red Shoes which provides homeless children in San Francisco clothing for their first day of school. I feel encouraged as I meet Magatte Wade, a young Senegalese woman whose desire to preserve her heritage launched a beverage company, Adina, that competes with Starbucks for bottled coffee and tea market share.
I feel grateful as I listen to Cokie Roberts share about founding women like Abigail Adams who radically influenced politics and social change. I feel proud as I listen to Madeline Albright's wit and humor as she shares about her experiences as our first female Secretary of State.
While Abigail Adams, Cokie Roberts and her mom, Linda Boggs, former Ambassador and Representative, as well as Madeline Albright have lived extraordinary lives, they are not unusual women. Yes, they're bright, intelligent, articulate, courageous, determined and tenacious. But that's a woman. No matter what their education, socio-economic status, or nationality -women have consistently found creative solutions to the problems facing their children, their families, and their communities. Being at the PBWC conference reinvigorates me with the enthusiasm, tenacity, and creativity to continue finding new ways to solve problems - for ourselves, our children, our families, our communities, our nation, our world.
Thanks to all the women at PBWC that nurture my feeling connected and affirmed.