From the Mouth of a Not-Babe

“Being nice will not change the world. Being nice can help to get you what you want and make people like you, but that is different than making a change. Getting what you want and changing the world are two different things. In one case you can end with what you want and still leave everyone happy, but in the other case you will always find resistance. If there were no opposition, there would be no need to make a change because it would have already happened.”

My daughter means business.  Takes no crap in a male-dominated field.  She had to dress conservatively, without makeup.  Even an oxford shirt with one button undone gives them the wrong idea, she said.   

Even as a baby, she was intense, quiet and serious, an infant who would give you a look of disdain if we tried to lighten the mood with a quick game of peek-a-boo.  As if, her little face seemed to say.

We are so very different, mother and daughter.  One of us is constantly laughing, riding horses and playing with words.   The other is fond of rocks- collecting them, climbing them, analyzing their chemical properties.  Rocks and math and music.

And women’s rights.   Her university put up posters. “Need extra help in math? Tutoring available!” was the caption under a photo of sexy, blonde, dumbfounded young woman.  Seriously? How offensive, she thought.  And she ran off copies of a picture of a shirtless male model and taped him up over the stereotypical not-good-at-math-girl.   Take that, university.  

I was raised in a different time and a different faith.  Be good.  Behave.  Mind your manners.  Don’t make waves. Don’t make trouble.

It’s a lousy way to raise a confident woman, I learned.   If there’s a magic ingredient to success, it’s confidence.   Confidence that if you butt heads with the world, you keep going because you need to do what has to be done to change things for the better.




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