Nevertheless, she persisted. It’s almost a rallying cry today. Undoubtedly, when Senator Mitch McConnell uttered those words about Elizabeth Warren he did not know it would trigger a virtual storm of tweets, retweets and women adopting it as their own. In fact, it has become so popular that Chelsea Clinton wrote a new book She Persisted, which features 13 American women who have overcome adversity. In addition, it was decided today the Fearless Girl statue, which was erected the eve of International Women’s Day will remain for another year on Wall Street. In other words, she will persist to stare down the bull of Wall Street. In a quick google search, I found persist defined as, to continue firmly, or obstinately, to exist or carry on. What does nevertheless, she persisted mean to you? For me, it’s personal. That’s why we, at Whitney Howard Designs created the Quotable Cuff with these encouraging words.
Let me explain why it’s personal. I recently hosted a 50th birthday celebration for my dear friend and colleague, Stefanie. As I looked around the room at these women I recognized the strength and beauty in each, including the guest of honor. The guest of honor is a breast cancer survivor. Last year I watched her accept her diagnosis, receive treatment, all the while working and taking care of her family with a grace and strength that was nothing short of amazing. I would say despite the challenges placed in her path nevertheless, she persisted. Then I glanced to the side, saw another one of Stefanie’s friends, a woman who stood by her husband as he battled addiction and went through recovery. This woman held her family together fearlessly. She assisted her husband in healing, and life at home remained loving and stable for her children. Indeed this woman is the epitome of nevertheless, she persisted. I went to get another helping of salad and started up a conversation with Stefanie’s friend who teaches Theater at a nearby school. After her divorce, she moved across town to be closer to a school that better suited her daughter. This move geographically separated them from family, friends and support. It meant rebuilding their lives. She is raising a beautiful and strong daughter, showing her by example how to nevertheless, persist.
Look around at the women in your world. Do you have a woman or women, who come to mind when you hear, nevertheless, she persisted? Women are strong. Every day we are out there doing what some would say is impossible. Whether it’s breaking new barriers, accomplishing new tasks, raising families with odds stacked against us, or fighting illness, we are often the glue holding it together. Our Quotable Cuff is a reminder to all of us of the fortitude of women. Just like the Fearless Girl Statue who will now persist on Wall Street, we have persisted, we do persist, we will persist.