International Women’s Day is once again fast approaching and as always, becomes a time of reflection for me. In 2011 I was inducted into the WA Women’s Hall of Fame along with 99 other women from the past 100 years – celebrating the achievements of inspiring and incredible women – all who had contributed to the fabric of our great State.
I stood there, my name listed alongside Edith Cowan (posthumously), Professor Fiona Stanley, Dr Fiona Wood, Gina Rinehart, Priya Cooper, Lord Mayor Lisa Scaffidi, Dr Anne- Azza Aly, Margaret Court and… because someone also thought so – me! I sat there star-struck, in awe of these great women around me. But as I sat there, I was also profoundly affected by the fact that I was there in one of the greatest capacities that a woman has – inside of me was another heart beating alongside mine, I was in the early phases of growing a new life. It was my secret and as I cradled my already growing tummy on stage amongst these women, not quite yet ready to tell the world, I looked up and all I could think of was what this new little life meant for me as a woman, and as a mother.
However, only days later, my world came crashing down as our little baby was not to be. I felt totally violated. Robbed by some invisible being who stole all my hopes, dreams and plans for the future. It was singlehandedly one of the greatest moments for me professionally and most horrific moments I’ve ever had to face personally. I steeled myself, took stock of my life, my aspirations and stepped back in all areas to focus on what mattered most to me – being a mother to my beautiful son. Four years on, I have another son and a daughter and a renewed passion for the journey that lies ahead for our family.
Now with a daughter to guide, and all too familiar with the challenges that lie ahead for her as we still fight for equal pay, equal rights and equal opportunities, I remind myself how blessed she will be for how far we have already come.
I don’t know what the future holds for me as I’m still firmly planted in the cyclonic winds of early childhood but I do know that I’ve already achieved something kick-ass incredible… something I struggle to comprehend that it was even possible – the fact that I created LIFE three times over. And what amazing little lives they are.
So many inspiring women around me that come into my world on a daily basis – International Women’s Day WA (IWD) is a celebration of you, of us and how we affect the world through peace, through innovation and through sheer hard work and determination. Yep – it’s good to be a lady!