Click here to see the post-convention Echo2.3!
Note from the Editor: Vicky wore the Scarf in February–we’re catching up on sharing the Scarf’s experiences!
Today the purple scarf came. I saw the package and ripped it open at once, excited to be a part of this unique experience. The package was delivered to my office first thing this morning and I promptly took off my necklace and replaced it with my scarf, thankful it matched the black and grey outfit that I happened to be wearing. I spent 15 or so minutes explaining to the bewildered student worker why I received the scarf and my involvement with the SCW. I also told my colleague Ben who shares our office suite too, and we made plans to go to lunch. Ben and I often have wonderful conversations about gender given his involvement with the Standing Committee for Men & Masculinities. He always provides a respectful and thoughtful place to discuss articles we’ve read, incidents with students, or the myriad ways gender plays a role in our work lives.
Fast forward to this afternoon. Today is also a big day for our campus. The President of our system came to present the state of the university address. My university is located in the bankrupt state of Illinois, so unfortunately the address had a tone of economic doom and gloom. Luckily, this address also showcased several strong accomplishments for our institution. The President finished his speech with a resounding call for the audience to remember how we achieved our accomplishments, given the diminished financial support from the state — a sense of community.
My first thought? Well, community is a bit cheesy. We use that word a LOT working in residence life. Sometimes it resonates and sometimes it feels more like a catch phrase. Overall, I thought he did great presenting the material and trying to rally the worried crowd into having a positive mindset with the hard times ahead. I get that. C’est la vie.
Fast forward to this evening. I settle down to write this blog post. Hmmm…. What to write? What impacted me on this day of wearing the purple scarf? And then I realize that I am sitting in the same exact spot where I wrote my application materials for the SCW Directorate board almost one year ago. Funny, the word community feels genuine when thinking about this group of women I’ve joined. Not so cheesy, maybe…
Before I start writing, I do what many of you probably also do — procrastinate (or ruminate, if you want to give me the benefit of the doubt!). I check my personal email and find delightful news. The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) reports that the White House has filed a brief today in the historic Proposition 8 Supreme Court case calling denial of marriage to lesbian and gay people unconstitutional. This is BIG! For the first time, the White House put action behind words to support my right to marry the person I love. The email goes on to describe the monumental inspiration this provides to LGBT people, and commends President Obama with the rally cry of a full-force advocacy group.
Community. Nope. It’s definitely not cheesy. See, not only am I woman strengthened by the challenges I’ve faced in life thus far, buoyed by support I’ve found with the women in the SCW, loud and proud in advocacy of women’s issues, but I am also a woman who loves another woman. It has become a large part of who I am and how I interact with the world. The treatment of women in our society has double the impact on my relationship! The people I surround myself with — my community, my partner, should not be taken for granted.
I am very thankful for the opportunity to wear the purple scarf. It made today special. The scarf compelled me take some time to reflect on the variety of people who make up my community and who mean the most to me. Wearing this scarf served to remind me of the support I get from the women in my life every day, and gave me the opportunity to celebrate and appreciate these important members of my community.
~Vicky Dean, SCW Directorate Member
At ACPA in Las Vegas we were proud to honor four amazing women in our field. Please be sure to congratulate them! Research & Scholarship Award: Dr. Mollie Monahan-Kreishman Wise Woman Award: Dr. Katrina Rodriguez Jodie Castanza Outstanding Service to the … Continue reading
My name is Nichelle Shuck; I am a second year Higher Education graduate student at Kent State University. I received the traveling scarf from a dear college friend of mine during the Ohio College Personnel Association Annual Conference. I think it’s safe to say we had the same mentor in college, who led us to this profession. This connection guided my use of the traveling scarf, as I decided to take pictures with women who in the past year inspired me to continue to after my goal in becoming a woman leader in the world of higher education. In my last semester in graduate school I have found that higher education life is filled with ups and downs– moments where you know actually why you choose to go down this road and moments when the impact you are making in the lives of students, co-workers and at our institutions are clear as can be. There are also “not so clear “moments, which are moments where you question what true difference you are making in the larger picture of higher education? Where you can’t see the path of development? It’s the challenge and support motto of our profession, the idea that even as professionals we will have our ups and downs. The bright purple scarf served as a reminder to me of all the wonderful women who have been there to challenge, support and add color to my life in the past year. The scarf reminded me of color added by my mentors and warmth of their friendships —and it reminded me that as young professional it is important to pass this color and warmth on as travel through the ups and downs of my own journey.
((Please see pictures below))
This is at my Kent State University Graduate Assistantship – which is to develop and support service-learning and civic engagement opportunities for students, staff, and faculty and Kent State. This is my co-worker, friend, and Higher Education peer- Liz Bosworth, my amazing boss Ann Gosky, and myself in our office. I enjoy many long talks about social justice, equality, and life with these ladies.
This picture is of my dear friend Phyillis Vair, who is a full-time undergraduate student/employe and soon to be graduate of KSU this spring. She is a dear friend who has invited me into her home and provided me with a place to stay and family while at Kent State. On my right is Dr. Stephane Booth who has supported me during my time at Kent State as an AmeriCorps VISTA and now as a graduate student and graduate assistant at Kent State.
The next picture is of me and my faculty advisor, Dr. Susan Iverson. She has inspired me to get learn and grow more as a student, a professional, and as a feminist. She is always challenging me to learn more about myself and my role as woman leader in higher education. She was my teaching internship advisor and allowed me the opportunity to co-teach with her a class on service-learning. She is a role model and mentor for me as a lifelong learner.
The next picture is of me with my two supervisors at Ursuline College – where I serve as a part-time Graduate Assistant in Residence Life. Both of these women inspire me to grow and lead as a young woman. A year ago, I never thought I’d have a chance to connect my passion for women’s issues and student development and then I met Amy Lechko, who gave me the chance to work at Ursuline College over an interview for a paper I was writing on Ursuline College as the only woman’s college in Ohio which spurred into a hour long conversation about gender issues. Gina De-Mart Kraus fills my time will so much laughter and fun and not only invited me into the residence life family but also into the life of her amazing almost year old little girl. Without their support in the past year, I truly do not think I would be considering the path into residence life.
Me and Amy
Me and Gina
As the Standing Committee for Women celebrates its 40 year anniversary, we have compiled a list of ways to honor and appreciate the women in our lives. These are all contributions from graduate students, undergraduate students, faculty members, administrators, mothers, sisters, friends, and partners. Thank you all for your sharing your ideas, from writing notes to each other to interrupting male privilege in our daily lives. And without further ado:
Top 40 Ways to Honor and Appreciate Women
40. Some of the ways I honor the women in my life are praying for them at night in my evening prayer. I always bring to mind people and events in my life I am thankful for and the influential women in my life are always a part of that group.
39. I thank the women in my life is through random acts of kindness or phone calls.
38. I constantly tell the women in my life, especially women of color, that they are beautiful by sending them letters or memes/texts that state you are beautiful because_______________ (example: you woke up today and decided to remain resilient, other times it’s a physical trait, skill, or something they say/do).
37. I celebrate my mother’s birthday each year even though she is deceased.
36. I have sister date nights with my sisters, god sisters, and sister in laws.
35. I think I appreciate and honor women (and men, and myself) by sharing my own doubts, fears, and joys, and by creating a space for them to do the same by being present and listening generously.
34. I try to encourage my heterosexual female students to have meaningful female friendships instead of always focusing on romantic or physical relationships with men.
33. I praise her character as often as I praise her appearance.
32. I would buy her something frivolous, and perfectly impractical that she would never buy herself.
31. I give women a ‘shout out’ via your Facebook status or Twitter.
30. I share books that inspire me or remind me of my mentor/friend.
29. I share resources in higher education and in my local community for women to make connections to other women.
28. I like to try something new together with other women.
27. I host a brown bag lunches to discuss various topics important to women.
26.I love to honor and appreciate women in my life by LISTENING to them, finding out what is going on in their lives, how it makes them feel and think.
25. I make donations to a local women’s organization.
24. I try to appreciate all women. When I get upset or jealous of a fellow female – I just try to put myself in her shoes. I think honoring and appreciating women is about recognizing we’re all women and therefore all beautiful and worthwhile.
23. I try to use inclusive language by not referring to a group of women as “girls” or “guys.”
22. I create women’s only spaces, for instance starting a women’s circle or a “stitch’n’bitch” in which women can come together .
21. I acknowledge the different ways we love ourselves and each other (as in, appreciating our friends who wear makeup, or don’t, or love working out, or don’t, or are all about getting dressed up to go out…or don’t).
20. I try not use “female” and “woman” interchangeably, as some folks may be male bodied but identify as women.
19. I recognize brains over beauty.
18. I think actually expressing to the women in our lives that we love and appreciate them is big – the best thing we can do is tell each other in various ways (notes, texts, skywriting, spending time together) why we actually need each other.
17. I write appreciation notes to women
16. I honor women by respecting each woman’s expression of herself. I want to celebrate the differences and different choices we all make and make those differences part of what it means to be a woman. I appreciate the women in my life by telling them I love them.
15. I have honored women by the way my husband and I raised our daughters. They learned from the very beginning that what they had to say was important, and that they deserved to be listened to. We taught them that love did not depend on what you looked like, but rather on who you were inside. We encouraged all of our children to be who they were, and not who society wanted them to be.
14. I married a man who was secure enough in his own manliness that he was able to truly approach our marriage as one between equals.
13. I try to be an ally to women by learning more about feminism and patriarchy.
12. I refer to some of the women in my life as a mentor— it lets them know I think they are doing something right to pass on.
11. I approach my relationship with my partner who is a woman in an equalitarian way.
10. I honor myself as a woman by attempting to interrupt some of the sexism I internalized. When I look at myself in the mirror, I try not to pick on my flaws but rather acknowledge my strengths.
9. I try to be very conscious of how I speak to little girls. Instead of complimenting how pretty they look, complimenting how smart they are or how good they are at something.
8. I learn about the history of women and how women have made contributions to society.
7. I acknowledge that intersections of identity create different experiences for women. For instance being a heterosexual woman of color is different than being a white queer woman.
6. I attend plays, watch movies, and read books written and produced by women.
5. I try not to gender my kids. I honor women by letting my son know it is okay to wear clothes made for girls, do activities that are usually designated for girls, and express themselves in ways that girls have been taught to express themselves (i.e. crying).
4. I try and appreciate all women (which isn’t always easy), and maintain awareness of a semi-universal sisterhood.
3. I am proud to identify as a feminist!
2. I try to interrupt male privilege in everyday situations.
1. I honor the women who have come before me, the sacrifices they have made, and the many ways in which they have been irrepressible and strong.
-Hannah Retzkin, SCW EmpowHer Fellow
|As a fan of the “Traveling Pants” book series, I thought creating a traveling scarf for the women of ACPA was a wonderful idea; of course I had to participate! I had the scarf from February 7-13, and in that time I’d like to think I grew at least a little bit. The first time I put the scarf on, I remember feeling as if I was truly a part of something that was bigger than myself; it was a little existential to realize that this one purple scarf was traversing across the United States to be worn by professional women. Is it silly to say that I felt empowered by the scarf, like it was giving off the positive energy of all those who had worn it before? I felt honored to be included in the group of women who got to wear this scarf; as a graduate student in the midst of job searching, the scarf gave me a sense of confidence and comfort in the fact that I can be successful and influential in our chosen field because other women have paved the path in front of me. I also had the chance to spend time with my parents over the weekend when I had the scarf. When my mom made a comment about the scarf, I was able to share about it’s purpose and journey. She, too, thought it a wonderful idea to explore and celebrate the identities and cultures of higher education’s professional women. At times, it is difficult to explain what “people in higher education do,” so the scarf was a great vehicle to have that conversation and to talk about not just what we do, but why we do it. Personally, my why is this: I believe in the power of education because I can see how far I have come because of my educational experiences. I was supported, mentored, and encouraged to achieve by admissions counselors, academic advisors, and student activities advisors. Now, I will be the first in my family to obtain a master’s degree. I am proud of my accomplishments and I know I have many others to thank for their part in my successes. Someday, I want to look back and know that I was able to be influential in helping someone else achieve their educational goals. I have already said thank you to those who came before me, so now it’s time to pay it forward to a new generation of students.~Laura Hoffman
|My day to wear the scarf turned out to be the last day working with my students at Immaculata University. I will be moving back to my hometown of Buffalo, NY this week, and I received the scarf the day before Spring Break began. It’s been bittersweet, as I look forward to being near my family again and starting a new chapter in my life, but sad to say goodbye to the many great people I’ve known during seven years living in the Philadelphia area. Wearing the scarf, I’m pictured here with some of the wonderful student leaders I’ve had the opportunity to work with while at Immaculata. What I value most about them is even when things are busy and stressful, they can make me smile and remind me why I chose this work. They all had kind and supportive words when my departure was announced, and to hear that I made some kind of difference helps cut away the questioning and self-doubt that comes at times. As much as I am excited about this big change in my life, I can’t help to be nervous about the unknown future, but having great people who are behind me makes all the difference.
Today we bring you two times the scarf travel in one great post!
I received the magical scarf on Wednesday, February 13. I was super excited because the previous “scarf-wearer” had wrapped it up so cute and told me all about her experience with the scarf and where it had traveled so far. When I was deciding what to wear on Thursday, I made sure my scarf was worked into the outfit.
I work as an Admission Representative at the University of Mount Union in Alliance, Ohio. Each spring, we hold various scholarship competitions and events. Thursday, February 14th held our Minority Achievement competition. The Minority Achievement Award is offered as result of an on-campus interview and essay competition, and is awarded to students who are members of any underrepresented group on Mount Union’s campus. This can include, race, gender, sexual orientation, personal attributes, etc. I was excited to wear my purple scarf to this event, not only because our school color is purple, but because I knew I would be seeing a different audience than I see on a typical work day.
I received many compliments on the scarf from coworkers and competitors for the competition. It gave me an opportunity to explain ACPA, as well as the Standing Committee for Women and how we chose to participate in this opportunity to feel connected with our “sisters” across the country. Some of the men even commented on the scarf!
I was proud to show off the purple asset to my attire, and hope to be a part of something like this again in the future. I hope the rest of my “sisters” had the same great experience!
The day I received the scarf I got a phone call from my friend Vira Douangmany Cage. She was asking me if I noticed when I saw her on TV two days earlier that she was wearing the scarf I had given her a while ago. She said she wore it for good luck on the day they were waiting for the jury’s verdict in the second trial she managed to get for her nephew Charles Wilhite.
For the last two years, Vira has dedicated her time to right a wrong committed by the State. Charles was jailed, convicted and sentenced to life without parole for a murder he did not commit. Vira believed in his innocence and used all her passion for social justice to fight for his freedom. Despite no legal background, she poured through legal documents with an eye of a trained civil rights attorney and maintained close communication with Charles’ public defenders. Vira reached out to other activists, and community members from Springfield, MA and beyond to form “Justice for Charles” to coordinate the efforts of getting Charles free. She became the spokesperson for the family and led the group to launch a series of community forums, rallies, and even a celebration of freedom, which led to the court granting Charles a new trial. Supporters included the victim’s family. On January 17, 2013, Vira and the group’s hard work and dedication paid off as a jury found Charles not guilty of murder and he was able to walk free after enduring 40 months of imprisonment.
It is people like Vira who give hope to social justice activists and inspire others. I am glad the Springfield NAACP is acknowledging Vira with a community service award at the Lift Every Voice Lecture Series this month (February 2013). Additionally, I am proud to share that my colleagues and I at the Center for Women & Community at the University of Massachusetts Amherst will present Vira with a Social Justice Leadership Award at our organization’s 40th Anniversary Gala on February 22 for her tireless community organizing and social justice work.
That day on the phone, I smiled to Vira and told her I was wearing the traveling scarf that represents our sisterhood and support for each other, as well as the shared history of struggle and resistance by women everywhere.
Since the scarf reminds us of all the amazing work other women are doing and inspires us with their brave stories and empowered efforts to make this a better world, it is only fitting to reflect on my wearing the scarf while thinking about Vira and feeling inspired by her spirit and actions, as well as dedicating the day to her. I am honored to have Vira in my life!
Hind & the Scarf
This year SCW is commemorating 40 years of Celebrating Contributions and Voices. We have a series of 40 lists that we will be sharing as the ACPA Convention approaches. This first list is 40 quotes about, by, and/or for women.
- Never give up, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn. -Harriet Beecher Stowe
- Parents can only give good advice or put them[children] on the right paths, but the final forming of a person’s character lies in their own hands. -Anne Frank
- I have never studied the art of paying compliments to women; but I must say that if all that has been said by orators and poets since the creation of the world in praise of women were applied to the women of America, it would not do them justice for their conduct during this war. – Abraham Lincoln
- As you become more clear about who you really are, you’ll be better able to decide what is best for you – the first time around. -Oprah Winfrey
- You must learn to be still in the midst of activity and to be vibrantly alive in repose-Indira Gandhi
- How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world. -Anne Frank
- I know God will not give me anything I can’t handle. I just wish that He didn’t trust me so much. -Mother Theresa
- No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. – Eleanor Roosevelt
- One is not born a woman, one becomes one. -Simone de Beauvoir
- Leaders are more powerful role models when they learn than when they teach. - Rosabeth Moss Kantor
- A good leader inspires people to have confidence in the leader, a great leader inspires people to have confidence in themselves -Eleanor Roosevelt
- The thing that is really hard, and really amazing, is giving up on being perfect and beginning the work of becoming yourself. -Anna Quindlen
- Women have always been at the forefront of progressive movements. Women can be depended on when you need bodies in the streets for women’s rights and human rights. -Marth Plimpton
- Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world. -Harriet Tubman
- The road to success is always under construction -Lily Tomlin
- I don’t think you ever stop giving. I really don’t. I think it’s an on-going process. And it’s not just about being able to write a check. It’s being able to touch somebody’s life. -Oprah Winfrey
- I would fight for my liberty so long as my strength lasted, and if the time came for me to go, the Lord would let them take me. -Harriet Tubman
- No one, Eleanor Roosevelt said, can make you feel inferior without your consent. Never give it. -Marian Wright Edelman
- When we do the best we can, we never know what miracle is wrought in our life, or in the life of another. – Helen Keller
- I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw something back. – Maya Angelou.
- It is only when we truly know and understand that we have a limited time on Earth and that we have no way of knowing when our time is up that we will begin to live each day to the fullest, as if it were the only one we had. - Elisabeth Kubler-Ross.
- Forget about the fast lane. If you really want to fly, just harness your power to your passion. -Oprah
- Everyone has inside of her a piece of good news. The good news is that you don’t know how great you can be! How much you can love! What you can accomplish! And what your potential is! – Anne Frank
- I don’t want to get to the end of my life and find that I lived just the length of it. I want to have lived the width of it as well. - Diane Ackerman
- The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams. – Eleanor Roosevelt.
- We can do no great things, only small things with great love. – Mother Teresa
- Great minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events, small minds discuss people. - Eleanor Roosevelt.
- When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, ‘I used everything you gave me’. – Erma Bombeck
- Always concentrate on how far you have come, rather than how far you have left to go. The difference in how easy it seems will amaze you. - Heidi Johnson
- The more anger towards the past you carry in your heart, the less capable you are of loving in the present. - Barbara De Angelis
- A woman is like a tea bag – you never know how strong she is until she gets in hot water. – Eleanor Roosevelt.
- Always go with the choice that scares you the most, because that’s the one that is going to require the most from you – Caroline Myss
- The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen nor touched but are felt in the heart. – Helen Keller
- I am willing to put myself through anything, temporary pain or discomfort means nothing to me as long as I can see that the experience will take me to a new level. I am interested in the unknown, and the only path to the unknown is through breaking barriers, an often painful process. - Diana Nyad
- You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. “I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.” You must do the thing you think you cannot do. - Eleanor Roosevelt
- The strength of a woman is not measured by the impact that all her hardships in life have had on her; but the strength of a woman is measured by the extent of her refusal to allow those hardships to dictate her and who she becomes. ― C. JoyBell C.
- There is a secret in our culture, And it’s not that childbirth is painful, It’s that women are strong. ― Laurie Stavoe Harm
- If there’s one thing you should understand better than the humans, it’s that females should never be ruled out by virtue of strength. Some of us have ways to equalize the equation. ― Dee Tenorio
- We make the things that matter, matter. ― Teresa R. Funke
- Well-behaved women rarely make history. - Laurel Thatcher Ulrich
(A special thank you goes out to Joey D’Agostino, Bowling Green State University student, for his assistance in compiling the list above.)
I have to come clean. I have a coworker, we’ll call her Jane, and Jane wears the most amazing scarves. She has blue ones, red ones, pink ones, black ones. You name it, Jane has a scarf in it. And I am insanely jealous. I see Jane in her dress pants and sweater, which are pretty neutral and conservative, but then she’s so…FANCY…with her scarves. Now, I’m pretty fancy, myself, but in another way. Whereas Jane wears flats, I wear heels. Jane likes pants, I like dresses. Jane has had the same shoulder length hair since I’ve known her (a few years), and my hairstyle is constantly, well, evolving. So I’m me, and Jane is Jane, I get that. But what makes me so envious of her ability to pull off a scarf?? It’s maddening!
When I read about the opportunity to participate in the traveling scarf project, I immediately signed up, mostly so I could have just one day where I wore an amazing scarf. What resulted was quite an experience of self-discovery for this non-scarf wearing lady.
I got the scarf in the mail, with the instructions. I was to wear the scarf for one full day. I was to take a photograph. I was to write a blog post. I was NOT to wear the scarf in place of another piece of clothing (seriously? People do this?). After reading through the rules, I realized that I haven’t the slightest idea how one wears a scarf. You want a perfect smoky eye? I can do that. You want to train to run a marathon? I can help you. Wear a scarf? Pardon me but, what? Could this be why I’m so green with envy over Jane and her scarf collection?
I Googled “how to wear a scarf” and got about a bazillion hits. The first one contained a video, which I was grateful for. I watched as the model demonstrated ‘The Modern One Loop,” The Bunny Ear,” “The Double Rainbow,” and more. I opted for the “Cowboy Bandana” method (mostly because I had seen Jane wear HER scarves like this).
The next day as I was getting ready for work, I tied the scarf around my neck and started getting my things ready for the day. I thought about what my partner and I would have for dinner. Checking the refrigerator, I thought, “Looks like Lean Cuisines since I haven’t been to the store. (Well, that and I don’t know how to cook).” Next, I looked around our apartment and saw workout equipment and running shoes strewn about. I run a personal training business and sometimes after I get home late, I just throw my stuff everywhere. “Wow, I hope no one stops by today. Our place is a disaster and I’m a horrible housekeeper,” I thought. I flipped on the TV and there was a segment on the morning news about busy mothers balancing their time between motherhood and their careers. As a childless, thirty-something, I thought, “Geez, these women are superheroes. I don’t even have kids and I can’t keep it together like they can.”
And then, it hit me. The reason I am so intrigued by Jane and her scarves is because Jane represents everything that I am NOT. Jane is married, as am I, but she cooks dinner, bakes treats for her partner’s ‘guys’ nights,” keeps a very clean and beautiful home, is planning to have a huge family, has a career, has hobbies like painting and ceramics, has a sweet demeanor, and on and on. I, on the other hand, cannot cook, hate the grocery store, have baked maybe one time in my life, cannot bear the thought of children, rely on my partner for all things housework, can be pretty salty and sassy, and don’t have a single extra minute for a hobby. I have my day job, my night and weekend job as a personal fitness trainer, and what little time I have in between, I study for the biology class that I’m taking online or do my own workouts at the gym. Again, I get it- Jane is Jane and I am me but Jane also represents what I have always seen as the “ideal” working, married woman. She does it all. And in my mind, I don’t fit that mold. In fact, my mold came from a completely different factory, probably located on another planet. So, what’s the big deal?
The big deal is that all this time, I thought that Jane was BETTER than I am. She’s better because she takes care of her partner, she’s better because she knows how to make an awesome peanut butter pie. She’s better because, for goodness sakes, she knows how to wear scarves. But why is that the litmus test of what makes a woman valuable? You know- until this point, I hadn’t examined that. And now, well, it’s not.
I am more valuable than I can even imagine. I am smart, I am strong, I am savvy, and I am personable. I am funny and sarcastic. I know how to train someone to turn around their declining physical health. I know who to comfort a crying student. And I know how to apply red lipstick like a champ. I may not be Jane, I may not know how to wear a scarf, but I. AM. AMAZING.
- Kayla Nuss
Surprises. Sometimes they are the small moments in a week that can change your attitude and the entire direction of your day or week. The scarf arriving in the mail was a small surprise that changed my outlook completely. Despite knowing that I had confirmed my participation in the Traveling Scarf Program, I was utterly surprised to receive it so quickly. Also, when I got it, I was taken aback by how uplifted I immediately felt by the prospect of sharing this experience with women around the country. I decided to take my time with the scarf and try to be open to and cherish the small moments in life that can truly make a difference for me in my everyday life.
Quickly I realized how much I missed by not stopping to enjoy the small moments. In the short time of having the scarf, I heard news of an engagement, a nice comment from a student, a retirement, a pregnancy, a fun game with my nieces, a trip to my in-laws, and much more. All of these were things that I may have enjoyed the week before, but with the scarf in mind, I had a new approach. I wanted to savor the small moment, the surprise, as something that would bring me energy and sustain me through challenging meetings and the ever-growing to-do list. It worked!
I hope to keep this mindset going until at least Convention. I am going to use each small moment as a reminder to myself to keep the “scarf perspective” as I move through each day. I can’t wait to read the blogs of other scarf wearers and to see everyone in person at the ACPA Conference. J
SCW Directorate Member