“My mother cautioned me never to pick a fight in school, but she warned me even more sternly, that I should never come home crying because someone had hit me and I didn’t hit that person back (and harder). Many would disagree with this advice, and, in a fast-changing world, I found it hard to pass it on to my girls as heartily as my mother had done. But I was a short child (and probably getting shorter as time works its magic), and what my mother’s admonition meant was that I was forced to fight back against mates that were much bigger than me. It didn’t really matter whether it was a fight I could win; if you hit me, I hit back. I was the bookish, tiny, foreign kid with the funny accent—a magnet for bullies, I’m sure, but mates soon learned to not pick on me.
I wish I could say I was fearless; I’m not. But the result of following my mother’s rule was that I did not back away from challenges and confrontations; I still don’t. I’m more afraid of being afraid to face a challenge than of the challenge itself.”
– Ekua Bannerman-Richter
(Lawyer, Business Adviser and health and fitness advocate.)