I am interested in anything that empowers women. Maybanke Anderson gave her first public speech on 6th May 1891, at the inaugural meeting of the Womanhood Suffrage League of NSW. The lecture is held in May every year to mark this important historical event and this year the Annual Maybanke lecture was delivered by Ms. Elizabeth Broderick AO, lawyer and recent Sex Discrimination Commissioner for over eight years from 2007 to 2015.
The lecture last night at Customs House entitled ‘Self Care, Part of Women’s Empowerment’, was brilliant. Elizabeth talked a lot about ‘being’ rather than ‘doing’ and that it’s enough just being who we are. We don’t have to be anything, do anything, strive for anything to be of value. I learned these things from someone I met years ago and have always been so grateful for his wisdom.
I think as so many of you approach motherhood, you need to understand this. You can stop all the striving that was so necessary in your careers, and take a step back as you move from public life into the more private home life of mothering.
You will be caring for your babies, but its vital that you care for yourselves as well.
The Maybanke Lecture is a model for resilience and courage, both of which we all need as mothers – my adult children are in their thirties and I still need these two qualities. Elizabeth says that ‘doing things that feed your soul is at the heart of self care’. She said ‘we all want to make the world a better place, simply because we lived in it’
Everyone in the audience resonated with her words. It was one of those lectures I did not want to come to an end. I am so glad I went.
Michelle Gibson, founder YogaBowl, Elizabeth Broderick AO and Juju