I recently arrived back from the U.S. I have jetlag, so am currently writing this at 2am. My America trip came about through manifesting. I wrote down on Facebook that I wanted to go over there and 2 weeks later I was invited. I headed out to Denver, Colorado to stay in an Airbnb with Nicole for 4 days. ( I honestly think Airbnb is the new way forward in terms of staying in other countries) On arrival we headed out to Denver Botanical Gardens with another girl staying there, Bella.
During a thunderstorm the three of us were sat under some trees. Nicole started to tell us her story. She was running late on September 11th. As she was on the ferry heading to work she noticed that there was smoke coming from the tower next to where she worked. She thought that maybe a helicopter had clipped the tower. Apparently that was quite common! As she got off the ferry and started walking towards work in her $400 pair of shoes, she noticed what looked like a huge dust cloud. She felt an arm grab hers and turn her around to face the other direction. The next 5 hours were a blur. She somehow made it back onto the ferry, covered in dust and dirt. At the other end she was hosed down. She didn’t know what to do, where to go or even what was happening as all communication was down. A kind elderly gentleman approached her and offered her a cup of tea at his apartment. She went with him. He tried calling her mum several times on the phone, gave her numerous cups of tea, fed her and gave her some clean clothes. As she drove to her mum’s house she said the highway was eerily quiet. What should have been a 10 minute journey took her over 3 hours. Flags started to be hung from apartment windows. She got to her mum’s house who finally told her what had happened. She then went to collect her son from daycare. When she got there there were still children whose parents worked in the towers, who hadn’t yet been collected. She picked up her son and took several other children home with her to look after until their parents came back. The next day she realised she wouldn’t be going back to work. The second tower she was heading towards had collapsed. She didn’t have a job to go back to. She retrained as a teacher and worked for several years in some of the toughest schools. She currently works as a social worker helping homeless ladies and is an online entrepreneur. Hearing her story, I felt sadness but I also felt inspired. She was part of a hugely traumatic event and she decided she wanted to help others. That life wasn’t about owning a pair of $400 shoes. It was about helping others and living life to your fullest.
Whilst in Denver I visited the Molly Brown house Museum. If you have seen Titanic you might remember this character. She was quite loud and formidable in the movie. Born to Irish Catholics in Missouri, she decided to move to Colorado at 18 to live with her siblings. She married James Joseph Brown and had 2 children. Her husband struck gold and they became millionaires overnight. Margaret Brown spent a lot of time giving back to the community. She ran for Senate several times but didn’t get in as women didn’t have the vote at that time. She was instrumental in helping women achieve the vote. Colorado was the first state where women got the vote. She taught herself several languages and was fluent in them. In 1909 James & Margaret signed a separation agreement. In 1912 Margaret Brown was travelling in Egypt when she received a telegram to say her grandson was ill and she needed to get back home. She boarded HMS Titanic. When it began to sink she was annoyed at how few people were in the boats and started telling the crew they needed to fill them. Apparently, two men then picked her up and dropped her 4ft over the edge into a lifeboat. She was with 22 women and 2 men. She told them that in order to survive the night they would all take it in turns to row the boat to keep warm. When RMS Carpathia came to rescue them, all of the passengers in her boat were alive. Once on board she helped translate for the 3rd class passengers and organised a fundraiser for the survivors of the ship. She wrote down the names of the families who were donating money and a list of the families who weren’t. She then left this list in the dining room hall. Eventually those who weren’t donating decided they wanted to and their names were crossed off the list. Margaret Brown raised $10,000 from this. When she arrived back in New York she raised another $10,000 and was made president of the Titanic Survivors Association. She decided quite late in life that she wanted to be an actress and went off to train in drama. She became the actress that she had always wanted to be. In 1932 she passed away in her sleep.
Having visited the house and reading what little I did about her, she came across as a strong and independent woman in her time. A women who wasn’t afraid to rock the apple cart. A woman who spoke her truth, in a time when most didn’t like to hear the truth. A woman who refused to wear a corset and instead took up boxing in her garage! A woman who I believe inspired many and continues to do so to this day. I left the museum feeling inspired. If Molly Brown could do what she did in the early 1900’s what can we do now?
We can speak our truth.
We can rock the apple cart.
We can inspire.
There are even more inspirational stories that came out of the U.S but I’m going to save them and include them in book number 2! Who inspires you? Do you inspire others? I would love to hear your inspirational stories!