In Greg Mortenson’s book “Three Cups of Tea” Christiane Letinger, a wife to a mountaineer, is quoted as saying about Tara Bishop, Mortenson’s wife, “How many women would have the strength and vision to let the father of their children work in such a dangerous place for months at a time? Tara not only allows it, but supports it, because she believes so strongly in Greg’s mission. If that’s not heroism I don’t know what is.” This quote is one that has stuck with me long after finishing the book.
My husband is a certified firefighter and currently works for the counties EMS system. Being married to someone who works long shifts without knowing if they will make it home at their scheduled time is often difficult. Most of the time there is no text message or call telling me how he is doing or if he will make it home on time. As a result I have always held a special place for women who have spouses in the military or are civil servants and now, Tara Bishop. I often look to them as examples when I do not feel I can be the strength and support my husband needs when he comes home. To me they are the picture of strength and endurance.
While reading “Three Cups of Tea” I discovered these qualities do not just apply to these women but all women. This book traces the realization that Greg Mortenson has on the importance of female education. He states, “five hundred and eighty letters, twelve rams. and ten years of work was a small price to pay” for the moment when one of the female students, Jahan, that benefited from a school he built told him she wanted to be a “superlady.” To her this meant a woman that has no limits on what she does and who she helps, but an individual that can do anything. The education of one female results in her thinking and believing what she desires is attainable.
There are so many “superladies” already out there but we need more. The education of a female creates a ripple effect. They wait to get married, have less but healthier children, and will send them to school. An educated female is also more likely to stay and help the area that she lives in instead of moving elsewhere. My husband any day of the week will tell you I am a “superlady” for putting up with his career but I pale in comparison to the women who have been written about in Mortenson’s book or the ones right now that are receiving an education due to the school supplies being sent over to Afghanistan.
The same girl who boldly stated her plans to be a “superlady” described education to be like water as it is “very important for everything in life.” This course has introduced me to so many strong women and reminded me that the requirements for being a superlady is believing with heart and soul that I am able to create change and produce results to help others. Thanks to this course I am able to accomplish this.