I was returning to Los Angeles after 2 days of Strategic Business Planning with Kelly O’Neil when my ability to stand my ground and honor the truth in my heart was tested. A friend dropped me off at the airport parking lot and I was to walk across the bridge to get inside the terminal. A pedestrian walkway to cross the street was closed and a woman in Police uniform was directing traffic, facing me. She held back the pedestrians and allowed taxies to drive by. About 3 minutes had passed, but the woman made no attempt to let the pedestrians cross the street. The crowd was growing on both sides of the road. It was quite cold: 34°F. “Can you be a human being and let us go – we’re freezing,” I shouted. “You have to wait!” She snapped back.
When I was in kindergarten, my father told me: “If someone tries to hurt you, grab the heaviest object around and hit them over the head.” Now, that’s quite an unusual advice to give to your little girl. I remember protesting and saying “What if I kill them?” He said “You worry about that later, if someone endangers you - you protect yourself!” “But I am a girl!” I gasped. “Exactly, and you need to be able to stand up for yourself.” As harsh and unusual as this advice was, it served me tremendously throughout life. In fact, I remember clearly two instances when I had to apply it.