I am honored to introduce one of my favorite women. Ana Lewis, the founder of Women on the Verge.
Ana is an inspiration to women everywhere, bringing women together to help and support each other. Her love, joy of life and care for all those she touches shines light on us all.
On this the second anniversary of WOMEN ON THE VERGE, we are celebrating the diversity and courage of women everywhere. Thank you Ana.
1.) What prompted you to start Women on the Verge?
I believe in women - as nurturers, as friends, as sisters. We typically nurture and support the important people in our lives: husbands, children, parents, etc.. What happens when we nurture each other? Women on the Verge happens. We blossom, we grow and we are fed - in the same ways that we have been feeding others. It busts the stereotype of women in the competitive settings all to shreds - and I love that!
2.) Two years ago when you began Women on the Verge did you believe that it would grow to include so many women from all walks of life and all cultures?
Yes, actually I did. And I also believe that we have only begun to scratch the surface. Women thrive in a supportive atmosphere with other women. The Internet is a physical example on how we are all connected. When we exercise and feel that connection, we thrive.
3.) Did you grow up surrounded with what is the best in women, seeing firsthand that women could be nurturing to each other?
I would say yes and no to this. My mother and her sister were very close and supportive - and I always yearned for a sister for myself to have that kind of connection. My mother was also very, very good at nurturing other people, but quite frankly, she continually put herself in last place. I would have liked to see her supported in the same way she supported others. I think that it may have even lengthened her too short life (she died at the age of 46 years old).
4.) Do you see women in today’s culture being able to maintain their competitiveness while still sustaining their natural nurturing abilities?
This is such a tough question. I think we have to really, really try to remember who we are as women. We are still trying to gather our bearings in a male dominated world. What works for men is not necessarily what works for women. I think that as long as we accept ourselves and focus what makes us grow in the world, we will be able to balance support and competition. That will be a beautiful time for us and will open avenues to us that we had no idea existed before as they will be brand new.
5.) Your belief that women can be more nurturing of each other has made a decided impact on thousands of women. What helped you to understand that this was what women’s true nature could become in the face of today’s society?
I simply listen to what it feels like when I nurture and when I am nurtured by others. Simple things, such as knitting a prayer shawl for one of my closest friends in celebration of being a grandmother, is a two-fold love experience: I felt love for her while doing it, she felt love in return. I think that kind of simplicity in doing what feels right, is where we need to be and put our energies.
6.) When you have your monthly radio show what message are you trying to bring to others?
We are digger deeper into our monthly topic. Plus, it's really fun for me to be able to talk to these phenomenal women. They are fearless in their opinions, they make me laugh and I admire them so much.
7.) Women on the Verge has over the last year made me laugh, cry, learn and find a keener understanding of other women’s successes trials, tribulations and joys. Each topic is geared
toward helping all women find a deeper knowledge not only of others but of themselves. How do you pick your topic of the month?
Most of the topics have been emailed to me by women in the membership. And, I agree with you so much. It seems like when we focus on a topic, I see it everywhere. The learning process has transformed me and my life.
8.) In the last two years has there been anything you would have liked done differently?
I think that my comfort zone has typically been staying in the background, quietly working by
myself and my dog at my side. Women on the Verge has been helping me come out of that comfort zone - which has been a little bit of a challenge for me. I think a couple of years ago, I put a little bit of pressure on myself to act like I am okay being "out there", when I am not always. This past year, I have learned that I can simply be myself - some days I am quiet and some days I am noisy - and the community is still going to be here - not only for me, but most
beautifully for each other. I guess it's my own lesson in self-acceptance.
9.) If you had one wish for Women on the Verge what would it be?
That we bust the ugly stereotypes to smithereens. That the daughters of tomorrow are told stories of how we actually used to compete against each other in a non-productive manner - and look how far we have grown! I hope that supporting each other through our ups and downs in life become the norm and not an exception.
10.) Where would you like the movement to be year or two from now?
I would like to meet every single member in person. I would like for each of us to have our messages spread in ways that showcase how each of us can have success - not by competition, but by sisterhood. I would like for us to live our talk out loud and bask in the light of our connection and feel the strength of it every day.
Thank you Marta! You have truly made me think. :)
Author & Poet
Marta Moran Bishop, is an author and poet. Ms. Bishop writes many books for children as well as for more mature audiences.