Saturday marked the 40th Anniversary of Title IX, the federal law granting women equal opportunity to participate in sports. Back in 1972 (the year after I graduated)only about 300,000 girls were involved in sports. Now over 3 million girls have the opportunity. As you know I am a late bloomer and only started running three years ago. I never thought I would ever be an athlete of any kind.
There were no girls' or women's sports when I was in high school and college in my area. (If you were pretty and popular you could be a cheerleader.)
Running has enabled me to set goals and build confidence. It has been one of the hardest things I have ever done. Starting out I thought I would die after running for one minute! But I kept at it and looking back I kind of laugh at myself. It has been a lot of hard work but also a lot of joy when I see what my body and mind can accomplish together. And sure, the occasional medals are just the icing on the cake.
I look at my two little granddaughters, 7 and 9. They are in dance,soccer,softball and golf this summer. They are having so much fun while learning teamwork and cooperation.
The girls are becoming confident in themselves so it doesn't matter if they miss a putt or strike out. They are enjoying their time with friends. I can see their pride when grandma and papa come to watch.
So I would like to thank the people responsible for passing Title IX. While it wasn't timely for me, millions of other girls and women have benefited. I am so looking forward to the Olympics to watch all of the incredible women athletes!
What's your favorite to watch?