As International Women’s Day approached I found it profoundly challenging to pin point the woman who inspires me most – so I decided to think about what it meant to me to be a woman.
Being a woman is a challenge, it’s awkward (bra management alone) and it’s incredible. Standing up as a proud woman can be vulnerable but that is what I am and I would not be able to stand up were it not for the ocean of support from the incredible women in my life.
So my inspiration is to the women around me – all of them – but today I want to bring forward the women of Whiffle Pig. This company was started off the genuine love and support of a friendship between Rachel and I, since then we have become (purely by accident) a female led company. The women who have joined us blow my mind every day. Not only do they walk into the lives of our patients and make them feel like they have been cuddled beyond breath, they do this no matter what is happening in their lives. The wonderful Whiffle Pig ladies come in smiling after finding out a friend or relative has died, over coming crippling anxiety to catch the bus to the wards, whilst trying to make sure all of their children are fed, waters and happy and through every weather manageable without even a sniff or a whine. I have not known them to have a day off sick (without force) and their strength and kindness fills me with warmth everyday.
So today, on International Women’s Day, I dedicate it to the empowering women of Whiffle Pig – thank you.
Annie Pig x
I am very happy that I will be delivering creative activities to Derby families this International Women’s Day at an organised event, with my daughter and wonderful Whiffle Pig artists. Thinking about this event has made me think about the women who have inspired me. Growing up I was inspired by many female musicians and artists, but one who has stuck with me since I was 15 is Kathleen Hanna, not only because of her creativity, but because of her attitude – as a shy person, I have always found confident women to be something to aspire to be! Another lady who has of course had a huge influence on my life is my mum – although we are very different in many ways, she has always tried to support me and is constantly kind. So many happy memories with my mum, possibly one of the most important things she has passed on to me is the necessity to encourage ‘wonder and awe’ for children, something I strive to do with my own children and with the participants I meet through the Whiffle Piglets project.
My inspiration is my Nanna, she may not be a big figure in history (even though she is my link to the royal blood line) she’s inspires me everyday. She has taught me what not to put up with but more importantly… How to stay young. My true inspiration Janet Sheehan.
Pictured below is my friend Annie, she is a woman I admire for eleventy billion reasons. She is a wonderful mother, friend and person in general. She is hilarious, wonderfully Bonkers and the most selfless woman I’ve ever known.
She was my right hand woman, rock and sanity during a very difficult time in my families life even though she was fighting her own personal battle.
She remains my friend now, and always will, as we work together within her company to improve people’s lives on a daily basis using kindness manners and laughter.
International Women’s Day to me means ‘Bravery’ more than anything else. Being confident in myself and my abilities is something that is a continuous battle for me and I’m sure for many other women also. Having the bravery to recognise it, acknowledge it and gradually work towards conquering it is a personal goal. Working for Whiffle Pig has been the perfect tool to help me face this battle head-on with friends, colleagues and workshop participants showing me that each triumph, however small, means a huge amount to their daily lives. Seeing other people battle daily with debilitating illness, injury and their own personal obstacles certainly puts life into perspective and makes me feel so incredibly proud and privileged to witness their bravery first-hand, seeing and feeling it impact not only myself but others around them. Thank you mum for showing me how it’s done. Be brave, Go with the flow and MASTER IT!
My inspirational woman is Shirley Temple – after using her success as a child actor – her role as a breast cancer awareness pioneer in later life may have saved thousands of lives.
“Speak up about the issues that affect you: you’ll probably find out that you are not alone and may save a life in the meantime.”