I'm Not Giving Up: "The Aksita Shoe"

“You can’t do it. There are no funds available for this project,” says Mr. Boss sternly. I throw my head back in disbelief and put my hands to my face. I can’t believe this, I’m thinking. The event is already on the calendar and everyone knows about it. Three months away and now this...

“So, the only thing holding me back from doing this event is funds. Is that what you’re saying?” I ask. I know he can hear the frustration in my voice.

“Yes. My hands are tied here, Franchesca. Perhaps we can plan something for next year,” he responds as he puts on his reading glasses and takes out a pen to jot down notes on his yellow notepad.

I can’t help it anymore. I feel the heat rising in my chest. My ears are getting hot and my palms are sweating. I can’t hold my tongue anymore. “And then next year you’ll tell me the same thing, right? Because that seems to be the issue every time. There’s never ‘money’ for these outreach events, but there’s always ‘money’ for everything else around here.” I'm starting to raise my voice and I can feel it shaking.

He quickly looks up at me from the top frame of his glasses. I can tell he’s annoyed with my reaction. He takes off his glasses and sets them down slowly, then stares me straight in the eyes. All of a sudden, he lets out a soft, slow chuckle. “You’re just like your mother,” he points and wiggles his finger at me. “Too stubborn to quit before you get yourself into trouble. Don’t push it." He puts his reading glasses back on and gets back to his notes.

I turn away for a brief moment and shake my head. I can’t believe this…

I look back at him. “Give me one month. I'll raise the money we need for this event. If I don’t have it in a month, we will cancel the event. Deal?”

He gives me one long stare and lets out a deep sigh as he leans back into his arm chair. He finally responds, “Fine. One month. That’s all you get.”

And that’s all I need. In less than a week, I assemble a team to help me raise the funds. We sell cooked meals, wash cars, call companies to sponsor, and ask for individual donations. In a month’s time, we collect more than we needed for the event.

A month later, I’m back in Mr. Boss’s office. I put the envelope with the money on his desk. “Looks like the event is happening,” I said smiling. He let out a quick laugh and shook his head in disbelief. “You really are Francisca’s daughter.”

My mother always tells me that I can accomplish anything I set my mind to. “If you want something, fight for it, no matter what the cost,” she tells me. Whether it’s a business plan, graduating, losing weight, or whatever else, you can do anything you set your mind to do. Nothing is stopping you from accomplishing your dream. Circumstances and people will tell you that “you can’t,” “you don’t have what it takes,” or “you don’t have the funds.” But none of those things should discourage you from pursuing your goals. In fact, they should motivate you to create opportunities and stretch outside of your comfort zone.

Yes, your journey to success will have some bumps in the road, but that’s what makes it worthwhile! If you don’t have to work for it, it doesn’t mean much in the end. Achieving ‘that thing’ you want so badly is worth so much more to you when you’ve got a story to tell about how you achieved it. So, enjoy the journey while you’re at it, and don’t let anything - including yourself - stop you! Be your number one motivator and remind yourself every day why you’re pushing on. Every day you’re one step closer to telling your story. And, boy, will it be worth telling!

**Fictitious names are used in this post to maintain privacy. 

Each post is named after a pair of "fictitious" (for now) shoes. For this post, I chose the name "Aksita," which means permanent and unfailing.