女大律師寫平凡婆婆的偉大

250字短文得了國際女性領導者年會首獎

by Mr. 6 on September 24th, 2008 

這篇essay的主角是作者的「婆婆」,也就是她的老公的親媽媽,一個平常在外衝鋒陷陣的女律師,來寫她的每天在家煮飯洗衣的婆婆,250字竟然蔓開了一個奇妙的婆媳話題。

不,不只是婆媳,還包括職業婦女與家庭主婦的話題,以及該把老人小孩丟在養護院還是自己照顧的問題,竟然用一篇250字的平鋪直敘的essay,讓大家啞口無言,並且感動

現在來看看這篇essay的粗略翻譯:

我是一個職業導向的新時代女性,所以,第一次與我這個家庭主婦婆婆見面時,完全無法理解她的感受──她在40歲就放棄工作,來照顧她重病的母親還有她唯一的小孩(也是我的老公)。當時我仗著青春的自大,認為她所謂的無私的態度,還有她每天幹著煮飯洗衣、照顧家庭成員、開車送他們上下班(這是美國主婦一定要做的),已經都是老時代的事了,她的作為,完全不在我對於「成功」的定義中。

直到我自己第一個小孩出生了,才開始感受我婆婆堅軔的生命力。小孩一出生就不幸有心臟方面的問題,顯然我必須放棄我的律師工作,不然就得將可憐的小孩丟到令人不放心的托兒所去,這時候,我的婆婆適時伸出援手,主動要求幫忙,幫我在家煮餐,更重要的是她教我禱告和心理上的支持,常與我在嬰兒臭尿布上共飲一杯葡萄酒談心解愁。我婆婆的幫忙,讓我不但可以繼續上班,反而還再開了一間小公司,現在已有六個員工了。

愁雲散去,現在我的小孩已經健康了,我也又添了一個女兒。她長大後,顯然也要面臨同樣的選擇,要家庭,要工作,還是兩者?

我的婆婆顯然選擇了前者,她是24小時的關懷者,她照顧著我生病的公公,為我們家建立了一個穩固的河床,也教了我,成功不只是來自銀行的存款數字,而是來自你幫助了多少人做到她們想要的夢想。
而我婆婆現在已經80歲,她的成就卻是無聲的;原來,英雄不只是那些突然路見不平而大聲仗義執言的,有時候,她們每日默默的付出,輕輕的托著我們每個人的高度。
完)

整篇文章,只有250個字,真正是「短文」標準定義。而這篇文章顯然不只得到評審團的喜愛,連留言者也都說「寫得好美」,表示希望以後常常在報紙頭條看到這樣的作品!

這位女律師所得到的獎品也很有趣,她將得到三張入場票,主辦單位要求這三張票應該給她自己,給影響她的女人,還有給她想繼續影響的女人,剛好就是照片上面這三位。看著這三位,我覺得,重心是在那個最小的小女孩身上──
當她到了30歲,時代變遷,她會怎麼看這篇essay

那時候,她或許會心思細膩的,又寫了另一篇essay跨時空的呼應她媽媽,那她會寫什麼?

短文是如此平凡,平凡中卻有這麼大的力量.


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原文:http://archives.starbulletin.com/2008/09/22/features/story03.html

art
George F. Lee / glee@starbulletin.com
Melissa Pavlicek, center, won the International Women's Leadership Conference essay competition with a piece about her mother-in-law, Eloise Teves, right. With them is Pavlicek's daughter Shayla Teves.

Mother-in-law’s daily devotions inspire career-oriented woman


Melissa Teves Pavlicek's essay on her mother-in-law has won a competition sponsored by the International Women's Leadership Conference.

Pavlicek, an attorney, lobbyist for small-business owners and executive director of the Hawaii Chapter of the Society for Human Resources Management, answered the challenge to recognize a woman who has inspired her.

Her prize is three registrations to the conference, which is hosted by Gov. Linda Lingle and scheduled for Wednesday at the Waikiki Sheraton. One registration is for her, one for the woman who inspired her, and one for a woman she hopes to inspire.

Speakers include Cristeta Comerford, the first female executive chef in the White House, and Capt. Vernice Armour, the first black female U.S. combat pilot.

Winning Essay
Melissa Teves Pavlicek

As a career-oriented new-millennium woman, I could not fathom my housewife mother-in-law when we first met. She gave up her job at age 40 to take care of her dying mother and her newborn son (now my husband), after thinking for years she might never have another child.

I (with all the arrogance of youth) felt that her selfless attitude, her daily cooking, cleaning and chauffeuring family members, was of a bygone era, not at all measuring up in my definition of success.

With the birth of my own son, I began to see her innate strength. My son was born with a heart condition, which meant I'd have to quit working as a lawyer or put him in day care. My mother-in-law stepped in to help with child care, home-cooked meals, prayers and moral support (and the occasional glass of wine shared over pupu), allowing me to not only work, but to start a thriving business that has grown to six employees.

My son is healthy now and I have a daughter who, growing up, will have the choice to be career-oriented, family-oriented or both.

My mother-in-law is the 24-hour caregiver for her sick husband. She is our family's bedrock. She taught me that success comes not just from a bank account, but from those whom you help achieve their own dreams.

She is 80 now and her accomplishments are unsung. Heroes are not only those who do dramatic interventions, sometimes they are the ones whose daily devotion elevates us all.

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