Two months ago, a woman was silenced. She was told to stop speaking, and yet she continued. A man recounted the situation, (I won’t say his name, as this is not really about him),

“She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.”

And in that moment, women around the world felt the lump in their throat rise up and come tumbling out with a loud HELL NO. We repeated the phrase, “Nevertheless, she persisted.”

It became an affirmation.

Of course we will persist.

A couple of weeks later, Aimee Blanchette published this story: “More than 100 women pack Mpls. tattoo shop to get inked with ‘Nevertheless, she persisted” in the Minneapolis Star Tribune. A large group of women, many whom I know, all had the same tattoo inked in the same shop, on the same day. The script was designed by Chelsea Brink and the event was organized by Nora McInerny.

Now that’s some serious persisting.

I felt called. And two days later I was in the same tattoo shop with my friend and colleague Katie, who was also called.

The words she persisted speaks to me on many levels. It’s about having a voice and using it. But it’s also about personal drive to reach my goals and not giving up. It means getting up when I’ve been knocked down. It means enduring. Evolving. Letting go of things that are too heavy and searching and reaching for new things that can help me. It’s about choosing to live. And live fiercely. It’s about strength.

And now I see it every day on my arm. It serves as an inspiration. An urge. A reminder.

We saw at least 5 other walk ins during that one hour trying to get the same tattoo. Our tattoo artist Emily Snow (who also is a genius at microblading brows) said the phone had not stopped ringing in two days. The story had been picked up by CNN and the Wall Street Journal.

I have another tattoo, but I’ve never had a matching tattoo with anyone. And so in addition to the meaning this ink has for me personally, it also gives me a sense of community and bonding with hundreds of other women, not only in my own office, but across the Twin Cities and around the country. She persisted = we persisted.


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4 Responses to “new tattoo :: she persisted”

  1. Awesomeness, Missy! If I’d been feeling better and had the cash, I would have gotten one too. For all the times men thought I should have kept my mouth shut AND I PERSISTED because that was the kind of woman my parents raised me to be. I may be disabled somewhat, physically, but I ain’t muzzled!

  2. Mary Ann Neuman says:

    Missy. So proud of you. You are a welcome member of the Persisterhood.



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