A legacy of persistence and determination: learning from Mum and Calvin Coolidge.

In life's intricate tapestry, the threads of persistence and determination are interwoven to create remarkable stories of triumph against all odds. As we reflect on our personal journeys, we often find that the tenacious spirit of those who've gone before us has left an indelible mark. This article is a tribute to the power of resilience, drawn from the life of a remarkable individual and the timeless wisdom of Calvin Coolidge.


Growing up, I had the privilege of witnessing firsthand the transformative effects of persistence, creative problem-solving, and an unwavering "never give up" attitude. My mother was the embodiment of these qualities, living each day by a simple yet profound motto: "Never give up!" Her office door bore testament to this mantra, adorned with Coolidge's famous quote on persistence, a beacon of inspiration for everyone who entered. It was also accompanied by this image which is ingrained in my mind forever more:

Coolidge's words, "Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence," became more than a quote on a wall; they became a philosophy that guided every facet of my mother's life. She navigated challenges with the grace and strength of a true trailblazer, leaving an abundance of success and impact in her wake.


From building an award-winning business to facing legal battles that would daunt even the bravest, my mother's commitment to her goals was unwavering. The most awe-inspiring example came when she stood against a colossal gravel extraction company threatening our beloved valley community. Through sheer determination, she rallied the community, held her ground, and safeguarded our environment and way of life.


But it wasn't just in the business world that my mother's persistence shone. Her dedication to ensuring my brothers and I were sent to schools of her choice, having been a teacher herself, demonstrated the creative out-of-the-box lengths to which she would go to secure a brighter future. Her sacrifices exemplified that some battles are fought not only for personal gain but also for the ones we love.

I'm in constant awe as I reflect on her journey – a journey that propelled her from being the daughter of a Kiwi accountant to assuming the esteemed position of the lady of an English country estate. Her evolution was nothing short of remarkable, a tapestry woven with threads of unyielding determination and a 'Never give up' mantra that fearlessly silenced any whisper of self-doubt or imposter syndrome, sending it cowering back to the shadows where it belonged.


Yet, her legacy of persistence reached its zenith in her battle against cancer. Against all predictions, she defied medical odds, turning what seemed like a final chapter into an extraordinary epilogue. Her resilience in the face of adversity illuminated the boundless strength that resides within each of us, reminding us that the human spirit is a force capable of transcending even the darkest of challenges.


Coolidge's sagacious quote underscores a profound truth:

"The slogan 'Press On!' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race."

The depth of this statement was etched deeply into the tapestry of my mother's life story. Through her commitment to her values and the challenges she embraced, she showcased how genuine growth can often emerge from adversity and how life's most meaningful victories are born out of persistence.


As I continue my journey, I carry with me the legacy of my mother's determination and the timeless wisdom of Coolidge's words. Their stories serve as a compass guiding me to understand that success transcends innate talent and mere luck; it lies in the ceaseless pursuit of our goals, irrespective of the odds. Like them, I aspire to stand as a testament to the transformative power of persistence, to stand up against challenges, and to illuminate the path for those who follow.


In this world of fleeting trends and instant gratification, the stories of those who press on, who refuse to give in when faced with adversity, stand as beacons of hope and inspiration. Let us be reminded that the challenges we encounter are not mere obstacles, but the crucibles in which our character is honed and our spirits forged. By embracing persistence and determination, we foster the potential to achieve greatness, leaving an imprint on the fabric of our lives and the lives of those who inherit our legacy.