I saw an Instagram post yesterday that I've been thinking about for over 25 hours now. Nashville's former mayor, Megan Barry, has a very inspirational Instagram page. I have followed her for quite awhile now and I recommend everyone follow her.
This is a woman who is a living inspiration. She won the election for Mayor of Nashville and became the first female mayor of this Southern city. Yes, I voted for her. She served the city from 2015 until 2018. She served the city well. But that isn't why I think she is so inspirational. No, there is more to Megan Barry than her accomplishments. Many times it is the public perceived failures and heartbreaks that define an inspirational person more than their stellar accomplishments.
During Mayor Barry's term, she lost her son to a drug overdose in July of 2017. 8 months later she resigned her post after admitting she had an affair with her security chief. The extra-marital affair was not cause to resign, so her opponents made sure to pin her with a felony charge of "theft" because the security chief was a city employee and her opponents made the case that he was participating in the affair on the city's dime. He fudged a few time cards that she later signed and there it was....."proof" of this "scandal".
I'm not debating what is right and what is wrong here. She admitted she signed the time cards (that HE fabricated) and she resigned. She did the "crime" so she took her punishment and moved on. I know there is MUCH more to the story here, but what does it matter? I'm just sorry she chose the wrong guy to turn to for comfort. Personally, I think it was a set-up, but as I said....she took responsibility, resigned and moved on with her life.
She never hung her head in shame. She always walked tall with her head held high. She never hid from the cameras or the press questions. She spoke with dignity and patience even when their ridiculously prying questions were intolerable to a weaker soul. I don't think I could have handled all of it nearly as well as she did. She was an inspiration during those days after the shit hit the fan.....and especially in the years that followed.
What still tickles me today is that she continued to use the same Instagram account that she did when she was serving Nashville as Mayor. You can still find her verified Instagram account: MAYORMEGANBARRY. That small gesture took guts. Like I said, she continues to hold that head high every day.
Her Instagram feed became much more personal in the days that followed her resignation. Yes, she took a break for awhile, but when she came back, she did so with grace, humor, and openness. I thank her for that. What I see now is a thoughtful and beautiful Nashvillian who keeps moving forward. Personally, I think her life is even better now. I can't speak for her, and we have never met, but from the look of her feed, she is having a great life post "scandal". She looks to be free. Free to live, laugh, love, and inspire.
Much like Hillary Clinton who went on to great things after suffering defeat, Hillary and Megan are walking, living, breathing, inspiration. They don't retreat into the shadows after a set-back. They put themselves out there and continue to contribute.
The bravery and determination is amazing.
To answer the original question of this post (and Mayor Barry's post),
"What would I write if I had no fear?"
I would continue to accomplish the goal of keeping this blog going.
I would write more personally about my life.
I would be more honest about the events that shaped me.
I would finally write my family's story - warts and all - no matter who would prefer I kept my mouth shut and my fingers to myself.
I would WRITE as if NO ONE is reading.
“For us, there is only the trying. The rest is not our business.” ― T.S. Eliot.
That is all.