The Ceiling

Today is International Women's Day.  I was sent this article and had seen it in my social media feeds.

After reading it, which I highly recommend:

I have to admit the closeness to my front door of this article.

I see it in the eyes. Each time. There is an assumption of who I am, how I will speak, how I will be - and I am approached with that assumption.

Then when there is genuine interaction - there is a dawning in the eyes. Sometimes subtle, sometimes overt. It's a realization that they didn't have all the facts. "Wait, she's different. But I don't know how to deal with different, so I won't deal with her at all. Or, hmmmm, I can use her. 
She knows a lot more than I thought. She speaks well."

In my current service, I am the only black female in leadership, on the leadership team and a part of managing the operations of the institution. It has been a masterclass for me in managing my emotions, maintaining my self worth without validation or approval and without seeking those things in a way that would further damage who I am and know myself to be. I have learned a great deal in these 20 years of employment. And ultimately, I am grateful. It has helped me make more sense of my life, of people and of the game we are all playing together - whether we like it, know it or not. 

What's your experience? Can you relate?