On Friday night I sat among colleagues and friends in Dana Point, California, as a nominee at the 3rd Iris Awards ceremony at Mom 2.0 Summit. I felt uneasy in the nervy WILL MY NAME BE CALLED environment, although I absolutely assumed my name would not be called–not because I don’t believe in myself or the project. Considering the project has been around for 6 years and I’d been nominated for the third year in a row, I put my cards on the others–nominees changing the game in huge vital ways–and didn’t think too much about an acceptance speech.
Then I heard my name! And needed an acceptance speech (thanks A LOT Tom Hooper for using up “Listen To Your Mother” in your Oscar acceptance for The King’s Speech). I brought my astonished self and ill-prepared words of thanks to the stage to accept a very weighty award (weighty in name, actual heft, and symbolism–all).
I thanked the thousands of people who’ve bravely shared their most personal stories, changing the motherhood game at our auditions and live shows. I gave tribute to 100 local LTYM director/producers who dedicate over 6 months of work annually to claim their own stories and–most important–make space for the voices of others, changing the game in their community. I urged a room of influencers sitting with me in that very posh hotel on the ocean to share their power with and for others, given that the majority of folks in our home towns don’t have the privilege of a blog, or an audience following/listening to them, or a very posh hotel by the ocean full of creative people. I thanked and now need to profusely thank once again the LTYM North American team of Deb Rox, Stephanie Precourt, Taya Dunn Johnson and Melisa Wells who’ve kept me and LTYM going and growing, and who’ve enabled us to work towards our game-changing mission with success and FUN. Finally, I recognized LTYM’s North American sponsors BlogHer and Luvs for years of loyal financial support and partnership.
Fun fact: as I planned to say a few words about my fellow nominees, the slide with all their names disappeared and I went blank and started muttering. So, I’ll do that now. Ana and Stacey–both as individuals with Blogalicious and We All Grow, and also together with coLAB–you’ve changed the game of women and entrepreneurship. Thank you for making the game board more inclusive and welcoming to diverse women as you’ve built your massively successful names and empires. Katherine your life-saving work for Postpartum Progress is widely known and acclaimed and for good reason, and it was a thrill to see you win Social Campaign of the year for #MeditateOnThis!! ONE, I cheered as you won a 2015 Iris for philanthropic work, and followed along this past year as several of my peers shared compelling photos and stories of their visit to Malawi to #ElectrifyAfrica. Thank you for all you do to help women and families get materials they need to nourish and improve their communities. You find a list of all the 2016 Iris Awards winners here.
LTYM game changing season is NOW!
If you’re reading this and have not experienced a live LTYM show, we still have 17 shows left this season including our 7th annual Madison show at The Barrymore! Stephanie recapped our first two weekends here here here and here, so you can see fantastic photos and quotes. I got to witness the 3rd annual Baltimore show and 1st ever Burbank show and I can tell you the LTYM mission resounds from coast to coast!!!
Speaking of game-changers, do NOT miss our 7th annual Madison show THIS MOTHER’S DAY SUNDAY 5/8 at 3PM with 13 readers who change the motherhood game with their hilarious, heartfelt, powerful and uplifting words.
Thank you, audience both live and online, for changing the game with me. Thank you for cheering me on, for believing in me and LTYM, and for listening and showing up. Deep appreciation to Mom 2.0 Summit, The #IrisAwards, and everyone who voted.
photo by Elizabeth McGuire, Iris Nominee Best Photography