All,

For all of you Readers who have not been following Holly's "Daring Greatly" series from its start, I think it is important to let everyone know that when she uses the phrase "Daring Greatly" that the phrase is based on one of the greatest speeches of all time entitled, "Citizenship in a Republic" delivered by former President Theodore Roosevelt at the Sorbonne in Paris, France, on April 23, 1910.

The Sorbonne, later renamed the University of Paris, is a building in the Latin Quarter of Paris which was part of one of the first universities in the Western world

"Daring Greatly" is a phrase that Teddy Roosevelt used in a passage from that speech, which is now commonly known as "The Man in the Arena" speech. The following is that passage…

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." ~ President Theodore Roosevelt

You can read the full speech, here.

In Story after Story, Holly has shared her battle with weight loss; that of which is her very Arena, which she steps into each day with the tenacity of never giving up. Open-heartedly, she has shared a very personal struggle with such admirable vulnerability that few are those who would have the courage to go there, yet boldly does she go, persisting, insisting, and knowing that win or lose, she has dared greatly.

Unquestionably, and profoundly so, she is the very embodiment of the metaphor that Theodore Roosevelt so powerfully and eloquently spoke of – That of knowing that there is no greater service than to follow her passion and purpose.

Holly truly is our "Woman in the Arena." That she is Autistic, and given its struggle alone, still persists, and will succeed – Not in spite of her Autism, but because of her Autism.

There is an old gospel song written by an indeterminate source during the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s Titled: "We Shall Overcome." Dr Martin Luther King Jr. often and hummed or sang the song in his car after speeches, and I think that it parallels the persistence to succeed in the face of any adversity, to dare greatly, not just for civil rights, but for those who have the unrelenting determination and courage to be "In the Arena."

We shall overcome
We shall overcome
We shall overcome... someday…
Oh, deep in my heart
I do believe
We shall overcome…someday…

We are not afraid
We are not afraid
We are not afraid…today…
Oh, deep in my heart
I do believe
We shall overcome… someday…

Shall Holly overcome her battle within her Arena?

Oh, deep in my heart Lord,

I do believe, she shall overcome…

Sincerely,

Keira Fulton-Lees
Artfully Autistic Advocate for Autism
artfullyautisticpublication@gmail.com

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Artfully Autistic Advocate for Autism, Writer, Editor, Artist, Musician, Owner of the Medium Publication: Artfully Autistic: https://medium.com/artfullyautistic

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Keira Fulton-Lees

Keira Fulton-Lees

Artfully Autistic Advocate for Autism, Writer, Editor, Artist, Musician, Owner of the Medium Publication: Artfully Autistic: https://medium.com/artfullyautistic