Fear Less In The Coming Year | Part 1 1



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“My legacy is not in my business. The legacy I leave my children is the woman I have become.”

Thanan, Cambodia

In the last years, I have heard the topic of conversation change from self-interest to a greater emphasis on purpose and significance. Part of that conversation has focused on the idea of ‘leaving a legacy’. And it feels good. It sounds good.

It feels less like what I need to have and more like what can I leave behind for others. And there is much to like about the new conversation.

But I was still surprised by my interpretation of ‘legacy’ when meeting with Thanan, my friend and a businesswoman in Cambodia. Coming from very humble beginnings, she has established a thriving silk business, employing twenty women. It’s inspiring. So sitting at dinner I asked her if her daughter would join in her in the business. ‘No’ she answers decisively. I followed up by asking if her son would take it on? ‘No’ she again responds. I look surprised and ask, “Are you disappointed that your legacy will not continue?” She was taken aback and with barely a pause replied, “My legacy is not in my business. The legacy I leave my children is the woman I have become.”

What else needs be said?

We are kinwomen. You are our kin.


About Kelley

Kelley is a speaker, author, overseas aid worker and perpetual student. She is passionate about women and gender issues, both in the local and international context, which underpins her enthusiasm for kinwomen and its contribution to women ‘living their finest life’. In 2014 Kelley completed a Masters in International and Community Development before establishing The Foxglove Project. Foxglove is a registered charity focused on supporting international development projects that are sustainable and driven by indigenous leadership. Kelley’s paid work requires her to travel extensively to evaluate and support projects supported by Australian funds. This experience and networking enables Foxglove to partner with outstanding overseas agencies delivering real opportunities for the poor and vulnerable to lead independent self-determined lives. Kelley combines these passions with a love of family and faith. Across more than 30 years of marriage, Kelley and her husband have worked through many of the challenges of building a relationship while raising three sons. Their boys have now finished high school changing the dynamics of family life and relationships. One of her great joys is sharing parenting lessons and learning from good and bad (sometimes disastrous) experiences. She uses humour and common sense to talk about the everyday challenges facing parents in today’s context.


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