“When the votes were counted, we hoped the symbolic glass ceiling would be shattered forever. I had been thinking about what I wanted to say for a few weeks. My speechwriters Dan Schwerin and Megan Rooney had been working with Jake Sullivan and Jennifer Palmieri on a draft. I knew they also had a draft concession speech under way as well, but I preferred not to think much about that.”- What Happened – Hillary Rodham Clinton
It was the world’s most watched election and possibly everyone stood breathless when the glass ceiling remained high up and he came from down under and scooped the victory.
What Happened is the story of the aftermath of the 2016 American Election and how Hillary lost. She writes in the Author’s Note: “This is my story of what happened. It’s the story of what I saw, felt, and thought during the two of the most intense years I’ve ever experienced.”
I will not review this book from the perspective of the election but request you to take it up as an example of what happens when you lose a fight you fought for so hard and no matter what happened, you did not win.
Hillary is frank and lays her entire journey from start to end and the aftermath. Sometimes in life we invest so much in our projects, work, marriages, families or friends that if we had a chance to take a bird’s eye view this is maybe how it would look like, “What Happened”.
We rally a team of supporters in our lives. Whether it is our family, friends, workers or loved ones. They put in their hours and you work on a common goal. But what if you do not achieve it? This book is an excellent guide of how your choices can lead you somewhere and then everywhere and finally nowhere. She was vying for the top most job in the world, but put yourself in her shoes and you will also see, as she writes “too often we fail to think big enough or act fast enough and let opportunities for change slip away. Or we don’t have the patience to see things through.”
It takes a lot of self awareness to share so openly. In the chapter titled “Trolls, Bots, Fake News and Real Russians”, she writes “I know some will dismiss everything in this chapter as me trying to shift blame for my loss in 2016. That’s wrong. This is about the future.”
What kind of today are you living in? Which yesterday were you struggling in? What will you make future like?
As a woman, I remain inspired by her story and yes sometimes it does not work out but one must always try, you never know.
My favourite part is the concession speech in the Chapter “On Being a Woman in Politics”, she writes:
“Early on the morning of November 9, when it came to decide on what I’d say in my concession speech, I remembered those words. Inspired by them, I wrote these: ‘To all the little girls who are watching this, never doubt that you are valuable and powerful and deserving of every chance and opportunity in the world to pursue and achieve your dreams.’
A definitely good read, check it out: http://www.simonandschuster.com/books/What-Happened/Hillary-Rodham-Clinton/9781501175565