04/30/2014 10:59 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

My Mother Taught Me Hurdles Are Jumpable

This post is part of the Global Moms Relay. Every time you share this post, Johnson & Johnson will donate $1 (per action), up to $250,000, to the Global Moms Relay, to help improve the health and well-being of moms and kids worldwide in support of MAMA, Shot@Life, and Girl Up. Scroll to the bottom to find out more.

Becoming a Mum changed my world. It rocked my world in the best possible way and made me a better person.

I think to be a mother is to be a student. I always thought I would be the teacher, all wise, all knowing -- but of course, life throws us curve balls at every bend, that act as a reminder to always remain humble and open. Becoming a mother made me realize how much I did not know, and how much I had to learn.

deborralee furness

As my kids grow, I recognize the need to truly "know thyself." If I can be the best Mother/Woman I can be, it allows them to truly be who they are.

If I create a safe, loving and supportive environment, my kids can feel confident to explore the realms of possibilities, and then they can create the world they want to live in.

Our mothers play such an important role in shaping who we are. I am blessed to have a mother who continues to show me the way. So much of who we are is because of the nurturing and love we receive as babies. We learn so much in the first five years of our life, so much of that experience shapes who we are as grown-ups. We're like little computers, and all the programming and data is being uploaded in those formative years. It makes me laugh when I observe how my mother does something, and to this day, I see myself in her actions.

When I was growing up in Australia, it was still a little MAD MEN-esque down under. I had a mother who was a corporate woman in a man's world, which wasn't an easy undertaking at that time. She was a single mother (widow) who had to be the provider and nurturer in our family. She had to get creative. She had to be better than her male counterparts to get the job and she had to be able to hold her own in the Boys' Club.

So, in my world, women were dynamic, in charge and all-powerful. I later learned, as a young woman who ventured out into the real world, that wasn't necessarily the lay of the land out there. I found out there was not equal opportunity or equal pay for women. I saw that women didn't dominate the leading roles in the private sector, government, or in the arts or in society in general. Wow, what a concept.

I am thrilled to say that the world has changed dramatically, and WOMEN are leading the way in so many areas of life. Mothers/women still have a long way to go to reach true equality, but thankfully there are many amazing women out there who are leading the charge.

My mother taught me, by example, that you create your own reality, and everything is possible. She taught me that hurdles are jumpable and that as Mohammad Ali once quoted, "Impossible is not a fact." I hope I pass that on to my children and for them to pass it on to theirs.

Thank you, Mum.


You share, they give: Each time you 'like' or share this post via the social media icons on this post or comment below, Johnson & Johnson will donate $1 (per action) up to $250,000, to improve the health and wellbeing of moms and kids worldwide through MAMA, Shot@Life, and Girl Up. $1 provides one day of school for a girl in Guatemala through Girl Up -- a campaign that works to help girls, no matter where they live, have the opportunity to become educated, healthy, safe, counted and positioned to be the next generation of leaders. You can also use the Donate A Photo* app and Johnson & Johnson will donate $1 when you upload a photo for Girl Up or Shot@Life, up to $100,000. You can help make a difference in seconds with the click of your mouse or snap of your smart phone. Share this post with the hashtag #GlobalMoms, and visit to learn more.

The United Nations Foundation, Johnson & Johnson, BabyCenter and The Huffington Post created the Global Moms Relay with a goal of improving the lives of women and children around the globe.

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