Life has a way of serving us hardships that can get in the way of our dreams and goals, but what sets apart successful people from the rest, is their determination to keep going. Here are 5 incredible queens who refused to let giving up be part of their vocabulary.
Natalie du Toit
Cape Town-born swimmer Natalie du Toit suffered a leg amputation after being hit by a car when she was 17. This injury would have been enough to make most people give up on their dreams of being professional swimmers, but Natalie was determined to achieve her goals and even did so without the help of a prosthetic leg. Despite her physical limitation, she became the third amputee ever to qualify for the Olympics and inspires aspiring swimmers worldwide with her determination!
We couldn’t have a list of queens who overcame hardships and not include the legendary Oprah. Not only did she manage to survive abuse as a child, but she was repeatedly faced with humiliation and sexual harassment at her first job at a television station. She was eventually fired from this job, but despite the horrible ordeal, she picked herself up and went on to become, well, Oprah. Proving that no matter how many times the world tries to kick you down, you need to keep your head held high and believe in your self-worth and power.
Comedienne Ms. Pat (Patricia Williams) went from a turbulent childhood, teen pregnancy and incarceration to being a successful entertainer. Born to an abusive, alcoholic mother and after being sexually exploited and abused from a young age, Williams became a teen mother herself, at only 14. To make ends meet, she started dealing drugs and this led to her arrest and conviction. After getting out of jail, her criminal record left her unable to find work. Her talent in comedy was what gave her the break she eventually needed. Today, she takes care not only of her own children but also of her siblings’ abandoned children, as she believes that every child deserves a better start than she had.
You may know her as the talented writer who gave us the magical world of Harry Potter, but although J.K. Rowling wrote her first book at age six, it wasn’t until she was in her 30s that she got published. She wrote the famous series of books as a single mother on welfare in Scotland, trying to make ends meet. At the time, she was receiving rejection letters for her books daily and was severely depressed, but she didn’t give up on writing. She went on to sell over 450 million copies, making her the richest author alive.
Rapper, poet and artist Angel Haze has touched millions of people through her lyrics, but the raw emotion she writes with comes from a tough upbringing. Angel was sexually abused for years as a child, and grew up in a sinister cult where she couldn’t turn to anyone for help. She channeled the pain into her art, and found that her message resonated with many others. Her will to keep on going led her to success and recognition as an artist who inspires her fans to overcome their own hardships.
These are just 5 stories of pain and perseverance from some of our favourite queens, but the truth is that millions of girls and young women are overcoming obstacles every day. Are you one of them? Keep going, keep believing in yourself and eventually, better days will come.
If you’re doing through a tough time and feel like giving up, check out this article for some more inspiration, or reach out to us via AskCellCgirl- it’s free, private and you can get one-on-one help with anything that’s on your mind.