The Importance of International Women’s Day
DeLisha Milton-Jones shares her thoughts.
By DeLisha Milton-Jones / @DelishaMJones
Today is International Women’s Day. Obviously, this day is special to women because it’s a day that recognizes women for the talent they possess and our continuous push for equality. I’ve done my fair share of interviews pertaining to this subject matter and have been honored each time.
While eating breakfast this morning, I turned on the television and saw on ESPN a story about a woman named Toni Stone and was instantly flooded with feelings of gratitude.
Lyle Alberga ( her real name after marriage) was the first woman to play baseball in the Negro League for less than $300 a month. She had to go as far as acting and dressing like a man and even being used as a gate attraction in order to play the sport she loved so dearly. She even fought a guy during the game for inappropriately groping her while trying to tag her out. WOW!!
This young lady had talent. Her FIRST at bat moment was against Satchel Paige. Yes, the Satchel Paige. She was a second baseman and was a pretty decent hitter. Oddly enough, her first crack at bat was sent sailing over the very position she played. Despite some under the table antics to increase ticket sales, she held her own and her talents showed greatly.
After watching the special, I started thinking about where we as women have come in the sports world and what mark are we leaving for generations to come. Women such as Toni Lyle give me more reasons to be thankful and work my butt of even more. If not for people like Rosa Parks who not only took a stance for African Americans but for all women, and for Toni Stone cross-dressing just to play a sport, many of us wouldn’t be afforded the wonderful opportunities that we take to heart to this very day.
I feel its my responsibility to pay homage to those that have come and gone before me by giving it my all every time I step on the playing field representing my sport of choice. Their blood, sweat and MANY tears have paved the way for women to have a voice and be a figure of great stature in the world of professional sports.
What type of stance are we willing to take today that will directly affect our tomorrow’s positively? What type of legacy will I leave? These are a few of the questions that I’m left to ponder on and I hope you will do the same.
On another note, I have sad news to report. My team didn’t make the the Euroleague Playoffs. But, we are full steam ahead in preparation for our domestic league playoffs. Our lovely coach has decided to start practicing twice a day on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s.
Yeeeeaaaaaa for me! (totally sarcasm, lol.)
On the positive side, I guess it will be a good way to get into tip-top shape for WNBA training camp coming up very soon. Just think, in less than two months we will back in action.
Until then, enjoy March Madness!
- DeLisha Milton-Jones