An Open Letter To My Children

This post is a bit past due – however the sentiment still applies.

Mother’s Day is a day to celebrate mothers – yours and those that have mothered you and molded you into the person you’ve become, helped you through times you never thought you would make it through and loved you when you felt unlovable.  Mother’s Day is a bit different for me, I don’t see it so much as a day my children honor me, more a day for me to thank them for making me a mother.

I was 19 when I had my first child, I was figuring out how to be an “adult” when I became responsible for this little human – it was terrifying and wonderful all at the same time.  I have literally grown up alongside my children.  I have often said that having children saved my life, and to this day I believe it is true. These days as we have all made it to so-called adulthood, it is fascinating to see the reflection of my life in their lives and theirs in mine.  I am moved by their desire to help others and their empathy and humanitarianism.  I don’t always agree with some of the choices they make and then I remind them, I made a few decisions my parents weren’t thrilled about either – and we all turned out ok in the end.  Sometimes I say that more to remind myself!

On this Mother’s Day I got to speak to my daughter who lives on the other side of the country while she was in between her 2 jobs.  We just chatted as normal about her weekend fun and how she was beginning to get comfortable in this thing we call the “adult world” and some thoughts about what opportunities are in the days ahead for her.  Later I hopped in a car with my son and we drove out to a beach, had Bloody Mary’s, some lunch and a long discussion about travel, what it means to live life fully.

At the end of the day, this for me was a celebration of my children.  I have been incredibly fortunate to be able to have this front row ticket to watching these two develop and grow – they are the show I have come to see and I am excited every day to see what they create in their lives.  I completely owe my gratitude to them as they have supported me, helped me through times I might not have made it through without them, loved me when I felt unlovable and helped me realize and become the woman I am today.

This Mother’s Day, I celebrate my children who raised me while I was raising them and who love and support me through all my dreams and adventures.  May we continue to grow together and discover all life is meant to be for each of us.

With all my love

-Mom

My Pride &  Joy

Why I Left Corporate America

I just made a phone call that most people would tell me was crazy.  I turned down a great job at a wonderful company for a lot of money (please don’t tell my father!)  At this point you’re asking if I’m crazy or just independently wealthy.  I can tell you I’m neither.  Let me walk you through this decision in hopes that it might provide some insight for choices you face in your life.

A couple years before I came out to California I sat down and put some great thought into the question, if I could work at any company, which one would it be and why?  I came up with two corporations, both were chosen for their culture and my perception of their top level leadership.  I wanted to spend some time in a company that I admired to learn from the inside out ideas I would want to incorporate in running my own company some day.

I applied to the companies I had chosen and after a couple years a job opened and I was hired.  It was a wonderful and eye-opening experience and I learned volumes about how they interpreted work/life balance, treated employees, customers and even the competition.  I obtained much of the information I sought while also building my own business in my spare time.  During this year it became clear that my time was becoming increasingly more important to me, and working for a purpose was creating such joy in my life I wanted to do more than I could fit in my schedule while working for a corporation.

The day came for me to leave the admired company and I was immediately courted by another great company, different from the two I originally considered, but a great company nonetheless.  I was not looking to stay in “Corporate America”, but I believed I had to at least consider the option and see if I could continue to fit both a job with them and my own business into my days.  After several interviews and discussions with the company the offer came in at a great figure with incredible benefits.  They offered me everything I could want and more – everything that is except for time.

It is ironic that they actually helped me come to this decision unknowingly.  I was asked by one interviewer, what makes you get out of bed in the morning?  Believe it or not, the answer was not corporate law, it was to make a difference.  In the final discussion I had with the HR representative, it was asked that I consider if my extracurricular activities were where I wanted to direct my life or was I interested in growing my paralegal career?

My final answer is I am building a career out of my extracurricular activities because to me that is the life I want to live.  My someday has arrived. Today, I coach people through life transitions and help entrepreneurs grow their businesses.  I may make tons of money or I may just get by financially, but I know that as I move through my days I am excited to wake up in the morning.  I know that what I do each day is making a difference in the lives of others.  I know that I am able to spend time with people I love and care about because I am not beholden to some corporate schedule.

The decision to follow the path I feel I am called to and to spend my days in the manner which brings me fulfillment is not a safe choice.  I know I am risking not having the backing of a large company with benefits and financial means.  I do believe I am making a contribution to others by coaching more than I ever could as a corporate paralegal.  If I am correct in my beliefs, I will have plenty of money to live my life as I choose and be in charge of my time.  If I’m not right in this choice, I will have spent some time living life as I wished, and I can go back to a 9-5 job knowing that I tried something I felt compelled to do and made a difference in at least a few lives.

I encourage you to take stock in your current situation and review if you might be compromising one thing you value for something of less importance.  I encourage you to ask the question, what makes you get out of bed in the morning and find a way to do more of that.

It's all about the journey!

Choose your path