Remembering Betsy

Mom5 I’m writing this week’s post on a date that is both meaningful and purposeful -- August 27.

It’s on this very date 66 years ago today that my mother, Betsy, came into the world. She would leave it just 43 years later, tragically and unexpectedly.

And so I dedicate this post to her, a woman who taught me what it really means to live in the spirit of generosity and kindness, of concern and compassion, of laughter and of love.

Compassion is something that came quite naturally to Betsy. She loved helping people and so her choice to pursue nursing couldn’t have been a more perfect fit. What propelled her to make that career decision is what speaks volumes about the person she was.

Her brother Paul died at an even younger age, 22, a staggering loss for any family. Feeling helpless watching Paul fade away from cancer, Betsy decided she would make it her life’s work to help other people. And so she did. She became a nurse just two years after Paul died and stayed in that career up until the time of her own death, some 15 years later.

As I was struggling in my 20’s and 30’to pursue a career that really fit (as opposed to one that just paid the bills), I needed only look to my mother’s extraordinary example to find my way. And it’s truly no accident that at the age of 43, I found my perfect fit when I chose to pursue coaching as my life’s work, leaving behind a 20-year career in sales & marketing.

(Nursing never could have worked for me since the sight of blood makes me weak!)

It’s an amazing space in which I have the privilege of working with people, a space that allows for generosity and kindness, for concern and compassion and yes, even laugher and love.

Who are your guideposts in this life, whether they’re with you now or have gone on before you? In your own search (perhaps struggle) to find your way, is your lighthouse right there in front of you? Are you waiting (and waiting) for the fog to lift or are you pressing on, despite the storm(s)?

Look-up for the searchlight. And listen for the fog horn. It’s all there, well within your reach.

When I look-up and listen, I see a bright light shining and hear a voice inside me saying, “Thank heaven for Betsy.”