How does a born optimist stay optimistic? Reading the news each morning, it seems harder to remain hopeful. Our current predicaments – our planet, our politics, the pandemic – feel practically overwhelming.
“When I started counting my blessings, my whole life turned around.” -Willie Nelson
The global pandemic has produced profound suffering and dislocation for so many, yet I’ve been one of the fortunate ones, simply deprived of my primary distractions – travel, live entertainment, time with friends. For me, the pandemic demanded unasked-for time for reflection and introspection.
“Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.” -Robert Brault
Almost 30 years ago, I joined Debi’s dream of building a truly different company – an advisory firm with an unwavering commitment to its values: to Make Life Better for clients, employees and their families, and for our community. And over that time, I achieved everything I could possibly have hoped for. Of course, I didn’t do it alone.
“We must find time to stop and thank the people who make a difference in our lives.” -John F. Kennedy
As many know, I have been gradually scaling back my BSW advisory role for several years now. While this has invited space for new opportunities, it has also presented an intriguing question: What to do when our dreams have come true? The answer for me was: “Keep dreaming!” I knew it was important for me to remain in service, but I was ready for a new direction. After four decades of helping the most fortunate, I was being called to begin helping the most vulnerable.
“The more grateful I am, the more beauty I see.” – Mary Davis
Over the past year I have become a fully trained Hospice Volunteer with TRU Community Care, working in the in-patient unit for hospice patients. This is perhaps the least glamorous, most emotionally challenging, and most meaningful work I have ever done. After a full shift of providing care and support to patients and families, I am still struck by the thought that I am receiving as much as I am giving. This is a path I do not see myself turning away from, which brings me full circle.
Beginning next year, I intend to fully retire my advisory role at BSW. It’s time, and although bittersweet, I’m ready to fully embrace the next chapter. BSW will always be in my blood. Whether as shareholder, mentor, or friend, I still intend to stay connected to this exceptional place. How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard!
There are so many incredible individuals and families I’ve been fortunate to work with and so many exceptional colleagues I’ve been privileged to work beside. For those of you whom I have not yet personally reached out to, that I will do. I’m looking forward to speaking with you sometime soon.
“If the only prayer you said was thank you, that would be enough.” – Meister Eckhart.
So, as we approach this Thanksgiving holiday, allow me to leave you with this final thought:
What are you grateful for today?
I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. – Maya Angelou