Tell us about yourself. Who are you to the world?
I am a country girl who moved to the city. Growing up in a rural community, I thought I was missing out and not smart like family who came to visit from "the city". So, I headed out to find adventure, learn and grow in the city. What I did not realize at the time was I had a solid foundational knowledge, grit, work ethic, kindness, and a strong sense of love. What I lacked was self-love. I have learned to love and honor myself first and foremost. It has not always been easy and is still work in progress, but crucial to living a happy life. I have often over worked myself or sacrificed my personal time for work. I am smarter and wiser now. I have learned that joy is not just about the work being done, but the team of amazing people working together - that is the reward.
If you gave me two sentences to communicate who I am, here it is:
I am a proud mother of two incredible men. I am a wife, and strong, kind, friend. Life is full of surprises; how we learn and grow from these experiences is the real test and self-development.
Was there a moment when you first realized you had moxy?
My Moxy came when our oldest son was diagnosed with Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL). I had to learn how to balance work, family, and curing cancer. In all honesty, I was so overwhelmed and scared. I gave up work for a while, which was hard because I had always planned to be a working mother. I thought, I would never find my way back if I gave it up. Instead, our family was fortunate to allow me to care for our son (and eventually sons) full-time. I managed care for 4+ years of several-times-a-week clinic visits, hospitalizations, drug regiments, all the bills that came with it, isolation due to compromised immune systems, and healing all of us with love and food.
Along the way, I influenced many by using my gift of asking why and how to improve the care process for all? Working on legislation to change the billing process, influencing doctors about how they cared for their patient. Impacting the interaction of maintaining current body health vs allowing it to erode and much more. Changing the way schools view accessibility for pediatric cancer survivors.
Prior to this, I was in the IT Healthcare world. I understood process, data, systems, and developing relationships to share knowledge and improve – the real lesson came when I had to live on the other side of the desk. It taught me advocacy at another level, compassion, and how to use my gifts from another perspective. I wanted to be known as the passionate Mom with great compassion helping all involved grow.
Share something unsuspecting about you?
I became a grandmother in December of 2021. It is the greatest role in the world. The little girl that came into our lives is a joy and inspiration. I get the honor to see her several times a week. I look forward to watching her grow into a beautiful woman.
How do you recharge your moxy?
I enjoy meeting people! While I consider myself an omni-vert. I do find pleasure in connecting with others and sharing our lives. So much learning has come from the She Talks Data community.
However, I do retreat to my cave and once there I hide out near water. Water is healing and cleansing for me. Often you will find me reading a book about history. I believe if we do not study history, it will repeat itself. Currently, I am reading “TailSpin” by John Armbruster and listening to “The Indifferent Stars Above” by Daniel James Brown. I enjoy watching movies. I recently watched “A Call to Spy” on Netflix’s.
Music is a distraction for me, I must admit I love all music. It teleports me to places. For example, my husband recently played Paul Davis. I was back in my childhood. Recently I discovered Pokey LaFarge – Something in the Water. It made me laugh so hard. Don’t we all want to be loved this way?
My family laughs at me, because you will often find me with Zac Brown playing, dancing in the kitchen cooking. Bringing my family and friends together with music, delicious food, and laughter is a great joy of mine. It is a wonderful time that heals and refreshes the soul.