There are many people who influence our lives and inspire us. They can be people who are closet to us, those who we only have brief encounters with, complete strangers, or those who we see portrayed in the media. Many people have inspired me throughout the years.
There are 2 people who inspired me the most. My mom and dad. I am grateful to be blessed with wonderful parents. They are the ones who have always taught me I can be anything I wanted to be. They are also the ones who taught me to believe that everything will take care of itself. There is one story my mom always tells that sticks in the forefront of my mind. My parents had just moved to Medicine Hat; I was a baby and my dad was starting a new career as a promotional advertising salesman. My dad came home one evening and my mom told him our stove was broken and they would need to get a new one. My dad said they couldn’t afford a new one at the moment. The next day my dad came home and told my mom she could get her new stove as he had made a sale that day that would pay for it. They have always taught me that if there is something you really want, you will always find a way to obtain it.
While I was growing up, I would have classified myself as a daddy’s girl. My dad was always there. He always got up in the mornings with my sister and I to have breakfast with us. This is where I’d share my wild dreams I had the night before. He is also very patient. He was the one who taught my sister and I how to drive. I still admire him today for having the patience to deal with my grandparents; and he adores playing with his own grandkids and reading stories to them just as he had with my sister and I.
My mom has always been very supportive of everything I did. At the same time, she was also my greatest critic. She was always pushing me to be my absolute best. With the criticisms aside, she was also a great encourager. When I was in grade 10 I really wanted to be on the high school basketball team. I had gone to the tryout, and I ended up not making the cut. I was totally devastated. I was not the most athletic person around, but this was something I really wanted. When my mom came to pick me up and saw the tears, she told me to go and talk to the coach to find out what I could do to make the team the next year. I gathered up my courage and talked to the coach. He gave me some pointers and I went to basketball camp, the next year, I made the team. Had my mom not encouraged me to talk to the coach, I would have put that dream behind me in the bucket of unfulfilled dreams. When tough times come, my mom is always the one who is telling me to “keep my chin up,” and is the one who encourages me to have the courage to stand up for what I believe in.
My husband has also been one who greatly inspired me. When I first met him, I had some self-esteem issues. I was not confident in cooking or playing the piano in front of people. He taught me how to enjoy cooking, including making things without recipes. He also helped me to open up and start playing the piano in front of people. I was so nervous of making mistakes and did not want to play in front of others as I knew I was not perfect. Ry would stand outside the front door and listen to me play as he knew the moment he opened the door, I would stop. Now I even play silly little songs with my own daughters and enjoy watching them dance.
Ry has also been a great supporter of mine. He has stood by my side through good and bad times. And we share a special bond by standing by each other’s side. When we were organizing our wedding I really wanted to see a personal trainer. We ended up asking if we could do a couple’s session, and our trainer agreed. He saw the special spark that Ryan and I shared that helped us motivate each other. As part of our training session, we had a nutrition session. Ry really enjoyed the nutrition sessions and wanted to actually take the nutrition course. I told him to go for it and stood by his side while he took the courses. He as also been the one who has taught me the importance of doing things together, asking for help, and learning to relax a bit and not take everything so seriously.
There was a total stranger who had inspired me one day. A few years ago I was looking to start my career after finishing university. When I had finished university, I had worked a couple of years at the company where I worked while going through school. It was a great company to work for, but there were not very many opportunities for advancement. It was time to move on. I started applying for different jobs. My degree is in International Business, but I felt like I more wanted to get into accounting. Since I didn’t have much accounting experience, I started applying for admin assistant jobs that had a flair of accounting to them. I was called in for an interview with one company, and the interviewer looked at my resume. He then asked why I was applying for this position, as I was most definitely over qualified. He then asked where I saw myself in 5 years. While I was choking back tears, I told him I wanted to work on an accounting designation. He asked what was holding me back. I decided that nothing was, so I started on my designation. Shortly after that I found a job that was supposed to evolve into a bookkeeping position. I soon discovered that this position was not quite what I expected, so I started the job hunt again. I went to a CGA (Certified General Accountant) networking evening and asked a couple of people there, “How do I get my foot in the door?” They told me to go to a temp agency. I decided to try that. I got placed with no problems, and it gave me enough experience to get my foot in the door. Without that one interviewer asking me where I found myself in 5 years, who knows what might have happened.
Oprah is another person who has inspired me, as she has many people. Years ago I was watching one of her episodes where she was talking about her Angel Network. I felt so inspired I wanted to go out and make a difference in someone’s life. It was Christmas time and I was living at home with my parents while I finished college. I was working part-time, and felt like I had all this extra money as my parents didn’t make me pay rent. After watching Oprah, I decided I wanted to buy a bunch of food for our local Food Bank. I went to the grocery store and bought a case of soup, a case of juice, some hot chocolate, and a case of macaroni and cheese. I then took it to the Food Bank. I ended up getting there right as they were closing. The girl asked if I needed some help bringing in my donation, and I said yes. She came out to my car and asked what I wanted brought in. I told her everything. She asked who it was from, and I told her myself. She was shocked as I was a young lady and many of the clients were people around my age.
From these few examples, you can see there are many people who inspire the best in us. Who inspires you?