People ask, “How do we change the future?”, many generations have had that same question. The reality is, I have learned, we can only find our skill, our talent, our purpose through our challenges and then do that which we are born to do…influence change in our own one-of-a-kind way!
It has taken me fifty-five years to learn what my real purpose is, why I am here. But that is not where I started. My background, education and my thirty-year career has been in government, national defense, aerospace and engineering. Working hard to get those credentials to put behind my name to acquire influence and status, I have risen to be a well-known Applied Scientist in my area of expertise, Knowledge Management.
Without consciously driving it, my life was taking a turn I did not know was happening. Thirteen years ago, my husband was diagnosed with an aggressive blood cancer, and was given just a few years to live. He was blessed to survive that deadly cancer, and we wrote a book about our journey; Adventure, Day One – Seven Positive Strategies When Life’s Journey Gets Rough. At the time, I thought that was my purpose, helping cancer survivors. But I continued to work, my professional career was so important to me. And so I did, work and work and work – so much so, that in 2015, I was constantly traveling across the country and delivering 60 speeches in less than one year.
In the meantime, during the social marketing of my first book, my publicist set up my twitter account. Following many publishers, one day a tweet came across that read, “If you want to change the future, write a children’s book”. And that’s just what I did! That very moment I went to my whiteboard and drew the 7 strategies from my first book, Adventure, Day One, in a way that could be for children and created a character, Sophie G Wanderlin. I spent that night writing the first draft of my children’s book, Sophie G Wanderlin – One of a Kind and was delighted the idea seemed so inspiring. And the very next day…I went back to work, and worked, and worked, until one day, my husband was sick again.
This time, my husband’s cancer was so aggressive that not only did he need to get into remission fast, he would also need a transplant to survive. He said to me, “if we know I am going to die, maybe you should stop working”. My response was, “how about you live, and I retire from industry.” And that’s just what I did! I let go of all that I thought was me, to be his caregiver.
While in the hospital with my husband, I started working on the illustrations for Sophie G Wanderlin. Sophie has turned into a one-of-a-kind adventurer, where all her adventures are in kindness. During the creation of Sophie G Wanderlin I had a vision of twenty years into the future. I was on the stage again, but the audience wasn’t a group of middle-aged engineers, the audience was twentysomething year-olds. They were all wearing rainbow socks, Sophie wears rainbow socks, and they had grown up reading Sophie’s adventures. Because of Sophie, these young people were loving, kind and respectful.
While sitting in the silence of meditation, my purpose found me. I am here to influence a mindful culture, to impact the future generations; to influence a positive self-image in children and change our culture to one of kindness. Join me, and we will change the world together. I know it will be an adventure!