It has been a challenging week.
And what do I do? I add to the challenge by agreeing to continue with the A to Z Blogging Challenge and playing catch-up! (Thankfully, one of the challenge coordinators messaged me to find out if I was still participating.) And then, let’s not forget about the challenge of making choices as to content.
To B, or not to B?
I must admit I thought about foregoing this entry, since it had been just a few hours earlier that I’d written Bridget Spence: A Pearl of a Woman. Somehow, it felt like cheating for me to do so.
What I was also given, amidst the challenges faced this week, was a reminder from three women that the impact one makes on this world comes in many forms.
B is for Bridget Spence.
Bridget was a 29-year-young woman whose light shone brightly these past eight years as she battled breast cancer from the age of 21 and wrote about her journey in her blog, My Big Girl Pants. She passed away a few days ago, and I’ve been in a funk all week trying to make sense of this world. She set an example of how to “LIVE with Stage IV cancer” and she touched many more lives that she may have ever dreamed possible.
Of course, the health challenges I face make my mind go into directions that I don’t need to go. This funk led me down a path to include fearfulness…of not being able to have the time to make a “good enough” difference before it’s my turn. So, the universe decided that I needed a gift, which I found in my email inbox this morning.
B is for Sharon Brunner.
Sharon and I have been acquainted for a few years. We have been colleagues, cohorts and comrades. We worked on several teams to offer support to local military men and women transitioning to civilian life.
Sharon wrote me a glowing recommendation on LinkedIn, rendering me pretty much speechless, as difficult as that might be for some to believe! I am accepting this “gift.” Yet, there is a part of me that finds it difficult to do so gracefully.
These were the words that Sharon shared about me:
“Excellent. Brilliant. One of the best adult educators and public speakers I have had the pleasure to work with and observe. Coral has the ability to function as a life coach; she can see clearly at a time where others become stuck trying to escape their own ‘paper bag’. Because of her insight, she is able to transcend audience paralysis. She is the epitome of an instructor/coach who helps audiences ‘get out of their own way.'”
I am humbled. Pleased. Uncomfortable.
I recently joined an online support/networking group to surround myself with people I aspire to be like. It has clearly felt as if I have found my tribe. My peeps. A place where I feel completely at ease being my genuine, sometimes quirky, self. And we listen, engage, discuss, encourage and support one another.
Today I shared this experience and Sharon’s recommendation (and my reaction) with this online group of people who have incredible “superpowers.” The responses were affirming. But there was one that resonated with me on many levels:
“Deep sea photographers use mirrors on their cameras because the fish don’t get many chances to see themselves and spend lots of time checking themselves out in the mirror while the photographers snaps the shots. We are always looking from inside of ourselves outwards so it’s hard to see what we are.
“I think that while we can see ourselves in mirrors, pictures, and even sometimes video, we don’t really get the chance to experience ourselves the way the outside world does. Soul mirrors are harder to come by; I think this testimonial is exactly that. Enjoy the view.”
B is for Brandy Morris.
Brandy’s response was to my question: “Why is it that others see us so much more clearly than we can sometimes see ourselves?” ( Brandy is a “Personal Hype Girl” and Life Coach in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Visit her blog, Illuminating Potential.)
A soul mirror. I like that.
And the reference to the deep sea photographers using mirrors seemed quite appropriate. After all, my name is Coral.
I am grateful for the people in my life who share so much more than surface platitudes. Bridget Spence, Sharon Brunner, and Brandy Morris have all done that for me this week.
And for each of these three powerful women and what I have learned from them, I am grateful.