When I moved to Hawaii back in 2008, I realized quickly, it would be difficult for me to get my footing again as a teacher and that I would likely be a full-time stay-at-home mom for a while. This was not a bad thing in Hawaii. Especially with this view from my home.
But, I quickly felt restless and the need to expand my professional horizons a bit.
The thing about finding a new phase in life is that it’s scary. You’re not always sure what the next step is, or how to build something that you don’t have a clear vision on just yet. Because, quite frankly, you’re learning as you go.
But, when I met my friend Laura, I realized that I was capable.
I say this because I watched as she grew a hobby into a serious and thriving business. I watched her navigate a year-long deployment with her husband in a war zone all the while managing her life in Hawaii with her three daughters and a new budding photography business.
In addition to that, she still managed to be a supportive member of the military family she had connected with in Hawaii by forming a regular social group with those wives who were enduring their own deployments. Since that time, she has moved a couple of times, launched photography workshops that taught other spouses and entrepreneurs. She regularly gives back to the military community through her military mini-sessions which are offered only to those who have deployed spouse. More recently, she has taken on the role of event coordinator in the area where she is stationed.
She is always evolving, always growing.
I admire that so much.
I have learned from her not to be afraid of setting goals that pulled me out of my comfort zone. Setting goals is often what helps us get through those really difficult times that always come as a military spouse. I learned that one day at a time, sometimes one hour is more than okay as you navigate your ‘new normal’ – and this applies to the professional pursuits as well as the deployments. Laura’s examples taught me to celebrate small victories and lift other people up while I’m building my own place and space in a new field.
I’m not quite sure how she does it all, but I know that I am thankful for her example and friendship. She has been one of my mentors, and I’m quite sure, she had no idea.
Laura’s spirit is infectious, her drive is inspiring and her thoughtfulness and ability to lift others up with her own life and professional lessons is heart warming. Her goals always include lifting others up. I can only hope I’ll set that same example.
Who have you been inspired by in the military community?
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Chevrolet via MSB New Media. The opinions and text are all mine.