When I was first presented with the opportunity to blog for Boys & Girls Clubs of America, I thought it would be fun; then the reality set in - What the heck do I blog about? Will anybody read it? Would anyone care? Will I find inspiration on a regular basis – and will the words come spewing out the same way John Grisham seems to crank out books? To make a long story short, this has not been the course destined for me.
After settings aside all of my blogging questions and hesitations, I realized that I would just put the thoughts down, throw caution to the wind and see what sticks. Here goes, Mr. Grisham:
So lately, I’ve been going through a mental “down time”; much like Austin Powers, I felt I’ve lost my mojo or passion for the work I do. Instead of a weekend getaway or staying home eating ice cream watching romantic comedies to cheer myself up, I decided to try and work through this maudlin period, hoping it would go away. Like the troopers we in youth service have been molded into, I sucked it up, packed my bags and headed to the airport for a week full of work, thinking positively.
As it happens, I’m getting off a plane in Orlando to support the National Keystone Conference with my colleagues when a smiling young woman in her early 30s approaches me and says, “I thought that was you!” She gives me a hug. To my surprise, she is one of my former Club kids and had also been on the plane. We caught up, and then she shared with me what an important role I had played in her life: how I had been her mentor; how I had taught her how to type; how I had helped her become president of the Keystone Club; how I had influenced her growing up as a Club member 20 years ago.
You can’t imagine how my spirits lifted. There could not have been a more distinct way for the universe to tell me I have been -- and should continue – doing the right thing. This was the unsolicited testimonial. Whether you call it karma or destiny, it was really cool.
I know that if Brenda’s successful life was influenced so greatly by her involvement in the Boys & Girls Club, the 1000-plus youth at the Keystone Conference I was headed to were in for a life-changing experience.
Thanks, Brenda, for reminding me why I love this work!
For more information on Keystone Clubs and the 2011 National Conference, click here.