I want to introduce you to someone I have found to be very special. More often than not, people choose role models in their life that are distant (meaning we may never get a chance to meet them and sit down with them and learn how they developed their own path in life). But how can we ignore the great people that exist in our life currently? Here is a real life role model. Someone I have grown to admire.
Linda is a volunteer with an animal shelter in Oregon. She dedicates her time to helping dogs who are in between homes, who have yet to find a place they can stay. Most people when they go to the dog pound want to get the heck out. Linda, however, has found a passionate calling to help these future pets. There are hundreds of volunteers at the shelter that come in and out when they can. But there is something uniquely different about Linda. It’s a mix of kindness, patience, and determination. She says she used to be afraid of dogs when she was a little kid. During the interview Linda said, “ I saw a couple of dogs fighting outside of my house when I was four years old, and I just… I just still have that image in my head that it was really scary.” But as time passed she eventually came to love dogs as she progressed through different animals in her life. Isn’t it remarkable how something that originally used to be her fear, she conquered and made her joy? Now she finds herself at the animal shelter; she started volunteering there in 2010.
I am lucky that she took the time to talk to me, we were even short staffed for volunteering during the cold day. We let some dogs out and introduced a few pups to some potential family adoptees, before we hit the big screen.
I am fortunate that I got to talk to one of my role models. One of the most precious comments she mentioned, is despite Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg (U.S. Supreme Court), her role models in her life include other volunteers and workers in the shelter including Peggy Moore and Barbara Talbert. She says she admires them for how much work they put in and what they do for the animals. Happiness, hard work, loyalty, dedication, trust, caring, and consistent are the words that come to my mind after getting to know Linda. Her humble nature is her vibrance, her focus and kindness is her strength.
Life lessons and purity exist around us, we have to appreciate those who work within our lives. Sometimes we get caught up in life and are closed off to its beauty.
If you had to stop and examine your life right now and choose who you look up to, who would it be? I challenge you to look at the role models in your life and have a conversation with them. Let them know why you look up to them and try to find out what makes them unique or drives them. For me it is a no brainer, Linda has something extra to offer the world, if we just take a moment to listen. I would like you to meet her.