The men in my family, my father and two brothers, certainly were and are enormous influences on me. I constantly find a deep connection with my father that showcases how similar we are. His guidance, support, enthusiasm, and provided opportunities have fostered a safe environment for me to spread my wings and fly while knowing that I always had a support system in place. My brothers, older by nine and five years respectively, influenced everything in my life from music choices (they could not stomach a sister who enjoyed listening solely to Olivia Newton John and Michael Jackson so I was exposed to Meatloaf, The Who, Steely Dan, Jethro Tull, The Doors, The Doobie Brothers, and Bruce Springsteen among many others) to familial relationships. They continue to be a great source of love and comfort to me and we are still a tight-knit family.
Teachers certainly have held a huge place in my life. I was blessed with some very charismatic, knowledgeable, and dynamic teachers who not only inspired me as a student, but coaxed me into the field of education simply by their wonderfulness! From grade school through high school and again at the college level I made strong relationships with my teachers and realized the best career choice for me directly out of college was teaching at the secondary level (grades 8-12) in a public school setting. Those years were completely rewarding. In addition to my teachers being influences, my students were also impacting in shaping the me I became.
Once I became a mother my job shifted back into the home. My life, although not sheltered, left me seeing fewer people on a day to day basis. My eldest son influenced me tremendously in his first four years. Together we trudged through the mother son relationship and formed a bond so tight that I trust it will never be broken. His brother and sister arrived in later years and they, too, color my world with their own unique flair.
|Me with 3 influential people in my life|
|With Buzz Cutler of Rowdy.com and my husband|
One of those "Rowdizens" is a man who calls himself Art Tidesco. I will credit him with being an enormous influence on me and my writing because he was the one to plant the seed and cultivate the idea of me writing...every day. I was a once-in-a-while poster who only wrote when I got around to it and thought I had something brilliant to say. Art impressed upon me that the only way to get better and hone my craft was to challenge myself and to write, daily. I balked at first, but reluctantly took the gauntlet and ran! I wrote daily from February 2009 up until my daughter was born last October. The posts were well-received, I garnered a larger readership, and found I not only enjoyed my daily writing, but thrived on it! It took nearly another year after my daughter's birth to realize I wanted more for my writing. This blog was born on my middle son's birthday, September 13th of this year. Thanks to Art's influences, prodding, and support, this blog came to fruition and I am forever grateful. Thank you, Art!
Finally, the single most influential person in my "later" life came into my life at age fourteen. My husband has shaped the woman I am, the way I see the world, and the life I lead. We have grown together, supported one another, faced adversity (a lot), and shared amazing successes, not the least of which are our three beautiful children! We are friends first and foremost and also share a passionate marriage. We are a team and he is, was, and will always be the ultimate influence on my life.
Who are the people, places, and events that influence you in your later years? I'm reading if you are writing...