Today someone asked me if all my family was like me. They think I am terribly ambitious and adventurous and wondered where I got that from. I had to think about that a little bit. I don't agree with their opinion of me, because I think I am just stubborn and once I set my mind to something, look out. I would have to say that yep I did get this from my family.
My dad struck out in his own business when I was around 2 or so. I don't remember that, but I do remember that he didn't give up when things didn't work out exactly right and it would have been easier to go to work for someone else and let them handle the tough stuff. He taught me that you just keep going when the going gets tough.
My mom has taught me to keep learning and to try anything. Well anything legal that is. She wanted to be a teacher, but didn't follow that dream when she was young but in her lifetime she has worked in a greenhouse and started millions of plants that have fed a lot of people, she was a teacher for a while, a baker, a foster parent, and now drives kids to school. On top of that she is always learning. She taught herself to use a computer, make soap, and just about anything else she set her mind too. She taught me to care for plants and feed my family with them. She has come through some things that would break a normal person and just kept going.
My grandparents taught me that anyone can do anything they set their mind too.
My Mammy Hess had such a love of flowers and could make anything grow. I remember most her getting me to try new things and teaching me that family is important. She was the glue that held her family together and she loved all of us unconditionally.
My Pap Hess has taught me the importance of having fun no matter what. He is now 81 and a few weeks ago I got to spend some time with him and he is still having fun. Most of my memories of him involve a lot of laughter.
My Gram Junod taught me the importance of faith and forgiveness. She had an amazing amount of faith and strength. She told me once that she started a batch of bread with no yeast because she had faith that some would show up and it did by the time she needed it. She also had the ability to forgive and to understand that people are human and do make mistakes.
My Pap Junod taught me that you must leave the bad parts of your past behind and move forward. He showed me that if something bad happens, you face it, deal with it, and leave it. Don't keep dredging it back up. He also told me it was OK to be stubborn just don't be bull-headed. I didn't understand it at the time, but Pap, I get it now.
Mike's Dad also influenced me a lot. We used to talk a lot on the porch when Mike and I first got together and he would always tell me, "If it is meant to be, it will be." Makes me smile when I hear Mike say that now, I guess he told him that a lot too. He also taught me that you need to be happy with who you are instead of the surroundings in which you find yourself.
So as far as my ambition and my adventurous spirit, it is just the product of my family. I only hope I can pass it on to my kids and grandkids.