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How Far I've Come

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First year student at IOM in 2008 (left) and ninth year at IOM, now serving on the Board of Regents 2016 (right)

 
I don’t have a great memory, but there are a few times and places that I can remember clearly. One of them happened nine years ago this week.

I was sitting in the audience of the graduation ceremony for the U.S. Chamber Institute for Organization Management. I was a first year attendee and the fourth years were finishing their program and earning their IOM certification.

The classes had made speeches and talked about their four years in the program. As the Vice Chair of the Board of Regents read off the graduate’s names, they crossed the stage to receive their certificate and pose for a photo with the Chair.

I can very clearly remember sitting in the audience thinking: I don’t want to cross that stage. 
I was embarrassed of my appearance. I had gained so much weight and lost so much confidence.

“Institute” holds so many fond memories for me but one of them is relevant to this blog. It’s where I made the decision to lose weight. You can read about that in this blog post.

And I did end up crossing the stage after four years in the program and 50 lbs. lighter. That was a proud moment that you can read about here.

Those stories are very important and special to me. They make up so much of what I write about in this blog. But this next story goes even deeper.

When I was younger I was extremely shy. The thought of public speaking was terrifying to me. The spotlight was not where I wanted to be. But I was very drawn to those types of people (and I married one!).

As I’ve gotten older, I have push myself outside of my comfort zone and I’m always driven to achieve the next step – whatever it may be. It never comes easy to me. I have to work so hard in those situations that can come so easy to the extroverts that I love to be around.

My IOM experience has been such a journey. I remember sitting in my first class being nervous when we were doing the icebreakers.

And here I am NINE years later and I’ve been asked to serve as the IOM Vice Chair for 2017. That girl in the beginning of this story that was terrified of crossing the stage and now I’m going to be the Vice Chair on that stage – reading off the names. It just pumps me up to know that I am that person.

I am so proud.

P.S. Since starting my Facebook "Like" Page back in March 2015 (be sure to like it!) my blog has taken a hiatus. That is my New Year's Resolution - to start blogging again. I really miss it. It is really time consuming, but I can say so much more in a blog post than I can a Facebook post.

I have some other goals that I'm working on for 2016 and I can't wait to share them here once I can get them out of my head and onto paper. I'm so excited for what I can accomplish this year!!!
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