Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Checking in with my mother

Today is the birth date of Margaret Cecilia Hayes Sowers, my mother.  I have been thinking of her intermittently all day as I prepare to teach tomorrow's operational risk course. 

Growing up, I'm not sure you ever appreciate your mother.  From my perspective, I didn't think that I caused a lot of trouble.  I mostly liked to read.  I think it was my attitude that frustrated her.  I thought most anything was possible and do-able.  "Crack ahead!" she would say in the direst of voices.  I knew that meant "you will reap what you sow" and that she felt I was being reckless.  Like most children, I thought I had well-thought out plans, whether it was checking out ten library books a week or earning enough money myself to go to the University of Iowa.  She too was a reader, with a vivid imagination and a love of travel, so I suspect most of her dread came from imagining what terrible consequences might obtain from my ambitions.

Today I know that "Crack ahead!" is not the same as "Take risks with confidence," our corporate mantra at ASA Risk Consultants.

But I wonder sometimes if I would still have ended up in the same profession if she had not said that to me so often.

Happy birthday, Mother.

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