I Love you MomOn this Mother’s Day, let us all honor those women who gave us life. Thank you for making the decision to do so. It is the most incredible and powerful gift that God could have given to us – the amazing miracle allowing us to create, carry, protect and give life to another human being.  And, today let’s honor all the Mothers – the truest friend we will ever have.

I am very fortunate to have been raised by a great Mom. And I’m sure many of you feel the same way about yours. I think it is THE most important job in the world and it carries a huge responsibility with it.

When I think about my own Mom, I realize the most important thing she gave to me was always being “present” in my life — as a baby, a toddler, a teen and an adult.  She has always been a constant in my life.

I could rattle off 9 million things she did for me while I was growing up. Kissed the boo boos, put me in time-out, drove me to and attended every extracurricular event and sporting event she could still while working one, and sometimes two jobs. Yeah, she made it happen somehow.

Cooking dinner every single night. Teaching me how to drive. Helping me with school projects. Chaperoning field trips. Showing up for all my school performances. Making my prom dresses. Giving me boy advice when I was crushed over some knucklehead. Disciplining me when I pulled some stunt.

And……telling me how proud she was of me when I accomplished something and it didn’t matter what it was. I could have won the annual pumpkin growing contest and she would have made me feel like I just climbed Mt. Everest.

I knew every day that my Mom honestly cared about me. She worried about me. She sacrificed for me. She was “interested” in me. She always knew where I was. She supported me, promoted me and encouraged me. She always let me know she was proud of me and she “showed” me how much she loved me. Daily.

She was “present” in every way. All the time. And she is today. It never stops.

Even today as a grown adult, she’s does the same things from thousands of miles away. She is a timeless teacher. How does she know exactly what to say at every important moment? How?

But not everyone is as fortunate in this world because of certain circumstances. So I consider myself to be very lucky. I have always believed that “there are mothers and there are women who have children.” There’s a big difference between the two. Being a mother is so much more than giving birth. It’s everything that happens after that extraordinary day when you experience that miracle.

I am blessed to be a mother to one son and also to be a stepmother to two amazing kids.  Step parenting can be the hardest job in the world sometimes. I got some great advice many years ago. “Just know that you are and will always be the extra adult in their lives.” I embraced that role. I’m always there when they need me. They know and I know the very special relationship we have.  I am always present in all 3 of their lives. Daily.  

The greatest compliment I ever got was when my mother told me what a great mom I had become. Those were some big shoes to fill Mom….I wonder who I learned that from?

Mothers have shaped our world from the cradle by rocking, nurturing and teaching us.  Then we grow up to make life-changing and history making accomplishments. For every preacher, president, volunteer worker, employee, entrepreneur, technician, musician, community worker, doctor, and caregiver among so many others —- there is a “mother” behind them all who encouraged her child to reach his/her full potential.

Cheers to all the mothers and the stepmothers out there and thank you for the role you have in our lives. It’s a pretty important one. I hope you all realize it. Have an amazing Mother’s Day!  We are truly blessed to be one.  God is a genius.

Motherhood will always be my single greatest achievement.  Love, Gina.

“Motherhood: All love begins and ends there.” — Robert Browning


Distrust and Verify

message and red pencil

We know that the journey of life teaches you many things and many lessons. The key is to learn from them and try not to repeat them. Isn’t that what every adult always preached to you when you were younger?

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice shame on me. Remember that.

Over my many years in life and business, I have had the pleasure of being around and working with some really amazing people but I have also encountered the opposite… the disingenuous ones who seem to have an ulterior motive. Being the trusting person I am, and one who lives openly and honestly, I would begin all relationships with the assumption that the person I’m dealing with is a good person with good intentions. So naive!   Especially a few decades ago!

Today I think differently.  I’m not saying that I walk around like a pessimist or people hater, BUT I do rely on two things to assist me with my decision making. One is my second brain also known as the all powerful female intuition and 6th sense that guides us ladies!

I’m talking about that sixth sense that’s telling you something might not be right about the person or situation.  In medical terms it’s know as the Enteric Nervous System (ENS) which resides in your gut!  Evidently the ENS has more neurons than the spinal cord and covers a surface area 100x greater than that of our skin and has 30 neurotransmitters!  And studies show that the ENS actually sends input to our brains in regards to stress, sadness, memory, learning, and even decision-making.  That fascinates me! I’m no doctor but I know when I am getting that funny feeling.  So why ignore it? … your second brain that is…

You know when you get that “feeling” that something doesn’t quite feel right but you don’t know why and can’t explain it.  If you listen to it and you are wrong, you didn’t lose anything. But if you ignore it and you’re right, things could turn out badly. More often than not, your gut is right, so you should listen to it. Better to be safe than sorry.

I learned to trust it and rely on it.  I rely on the “Gina Gut Check.”  I certainly pay more attention than I used to so I can avoid inviting “crazy into the building.” That’s just a “Gina” phrase I use, but you get it.  Don’t invite crazy into the building…aka, your life.

The other thing I rely on is some advice given to me from a retired, 75 year old successful entrepreneur.  He told me to always “distrust and verify” before making decisions.

It’s true.  Everyone is selling something and has a story whether you are dating someone new, meeting your child’s new friend, hiring a new employee, entering a new business venture or voting for the next President of the United States. Don’t believe everything they tell you until you verify it to be true.

It applies to anything.  It’s just a piece of advice I wished I had been given a lot earlier in life. 

So unless you are highly intuitive, just remember these words and apply it.

Distrust and Verify.

Love, Gina.