When I began in this field, the only operating system was dos and the only “cloud” for backup was a 3.5 x 5 inch floppy disk. When your computer crashed, you just cried. I did anyway. And, as a lowly receptionist in 1988, I remember learning how to type on a (gasp!) typewriter… an IBM Selectric II, to be exact. God how I loved that machine. I would still love to have one, just to hear the hum of the electricity and the whir of the ball hitting the paper. I was just 19 years old… I didn’t know it yet, but I was about to be engaged for the first time, beepers were how you communicated emergent situations (used mostly by doctors), email wasn’t invented, google wasn’t born and we looked stuff up in encyclopedias and read the newspaper. Aaaahhhh… the good old days.

The fiancé didn’t work out… man, I loved him. I spent the first 2 years of our relationship loving this man from top to bottom. But, he didn’t love me back… I fought and fought for his love. When he finally gave it, I had given up. I accepted his ring (but gave it back when we broke up) and his proposal. My friends were all getting married… it was my turn. AND, he was rich… I mean, the “real” kind of rich. First class tickets to everything… when we broke up, people who didn’t know me judged me for not staying and taking half. But, I’m a good girl from Michigan and I have my Midwestern values and integrity. It was sad, but I knew that we would not work out, big wedding or not. It took gumption (she typed exasperatedly!), a lot of it. I’m not rich, but I am happy. I make my own friends and decisions… and that means a lot.

If you’re in a relationship that’s going nowhere, or you refer to your spouse as your “roommate,” or you’re staying together “for the kids,” well, maybe it’s time you look for your own gumption. We all deserve to be happy, and those kids… well, how will they know happiness if you don’t example that for them? Be the change you wish to see in the world. Change is tough; I like to think of it as going through a sifter – sifting out the unimportant things – to get to the happiness or the cream on top.

I am here if you need me.