Over the last two years, more than any other season in my life, I have come to value stories. There are the stories we share as leaders and coaches that uplift and spark others to aspire to greatness. Then there are the funny ones that we hear at dinner tables every holiday. The stories we reminisce and tease our siblings about on long car rides. And the tender stories we tell in a way that when we finish speaking, we need to take a quiet moment to hold our loved ones in our hearts.
In honor of Women’s History Month, I thought it an appropriate time to share a little bit about my mom, Shirley Jackson, and her love of storytelling. She taught and modeled for all who knew her how powerful a story can be in drawing people closer together and making connections with the past. In her 70’s she published her first book Hot Dogs with the Queen, capturing photos and stories from her childhood that she would often rehearse to my sister and me.
“Storytelling is one of the most powerful ways to influence, teach and inspire.” - Vanessa Boris
After her passing in the summer of 2020, my sister and I discovered even more about our mom while looking through her high school yearbook and other keepsakes that she left behind. Her yearbook pages and margins were full to the brim. Who knew our mom was a socialite!
The most interesting thing we discovered is that she was on the girl's basketball and the hockey teams! We could not believe it! And yet, with the energy she had even in her 80s and her desire to work with high school teens for over 35 years, the full picture of her life story became even clearer.
We were honored to have her with us as long as we did. And so thankful she showed us how to use stories to learn more about our legacy.
This month I encourage you to capture some snapshots and stories from women in your family and circle of love. Of course, I’ve created a visual template to help you quickly collect information in a way you will more easily remember it. What you do next is totally up to you.
Let's celebrate and honor the women in our lives this month! Click here to join our email list and download your own family history template today.