Had an impromptu visit today with a former colleague from my days in health. Eryn caught me on a better day, while on a whirlwind trip to Victoria for her work and am so grateful to have had the opportunity to connect. Our lives have followed similar paths - she worked at one of the same radio stations I did (years after I left) and made the leap to communications in her adopted home town of Prince George - where she did amazing and tireless work with Northern Health for over six years. She has since moved on to an exciting new position in the field of emergency management and I could tell by the passion in her voice that they are fortunate indeed to have her. Like many of us, her early life story had its share of chaos and one with many hurdles to overcome. From a distance, I've watched her come full circle and in the last few years she has given up smoking, embraced running, taken her love of singing to the stage in a stand-out performance of Les Miserables, found a partner in life with very special step-kids and most importantly - given birth to a beautiful baby boy, Thomas. She is embracing life in a way that leaves me in awe and her energy could leave me buoyed for days. Seeing the sparkle in her eyes and having observed her capacity to embrace life without fear is inspirational in a way that is neither showy nor boastful - it is simply a fact.
For many years she was a voice on the end of the telephone - one of a cadre of men and women who I dealt with in my working life - at a time when many chickens in my world were coming home to roost...and not in a good way. I was frequently stressed - full of anxiety at letting the balls drop - and there were many moments when my patience left me and yet Eryn, ever the professional, was gracious and kind when she had every reason not to be. I will never be able to erase those difficult times nor adequately apologize to the people who endured me in those moments and taught me so much - though I have had lots of time to reflect. But time and space have seen this seed of connection we had grow into something treasured and through the magic of social media I've been privileged to watch her grow both personally and professionally in a way that fills me with the deepest respect and pride. She is the living embodiment of courage and shouting yes to opportunity - a person you want to keep your eye on to see what possible new adventure she'll take on next knowing that for her - transformation is not only possible - it is her new calling and she wears it so very well. Cheers my beautiful, funny girl.