This year, I found my voice. I found my leadership. I rose to the occasion even though I didnt know 

how to do what needed to be done. I had to battle  my demons. Ask again and again: what really matters? 

I had to make hard decisions that deeply impacted  other peoples lives. I was afraid; drained. I doubted.  

At the same time, I trusted my heart.
I led with integrity, care and compassion. 

“You inspired and encouraged us,” they said.  “If you could keep going, we knew we could too.” 

This year, I learned to stand in my power–in the fullness of wholeness. I lifted others up, in.  

Then just when I thought I reached the place  I was meant to be, life called me back to becoming.  

“Are you willing to let go again?” it asked.  I knew I had learned how to stand, centered.  

Now, I was ready to fly, untethered
and say yes, once again: I choose adventure.

Notes from the interview that inspired this poem:

This woman had stepped into a new leadership role at her academic medical center just before COVID arrived. She had been part of her organization for more than twenty years, but moving into this new position was a big step in her journey. She was now responsible for a 7,000 person workforce.

“It’s been a deep evolution,” she said. “I’ve really found my voice and my leadership in this extremely challenging time. Leadership is lonely, and it hasn’t been easy, but it’s been beautiful.” She went on to share some of the challenges she had faced, and that it had been her goal for a long time to make it to this position she was finally in. “And then, out of nowhere, another opportunity came along to do something different. I know I have to say yes. I will be transitioning into that new role at the end of the year,” she said.

“Since I know I tend toward safety, I made a commitment to myself a long time ago that I would choose adventure instead of the easy path. And I know this is an opportunity for me to be in the tension of becoming,” she said. It was clear this woman had touched many lives, and would continue to do so wherever her path in life led her.

Interviewee: Anonymous, Administrator
Listener Poet: Jenny Hegland

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