In the three years that I have been running Company of Women, only two speakers have ever received a standing ovation from the group, and one was Lesley Andrew who talked to us on June 13.
Lesley shared her story of growing up believing she was stupid because of learning disabilities. But instead of locking herself into victim mode, she took responsibility and found other ways to learn and strategies to help her cope with her learning difficulties.
She spoke eloquently and had many words of wisdom to share with us, but it was when she started to show the amazing and intricate quilts that she'd made, that you realized she was not only wise beyond her years, but extremely creative and talented too.
The icing on the cake was when she ended her talk... she sang for us. As a soprano she has sung all over the world and made three CDS. After her rendition of It's A Wonderful World, there was hardly a dry eye in the room.
So what did we learn?
1. take responsibility, finds ways to move ahead;
2. everyone has a talent or skill no matter what.
3. people who take an interest in you can make all the difference such as two teachers Lesley had who fostered her creativity
4. the power of having someone believe in you, like her mother
Hearing Lesley was a wonderful way to wrap up the season, and she gave us plenty to think about.