In today's episode, I shared the story of my apple tree.
Earlier today, Dan told me he mowed my apple tree by mistake.
He told me while we were outside doing some cleaning up from his yard work.
He nervously said, "don't be mad at me..." Before he could finish the sentence, I looked across the yard and noticed that the little apple tree I had planted was gone.
A rush of sadness hit me so hard and fast. I could not believe the wave of emotions.
The little apple tree I planted in the spring had overcome the odds. Being a city with a history of killing plants in the past was the first obstacle. The second obstacle was not being planted right away and beginning to dry out. Before its untimely demise, my little tree was thriving and showed such great promise.
For days, I watered the little stick in the hope that it would come back... and come back it did.
During our intro, Dan and I discuss the parallels between the tree and our life. I used this incident as a teaching moment on emotions, tiny habits, consistency, and resiliency.
Like my little "Appy" (the name I had given my tree), Oleg Lougheed has overcome many odds and challenges in his life.
He relinquished his parents' rights at nine years old and entered the Russian orphanage. At 12 years old, he decided to be adopted into a new family, in a new country, halfway across the world, to start a new life. At 24 years old, he began his journey of helping others live the life they have always dreamed of, despite their hardships and misfortunes, by allowing them to recognize the uniqueness and worth within their own story.
Uncertainty guided him during a time of tragedy and pain. Rejection affirmed his thoughts and feelings about the change that needed to take place. Fear gave Oleg the confidence to create the much-needed adoptee/foster care space.
He likes to say: "Alone you have a story, together, we have a voice - Oleg Lougheed
Here is some wisdom and takeaways for me after speaking to him.
Oleg’s community creates space for others to be heard
Everything is possible once you set your mind to it with convictions
Instead of asking yourself ‘why me?” ask yourself ‘why not me?’
Accept there is nothing in life you cannot do. There are resources everywhere.
Focus only on your task at hand
A life well lived is a life well shared!
Oleg is the Executive Director of Overcoming Odds in Austin, Texas. Through storytelling and shared experiences, Overcoming Odds restores a sense of community and belonging, provides a safe place to develop one’s individual voice, and connects individuals through unique life circumstances.
Oleg is the host of the Overcoming Odds podcast
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