I am a #lostchild! I am insanely creative with a insatiable drive to "Do It My Way"! At times I am so passionate with my creative ideas that I win a lot people over to join with me in my adventures to soon end in chaos or disappointment.
I have been putting the puzzle pieces together of my strange life and know now what could have helped me to avoid such chaos and disappointment. A mentor! The problem is I didn't know I needed a mentor or that that was a way to learn and grow and get better as a person.
I am a lost child because I didn't grow up with a mother, my father and stepmother were not very interested in my development - just keeping me safe, fed and some love which I am grateful for. But without parental guidance to clue me in on some simple ways to excel in life - I have had way too many trial and errors that could have been prevented with adult guidance. I am also a lost child because I am madly determined to do it my way, to do it differently-creatively for recognition, which is also a result of being a lost child.
Looking back on my life, if somebody at some point could have said to me - you need a mentor - my life would be 180 degrees different! There were many possibilities for mentors - but it never occurred to me to ask them to pay that role.
My sixth grade teacher Mrs. Baker who I connected with in our Social Studies section and she with me could have been a mentor. She really liked me, an important criteria for being a mentor. Believe me most teachers didn't like me. I was a pain in the butt! If a teacher was overly concerned about rules and couldn't be a human being and treat us kids as people - I was very tough on them. Ouch. I am truly sorry for this now and would love the opportunity to tell each and every one of them I am sorry.
There were a few other teachers who I felt like liked me in High School, but again I didn't ask them to help me and they didn't offer either. It had to be very obvious to them that I was a Lost Girl! Lost Girls with loads of talent, passion, drive and creativity should be mentored - guided when it is noticed. All lost children need this mentoring and guidance.
In college there were a few professors who I think liked me but again a miss on the mentoring opportunity.
The one that I think really got away that would have been a fabulous mentor, Margalee Wright, Mayor of Wichita who I became friends with while attending Unity Church in Wichita. She was an amazing woman who really liked me! I am so sad now that I didn't know to ask for her mentorship - what a loss!
I have made so many preventable mistakes that would probably not have happened if I had a mentor. My latest one is starting the organization Emerald City KC without going through all the "Best Practices" when starting a Not For Profit - lots of chaos happens. I was leading this project, but it has been more like Anarchy. I should have put together a Board of Directors first and worked out a plan together of fundraising, networking, how to introduce the project, how to bring on volunteers and treat them well.
We started with a Barnraising on March 28, 2011 with 156 people in attendance after doing some great Social Media Marketing. This all happened before a Directing Team or Board of Directors was in place and we continued to meet and try to figure out how we were going to accomplish our goals with anybody and everybody who showed up to the weekly meetings - CHAOS! I have certainly learned what to do better in the future. But an opportunity has been lost. If only this lost child had a Mentor.
If you are a lost child (you come in many forms) find yourself a mentor and ask them to mentor you. If you know of a lost child guide them to find a mentor. It can make a huge difference.
I am starting my research on this topic so I can write a book on it and give talks. Let me know if you are a lost child or know of a lost child so I can interview and learn more.