Thursday, March 6, 2014

Positively Impacting Lives

Over a month ago, I got a call from a friend, Andrew.  Patrick, Andrew and Nate all worked together back in 2001 when they started up a medical staffing company, Medix.  Patrick was their first employee and promotion.  Andrew started talking about how well their company is doing now, how far it's come since inception, etc.  Then he started talking about the re-branding of their company.  They redid their Core Values and Core Purpose.  He explained how he's been really rethinking things the last year and what really got him and Medix to this point.  He talked a lot about Patrick and back in the day stories.  He kept coming back to what Patrick was, is what their Core Purpose was.  Positively Impacting Lives.  Patrick was their Core Values and Core Purpose.  After he was explaining everything, I was in tears.  He then said he had a question for me.  He wanted to know if they could name a new annual award in Patrick's name.  Of course I said yes.

So yesterday, Olivia and I headed down to Lombard, IL to go meet Andrew at Medix. We got a few tours of their offices, met a lot of great people and saw some old faces.  He then took us out to a wonderful lunch at Greek Islands, Patrick's favorite Greek Restaurant.  The food was amazing!  We then headed over the The Carlisle, where the event was taking place and then back to check in at the hotel down the road.  They had everything ready for us.  What a treat! 

Andrew and Olivia at lunch

Practicing before the big night

Olivia and I rested a bit and then we got into our pretty dresses for the event.  Before leaving, I had a long talk with Olivia about behaving.  It was going to be a long night, let alone a super long night for a 3 year old without a nap.  And let's be honest, it was going to be all adults there and not so much fun for her.

We walked into The Carlisle and it was so nice.  Lots of people coming up and talking to us.  I was super nervous, so I stayed back a bit.  Andrew was so good with Olivia and took her under his wing.  She just loved hanging out with Andrew.  It was then time for the meeting to start.  Andrew welcomed the team from across the country to the Annual Kick Off Meeting.  A few speeches, guests, etc.  Then it was my turn.  Andrew was up and talking about Patrick.  I was sitting in my seat, nervous as all hell.  And miss Olivia was under the table giggling, throwing her shoes, giving me several chewed up fruit snacks she didn't want, hitting her head on the table and making a scene.  I just sat there and ignored it and hoping that everyone else was, too. 

Then, I had to walk up on stage behind the podium and give my speech.    The speech that I thought was horrible.  The speech I thought I botched because my heart was pounding out of my chest.  I got up there and took a deep breath.   Olivia did her thing and then eventually followed me.  I looked for Olivia and she was up on stage with Andrew just hanging out.  I was ready.  Then I just went with it.  As soon as it began, it was over.  Whew.  I did it.  Then I looked into the crowd once more and it was a standing ovation and I saw lots of tears.  Oh boy.  I grabbed my tissue.  Then Andrew presented me with the Patrick Blessing Core Purpose award for 2014 and a gift bag.  Olivia even got the doll from Frozen and a really cool activity/sticker book.  I sat back down and I was relieved.  The ceremony finished and we went to dinner. 

With Andrew of course

But before we ate, Olivia had to get on stage one more time to perform.  The girls got her favorite Taylor Swift song on and she hit the stage.  I think I have a star on my hands...

Dinner was just wonderful.  Olivia actually ate well.  The rest of the night, she followed Andrew wherever he went.  Holding his hand or running after him.  He had lots to do as the President of the company, but he had Olivia with him all night.  Even during his speeches.  She loved every minute of it.  That was her new buddy.

The night finished out with some more awards and great speeches.  What a fun group!  I had to remove Olivia from the event a few times to run in the hallway.  I expected that after no nap and boring for a toddler.  Then the last night I took her out was the worst.  She was super loud and so I covered her mouth, grabbed her sideways and left the room.  We returned 10 minutes later and she sat in my lap.  Not even a minute later she was out for the night.  One tired girl.

We spent the night and headed out this morning after breakfast.  I was lucky Shauna was able to watch her for the afternoon while I went back to work for my management meeting.  We ended up staying for dinner and guess who fell asleep on the way home and is still sleeping?  Olivia.