In this episode, I’m gonna share something personal, but oh so important. Listen to a piece I wrote 10 years ago as my mom was in her last hours of life. I still think it’s the best way to honor her now, ten years later.
I hope it touches you, and makes you think.
Would you reach out to me on social media and let me know you if this gave you some important insight, or even a sweet smile? I’m @tamiromani on every platform.
Have a wonderful Holiday Season!
P.S. Here’s the text of
Walking Mom Home by Tami Romani 12/21/09
This is hard. This business of watching someone die. Really, really HARD. But as
with all things that are hard, it has had its joys, as well. Right now I suppose I can’t
think of any, but I am sure they are there. My dad went quickly, just over two
months ago. We barely said good‐bye. Now it’s mom’s turn, and the good‐byes
seem endless. It’s a paradox, really. You want it to be over, but you never want it to
be over, for that means your beloved mom is gone. But I promised myself I would
walk my mom Home, and, along with my brother and sister and my husband, that is
what I’m doing.
Sitting for days watching the natural progression of death, or THE PROCESS as we
have come to know and hate the phrase, causes a person to evaluate life at its most
basic level. What will my children be saying to me and about me when faced with
this same scenario?
Actually, that was the easy part. And possibly the joyous part, as well. Aside from
some silly quirks that we loved to tease her about, my mom was darn near perfect.
I’m not kidding. This woman, born on a farm in the midst of a great flu epidemic,
was tough as nails. A self‐described tomboy, she grew up in a family of 5 girls, and 3
boys. Her dad nicknamed her “Johnny.” Always joyful, smiling, and full of life, she
had great stories, and what a storyteller she was!
And yet, she was an enigma. By the time I came along she was 40 and had lived
nearly half her life. She was polished, educated, and well versed in her parenting
and pastoring skills. She always said I was a compliant child, so I guess that didn’t
hurt, but she had this way about her that just made me want to please her. Spanking
wasn’t necessary – it was THE LOOK that made me want to do the right thing, and
never disappoint this amazing Woman of God. I wouldn’t be truthful if I said I
actually accomplished that….. But that’s another story.
Yes, I was the youngest daughter of a lady preacher. It made for an interesting life,
to say the least. She was a tell‐it‐like it is, no‐nonsense person who continually
believed in her children and their greatness. Some of the most important lessons
and biblical truths I learned were from watching my mom.
There was the time a man came to the door, asking for a handout. We lived in the house next to the church, and everyone knew it. I stood back as I watched her tell the man to sit on the front step while she went to the kitchen and made a sandwich. Bringing it to him with a drink, she shared Jesus’ love in a tangible way and he was grateful. When I asked her why she didn’t give the man a couple of bucks and send him on his way, she told me the Bible says that we could be entertaining angels, unaware, and proceeded to tell me a story from her childhood during the great depression. One of her most vivid memories of God’s provision was when her family sat down to eat at a table with no food. After saying grace, there was a knock. The man at the door said he was from a new bakery in town and they were delivering bread samples to the local families. That night, the large family gave thanks for a generous businessman. Upon asking around the next day, though, they could find no one who knew of this bakery. It didn’t exist. So, the family story has always been that an angel brought the loaves of bread that night. For the rest of her life, she never wavered in her belief that God would always provide what they needed. And He always did.
Being the daughter of a lady preacher in the 60’s and 70’s gave me a sense that I was
part of the Women’s Movement long before it became the mainstream. I could do
anything. There was no boundary that would hold me back from what I wanted to
do because my mom had blasted through the ultimate glass ceiling. She was a
woman doing the work of a Man of God. And she did it well. Her sermons were
compelling, her counseling wise and her prophesies accurate. At home she was just
“mom” to us and “Mrs. J” to my brother’s buddies, but to the rest of the world she
was a force to be reckoned with.
The authority with which mom prayed and preached was not lost on me, even as a
young girl. Without saying a word, she taught me about spiritual warfare and the
dire consequences of taking it lightly. It seemed that the enemy was constantly on
the attack, and she handled each one with a firm grace that defied what must have
been going on inside of her. I knew, without her ever telling me, that if her bedroom
door was closed, she was in prayer. And not the sit on the edge of your bed God
Bless Yous, either. She was in the fervent, groaning in the spirit kind of prayer that
turns God’s ear a little bit closer.
Her favorite saying was, “But God!” When things looked hopeless and bleak, she
would say, “But God!” When she would write in her journal about the destruction in
the church brought by people with jealous spirits, she would write, “But God!” When
she was discouraged about family members she had prayed for without an answer,
she would say, “But God!” Her faith and confidence never waivered. Ever.
So I guess walking my mom Home really started when we began our walk through
life together. I have gleaned 50 years of experience and knowledge from her. Some
I have used already, most I suppose I have yet to draw from. But now, in these final
moments of her life they come crashing through my brain like a flash flood. It is
almost overwhelming, the legacy she leaves me. I only hope I can do the same for
my own children.
Copyright Tami Romani 12/21/09 *All Rights Reserved*
In today’s episode, my guest Keenya Kelly lays out the strategy for preparing to quit your job as you launch into the deep waters of entrepreneurship. Are you ready to quit your job?
Before You Quit Your Job: A Strategic Guide for Entrepreneurs was written with you in mind. Keenya says she has seen too many people quit their job too soon, and end up losing everything – including their dream of entrepreneurship.
Through her own experience, Keenya shares the most important steps to take to make sure you position yourself for success, even if your new business flounders at first. She stresses the importance of having a job to take care of your daily needs, a dream to work towards, and a hustle to help pay for that dream.
And if you are a writer, or think you might have a book inside of you – you’ll want to listen to the end where Keenya shares how she supernaturally was able to write, publish, and record the audiobook in a total of just two months time. I still am amazed at the speed of her process. She details her process, and the long list items she had to check off in order to get to the finish line.
>>> If you are an entrepreneur, or have a burning desire to find a new passion for business in these empty nest years, I’d like to invite you to join us in The Empire Builders Collective, where we clear away the fog from marketing a business online, and pursue a greater purpose and passion while making an impact. The doors to this exclusive VIP community will open just a few times a year, so make sure you are on the waitlist by signing up here: tamiromani.com/vipwaitlist
Lots of great interviews coming, so be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode!
I met my guest, Sheri McIntyre, through the magic of social media. She reached out to me several months ago via Instagram messenger, and my life has not been the same since.
Sheri was in the best shape of her life – and (she thought) the best health of her life when the unthinkable happened – a sudden rupture of a brain aneurysm left her helpless on New Years Day, 2016. Helpless, yes. Hopeless, no. Something inside Sheri rose up with strength and fortitude and she was determined to do whatever it takes to get better. She slowly learned how to walk and talk again – and now, not even four years from that day – she has written a book.
I hope you will be inspired by Sheri’s story. She reminds us all to have hope in the darkest of times, and to always look for the light, and then work hard to keep reaching for it. Above all, Sheri would like everyone who hears her story to THINK.
Here are some resources we mentioned in this interview:
Hi Empire Builders! I am really happy that my first episode after the introductions we’ve been doing is this one about being healthy enough. I’ve noticed a tendency to have an all or nothing mentality in this area. Every time we open a magazine or turn on the TV we are bombarded with images of others we would like to emulate, but really – it’s unattainable for most of us. So what do we do? We do nothing.
My guest today is going to teach you a better way. A way to be healthy enough – for you. Amy Van Liew spent 26 years as an engineer for HP, and when she took early retirement at age 50, she knew she needed to improve her health. All those years of corporate sitting had taken a toll. So, she educated herself and now is helping midlifers find the balance they need to be healthy enough. Healthy enough to enjoy life on their terms. I hope this episode sparks some ideas for changes you can make to be your healthiest self.
Here are some of the resources we referenced in this interview:
Okay. Did I save the best Empire Building pillar introduction for last? Or is it the worst?
Love it or hate it, the idea of leaving a legacy always comes down to money, for most of us. Yes, the point of this podcast is that we build empires in so many different areas, which is why we introduced the five pillars of empire building – and we will tell stories from all of them. Fitness, Fun. Family. Faith, and Finance…But that money thing? It’s the one that haunts us, am I right?
Maybe you’ve done just fine in this pillar of empire building. Or maybe you haven’t. Or maybe you are somewhere in between.
We will talk about all of it, and hear stories from the planners. The non planners, and even those who have successfully turned their finances around, even in their retirement years. Get ready for some ideas, some strategy, and some insight.
Just a few of the questions we need to tackle are –
Are you ready for retirement? Do you feel like you will never be able to retire? Did you invest wisely or live paycheck to paycheck? Did you teach your children about money or are they floundering as young adults? Are you generous, or do you feel like you need to keep every last penny because doggone it, you earned it? What will people say about your money skills when you’re gone? Do you even care? Does all this talk about manifesting and attracting money really work? And by the way, Where did our money mindset come from? Did your parents live through the great depression? Did you grow up hearing your parents say things like “money doesn’t grow on trees!” and “ What do you think I am, made of money?” And finally, is it possible to rewire your brain to have a different attitude about money and lighten up on the self-imposed pressure a bit?
Oh boy. Money. Finances. We will talk to experts and non experts and hear their stories, and their advice – then, it’s up to you whether you take it to heart or not. We will discuss business ideas, how to crack the code in online marketing… and let me reiterate here – YOU ARE NOT TOO OLD, AND IT’S NEVER TOO LATE. I might go on a tangent here, this is one of my pet peeves… every week I hear someone say things like, “I don’t do email because I’m old.” (uhhh my mom learned how to email in her 80s and was delighted to have a new way to connect with people – it was so much easier for her than hand writing notes..) I think if my mom was still with us, she would have had a blast doing live videos on Instagram and Facebook…. So, lose that limiting belief, okay???
I cannot wait to see what shows up as we unpack and learn new things together…Are you ready?
We should connect on social media – I’m @tamiromani on every platform, but my current favorite is Instagram
The Empire Builders Collective is a place where midlife visionaries find their authentic voice and unlock new purpose! It’s an amazing community where we remove the mystery from digital business and get stuff done! Join the waitlist here so you are the first to hear when doors open.
The next pillar that’s so important to leaving a legacy is your FAITH. For some, this might be a sticky topic, and maybe you are thinking, how on earth can I equate having a personal faith with empire building? But stick with me here. I personally have a great heritage of faith in my family history, which I’ll get to in a minute – but even if you have never stepped foot inside a house of worship, you are leaving a legacy of faith for your family. Sticky topic, indeed. Let’s dive in:
Here’s what I believe: I believe that even if you say you are an atheist or agnostic, you are leaving a faith heritage for others to remember. It will most likely be a “no faith” heritage, but it will stick, nonetheless. Yes, I do believe that having faith or not is a very personal matter, but I also have experience with a very personal God who meets you where you are. So, yes – I’m a God girl, a Jesus follower – but I’m not like the so-called Christians in the political news who give us a very bad name. In my faith world, all are welcome. All are accepted for who they are, and everyone is responsible for their own relationship with God. I am blessed to attend a multi-ethnic, intergenerational church here in southern California – it’s important to us to do life with those who don’t look like us, think like us, eat like us, love like us and vote like us.
That doesn’t mean I won’t talk about God, or share my stories of miracles or times when He showed up for me, and for others. I believe that sharing our stories encourages others, and helps to build that faith empire. Have you ever been to a memorial service for someone who had great faith?
No one says, “we really don’t know what she stood for.” No, they say things like, “her great faith was an inspiration to all who knew her,” or “ She loved others just like Jesus would,” or “she worked tirelessly to serve others and help them in their distress..” Great faith is a heritage, a legacy, an empire, if you will – and that’s where, for me, my mother comes in…
My mom was the backbone of our family. By the time I came along, she was 40 years old and had been through the hardest of her years in terms of building her career as a lady preacher. In the early years, I believe she shared the pulpit more with my dad, but by the time I was 7, she was the full time pastor of a church, and she didn’t retire for about another 30 years after that. When I think of my mom, the words faith, heritage, and legacy come to mind, for sure. My mom was confident in her faith. She knew God and God knew her. You will definitely hear more stories about my mom in future episodes, but for now I want to bring you up to speed about what I mean when I say I have a strong faith heritage.
A few years ago I was visiting my sister – at the time she lived in a house on the beach in Massachusetts. It was springtime, but it was bitterly cold. All we wanted to do was stay warm. Then we got a message from our cousin Jan, who is the family genealogist…. And I’m not kidding about that. She has done so much research on our family heritage, that she’s published a 637 page book (available on Amazon) that outlines the family history on my mother’s side back several generations. It’s a big, bold, beautiful, and overwhelming book. But back to my story – Jan’s message said, “oh, you’re in Massachusetts together, how wonderful! You will, of course, be going to Nantucket, right?”
Our response was, “why would we do that?” We immediately called her and heard “well, your 9th great grandfather , Tristram Coffin, was one of the first settlers on the island. In fact, his daughter, your 8th great grandmother, was known as a great preacher on the island. Her name was Mary Coffin Starbuck, I’m sure you’ll see her name all over Nantucket.”
Bam! That’s all we needed. At about 3:00 the very next morning, we left the house for a 3 hour drive to catch the ferry to Nantucket, and spent the day exploring. And you know what? Jan was right! The names Coffin and Starbuck were everywhere… and even some mention of our grandmother in a display inside the whaling museum. But let’s go back to the part about her being a great preacher, and this idea of faith heritage…
Mary Coffin Starbuck who became known as “Great Mary of Nantucket,” and was a woman of great power and influence. She was consulted upon all matters of public importance, because her judgment was superior, and she was universally acknowledged to be a great woman. She is often compared to Deborah in the Bible’s Old Testament. She regularly held church meetings in her home and was instrumental in establishing the Quaker faith in that region.
Seven generations lie between Great Mary and my mother, and while I am not really sure how many other men and women of great faith are among them, that heritage definitely stood the test of time. And I do know the similarities between Mary and my mom are many. There was a heritage there. A lineage of purpose with an intentional faith that led to impact for generations. This is something I now carry with me – and every day I am asking how can I carry on that legacy, that heritage – and continue building this empire of faith in my family line?
Maybe you can’t trace back your family history of faith like I can. Well, I couldn’t either until a few years ago. Now. I’m astonished at God’s faithfulness in calling members of my family into a place of ministry. I’ve not had that type of a calling, but the question remains – how can I carry this on? And maybe you should ask this question, too? How can you and I carry on, or establish the foundation of a faith empire in our families?
Something to think about, for sure – and we will be hearing more stories in future episodes. Stories of this legacy of faith – how to establish it, and how to nurture it.
It’ll be so good.
Well, I think that’s all I have for today. We will introduce the final pillar of empire building next time – and that is finance. A big, big topic, for sure. I can’t wait to bring you the stories as this podcast grows.
Thanks for stopping by - I'm excited to help you unlock your authentic voice so you can BE HEARD. I wear many hats and have loads and loads of interests, so this blog will be a mix of business tips, health and fitness, midlife wows and maybe some woes, grandparenting and let's throw in some shopping fun for good measure. I know your life is full like mine - so I hope you'll subscribe & interact with us all here - I'm looking forward to connecting!