In May of 1981 I began my security career with the George Washington University Police Department. Over the next few decades my career included stints in Corporate America, contract security organizations, my own training company and as a contractor for USCIS, a component of DHS. I was also very active for more than 20 years in ASIS International, the largest professional security organization in the world, including serving two terms on the organization’s Board of Directors. One week ago on June 30, 2021 I ended my 40 year career in the security profession.
In 2014, I began giving presentations and keynotes addresses about my book Being My Mom’s Mom that I wrote to help pay for my Mom’s care after she was diagnosed with dementia in 2006. I immediately loved the people I met and the organizations I spoke for and the caregivers I was helping. To date I have given more than 350 presentations, and did all of the work myself to schedule and make travel or virtual meeting arrangements for every event. Because I loved my “regular” job too, I held down two full-time jobs for seven years. I also had the full support of my bosses at work so I felt no pressure to quit my job.
I believe everyone at some point in their lives uses the word their “calling” to refer to what they should be doing with their life. Five years ago I realized that the speaking and sharing I was doing in small and large groups was absolutely my calling. I knew at some point I’d have to slow down and give up my full-time job to focus on my passion for the primary reason that I was helping many people.
In late 2020 I FINALLY began preparing to focus on speaking full-time. I joined an organization called The Speaker Lab where I learned the business side of speaking and it’s one of the best decisions I could have made. It can be really hard to transition from one thing to another but I was READY. I knew the work I was transitioning to is the work that God has called me to do. With the time I have left in my life I pray that I can continue to make a difference for others, to give them hope and spread some joy!
When I turned in my badge and laptop last week I didn’t turn around and look back. I did briefly cry because I wasn’t planning on doing this work and retirement without Tim and I remembered that he’d attend more than 100 of my speeches before his death. I know he’s proud of me. I didn’t look back because I’m sooo looking forward to my new future! In my first week of retirement / transition I have slept in, spent lots of time with Mom, built lots of LEGO models, toured a variety of assisted living and adult day centers, and met some amazing workers in the senior living and memory care fields. The more people I meet and the more places I visit, the more I can share with my audiences who are looking for knowledge, information and hope. I look forward to transitioning to the role of inspiring others on their caregiving journey and becoming the person God intended me to be.
Thanks so much Cecilie, I’m having an awesome time so far!!!!
Thanks Cousin!!! You told me I’d enjoy retirement!
Many, many congratulations on your retirement from your security career! What a story of accomplishment you have behind you in that field! But I am so happy to know that now you can fully concentrate on the calling of your heart – the support of Alzheimer’s caregivers, families, and patients. I can truthfully say that I know of NO ONE else who has taken the “gift” of the dementia diagnosis of a beloved parent and turned it into such a profound opportunity for service and deeper love for people. It’s not news to anyone who knows you, but you are one remarkable lady, my dear Loretta. May you go from strength to strength in your career of caring. And may you feel deeply fulfilled by the solace, support, and comfort you bring to those who so need it.
God bless you in this long-awaited transition. And may you feel your beloved Tim beside you in all that you do; I’m absolutely certain he is always there.
With much love and much admiration, my sister,
Thank you my sister!! I can’t begin to explain how happy I am!! The ability to focus solely on this work now was a long time in coming but has already been worth the wait. I am so proud that I left my security position in amazing shape, having completed ALL of the goals for fiscal year 2021 almost 4 months early and prior to my last day of work. I literally gave it my all until the end of my last day.
I hope to get out in Joy to drive to some events so I can add fun and exploration to my role of inspiring others because as you know I love nature and being outside as that’s what inspires me!! I still plan to get up your way at some point and I’ll keep you posted on that!!
Your love and support means the world to me and I am so thrilled you are on this journey with me!
Loretta, you are a marvel and an inspiration on so many levels. I am excited for your next chapter.
Thank you my friend!! I’m so excited about this new chapter too!! It’s off to such an amazing start!!! It’s stunning how easily I adapted to my new life. I have loved sleeping in and feel much relaxed and calm. Guess I was more stressed than I thought! So thankful to have you on this journey with me!