Thankful for a Career Choice!….

Remembrance Day poppiesI wanted to take a brief moment to remember the fallen, the Veterans and those currently serving in the Armed Forces who have fought and sacrificed so that we can have freedom – freedom to vote, to speak, to worship, to live without fear,…and to choose what career path we walk on. Until today it had never struck me how our freedom to choose the career we want was won on the battle fields. It is easy to take for granted what we have – that we even have a choice in which career we pursue and that the concept of “meaningful work” even exists. So a special “Thank You” to those who have fought over the generations so that we can have these freedoms!

Canadian National War Monument - OttawaI want to encourage you to attend a Remembrance Day ceremony this year. I have the great privilege of living in Canada’s capital, where the official national Remembrance Day ceremony is held. It wasn’t until my daughters started singing in the choir that performs for the national ceremony that I was first so moved by the parade of Veterans – some of the Veterans walking frailly or being wheeled by in wheel chairs. As they pass by every year, the crowd starts heart-felt applause and shouts of “Thank you!” It’s at these ceremonies that it becomes real to me. Those battles and missions aren’t history book stories, but real experiences of real individuals taking on selfless, heroic responsibility for the sake of others. In the parade of Veterans, THESE are the ones who fought and who represent those who died for our freedoms. I’m usually fairly reserved and not very demonstrative, but I find myself uncharacteristically applauding loudly and shouting out “Thank you!” during the parade of Veterans. It’s a moving experience!

If you haven’t attended a Remembrance Day ceremony recently, I encourage you to attend one in your area, and in some meaningful way find a way of shouting out a “Thank You!” This year I was considering not attending the national ceremony because of a cold that I am recovering from; but then I was shamed thinking of the horrific conditions and situations that these men and women endured for us. So, okay, I’ll be there in spite of my minor symptoms! If you’re not able to make it out to one of the many ceremonies around the nation, you can look for me on CBC TV 10am ET; I’ll be in the crowd of several thousands at the National War Memorial…wearing a poppy…applauding loudly and shouting out “Thank you!”

Once again, “Thank you Vets and Armed Forces personnel!”

Kevin Schafer
Career & Leadership Coach

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