If you are always trying to be normal, you will never know how amazing you can be. -Maya Angelou
I knew it was going to work out well when we shared a big hug before we even sat down to get acquainted. Today, I met a stranger for coffee. What can I say? I love people and I am big fan of the latte served by the fine folks at Panera. I’m not sure how many cups of coffee a girl needs to buy before they give you one free, but I feel like it should be a thing they do for customers like me who keep suggesting others meet me there! The Friday morning invite came from a fairly unlikely source since I had never previously met or spoken to Kelly Copes-Anderson. Her sweet family is new to the Guerin Catholic community, and I couldn’t resist her email request to meet me. Wow, am I pleased I said yes! She’s an impressive human being.
Kelly is the mother of two boys and the wife of a patent attorney named Arvie. I’m not even going to hold it against them that they are Michigan State Spartans, ha?! I learned quite a lot about this sunny, truly gorgeous woman during our time together. For starters, she’s a native New Yorker who is a marketing director for Eli Lilly. She works in the oncology-breast cancer area, she shared. It was apparent she feels a deep sense of satisfaction about the fact that she is able to help others through the work she does. She’s an impressive and articulate woman, and I feel certain Lilly is fortunate to have her!
Here’s the thing. Kelly sees the blessings in her life, which makes her truly a joyful woman of God. To me, it took me only minutes to spot these as her most defining qualities– her joy and strong faith! I have my youngest son, Zach, to thank for the loveliness of my morning today. You see, Kelly’s son, Bryce, and my kiddo are classmates at Guerin Catholic. Both the boys are on the freshman basketball team, and I think her reaching out was a thoughtful beginning and a super way to start plugging in at the high school for her. I admire her desire to do so, because not everyone takes the time, but as a veteran GC mom, I can tell you the effort has reaped big benefits for our family during the last decade. She’s clearly a very proud and supportive mom! Those are two incredibly blessed sons.
I enjoyed hearing about her older son, Brenton, who is an engineering student at Purdue, and who like my own young Boilermaker lives in a place where a mom does NOT have any desire to use the bathroom (if at all possible). I got a giggle hearing her talk about walking to the West Lafayette library and shared that I tend to prefer the Purdue Student Union over the Pi Kappa Phi fraternity house.
Folks, the facts is, it’s a bit unorthodox and a tad uncomfortable to reach out to a stranger, from a community you’ve just barely begun to understand. Kelly is a joy-filled bridge builder and a positive woman of grace. We can’t learn, or grow, or get clarity without engaging. As uncomplicated as that seems, these days I find it’s much more uncommon than it once was to meet someone who grasps that. Do you know what Kelly? That bravery is THE STUFF I LOVE! Here’s hoping the Lord sprinkles this budding friendship with His special sauce! It truly was a pleasure to meet you.