The Unforgettable Lessons I Learned From a Mother Who’s Scrappy As Hell


scrappy mama, lessons learned from mom

What is a "Scrapper?"

Regina Hartley, UPS Director of HumanResources defines a "Scrapper" as:

"those who had to fight tremendous odds to get to where they are."

I am the byproduct of a lineage of scrappers.

My Mother was born scrappy. At a young age, her parents fled Denmark in the midst of the Nazi reign - to chase the American Dream.  They had no money - so they learned English, fought the good fight, and eventually put my Momma through college. They made it through hard times - they were scrappers.

With two young kids and a job, my Mom went to school full-time and graduated with a degree in Accounting.

After she got her degree, she became a full-time stay at home Mom, where she was phenomenal. She was the Mom who made cookies from scratch every day, when we got home from school. The mom who was our biggest cheerleader. The Mom people wish they had.

She had to scrap again. 

With a 15 year old degree and no experience, trying to find a job isn't easy. (Especially a male dominated industry) Especially when you are also a single Mother of three girls. I never saw her struggle, I never saw her cry. She pushed through it.

And she excelled. She found a job, quickly climbed the ladder. Today, she has been a CFO for several companies, and continues to push her own boundaries. Finding that first job after a divorce certainly wasn’t her first, and won’t be the last time she will get scrappy. And, that’s okay.

Because she is a scrapper, she will always find a way. And because she taught me to scrap too, I am constantly pushing my own boundaries. She taught me that there is always an alternative. That every problem has a solution. She taught me how to fight for what I believe in. She taught me to trust my gut. And most importantly, she taught me that women can do anything.

I couldn’t be more proud of my lineage of scrappers, and I couldn’t be more proud of my Mom.

The True Lesson:

No matter what quality trait I learned, or who I learned it from. I learned through the qualities of others

Not from a book, religion, or school, but through the example of others.

I guarantee my Mother has no idea how her behaviors stuck with me my entire life, and that’s okay. That wasn’t her intent. She didn’t do it for me, she did it because that’s who she is.I need to spend everyday of my life authentically displaying the characteristic traits I would be proud for my son to follow. The traits I show him, and everyone else in my life matter. And my actions are infinitely more important than my words. And they always will be.

So, to all the scrappers out there, keep fighting. And to those leading by example, keep going. We’re in this together, and I’m proud of you too.