Wednesday, December 19, 2012

#Reverb12 Day 17: Making a Difference

For the month of December, I'm working on doing the daily series of Reverb prompts to help me reflect on the prior year and hope/plan for the upcoming year. If you're interested, join in; I found this to be a very useful exercise when I did it two years ago.

#reverb12 Day 17: How did you make a difference?

Think of one person whose life you made a difference to in 2012.

What did you gain from this?

How will you continue to make a difference in 2013?

The answer that springs to mind for this one is the man I wrote about yesterday, Harold Bergbower.  But I'll try to branch out. 

I think many people can rely on their jobs to help answer this question (my husband makes a huge difference when he's at work, for example), and I'm sure I've made a difference there, settling a case with merit, or fighting a case that lacked merit.  But I don't want to blog about work.  When I worked on the Enron case defense I used to joke that I was "doing God's work," because realistically, as a litigator for corporate clients, it's hard to feel like you really make much of a difference.  I suppose cases matter to individual plaintiffs sometimes, but for example, I spent years working on Enron and that was securities litigation defense -- not exactly life-changing for anyone. 

Maybe my local bestie's younger sister?  Because of my excitement about the Berlin Marathon in September 2013, I asked a bunch of my friends to consider registering as well, figuring the race would be fun if there were a bunch of us running it, and thinking Oktoberfest after the race would be even more fun with a group. 

As a result, my local bestie signed up and is planning to run -- and so is her little sister, who will be making her first trip to Europe (my local bestie's first trip to Europe was in 2009 for my wedding).  That's kind of cool. 

I love encouraging people to broaden their horizons and realize there's a much bigger world out there.  I'll continue to do this in 2013 probably by inviting friends to join me and my husband on the trip we're planning for 2014 as well! 

Kind of a lame post, but aside from making a difference I presume in my immediate circle of family, friends and people I encounter through work or running, I'm not sure I make a big difference.  No worries, don't feel sorry for me.  My dream is to make it all up by joining the Peace Corps after I retire. 


  1. I had an incredible Peace Corps experience and I would do it again in a heartbeat, but I often wonder just how much impact I had on the community. I return every couple of years so I see that most live exactly the same way as before. I was an English teacher. It is refreshing to see the students who are now teachers themselves or who have gone on to work for businesses where they are required to use their English. It's been 10 years since I returned to the U.S. and I still grin from ear to ear when I return and I am greeted as Teacher Aimee by a former student.

    I will tell you that I valued the "older" volunteers and the experience and wisdom they brought to the organization.

    1. If even just a few of your former students are teaching or using English for their job, you undoubtedly made a huge difference! My best friend from high school was in Romania as a PCV and did not finish her time. I think she stayed in just over 14 mos, but she didn't enjoy it. I'll of course do a lot more research before we apply, but the idea of doing something to help the less fortunate for more than a year is high on my lifetime list.