August 2, 2022

“I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” – Philippians 4:13

There are a lot of things in this world that seem to be “not fair.”  We first hear this from children when they are playing, or someone gets something, or does something another child can’t. We also have these feelings as adults, but most of the time we know how to express these feelings in a mature way.

Growing up and being an adult is hard in so many ways, especially when you look back and see how easy it was being a child. Hindsight is always 20/20.  I have had to learn some hard lessons, and all of them have made me a better person. Life lessons have always been a learning tool for me, from the time I was a teenager until now.

I never wanted to go to college after high school, I had enough of school, and it was by God’s grace that I ever even graduated.  I worked a few different jobs, as a cashier and at a ladder company, but my favorite job, by far, was the movie theater. I was the cashier there and I had the responsibility of counting money and tickets. I took it very seriously and did a very good job.

I stayed at the movie theater for about five years and helped open new buildings and trained new staff.  Eventually I got married and left the comfort of that job. A few years later, I had children and had to go back into the work force.  My daughter Michelle was attending a childcare center three days a week, and I had a baby who was eight months old. I thought this would be the perfect place for me to work and be with my children.

I started 2:30 to 6 p.m. in the infant room.  A perfect part-time job! It wasn’t very long before they asked me to work 11 a. m. – 6 p.m. and do the bus runs.  Before I knew it, I was a full time teacher and I worked with every age group from infants to school age.  School age children are my very favorite age to work with!

I worked very hard, and I loved working at the childcare center. I gave 110% because it was something I enjoyed doing; it made me feel alive and I grew as a person. I had been there three years when I was promoted to Assistant Director.  This was such an achievement, from the teenager who had barely graduated high school.

I enrolled in the Vo-tech, and I was taking classes and working full time with two small children. This was hard, but I was determined to continue to learn and grow.  A few years later, I started attending OSU/OKC and I was the first person in Oklahoma to receive my certificate of Mastery. I went on to get my Associate Degree in Early Care Education, my Bachelor’s Degree in Family Studies and Gerontology from SNU, and my Master’s Degree in Leadership Management from OCU.

Being a better person has helped me in all aspects of my life, both personal and professional. My mother has been my biggest cheerleader and celebrated all my accomplishments. Being a better person has opened many doors in both my personal and professional life. What can you do to be a better person? There are so many doors you can open to help you grow exponentially.

Gabrielle Moon, Executive Director of St. Luke’s Children’s Centers