Motherhood is beautiful: Meet Jodi
Occupation: Health Services Program Manager
Mom to: Hunter and Maddox
If Jodi Nelson had a tagline it might read “head up, spirits high.” This mom of two is calm, collected and embracing positivity wherever she can find it.
Jodi’s energetic boys keep her on her toes as well as her husband who works long hours as an executive chef at a boutique hotel in Golden, Colorado. It seems she’s all too familiar with the “part-time single parent” drill.
For the last 20 years, Jodi has had a successful career as an account executive, consultant and facilitator/trainer to large healthcare and wellness clients nationwide, including her current role at WebMD Health Services. But she’s also an entrepreneur - her side hustle is helping women achieve their health and fitness goals through good nutrition and physical activity.
When she’s not working or chauffeuring kids to and from sports and activities, you’ll find her volunteering at school, either helping with a school community night or attending a PTA meeting.
Her seemingly effortless positivity and grateful spirit hasn’t always come so easily. Over the last year, Jodi endured two challenging life events. Last summer, her husband was in a serious accident and hospitalized in the ICU. He was moved to inpatient rehab for several weeks so Jodi was in high gear managing the chaos. Then in January, just when life was getting back to normal, she received the news that her mother suddenly passed away.
Despite these setbacks, Jodi says she’s more grateful than ever, more clear on her life’s purpose and more committed to seeing the abundance in life. “Be a willing participant in your own life - take action and share grace with others and yourself,” says Jodi. “We never know when it could all change, so embrace this messy and unexpected life.”
Best part about being a mama? When your kiddos surprise you with something they’ve done for (or said to) someone else, which clearly comes from a place of love, empathy and light. It proves they are listening, absorbing and becoming amazing humans. It makes me proud. Every time.
How do you feel about women and aging? I feel that women should own everything about their bodies – the beauty, the curves, the dimples, and certainly the rough edges and raw emotions. We should celebrate who we are, what we have and who we are becoming. Aging is certainly a process, but it doesn’t have to ‘happen’ to us. We have choices for how quickly, how beautifully and how gracefully that process happens.
What does the “future is female” mean to you? It means women have the ability, and dare I say even, the ‘permission’ to be their gender. Meaning, we can utilize our innate female skills to make change. We are smart negotiators, empathetic listeners, and strong collaborators. We have the ability to share the best of ourselves, and find the space to be vulnerable – if it helps a group gain clarity and a common understanding – as a means to lead into the future.
Any particular thoughts on the MeToo movement? I think it allowed women (and some men) the freedom to find common ground. The movement created an open, safe space for people to admit, then forgive and begin to move past that part of their lives.
What’s been the most surprising thing you’ve learned about parenting? That no one feels like they’re killing this parenting thing! We’re all doing the best we can with what we know and intuitively feel is right.
Your thoughts on raising resilient kids? Continue to impress upon them that kindness always wins. Certainly being kind to others. But also, being kind to oneself.
Best advice your mom ever gave you? When you’re talking to someone, “look ‘em in the eye holes!”