A Tribute To My Adopted Mother

by Patrick Liew on December 6, 2012

Every now and then, an angel would walk into your life and make such an impact that you would not want to just keep it in your heart. You felt like shouting it loud enough for the world to hear and rejoice with you.

Doris Wood was one such angel in my life.

In 2001, I was in Florida and wanted to know more about a particular business model. I searched the Net and one name kept popping up on different pages – Doris Wood.

As an entrepreneur with an usual thick skin, I picked up the phone and called her to seek for a ‘free’ advice. Little did I know, that call would change my life forever.

That simple phone call lasted – you won’t believe it – for more than four hours. To be honest, we had to break up the conversation every now and then but still, we went on and on…we were like two long lost friends who just found each other again.

That conversation never quite ended. We are still communicating until today.

Like any lady, Doris Wood’s age is supposed to be a secret but let’s just say she is almost half a lifetime older than me. Her wisdom shows not only with the number of years she has been alive, she had many great experiences throughout her life.

I call her ‘young lady’ not just to humour her but also out of admiration for her ‘youthful’ energy and zest for living. Even at a more senior age, she is way ahead of me in using infocomm technology and she has probably quite a few tricks to teach youngsters too.

She grew up in a poor family but in her words, she “never knew (she was) poor.” She not only took on the challenge of coping with few means, she went on to challenge many other issues in the business world, including breaking a glass ceiling as a woman executive.

She rose up the rank and file from being a distributor, training director, business development director, to running her own business. Eventually, she became a consultant and her services have impacted literally thousands of lives all over the world, including mine.

Doris is the founder and Chairman Emeritus of the Multi-Level Marketing International Association. Even though she is small built, she stands tall even  among giants in her chosen industry and she commands the respect of many of the people in it, from the most junior person to the leaders.

Her advice to me was, “Keep on keeping on. Don’t give up!

“Many people quit just when they are ready for a huge success. If they keep pressing on, nothing could stand in their way to achieving their goals'”

Earlier on, I kidded with her and even did it publicly about wanting to be one of her adopted sons. Deep in my heart, I knew this was what I wanted and it would be such a privilege and honour to be counted as one of her own.

Typical of Doris Wood, she set me quite a few ‘tests’ to qualify me for adoption. They have to be taken over a considerable period of time, one of which tests was to stay with her and sleep on what she affectionately called her “MLM Sofa.”

The last test I supposed was to ‘check me out.’ It came with long conversations through which we share about our worldview, values, and conduct in life.

Needless to say, Doris and I shared many things in common although we would fight tooth and nail about many less important issues in life.

I celebrated with great joy when I was finally adopted and the adoption ceremony  was nothing less than wonderful. It was conducted as a part of a grand occasion and held in the penthouse of a 5-star hotel in Las Vegas.

The ‘adoption papers’ were crafted and witnessed by three well known solicitors and in the presence of many friends and relatives.

I had to go on one of my knees as if I was being knighted by a Queen and was read my commitment and obligations as one of Doris’ privileged sons (and hopefully with some rights to her estate. Ha!)

Since then, visiting her has become an almost yearly retreat for me. Obviously, I have been ‘promoted’ from sleeping on a sofa to sleeping in a guest room.

Her home has been a spiritual recluse for me, a place to escape from work and reflect about my life. Sometimes, I would engage Mum in an intellectual argument that was beyond my depth ( and, against her belief, win it anyway. Right Mum?)

I have also brought my family to meet Mum. She has also visited me and stayed in my home and we have travelled to a few countries together, including China, Malaysia and Vietnam.

Over the years, my affection for Mum has grown. My relationship with her has deepened and has become one of the major highlights in my life.

She has consciously and unconsciously taught me many useful lessons in life. Our relationship has continued to educate and enrich and me. (Thank you once again, Mum).

Every time I leave her, I leave with a heavy heart – and this is not just from the amount of good food that she feeds me. I know I will miss her and wherever and whenever I am, she will always be in my heart.

Have you got a mentor in your life?

Go4It!
I hope this message will find a place in your heart.

By the way, I have also recorded other reflections.

Visit my Inspiration blog at http://liewinspiration.wordpress.com/

For my opinions on current affairs, please visit my Transformation blog at http://hsrpatrickliew.wordpress.com/

Please visit my website, www.patrickliew.net for information about my life.

Please read my reflections and continue to teach me.

Life is FUNtastic!

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