Transgenerational Fears and Successes
On May 8th,1902, Mt. Pelée on the Caribbean island of Martinique unleashed an eruption that killed approximately 30,000 people, the highest death toll of any volcanic activity in the twentieth century. My great grandmother, Charlotte Paigerac lost her entire family. Why didn’t she stay with them in Saint-Pierre? I imagine this woman with dreams and ambitions had been guided away from the imminent disaster.
Charlotte overcame the isolation and the pain of this tragic loss by finding the resources to re-invented herself as a spouse, a mother, an inspirational grandmother, and a conscientious leader! I’d like to think that her ability to rebound and her resilience made her a powerhouse.
She was a strong woman and yet this did not prevent her from having irrational fears; imagine that her dread of a Mabouya, a small lizard-like animal from the gecko family led to her death. As brave and resilient as she was the irrational terror of a tiny lizard caused her to die. What a paradox for such a clairvoyant and strong person who was so confident in her life.
Charlotte had ambitions for all her children and made a point that the girls in her family receive a good education. She pushed my grandmother Elida to pursue a career and to always go after her dreams in an era when women’s roles were mainly having babies and being domestic servants.
From all the stories that were told to me about my great grandmother, this is my understanding of who Charlotte was and that’s what carries me and moves me forward in my moments of doubts!
Charlotte’s life ended before she overcame her gecko phobia, yet her legacy lives on in my aunts, cousins, nieces, daughter and me carrying on her dreams and values, and healing the intergenerational weaknesses and fears.
Let us overcome our fears, by giving others the keys to freedom by sharing our challenges and experiences as leaders whether they are good or bad. You are not a victim of your circumstances, there is a way to go beyond this, let’s use our experiences as a resource to others to help strengthen their resolve and let’s lead by example.
LET’S ALL WORK FOR THE GREATER GOOD. Let’s be conscious and mindful that our actions and history can inspire or destroy us. We need to realize and be aware that our behavior can be an inspiration to others.
Therefore, let’s choose to inspire, let’s choose to be conscientious leaders.
Géraldine Boudoute is a Certified Coach, Author & Consultant in Management and Organization.
Born in Martinique, a French island in the Caribbean, Géraldine has lived in Paris for 24 years. She’s passionate about Human Sciences and lives by Feng Shui, medicinal plants and whole food.
Géraldine assists women and men to become the best version of themselves and helps companies improve their workplace experience, as well as organizational behavior and performance.