Do you ever look around and think, “I am so lucky to be living this life?”
With Thanksgiving approaching, gratitude is on my mind more than ever. There are a lot of scary things happening in the world right now, a lot of heaviness we all bear, and yet each day I find those moments of joy, those times when I think, “Yes. This.” I am so lucky for what I have. I am so appreciative of so many people in my life. And I am so grateful for what I get to do.
Like many of us, I have two jobs. The first is to take care of my family. I get to raise two wild, precocious, charming, maddening, funny, smart, brave, loud and amazing girls who will no doubt one day change the world.
And while they are on their journey to do that – already creating ripples I might add - they watch me do my other job which is to work at Meadow.
I am so grateful they get to see this too. I am so grateful for the work I get to do and that they can see and we can discuss the impact it has.
What we are doing at Meadow is pretty amazing. We looked at the way the student financial experience creates barriers for students – at the outset when they are applying and during their time while they are paying - and realized that the best way to support students is to support the schools. The financial experience is broken and we can fix it. And working with all those schools add up. Across all of our schools this year close 250K students will benefit from our financial engagement tools.
And so I am grateful for every school who said yes to us, perhaps especially those who did it when we didn’t have a track record to show them yet. I am grateful for every leader who imagined something better than the status quo and was determined to go for it. Because of you, students are better off.
I am also grateful for everyone on our team. We are small, but we are mighty. And they each deserve thanks and recognition.
I am grateful for Nic who once responded to a message late at night and said “in my spare time I built this since I saw you mention a school mentioned they’d like this feature.” And he was right; they wanted it and others did too.
I am grateful for Just who works tirelessly to make sure that every calculator includes every rule and every type of aid and for Melissa who a few months ago had never used a net price calculator and now can build one.
I am grateful for Mike who shows us how to show up every day and be committed to getting the work done, while also being committed to his family and making it to school pick ups.
I am grateful to Gareth for asking “why” and “how” and then “how can we” and for Pietro for spotting talent and hiring it and then for developing it so that we have an engineering team that works as well together as a team that has been together for many years more.
I am grateful for Jon who says things like, “I can’t wait to build that!” when we discuss a new feature and who once said he ran slower now that he was older but he meant his miles are no longer sub 6 minutes and who runs that fast anyway? (And also, he is not old!)
I am grateful for Maria who brings her years of experience designing financial products that are easy to navigate to Meadow because UX can be beautiful and it should not have to be so hard to pay your bill. And so she makes it simple.
I am grateful for Steve who can walk into a room and give high fives all around because he knows and is friends with everyone (or soon will be, his energy is infectious) and for Alfredo who is deeply committed to our organization, its success and his own learning and leads fearlessly.
I am grateful to every contractor, advisor, board member and investor we have because while the time we have with many of you is short, it always feels so valuable.
I am grateful for so much - today and every day.