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When you are paid a compliment, no matter what it is or from whom you receive it, it makes you feel great.  You get a lovely warm glow inside that makes you go ‘ahhhhhhh’.  Even if you are one of those who find it difficult to accept, you still feel a million dollars and as if all the world is paying attention to just you.  Well I’ve been paid the most amazing compliment by a whole bunch of people who really matter to me.  The ladies of the Hysterectomy Association, who are the stalwarts of our forum and the Hysterectomy Association Facebook page have said publicly that they like me and it not only gives me that glow, it also makes me cry – quite a lot actually! In fact I haven’t stopped crying off and on since I first heard.

So, back to the beginning.  Way back in 1997 I started an organisation called The Hysterectomy Association – it happened quite by accident, it wasn’t planned and has grown despite me, not because of me.  And this year, in 2011 one of it’s members, a wonderful woman called Amanda Anders nominated me as a Women of Achievement and I was lucky enough to be selected and am now attending the Women of the Year lunch in October.

That in itself is truly amazing and I was so shocked when I received the news that I cried.  What has compounded it all though is that so many people have been so supportive since, coming forward and telling me I’ve made a difference in their lives somehow, and these aren’t emails that are private between us, these are public messages of support and encouragement.  Each time it happens I cry – so you can see why I’ve been crying a lot recently.

I knew that I was lucky enough to have created something that had enabled women to feel less alone, but I hadn’t realised just what it was I’d created until now.  I still feel as I’m just the facilitator, that it’s all these wonderful women who are thanking me that deserve the praise because they are the ones that do all the work.  They are the people that support the newcomers and help to lessen the impact that the thought of hysterectomy can have.  I do very little and yet I am blessed.

So this post is to say THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart to each and everyone of the amazing, fabulous and truly wonderful women who have made such a difference in MY life over the years and who give so generously of their time and their experience to help others.

Linda Parkinson-Hardman

Social Entrepreneur and Founder of the Hysterectomy Association; Social Media Strategist at Internet Mentor; Speaker; Writer and Author of Eight Books; Blogger at http://womanontheedgeofreality.com and all round diva. Phew what a lot for a Thursday afternoon :-)

You can find out more about me (and perhaps connect) at http://www.linkedin.com/in/lindaph

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