Through the process of becoming a foster parent, Bridget Lilley found her third option with BELAY as a Virtual Assistant.
In the fall of 2013, Bridget and her husband decided to go through the process of becoming foster parents. At the time, she was working at a local church and her husband was working as a web developer.
Much to their surprise, within twenty four hours of their home being listed ‘’open” as a foster home they were matched with a sibling group of three children (ages 2, 4, 5). Within three weeks, the children moved into their home. And as if that wasn’t exciting enough, seven months later, their biological sister was born and joined the Lilley family with only two days notice.
LEAP OF FAITH
In the beginning, both Bridget and her husband kept their jobs but soon realized that two working parents and four children not of school age wasn’t working for them. Add to that, all of their appointments, court hearings, sick days, and most importantly the extra time they needed with them to form bonds and attachments required one of them to be home. It just wasn’t possible to keep up with their ‘normal’ pre-kids lives.
They took a leap of faith, and Bridget’s husband left his job and started his own web business, and she began her search for something that could be done virtually. Clearly, life was boring for them and they found out they were pregnant (SURPRISE!) and the desire to find her third option became a necessity. Bridget felt like she needed to be doing something more. Something that financially contributed to her family and gave her a sense of purpose outside of the home. A friend suggested BELAY.
SKILLS THAT WORK
When we asked Bridget how she used her background to enter into the VA industry and serve her clients, she said, “It’s amazing how many little projects and skills along the way have helped prepare me for the various tasks that I have done with my client. I had once worked as an intern for a country music festival coordinating volunteers which translated into coordinating my client’s Christmas Eve church service volunteers. When I was in college and was a freelance writer – those skills have helped me succeed with editing and proofreading numerous documents for my clients. I have found that so much of my background came from little experiences in my life that I didn’t even know at the time would turn out to be so valuable.”
Bridget can’t wait each day to get up and do it again for her clients. “I love knowing that I am making a difference, not just in my family’s life (monetarily) but in four other families’ lives of the clients that I support. The work I do for my clients lets them lead lives that aren’t as stressed or overwhelmed. I know that having less stress leads to better relationships with their wives and more time to pour into their children, staff, and church members. It’s so much more than clearing out inboxes or setting appointments.”
BELAY is grateful that Bridget found her third option, and we know her clients appreciate all of her hard work and dedication to them. Her clients make her feel like she is part of their organization – and has built relationships with other staff members and church members. Over the past year, she has witnessed her clients having the time to do more meaningful, intentional projects and the ability to be more present in their personal lives. Bridget has watched them become better about disconnecting on their days off, taking time to grow creatively, and unplugging from their inboxes and to-do lists so that they can pour into others and their staff.
We think THAT is the magic that allows her client to achieve their visions.
“Working virtually has allowed me the flexibility to be there for those meetings that led to adoption dates, be there when my kids get home and need help with homework, be there for my daughter’s first steps and also the chance to use my skills and passions and help serve a church client 500 miles away.”