Happy Wednesday! I LOVE sharing with you the powerful stories of everyday women like us - if we all knew everyone's story how different this world would be! How much more compassionate and united we would stand.
In that spirit, I share with you my story...
Q: Tell us where you grew up, a bit about your upbringing and what you were like as a child?
A: I was born and raised in Little Canada, MN. An only child I was small and weak at birth. Illness plagued my childhood and at age 3 I was unable to walk for an extended period of time.
My parents were very strict and extremely protective due to my fragile physical condition. Leaving the house/yard except for school and church was very limited, and I was rarely allowed to invite friends over to play. During this time I valued solitude and played primarily by myself in the woods behind our house, deeply immersed in the natural world.
When I was 5 we got 'Bingo' a terrier mix and my instant new best friend! Bingo brought out the best in me, taught me patience, compassion and wonder as only an animal can! Thus started my lifelong love affair with animals. Thank you Bingo!
As I entered junior and senior high my parents (Henrietta Ruth & Fritz Otto) relaxed alot and were very supportive of any and all of my interests: piano, cello, sewing, art classes, volunteering as a candy striper at the nursing home/hospital and finally - friends!!!!!
Q: What did you want to be when you grew up?
A: An elementary school teacher. That is what I went to college for and in my third year for the first time I was put in the classroom for my practicum. I HATED it. Not only did I lack classroom management skills, I just felt totally out of place. I changed my major to business the very next day and never looked back
Q: What are the highlights of your journey into adulthood – pivotal moments, important lessons, discoveries about yourself, the world and others?
A: I jumped right into adulthood getting married at 19, first child at 21, second at 22. Then I took an extended break and had my final child at age 35, 13 years later.
Being a mother is, and will always be - the highlight of my life. Each of my children have brought endless joy and growth. I am also a super proud grandmother of 13 year old Soren - who is super smart, sensitive and has a quirky, hilarious sense of humor!
In my 20s I did quite a bit of modeling in Minneapolis. My agents, scouts and clients were not shy expressing how they wanted my body to look. I took it way too seriously and it manifested in anorexia and bulimia. Recovering from these illnesses was extremely challenging and altered many of my relationships.
Building my business, Lady Katherine (women's fitness studio offering pole fitness) from scratch was pivotal as well. Through that journey I realized I could do anything - if God gave me an assignment he was darn well ready to make it successful because He wanted to leverage it for His glory. Many women were healed because of the connection established with their bodies - particularly survivors of abuse and addiction. I did not anticipate that benefit of what I was doing and it blew me away!
Regarding other people, I think we are all doing the best we can under our circumstances and that any minute we can change our perspective and see the world and ourselves entirely differently. I love everyone I meet and try not to judge since I have no idea what they are dealing with behind the scenes
Q: Do you have any morning/evening rituals that you practice regularly – and why?
A: Yes! Up at 5am, meditate for 25 minutes, journal, inspirational reading, visualization and prayer for my family and the world (all together about 75 minutes)
Q: What is your current calling and how are you aligning with it?
A: Part of my calling is this blog - so many women I know and love are transforming and transitioning at this time. Through the sharing of stories and resources I hope to ease and bring joy to the changes we are experiencing as a tribe.
An emerging call is to take action in the form of an animal sanctuary and learning center.
Just like Lady Katherine, this came out of nowhere and is an intense drive I cannot stop thinking about. Soooooo just over a week ago Mr. Fossler and I officially opened Pleasant Pasture Farm Animal Sanctuary & Education Center on our farm in New Richmond.
I am confident our endeavor will be supported and successful - because it is not something I would have chosen - it chose me - just like Lady Katherine - and we anticipate being surprised by how God will use Pleasant Pasture to his glory
Q: What do you do professionally?
A: I am Associate Director of the Small Business Development Center at UW River Falls where I have the privilege and honor of helping individuals start, grow and get financing for their businesses
Q: What else do you want us to know?
A: I am happily married to Terry Fossler and we just celebrated 16 years together. Someone told me that if you stay married long enough you end up being married to someone else because they change - it is so true and what a wonderful journey it has been!
Lady Katherine's newest project - Pleasant Pasture Farm Animal Sanctuary and Education Center: visit our website, follow us on FB and Instagram! Join us on this amazing adventure
xoxo Lady Katherine