The other night I woke up from a dream and couldn't fall back to sleep. My heart was beating out of my chest. I was disoriented. Where was I? What was reality. As I lay in the dark, next to my husband, I was having the calmest panic attack of my life.
You see in my dream we were getting a divorce. And I don't do Divorce. I am a latch-key kid raised by a single mom. I have seen all the divorce. I was not going to be a statistic. My kids were not going to experience the repercussions of divorce. I would fight to the death. And yet in my dream and after I awoke, the fear of the divorce. The hard of the divorce wasn't hard at all. My husband and I were civil through the process. We were sad but accepting. We were in good communication about the children. And even as our lives began to rebuild, we maintained a healthy, loving, though a-typical environment.
And as I laid in bed, having all of the fears that have haunted me about divorce laid to rest, that's when I really got scared.
Holy shit. I have been holding onto my marriage out of fear. And if I am no longer afraid, what's left. What does this all mean.
I spent days sitting with this. Wrestling with this. Does this mean I am supposed to get a divorce. Is this my sign that everything will be ok and I don't need to have these fears. That my idea that the nuclear family was best isn't so and that really any family dynamic that is filled with love is actually the better way. Communication and reassurance and collaboration trump any pre-historic notion of what makes family right and good?
You see upon the many things in my life that needs some repairs, my marriage is at the top of that list. Working together for six years served us well. We learned teamwork and communication. We had fun working on projects together and building things together. We were passionate about growing and were doing it alongside one another. On the other hand these things also taught us diplomacy and how to not fight. How to brush things under the rug. How to focus on projects (or parenting) over our marriage.
And after we were no longer working together, it was clear that there wasn't a whole lot of "us" left. Coparenting and roommates became the forefront of who we were.
And yet because we didn't fight, it didn't feel all that bad. I saw knock down drag-outs that ended in divorce. And before I got married, I declared I would never get divorced. Clearly, I thought step one to preventing that was just not yelling. So I don't. And while my mom made sure I was equipped with all the latest counseling tips of those times, (It's not your fault, we still love you, no one is going to replace your dad) I still felt the blows of what I have interpreted as a bi-product of divorce. The money stresses. The challenges of parents picking me up. Missing games. Kids pointing out your deficiencies. And my adamance to never be a statistic. To never let my kids experience this lack. To fight for my marriage.
But in a moment. In the short time that is a dream and yet the power of all of the feelings of this setting to feel so real. To take away all of my irrational fears in one night. To leave me in a state of panic wondering what the hell I do with this information.
Because for the past several months we have been attempting to repair our marriage. We have done date nights and check-ins after the kids go to bed. We have have tried sexy months and scheduling. We have listened to podcasts and read books. And I have even scheduled that initial couples therapy appointment. Knowing full well that we know all the skills and tools but somehow we are just not using them in synchronicity.
And then in a moment things can change. On Friday I got a flat tire. Mother fucker. And with zero question in my mind I knew I could call my husband. I knew he would drop everything with no questions asked. I knew he would show up and he wouldn't make me feel small or weak or useless. He wouldn't make me feel bad in any way for being careless or disrupting him or for the cost of new tires. He would show up. He would fix my tire. He would make sure that Luca and I were safe. And he would take care of it all.
And it was in that moment that I remembered why I will fight for my marriage. Because this is the kind of man he is. He's the one who will drop everything when I need it. He will always put my safety and the safety of the kids first. He will never put me down or make me feel like a silly girl. He won't feel inconvenienced by me. He is incredibly smart and just knows stuff. Stuff that I don't know. And he is always willing to work harder, to do more, to learn more, to grow. And he's strong. He cries more than any man I have ever met and to me that makes him stronger than any man I have ever met.
After spending years trying to follow the systems that were supposed to get me the outcomes. After ignoring my heart and my instincts, I have spent much of this year getting present (sometimes too present) to the callings of my heart. And while at times it feels like they are leading me on this wild goose chase, I now can see clearly how everything is connected.
How a fucking flat tire can be the best marriage counseling I have ever received.
I just wanted to say thanks for reading. In a world with so much content, that you're reading mine. I don't take this light. Thank you, sister. Did think connect with you? Speak to your heart? Maybe it will speak to someone else you love. If so, I want to thank you in advance for sharing it out.
Have you ever tried to be all the things to all the people?
Because I certainly have. Someone thinks they are more qualified to tell you what they think you should do or who they think you should be...
And then a very smart friend once called me out, "So you're just going to abandon yourself like that?"
That one comment hit me. Wow! That's exactly what I have been doing. Forever. Abandoning myself. No wonder I have this chronic feeling of loneliness and unworthiness. No wonder I find myself scattered and jumping from one thing to the next.
What would it actually look like to stick by my own side. To defend myself and love myself wholly?
The truth was, I had no idea. I didn't even know what I truly wanted. You see, I have forever been the steam roller in my own life. I am really good at fixing things and helping people and lending advice and support. I have been repeating mantras like, "action cures fear," and "ready, fire, aim." I think I have been spending a whole lotta time getting in touch with my heart... which I have.... but as soon as she gets courage enough to speak up, my head comes in like your tough guy boss. All loud and ready to take over the meeting. "SO THIS IS THE PLAN THEN. THIS IS WHAT WE ARE GOING TO DO." My heart is sitting there in the corner trying to raise her head but no can even see her anymore over my boisterous (and somewhat obnoxious) head. Apparently getting in touch with my heart was an activity to do just so the smarty pants head of mine could come up with a plan, create something, take us there. As if the heart is incapable of moving and guiding. Or maybe that's just my chronic impatience, lack of faith that we will eventually navigate our way there.
All of this also leaves me vulnerable. Victim to the opinions of others. Often making choices based on what others see in me or think I should do or be good at.
Let's take coaching as an example. I can't tell you how many people, both close to me and strangers alike tell me that I should be a coach. Makes sense. I have a therapy degree and can do some motivational interviewing like a boss. I have both the training and experience which is a rarity in an over-saturated field. I have lots of testimonials and sure, I could coach. But there is a reason that I open up the doors and close them almost immediately. I thought it was fear. Then I thought it was money. So I try and try again like maybe if I solve one of those, it'll work for me this time. When the truth in my heart is that I don't want to coach. At all. I like my freedom too much. I love connecting and impacting but coaching surely isn't the only way to do that.
I want to write. Last Summer was the first time I actually opened up my heart and let the words fall out. And you know what? The response that I got was some of the most fulfilling in my life. Why did I stop? Oh yeah... coaching. (eye roll)
I like speaking too. So yuh. Blogs, books, podcasts. And I want to make a lot of money. There. I said it. I want to make a lot of money writing and speaking the words that just fall out of my heart.
Let's go ahead an cue in the naysayers, the negative Nancy's. All the critics that say this is too hard too do. Too specialized. And I listen. I let their doubts creep into my mind. Instead of the mindset, "Why not me," I always have had the thought, "well, who do I think I am..." You know the not good enough stuff.
How have I responded? By coaching, of course. I have literally abandoned me, my voice in exchange for a voice that's more coachy with a 1-2-3 system that I believe deep down to be bullshit. Because the only thing that's real in this world is your own human experience. No one is a one size fits all. Now, I don't entirely mean that because I actually like coaches too. There is so much value that comes from our teachers and guides, but IT'S NOT ME. And that's ok! Praise Jesus.
So I have battled this story through lots of personal development, lots of conversations with different coaches (see I told you I like them), lots of manifestation work.
And you know what? I actually 100% believe that I will do it. I will make money writing.
Because in order to get paid to write... I should probably do what?? WRITE MORE.
Yet something always interferes with my consistency with writing. If it's not fear anymore then what is it???
AHHHHHH. Yes. That's right. I am still one of those normal humans that has to pay normal bills. Actually, I am one of those extra special humans that is in a mountain of debt from bad business decisions. And as much as I sit and manifest wealth and genius words, there is another elephant in the room called reality.
You see what so many of these hopeful coaches forget to leave out in telling you that you can have it all tomorrow is that you also have to pay attention to today. To what's right in front of you. Sticking my head in the sand and pretending that I don't have to deal with my debt or just sitting in wealth manifestation isn't going to work until I commit to changing my habits.
So while I learn all of these lessons, I too, have to make a living.
I have spent a lot of time dwelling in this. Like should I get a job? What would I do? Am I even qualified to get a job? Hell yeah I am. I am super smart and skilled. Ugh. What would that look like? Ok day care full time? Who will pick Lyla up? When will I see Chuck?
Reminding myself I have a sweet little gig at my fingertips and should probably just go rock that. As hard as staying home with my children is at times, I really feel that I chose this. This is my hard right now. So here I am.
For a long time, I have been swirling all of these thoughts around in my mouth, feeling desperate for a plan, for a course of action, for something that I could feel really good about. And for months, I have started to run on a path and hit a dead end.
And then I finally had a realization. That it's actually ok to have a means to an end. It's ok to use my network marketing business for what it is - like so many people use their jobs everyday. It's ok to not be passionate about shampoo but to show up and be the best me possible. It's ok to have fun. It's ok to write and not make money at it (yet). It's ok to build an incredible residual income so that I have the freedom to write freely. To get help and outsource life's tasks. And it's ok to work less right now so that I can focus on other areas of my life that just trump work right now - like raising these babies, taking care of my health, and recreating my marriage.
I'm tired of living my life for others. Trying to fit into some mysterious box of what I think others see in me. I am tired of forcing creation before it's ready (and then feeling like I am not good enough). I am tired of neglecting the things right in front of me that I don't want to sacrifice. I am so tired.
And when I finally started to live out this decision, it's like I came alive. I started waking up again with purpose, yet patience. I prefer to get up before my kids and set my intention for the day, but damnit if I don't love a serious cuddle sesh with my 2 yr old. I am flexible with my flow, but stern in my productivity. I act everyday with love and grace - first and foremost for me. Second for my family. And third with my team. I am back to working out, a daily personal development plan, and fueling my body. I am letting go of perfection. Sometimes that means Luca gets plopped in front of the TV while I have a call. Sometimes that means I'm late for a call because I am kissing an unexpected boo-boo. And sometimes that means naptime hustle looks more like naptime for mommy (happening today).
Who knew that letting go of a little control and a little of this stranglehold that I have had on my dreams would actually be the first step to not abandoning me. To loving all of me. And since doing this, we've begun to turn an industry on it's head. I have had more tears and compliments from team members from showing them a no bullshit system. For helping them get real results in their business. I have felt a greater sense of peace and ease, nicely balanced with challenge and growth. I have more confidence in the twisty curvy way that my path is going. And I have finally been able to identify what exactly it is that I do best - a memoirist. Just writing these little words from my life that spill out of my heart and into yours.
Did this speak to you in some way? Maybe consider sharing it out on social media or leaving me a comment. One thing that I know is that the messages in our heart can spread and heal the hearts of others.
I'm a messy hair lovin' - soulful book junkie - mompreneur who's totally addicted to helping women design a life they lovI'm here, simply, to share my truth so that it inspires you to live yours! To be your boldest, most authentic self, to find your tribe that supports your soul, and to go after success in every area of your life. e.