I can’t tell you how good it feels to be back to writing again! I have so many things that I want to share, but I’m trying to pace myself a little bit 😉 So I decided I should probably start with answering what everyone has been asking and wondering for the last year:
“Where the hell have you been?”
I have tried writing this particular blog post multiple times and each time I attempted, I felt like something was holding me back. And that something was a fear of sharing, a fear of being vulnerable and a fear of judgment. Transparency can be s-c-a-r-y, man. But deep down I know that only through transparency can you truly make a difference and a connection with others. And because of that, slowly, my walls are starting to come down again.
Blogging is something that I used to do almost every day. But over the last year, I’ve shied away from it, which has left so many people wondering what the deal was. For years I was consistent with being that positive influence, sharing content on my blog and on social media that would help others.
But it was as if one day I just disappeared. No explanation. No warning.
And for a while, I wasn’t sure that I would ever find myself back in a place of being open and transparent with the world.
And the reason? I felt lost. I felt drained. I felt like my spirit was broken. And I was embarrassed to admit all of it due to a fear of disappointing people.
It sounds crazy, right? But you see, the last few years have been filled with many ups and downs, especially this year, in particular, with making a military move across the country and being diagnosed with a rare-autoimmune disease that attacks the spine and causes pain and inflammation in many other areas of the body.
Now, I like to consider myself a pretty resilient person. But with everything going on all at once, my issues with anxiety that I thought I had finally put to rest started creeping in again. I was having so many medical issues, I missed my friends and family, I had lost a huge part of my income, my grandmother passed away unexpectedly during a time that I had no way of getting back home for the funeral services. My heart and my body felt absolutely broken. I missed my LIFE. The life that I had worked so hard to build that made me feel fulfilled every day. The life where I was able to overcome obstacles and see the good in any situation.
And eventually, my emotions built up so much that I started to feel like I no longer had control over this life or the direction that it was going.
So slowly over time, I started slipping into a depression. And between that, the disease symptoms, the anxiety and the negative reaction I was having to the medication I was put on, I gained 40+ pounds in a matter of 9 months.
I never in my life thought I would get back to this point. This point where I no longer felt like myself in my own body. And for a while, I was in a really dark place.
I didn’t want to go out with friends. I started drifting away from family. I wasn’t motivated in my job. I literally had zero desire to take care of myself because, at the time, I didn’t feel that I was worth it.
And not many people knew about any of this because when I did talk to people, I would always pretend that everything was fine and that I was happy. And I did this because I had come to be known as “the positive one” or “the inspirational one” and the last thing that I wanted was to disappoint or worry anyone.
Even more so, I didn’t want to spread any negative vibes to the people that I loved and cherished most.
But the thing is that when you put on a facade for long enough, it starts to get incredibly exhausting. And there comes a point when you just don’t have the energy to pretend anymore.
At this point, I finally had a breakdown. Like a complete and total breakdown that involved ugly tears and a ton of ice cream, cookies, and wine. So that is when I started to distance myself from social media. I kept to myself and only shared my struggles with close friends. And even that was something that took time for me to actually do without prodding. But no matter what anyone said to me, nothing really seemed to help.
Not even my husband could get through to me. And that scared the crap out of me.
And then one day while I was scrolling on Pinterest I came across a quote that said:
“It’s never too late to be the person that you were destined to be.”
As cliche as it was, for some reason, it caught my eye. So I stopped. And I read it. Over and over again. And finally, in that moment, I felt something. Something real.
And sometimes that’s how it happens. We’re waiting for this huge moment where the answer becomes so clear in this dramatic and theatrical way. But it’s often the tiny whispers that have the answers that we seek that allowed something as simple as a quote on Pinterest to start to shift my mindset.
Then, in this moment, I realized something important. I realized that for so long I was preaching self-care and self-love to everyone else, yet I wasn’t giving it to myself. I wasn’t focusing on my needs and was putting everyone else’s in front of mine. I wasn’t taking the time to figure out the direction that I truly wanted to go in my life and allow myself to dig deep to find out who I was.
And the reason that I was feeling so crappy was that I literally had nothing else to give. I had drained every ounce of strength that I had left. My cup was officially empty.
That’s when the shift happened. That was the moment that I decided that I needed to start taking care of my needs from a mind, body and soul perspective. I needed to be selfish for a while. And I needed to know that was totally okay. Because in taking care of myself, I’m allowing myself the opportunity to recharge and get that cup filled again so that eventually, I can take care of others and make a difference.
So little by little, I started to make changes:
- I agreed to start seeing a therapist.
- I started reading personal development books again.
- I started to incorporate exercise and good nutrition back into my routine
- I started going to church and turned to prayer.
- I started meditating with my sage and my crystals.
- I got comfortable saying no to anything that I didn’t feel aligned with.
- I started to value my time and what I had to offer.
- I started opening myself to the signs and messages from God and the Universe that I had previously been ignoring.
But most importantly, I started to love, honor and respect myself in a way that I never had. And that is the greatest feeling that anyone could ever ask for.
This whole process definitely hasn’t been easy. There has been so much trial and error. So many times where I just didn’t feel strong enough to fight for the life I knew I was capable of living. But slowly, I started to see small, subtle shifts in my mindset. And little by little, I started to feel the real me make her way back into my being. And she was coming back stronger than ever with even more insight into who she is destined to be.
Although this is an ongoing journey, I now feel as if I have so much more clarity and can now easily focus on the things that truly matter. And I’m finally getting to a place where I understand that perfection does not exist, and there is nothing more authentic and transformative than vulnerability and expressing your true emotions and feelings with the world.
Because this life— it isn’t perfect. This world is not perfect. We as human beings certainly aren’t perfect. And that my friends, that is what keeps things so interesting. What makes us all so unique. And the experiences that we have, they truly are for a reason. There is always a lesson to be learned from each one. And I for one, want to use my experiences to help others navigate through all peaks and valleys of life in hopes that my mess can be transformed into a message of love, light, and acceptance.
So moral of the story? It’s never too late to start fresh and be who you were meant to be. It’s never too late to put yourself first and to start living the life that you know in your heart that you’re meant to live. The life that you DESERVE to live. And I am honored and humbled to have you along for the journey <3