In the 15 yrs. since becoming widowed, I’ve accomplished and failed at many things, hit many goals, fumbled through situations, embarrassed myself and attempted many crazy (and many would say) ridiculous dreams. The whole process of this life is one of powerful growth.
Sometimes slow, other times fast. Sometimes understood, other times confusing. Sometimes peaceful, other times chaotic.
I fail, I succeed, I keep going. I process, I access, I decide and I act on those choices.
My life is one of service. To myself, my daughters, our life together and for what God leads me to become.
In my 20’s life was easy, 30’s glorious and painful, 40’s explorative, 50’s wiser. Experience + Knowledge = Wisdom. I have a huge respect for those older than me. Surviving teens and menopause deserves it.
I’ve lived in isolation feeling like I’ve had no help, maybe it was a bubble I created somewhat, but not completely. I’ve been through a house fire, homeless, devastated and struggled to keep food on my table. A mother’s nightmare and a woman’s soul loss.
I survived a horrific car accident that took my late husbands life. I was the first responder. I know PTSD, yet today have zero panic remembering back. I paid a good therapist to reprocess those emotions in my psyche with EMDR, 5 months of agony to release the demons of trauma.
I’ve looked fear in the face many times. We finally called a truce.
I’ve learned to be joyful and congratulatory when life makes sense for others, when I receive grace or when it’s obvious that life is just easier for others. I embrace being better vs. bitter.
I emphasize and focus on one key word each year. One year I chose patience…I’ll never do that again. Worst year ever. This year, I picked fun. Way better! I desired and needed both.
I’ve sacrificed a personal life for PTA Meetings, kids activities, home-car-appliance-computer maintenance, tutoring, keeping a financially – legally- organized- safe home base for us. Don’t regret a day when I see my kids thriving.
I’ve fallen in love, been dumped, ended relationships for the right reason although painful, online – offline and still believe in love.
I’ve built trust in relationships by giving from my heart knowing it would crush me if I lost it. I’ve recognized when I’m bruised and learned to practice extreme self care.
I’ve developed friendships by being a good friend. Communicating at the best of my ability.
I’ve asked deep, dark questions, shared a raw side of myself on national TV to millions that I’ll never be able to erase from history if I wanted to. It’s ok, it was me…back then.
I’ve been very hard on myself at every step along the way from birthing MWC to shifting my focus in my design business to dating to being a very conscious only parent.
To raise my daughter’s solo for the last 14 years, and now watch as my firstborn graduates from high school, is not what I imagined for my life as a mother. I honestly thought I’d be remarried by now, but God had other plans. The men who have come into my life have been blessings and for that, I’m grateful.
I’ve discerned when to say yes and when to say no and reserve the right to change my mind – but only after understanding why. Clarity is a #truthbomb
I’ve experienced the highest of highs and lowest of lows. They all had a purpose.
I will remain a shining light. Shrinking doesn’t do me or the world any good. Dying in the dirt of life is not what I am destined for… or for you.
The cycle of life, birth, death is the ongoing reality of the fragility of our growth cycle. Some phases we enjoy and find comfort, others pain us beyond words, but each is necessary for traction to move forward and evolve into our greater self that will then become the blessing and purpose that is you.
I know I’m not alone in facing expansion or risk or vulnerability or growth. One of my mentors once said to me, ‘You don’t have a tough life Carolyn, you have a life that requires tough decisions’. Acting upon those decisions has made me who I am today. And I like her.
I choose to grow where I am planted- even when I don’t know where that is leading me. Every warrior before me has faced these moments.
I have faith and trust that opening up to the beauty of living moor alive is worth the risk to gain the reward. The reward is living a life worthy of our legacy that was planted inside of us at birth by our creator who is ready to see us burst wide open and blossom. Even now, especially now.
One thing I know for sure: God is for us, beside us and ahead of us. I see this clearly every day.