Finding my Truth on my Journey to Forty.

I am thirty-eight years old and recently I have been thinking a lot about my BIG 4-0! Yes, it is still over a year from now, but for some reason these thoughts are knocking on the door of my mind and my heart.  Maybe thats because I have a little extra time on my hands lately to sink into dreaming and thinking. Perhaps, its the transition I have been in with our big move that is propelling my yearning to want more. More quality experiences with my family, on the daily and extraordinarily. More confidence in my whole self. More quality time with those who are most important to me; that feeling of quality over quantity is so much more relevant and true the older I get.

These feelings are lurking there in my gut and they are gaining strength. The problem is that wanting to improve oneself and ones relationships can be scary and leave you vulnerable. More vulnerable than maybe I am ready to be.

Do you believe in kismet or divine intervention of sorts? Well, I do.

Generally speaking, I believe I am in tune with technology but I have never fully gotten on board with the “podcast”. Why? I have no sweet clue. Maybe it is because I prefer to read or watch than simply listen. None the less, this week a friend sent me a podcast that spoke to her deeply and she thought I needed to hear the messages as well. Man, oh man was she right! It was like she handed me the map to the treasure of what my heart and gut are telling me to find.

The podcast was Oprah’s two-part series with Brené Brown on Super Soul Sunday. I have since listened to it a number of times. I’ve been taking notes and each time I listen, I feel a more deep seeded connection to the information. So, first things first, if you have not yet listened, find it and listen. You WILL be moved and you WILL be inspired. You WILL have an A-Ha moment, or 27 of them.

The first of those moments for me, in my initial listen, was

“Vulnerability is the cornerstone of confidence”.

Self confidence for me has always been a struggle. I struggle with body confidence from weight issues and some physical scaring from acne as a teenager. I am also a compulsive “comparer”. I consistently have measured my own worth against the successes of others, rather than my own growth. I also second guess my value and the impact I have on those around me. Writing this here, for you all to see and read is terrifying. But I am owning my story and, let’s be honest, in North American culture we are so focused on perfectionism, it is no wonder that anyone experiences this type of negative self talk. That being said, I have been practicing positive self talk, improved self confidence consistently since the birth of my 7 year old daughter. I have two beautiful, brilliant little ladies, who I want to OWN their story, exude confidence and self respect. So who is best to teach them that? Me. I am not perfect, nor am I striving to be but I will practice vulnerability as a means to achieve confidence so they have a female role model, every single damn day, showing them the path to strength of mind, body and soul. It is my wish for them, to know confidence in their success and in their moments of defeat. It is my wish for myself to know the same and to travel that journey with them.

A kin to this A-Ha moment came another in Ms. Browns Parenting Manifesto which reads  “I want you {my children} to feel joy so together we will learn to be vulnerable”. POWERFUL! Why? Because to feel and know joy, one also as to know pain and gratitude. As a mom and as a woman, I always want to protect those I love the most from pain, but to really know Joy together, we have to walk the path of vulnerability through the moments of heartache and sadness, to find gratitude in the happy times. I have those family members and friends in my life who have walked with me through the saddest and darkest moments of my life. They held my hand, wiped my tears, cried with me and literally held me during the loss of my oldest daughter Addison. That journey that they took with me brought us to a deeper connectivity and now when we feel joy together, it is guttural, primal and true. I want my children to know that truth.

The next huge A-Ha moment for me was,

“Vulnerability is the birthplace of everything we are hungry for”.

Something else I am aware of, as I look at head to what I want to feel, own and have achieved at 40, are my professional achievements. I have worked most of my career with military families. I have worked with the children of these families, the youth and the spouses and parents of deployed active duty members. In all of this experience, I felt the most fulfilled when I was helping someone achieve a goal, see success or embrace their potential. I love the feeling of helping some one see their own gifts and to help them reveal their own worth.

For a very long time I have known I am gravitate towards counselling, life coaching and advocacy. I see this when I am drawn to help people reach their goals in weight loss; in conversations with friends seeking advice and support. I feel this when I am asked to share my story of infant loss. There is this pull, magnetic almost, when I observe a position or role someone has that inspires me. Being vulnerable to take this leap at almost 40 is definitely scary. Which is exactly why I feel if I am going to live authentically, in gratitude and vulnerability, I will face my fear and be brave and take a leap towards that for which I am hungry! {a blog cliffhanger…}.

Lastly, this podcast hit me with a full on O!M!G! moment. Are you ready for this? It is HUGE!

“Imperfections are NOT inadequacies;

they are reminders that we are all in this together”.

Sound the alarm!! DING DING DING!! We are all in this together! Instead of comparing our imperfections to others successes we need to look at the larger picture. We are all great at things and in other ares we struggle. NO ONE IS PERFECT. I have been saying this to my daughter for weeks now. She has been struggling in school in terms of the adjustment to a new country, a new curriculum, and in a new language as she moved from French Immersion to English. She wants to never have a wrong answer or sound “stupid”. And we have been working on ideas like, mistakes are how we learn and no one on this planet is perfect. Here’s the kicker, I have been saying this, out loud, to my children but not really walking in that truth. I shake my head in awe of the power this idea holds. If we could all just remember that we are all in this life together; human, feeling, succeeding, failing, loving, hurting, shameful, brave, loved, alone, beautiful, broken. We all exemplify ALL of these things at any given time on any given day. And before we go internally beating ourselves up for not meeting some mythical form of perfection, we should take comfort in knowing,  I am not alone. I can make mistakes and feel love, and love myself. I can  reach extreme success and feel love, and love myself. I can find gratitude in my imperfections as they can propel me to new goals, they will help me be vulnerable, to find and feel joy, and ultimately, my imperfections are ME. I whole heartedly believe that my imperfections are my truth. They play as important of a role in my story as my successes. 

I am moved to tears, by the simplicity and complexity of these A Ha moments I am living this week. Moreover, I am feeling a fire in my belly to stride towards 40 with self assurance and whole heartedness. I am going to follow a few dreams on my journey and see where they take me! I’m excited for one hell of a ride over the next 15 months, but I am more inspired by the gifts it will give me through the rest of my time here on this beautiful planet.

So thank you Brené Brown and Oprah for being famous and having a platform to reach people. Thank you to the beautiful person who sent me this podcast, for being my friend and sharing your journey with me. And thank you to all the loves of my life, my friends and family, who will continue to walk my journey with me, without fail. I am excited to see, feel and own my vulnerability and my story!

~M~

 

 

2 Comments on “Finding my Truth on my Journey to Forty.

  1. It is so great to read your thoughts and encouragement. It’s been a long time since we saw each other in person but you are an extraordinary lady. I really do believe that your calling is counseling, guiding, supporting others in whatever form you approach it. I am also relieved to follow your blog at this time as we just moved to Japan on a posting and it’s also a lot of the moments of change and challenge and growth. I look forward to reading your next blog and following your journey in Cali.

    Liked by 1 person

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