Monday, November 4, 2013

My Bravery

My inspiration today (yesterday) is a song. Music tends to get me through just about anything; happy, sad, excited, frustrated.  I have heard this song a few times, and I realized, today, (maybe yesterday depending on when I get around to posting this) that this song is what I wish and hope of everyone.

The song didn't get me up and moving, but it got me to reflect on the last 2 months of my life, the last 6 months of my life, the past year of my life, and the past almost two years.  Since I graduated college, my life took on many significant changes, with the changes coming often and quickly.  I truly embraced change in my younger days (I know some of you will say, that I am not that old), but as time has gone on I have adapted several fears.

Yesterday, I had to deal with my fear of heights walking up some stairs.  It was very windy and I was with my two daughters.  I was shaking, but I had to be brave for my daughters.  I don't want to see them growing up with irrational fears.  I haven't always been afraid of heights, but it has gotten worse as I get older.

 Sucking it up, being brave (after all, the girls made it up the stairs before I did), and ignoring myself literally shaking in my boots I got to enjoy this view.

Here is me being really brave, and putting it out there:

In the past 10 years, I have really lost myself.  Lost touch with who I am.  I am not saying that it was 10 years ago exactly, but I changed.  It was not consciously.  I wanted to climb the corporate ladder and I was in love with a man.  At one point, I had no desire to get married and have children.  But it changed somewhere in there.  I got married.  I had children.  And, as a people pleaser, I let go of who I was to keep those around me happy.  Or so I thought it was making/keeping them happy.

In doing this I sacrificed so much of who I am.  I stopped doing the things I love and taking care of myself.   My fears evolved.  Walls went up.  I didn't recognize who I was anymore.  I believe those around me, who love me, saw the evolution as well.  No one, directly told me that I had lost myself.

I remember one of my aunts talking to me about how I didn't seem as confident as I once was.  We couldn't really put our finger on the cause.  We both chalked it up to being laid off.  But I had so much to look forward to...I had just secured a new job, and was about to get married.  I think that is the first time I felt like I had lost part of myself.  I used to be ambitious, goal oriented, happy, excitable.  Those are all the traits I want back!  What made me realize that I need to get this person back, is my peer mentor at work.  She is a former college classmate of mine.  She told me her first impression (and still holds true to her) is my passion for my industry.  She was impressed with it when we were in college, and she still sees it from when I started in June.

With the weight loss, it opened my eyes to exactly how much of myself I have lost.  It took a series of unfortunate events to make me realize, how lost I am.  I lost my zest for life.  I am sure this is the zest that the man fell in love with.

I realized there were things holding me back in life.  The unknown (which used to excite me) caused me fear.  I was scared to be healthy, to be thinner, to be truly happy again.  I am worthy of happiness (which took a lot of convincing).  But, to achieve this happiness I had to do a lot of things that held me back with fear.  What would it mean to eat healthier?  What would it do to my family if I exercised more?  What if I fail?  What if I cannot maintain? 

I made changes slowly, so I could more easily support my healthy lifestyle.  I made over my kitchen, my schedule, and who I surrounded myself with.

I hit my goal weight.  I started spending time with someone who didn't live by the same health guidelines as I had been.  But, because of who I am - I gave up on myself again to try to make my new friend happier (which I failed at miserably)...I gained some of the weight back.  And the friendship is in flux.

I have come to the realization that with out passion, you there isn't much depth to life.  I am now sitting here, wondering what is it exactly that I am passionate about...Seeing my kids grow up.  But what outside of that!?  My career with a company I love.  But there has to be more to life than that, right?  What is going to get me out of bed when the girls are grown and out of the house and it is a Saturday?  My goals, my hopes, my dreams and aspirations and becoming the April I was several years ago.

Two random things: today, my co-worker and Weight Watchers buddy called me her "Weight Watchers Godmother", because I am always there guiding her through the program.  When she told me that, I realized that now that I am "out there" with my weight loss how I am afraid to fail at this, and let the people I inspire down...(although she did say she would not judge me if she saw me holding a donut...unless it was from the cafeteria downstairs).

Brave is beyond saying what you want to say.  It goes beyond to doing what you want to do.  Most of the time, the hardest part is taking the first step.  You don't have to take a big first step.  You can dip your toe in.  Whatever you say or do, I want to see you be brave.  Do something today that scares you.  I have done a lot that scares me in the past 2 years.  In the last few months I have really put myself out there...more so than I did the previous 10 years.