The Mama Chronicles: everyone deserves a Mary Poppins.

When I was a child, I wanted to be a dentist.  Not that I was fascinated with dentistry, but because, as a child you’re always asked ‘what do you want to be when you grow up?’.  I knew I needed to have an answer ready so I chose what I thought people wanted to hear.  A profession that provided success; monetarily and professionally.  I had no idea that what really mattered was something I couldn’t wrap my mind around at this young age.

As the years passed so did my answer.  It evolved from dentist to fashion designer to interior designer.  The list continued as I tried to tap into my skills and interest.  At the age of 18, when I was preparing to graduate high school, I should’ve had a plan, yet all I knew was there was nothing that sparked me to the point of commitment (other than writing, but I thought my “hobby” was just that and I was no good at it).  I skipped the notion of attending a university and walked straight into the work force.

Although I had no idea what I wanted to do for a future career (and I felt that I was wasting my life away!), I was positive that writing would set me free.  Fleeing to Paris to live as a local, probably single, childless, and content.  I couldn’t predict anything else.  All  I knew was that I had a handful of dreams and little hope to back them up.

I spent several years with thoughts of “what do I want to do?” and “there has to be more to adulthood than this!”. I worked in the healthcare field for many years.  I foolishly assumed that this career field was a good fit , simply because I was currently working it.  At the age of 28, I decided (for the first time!) to attend college and obtain a PhD in pediatrics.  I attended with this course for one year before coming to the realization that this was not for me.  Continuing in the medical field was not for me.  I was never minded for this path.  I needed something that I would be passionate about for decades to come.  Fast forward roughly two years.  I am now a first-time mom of a beautiful baby boy and naively assuming I can handle this new chapter, along with returning to school to pick-up where I left off (which had since changed to a communications degree).  Life was good.  Hectic and sleep deprived, yet good!  Around the time of our son’s first birthday, we were surprised to find out that baby #2 would be arriving soon!

Baby #2 arrived several months later and our world changed AGAIN!  Not only did we welcome a beautiful baby girl, but this lovely bundle was blessed with Down Syndrome.  Something we knew nothing about.  We were thrown into a new chapter, not bad, but completely different from baby #1.  This girl did not sleep!!  When I say she didn’t sleep, I mean, REALLY did not sleep.  For her first 15 months of life!  (I wish I was joking).  In and out of the hospital.  Test after test.  All resulting in almost every “She’s doing well.” or “She’s rather healthy given her diagnosis.” that we could pray for.  Yes, she was a handful, and still is, but she’s healthy.

The point is: Life.  It happened.  And in that I lost me.  I became the wife, the mom, the step-mom, the aunt, the sister, the everything that everyone needed.. and I got lost.  Every single dream that I had, or thought I would’ve lived by this point, was smoke.  Not only were they not a priority, they were nowhere on the radar of any future.  I did this.  I allowed this to happen.

It took years for me to realize what I had done.  Like five to six years of living this life.  In 2014, our family packed up and moved across the country.  It seemed like a necessary change at the time, even though I was filled with every reservation a person could have.  I wasn’t ready for this relocation.  I had gotten comfortable in the little bubble that we created and uprooting our family to chase my husband’s dreams began to wear on me.  The feelings began.  And when they did, let me be quite honest by saying, I was on a rampage of unhealthy, negative thoughts.  THIS was not my idea.  THIS was not what I wanted.  THIS wasn’t in the best interest of our family, just my husband.  I blamed him for every single poor decision made in our family for years.  YEARS.  Unfortunately, I’m not kidding.   Over the next four years, I was filled with disgust, resentment, bitterness, pretty much any negative, bad feeling you can muster up.  For years.

Last year, I started a company.  I needed something for myself.  Something that I created from scratch that would provide an self-made income, independence from depending on another person to finically provide for me and the kids, and freedom to work from anywhere in the world.. I mean, really, traveling the world is something I’ve always wanted, I just needed to details aligned to do so.

My company was my baby.  I did every single piece of work that needed done to begin a company all by myself.  I was proud.  I went to the meetings.  Contacted the appropriate people to guide me in the right direction.  I worked with agencies that were more scary than helpful.

I was sitting on a gold mine!  I had every tool in-place to make this company a million dollar company, employing several people to work the day-to-day, while I ran the business.

But.. I hated it.

My office is in my house.  I come downstairs for work each day and I avoided this section of house like the plague.  I own a company that I literally want to walk away from.  I have no passion for it.  None.  Don’t get me wrong, it is incredibly beneficial to have, especially being a women owned small business working with the federal government.  But I couldn’t do it an longer.  I had no path, but I knew this wasn’t it.  I had no idea what I was going to do to make money, to provide for my family, etc.  All I knew was that I was done with this company and my mind reeled with so much nonsense, I needed a drastic change.

Earlier this year, I was searching every corner to find some glimmer of hope for my future.  I signed up for every class imaginable.  I paid for training to “build a fortune overnight”.  I did it all.  After a few classes, I began to realize that this aimless searching wasn’t cutting it.  I needed direction, but from something that I could feel passionate about.

I needed a miracle.

I was stressed to the max.  I was incredibly unhappy with everyone and everything.  I was in a marriage that I didn’t want to be in.  I was on the brink of making decisions that were hasty and unwarranted.  All of these things that I had been holding onto for years.

At one point I signed up for what I thought was a business strategy course.  Turns out it was a pitch to attract people who had the desire to become a coach (lifestyle, business, whatever).  I completed the call, immediately thinking “nah, I can’t do that”.  I continued on with many other classes in an attempt to find “it”.

During all of these years of unhappiness, I was constantly stressed out.  About everything.  I didn’t sleep.  My weight was up and down.  I was feeling physically ill in ways I wasn’t familiar with.  Someone suggested meditation.  I knew nothing about it, but why not.  I tried acupuncture.  I tried essential oils.  (ALL of which I still do!!)  I found some relief, but nothing concrete.

One class in particular wouldn’t go away.  The coaching class.  It kept reappearing on my social media sites.  I was receiving emails occasionally.  One day, I thought it might be worth a second look.  I requested more information and soon after received a call from a lovely British lady.  I was a little taken aback.  She asked the usual questions: “why was I interested in their program?” (honestly, at that point, I wasn’t sure I was!)  The conversation went on for some time.

I needed to think about it.  It was an investment that I wasn’t certain about.  I meditated, prayed, talked to my family, but what I didn’t do was talk myself down.  I never thought this was something I couldn’t do.  I could easily combine my passion for writing with this new path.  A career that ticked off all of the things from my “list”, without making it an undoable fete.  Could this be it?!

I made the plunge!  I signed up for the six month course, made the financial investment and ran with it!  I was stoked.

There was something that needed to be done before I could move too far within the program.  Healing myself.  This terrified me to the core.  I was to unveil my past from all angles, all memories, all darkness, all undeniable circumstances that made me who I had become.  I read, listened, meditated, talked, and learned.  I learned that all of the damaging thoughts that I allowed to fill my life had been me, not anyone else.  I couldn’t place blame on anyone else for a life chose not to create.  That even though I had a family, didn’t mean the end of my existence.  That my life is mine to build, create, live, and enjoy!  You can’t blame someone else for YOUR neglect in your own life.  Its absurd.

I had to make peace.  With myself first.  I had to learn to fully love myself before I could truly love someone else.  I had to realize a lot.  I had to let go.  I had to make the conscious decision to take my life back from the grip of self-destruction and choose to be happy once again.

You’ve read about my journey.  Its not a secret.  I told you about how hard the past few months have been, even when I was wearing a smile, I was broken inside.

Over time, it all made sense.  All of the madness, all of the confusion, all of the feelings.  They all made sense.  I had to hit rock bottom so that I could find myself again, and rebuild a life that I was meant to live.

My rock bottom may look different than yours and that’s okay.  The point is deciding to fall and RISE again.  I refused to remain in the ashes of the life I dreaded living.  I wanted more!  I wanted to give my kids more!  I wanted to experience things that some people only dream of!  I wanted to have the freedom, live for my passion, to show my kids that you can have it all!  That being spiritually and emotionally healthy, personally successful, playing life by my own rules, no matter who approves.. THAT is what life is all about.  Happiness!

I’m a work in progress.  I have a lot of growing and learning to do, yet making huge strides each day.  My heart is full of love and gratitude.  I have two smiling kids and a husband who hasn’t killed me yet (HA!).

The point is.. sometimes when it all seems to be breaking apart and you feel utterly lost and confused.. trust that someone, somewhere has a bigger, better plan for you.  A plan so incredible that you couldn’t dream this stuff up!!  Sometimes you have to be your own Mary Poppins and believe in the magic of life as you did as a child!

Through it all, remain positive.  Your happiness is at stake and you are worth it!