Letting Go of the One that Got Away.

When I was twenty years young, I met a man I thought was meant for me.

When our eyes met across the room, a thousand lifetimes flashed before me as I gazed into the depths of his dark, glittering pools. There was a flicker of instant recognition in my soul. I was drawn to him like a magnet being pulled by a force beyond my control. As we talked about chemistry, and biology; we placed our hands together. Electricity sparked between our fingers, resonating with the fluttering that started in my heart. When our lips met for the first time, a million shooting stars lit up the sky. He awoke a fire in me that’s never been extinguished. He was contagiously fun, and ridiculous. Just like me. I knew we had to see each other again.

This was when Facebook had just been introduced. It only existed in the college campus realm, but I found him. We connected and started to get to know each other through sporadic, lengthy messages. He wrote eloquently and I was intrigued by his intellect. Months later, he finally came to visit me. The minute I set eyes on him again, my heart was ignited; my soul ablaze. He told me the stars were lining up, and I could feel it too. He spoke my language, and we seemed to view the world the same way. When we were together, I believed in destiny and magic again. If he would have told me I could fly, I would’ve sprouted wings and owed the sky. I was completely enamored. I wanted nothing more than to spend as much time with him as I possibly could. Foolishly, I presumed fate would give me that. When he left, I thought it was the beginning of something that I had been dreaming of since I heard my first fairy tale.

Sadly, that wasn’t the case. He apparently was not as in tune as I had presumed. However, my idealistic heart refused to give up on my infatuation. I tried to pretend I didn’t care, but I’d get intoxicated and lose all control. I’d call him repeatedly and leave countless unanswered voicemails. He would humor me at times, and we stayed in contact as friends. We were brought together a few more times, like galaxies colliding as we crossed paths through space. Every time we separated, it hurt a little more than the last.

I kept waiting for him to choose me, but he never did.

We would engage in long emails and talk about how incredible it would be if we were together. He would always leave me hanging with the words, “Maybe in another life.” This only kept hope alive that we could still be together in this one. There were not many days that the thought of him didn’t cross my mind. I held space for him in my heart for far too long.

Over the years, we continued to reach for each other in the darkness, and help each other find the light. He told me he loved me once, and I finally spoke the feelings aloud that had resided in me from the start. I don’t know if he ever truly grasped how unconditional my love was for him, or how many times I let him break my heart.

One day, he completely cut me off. He said he couldn’t talk to me anymore. He needed space to figure things out. This time, I didn’t chase after him or beg him to stay in my life. I finally loved myself enough to let him go. I am grateful that he walked away because I don’t know if I ever would have.

Looking back, I can see why it never worked with anyone else during that time period of my life. In the back of my mind, I always thought that we would end up together. Once I had felt what I felt with him; even if only for a moment, I didn’t think anything else could compare. I had no idea how incorrect that notion was. People show you how they really feel about you with their actions. Words are meaningless without something to back them up. Did I truly love him or was I in love with the idea of him? I think it can be harder to let go of what might have been. If you never fully have the opportunity to explore something, you hold on to the possibility. It’s just a fantasy, and the reality probably wouldn’t measure up.

Literally three months after we officially parted ways, I met the man that became my husband. A man who saw me for who I truly was, and chose me from day one. A warrior who fights with me and for me, and continues to choose me. Every single day. In him, I’ve found the type of love that dreams are made of. A love that awakens the mind; brings peace to the soul, and runs deeper than I ever could have imagined. He is my true match, my best friend, and my soulmate. What if I had never been open to finding him because I was still holding onto someone else? When someone is removed from your life, there’s a reason for it. The universe knows exactly what it’s doing.

A Glimpse into a Writer’s Wandering Mind

Aliens, Trolls, and Centaurs escape onto the pages of a book, but what really goes on inside the mind of a writer? On the outside we appear spacey; distracted, forgetful, and unfocused. We are; just in a different way than it may seem. A writer is always writing, even when there isn’t a pen in their hand. We easily slip into a million different worlds on the edge of our consciousness. Think of all the stars in our solar system, and imagine each one represents a different idea. One is a thrilling murder mystery. The next is a tumultuous love story. After that there is a lusty romance novel. Maybe some super weird science fiction sh*t adjacent to that. There might even be some mermaids and Unicorns in the corner. The possibilities are endless. We aren’t checked out. We are checked into the chaos living in our heads. We feel things very deeply, and our experience with the world is complex.

I have a hearing impairment; which allows me to tune out the real world without much effort. I sink deep into my thoughts without even realizing it. I could see a weeping willow, and suddenly I’m laying beneath my favorite tree in my grandparents backyard. There is a cool breeze blowing across the lake; which gently rustles the leaves above me. The seemingly endless limbs sway gracefully, whispering the secrets of a thousand lifetimes. The drooping branches represent balance, and harmony. The trunk symbolizes strength, and stability. In its presence I feel connected to the earth; the universe, and my soul. It’s magical, and I wouldn’t be surprised if I caught sight of a fairy dancing among the fronds.

Where was I again? It took a split second to go down that rabbit hole. It typically takes a little longer to get me to snap out of my reverie. Please pull me back to earth gently when my head is in the clouds. I think of J.K. Rowling, and I wonder how often she slipped into the land of Harry Potter throughout her days. Perhaps she spent even more time visiting Hogwarts in her mind than she did writing about it?

As a lover of words; I sometimes find phrases that move me repeating themselves in my head like lyrics from a song. A line from a novel or a movie that touched my heart Twenty years ago will randomly pop into my head. A million beautiful phrases swirl around my cerebrum at any given moment, just waiting to be brought to life.

I can often be seen frantically typing on my phone; trying to quickly jot down a thought before it disappears into the abyss. Occasionally, the conversations I have in my mind might accidentally get spoken aloud. I can assure you, I’m not as crazy as I look. The line is thin though, and I definitely walk it.

The scariest writer is the one that isn’t writing. We are an intensely passionate group of people. If all of that emotional force isn’t being unleashed, we are literally bursting at the seams. I believe all artists share similar characteristics. Singers, Painters, photographers, and designers are all working on something the world needs. At times it may feel like we don’t have a choice. There is important work that must be done.

I didn’t write anything for years. Years. I can’t believe I didn’t explode. I’m not even sure why I stopped. Now that I’ve started again, the floodgates have opened and everything is pouring out. Creativity is a product of the soul, and you can only ignore the call for so long. Eventually the universe will line up all the stars just for you.

I know that I’m finally doing what I was meant to do, and I’ll never stop.

15 Things I need my Daughters to know.

Everything in this life is a lesson. I wish I could spare you any heartbreak or pain; but unfortunately you need that too. We are here to learn. Every step along the way prepares us for the next. You need the bad days to truly appreciate the good ones. However, I do want you to be able to look at whatever negative situation you are in, and ask yourself, what is this trying to teach me?

You can be both soft and Strong. I want you to be strong; physically, mentally, and emotionally. I also know that you have a heart like mine. You are already caring and sensitive. I want you to stay sweet and loving, but I don’t want you to let anyone take advantage of you. Not everyone has the same heart as you. You will save yourself a lot of pain if you understand this. This is one I hope you don’t have to learn the hard way.

Although you are beautiful, do not let that define you. You are already absolutely stunning. I honestly can’t believe I created such perfection. Do not let that go to your head. It’s much more important to be intelligent; to have a great sense of humor, and to be kind. People will always underestimate you, but that can be fun.

Always speak your truth. If something makes you uncomfortable, don’t be afraid to say so. If you’re angry; depressed, or embarrassed, talk about it. If someone hurts your feelings, tell them. The world needs less secrets, and more open and honest communication

Trust should always be earned; never given freely. Most of the people you will come across are not worthy of it. There are a lot of bad people in this world. I’m not going to sugar coat this. You need to know. Keep your guard up; Monsters often wear the mask of an Angel.

True friendship is rare. Support and encourage the wonderful souls you connect with. Lift each other up. The world is full of fake people. Find at least one person that stands by your side through everything, even your darkest days. A real friend will be honest with you, even if it’s a little mean sometimes. They will continue to stand up for you when you’re not around. Your very best friend in this life will be your sister; don’t ever forget that. Life may bring you down different paths, but you will always need each other. Never forget where you came from. Be there for each other; for everything.

Judge a book by its cover. This is the exact opposite of what my mom taught me. I love my mom, but I’m going to have to disagree with her on this one. She taught me to always look for the good in people, but sometimes it’s just not there. Don’t make excuses for bad behavior. People know exactly what they are doing. Pay attention to red flags. Trust your gut. If something doesn’t feel right, it isn’t. If someone hurts you, don’t give them the opportunity to do it again.

Not everyone is going to like you, and that’s ok. Some people are going to speak badly about you, no matter what you do. Let them. Those people are not your people. The only opinion that matters is your own. Do you like you? The answer should always be yes. If you radiate that self-love outwards, the right people will gravitate towards your shining light.

Don’t be jealous of others. Everyone’s path is different. Keep working hard at chasing your own dreams, and crushing your goals. Whatever is meant for you, will be yours. Comparing your journey to someone else’s will only steal your joy. Instead, be happy for other people’s successes. Celebrate them and let that inspire you.

Never let anyone make you feel like you’re not good enough. You are magnificent, and I never want you to doubt yourself. If someone doesn’t see how incredible you are, don’t let that negativity get inside your head. Their battle is with themselves, not you. Stay humble, and realize that you’re not better than anyone else either. Don’t you dare ever try to make someone else feel small. Just keep trying to be a better version of yourself, every day.

Life is unpredictable. Things aren’t always going to go your way. I need you to know that it’s okay to start all over, just don’t ever give up. You can always come home if you need to. I’ll be there to give you all the love and support you need, and your Dad will help you make a plan. He’ll make sure you stick to it too, he’s really good at that.

Choose Passion over Security, Security is a lie anyway. This can apply to many things. Nothing is certain in life. Work positions are eliminated, marriages fail. Don’t stay somewhere just because you’re comfortable. If what you’re doing doesn’t make you feel alive, then it’s time for a change. Too many people are stuck repeating the same year 25 times and calling it a life. They are doing it wrong.

The person you’re with should make you feel safe, free, and magical. Anything else is a waste of time. The ultimate relationship contains a combination of both friendship and fire. They aren’t meant to “complete” you, because you are already whole. However, they should complement you; by providing balance, and calling you on your bullshit. They should help push you out of your comfort zone, and provide you with the support and encouragement to go after your dreams. Their love should only help you become more you. If you find a love like that, don’t ever let it go.

Gracefully let go of the things not meant for you. This one took me awhile to learn. I used to beat myself up over the slightest rejection. Always wondering why? I took everything personally, and I always felt like I wasn’t good enough. That’s not the case. If you don’t get the job you applied for; it maybe just wasn’t the right fit. If the person you’re interested in is ignoring you, just walk away. No matter how you feel, don’t chase after love. That’s not how it works. See your own worth, even if other’s don’t. Most of the time you’re just being redirected to something better. Be patient.

Our thoughts our more powerful than you can imagine. Positive things happen to positive people. You are whatever you think you are. Love yourself and believe that you are capable of extraordinary things, because you are. You absolutely have the power to create the life of your dreams.

We Accept the Love We Think We Deserve

I never thought that I’d end up in an abusive relationship. Not me. No way. I was strong, outspoken, and independent. I would never allow myself to be treated that way.

It’s so much easier to say these things from an outside perspective. Everything is more complicated when you’re in the middle of it. It wasn’t until years later, that I was even able to admit that it was abuse. There were good moments, and happy memories intertwined with all the bad times. Exhilarating highs, and devastating lows. As humans, we have a hard time letting go of the people we become attached to; even when it’s in our own best interest.

It started out the way any other relationship does. We met and there was an attraction; a connection, a spark. At first, I thought he was shy; quiet, romantic and sweet. He was older; more mature, and gave the appearance of a hard-working family man. I was not deterred by the fact that he had children. If anything, that only added to the appeal. I had no idea that all those first impressions were just a façade. I was young and naïve, and my pure heart always focused on the good in people.

Everything moved pretty quickly. Too quickly. Looking back, I wasn’t in a good place when we met. I was already on a very self-destructive path.

Perhaps he had been drawn to the damage in my eyes; like a moth to a flame.

I was lonely, and desperate to fill the void in my heart. I ignored all the red flags, and made excuses for everything. Maybe, he was just a little broken too? Maybe, I could help him; change him, fix him? Surely my love would be enough to do that.

I gave pieces of myself away, a little at a time.

In the beginning; I was motivated by love, but in the end there was only fear. I played right into all the mind games, and allowed him to be in control.

I told myself that the extremely jealous behavior, and possessiveness were signs of love. I convinced myself that if I could just prove to him that he could trust me, it would get better. Every time I gave an inch; he needed a mile. I allowed him free reign of my life. Unlimited access to my phone, email and social media accounts. I kept my clock out slips to prove what time I got off work. As someone who already had a tendency to self-blame, I accepted that everything was my fault. It’s hard to explain, but his manipulation had a seductive quality. He would speak softly, and hold me while he told me the things that I needed to change about myself. He was just trying to help me be a better person, he would say. I could be so amazing; if only I did this, or didn’t do that. So, I tried to be who he wanted me to be.

It was never enough.

He would constantly lie to me, and do things to ignite jealousy in me, on purpose. It was a sick and twisted game; and I didn’t want to play anymore. I was emotionally exhausted, and finally ready to move on.

Then, I found out I was pregnant. I didn’t know what to do. I was scared. I was afraid of being a single mom. I didn’t have a clue what to do with a baby. He convinced me that it would be okay, that we could do it together. I stayed for all the wrong reasons.

This is the point where things started to escalate, but I felt trapped. He attacked my relationships with family and friends; convinced me that they didn’t really care about me. He was the only one that did. I allowed myself to disconnect from all the people who really loved me. I was isolated. He made me think that I was crazy. He convinced me that I needed to be on medication; which only numbed me to the horrible situation I was truly in. If I was depressed or anxious, it was because of him. He told me I was worthless in so many ways, and I believed him.

I felt like I was nothing.

People often only think of the physical aspect of abuse, but it’s the complete mental and emotional break down of a person that leaves the biggest scars. The endless name calling. The consistent attacks on my personality and appearance. The destruction of everything I thought I was. It did get physical at times, but at that point I was already a shadow of the person I used to be.

If he knew he went too far, he’d show up with flowers and gifts. He’d put on a big show with real tears, and beg me not to leave him. He was sorry; he would get help, he would be better. If he was really desperate, he would involve his other children. They would all surprise me at work, and plead with me not to break up our family. He knew just what to say. He would pull at my heartstrings, and I’d take him back. Things would be good again for a while. I’d think I was happy.

Until the next explosion.

I was holding onto who we were in the beginning, and constantly trying to get back to that. It never occurred to me that I loved him for who I wanted him to be, and not who he truly was. The person I thought I loved didn’t exist. Every morning, I’d wake up and wonder what he was going to get mad at me for that day. I was constantly walking around on egg shells; carrying the weight of the world on my shoulders. It got to the point where he was driving me to and from work, and would show up randomly to demand to see my phone.

I couldn’t breathe.

I think I finally realized that none of this was love. How could someone hate everything about me, but claim to love me? Ultimately, it was my daughter that gave me the strength to leave. I couldn’t handle the thought of her growing up thinking that the way he treated me was okay. I needed to break the cycle; for her.

As if sent from the heavens; I was offered a lifeline. An old flame had heard about my situation from a friend. He reached out, and slowly became my confidant. He told me all the things that I needed to hear. That I was beautiful, smart, funny, and kind. That I was perfect, just the way I was. That I deserved better, and that he wanted to be that for me. He offered me safety, and helped me escape. His love was almost enough to mend my broken spirit. Unfortunately; after what I had been through, it was all too much, too soon. I didn’t have it in me to give him the love he deserved. I ended up breaking his heart. Hurt people; hurt people. It still tears me up inside; the way I treated that wonderful man. I will forever be thankful, and I hope he knows I’m sorry.

I’ll never know if I would have eventually mustered up the strength to leave on my own, but that isn’t the point. I finally left for good, and never looked back. I’ve let this experience make me better; stronger, and wiser. Pressure will either turn you into dust, or into a diamond. The choice is yours.

The Journey to Self-Love

The Journey to Self-Love

How do we learn to love ourselves again? I say again, because we don’t start life with negative feelings about ourselves. In the beginning we are happy and filled with love for everyone, and everything; especially ourselves. The feelings of acrimony are learned over time. A lot of unpleasant things happen throughout our lives that create insecurity and self-doubt. Sometimes terrible things happen to us in our childhood that have the potential to completely derail our lives. Children are very resilient, and capable of moving forward despite trauma. It isn’t until we are older that we truly grasp the effect that childhood events have on us. Even though we had no control over the situation; we still feel shame, guilt, and embarrassment. In young adulthood, we are not prepared to deal with the damage. We engage in self-destructive behaviors in an attempt to numb ourselves from the overwhelming emotions, that we are not equipped to handle. We blast the music, experiment with drugs, and drown ourselves in alcohol because it’s “fun” right? Sometimes. Sometimes it’s just an escape from reality. It’s a temporary solution to a problem that isn’t going to go away on its own. We ultimately just make everything worse. People with unhealed wounds attract unhealthy relationships. We lose ourselves somewhere along the way. If you’re strong, you’ll claw your way back up out of the hole you’ve put yourself in, and fight for your life. Unfortunately, we often have to hit rock bottom before we are willing to do the difficult work of facing our issues, and begin the healing process.

So, How do you heal? First, you let yourself feel everything you’ve been avoiding for the majority of your life. Let all of those emotions wash over you. Feel all of the anger; the pain, and the sadness. It’s scary, but a necessary step to heal all the damage. Give yourself time. Allow it to knock you down if you must, but don’t pack up and live there. You have to get back up. Remind yourself that you’re a fucking survivor; not a victim. Forgive the people that tried to shatter you. Not for them, but for you. Forgive yourself for everything you put yourself through. Own your part in the decisions that you made while you were broken. All of it wasn’t your fault, but some of it was. Admit that you made some bad choices. Forgive yourself for being toxic to other people. Maybe even reach out and apologize to some that you may have hurt along the way. Hopefully, they’ll forgive you too. Then, you let it all go. You move on. Release all the shit that’s been weighing you down, and let yourself become the person you were always meant to be. Learn from it all, and grow. Put your energy into something that brings you happiness. Change your mindset. Remember that everything that happens in life is a lesson. Bad things happen in order to teach us something; to strengthen us, and prepare us for the next level of this life. As you heal and grow, try to find a way to help others. Transform your suffering into something good. Realize that the healing process never really ends, and it’s okay to be a work in progress. Things will trigger you; you may take a few steps back. Just don’t ever give up. Trust the process, and fall in love with the journey.

A Love like this…

I’ve always believed that love is the key to life. It’s what makes the world go ‘round, and it’s all we really need. My heart was always too big, and filled with so much love for other people, and not enough for myself. A lot of heartache and tragedy could have been avoided if I’d simply loved myself a little more. It sounds easy, but it’s an exremely difficult thing for most people. It took me 28 years to actually fall in love with myself. Before that, I was completely destroyed, and had to rebuild myself from the ground up. It wasn’t until I did, that I found someone else who could love me just as much. I found a strong man that could handle my chaos, my neediness, and all the fire inside me. Someone I could share my naked soul with; who didn’t run from the scars of my traumatic past. For the longest time I waited; thinking that Prince Charming was going to come rescue me. But life isn’t a fairy tale, and I was not a damsel in distress. I rescued myself and it wasn’t until then, that I was ready to meet a man who treated me like the queen I always was. A warrior who stood beside me, and supported me while I continued to heal and grow of my own accord. True intimacy is having someone who knows every little thing about us, and accepts us exactly as we are. Someone who loves us in spite of all our imperfections, and allows us to be unapologeticly ourselves. When we have a safe space where we can be completely open and honest about who we are, and what we want, the most amazing things happen.

Falling in love with him was unbelievably easy. It felt like finally coming home after a long, and difficult journey. The Buddhists say that when we meet our ‘soul mate’ we will feel calm, no anxiety, no agitation. The night we met was pure magic. We bonded over Tom Petty songs and more laughter than I’ve ever known. His presence calmed my soul, and I realized I could finally stop holding my breath. I’ve never had to fight another battle alone.

We are far from perfect, but the perfect marriage doesn’t exist. He’s Type A and a little OCD, and I’m a free spirit who just likes to have fun. He’s very logical, and I lead with my heart. Sometimes we balance each other very well, and other times things blow up. However, we always communicate, compromise, and resolve our issues right away. I’m not afraid to speak my truth. We may not always agree, but we always respect each other’s thoughts and feelings and find our way through to the other side. We often get so caught up in our hectic, day-to-day lives, that we forget how incredible it is that we found each other in this world. We lose sight of how amazing it is that after all these years, we still like hanging out with each other, every damn day. There honestly isn’t anyone else on the planet that I could spend this much time with!

Dreams

We all had big dreams as children. So full of life with stars in our eyes and chaos in our hearts; ready to change the world. Some of us have chased after those dreams and achieved amazing things; while some of us have put those dreams on the back burner for over half of our lives. Why? Why do we give up our dreams? What’s holding us back? I’ve analyzed this quite a bit, and the only conclusion I’ve come to is Fear. Fear of Failure. Fear of rejection. Fear that we aren’t actually good at the things we love to do. There has always been a little voice in the back of my mind whispering that I wasn’t good enough. I finally started to tell that voice to sit down and shut up. I’ve Learned to tune it out, because it’s wrong. I am enough, more than enough. So are you.

I’ve heard that whatever you did as a child that made the hours pass like seconds, is the work you should be doing for the rest of your life. Some of my favorite childhood memories are all the adventures I had in my mind; my imagination was endless. As I got a little older, I started to write. I loved it. I Lived for it. I had the confidence that I was going to be successful and I wasn’t afraid to tell the world. Somewhere along the way, something happened to that self-assurance and that dream got set aside. But my dream never died. It has always been there, collecting dust in the corner of my heart, waiting for the right time. The truth is, the “right” time doesn’t exist. There is only now, and the fire in my soul can no longer be contained. I’m setting out on this journey knowing that I may fail, many times. I’m prepared to face rejection over and over; knowing that it’s all going to be worth it in the end. If I don’t take a swing, I’ll regret it for the rest of my life. Bravery is not the absence of fear, but continuing in spite of it.

There’s something wondrous that occurs when I’m writing. After awhile, it’s almost as if conscious thought has stopped. The pen in my hand has a life of it’s own, as it dances across the page. It feels like the entire universe is flowing through my fingertips. I’ve come alive, and my soul is connected to the divine. The stars are aligned, and time ceases to exist. It’s in that moment that I know. This is it. My purpose. This is the reason I’m here. I’m addicted to that magical feeling. If you have anything in your life that makes you feel that way, you need to do more of it. If there is a dream in your heart that invades your mind every day, then you need to go after it with every fiber of your being. Forget fear and focus on your FIRE. Let’s light up the world together. 💫