Lately, I have been struggling with a few financial obstacles. All the result of calculated choices I knew would make things a bit difficult over the last couple of years. But keeping the main thing the main thing…the end in mind… the focus on the goal… and any other hype terms of the like have been my mantra. And for the most part, the mental effort has served me well, until the last few weeks. I began to feel the drain of one particular situation. To the point that I felt stagnant and failing. Like I was making no progress and couldn’t readily see a way out of the muck.
Fast forward a few days to this past weekend and my brother’s kitchen. What you need to know about me is that my brother is one of the bars I set for myself. My selfless love and pride for him remind me I am human. I am connected. I can love without boundaries and fiercely protect from somewhere so much closer than geography. He is also my motivator. Being someone he is proud of, someone he believes in, someone he sees as successful is an energizing force in my life. These desires push me more than just about any other external source. Of course, our muse of inspiration and drive must be rooted deeper and is far more internal and intense than even the closest of family relationships. However, I believe we can have very healthy goals built on our desire to be seen by someone who DESERVES that desire.
Jimmy, no matter our differences in personality, lifestyle, and income bracket, has always believed in family above all else. We survived adolescent teenage big-sister-little-brother-syndrome. He survived the wake I left for him as I rolled ridiculous dice in my life that cost my family and me dearly. We have grown closer as we’ve gotten older and the more settled I‘ve become. We have bridged the gap of having children of a broad span of ages and the distance lifestyle and geography create. We came together in an indescribable way when we lost Mom and continue to grow closer each day. He has always loved and needed me... whether he liked it or not. If I do say so myself. LOL.
He has earned a spot as a bar I set for myself, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Now, back to the kitchen. I found myself discussing the afore mentioned money issues, and I can say for the first time ever, I didn’t feel the unbearable weight of shame or embarrassment. Well, maybe a little embarrassment. I am the elder, after all, I should be the one setting the bar, right? ( I really hate the word ‘should,' but that’s for another time). I felt vulnerable, raw, and maybe a bit nervous. But I also noticed that I felt loved, accepted, heard, and seen (and here’s the catch)… by me. It was almost startling when it occurred to me that the comfort I felt as I spoke with this person whose success and humility I admire more than anyone's was not because of him. While I loved that I wasn’t afraid to talk about how our lives differ, the deep calm didn’t flow from him.
It was my belief in me, who I am, and the faith that anchors that belief.
Just a few days ago, I was beginning to feel swamped by circumstance and could not find my balance. Just 24 hours with a different view, in a safe space, enveloped by things that truly matter, and the perspective I was grasping for revealed itself right where I Ieft it. In me. I have had it all along. The still small voice and intuition that tells me I am heading in the right direction, even if it gets dark. The ever-burning light we each have. The one that is so easy to explain away or hide. We try to snuff it out with words like “responsibility.” Phrases like “by now I should have/be…” “I am not worthy of…” “I haven’t earned…” (Need I continue?). The light I have spent years digging out and moving closer and closer to the surface. Fueling and protecting it as it brightens. How easy is it to just close our eyes? Or worse yet, to look past the light and into some perceived world, rooted in outside expectation, and simply ignore the light altogether.
Today, as I am looking out over my brother’s beautiful backyard, sitting in his space. (The “Jimmy Wing,” if you will.) Surrounded by his books. In the room he rests and energizes his mind, and strengthens his body. I am not only reminded of my unique light. I am blinded by it. I want so much to be worthy of his pride for more than sharing DNA…and deep down, I know that I am. However, more - much more - importantly, I want to know that I have done all that I can to take the light I have been given and shed a bit of it into the lives of others. Easing their burden. Expediting their healing. Cheering their internal badass into the open.
Loving their journey and the scars that strengthen them
until they are able to do it for themselves.
Yesterday‘s kitchen revelation served as yet another reminder of how often we have the answer. We simply do not accept that truth and sit with it long enough for the peace or solution we seek to make its way to the surface. Heading into the next few weeks of preparation for our inaugural nature retreat at Fox Pen, I will revisit this moment when the outside world is too loud or the expectations of ‘the norm’ linger too long. I will recall this moment as I meditate and ready myself for each day. I am recommitting to approach my days one at a time and not short-changing the time it takes to care for, energize, and pull my own light out into the open.
How about you do the same? Let's see that light of yours. The world around you needs YOU.
This blog is a personal collection of my thoughts, wins, losses, memories, and crossroad moments. Almost all of which were hashed out around my kitchen counter and in my journals. If any of it resonates with you and you are ready to empower your inner badass and move into your Next with confidence, I can help. It’s time… Click the link and Let’s chat.