I was at an event this weekend, working in a booth for One Radiant Life, and when I mentioned that I had a class available, her immediate response was ‘Sorry, I don’t have time for that.’
If I could have shared my heart with her, this is what I would have said. I would tell her that for many, many of my years as a mom (15 already), that I would have said the same thing. I literally poured myself into my family, at the expense of myself. However, since hindsight is 20/20, as they say, I know where that led me. It led me to adrenal burnout, depression, and a complete loss of myself, of knowing who I was and what I even enjoyed doing. My identity was so wrapped up in being a mom and meeting the needs of my family that I didn’t know myself anymore. Looking back, it makes perfect sense. You can’t take and take and take from anything without replenishing it — not your refrigerator, not your sock drawer, not your bank account, and not your life. I was literally running on Empty. Everything I did felt so hard…. I didn’t know how other people could live full lives when I could barely make it through my day. At my lowest point, I was sure that my family would be better off without me around. It was my dark night of the soul.
The lessons learned were the starting seeds of One Radiant Life — the reason that I’m so passionate about helping women, especially moms, to learn true self-care practices and to explore their dreams, passions and purpose. I want to model for my daughters what I truly want for them — to follow their dreams, to have meaningful work that feels like play, that invigorates and excites them.
It’s perfectly fine if you’re not ready for my class right now, but it’s not OK if you’re not doing something that is just for you on a regular basis. Something that lights you up, that you can get lost in. Something that deeply nourishes you from the inside. It could be dancing, drawing, running, throwing pottery, riding a horse, journaling, whatever it is that’s just for you. Because when you come back to your family afterward, they (and you) will know that it was well worth it. Because when you return, you’re refreshed and rejuvenated. You feel light, happy, and engaged again. And if you don’t have that something, then start experimenting. Try some new things and see what you love. You might surprise yourself (and your family)! Yesterday, I was thrilled to walk around our round pen with our pony right at my shoulder, of his own free will – no lead rope or halter – following my every move. When I stopped, he stopped. When I turned, he turned. When I ran, he ran. I felt joy in my heart and had a smile on my face.
So mamas — where are you at in your own life right now? Are you filling your own cup or are you running on empty?