2019 was a year flooded with memories, milestones, and magic. In 2019, I expanded my worldview. I decided I could be both unique AND confident. 2019 was the year I mastered balance.
I believe in taking big, bold, bizarre risks: I believe in cramming a family of five into a 1,000 sq. ft home instead of building the brick, suburban two-story in the gated neighborhood. I believe in looking for an outdoor adventure on Saturdays instead of burning up the roads keeping up with travel-league sports. I believe in seeking out community events during my free time instead of binge-watching Netflix originals. I believe in backpacking with my children in Central America instead of driving to Florida for an annual beach trip. I have committed my life to living with less so we can experience more. These values are at the core of my being, and even though practicing these ideals seems “bold,” these practices come easily to me. I’ve always been comfortable with different or offbeat (see my first ever post where I describe my angsty, average adolescence). Owning and living out my values keeps me grounded, but I have also been guilty of allowing my focus on my truth to limit my growth potential.
In January 2019, I looked in the mirror to see a person who had fought many emotional battles and survived. Though she was survivor, she was a person who desperately needed growth. Just like any other chronic perfectionist, I keep a well-cataloged planner that includes nerdy planner perks, such as goal setting pages. In my 2019 planner, I wrote, “This will be your year.” I also scribbled, “bold” as my “word of the year.” (Try to withhold your judgments of my typical white girl behaviors. I’m being vulnerable here.) I’ve arguably always been pretty bold, passionate, decisive, and maybe even intimidating. I was setting a goal to reach a different kind of boldness. I wanted to face obstacles that truly scared me: the small things. The small things are those things I can’t simply rely on my faith to achieve. In 2019, I was determined to work harder than I had ever worked to build a space for growth in my life and push for growth in the lives of others.
I am most comfortable with reading, writing, and meaningful conversations with the persons I trust most (my people). I didn’t have much time for writing last year. Instead, I embarked on a journey to grow into two roles that scared me the most: 1. Stay at Home Mom 2. Business Owner.
I stayed home with my three girls for more than a year. I learned that being a stay at home mom actually means less time for peace of mind. You don’t have quiet moments driving to and from work alone or the excuse of being too busy to stay on top of the laundry. You don’t have the excuse of missing class parties and field trips because you can’t take the time away from work. Stay at home mom requires the art of true balance. It taught me to say yes to hard things because I should, I could, and I am enough. It taught me that my children (adoptive) can heal and grow into thriving, resilient children. It also taught me that I am much better at being a working mom (I would like to take this moment to humbly praise the long-term stay at home moms who are killing it at the most difficult yet unappreciated job in existence). To successful endure the role of stay at home mom, one must believe in herself and accept herself (and yes–even love herself). My mediocrity didn’t hinder my family’s growth or my growth as a mother.
In the past, as a mental health provider in a regional mental health position, I knew I was passionate about counseling and a person’s ability to heal through his or her struggles relying on self as the most active tool. I also knew my killer memory, intuition, and organizational skills were a huge part of my career success thus far. Friends, there are a lot of other necessary attributes to owning a business, especially a medical/behavioral health practice that I didn’t come by naturally. I had to (maybe not like but) be okay with rejection. I had to (again not like but) be okay with vulnerability. With the support and encouragement of my husband, the priceless aid of my friend and only employee, and my own stubborn, work ethic at the very fabric of my existence (thanks, Dad), my dream came to life. The gap I saw in mental health services in my community is effectively being filled… by my practice and my services. My mediocrity didn’t hinder my professional progress.
I’m starting 2020 with a new word: Fearless. No pull or passion in my heart is too big or too heavy. I am balanced, and my support has grown thanks to that year that grew me. I am 100% mediocre, but that’s the beauty of humanity. Aren’t we all mediocre yet capable of extraordinary things? Just paint the room black. There’s a loud beauty within the mediocrity. Find it. Bust the speakers. Never turn it off.