I spent a good portion of my young adult life blind to my purpose and passion. When my son began playing soccer at age 3 (now age 12) I coached a few of his soccer teams. Upon watching my coaching work with the young soccer players, my spouse at the time told me I was in the wrong profession.
I didn’t get it at the time because I loved what I was doing. I had a great job in the public finance and policy department at one of the top law firms in my city working as a certified paralegal. I got to connect with clients, research, and write – 3 of my favorite things to do!
Somehow the universe kept guiding me back to working with youth. I began working with youth as a mentor in a federally funded program called Peer Assisted Leadership when I was 17. I absolutely loved the work. I had the experience of working with youth one-on-one and working with a co-mentor in a classroom.
That experience led me to study early childhood education and psychology, but then I felt like there wasn’t enough money in that career so I switched to law.
It’s strange how when you are really supposed to do something and you aren’t doing that thing you have been called to do on this planet, surreptitious messages begin to surround you and if you are tuned into those messages with the least bit of curiosity they pull you into a state magnetism.
While this state of magnetism feels ethereal and amazing, it felt as if it slowly faded, too. At least it did at the time.
When I was coaching my son’s soccer team or mentoring youth in my younger years I felt lit up and alive. I also felt some of this magnetism. But, for whatever reason, it wasn’t enough to hold my interest to dive into the curiosity more deeply.
Nope, that was too easy and I’ve never really been attracted to the easy stuff in life. For curiosity to really blossom and to keep me in a state of magnetism, tragedy played a critical role in my life that helped me discover my purpose.
Before I go any further, let’s look at how I’m using purpose here. Purpose defined in this context is used as a noun, “the reason for which something exists or is done, made, used etc.”
I remember when I was in the university and law school that professors would remind us when writing essays to get accepted into various programs of study that I needed a good story and a painful event would be a great subject.
Certainly I had painful events (as we all do) happen in my life, but I had numbed them out of my life. Why talk about them formally? I didn’t get it and I remember trying to be very philosophical and intellectual about my purpose. I attached onto freedom and independence, two core values that have guided my life, but when I wrote some of those essays, the deep emotion of it all was missing.
I now see that I was being completely inauthentic with who I was and who I wanted to be in the world most of my young adult life! Then the tragedy of all tragedies brought me down to my knees – in pain, confusion, indescribable heartbreak and complete surrender.
My former spouse of 16 years and father to my now 12-year old son committed suicide. I thought the tumultuous divorce, the years of alcoholism, depression, and abuse that saturated our marriage were enough. The universe said NO.
I’ll save the details of that intimate story for another time, but what I want you to know from that share is that pain stared at me from all directions and there was no more room to be blind or to numb.
I surrendered completely. And, once again tuned into the surreptitious messages that began to surround me with more velocity. With unprecedented levels of curiosity I was pulled back into a state of magnetism. It’s been so wondrous, I haven’t left and I don’t plan to.
Living an authentic life has a strong attractive power. That’s the magnetism I’m referring to. The suicide tragedy propelled me into this seemingly perpetual state of being.
For some of us, the small nudges of pain will propel us into this state of magnetism. For others, it will take the force of war in your heart to occur. Yet, for many of us, we might remain stuck in the numbing out of all that heavy emotion and never discover our purpose.
We cannot be authentic without freedom. And, we can’t unlock our purpose without both.
Freedom is a birthright. I mean here “the power to determine action without restraint” with love, unity, and connection at the core of the action.
I want you to be free the way I have discovered what it truly means to be free. It’s why I get up in the morning. It fuels my work as a health and wellness educator, writer, and youth mentor. It’s what brought me back home to work with youth. Honestly, it fuels every part of my life.
It’s also why I wrote my book, Today’s Gonna Be Awesomesauce: Daily Meditations for Youth, Parents, and Families. Whether you are slowly nudging towards surrendering to your pain, teetering between numbing out and letting go, or you are going through a massive tragedy, or just relishing in the okay-ness of life, my book will help you discover your authentic voice and will help you be free – whether you are young, a parent, an educator, or a student – it will help you be truly free. Free to create. Free to learn. Free to laugh. Free to play. Free to love. Free to be you.
My book will help you unleash your freedom and unlock your purpose. It will also help your families and students unlock their purpose because the foundation of our success at any age is the freedom to be – to be authentic, to learn, and to create.
The meditations and mantras in my book will teach you how to get unstuck in small, incremental, everyday ways.
If you don’t have it on your nightstand, desk, in your classroom, or in your favorite reading nook yet, click on the link below and purchase your copy.
Still not sure yet? Read my sparkly reviews on Amazon –
I know what it’s like to live a life without authenticity and freedom. I understand the power of pain. It helped me unlock my purpose and I want to help you, your families, and your students unlock theirs.
As Nelson Mandela said, “For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.”
Reminding us all to make our every day an awesomesauce day!