Thoughts on a thriving life.
I have a memory of a feeling. It’s the feeling of being stuck, drowning in mire of what is. Waking up in a life I thought I wanted and wondering why I felt death rather than joy. Forcing the feeling of happiness, but numbness obstructing my soul from feeling anything at all.
I look back at the snapshots of that life and it was beautiful from the outside, a happy couple, two beautiful and healthy boys, a comfortable home, and good family and friends. Life was full of good things but inside I felt lost in my own life.
And then that life was gone. The happy couple became individuals, the home was sold and yet, here I sit four years later on a rainy Saturday morning and the snapshot of my life profoundly different but joy dances in my heart and into the rhythms of my life.
Four and a half years ago, I woke-up to the truth that I can either let life happen to me or I can choose to live the life I’m created for, a life that is more then just surviving each day. God knew what He was doing when He made me. I am not an accident and nor are the gifts and talents He has given me. And neither are you.
This fall, I was given the challenge of writing down my impossible dream. First thought, “No way!” There is a reason the dreams hold the labeled “impossible!” To give voice to these dreams would mean I wanted them. Burried deep within me kept them safe and secret. If no one knew, then I could not fail.
I avoided the task like I do with everything else I don’t want to do. I stayed busy. I cleaned the bathroom. I baked. I went for runs. I did homework duty with passion, drove taxi between football and soccer practices and when I could no longer run away from it, I sat down late one night and started writing.
The first sentence was hard. The second one easier and then it started to flow out of me. I didn’t stop to read what I’d written and if the absurdity of what I was dreaming threatened my writing, I pushed through and kept writing. I laughed out loud at some of the ideas that came out and cried tears for others that felt absolutely impossible. And then I walked away from it.
A few days later, I met with a life coach I was working with. She asked if she could read my dream to me. Nervousness immediately filled my heart nevertheless a very hesitant yes came out of my mouth. As Melissa read my dream, tears streamed down my face as I heard the beautiful reality that was living inside me. And really as she read, that’s what it became, not a dream but a reality. When I wrote down what seemed impossible, when I gave voice to the dreams inside, I made the first step in knowing the next place to move in creating life from the core of who I am and not from the perfect picture I spent years hiding behind.
To dream is to dare to live life to the fullest. To give voice to the dreams is the first step in the possibility of impossible dreams.
Its been a few months since I first wrote my impossible dream. I am starting to see pieces of this new reality show up in my life and guess what…its absolutely beautiful.
We had a string of strong April showers role through our neighborhood yesterday. The boys and I drove through one of these showers on our way to church. However in true April fashion, the sun was also shining so bright that I had a hard time seeing. And so began our rainbow hunt.
Each of us craned our necks looking for the rainbow we felt certain the rain and sun would create and our search was rewarded with a beautiful rainbow against the stormy sky.
Rainbows are the reflection of the colors in light. Most of the time I can't see the color in the light. However, when the light shines through the rain, a beautiful sight unfolds before my eyes.
Rainbows are also a reminder to me of promises. God put a beautiful rainbow in the sky for Noah as a promise of his love, goodness and faithfulness. They remind me to not focus on what I see, especially in the midst of a storm, but rather to focus on what I know to be true.
For most of us, some aspect of life does not look as we imagined or dreamed. Maybe its our history, something that happened in the past that fills us with grief or shame. Maybe its our present reality.
For me, life as it exists right now, is so far outside of what I imagined my life looking. I had the opportunity to share my story with someone this past weekend and in someways it felt like I was telling someone else's story. Being divorced and a single-mom was never a thought that crossed my mind.
Honestly, this past month has been hard. The divorce was finalized and our family home was sold. While we have been separated for over 18 months, the reality and finality of everything has surfaced my grief over the death of a dream and my fear for the future. I have felt drained and empty. Both of these feelings are warning signs to me to take a step-back because something is not right. As I look back I realize my focus has been on the storm. All I am seeing is the loss, grief and fear instead of looking for the rainbows. The rainbows appear as I ask God to shine His light in the storm.
My rainbows...God's promises are eternal. They are true whether I see them or not. His love for me is never ending, never-giving up, unchangeable. He is my provider, my comforter, my defender. These are my light in the storm. They are what give me hope and joy, even in the midst of my storm.
As you read, consider...What are the storms that keep you from seeing the rainbows? My challenge to myself and to you this week is to stop and ask for the Light to shine through the storm and show you the rainbows. I would love to hear your story or thoughts. Feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Hannah is a PCI Certified Parent Coach® and owner of Foundations Parent and Life Coaching. She is passionate about working with parents and individuals who want to build the foundation for a thriving life. If you are interested in working with her on any parenting or life challenges, you can contact her at email@example.com
In the fall of 2012, my life turned upside down. When my marriage of over 10 years suddenly and dramatically fell apart, I found myself waking up to the reality that I was drowning myself in the busyness of life. It had been my desire to live with purpose and intention for many years but I had allowed small and seemly harmless things to take up residence in my life. The constant checking of Facebook, the obsessive following of blogs, and the pursuit of a "perfect" body had robbed me of living each day present and purposeful for that day. I was awaken to the fact that fear was driving my choices and beliefs. I have known from a young age that I was created for relationship with God and that I was loved by Jesus. But there is a difference between knowing and living. There is no fear when I choose to live by faith. In this season, I learned what it meant to live free from fear and fully present in the gifts of today. I learned to put my phone down and to step away from the computer. I learned to stop being busy and start playing with my kids. I learned to let go of how far or fast I'd run and enjoy the act of moving and being. I learned to laugh and to find joy even in the midst of a painful season.
During this season, I found myself with two young boys that I needed to support and a desire to work with people so that they could too experience life fully present and purposeful. As I researched different options, I stumbled across the Parent Coaching Institute. I had never heard of parent coaching before but as I researched it more, my heart knew this was what I wanted to do. Parent Coaching is a newer field. Coaches partner with parents in a unique relationship that shifts the focus onto what are the gifts and strengths of the family and uses those strengths as the foundation for designing action steps that will move that family towards their preferred future.
I will graduate in March as Certified PCI Parent Coach®. I have started my own coaching practice called Foundations Parent and Life Coaching. My heart is to work with parents and individuals who want to build a solid foundation for a life that thrives. Parenting and living takes being purposeful otherwise busyness and distractions will crowd out the things that are truly important. Sometimes we come to a season of life where we need to be purposeful in establishing healthy rhythms for ourselves and our families. That is when working with a coach can be beneficial. The coaching relationship is all about partnership. We partner together to establish the rhythms that will help you and your family be your best selves. What I know to be true is that when I am working towards being my best self, I give a gift to my children that will impact their future in the best way possible. If you have questions, thoughts or would like more information about parent coaching, e-mail me of give me a call. (503-805-9021)
As a woman, mom, friend, and lover of Jesus, it is my desire to live present and wholeheartedly in each moment of my life. Daily Rhythms is full of thoughts, encouragement, parenting information, and my personal journey in living wholehearted in the daily rhythms of life.