Well, sort of.
As my old co-worker Lee used to say, “Lord willing and the creek don’t rise….” (which is a true statement if you near where I am with all of this RAIN), I will be 38 years old on Sunday. And I am thankful. I mean REALLY thankful.
Don’t let the pretty pictures fool you. It’s been a fight. When I got up on my 37th birthday and went to teach boot camp and train clients, I was feeling miserable, for several reasons. I was thankful to be standing upright because I had been secretly severely depressed for close to two weeks. I look back at those moments and remember the strength and effort it took for me to rise up from the clutches of that despair. Those skills would be what I needed to make it through this year.
But I don’t want to talk about that.
In the past year, I ran the Warrior Dash (went to Canton, Ohio for the first time), did the inagural Pretty Girl Mud Run (went home to Chicago for that), did the inaugural Beat the Juggernaut run (Franklin, TN) and ran my first (and probably only….just keeping it real) half marathon here in Huntsville. I became a Master Trainer for Piloxing (traveled to Atlanta, Chicago, Charlotte, Virginia Beach, Birmingham and Nags Head), got to go back to NYC (love my IIN family and Manhattan), got to go to Philly for the first time
(yay, Intensati!) and did some pretty rock star things at home like the Miles Blackwell Foundation Zumba benefit class and, of course the recent What’s Beautiful class this week. I’ve taught boot camps, online courses, been to workshops, danced at church for the first time in years, saw my son get baptized, been on television, in the newspaper and everywhere in between. And, oh…FINALLY got my automatic tea maker from Teavana for Christmas. Can’t forget that one.
And you know what I learned? Life keeps moving. And I am either going to keep moving with it or get ran over by it.
I stopped spending a lot of time “looking” for my “before” shots. Truth is, I never liked taking pictures. My kindergarten picture is everyone’s favorite because I SMILED. And it’s ONLY because my aunt promised me cookies if I did (which my uncle ate on the way to my house but I think I am finally over it). I never thought of them as “before” pics because I didn’t realize how BIG I was. I was just miserable and didn’t want to be seen. Most of the pictures are not pictures of me really posing. They are random shots. When I decided to start on my weight loss journey there was no Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. It was me and the desire to be better for my son and for myself. And while I think all of that is great, I have found myself caught up in trying to show what I have done. Shoot, 38 years, straight out of Robert Taylor with a magnet school education, two degrees, several professional certifications, two thriving children, a business I believe in, faith that sustains me, money to eat the way I choose and stretch marks to prove where I’ve been…..if THAT doesn’t show my success I don’t know what will. A picture will never show where I’ve been.
Oprah has a quote that reads, “I had no idea that being your authentic self could make me as rich as I’ve become. If I had, I’d had done it a lot earlier.” That’s where I am now, reviewing what was, renewing in the beauty of who I authentically am (yeah, I love me some salsa music and kale but break out the percolator and make some tofu taste like Harold’s Chicken and I’m there!) and rebranding, taking off all of the layers of things and thoughts I thought I needed.
F7 Wellness was more a dream, a fantasy, a montage of others’ visions. I saw what others were doing and wanted my business to sound like theirs and be structured like theirs. And while who I am will never change, how I do business and how I want to reach people will. I’m going in. And I am ready to change the game.
And it starts with a new name for my business. We’ll talk about it later. 🙂