“Forgive them even if they are not sorry”… a valuable life lesson to learn

Are you in Pain?  Take yourself on a Forgiveness Retreat. I did.

It was August 2010, I was on a church weekend Forgiveness Retreat.   I had heard about the retreat a couple weeks before and knew immediately, with every cell of my body, a 100% yes !, that I needed to get myself there.  No matter what favors or babysitting I had to call in, my heart and soul knew I needed some deep level healing.  I may not have been ready to heal just yet, I was still licking my wounds. I was more at a place where I was trying to practice deep breathing between emotional roller-coaster outbreaks of “Why me?” and “What next?”.

So there I was, at this forgiveness retreat, not having any idea what to expect.  I was new to the divorce journey and I hadn’t quite found my allies of support just yet.  I was too busy processing the pain and trying to accept this new life for myself. On top of this pain distraction I had just moved back home to the bay area and was attending a church I hadn’t gone to since I was in High School.  I was still in a no man’s land, somewhere in between the life I was leading before the “life change” happened and the space in between where I didn’t know quite who to trust, talk to and where to receive support. I was a little lost.  And as a woman who had always prided herself on knowing what she wanted and where she was going this was hard for me.

I walked into the main hall of the retreat center and it was dark and uninviting. I was early. I was the first one there.  Great, this is going to be a long weekend, I thought to myself. Can I still return to my car and take off before anyone see’s me?  Apparently my spirit wanted me to get over myself and be there for healing but my broken heart, overwhelmed mind and distrusting body wasn’t quite on board yet.

Me? somewhere early, that never happens.  Usually I’m squeezing in a workout or an errand and walking in just in time.  But that day I was there early because I was scared.  I was out of my comfort zone but I was also eager to do something different in my recovery.  It had been more than 6 months since I’d started my divorce journey and I wasn’t in a good place yet. Before I had the chance to dart to the door a woman called out to me.  It was the pastor leading the retreat.

There was another reason I was there early.   Before the retreat we could book special prayer time with the pastor throughout the weekend. I nabbed the first spot.  I wanted to be able to tell the pastor if I was crying uncontrollable that I was fine.  I didn’t want the group to worry about me or hold up the itinerary of the workshop.  I wanted her to know my story before the weekend began. It was my tendency to hide, overlook my own needs and take care of others needs before my own.  Not this time. I wanted to heal.  I wanted to have accountability with the pastor who was leading the retreat.  I wanted to have a “deal” that this time I was going to break some of my life long patterns that I was beginning to identify. I didn’t want my life to ever be in this magnitude of depletion, turmoil, loss and grief ever again.  It was too painful.  To great of a loss.

After we met, the pastor walked me outside to a garden spot.  As we sat there overlooking a Mountain view, she told me a little about her story and how she came about to leading the retreat.  I then began to open up to her and share with her my story.

Healing takes admitting you are in PAIN

Why did this retreat call to me? Why am I here?  It had been more than 6 months since my life and marriage relationship had forever changed and I needed more then the weekly counseling sessions and the books I was reading. I needed to find a way to integrate forgiveness into my unraveling marriage relationship or the pain was going to get the best of me.  I wasn’t a fan of forgiveness but I needed to do things differently. I wanted to stop crying.  I wanted to be happy again.

I told the pastor I was going through a separation process with my Husband of 10 years.  We had 2 small children together, age 3 and 4 1/2.  Our separation was a complete surprise to me.  To say the rug was pulled out from under me was an understatement. I never saw our abrupt and painful ending coming.  (Well at that point I was oblivious, I was busy with 2 small children and running a fitness business from my home.  Later as I did more work I did see more pieces of the puzzle I was able to see later, but that is a sharing for another day.)

Even though I wasn’t a fan of forgiveness I instinctively knew that I needed to get my bearings on who I was and what I wanted so that I could make some real life decisions.  Life decisions that would forever impact my family as I knew it.  I didn’t know much about the journey I was on but I did know that I didn’t want to make any decisions out of hurt, anger or fear… I wanted to at least make my important life changing decisions from a neutral place.

Forgiveness work only works if you actually want to set the intention to forgive someone.  I wasn’t there yet. And that was okay.  I was still so resentful to my husband I knew I needed to clear that before I could do the next layers.   Honestly, I had enough self-awareness that I was there that weekend with the intention of hearing people talk about forgiveness not actually ready to take it on the practice for myself. Not yet.

Since that weekend, I have learned again and again, that my soul came here to learn a life lesson. A Life lesson of practicing “FORGIVENESS”…. Note to self, please choose a life lesson a little less traumatic next time, please !?… Thank you.

So in the energy of teaching what we most want to learn…I need to flex my muscle a little and tell you the truth…on that weekend “forgiveness retreat” my wise pastor who heard my story… took a deep knowing breathe and said:

Build your Forgiveness MUSCLE

“Meredith, that’s a lot of forgiveness you will need to access to come through this to the other side.  I know you have the courage and the strength to do this but it is going to take work and a lot of time on your part.  You are an athlete, think of forgiveness as a muscle, this weekend, is only 48 hour container, this forgiveness with your husband is too much to accomplished in such little amount of time.  Let’s think of something small, small disappointments, small betrayals, small heartbreaks…that you can practice working on in the meantime, this way you can build some muscle this weekend and you can keep going when you are ready.”

This pastor was speaking in terms I could understand.  I could practice the way a beginner runner would run a 5k, then work her/his way up to a 10k, then a half-marathon and so on.  Taking each mile a couple blocks or laps around a track at a time.   No runner would just do a Marathon without a lot of work, time and planning.  So neither was I going to forgive my husband overnight in a short weekend.

With this advice I could breathe a little deeper. Or actually start breathing. I think in all the shock and trauma and upheaval in the months leading up to this retreat. I don’t think I had been doing much breathing. Sobbing yes…breathing and surrendering into the process, No!  Accepting it was going to be a long, very long process. No, definitely not.

The Weekend retreat started.  The retreat was full of exercises, ceremony, music, quiet time and prayers.  If you are a place that you too need to admit your pain, try this exercise below. If you are also feeling blocked of giving and receiving love freely in your life also try this exercise, it will help unblock you:

Forgiveness Exercise, start your List:

Step 1) Take out a piece of paper and answer the following questions. Write down names and as many details and emotions that come to the surface for you. Be open, vulnerable and allowing:

Who has hurt you?

Who has told you, that you couldn’t BE something you wanted to BE?

Who has told you, that you couldn’t DO something you wanted to DO?

Who has told you No?

Step 2)  Go back and rank the level of forgiveness on a scale of 1-10 how painful it is to forgive that person.  Work on your lowest levels first, then work your way up this way you will build up your forgiveness muscles and take the time that you need.

Step 3) Keep this list. Meditate daily on this list. Sit with the name, or names. Be in a posture of sending love and forgiveness to the person. Give yourself Grace for as long as this takes.  Keep asking for help and support from those who have walked the forgiveness road too.  Admit that that your journey is hard, then breathe and keep going.

 

More inspiration from the retreat.

Over this weekend I also heard these powerful releasing words,

“Forgive them, even if they are not sorry”

Did that ever take my breathe away.  These words shook me up.  Up until that time all my conditioning had been, that I could forgive someone if they said they were sorry and said the right thing.  Childhood flashbacks of my 2 sisters and I fighting and our parents demanding us to face each other with eye contact, through tears and say we were sorry.

To be honest, my ex-husband did tell me he was sorry over and over again.  In fact, he wrote me over 100 love letters…but I had gone to a place of unforgiving. Trauma and pain will do that to you.   I remember reading his letters and even wanting to hear specific certain words from him.  Nothing was acceptable.  I now know that was my heart had hardened and closed in pain.

The Healing Journey

In my divorce journey I have learned a new ability to strive towards recognize the pain, staying open in the pain and showing up in and with LOVE anyway. This is so tough to learn and can only be learned by practice.  Yes, and in my experience the Universe will send you those exact relationships to practice your needed skills if you need them.  But I promise you, the more I have practiced, the stronger my forgiveness muscles, the more freedom and love I have been able to enjoy in my relationships.

In closing, if you are working on forgiveness muscles I want to leave you with another quote that I have served me in prayer, meditation and journal time in breakthroughs to deeper and deeper forgiveness:

“You can have a grievance or you can have a miracle but you can not have both”  Marianne Williamson.

Some forgiveness mantra’s that have helped me:

“The success of my Relationship is always in my Hands”

“Freedom is a choice. Not something that happens to US”

“I am giving and receiving profound Love”

 

It’s been 8 years since I first started this forgiveness journey, divorce journey, healing journey and I am still going.  And that is okay!  Each person I meet on this journey leads me to a deeper understanding of myself and a lighter perspective of true Freedom.

Yours in Love, Big Love, the kind of love that loves through the pain, sitting in a body with deep healing.

Yours in the healing journey!

Meredith K. Mills

If you are finding yourself facing the need to forgive someone, in pain and struggling through it. You are not alone.  Please contact me through MeredithMillsCoaching.com. I’d be happy to support you on your Life Change and healing journey.  I’ve been there and I can help support you to get to the other side.

 

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Your past is never where you think you left it; my own strength in grief decision to MOVE Back to Oregon

MY past…

Last week my ex and I announced to our two children that there was going to be Big Change in our family.  Seven years ago I left Eugene, Oregon for California.  Now I am moving back and I want to tell you why. The picture above was taken the summer before I left.  My version of this picture was that we were a young happy family.

For family: My husband (at the time) and I loved each other, were best friends, and had two beautiful children, Ryder was 18 months, Carleigh had just turned three.  My heart was full.

For fitness: My husband and I had just completed a 50k the day before; my version of bonding and proving we could still be fit and healthy even while having two young children in tow.

For work: I was achieving my desire to stay home with my two small children and work, I had a thriving boot camp fitness business that I loved and that was successfully serving a tribe of awesome Moms, let alone me and my two children.

Two sides of ever story…

However, I don’t have to tell you that there is ALWAYS two sides of every story/photo; what is seen and what is not seen.  A year later I was to come to find out that my ex had internal work and personal struggles going on that he wasn’t sharing.  Matters of importance for his own soul’s journey, that to be honest, I was too young, naive and rigid to understand. In my own journey I am happy to say I have learned a whole new lens of compassion and forgiveness since then that I did not have access to back then, thus my big move to California. Things were much more involved but in short I will say that I believe that it is only my job to be an expert of my own journey.   I do not have to do my spouse’s (partner, significant other’s) work for them. I can choose to show up, choose to love, choose strength in grief, choose compassion and forgiveness, in every moment. But their work is… theirs!  Just like I would never do my children’s homework for them.

 

Seven years ago my choice was to leave….

The Course in Miracles, says regarding relationships,

“Sometimes the Lesson is to stay, sometimes the lesson is to leave”… 

Where was I seven years ago? To be honest if I remember back then or reread my journal entries, I wasn’t a 100% sure at any moment. I daily, hourly went back and forth on what I felt and thought was best for my heart, my soul and my spirit’s recovery and ultimately what was best for my kids.  I was hurt enough that I longed to find my own deep well of peace and happiness so I could be “the best Mom”, which included being healthy (emotionally, physically and mentally) for them.

When the Universe intervened on my good intentions: I tried to go back to Oregon three months in, but I got in a car accident….

That first summer I did try to go back to Oregon.  It was my daughter’s 5th Birthday.  I had been in California for over three months. I had promised my ex that I would come home from California to celebrate her Birthday as a family.  This is quite a story of it’s own but I will save the details of that story for a sharing on another day.  In short, I had never been in an accident my entire life, thanks to superior fast reaction bike skills. My car lost two tires and had to be towed back to the Bay Area. Don’t worry, no one was hurt!!  It just took three weeks for my car to be fixed, long enough for me to imagine starting a new life in California.

Back to NOW…a quick recap of the last seven years.

For five years I was 100% focused on building, creating and enjoying my life in California. I had set the intention early on to make my separation and divorce “the best thing that ever happened to me”.

For family:  I loved that my children were going to the same elementary school that I had attended and seeing their Grandparents everyday and cousins at least one time a month.

For fitness: I happily trained and raced 70.3 Ironman’s, with an amazing fast bike team, a great track group and daily access to miles of challenging trails and a state of the art swimming pool where I worked. I was in triathlete heaven.

For work: I was thrilled with my full time job at a country club. Personal training, teaching TRX classes before and after work hours and doing the books, billing and payroll for the club during the “off-peak” afternoon hours.

In any moment if you had asked me then how I was, I would have told you that I felt I was doing exactly what I wanted to do and that I was soul happy.  I never thought anything would change.  I even said quite a few times that I would never leave California. (Psst…word from the wise, never say never).  I often told people divorce was the best thing that happened to me because I could live where I felt Alive, Inspired and Content.  That I was thankful and grateful and I had a new lease on life.

But a funny thing happens when you think you have everything you want….I started getting nudges to think about how else my life could look like. The idea of moving back to Oregon routinely made its way into my meditations and journal entries.  I found myself thinking about moving back several times throughout the year.  Yes, especially when I had to endure long summers without my kids or holidays without them.  There were quite a few times in the last three years where I’d “try on” the idea of moving then convince myself I wasn’t ready yet.

“If you wait until you are ready you will be waiting the rest of your life”…

So there is a difference between being “ready” and timing.  As the years have gone by, and especially the last two years as I’ve been fighting my own health challenge of dealing with a benign brain tumor, I was slowly becoming more and more open to the idea of moving back to Oregon. However, each time I’d visit this idea, and explore what it would be like, not enough things were aligning in my thoughts, mindset and emotions, relationships, business and finances so I’d quickly put the idea back on the shelf again.

This last year, however, things changed.  One event after another door’s kept closing abruptly and significantly.   My heart kept longing for something new.  You know that feeling when places, people or thing’s that once held allure, excitement and joy for you all of a sudden are not holding your attention anymore? Yes, that was what I’ve been feeling.  Just a growing nag of “this isn’t it”.

The final decision…

I was in my Doctor’s office this summer. Reviewing how my health was. She asked me on a scale of 1-10 what was my stress level?

“20” I chirped, with no hesitation

We both just looked at each other. I took a deep sigh.  Yes. I need to change this.  It’s time. I breathed into this deeper and deeper. It’s time. In that Doc’s office I declared my need  physically to step off the “hamster wheel” of living in the city, being a single Mom 24/7 thru the school year.  It’s time for some more quiet.  A whole lot of it.  This time it is my brain that needs the healing.  My heart now wants my kids to have more time with their Dad before they are out of the house, and especially this golden time where what their parents say, think and do is as important as their peers think.  ha ha I know, I know, with my daughter who has now turned 12 and is heading into 7th grade this fall I am well aware , that this clock is ticking LOUD and fast.  And my son who is 10 now, to have more father son time with his Dad, the timing could not be more perfect.  My mama heart is happy.

So the time is here.  To take a deep breath and make this all happen.  The minute I said Yes and truly chose this new journey for my children and I.  Doors started opening. Flying open!!  My ex and I had long conversations about what it would look like, how we would tell the kids, and how we could collaborate in making this move back to Oregon happen.   I couldn’t do any of this big move without him and his support. In this same timeline of the last seven years my ex has done his own healing.  He got remarried last summer and I am really happy for him and his new life.

In closing, I want to say, I never thought my life would be this way – But I tell you the good story.  The one of personal growth, showing up everyday with gratitude, compassion and forgiveness.  I know, that I know, that I know that I am a completely different woman than I was seven years ago and I love that!  I see and experience life differently.  I am not so naive, I am not so rigid.  Lordy, do I have a ton more tools to cope with what life throws my way.  I am a lot more open.  It’s all part of my soul’s journey and I am so so proud of the fact that I have gotten to a place that I love and accept everything !! that has ever happened to me.  And with that acceptance has come this new possibility of heading off to Eugene for this new Chapter.  Old hurts and old wounds can heal as needed, they are just stories after all, my intent is to pull forward all the good friends, clients and experiences and focus now on creating Eugene as my new place to feel fully ALIVE, INSPIRED and CONTENT.

There is a huge road of transition and change ahead.  I look forward to giving you the recap on the *for family, *for fitness and *for work that is to come.  Stay tuned.  It’s going to be good.

Thank you for reading!

Meredith K Mills

 

Is there a big life changing decision weighing on your heart?  I encourage you to keep listening to that inner voice because when you are ready “enough” you will know.  If you are ready to rewrite your own story from deficit to abundance, from fear to love, from victim to co-creator, contact me for coaching at MeredithWellnessCoaching.com   Trust me, I have been where you are at and I can mentor and guide you thru your journey.  There is always room for an up-level and a new chapter.  Be strong in your grief.

Forgive them even if they are not sorry…addressing my problem with Doctors, Teachers and Writer’s Block head on. We are all just human…after-all.

When I was a teenager I had 2 incidents that happened months apart.  Both were authority figures telling me I couldn’t DO something.

One, I was able to override and keep pressing on to success anyway…it took me a couple of years but I eventually found my way.  The other I am JUST starting to address.  Let me tell you more.

The first incident was a bike accident that I had had.  I was 16 and loved to run and was on the cross country team.  A bike accident left my limping for a week and into the Doctor’s office.  For some reason my mother dropped me off and wasn’t in the room for the x-ray reading.  The Doctor came and abruptly told me I wouldn’t be able to run again. Did I mention that I loved running?!  Running was my life.   As a High School Junior I was already getting recruited for college programs.  Unfortunately, I had no parent next to me to process the news and steer the conversation into questions or right conclusions. Instead, I just took the Doctor’s words at face value as my heart and running dreams sunk.  From that moment on, I turned to cycling and spent the next couple of years pursuing that.  Cycling became the next thing for me and I channeled my need for fitness, being on the move and adventure through that.

– At age 17 a trip to Germany with a Jr. cycling team

– At age 18 a trip across the country (U.S.A.) with a touring group

– At age 19 joining a collegiate cycling team and learning to race in college

Life was good.  It wasn’t until Spring of my Sophomore year in college (now age 21) that a friend asked me if I could run with her.  “Well no,… I can’t run.” I replied.  What do you mean you can’t run?!?!” she said, “how can you do 100 mile bike rides, and not run?”

“Yeah, you are right” I said as my voice trailed off and I started thinking about it.  That voice inside me saying, yeah, maybe I can run now?!?!  It’s been a long time. Why not try it?  I bought a pair of running shoes a week later.  Low and behold, I’ve run 10 marathons since and running came back into my life.  Healed.

So what about the other incident?  … this one was with a Teacher…

The 2nd incident was just a couple months later, still at 16. I was a new student in a new high school.  I was thrilled one afternoon in a creative writing class as graded papers were being passed out.  We had been assigned to write a play.  The excitement I felt when I saw that I was given an A+ was a complete thrill.   But my joy lasted but a moment.  I didn’t even have a chance to celebrate. As my eyes gazed up the teacher was glaring at me.  Stern eyes, tight lips, gruff voice…. “I want to see you outside”.  She barked at me….

I was shocked, okay… I rose from my seat and bewildered followed her out of the class. Next thing I knew, she was turning my paper over.  There she had written an F, I still remember that red pen.  Next thing I knew  I was being asked, rather told.  “There is no way you could have written this play?  Where did you get this mature content?”  This women was glaring at me demanding where I had plagiarized the play.  I was speechless.  She knew nothing about me. I had poured my heart, observations and creativity onto these pages and she was rejecting them as mine. I started rattling off the plays I had been to as a kid.  I also rattled off the plays I had been in.  I started rattling off the family matters that had grown my wisdom far beyond what was appropriate.   She just kept yelling at me determined to get a confession from me.  I had nothing.  Just a scared young girl looking at a teacher.  She threatened me.  She told me one day she would find that published play and come and get me.

Sadly.  My parents were never called in.  This teacher just decided I was a kid who was cheating.  Not only did she mistreat me the rest of the quarter she had my twin sister the following quarter and her judgement of me followed to my sister as well.

Sadly.  I was young.  I didn’t know better.  I didn’t know that my parents should have been invited into that conversation.  Perhaps they could have stood up for me.  Perhaps they could have validated me and told me to keep writing.  I didn’t really get that this was going to be a block for the rest of my life.  Well, until now!…

It’s never too late to overcome who they told you ~you couldn’t BE or told you~ what you couldn’t do.  

In my healing journey I will say this.  To that English Teacher wherever she is, who told me I was “too good” and it was “impossible” I could have written that play…. let’s just see what I can do now.  I will try to resolve this block one story at a time. And I will write in the energy of healing and a heart opened in forgiveness, not in the energy of anger.  I may or may not ever in my lifetime have an apology from this teacher.  She may never know what she did to my writer’s spirit.  In fact I looked her up in the yearbook and she wasn’t even on staff so I don’t even remember her name.  But none of this matters.  What matters is I have the awareness of the block now and I can show up and work my way through it.

I will send her healing and huge forgiveness anyway.  I am also sending so much healing and huge love and forgiveness to the 16 year old I was who was afraid to put myself out there since. Time to do this differently.

Please take a moment.  Is there something inside you:

-left unexplored?

– left undone?

Just because someone; a parent, a teacher, a doctor, anyone of authority…told you you couldn’t do something?  Well, here I am to say, let’s go do it!

Then of course let me know what you do.

Yours in the Healing Journey

Meredith K. Mills

MKM

Continue reading “Forgive them even if they are not sorry…addressing my problem with Doctors, Teachers and Writer’s Block head on. We are all just human…after-all.”

Need to make a BIG life changing relationship decision? Should you stay or should you go?…this is where I started mine.

 

Sorting through the aftermath of a 10 year marriage is not easy…especially if heartbreak, betrayal, and disappointment is involved.

In my case I had a BIG decision to make:  Should I stay? or….Should I go?  This decision was no joke. I had been married for 10 years to my *ideal mate: Christian, Cyclist, Best Friend.  When this event came to light, we had  2 small children together, age 2 and 3.  I couldn’t just leave.  This decision weighed heavy on me.  In my pain I had to think bigger than the moment, I had to borrow belief and faith that was not mine, I had to be strong and unselfish for my kids, for the big picture of their lives, not just selfish or pulling back in my pain. 

So…what did I do?  I TOOK MY TIME. MY SWEET, PRAYERFUL TIME.  And you should too.

I struggled with this Big Life Change decision for weeks, months actually:

  •  I talked when I needed to talk.
  • I prayed when I needed to pray.
  • I journaled when I needed to journal.
  • I cried when I needed to cry.
  • I unraveled when I needed to unravel.
  • I got angry when I needed to get angry.
  • I yelled when I needed to yell.

You name it… I did it.  For the first time in my life I let ALL my emotions out.

My pastor at the time, the one I met with immediately, within 48 hours of “finding out”. You know that “fun” (sarcastic voice being used here) life altering first week where I cried non-stop and wore sunglasses to preschool pickup because I didn’t want anyone to see how puffy and bloodshot my eyes were.  But I knew the truth, anyone looking at me a mile away KNEW something was wrong. I was far from vibrating at my regular “high on life” , “high energy”, “high vitality” friendly and loving vibration.  I was in shock. I was just a functioning shell. All I could do was cry. Hug my sweet kids and cry again.

My pastor gave me these wise words, these words were a resting place for me to explore my options and honor my feelings and choices:

“Don’t make any decisions for 90 days !!! … you are in shock. You do not need to do anything right away.  You have children with this man, he will be in your life forever.  Don’t leave because you are hurt.  He is a man of God. Ask God what is best for you. Take your time.  Take your time until you know what your answer is.  You have this right.”

In my sadness and broken heartedness I put up that boundary.  TIME, I need my time. This is a LIFE CHANGING decision.  I am in no rush.  My husband was.  He wanted to renew our vows.  I couldn’t. I wasn’t there yet. “What do you mean?” I remember saying after a counseling session, “I don’t know if I can even talk to you without throwing up,…how could I possibly renew my vows?!?!… and then, “Forgive you,?.. I’ve never forgiven anyone in my life”…gulp.  Whew. Truth. Truth is not easy. I knew my weaknesses.

So where did I go from there.  I needed to make a decision that was for my higher good, for my children’s higher good but I had zero connection to myself.

Dear SELF…What do you want?…..

I did not know what I wanted.  I am a Mom with 2 small children, running a business out of my home with no childcare, what do you mean want?

Dear SELF…How do you feel?

Feel?… all these feelings I was feeling were not familiar to me. I didn’t know what to do with the amount of judgment seething and anger and resentment flowing thru me. This was unknown territory for me.  Not to mention the inner child who sure had her days of pity party ….”This is not what I signed up for?!?!: I remember saying.

Dear SELF…Who do you want to be?

I don’t know, I am so confused and disappointed, Me BE? Who is this man in front of me?  He is NOT the man I married. The man I married would have “never” done that to me. ..

These questions continued for months.  After 4 months of this level of soul searching I DID decide to leave.

On March 21, 2010, I loaded my kids up for a 2 week vacation, leaving Oregon for some rays of healing sunshine in California where friends and family were waiting for me with open loving arms.  That 2 week “healing vacation” however, slowly evolved into a long-term {Fresh Start} but that is a sharing for another day.

In the meantime, if you too are facing a real life change decision I can not tell you enough to:

Take your TIME.  BE true to YOURSELF.  Honor and cycle thru all your emotions. Take Care of yourself. Surround yourself with people who will love you but not tell you what to do.  When you know, you will know.

In Big Love,

Meredith

mkm

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Divorce Recovery 5 years out: Showing up with more love and more forgiveness

Feb. 26, 2017

I had a “Facebook memory” this a.m. and was moved to recognize THIS woman I was 5 years ago!!!
There I was….facing Change, Loss and Transition. In 1 day my life as I knew it changed. Security, Love, Marriage, Trust, Faith, Safe Harbor, Comfort, etc etc was gone.
What did I do?…in that deep valley of pain?…, all I knew was to focus #1 on God and I asked him over and over and over,…in anger, in frustration, in Why Me?, in tears, in fear, on my knees, in weeping, in prayer, in sadness, in disappointment, in loneliness, in weakness…..and the answers kept coming.
The Best thing I did was find myself, find my strength.
I returned to my outer strength of being a Competitive Athlete.
What was life giving to me? I returned to running, biking, swimming. These adventures and workouts made me feel free, strong, and that my whole life was ahead of me and that I could handle “anything” that was coming my way, not that my life was “over”…..It also helped me move thru all the emotions I was experiencing.
So today I celebrate!! Wahoo! Cheers to this Woman I was 5 years ago, on the cliff’s just north of UCSB. Enjoying the beach, the trails, the salt water air, the breathtaking views of the ocean, the sounds of the waves. Soaking it all in. I was also the fittest I’d ever been (2 months out from qualifying for Triathlon World Championships, and 1 month out from PR half marathon 1:35!! beating the PR I set when I was 24!! That felt good to have my body at optimal health and performance.
And to the emotional part, the inner strength that has all continued to be work in progress. After I reclaimed and built up those outer muscles the inner strength has followed. I have continued to spend the last 5 years of realigning myself with God and his plans for my life, working thru relationships that have grown me and challenged me. And of course the health and healing journey!!
Now it is a continued cycle of renewing my faith in my future by being more present then I’ve ever been able to be. Taking time out to meditate, pray and show up FULLY every day, in ALL my relationships with
#forgiveness
#love
The 35 year old version of me was so set on what my life was suppose to be AND I didn’t have the tools to surrender and forgive when that life path, life expectation changed.
The 40+ version of me keeps saying….. build that muscle, build that muscle, build that muscle. AND keep going…..
Showing up with more love, more forgiveness, more love, more forgiveness.
Sending you all much HOPE this morning.
Hugs in the healing journey!!!

Meredith

mkm

How to use {Gratitude Tags} to make a major life change decision

Identify your Life Purpose with this single question. What to say yes to, what to say no to.

October 2014

Are you in touch with what in life makes you your Happiest?  Most people are not.  The statistic is that only 1 in 100 people know what they want.  For me it took facing a career path life change to go deep and get my top 5 answers. What are yours? I found using a Gratitude Tag helped me connect to what I valued most and wanted. Read more to find out about how you can to.

I give you permission today to pause and give yourself some time to ask yourself this question: When are you your Happiest?  Personally, I find this an important decision making direction question when it comes to charting out the course of my life.  Once you’ve answered this question for yourself, and taken it one step further by writing it down you open yourself up to daily connecting to what makes you Happy. Being in touch daily with what makes you happy and come alive also helps facilitate you prioritizing these things. And please don’t stop at just one thing, make your list, first the top 3, then 5 more, keep going until you have 10!

Why is, “What makes you happy?” such a fundamental key soul connection question to ask yourself.  Soul seeking, spirit answering, go deep kind of question?  Personally, I found out this the hard way.  Not prioritizing all my values was a mistake I made for years.  I unconsciously carried a torch that being a competitive athlete; cycling or triathlon training or just great fitness in my own body made me so HAPPY “the rest” didn’t matter.  The other all important life components; like financial security, loving growing relationships, life purpose career path, time for myself were falling by the wayside.  I got lost in the stuck belief that “who was I to have everything I wanted.  Now that has changed.  I finally learned how to “do” life differently. This path, journey and belief system I followed for so many years wasn’t wrong …it was just limited thinking.

Just because you are happy in one area in your life doesn’t mean YOU CAN’T be happy in ALL areas of your life!!  Truth be told, allowing yourself to be happy in just one area  of your life is “settling”.  You don’t have to settle.  You only have one life and it can get good, really good!  How good are you going to let your life get?  You will have to do some work but you don’t have to settle. When you are not in touch with your true Heart’s Desires it is easy to forget this. If you are reading this then ask yourself,  “is this the time in my life for me to take on a new mindset that having it all is possible?  What does having it all it look like to you?  for you?

A year ago, in the Fall of 2013, I was making the decision to become a Life Coach. I was on a weekend get away with my boyfriend; my children’s Father had splurged for a trip to Disneyland so I had splurged for a weekend in one of my favorite, okay #2 favorite, Healing Spots: Solage Resort in Calistoga, CA. ( YES, Santa Barbara being my #1 healing and spiritual place).

The entire weekend I continued to work thru my mental {pros and cons list} of weither or not to commit to a vigorous, challenging and expensive 1 year program,  what kind of changes and sacrifices would this program mean to my already overstuffed busy life?  Again that negative limiting belief, “Who was I to really go for it in my life?”.  Then the universe gave my soul searching heart a gift.  The gift came in the form of brightly colored “Gratitude Trees”.

On that fall weekend get-a-way I woke up and did an early morning run thru downtown.  Just next to Indian Springs Resort (another wonderful place) I found some Gratitude Trees in downtown Calistoga.  The Trees were loaded with bright orange tags. They caught my eye and I re-routed off my course and ran closer to take a look.  As I got closer I realized that these brightly colored tags were full of  other people’s written heart’s desires. Each tree was labeled a theme;

  • past loves
  • what do you want more of
  • what do you want less of
  • what makes your happiest
  • what’s the best decision you ever made

I memorized the themes and ran back to my hotel to think, pray and journal about where I was and what I wanted to say. On the next morning I ran by the gorgeous brightly colored gratitude trees again.  This time I was ready to stop and write my answers down.

In reflecting back, this one, “I’m Happiest When….” meant the most to me.  I believe the power of this question aligns you with your LIFE PURPOSE and brings clarity to what you say “yes” to and what you say “no” to…everyday. Everyday in every moment, in every hour, in every action big or small, loving or not loving.  Don’t you want to be aligned in every step of your life to what you really want?

In October 2013, these were my TOP 5 heart’s desire’s, my own heart and soul offerings that I now continue to connect to and live by,
I’m happiest When:
…I have Love in my Heart
…My Family & Soulmate by My Side
…Money in the Bank
…A lasting influence of Health & Fitness
…A Healthy Body to Run, Bike & Swim

At the time I wrote this tag I was truly connecting to what makes me happiest and what I desired. However, in truth and reality I only had 1 of these 5 things where I wanted them in my life. So when I got back from that weekend I knew I had to take my own Leap of Faith and invest in a life coaching certification program that would support me doing the personal development necessary to investigate and take action to boost myself out of deficit and into the things I valued as important to my life and happiness. What a move.

Taking time to be connected with what makes you Happiest, might seam like everything from too much work… to a waste of time or just plain frustrating, regardless I encourage you to take the necessary steps to connect with what you really want.  In no time at all these things were alive, real and vibrant in my life.  In all my years of coaching since, I’ve never heard anyone not benefit from connecting to their soul or slowing down to ask the right prayerful questions and hear their spirit speak.

I challenge you today to put yourself in touch with what really matters to you.  Close your eyes, breathe in and out deeply and identify it, or borrow my favorite technique,  figure it out during a workout.

I also encourage you to use the idea of the GRATITUDE TREE to make your own Gratitude Tags, after you have done your work, please feel free to leave your favorites below in the comments.  Pick up some brightly colored tags and sharpie pens from your favorite office store or craft store.  Ask your kids or your significant other or friends to write their’s too.

Write it down and you are half way there to your Happiest.

Your partner in the soul-seeking journey!

Meredith

mkm

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I’m happiest when I have love in my heart, my family and soulmate by my side, money in the bank, a lasting influence of health & fitness, a healthy body to bike, run and swim.