How my son’s near drowning at a Pool made me forever thankful for his life

Today is Memorial Day. For our family it marks 4 years since my son Ryder’s near drowning accident.  I enter this day with humble reverence.  I don’t miss for a moment how lucky we are that we tell this version of the story.  To be honest there is no holiday spirit in me, there is a nagging need for reflection and deep thanks, a desire to honor that day and its events, praise my son for how strong and brave he was and make sure everyone I know stays SAFE in the pool.

This experience I want to tell you about is by far the scariest day of my life as a Mom.  I think we do so much as parents to bring our children into this life and love and care for them in every moment, the last thing that any of us want to do is face the thought of losing them.  This day however, was the day in my life that I experienced first hand the thought of losing my son and how thin the veil between life and death is. The memory of this event will always remind me that it is way too easy to take for granted our children’s lives.

Leading up to the accident

My kids and I were attending a crowded busy Memorial Day pool party at our swim club. Both my kids, my daughter age 8 at the time and my son age 7, were strong, confident swimmers and had spent an average of 3 days a week swimming at this pool since they could remember. This pool was familiar and a second home to them.

It was the end of a busy 4 day weekend. It was also the first weekend of the year that the lifeguards were on duty so my kids were besides themself with excitement that the diving board in the deep end of the pool (12 feet deep) was going to be open.

Even though it was a long holiday weekend and weather that begged for swimming I had intentionally stayed away from the club all weekend. I had even intentionally gone late in the afternoon to the pool party to avoid the crowds.  It was just after 5:30pm on Memorial Day.  I had just glanced at my watch and was thinking about packing up and heading home soon.  My kids and I had been at the pool nearing 2 hours and that was about as long as we usually stayed. The entire time my kids had been having so much fun playing with each other and playing with friends from school.  They had been going off the diving board again and again, smiling from ear to ear, waving to me from the long diving board line and having a complete blast.

When the whistle sounded

The next thing I knew the Lifeguard was frantically blowing her whistle and clearing the pool.  I looked over to where she was and I instantly saw my son’s swim trunks on the side of the pool. He was lying down. ‘Why is my son lying down‘ was my first thought.

To this day I can’t quite put into words what it felt like to see my son lying limp, face down on the pool deck. And trust me that scene is burned clearly into my memory. I heard my breathe catch and my voice whisper ‘that’s Ryder‘ and in a moment I was standing over my son.  The lifeguard was busy clearing all the kids and parents out of the pool and away from Ryder but she recognized me and allowed me to come close to him.

He has a pulse!” she said.

I had no idea how serious the accident was so those words didn’t mean anything to me until later.

As she said that, the Lifeguard lifted Ryder’s arm up and rolled him onto his back.  I watched as my eyes fixated on Ryder to see his open eyes roll to the back of his head.  Terrified,  I dropped instantly to the ground. Something greater in me held this moment together. I experienced that surreal feeling of witnessing and participating in the events but my emotions were in a frozen trans state.  Somehow,… I remained calm and 100% focused on Ryder.  Somehow,… I knew exactly what to do. Instinctively, I heard a voice inside me say ‘call to him’.  I laid down next to Ryder on the pool deck, holding his small hand in mine and just started calling his name.

“Ryder”

“Ryder, Mom is here”

“Ryder, come back to me”

“Ryder, you are safe”

“Ryder, come back”

There was a confidence, a calmness, and strength in my voice that was above my fear in the situation.

Ryder remained unconscious as the lifeguard had now propped him up to lay on his side. I continued holding onto his hand, calling to him and staring into his now closed eyes. I didn’t think for a moment, “What if he doesn’t come back?!”  My baby.  My son.  I just stayed in the belief that he belonged here and my job was to tell his soul that.

Then there was the miracle moment jolt.

What seamed like an eternity but someone told me later was more like 2-5 minutes, I felt a jolt, a miracle moment jolt… Ryder’s chest heaved a breath so big he started coughing. His eyes popped opened. Our eyes locked immediately. It was like the same moment when he was born and the doctor laid him on my stomach and his eyes popped open to meet me.  In that precious life moment, I found myself saying the same words as I did at his birth:

“You are here”

“Thank God! YOU are here”

Ryder continued to gasp and uncomfortably cough blood.  His eyes closed to rest as I could tell he didn’t have much strength.  “My throat hurts” he complained as he tried to touch his throat. I was being handed small white towels to continue to wipe his face and hands of the blood he was coughing up.  The blood didn’t even phase me, all I cared about was that this beautiful brave boy of mine was conscious and alive. “You are going to be okay,” I said again and again, as if willing it to happen. “You are going to be okay, you are going to be okay” my voice kept assuring both him and me.  I continued to talk to him and keep him calm as the paramedics arrived.

I stood when the paramedics raised Ryder’s stretcher. The only strength in my legs to stand was the powerful knowing that Ryder was at least conscious. Fatal drownings take 3-4 minutes. Ryder was at the bottom of the pool for 1-2 minutes. As a Mom who loves deeply, if I even think of this longer than a moment I am tearfully undone.

Friends were everywhere offering help. It was quite a blur. Somehow I was able to get a dress over my bathing suit and friends promised to take care of Carleigh, Ryder’s Big Sis, who had bravely watched the whole thing. I gave her a loving and relieved squeeze, ” I love you sweetheart, your brother is going to be okay”.  Feeling with every breath, heart beat and cell in my body that when it comes down to life and death moments your loved ones really are the only ones you can think about.

Once in the ambulance the magnitude of what had just transpired started sinking in.

I was texting Ryder’s Dad to tell him what had happened. I praised God for Ryder’s consciousness and asked Erik to lift him up in prayer as we headed to the hospital to make sure he was alright. We had no idea what injury Ryder had experienced in the accident. All we knew was he was conscious and breathing.

Breath !! My friends, IS LIFE.

We arrived at the ER. For 3 hours Ryder complained of his neck and back being in pain. I didn’t even want to think  about the horrible “what if” questions that were racing through my head…like what if a kid had jumped on him from the diving board and he was paralyzed…what if my son could never be an athlete, or a cyclist, or, or…’Don’t even think that‘ the voice inside me took over. I intentionally tried to override my thoughts from going there.  Breathe. Stay in the present moment. Everything is going to be okay I kept reminding myself.

The ER team worked to cut off Ryder’s swim trunks, wrap him in warm blankets and stabilize his lungs.

Ryder couldn’t stop coughing blood. He had experienced pulmonary edema, he had breathed in pool water as he sunk to the bottom of the 12 feet pool. His lungs were filled with blood.

I sat by his side. Well as close as they would let me be to him and be out of the way of his amazing ER team of Doctors and Nurses. I mostly stood, I couldn’t sit. My prayers were continuous over my son and over his doctors. Ryder was conscious. They had even cheered him up by turning on the TV.  I’d never been so happy to hear the voices of the Nickelodeon show  “Go Diego go” on because that felt like something kid like and normal.  Not to mention I heard Ryder’s laugh. Hearing his laugh made me feel relieved that he was in pain but could still laugh.  As time in the ER went on, my boyfriend brought me dry clothes as a hospital worker reminded me to eat something. Of course I couldn’t eat anything. I needed to know my son was going to be alright.

Somewhere near midnight the good news came

Good news, one of the Doctor’s told me, “Your son’s lungs have stabilized” we can get him into xray and check injuries to his neck and back.”

With deep breaths and shaky legs for the second time that day I followed Ryder in a stretcher.  The nurse wheeled him into xray. When the Doctor wheeled him out, “Your son is fine! Nothing is broken” the wave of thankfulness that took over me can not be expressed. Another hurtle cleared.

By 2 a.m. Ryder was settled into a room for the night to recover at Children’s Hospital. When his Dad had heard the news of the accident he had jumped in his car in Eugene, Oregon and just kept driving the 8 hour drive south to where we were.

As Ryder drifted to sleep from pure exhaustion, I too collapsed into the chair/bed next to his hospital bed. Knowing I was beyond exhausted and needed rest I tried forcing myself to get some rest.  I soon found out that sleeping became worse than the event itself.  Every-time my eyes closed the images of what Ryder went through,… being unconscious at the bottom of the 12 feet deep pool,… what would have happened if he hadn’t come conscious on the pool deck,… if he hadn’t still had a pulse when the lifeguard pulled him out,… Ugh ! My imagination and fear kept getting the best of me. I would awaken myself back up and just stare at Ryder . “He’s okay, relax” “He’s alive” “He’s Here”  I would say some prayerful tearful thanks and force myself to  close my eyes and find sleep again.

It wasn’t until a couple hours later when Ryder’s Dad walked in the room at 6.30 a.m. that I finally surrendered to my emotions and got some relief.  I left Ryder’s side for the first time since the accident. I wondered blurry eyed to the hospital cafeteria.  Not hungry for anything but knowing my body had nothing left and needed something.

I sat there staring out the window in the cafeteria.  A coffee in hand. It was then that all the events of the last 12 hours caught up with me.  I finally collapsed in tears. It was such a stressful and scary ordeal to go through and yet my body had saved it all up for later. This now was the “later” moments to feel it all.

The veil between life and death is so very very thin.

As I retell the story above, I admit this event still shakes me to this day. As a parent, I admit how hard it is while raising kids, especially on long or overwhelming days, to stay in thankfulness for your children’s lives.  But please trust me when I say this, “Don’t take any moment of your child’s life, their consciousness and certainly their breath for granted.

I share this story to remind you to be safe in the pool particularly this holiday weekend but of course at all times as well.  I also share this story to remind myself and my family how forever thankful we are and will be that our Ryder came back to us that day.

Live your life as if every moment is a miracle, because it is. 

Yours in the Healing journey,

Meredith

mkm

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How I Manifested my Dream House

It’s move in day and you could JUST pinch me !!!

In my line of work as a life coach I live and breath intention, vision boards and manifesting…however, manifesting this Dream HOUSE, for ME and my children, in the ease and timeliness that it was found and came to me still has me over the moon excited and just blown away in a miracle of JOY.  Read on below to find out more.

 

It was June, I received a notice that made me think.

Less than 90 days ago…. I received a letter from my daughter’s school for residency.  It had been less than a year since I had left my previous live-in boyfriend. (That conscious uncoupling break up is a story for sharing on another day!)  The need to prove where I lived brought up the question in me, is this the right place? Is this where my kids and I need to be right now? Maybe it was time to consider change? Perhaps I needed a new plan. But, what was that plan??  I wasn’t sure.

I folded up the school letter, tucked it into my “to work on” file and jumped on a plane to LA. I’d had a business trip planned for months and I wanted to focus on my re-entry to working full time as a coach again. I didn’t want to be distracted off course thinking about a move.   Ahh, I don’t have to worry about this now I thought, as I headed to LA.  Of course the question kept looping in my head prodding at my attempt to travel in peace. In response I thought, no no, I can do this, I can stay in California another year, my current situation isn’t ideal,.. but enough of it is “okay”.  After all I need to just keep doing what I’d been doing, focusing 100% on regaining my optimal health. Please, I can’t think about a move right now.  I am comfortable…Ugh. I said that word. Comfortable. eek. That’s not my word. That thought left me unsettled but I still tuned out the need to think about a move just yet.

When your friends become examples…

Fast forward 6 weeks later.  I received another nudge. My dear and close friend, Erin,  who just so happened left Oregon the same year I left Oregon was leaving the Bay Area.  Her and her husband and their 3 girls had packed up and left for Idaho.  We met for a farewell walk on the beach and a nice goodbye dinner. In our lengthy conversation we agreed how hard it is as Mom’s, athletes and trainers to really make a living and afford a house in the increasingly expensive and overpopulated Bay Area.

It made me think again of the statistic of how only 10% of people KNOW what they really want….well Erin and I sure have known for a long while what we wanted. Fitness, happy family life and successful businesses.

Well I came home from that goodbye beach walk and dinner and thought about it.  It’d been a while since I thought about the Big Picture.  So much had changed in my life since fighting a brain tumor the last 2 years.  I’d been so focused on getting a clean MRI reading, living less migraine days and keeping on top of medical bills…. “Mere” Erin’s voice echoed,  “you gotta think about more then just paying the medical bills”. Oh yah, I thought, there is more to life then this !!  Oh yah,… who was I before I got sick??  What was I dreaming about? I had gone back to survival mode, otherwise known as settling or playing small.  *Note to self, time to start the dream intentions again.  Then dream bigger. Stop with the small stuff or the settling. Obviously I’d gotten off course a bit.

Life Coaching Exercise for Manifesting

The next morning in my meditative, writing time, I turned to a life coaching exercise.

  1.  I took out a sheet of blank copy paper.
  2.  On the top I wrote: “If I had a million dollars… I would ________________”.
  3.  I closed my eyes and thought.

The Answer I got:

Move to Eugene and buy my Ex-Father in Law’s House

Oh!….

With this exercise you utilize the notion that  you act {AS IF}.  As soon as you act {AS IF} your true hearts dreams and desires can get through.   Without blocks, limits, or excuses  in the way your clarity can come.

What blocks, limits or excuses you ask?  Come on, you know them; the resistance loops of “I don’t have the time”

“I don’t have the money”

“I don’t have the energy”

“I don’t have the time, money or the energy”…

Delete those.  Step into and focus on living in the possibility of what it could be for you.

 

Back to the Answer I got:  Move to Eugene and buy my Ex-Father in Law’s House

 

I got my answer, now what..

Well it was July and it just so happened that for a year and a half I had heard through my Ex that his Father was about to sell his house. Why did this matter?

For years I had loved this house. In my married days I’d spent many holidays and bbq’s there.  I looked at pictures of this house that called to me and lit up my heart’s desires.  I made a list of what spoke to me about this house and why I loved it.

Here is the list:

  • I loved the windows
  • I loved the wood work
  • I loved the huge kitchen with a gas stove
  • I loved the decks to enjoy the outside (there were 3)
  • I loved the gorgeous well kept landscaped garden
  • I loved the various trees that surrounded the property
  • it was in Eugene, close to my EX so my kids could see their Dad more
  • it was in Eugene, which meant I could get a much needed break from the go go go of city life

With manifesting, you recognize your heart’s desire and you repeatedly say “I desire THIS… or something better” and so I did this.   I completed this exercise and did the mantra. I spent time meditating on my heart’s desire and why (both in the morning 5-10 minutes and in the evenings 5-10 minutes before I went to bed). I pictured the house.  I saw myself in the house. I saw my kids in the house. I envisioned the friends, clients and gatherings I’d have in the house. I set my intention of a place that would be a sacred quiet sanctuary to recharge myself and raise my kids.

I focused on this house for a couple of weeks.  Talked to my ex about buying it.  Worked out what it would look like in my personal life and my business life, with my kids and my schedule to actually uproot from California and trek back up to Oregon, re-root and make Eugene, home base again. I saw the plan unfolding and the steps it would take to make it all happen.

Then an amazing thing happened.  The door Closed.

I didn’t get my Father-in-law’s house. The one on my vision board. The house went on the market and it went to someone else.  HUMPH!  Now what?  I didn’t miss a beat. Seriously! Not even a moment.

Apparently, I was completely in alignment with the idea of “this or something better”.  Hmm, this door has closed. I stayed in high energy, I stayed in curiosity. I didn’t abandon my hopes and dreams for this gorgeous sanctuary house. I had touched into what I desired and I wasn’t shaken by the change of events.

“Ok, Universe,” I said,  “what do you have in mind for me and my children now?”  Being on board with Gabby Bernstein and her well versed book and mantra “the universe has my back” I didn’t lose hope for even a moment.

I jumped right into,  “Ok, what else could it be? what else could it be? what else could it be?”

By the next morning after hearing the news of losing out on the house, I started in on plan B, for me it was a start of looking for rentals.  A couple days of this went by.  I made a little list: South Eugene, a place with hard wood floors, a big kitchen to cook in.  I sent out a couple emails even did a “wanted” posting.  Waiting and staying in action in full 100% anticipation that the right house was out there for me and my children.  I kept thinking in curiosity of what was “better” than the house on my vision board.

On about the 4th day, I set out to look and I took time to meditate before I went on the computer.  Up until that day I’d been jumping online as soon as I woke up looking for what had posted since the night before.  Reminder, *Note to self keep that first 30 minutes every day clear for meditative thought or writing … the phone, the computer full of messages, facebook updates or instagrams can wait. ! Life is a lot easier if you lead it and not just start your day in a reactive state.

“look for 2 bedrooms“…. I heard. 

Boom, I jumped on my computer and reduced my search criteria to 2 bedrooms (I have 2 kids, a boy and a girl, of course I’d been looking for 3 bedrooms, why would I look for 2?).  The first thing that popped up was this gorgeous dream house.  I circled through the pictures. My heart racing that sweet pleasure pulse of excitement. This is it!!  I felt.  Exactly what I wanted. I didn’t even have to look at my previous list. I knew it had everything I had loved about my Ex-Father in law’s house and more…

  • lots of windows
  • gorgeous wood work
  • a huge kitchen with a gas stove
  • decks to enjoy the outside (there were 3)
  • gorgeous well kept landscaped gardens
  • trees surrounding the property
  • located in Eugene, close to my EX so my kids could see their Dad more
  • located in Eugene, which means I could get a break from city life

Even better than, and more fitting to what I had originally had had my heart set on.  Wow.  This manifestation of my heart’s desire had truly taken REAL LIFE FORM.  What an awesome miracle and blessing.  This house even had extra’s.  A view of the sunset. It was tucked away on a quiet cul-de-sac.  It was in South Eugene, close to the running trails.  The house also has a meditative rose garden with a fountain. In addition to a fountain in the front yard that I could look at and hear while in the kitchen. Oh, I could go on and on. What a complete dream.   Thank you! Thank you! Thank you Universe I have said over and over.

So please, I share this miracle story with you to encourage you that you too can manifest your heart’s desire.

Move past the excuses of not having the time… the money… the energy or all three!!  And just sit with what you really desire, {AS IF} you already had complete access to what it took to get it.

Trust me I share this to remind you that I know how hard it is to Dream Big, when you’ve gone thru a trauma, disappointment, heartbreak, illness, etc of any kind. It’s hard to dream big when you have defaulted to survivor mode.  If you are there, please don’t hesitate to schedule a call with me.  There is something about really accessing what you really want, beyond your limited thinking, beyond where you can’t see past yourself to that bigger picture. That bigger picture that is waiting for you.

If you told me 90 days ago that I’d be moving into this gorgeous dream house on Sept 1, I would have FREAKED OUT!!  No way I would have told you!  How could that happen? But it DID !

Thank you for reading! Here’s to not forgetting your power !

In all love and gratitude.

Meredith K. Mills

Please message me at meredith.mills.lifecoach@gmail.com to share your dreams and manifesting miracles with me.  To your great success and happiness.

 

 

 

 

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.

How do you tell your child that you have a brain tumor? and not let your own FEAR scare them to death?

I just had a conversation on the way to school this morning with my 10 year old son, Ryder, about Brain Tumor Awareness Week. Yes! It’s this week!
I asked him what he remembered about that day, the day I told him that his Mom had a brain tumor…(he was 8 yo at the time).
“I was surprised, Mom, I wasn’t scared… I was just surprised”…
Ahh…I breathed a deep sigh of relief and thought …“Well done Mama”….
In those first few days of being diagnosed, I confess that I was as emotionally stable “as a piece of furniture from Ikea”…. however, I didn’t want my kids to experience that with me !!! I myself was uncomfortable and having a hard time processing all these emotions.
I wanted them to experience me as they always had; strong, stable, steady, solid. (Of course also happy, healthy, vibrant, playful & fun but those were temporarily on the back burner.)
As their loving Mama, I had always made a point of telling them that I could be counted on no matter what, that I had their backs, and that I would always love them unconditionally, no matter what. Those values were now in question.
There I was swimming in the whirlwind of emotion. Emotion that I needed to experience to figure out my treatment plan and accept, come to terms with and allow what was happening for me. I was feeling it all:
– fear
– grief
– anger
– sadness
– frustration
– pain
I knew I was feeling all these feelings that were triggered by having to face and “deal with” being diagnosed with a life threatening illness or disease. However, I knew I needed a strategy of how to deal with my own personal journey but also be strong for my kids. I wanted to be that good teacher to them, I wanted to weave the vulnerability of honesty and truth, but also faith and strength into the tapestry of our family experience. These small ones in my life were, and always are, like sponges, they absorb everything. I didn’t want them to take on too much nor too little.
On my own, I diligently faced my own perceived loss of health, loss of control, loss of confidence, loss of life as I knew it. I faced being frozen in my tracks. But with them I showed up with borrowed faith, for their benefit and then in turn my benefit as well.
What I remember about that day is I sat down with my kids to intentionally share with them to the level in which they “needed to know”, at the level that would inform them but not overwhelm them. Face to face.  Looking them both into their eyes. I led with “Mom is going to be okay…..Mom is healthy and strong….but…right now I have to see a lot of Doctor’s and get a lot of treatment…I am going to need a lot of rest. No matter what, I love you and I am going to face this thing head on. You have my promise! Nothing is more important in my life than being there for you! It might take a few weeks…it might take a few years before I am back to 100% but know that I will be here for you!!!”
So with Ryder’s words this morning,
“I was surprised, Mom, I wasn’t scared… I was just surprised”…
I am thankful and full of gratitude that all my intentions were honored. Ryder was, and to this day, informed but not overwhelmed. Aware of what I am going thru, along side me in my journey but not scared.
So in my book, choosing to live in Love over FEAR will always be the right answer. I gotta be here for these Kids!! For me! For my life-purpose…after all I more than know that I am just getting started, just getting my feet wet, on this life of service, life purpose path.
In health, In healing and more importantly in great Love,
Meredith
mkm