For wordy-and-therefore-unlisted reasons, blogging is important to me. For business and other reasons, so is my Facebook presence.
But I've been rather quiet around the interwebs, haven't I?
"What's up with all the crickets?" you might ask, if referring to silence as "crickets" is what you do.
I'm noticing that I tend to go radio-silent on the internets for one of too reasons. Either:
A) I simply *can't* blog because I am overwhelmed by our busy lifestyle and things that are important to me are being dropped while I'm desperately trying to "JUGGLE ALL THE BALLS!!", or
B) I *choose* not to blog because I am enjoying our busy lifestyle, we are in the *flow,* and I'm letting balls fall so that I can focus on other balls that are even more important to me.
The difference between "dropping" and "letting go" is gargantuan, is it not?
I'll answer that for you: It IS. I say so as one who is a master of the former and a student of the latter.
I'm happy to report that the most recent Silence de Radio up in here has been due to Reason Number 'B.' I feel I owe you this explanation after writing "Got to Get Down to Get up" a few weeks ago, in case you're worried that I'm still flailing for air in the deep-end.
All is great here. I have fully breeched. We have made big, overdue, wonderful and necessary changes around here. And the changes are good.
After returning from a long weekend in Topanga Canyon with my Love (see photo, above), I wanted to check in here to send some love to you (yes I mean YOU, lovely reader and spreader of light who shows up to read these words!), but I don't have much prepared as far as thoughts go today.
But wait: I do!
A few weeks ago, Ursula Wayne of The Poppy Preppy Revolution interviewed me for her own blog. I love Ursula's questions and can't help but wonder whether some of my other readers may be wondering the same things.
So I'm sharing my answer to her first question here and am also listing her other questions. If you want to read more of my responses, click through to her blog!
I hope your Day of Labor was not laborious at all. Sending you light and love and appreciation, as always.
Here's my answer to her first question...
1. Tell me a little bit about your background. Where did you grow up? What did you study? How did you find yourself?
I'll skim though the boring-ish details (Rhode Island-raised, Boston College, Communications major became pharmaceutical sales rep, yadda, yadda) to get to the meat and potatoes of your question.
Here's what I see as a relevant part of my background: For as long as I can remember, I have been "overachieving" on the outside while struggling to find happiness on the inside. That sounds deep for a half of a second until you realize it's the M.O. of every single over-achiever in the history of ever.
How did I find my calling? Great question. Through listening to my body when I was doing the things that weren't true to me, I suppose.
In pharmaceutical sales, it felt like a piece of my soul was dying. Incredible job perks and respect from people who applauded my "accomplishments" were the golden handcuffs that kept me there.
But the longer I ignored my gut, the more I had physical symptoms: I kept peanut butter in my car because on most days, that was all my stomach could tolerate. And I felt dirty. Not because the job itself was inherently "dirty" (one of my very favorite people in the darn world is a pharma rep) but because it was not the job that allowed MY soul to thrive.
I left pharmaceuticals to start a document management business, which was one of the scariest and bravest things I've ever done and seemed like the right direction until I realized I was always hoping people wouldn't ask me about it.
I'm no career advisor, but that might be a good sign you're in the wrong career, right?
At the time I came to that realization, my son was an infant and I had always "known" that being a stay-at-home mom (SAHM) was my "primary life goal" and that it would be "all I would need" to feel fulfilled. We were in a position where we could make it work, so I went that direction.
I must interrupt this story to say that it's HARD to change directions, Ursula. It is one one of the scariest of all Scary-Assed Routes. And it's embarrassing: will people take me seriously anymore? Will
take me seriously?
But if we ignore our intuition or try to pretend that something is right for us when in fact it is only right for someone else, the physical consequences get worse. It's dangerous to our health, to our relationships and to our only chance at living our life's PURPOSE, ignoring our intuition is.
Recently, I got whacked upside the head with intuition again. My "Joyology" and Photography work began as a side-project…a small business that could serve as an outlet for me as a SAHM. As the business responsibilities have grown, I have not been honest with myself about how hard--no, impossible--it is to run a business AND stay at home with the kids.
I especially haven't been honest with myself about WANTING to work outside the home, because I was petrified that would mean bad things about me as a mom, which is another post for another day.
But by trying to do both, I have been doing neither the way I want to do them. And so began my downward spiral into a recent month-long depression.
Like I said, intuition will do what it must in order to be heard. For brevity's sake, I'll skip through the details of that spiral, but I will say that
. It forces you to reevaluate. It forces you to be honest with yourself.
So now I'm in the process of creating the structure so that I can work during the day and be present for my family in the evenings. I am shifting again, and for the first time, I am making the shift ENTIRELY on what my intuition is telling me is right for me and my family, not based on what I think society or the people around me would say I "should" be doing.
It feels so, SO good.
I guess you could say that I've been able to find my "calling" because I've found myself. I have been working with a therapist (for 16 years loosely, 4 years intensely) and I know now that you won't get anywhere in therapy unless you will talk about the things you don't want to talk about. To find yourself, you need self-love. To find self-love, you must first find self-acceptance. To find self-acceptance, you must be willing to shine light on the things that you wish were not a part of yourself.
I guess you could say that I found myself through being willing to honestly assess and make changes. And that I continue to find myself! :)
Here are Ursula's other Questions.
If you're interested, click through to the Poppy Preppy Revolution to read more from this interview!
2. Your photos and your approach to photography is so soulful. Did you always know you wanted to be a photographer?
3. How did you find your niche?
4. Who has influenced you on your road thus far?
5. Your pictures are so happy. What makes you happy? How elicit such genuinely happy smiles from your clients?
6. Who do you consider to be your peers? What blogs/sites do you read on a regular basis?
7. Your honesty is so refreshing. Have you always been so straightforward?
8. What makes you laugh?
9. What does the online inspirational community need more of?
10. What's the best advice you could give for someone just starting out to find their "peeps"? (Not the candy.)