was hopeless, in the worst sense of the word. I shared no positivism
with the world. I had just received my BA from a top-50 US university.
I had traveled the world, 9 countries to be exact, in my few
years as a college student. I worked abroad in my major, advising
Scottish parliamentarians' in their own policy-making. Made
and had many friends, and a family that was enthusiastically
proud of me for my accomplishments, not just in college, but
in all things I had done.
had nothing to be proud of, nothing that set me apart. I saw
only my failures, which trumped my successes in every scenario.
Every meaningful thing was meaningless, every proud moment was
pride-less, and every loving moment was void of love. This is
how my life was to be lived. A struggle against myself, against
God and against especially my body, which I had constantly fought
since I was a very young girl.
knew I needed to talk to someone when I saw no meaning in my
college graduation. I was in total fear of life outside of my
school safety net. I ended up moving to Indiana post-graduation
to work on a congressional campaign. Emotionally abused by my
boss, in way over my head, and with no idea how to do my job,
I was thankfully fired. I came back home to live with my parents
in Valley Center after 3 months in Indiana, nowhere to go, no
where to turn. Hopeless to my expected career and profession,
constantly questioning of what possibly could have gone wrong
and why I never fit into what I planned for myself.
decided to get help, there had to be happiness in life, there
just HAD to be! I had faith in that, but that was about all.
Then I decided to meet with Rhoda Reilly, LCSW, Heart-Centered
Therapy and her therapy dog, Ziggy. Rhoda was marveled by all
my accomplishments, something that was very familiar to me.
I was used to people being surprised by all that I had done
at such a young age. She told me that she could see that I was
very ready to change my life and that she could help. I didn't
believe her. I continued in my disbelief for a while longer,
but as she predicted, I eventually began to
envelop myself into the process of self-love.
has been 9 mos. since I began to work on myself. I see Rhoda
weekly; along with her therapy dog Ziggy, who always knows what
I need. Ziggy has also had quite the little life himself, and
is a consistent reminder to me of unconditional love and affection,
something of which I have learned to have for myself. My life
now is filled with meaning, love, pride, and respect for all
of the wonderful things of my past, present, and future. What
a beautiful thing it is, that I've learned how to live in the
present, see things and people as beings of love, not hate and
continue to work on serenity and peace in my job situation,
being able to see that becoming a multi-millionaire didn't necessarily
mean that I was happy (a girl can dream, right?). I left a career-driving
job far from my home to work a service job with co-workers who
couldn't be any closer than family to me. I am now looking for
a new position working with animals, something that I always
saw as a last resort. As I did my work with Rhoda, I realized
that most of the things in my life that made me the happiest
had been pushed behind "obligation" to work in my
field and had become "last resorts." I see happy possibilities
for my future, whether they are in my current field, or in another
way. Service, whether it is to animals, or humans, is my calling.
What a liberating feeling to be able to leave your career up
to the universe!
December of last year, I decided that I would run a half-marathon.
This is a big step for the girl who couldn't sleep the night
before she had to run the mile for P.E class in high school.
I also decided that this could be the personal 'coming-out'
for my new life. Proving to myself that this process of positivism
and conscious reprogramming actually works. The race was set
for June 5th, 2011, I was running the San Diego Rock and Roll
Half-Marathon. I remember early January, I stood naked in front
of my bathroom mirror, and told myself, that no matter how far
I got, how hard I trained, how many injuries I acquired, or
how many runs I passed on, that I would be unconditionally proud
of my decision and willingness to begin.
so I began. 19 hours until the race, and I stumbled upon this
quote by John J. Bigham: "The miracle is not that I finished.
The miracle is that I had the courage to start." How overwhelming
it was to read that quote! I am that miracle! Six months of
training and a total ran distance of over 150 miles, and I was
ready for the big day...
days ago I finished the half marathon. I ran an energizing 13.1
miles in 3 hours, 23 minutes, and 33 seconds without stopping!
This is what I had to say in my runners-journal the night before
the race, I think this sums up my journey thus far quite nicely:
is amazing, the human body. It truly is. It's amazing that it
listens to what we say, and follows so diligently. If you tell
it no, no will be the answer. If you tell it yes, WOW the possibility.
I am certain of this fact because I am its product. I am the
product of self-love. I have a sore hip, but I am very ready.
I have never felt so powerful, capable and needed in my whole
life. I am the product of self-love. I am excited & nervous,
all wrapped into one, but I feel so powerful.
to saying yes to myself and to my body for responding in the
only way it knows to: following the leader. I am so grateful
for my body. All its parts. To every last bone and muscle, all
of which will be working their hardest to move me my longest
ever distance, 13.1 miles. Man, am I ready for this!!
a beautiful, surrendering and humble life that was given to
me by God. Praise be to him for creation. Praise be to power,
love, accomplishment & winning. May it forever continue
on my race of life.
you at the finish line, you beautiful being!
am just beginning, but have made enormous strides in the past
year. This is due to Rhoda's guidance and amazing personal stories
of beating odds herself with depression and emptiness in her
own life. Rhoda and Ziggy are invaluable co-pilots on this journey
that I've decided to embark upon. Who knows where in the world
I'll end up next...
Valley Center, CA