The And of Fear and Faith

The pump you up memes say, “Be fearless!”

The personal growth gurus say, “Feel the fear and do it anyway!”

Some religions say, “There is no fear with faith.”

Therapists say, “Identify the fear, feel it, talk about it, cope with it, and allow it to move through.” (We therapists can be wordy.)

My new coach Cassandra is teaching me, “Feel the fear, do not attach to the drama of it, and choose faith.”

Crap! So which is it?

Click here to continue reading over at The Huffington Post.

 
walking-into-the-muck-of-the-complicated-gray-of-our-fear-and-our-faith-will-awaken-us-to-the-find-fight-for-create-and-receive-our-happiest-life-and-biggest-dreams-5.png
 

FREE 7 Week Rising Ever Upward Mini-Course

Last week I kicked off my FREE 7 week Rising Ever Upward Mini-Course on Facebook and at my Ever Upward subscriber list. I will be sharing unique and exclusive material at both platforms as I lead up to leaving on tour in July. Make sure to follow at both platforms so you don't miss anything, and of course, a share goes further than you think. Thank you in advance!

The Rising Strong™ work has changed everything for me and I am so excited to be able to offer my workshops and intensives in a city near you this summer! I'd love to see you on tour!

For now and this one time only, I thought I would share Week 1 from the email list here for you to get an idea of this incredible work for yourself. Make sure to also follow along on Facebook for a weekly challenge, live video and graphic!

 
 

The Rising Ever Upward Tour

 
when-we-ownthe-story-we-canwe-can-write-a-brave-new-ending.png
 

If you seek a life lived more authentically... 

If shame keeps you from living and loving fully...

If you want to build shame resilience and courage practices...

If you want to learn how to live more bravely in the arenas of your life...

 If you simply want to learn how to live, love, parent and lead more wholeheartedly and with deep courage...

The Daring Way™ and Rising Strong™ work is for you.

Join me on tour this summer,

full details at www.daringinstl.com.

And the Soul Felt It's Worth

The lights cast a glow throughout the house that is both calming and unnerving. The scent of pine brings both joy and sadness.

The stubborn ache in my chest like a constant reminder of what could of been and the gift of what is.

December is kicking my ass this year.

I am tearful easily. I am overwhelmed with it all. And, I know I am not alone.

Most people, even my closest loved ones, have asked, "But, why are you struggling so much?"

Side note: This is not the most empathetic way to ask...

Then there are my fellow warriors and even my always trying husband Chad, who have asked with empathy and love, "Is this different or harder than last year? How come you think you're struggling so much?"

 
to-feel-the-ache-and-the-awe-the-longing-and-the-joy-my-worth-his-love-and-my-three.jpg
 

I am as surprised (and annoyed honestly) as anyone else, as I would like to say this gets easier.

Every year that passes there is this naive part of you that thinks it won't hurt as bad, maybe just maybe, it will get better. But as I always say, it just gets different.

There are a myriad of reasons this Christmas season is kicking my butt. Bottom line infertility and loss changes you forever. If we choose to do the work it changes us for the better, I promise. No amount of twinkling lights, carols, jingle bells and damn glitter (literally, damn glitter, it should not be on cards in my opinion) lessens the longing in my soul that I wish my three were here with me on earth. In fact those lights, carols, bells and glitter only remind me of everything I do not get with my own children. They remind me of what I am missing out on and of what is missing of me.

Admittedly, all that missing out and grief stirs up the voice in my head and the ache in my heart that tells me I am not enough, that I will never be enough, especially because I am not a mother.

Yet, I have done the work, I know this is not my truth.

And still, shame weasels in so easily and steals my light.

I have changed that story...most days. Through the work I have done and especially in my faith I know my truth is that I am worthy, I am enough and I am a mother.

This December it seems, my shitty first draft of I am not enough is winning more days than not.

Perhaps you saw me Sunday on the live stream of my church service desperately taking notes and attempting to control my tears. As soon as we sang O Holy Night with the lyric, and the soul felt its worth, a peace settled into my soul right next to my forever longing.

Be still, my child. It is Me and it is about Me. I am here with you always.

My worth is not in children by my side, in being called mom or being seen as someone who matters by society. My worth is in Him and what better time of year than now to remember that.

And, as my amazing friend and fellow blogger Caitlin says,

In the end my identity doesn't come from hearing a child call me mom but knowing the King who calls me daughter.

Deep complicated gray breath.

I still have not fully decorated that lit tree or put up any other Christmas decorations, and I am giving myself permission that this is okay this year.

This hurts, and it always will. I am sad, and that is okay. I may feel invisible, and I am worthy.

These are my truths.

So, I look through the glow of the unadorned lit tree filling my lungs with the scent of pine in a deep knowing breath to feel the ache and the awe, the longing and the joy, my worth, His love and my three.

A Community of Never Enough Mothers?

A woman with two devastating losses currently pregnant with a miracle. A woman in the midst of her very last round of infertility treatments after five losses.

A woman with two losses she has never felt good enough to claim.

A woman told at 16 years old she would never conceive.

Women who are all mothers, not in your traditional sense of the word of 2.5 children in the family picture, but mothers still.

I am one of these mothers; failed infertility treatments, three lost babies and learning to live life parenting from afar. I am a Licensed Professional Counselor who has been certified in the work of Dr. Brené Brown for almost three years now. I have completed The Daring Way™ curriculum with over 50 clients helping them to rise over shame and learn to live and love wholeheartedly.

A couple of weekends ago I led the four above mentioned women through Brené’s new Rising Strong™ curriculum. It was my first infertility and loss intensive, and it was four years in the making.

Click here to continue reading over at HuffPost.

 
we-are-mothers-more-than-enough-mothers.jpg
 

The Wholehearted Hustle

I'm trying to finish getting ready. I know I am not late and yet there is an overwhelming sense that I am. I am rushing all around at lightening speed and no one is around to help.

I run down the hallway my heart beating at top speed as fly down the stairs. I push open the door so hard it bangs on the outside wall that the sound nearly brings me back to reality.

I feel the crisp air on my face and piercing my lungs as I try to catch my breath when the sound of the closing door stops me in my tracks realizing there is no one there and nowhere to go.

They left.

I am alone.

For months it seemed like this was the theme of my nightly dreams, different settings but always the same scenario and feelings; fear, sadness and confusion.

They left me. I am forgotten. They've moved on.

And, they didn't even look back.

I am invisible.

I've done enough work to know where these dreams are coming from. There is not any unconscious or subconscious bullshit that I am not aware of because I've done the work and live it every damn day.

As a woman without children and an infertility advocate without the "happy" ending not only do I hardly ever fit in but I am also often ignored and forgotten.

So why were these dreams beginning to plague me now?

It wasn't until I went to my Rising Strong™ facilitator intensive that I was able to see and therefore understand and even change this theme in my life.

In the Rising Strong™ work we identify a face down in the arena moment, a moment in our lives here we have fallen or failed or perhaps completely lost ourselves. It was only in picking myself back up and rewriting my story that I realized what was happening.

I'd been hustling for so long to build the platform of Ever Upward; working my ass of on posting, emailing, writing and submitting, all in hopes of my healthier messages reaching a bigger audience. Along the way in Montana I realized, with a lot of help and love from my tribe, that my mission had actually stolen my voice. What I learned further in my Rising Strong™ work is the reason for this; the inner critic of fear and shame.

I am feeling invisible.

Often feeling like the invisible advocate only seemed to strengthen my hustle but not in a healthy way. Rather, it was a hustle from scarcity as if trying to convince myself that I am enough. Finally, with the Rising Strong™ work I realized that this shameful and fearful part of me felt that if I didn't get Ever Upward noticed and keep hustling, that not only would I be unseen and invisible but my fear of disappearing would come true.

And yet, I know I matter. I will never disappear, even if I am unseen.

Because I am worthy.

The dreams have since stopped. In this work I have been able to again let go a bit more and walk even more into my own grace as my friend Susan says.

And yet, I know I am still a person of hard work and hustle.

I am determined.

But, for my well being and to honor the work I have done, and my truth, I must hustle from a place of wholeheartedness and not scarcity.

This clarity came right at the same time as a book was delivered on my doorstep (God knows when you are ready to receive).

I had preordered Hustle Believe Receive months ago and had honestly kind of forgotten about it.

And just like that my hustle became fun again and not desperate.

 
the-wholehearted-1.jpg
 

I highly Sarah Centralla's book. I love her 8 steps to getting what you want in life because she makes them tangible and doable for everyone. It is also highly aligned with my values and the work of Ever Upward; we choose our lives and define our own happy ending. I especially love that she shares her story along with 51 other stories of people who believed they could, worked their asses off to create the lives they desire and allowed themselves the belief and love of themselves to receive it.

I am rising Ever Upward.

I just finished Sarah's Step5: #SeeIt and can feel the strength of my dreams empowering my hustle instead of it being powered by the fear of being left behind.

Because I believe in hard work. I believe in my voice, my truth and my dreams.

I believe in rising ever upward in the wholehearted hustle.

***Includes Amazon Affiliate links.