I would say that all my life I have been searching for who I really am. I started off as a tomboy playing in the mud and climbing trees, but would often get caught going into mami's makeup and nail-polish. I was this little girl with spunk and edge and a unique sense of style and expression. I loved to perform, singing and dancing were a huge part of my childhood. And growing up in the military I got to try new things and create new experiences wherever we went. Playing hopscotch with my friends in the Philippines, sledding and ice skating through the winters in North Dakota, and turning light brown playing baseball outside each summer in Spain. And eventually baseball turned into softball when we made our final move to Dover, Delaware.
The next 5 years of my life were great! I made lots of friends and dedicated my life to sports, volleyball, basketball, and softball became my life. I was a fairly good student so my routine became a busy cycle of school, practice, homework, sleep. School practice, homework, game. School practice homework... you get the picture. Thank GOD for weekends and summers where I could take a break from the constant hamster wheel of what was my life. But soon weekends and summers too would be consumed with softball playing for 3 different teams. My love for the sport was starting to dwindle, as did my passion to play. I was burnt out. Softball was no longer a game to me, it became a job. And as much as I would have loved to play in college, I couldn't lie to myself any longer, I couldn't take one more step on that hamster wheel. My parents respected my wishes and the next 5 years I spent exploring who I wanted to be in the city of brotherly love.
As soon as I got to Drexel I knew I wanted to explore that side of me that had been dormant for so long, I wanted to sing and dance again as I did as a kid. Of course I was there to major in International Area Studies, which fed my craving for language, culture, and international relations, but I was also there to remember who I was. I soon joined the Drexel University Gospel Choir, Onda Latina Dance Troupe, my sorority's step team, and a plethora of other student organizations on campus. I LOVED each of these experiences, and college was the ride of my life, but I found myself back on that hamster wheel again, trying to keep up, but getting nowhere. My ride expired June 2014 and now it was time to try to get it right in the real world.
I started working for Altria October 2004 as a Territory Sales Manager. Being a saleswoman was great, the money was good, and not to mention the benefits, but here I was again back on that damn wheel! My first year on the job I worked 12 hour days, weekends, holidays, I was exhausted and miserable. I didn't know how long I could keep this up. I still didn't know who I was or what I wanted to do with myself, but I knew this wasn't it and I knew I had to do something. Within my first 5 years on the job I moved three times, got pregnant, engaged, broken up, and found myself back in good o'l Dover. Eventually, the hamster wheel came off of the hinges and, broke off completely and I found myself in a deep dark hole of depression.
How did I get here? Why was I so miserable? My mind, body, and spirit all gave up simultaneously. But my depression was a blessing in disguise because it gave me no choice but to look within. I had already explored countless opportunities and careers but the answers were never out there to begin with, they were always inside, but I was always too busy to listen. I was always running on that damn wheel trying to figure it out.
Eventually I began practicing yoga, meditation, and reiki as a way to feed my starving soul. And the more I practiced the stronger I became and realized that in order to live my most authentic life, I would have to give up the security of that corporate job and push past the many fears that came along with that decision. I had no idea how I was going to make it work, but I just put one foot in front of the other, followed my intuition, and signed up for Yoga Teacher training.
"When you want something all the universe conspires in helping you achieve it." -Paulo Cohelo. Within a few months of the completion of my 200 hour yoga teacher training, Anoma and I started our business to do our part in healing the local community through yoga and reiki to promote balance in mind, body, and spirit. I felt inspired, alive, and energized to finally be able to do something that was authentic and real! I knew that this was where I was meant to be, but was still unclear on how.
However, the universe was on my side aligning things in such a way that made it possible for me to take the leap. I left my job in March 2016 after 11 years, it was scary, but it was so right! Today I am self employed and I love every second of it! My life is far from perfect, but I can honestly say that it is more authentic and real than it has ever been, and I vow to myself to never get on another hamster wheel ever again. I don't know everything or have all of the answers, but I trust that the answers come when we are ready, we just have to create space and listen.
So now the question is, what do YOU really want? What are you going to do with this one beautiful life you have? It's time to get off the wheel and it's time to start living your truth.