It was 2005. And, I made it to my finish line…college graduation. But, it was an incredibly stressful season, not just because of graduation preparations, but because life happened in the midst of checking off goals. And, there was no time to slow down & pause. I had to keep moving.
I discovered that my roommate & best friend, at that time, had been hiding the mail, stole my credit cards & opened credit accounts in my name, skipped out on her portion of the rent, & pocketed the money for utilities, just to name a few of her treacherous activities.
It was a mess.
While work was rewarding, it was also incredibly stressful; and, there was soooooo much happening at the Residential Youth Treatment Facility & Group Home that season!
To cope with the immense stress, I was partying hard & being reckless with my life. It finally caught up to me. I got really sick to the point that I had fractured a few ribs from coughing so hard.
At some point during that season, I slowed down long enough to take a vacation. I booked it to Sedona, Arizona to hang with my high school bestie. Being the uber curious person that I am, I decided to get my aura read by a new age healer. When I sat in her chair, she grabbed my hands, and in a sweet & tender voice she asked me to breathe & relax.
Instead, I burst into tears.
When I shared my experience with my bestie, she looked at me with sincerity & gentleness and said: “the thought of breathing & relaxing makes you cry, interesting.”
I often think back on that experience when I am in the thick of life, checking off goals & trying to hang on until I reach the finish line.
The truth is sometimes we just cannot slow down. Sometimes we have to keep going even when all we want is to relax & breathe. Sometimes we just have to push through until we reach the finish line.
And, sometimes that’s not the case.
Sometimes we choose to not slow down long enough to breathe & relax. Sometimes we choose to keep going so that we don’t have to face whatever it is that we are avoiding. Sometimes we choose to not receive those fleeting opportunities to pause. breathe. and relax.
I bet that sometimes it’s a little bit of both: not having the option & not receiving the opportunity.
Over the years, I’ve become ever so watchful for those precious moments when God is extending an invitation to slow down, pause and settle into the sweetness of jus’ being free to relax & breathe without the demand of deadlines, calendar invites and high responsibility.
So, here I am, receiving yet another invite to just be! I am signing off social media, and I am checking out for the month of June to laugh a lot, write a bit, read a lot, tune in, recalibrate & snuggle up with me, God & my peeps. I am setting an intention to cultivate a mindset of abundance instead of a mindset of scarcity:
There is enough time & resources to enjoy breathing & relaxing without bursting into tears at the very thought of pausing.
Wherever you are on your journey, be gentle & kind to yourself. You’re doing the best you can with the tools in your toolbox. Don’t forget to be honest with yourself so that you don’t miss those fleeting invitations to just be. Slow down if you need to slow down. Keep going if you need to keep going.
And, don’t forget to laugh, even at yourself. Most importantly, do all the things that are good for you. Shoot that shot that you’ve been wanting to shoot.
Press into a mindset of abundance!
Cheering you on…