I wonder if this is the life I was meant to live?
I’ve written that phrase in my personal diaries several times since I began documenting my thoughts in 4th grade. Every day I wake I robotically empty the dishwasher, answer my emails, cook, clean, exercise, work and run errands. There is a long list of have to do’s, need to do’s, but rarely anything I truly want to do.
Like write this journal.
I’ve been meaning to write for months – hard to believe I used to update my blog weekly, but since three adorable tornadoes, three care home businesses and three years of No Excuse craziness swept through my life, I haven’t been able to fully find ground.
Last year I published The No More Excuses Diet book, traveled the east coast, appeared at 5 fitness expos, visited NYC three times, purchased a home, opened my 3rd care home, released my Belly Ball, filmed a big project and adjusted to having three kids in three different schools while also driving them to Karate, soccer, t-ball, church classes and dance activities. In-between this madness, I was maid of honor at my best friend’s wedding and rejoiced seeing my other close friend give birth to her first son after years of infertility. It was truly an exciting year filled with parties, festivities and celebrations but most of all – expectations.
Despite just getting off a flight, even though I missed my family, I was expected to leave again in a few days. Despite being tired, I was expected to have energy when I hosted expo stages and meetups. Despite feeling stressed, I was expected to meet deadlines and follow through.
Even though I was unmotivated, I was expected to inspire others. While I was sad, I was expected to smile. I was expected to sell lots of books, energize crowds and give as much as I could to my family, my employees, my volunteers, my husband and my commitments.
I felt like a failure.
Nothing I did ever felt like it measured up.
I didn’t feel good enough.
Despite seemingly achieving so much in 2015, I spent the last month of the year coping with anxiety. My husband and I grew apart and my spiritual health was declining. I felt lonely and disconnected with family and friends.
I asked myself again, if this is where I was supposed to be. I thought back on the days when I used to journal weekly on this website, when I used to talk openly about following your dreams, pursuing your passion and taking calculated risks in seeking the ultimate rewards. My efforts to progress my personal, professional and physical endeavors is taking a lot of work – as it should. I’m not one to sit idle for took long. I have goals and I am working towards them. Does it take a toll? It should, if it’s work. Should you be more balanced? You can try.
I seek balance, but “balance” is like the word “perfect”, it doesn’t exist. We can strive for it, but we will never achieve it. Sometimes I’m a great employer, other times I’m a great wife, my children think I’m an amazing mom, but most of the time, I’m just trying to do my best, knowing that my best is good enough. Dreaming is good, desiring is great, acting is better, but it all falls short if you’re expecting a unicorn at the end.
We can’t chase a unicorn that doesn’t exist, but we can match our actions with our expectations.
And like many, last year, I expected a lot.
I expected to resemble people’s perfect Instagram pictures with their perfect house, and their perfect husband with their perfect kids who came out of their perfect body…
I’m not perfect.
I live an un-photoshopped life.
I’ve got old food in my fridge. I packed mac n cheese for my son’s lunch tomorrow. I have stretchmarks on my tummy. I hate my husband twice a month. I officially have two gray hairs. I struggle with work-life balance and I have an insatiable desire and perhaps unrealistic passion to change the world.
Is this the life I was meant to live? I don’t know. But this is the life I choose to live. These are the children I choose to raise, the husband I choose to love and the work I choose to do. Our greatest gift is our free will to decide what our destiny will be based on the decisions we make every single moment of our day.
While my ‘to do list’ often feels forced, truth is, I’m not forced to do anything I don’t want to do. I robotically exist, zealously persist and tenaciously insist that we must be accountable to a life we control.
So I’m moving my expectations, drawing my goal markers and changing my pace. In 2014 I sowed, 2015 I reaped, in 2016 I plan to feast. Cheers to the Best Year Ever.
Lake Tahoe was amazingly beautiful.
January 2016 was a busy month! Here was my meetup in Austin, TX!