As I have been doing a lot of work this Summer in finding myself thanks to some amazing coaching from Gabrielle Treanor, I thought I would take some time to introduce myself and share the beginning of my self-discovery journey. I’m imperfectly me and am learning to love that!
I’m 47-years old. I didn’t find the love of my life until I was 34 years old and I had to cross an ocean to do it. It was definitely worth it as I have an imperfectly happy life, a supportive husband, two amazing children and two energetic rescue dogs. I have spent the last 10 years working as a blogger and social media manager which fits perfectly around the lives of our family members. My children are now 10 and 6 and in some ways need me more now that when they were little. It’s a different need though and one that generally involves me driving them to their activities and waiting for them to finish.
I’ve had a plethora of health challenges since becoming a mother: 2 Caesarian sections, Post Natal Depression, abdominal surgery, two knee replacement surgeries and asthma and Coeliac disease to name a few. I’m also at that amazing stage in every woman’s life that we try not to speak of…THE MENOPAUSE. According to various blood tests, the medical experts say that I am not pre-menopausal but I know I am. And what a wealth of new challenges that presents! Following a recent appointment with the rather disinterested (and male) GP, I am now the recipient of a Fluoxetine prescription (aka Prozac) which he prescribed partially to help my pre-menopausal symptoms.
Through my coaching sessions with Gabrielle, I have been taking a really good look at me and who I have become. I have realised that a lot of my happiness often comes from outside sources. I love acknowledgement from others yet I find it difficult to champion myself from the inside out. I spend a lot of time trying to please everyone else in the world and often forget about myself. I am learning that my needs are equally as important as the other members of my family and that making and more importantly TAKING time for myself is crucial to my wellbeing.
I feel quite sparkly inside and generally gravitate to glittery and colourful things (stationary, magazines, decorative items) yet I find myself forever dressed in dark colours. I have said before that if I could cut out my torso I would feel much more confident about my physical self. Since having children my body has changed dramatically and although I should be proud of what my body has accomplished I still tend to hide myself as much as possible. Yet, I love speaking to people, presenting in front of crowds, teaching and talking in general so I am not afraid to put myself out there. I have had a pretty prolific social media presence for the last 6 years and regularly share the snapshots of our life but I don’t always feature in those snaps. If I am in them, it’s usually from the neck up!
What I mainly want to communicate through this post is that in spite of physical and mental challenges, I am happy. Imperfectly happy but happy nonetheless. What I want to share is that perfection should never be the goal. Talking about our issues, sharing our concerns, not being okay and telling someone that you aren’t is the key. Struggling with the changes of the female body and fighting to have your voice heard by medical professionals is important. Allowing yourself to have a down day, to retreat to a safe place, to reach out for help and love is crucial to imperfect happiness. I find it refreshing when people tell the truth. In this age of “influencers” and Insta-everything I would rather see an imperfect photo and an honest recount of a difficult day than perfectly crafted and staged nonsense that’s bought and paid for. And that’s what I am trying to get back to. Reality isn’t always pretty. While I am most definitely embracing happy, I can’t be happy all of the time. No one can. Even Oprah has bad days occasionally!
My goal now is to continue to work on me, to share my journey honestly and do my best to help others to find their own versions of imperfect happiness. I hope you will stay with me on the journey!