“The following story about my life will appear in an upcoming compilation book by Melissa Carter, containing stories from women in various industries and regions regarding the shift that is happening in the world and our society, with women in business and entrepreneurs, with the advancement of women’s roles as CEO’s, as well as women supporting other women.”
Today, as a mother of three, a grandmother of eight, a sister, a daughter and caregiver of my 94-year-young dad, and a business owner, I stand in a much different “State of Being” from where I began. Looking back over my life I am amazed at where I am today, and the differences I see, as I stand in worthiness. You need to understand that most of my life I stood in “Unacceptance.” I was a skinny, large-nosed, buck-toothed little girl with glasses. Unacceptance came in abundance from childhood friends who came and went, sibling rivalry, and a feeling of not being smart enough.
My parents were married fifteen years before I was born and my brother followed two and a half years later, with two miscarriages in between. Mom, God rest her soul, thought my brother could do no wrong. Although I knew my father loved me, he worked hard, seldom played with us and showed very little emotion.
Fortunately, in my teen years, my buck teeth were corrected with braces, my glasses were replaced with contacts, and the nose, well, it stayed the same. Unfortunately, the unacceptance also remained the same. All those influences from my youth impacted my life in a destructive way, leaving a void that caused me to search for acceptance with degrading choices that haunted me for the next twenty-five years.
Fast forward to 2008. At the age of fifty-three, I was blessed to retire from my job after thirty years. My parents, elderly by then, needed extra help. I found myself divorced from my third husband— yes, I said third—and my children were out on their own. This setup seemed like the perfect escape from the daily hauntings visited upon me by the ghosts of my past. What I soon discovered was that no matter how much I hid from myself and shoved away my past choices, they always circled back into my thoughts. I was consumed with dread that if my children ever found out, they would condemn me a terrible mother, and there would be no forgiveness or love from them ever again. I could not, nor would not, want to live without their love. My life was wrapped up in my love for them.
God had a plan all along. His bringing me back to St. Louis at that point in time was not an accident. Most of my parent’s neighbors were still the same when I arrived, but one day Dad introduced me to Lisa, a neighbor I had never met. She soon would become a life preserver provided to me by God. About a year after my return to St. Louis, Lisa became a certified life coach. I didn’t know the purpose of a life coach other than I was pretty sure it had to do with people telling her their “life” story. What did I have to lose in telling her mine? Nothing, until my thoughts took over and I believed that by sharing my story with her, unacceptance would surely rear its ugly head once more. But I plunged forward anyway, and to my amazement, Lisa supported me where I was with no judgment. What a concept!
Now playing: Every Heart – Sara Haze
This was the beginning of awareness, acceptance and awakenings within myself. The feeling of worthiness did not come overnight, but this was definitely a beginning. I completed coaching with Lisa and only wanted more tools. My pastor, who happened to be Lisa’s coach, was offering training courses in how to become a coach. Well, of course, I had no intention of becoming a coach. I couldn’t coach like these professionals with whom I was now acquainted. NOT ME. I just wanted more tools.
I will never forget this conversation between my pastor and me:
“I don’t want to become a coach,” I said, “but what do you think about me taking your training for more tools?
“I believe you should take the training for whatever reason you want,” he replied. “However, I would like to preface that by saying, if you think you can’t be a coach like the others, you are right. You are not them. You will have your own gifts.”
I signed up for training through Excalibur Coaching Institute. I know you won’t believe this, but just halfway through the training I knew without a doubt what God was calling me to do. In turn, this training and certification led to the launching of my own coaching business, Etched In Your Heart.
My training did not stop with the “Life Coach” certification. Core Alignment Coaching/Emotional Wisdom Training with Kate Michels knocked on my door. What a journey Core has been: ups, downs, setbacks, and enormous expansion. Today, without a doubt I know who I am: a “Confident, Compassionate, Worthy Woman” who stands in her truth and knows she is enough. As a Core Alignment Specialist I empower those who do not recognize their self-worth by showing up and supporting from a position of seeing my own worthiness. It’s been a long road; a road that was well worth the journey. As I look back and reflect, I was able to RISE UP, not give up.
I believe that within the coaching industry, women support from a natural place. I support clients of both genders; however, most my clients are women. Currently, I am also an independent contractor with the nonprofit organization, Helping Hand Me Downs, where I coach and support families and single moms. My own personal experiences and an understanding heart help me to relate. Those degrading choices I once made were large stepping stones to living my purpose.
As a Core Alignment Specialist, the successes are the opportunities to support my clients and see their lives transform. To see them go from living unworthy, to having a life worth living. The challenges I experience are wanting to give away tools to do just that, and the fact that most individuals don’t know what they don’t know. Therefore, they don’t know the value of hiring a coach.
For those women who are looking to begin a career or advance their careers, I would say, “Be fearless and jump in order to soar.” To young girls, I would say, “Don’t allow the influences and beliefs of your life up till now tell you that you are not worthy. Rise up and recognize who you are, and stand in the truth that it is okay to be you.”
I consider my life to be unique. Unique in that is it mine, and mine alone. Etched In Your Heart has been, and continues to be, nothing short of a miracle. A miracle that found its way to RISE UP and let my worthiness expand so that I can now make a difference for others as well as myself. I am eternally grateful for the awakenings, connections and opportunities as I live my life aligned, and know that there is more to be created. The legacy I shall leave is that I created more, and lived whole, perfect, creative and resourceful from the information that was shared with me, and which I now pass on to others, supporting them to live “Worthy.”