We’ve all seen and most likely have partaken in the #transfomationtuesday fun via social media. Yes it is CRAZY to see how far we have come but most times the photos are to show your growth on the outside. Overcoming a weight issue, acne, competing in a competition, etc. I know I see some photos of myself in my college days where I was managing a tanning salon and cringe. Think orange. YIKES! I have photos of me right out of high school where I literally changed my color of my hair every week. It was blonde with pink or blonde with blue or blonde with purple. You get the idea here. And thanks to Facebook I get to see those “On this day moments” and laugh at how silly I looked. But the transformation I want to talk about is the one that happens on the inside, sometimes without us knowing and sometimes because we have no clue what else to do.
This picture is one that brings back a bucket full of memories and the realization that I truly have transformed into the person I always knew was inside of me. I was in the process of finalizing my divorce and a friend of mine offered to help get me out to New York city.
—Little back story: Before I went off to college with my high school sweet heart and got married I had this dream version of who I was going to be. My dream was to go to NY, enroll in fashion school and live in a dumpy apartment while I waitressed on nights and weekends. I literally wanted to be the “starving artist.” I didn’t want material things I just wanted what I needed.–
However as I mentioned I fell in love, decided to follow him to college, enroll there and marry him. Yes I am proud of the degrees I have now and the memories I created but it wasn’t until I came home one day and realized my house was full of all these things and I wasn’t happy. I had bookshelves filled with my Japanese collections and photos. One was full with all my favorite authors. A vintage record player and home office. Everything that I would need was there but I wasn’t there. The ghost of me was. I wasn’t healthy anymore, I didn’t take pride in the way I looked. I went through the motions everyday and never listened to my inner self screaming at me to change things. When the death of my marriage happened I remember driving the 4 hours home, I hadn’t told my family what was going on. I just showed up with whatever I could fit in my car. I don’t think I even spoke at first, I looked at my mom for a while with tears streaming down my face and finally said ‘Can I come home?’
So there I was. Home. Back to the small town I wanted to get away from so desperately. My close friend at the time, the one I mentioned earlier was a key factor to the success of me. Even though we are no longer friends now I know that without her I would probably still have no true home. When she approached me with the offer of coming to NY I didn’t really know what to say. All my accounts where frozen so the only cash I had was what I had earned working at my dads auto body shop and it wasn’t much. Some how everything worked out and I was on a plane heading to my dream place with a small carry on and the excitement of a teenager all over again.
I stayed with her and her roommates, we would go out at night and site see during the day and it was everything I wanted it to be. I realized how silly my dream was to be a starving artist out there and that it was great to visit but I like a level of calmness to my life as well. I came home a new me, better yet I came home me. I started looking around for job possibilities and took my first green light that got me to living in Arizona. I sofa surfed for a while and eventually landed a corporate job. I reconnected with some friends I met in college who happened to be living out here and started to really settle into the new me.
At first I was toxic, I was on the fence of being happy with myself and not really knowing what happiness was. I’ll admit that I used whiskey as my crutch for my first year out here, my anxiety would send me out of control in any social situations due to the thought that I wasn’t good enough. I started to turn to yoga and meditation and noticed great changes. I began reading books and sketching again, started hiking and going out to eat at restaurants by myself. Without even realizing it I created a home. One within myself so I never felt lost again, one where I knew my worth.
This transformation was one of my biggest and best ones yet because it was all on the inside. No one could see it, no one could hold me accountable or tell if I slipped up. I did it for me. Not my future kids, husband, friends, you name it. This was the most selfish time of my life, if I didn’t want to do something I didn’t do it, there was no fear that the person would be upset with me because I was honest.
In April I have another transformation coming my way. I’ll be becoming a first time mom. I’m am so thankful that I took a year to focus on me. Now I can give our son all of me, I can love him with everything I know just like I do his father.