Remember the movie Pretty Woman?
You know, the one from about 30 years ago (gulp, yes, it was that long ago) where Julia Robert’s character is rescued and transformed from being a paid escort to being a valued and treasured woman.
We loved watching Oprah dragging 67 pounds of fat in a wagon onto the stage of her show as we all cheered her on in her weight loss goals.
We celebrate shows like “The Biggest Loser” and “Extreme Makeover” …
Hell, a whole channel was created (HGTV) because of our love for seeing something in the state that it was BEFORE and the soul-satisfying, inspirational transformation of AFTER.
Chip and Joanna Gaines are the new DIY superheroes of the 21st Century!
We love befores and afters.
We really do.
We celebrate transformation
And we want it for ourselves.
When we see it, we have belief in it and taste that it’s there for us too.
I’ve lived so many befores and afters.
Because you may know my story from my book “You’re Not Crazy and You’re Not Alone” you know that before I got symptoms of Hashimoto’s, I was a professional musician, with a sexy body, and a strong career on stage and in the recording studio.
But after some pretty stressful circumstances that crashed into each other, I ended up sick, anxious, and gaining over 100 pounds.
What I didn’t realize then was that my crappy situation was going to become my new BEFORE picture.
- The picture of me being so sick I couldn’t leave the bathroom after I ate.
- The picture of me being so anxious that I had panic attacks and anxiety attacks day and night.
- The picture of me being so scared of what was happening with my health that I slept in my car, night-after-night in the parking lot of the Hospital ER.
- The picture of me being so afraid of getting sick from other people’s germs that I wouldn’t eat at a restaurant.
- The picture of me being so terrified to travel in a plane that I would get the runs just hearing a plane overhead.
- The picture of me being so enormous after gaining 135 pounds from the thyroid issue that I didn’t recognize me.
That was my new BEFORE.
My before was daunting.
What brought me to the AFTER? The new place I’m in?
The middle brought me there.
The process you don’t see when you look at a side-by-side shot.
- The process of digging in to my mind to wrestle with the demons and beliefs that were plaguing me
- Of unearthing my heart and letting it know that it’s safe to come out and play again.
- Of changing my habits
- Researching health protocols
- Facing my fears in unique ways —
With a deep spirituality and desire to be free
- Of stepping into uncomfortable but healthy relationships —
And stepping out of comfortable but toxic relationships
- Of purging my house
- Of changing the colors I wore and had around me
- Of charging more for my business
- Of not defending myself to people who didn’t understand
- Of speaking my piece
- Of saying nothing when silence served me better.
- Of me journaling, crying, walking, escaping to phone calls or social media when I didn’t want to face the pain.
Oh, the pain…
I forgot to mention the value of the pain…
The pain is the thing that told me it was time to change.
The stress and tension was what told me that these old ways weren’t working — and that my AFTER picture was coming.
The pain — that fucking horrible loneliness or stress or angst or despair…
That’s what caused me to stop living in the before.
We so want the pain to go away that we don’t recognize it as this song, from some alien creatures from the Planet called OUR FUTURE vibrating with a melody we don’t understand.
Our future is like a new language to us that we don’t understand and it shows up in the pain.
And the pain causes us to go into the middle, so that we can live a new AFTER.
I have to be honest: When I have pain I just want it to go away as quickly as possible. Seriously… I hate it almost all of the time.
When I used to have a personal trainer who would tell me to breathe into the pain I wanted to tell him two words and they weren’t “Happy Birthday”.
And yet, it was so painful to live my BEFORE picture. It was painful to be sick and to be heavy and to be unhappy.
So, when I started changing, it was a different pain… a NEW PAIN. A Pain-ier pain and I didn’t want that.
I wanted my old, comfortable pain, thank you very much.
But that doesn’t get you to where you want to be.
It keeps you where you’ve always been.
So, we have to trade old pains for new ones.
I tell my coaching clients all the time, “Choose the pain that’s worth it.”
There is discomfort, itching, scratching, aching that comes with healing.
That’s a pain that’s worth it.
I told my kids when we were pulling them back into homeschooling after a bullying situation at their private school, “No school or homeschool situation is going to be perfect. Every place will have its bumps. We choose the place that is worth the problems.”
Your AFTER is worth the problem of the pain you will have to go through in the MIDDLE to leave the land of your BEFORE.
So, you ready for some of my before and after pictures?
- I sleep in my own bed at night.
- I have peace through most of my days and nights.
- I have a really good relationship with my husband and sons.
- I help tens of thousands of people all over the world.
- I fly on a plane to lead my Italian retreats each year.
Where I eat in restaurants.
I mean, really… a lot.
- I have lost over 100 pounds!
If you want support in the middle while you’re on your way to your new after picture, click the link below for my upcoming workshop or reach out to my email if you want to book a coaching session.
I want to remind you that we’re all in a process and that you can do it. You are more powerful than you realize and your life has a divine purpose.
Can’t wait to be with you in the great unfolding…