I leave for Africa today.
By Tuesday evening I’ll be staring at a sky full of stars in the southern hemisphere.
I’m not even going to pretend that’s not blowing my mind a little.
My heart is bursting at the seams. There is light shining out of my face. Out of my fingers. Out of my soul.
The obstacles I have overcome to get to this place, including but not limited to the three (very recent) attempts to leave North Carolina to get back to California to fly back across the country (fewer than 24 hours later) to jump over the pond to get to the other side (of the world) have been . . . exhausting. Challenging. A bit, um. . . unstable, uncertain, and unpredictable.
You know, kinda like life.
There have been moments when I was pretty sure I was going to sell my car to finish raising the required funds for the Africa Yoga Project. There have been hours where I was so overwhelmed by the work in front of me I chose to shut down and do absolutely nothing. There have been days where I felt irresponsible for leaving my kids and my students in the middle of the school year.
But I pushed through anyway. Because I can. Because I do. Because I know.
Every setback was resolved through release. Every obstacle overcome with a few creative pivots, some crafty adjustments, an open mind, and the willingness to ask for, and receive, help.
I’m not bullshitting you.
I could tell endless stories about what has occurred to make this happen. I could share anecdotes that reveal how I reaffirmed repeatedly that I was doing the right thing. I could go on, and on, and on.
But I won’t.
I’ll just share this one, actually. Because this one — it’s enough.
Last week during a conversation with my daughter we somehow landed on the topic of parents and children and how they are alike. This led to a discussion about her perception of me, as in, when she says she is like me, what does that mean? What does she think I am “like?”
Here’s the short version— happy. My kid sees me as happy. In her words, I’m happy “like almost all the time.”
I could not possibly ask for more. No way. No how. To me, this is the greatest form of validation I could ask for. My kids perceive me as happy. They can articulate to me the ways in which they see that manifested in our lives. And, more importantly, they can identify that it is a choice, one that I keep making every day in the way that I choose to live.
They get it.
My kids know I’m happy.
I know then, that they are too. I know then, that they will continue to be. I know then, that the work I’ve been doing the last few years— defining my purpose, listening to my gut, refusing to return to conventional, normal, predictable, or to take “safe bets,” has been a total win.
Happiness is a choice. It’s mine, and it’s theirs too.
I’m leaving for Africa, and I’m happy.
I hope, most sincerely, that you are choosing to be too. Life is beautiful. Go and get yours.
Try. Fail. Learn. Repeat.
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