The months of October and November hold a very delicate place in my heart. I died three years ago this week and now I am who I am today. Okay, let me explain.
Three years ago in mid-October, I quit my fancy corporate sales job and launched my coaching practice with little cash reserves and a lot of ambition.
And three years ago this very week, after launching said business, I fell ill with flu-like symptoms and was hospitalized to treat acute abdominal pain, which the cause still remains a medical mystery though doctors have suspected stress to be a culprit.
After being discharged one week later, I was slapped a $45,000 hospital bill and discovered a parasite in my colon and an infection. It wasn’t an ideal situation to be in. I was a brand new solo entrepreneur for only a couple of weeks before becoming an invalid where I wasn’t able to care for myself for several weeks to follow.
Since I was starved during my hospitalization and lost a lot of muscle mass during that time, I could barely eat or hold down food as I was trying to recover. I could barely walk without assistance. I couldn’t even drive. I wasn’t in a relationship then, so thankfully my mom and sister were there for me during one of the most vulnerable times in my life when one should not be a lone.
I was not in the right state of mind to work the coaching business so I let it sit idly.
As every day passed me by and I could barely get up off the couch, I was losing money. Lying there every single day for weeks, I was feeling immensely regretful, fearful, doubtful, and now depressed. I kept worrying about how I was good for nothing physically, becoming broke, and wondering how I would afford the roof over my head, the car payments and bills that were piling up, and the food on the table to feed my son and me.
I felt so frail and hopeless that many times I entertained the idea of allowing myself to wither away to nothing so that my son could at least be taken care of with the insurance money he would collect after my death.
It was a very sad time for me. I had never thought about letting myself die prior to this experience. And though I didn’t allow myself to die, I do believe that a part of me died three years ago. I shed a part of me that was holding me back. I know that I wouldn’t be who I am today if this didn’t happen to me. I know that this and all the experiences to follow helped shape me to be stronger, braver, smarter, and better as a result.
The past few weeks since returning to Milwaukee after my book writing hiatus have been emotionally trying for me. Huge transitions such as moves, job changes, marriage or break ups will challenge your emotional and mental health, which ultimately impacts your physical health and well-being.
I found myself beginning to spiral downward just like three years ago and it was scaring the crap out of me. I found myself saying, “Not this again, Berni. You can get through this, but it is hard once you’re down. Get up or I’ll kick you!”
So, here’s the good news. I got up with a little of my own shin kicking!
Though we can’t prevent bad things from happening to us, we can decrease the length of time we allow ourselves to be subjected to that toxic feeling and environment. The thing about being an individual is that we have the right and the opportunity to make choices and decisions. Sometimes they help us and sometimes they hinder is. But, the beauty is we have the power to control the kind of life that we want.
We are the greatest barrier standing in our own way.
When I found myself getting stuck in my head like I did three years ago, I began reaching out to my family, friends, and sources of support to obtain the inspiration and motivation I needed to reignite my fuel. I quickly brought myself back to the level of consciousness that has always served me. I had to get out of my head and begin living with that passion (the “WHY”) that drives me every single day.
So, my friends, thank you for stopping by and supporting this blog by reading and reflecting on my honest thoughts and real experiences. I want for you to realize that it’s not about making judgments or criticisms of yourself when you endure times like these. We can be our own worst critic.
I want for you to give yourself a break, cut yourself some slack, and own the confidence to go out and attack life by the horns and ask for what you want. If you still find yourself challenged to do so and need a good kick, I know someone who can give you a good shin kicking! 🙂
No matter how challenging life can be at times, I wake up excited every day to do what I love and live for. That is to lead life with passion being my authentic self and helping others to do the same so that they can fall back in love with themselves excited to wake up every single morning without an alarm clock.
Life Spark Moment –> Once you can remove the fear and worry and replace them with passion and gratitude for life, you can do anything you put your mind to.