In short, years ago I began to recognize a desperate need for positive change in my life. Hitting my self-esteem "low" as an insecure, directionless, unfit, depressed, financially-drowning, frazzled mother of two young children, I needed to grasp at anything that felt like it could start pulling me out of the deep emotional trench I was living in. I won't go into the whole story here (follow my new-ish blog to see the in-depth, crazy, up-to-date version slowly unfold), but I will tell you that my next chapter began by coming across a quote from my most favorite parenting book, The Parent's Tao Te Ching: "If your children see in you a sincere celebration of who you are, they will return eventually to their natural joy, in themselves and in you..."
My Go-To "Epiphany" Beach
Stumbling across this powerful message led to a long, introspective, solo walk on the beach, which in turn led to an epiphany/uncharacteristic decision to run a marathon in 2010. (I wasn't even running a mile at that point.) The journey I took went way beyond reaching the finish line of that first marathon; as I ran "out of my shell" over the next several years I (literally and figuratively) navigated many mountains and valleys, twists and turns, and eventually discovered how to travel through my life with wholeheartedness and true happiness. By consciously accepting my "flaws" and "inadequacies", actively learning and growing, challenging my own perspectives, and repeatedly leaping out of my comfort zone mentally and physically, I have finally figured out how to see, to be, and to model for my children a version of myself that I CAN sincerely celebrate. As my jewelry business, Rugged Grace, was born from this transformative time in my life, I integrate into my work's mission my newfound perspectives on building inner and outer strength, and maintaining a connection with joy. I am committed to living in, and sharing, a constant spirit of peace, love and gratitude. If I had to describe myself in just two words, I would choose ‘rugged grace’. It’s who I was before I knew how to identify it, it’s who I finally recognized myself to be, it’s who I celebrated and built myself up to be, and it’s who I am and always will be. When combined, those two words feel affirming, aligning and grounding to me, and I’ve learned that they are the foundation of my commitment to happiness as I continue to grow through and navigate this wild life. I currently live in Santa Cruz, CA with my husband of 18 years, and we have two incredible children (a son and a daughter, ages 15 and 12), who have inspired me, more than they realize, to live my brightest, broadest and most fulfilling life. With peace, love and rugged grace,
Life is an adventure. (Love and gratitude are my guides.)
<<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>> "Not until we are lost... do we begin to find ourselves." -Henry David Thoreau <<<<<<<<<<>>>>>>>>>>
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