Growing up on a dairy farm (in the Midwest, U.S.) had its pros and cons… mostly cons as far as I was concerned. I can’t remember the amount of times I thought, “why did they have to drag four children, that they didn’t even seem to want, to the middle of nowhere?” And, then there were five… yes, I’m the youngest of five children… four girls and a boy (and, yes, I do think he got preferential treatment, at least according to my older sisters.) That apparently doesn’t mean that he is any wiser or happier than the rest of us kids, though. I know mom had a Catholic upbringing but I always wondered where the family planning, or lack thereof was. (I did eventually ask in my twenties, to which I got the reply, “back in those days family planning was you planned for a family.” And, that was that.)
I mean don’t get me wrong, we had water, a shelter, public schooling, but I was always the black sheep. We were always the “newcomers,” even though we had lived there awhile. That was one thing, but we thought differently than everyone else. For one thing, my dad had two degrees, which was certainly unusual for this part of the world, but they had also lived all over the U.S. by this time (highly unusual for this area as no one ever left the area), and he left his job in NASA because he didn’t agree with the bureaucracy of it all. Well, okay. This is interesting. Yes, I question everything, and this is good, but not the best influence for working in a team environment. Also, I’m an empath, so I’m finally learning the importance of being compassionate and sensitive, but it’s been a long journey, to say the least. Being in the business-world, these traits do not bode well. I can’t tell you how many times I was told I was too sensitive, that I worried too much, or that I needed to develop a thicker skin. So, then there was shame… I think I’ve always been a rebel, though. Not overtly so, but by the way I dress, the way I think, and how I speak my mind. I could’ve gotten the speaking my mind from my mother, though. My mom was always depressed, and angry. She never really had a career; she would flit from one idea to the next; never seeming fulfilled. She died about 16 years ago now, and I made my peace with her, but it wasn’t an easy journey. She was hard on us all, and my dad was never around. He was always tinkering with something or doing the majority of the farming… probably trying to avoid an argument with mom.
There are two things that really kept me going, though: music and art. I wasn’t ever encouraged to draw or sing, but I loved both all the same. I felt transported to somewhere else other than reality, and I felt like there was something that I could do well, unique to me. Unfortunately, I pretty much forgot about my love for drawing until I was in high school and took a drawing and a painting class, but I still got my undergraduate degree in something more “practical,” a liberal arts degree that I felt could take me in any direction I chose to go. My love for singing also lead me to join choir and also swing choir, even though it was difficult for me being an introvert. And, eventually, I did go back to school to get a Masters in graphic design, so my childhood passion for creativity did keep resurfacing in my subconscious until I finally listened.
I can still remember well, though, how lonely I felt on the dairy farm that I never thought I would leave, when I was at undergraduate school, and for about 15 years after that (when I felt numb, lost and unfulfilled) before I realized I had a purpose and passion on this planet. And, that I had signed up for these unique, valuable lessons; every single one of them. Yes, I still have moments where I’m angry and feel sorry for myself but luckily I learned that being a victim got me nowhere, and neither does anger. I also found that forgiveness for my family, others, and myself has been essential to healing. This also has been a journey. Traditional therapy has helped, but I really found that spirituality has helped me the most. It resonates with me, and it has been a process, but I finally feel like in the past few years that I’m coming home. I feel more alive, healthier, and more purposeful than I ever have before. I’m finally excited about the prospect of the future and its infinite possibilities. I know that I’ve always wanted to make a difference. I just didn’t know how to go about it and I’m still trying to figure out exactly what direction to go, but at least I know now in my heart and soul that I can make a difference. I know that my passion is to help mentor/support women and girls, but to also express my creative side in the process.
My soul’s mission is to inspire and assist sensitive, compassionate, authentic and driven women (and girls) to go after their true hearts desire(s) despite any obstacles, real or perceived, thus creating more equality, compassion, kindness, balance, and peace in not only their world but also impacting the collective good for all.
It is my legacy to be an outspoken, confident, honest and true role model/mentor for women and girls to look up to and to follow their own dreams.