I was thirty-three years old, seemingly happily married and with a thriving career when my life was turned upside down. I woke up on a Tuesday to find my husband had unexpectedly passed away during the night. My life, a seemingly happy marriage, and a thriving career crashed that morning. I had to face a grieving process and a sobering new reality that my life was a mess - a personal and financial disaster as a result of being married to a drug addict and a crushing blow to my confidence by realizing that for years, I lived in a ‘happy lie.” To my family, friends and outside observers, I seemed happy and fulfilled with everything anyone would want.
My new reality was filled with sadness, loss and the realization that I gave up my own identity for years in exchange for making everyone else in my life happier. I was scared, overwhelmed and totally confused about which direction to go or how to help myself. I spent so many years focusing on what other wanted, I actually had NO IDEA what I wanted.
I couldn’t go back to pretending everything was fine. So I tried to change my world. I redecorated everything. I made new friends. I spent way too much money on clothes, shoes and bags I thought would bring me happiness. I invested time in more than one exhausting relationship with a “prince charming” I thought would “save me”. I went on a quest to finally figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up but couldn’t get past the belief I wasn't actually qualified for anything else. I made lots of bad decisions after drinking too much wine. I finally realized the external changes I was making weren’t working. Something wasn’t right.