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  • Writer's picturedebraleegroup

How to find the love

Three days ago, my daughter Lana and I started our drive to move her to Denver. She is beginning her first post-college job on Monday. We went from driving 16 hours to immediately setting up her apartment.

I am so grateful to be able to help her get settled. As a parent, however, I also feel it is essential for her to have some skin in the game. Luckily, the company she is working for is giving her a moving stipend, and that’s helpful, but with all the travel it took to get here, it’s not enough.

The travel actually started a month ago when we flew here to find her an apartment. Now the day has finally come.

This is my second daughter to move across the country. The two things that concern me are that she is safe and that our relationship stays strong.

I have been a huge advocate of helping my daughters follow their own paths and finding what they are passionate about even, or in some cases especially when it does not match my own.

I also want them to know that passions can shift over time and that to live the best life you need to be continually asking yourself what do you want now?

As their priorities shift, their passions change as well. And that’s okay. Growth is good, and you need to make sure to allow for growth in all areas.

I know many women, myself included, who stifled their growth when they had a family. Your priorities shift to your children and careers and, as a result, life gets so busy that you stop taking time for you. There’s always something else to do, and you get minimized.

I speak from experience. On the surface, you would never guess I was not taking care of me. I was still working out and putting myself together, but I had fallen so far out of the daily activity of figuring out what was right for me, that I allowed myself to fall into a deep funk.

I convinced myself that this was the time I take care of everyone else and eventually I would get back to me. Years of living for others took a significant toll on my life.

While it seems that any “good mother” puts their family first, the truth is a “great mom” takes care of herself so she can not only take care of her family but also empower them to live to their fullest.

Somewhere along the way, I decided I wasn’t worthy unless I was there for everyone. In doing this, I allowed so much to go on around me without using my voice even when I knew it wasn’t right. It was easier to appease and go along with everything to just get it all done. Then, before you know it, you’re feeling lost and wondering if you’ll ever feel like you again.

I finally decided enough. Enough of living for everyone else and I started the climb back up.

Today, fully standing in my own power, I use my voice for the things I believe in.

I quickly found that this didn't take away from my family, but enhanced it. The better I felt, the more present and decisive I became. The strength you give yourself, gives permission to those around you to do the same.

Watching my daughters make decisions and build their lives has been an incredible experience. While, we don't always in agree with each other, there’s more love and respect and growth of learning from one another.

Wherever you are, you can shift and uplift your life. That’s where the love is. Love yourself enough to build your own life, and in turn, empower and inspire the people you love.

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