Being a working mom can feel like having an alter ego.
One of you hasn't had the time to change out of a stained nursing tank as you rush out the door, babe in arms, to get your preschooler in her carseat and the baby strapped in safe to make library storytime in time.
The other one of you is dressed in an artsy-cool outfit, trying to decipher just what it is your boss wants you to do, troubleshooting a customer service issue and working through a checklist of tasks to get done before daycare pickup.
On a morning walk earlier this month, I saw the scene below. The leaves were just changing color - one of the most beautiful signs of fall bursting into view. At the same time, the last of the wild blackberries were ripening on the vines below the trees. (As any Pacific Northwesterner knows, this invasive species is a thorny pain in the butt 10 months of the year, then rewards us in summertime with huge, juicy berries.)
Fall leaves and summer berries...
I was really struck by the presence of two seasons, side by side. As I mulled over what was so striking about seeing summer and fall together, I thought about my own life. I'm very much in a season of mothering, yet also in a season of growing as a coach and small business owner.
How easy it is to wish to fast-forward my current circumstances! It's easy to view my family as a burden - how many killer opportunities could I have if I weren't so busy hustling kids through breakfast in the morning, if the kitchen didn't always need attention, if my sons were simply grown and capable of handling themselves?
On the flip side, how much more present could I be to my kids if I weren't trying to write a blog post while they play Legos, do a consult call during screen time, or attend a coach training during bedtime?
It's not easy to be a mom and coach. Just like it's not easy to be a mom and a ______ (you fill in the blank! - manager, student, PTA member, small business owner, employee, caretaker for an adult family member, etc).
I sensed an invitation to be thankful for being in both seasons.
Really? How beautiful! Instead of wishing I could fast forward through this stage, I have the opportunity to appreciate being mom to my two boys AND the steward of a coaching practice I love. I get bedtime stories AND professional development. I get brothers taekwondo-sparring in my living room AND coaching calls in my computer room.
Without being a mother, I could never connect as deeply with my clients, who face the same challenges and joys that I do.
Without being a coach, I could never model to my children what it looks like to follow a calling to become more myself for the good of the world - someone who listens compassionately, cares deeply, and encourages others forward.
Are you in a time of two seasons? Depending on your stage of motherhood, there's probably different things you wish you could fast-forward through.
But I invite you to pause and consider the gifts of being in two seasons.
What's hard about it? What's worth being thankful for? And are there hidden ways that one season is strengthening the other? This time of two seasons won't last forever, so instead of wishing it away, consider switching to being grateful for what's good about both.
Hit the 'Comments' link below and let me know! I'd love to hear.
Last month marked the one-year anniversary of my coach certification. It's been an amazing journey and a big step into my calling.
And - did you know? - this calling began when I was 5 years old.
I saw her in the gym. A brown-haired girl with blue eyes. She looked nice. I went up to her and asked, "Will you be my friend?" She said, "Yes," and a best friendship was born.
For most of my life, friendship and relationship-building have been tremendously important to me. They were natural strengths. "You've always had such good friends," I remember my mom saying to me. Others remarked, "That's a good question," time and time again in conversation. I loved going deep in conversation with others and building authentic relationships.
But when I came to a crossroads in my career, being a good friend and great question-asker didn't seem to point me in any professional direction at all.
If there was a way to be a professional friend, I would do it. But no such job seemed to exist.
Then I made a discovery. When a friend told me she was being certified as a life coach, a giant lightbulb CLICKED!
You mean I could have deep and authentic conversations - as my job?
I could create safe spaces for women to share their hearts - as my job?
I could learn to ask questions that would help others make significant changes in their lives - as my JOB?
Get out of town!
I was trained, certified by the Christian Coaching School and Lifeforming Leadership Coaching, and the rest is history.
A client remarked that what I do now is like "sacred friendship". I couldn't have said it better.
When I coach, my clients get someone...
And it's working! Last week a client told me, "I am a completely different person from who I was three months ago." (And she is not an exaggerator!)
I can't wait to help even more women become more themselves this year.
By the numbers
Since beginning my training in May 2016...
I served 26 clients in 10 cities
I led 8 workshops in 2 countries
I began 7 partnerships with organizations to bring self care training to their moms
Would you like to be my friend?
Or do you know someone who would?
I'd love if you introduced us!
I'm looking for:
Every blog post you share, every newsletter you forward, every interested person you introduce me to helps more women know they can get help finding time and energy to care for themselves, so they can end their day feeling happier and more productive.
Thank you so much for celebrating with me! I'm truly honored.
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