I decided it was time to go see my grandma's homeopathic doctor, Aviva when I was in LA. To my grandma, she was more than a doctor. She was a companion, a confidante, a friend until the very end. She was always there with an encouraging word, homeopathic treatment, massage, and anything else my grandma needed and in my opinion the reason my grandma lived until she was 99 (!).
My first phone call with Aviva erupted in tears. Aviva calmly listened to find out how she could help me. Her voice gently assuaged my worries about my mom and then she said something wonderful, "You are a ray of sunshine, I can just tell." The first of many wonderful things she would say to me.
It was a sunny afternoon. I could feel the warm sun and the ocean breeze on my back as I walked towards her house. I was wearing my new outfit from Nordstrom's. I decided against a long summery dress and bought a 3/4 length pant romper instead. I was feeling confident I wouldn't break down in tears during my time with her.
She greeted me and hugged me like an old friend whom she hadn't seen in forever. I immediately felt at ease in her arms and flopped onto the couch as if I were in my own home. We talked and talked and talked. I did cry a little bit here and there, but it wasn't an ugly cry.
Then she said the 3 words that stopped me from continuing on my downward spiral of guilt and sadness around my mom:
"You are enough."
Thank you, Aviva. You saved my life.
This morning I excitedly got ready for Bootcamp class. A class taught by a former marine. And before you assume it's a guy, it's a woman. In one of our first classes, I went early, and before anyone else came, she told me how she was one of just 8% in her class who were women, how she had pushed through plantar fasciitis and would wake up 30 minutes before everyone else to stretch her feet out, because they were in so much pain. But she had made it through her own bootcamp.
What a badass.
This class had been recommended to me by countless expat women. It wasn't "Are you interested in taking a bootcamp class?" It was more like "Which bootcamp class are you going to?" I was hesitant at first. I mean, I could barely do a push-up, had no upper body strength, and sometimes couldn't even get through a door if the wind was pushing against it. I was also recovering from my own version of plantar fasciitis, but soon realized after hearing our instructor's story that anything can be overcome with mental grit and fortitude.
I ended up going and it saved my life too. Not only was the instructor welcoming and kind, she would modify things for those of us who were not as physically in shape, and she would never make us feel bad. The other women in the class were chatty, not judgy, and also made me feel welcome. It was my first real foray into being social since I had found out about my mom's D word.
In class, this particular morning I noticed our instructor was a little bit tired. She went on to explain that she was out of it, because her husband had been working long hours at work, so she had to pick up the slack at home with her two kids. Totally understandable. She kept apologizing, even though her low-energy day was like the average person's high-energy day, believe me.
I wanted to yell at her like perhaps her old drill sergeants of past did, "YOU ARE ENOUGH!" But instead I meekly said, "Don't worry, we will have to work extra hard to balance out your energy today." And I did work extra hard to try to make her proud.
After class, I caught up with my friend Nancy. She told me how she was moved by my first blog post that was dedicated to her and her mom. Then I asked her for advice about how to move forward with my own happiness coaching business. She had started her own business and in the moments when she doubted herself she thought about how she stacked up with others around her.
"Ok, take Tony Robbins for example," Nancy began.
"Yeah..." I had brought him up in bootcamp class because I had found out that his net worth was somewhere around $480 million (!).
"So, do you think that he is any smarter than you?"
"Well, did he go to Harvard?"
"No...I don't think he went to college."
I could see where she was going with this. She was giving me my own "YOU ARE ENOUGH" pep talk. Thank you, Nancy.
Watching Tony Robbins' TED Talk, I realized that all of us have the resources within ourselves to move forward, even though we assume we need external resources like money, technology, and so on. That is what I had been doing all along. I had assumed I wasn't good enough, I wasn't X, Y, Z enough.
So next time you go down that road of no return or you see someone going down that road, where there's a sign that says "NO OUTLET" think of these 3 words that could just save your life or someone else's: "YOU ARE ENOUGH."
*This blog post is dedicated to my awesome + awe-inspiring bootcamp instructor*