The First Step is Always Hardest

I was a women’s life coach specializing in divorce recovery. I’d taken (and passed!) all my certification classes including additional study in group coaching. I’d already been coaching women in transition for about six years.

I’d researched, trained, and gained experience, yet there I sat ready to launch but putting it off.

Faced with a blank page, I was excited and ready to start my new adventure but immobile, stuck and unsure of how to begin.

It seemed an apt metaphor for life. After my husband suddenly left me pregnant with our fifth little boy, I had to start life over. I had to reinvent myself, who I was and who I would become. I could no longer be the wife and mother I’d dreamed of being. I could no longer pretend everything was perfect behind the doors of the white picket fence my imagination had drawn around our home. I could no longer do a lot of things.

But I no longer had to do a lot of things either!

My husband’s sudden abandonment meant I was, in many ways, more in control of my own destiny than I had been at any point in my past. I was an adult and reinventing me!

I could choose Coke over Pepsi. I could hang my stockings in the bathroom and leave them for weeks. I could serve the kids mushy pancakes (Okay, every family has a “thing.” Mushy pancakes is our’s and we fully embrace that gross oddity)! I could watch chick flicks and cry over commercials without worrying about red eyes, mascara streaks, or critical comments. I could eat a slice of pizza with mushrooms. Heck, I could eat a whole pizza with peppers and onions and not brush my teeth if I chose! I could take up the whole bed, use all the pillows, and hog all the blankets if that’s what I wanted.

But the truth is I still slept on “my side.”

The scariest thing about being in control of your own destiny is that you are in control of your own destiny. There is no one to blame when things go wrong (and things will go wrong)! There is no one to hold your hand when you’re scared. There is no one to lift you when you stumble and fall. There is no one to sweep you away when humiliation bites at your heels. There is no one to comfort you when you’re lonely or tell you you’re good enough when you feel worthless.

There is no one but you to rely on, and you know that when you make the wrong move, you’re on your own. Even with the best support system in place, at the end of the day, you’re still sleeping on one side of the bed.

And knowing that can make any move seem ominous. Knowing that can keep a woman stuck, unsure, hesitant about moving ahead.

Maybe you’ve felt that way too. Life as you knew it has changed for whatever reason. There is no going back, no changing the past, no recreating yesterday.

There is only the present, the future, and a whole heap of question and uncertainty. Life is a blank page and you’re ready to move on, to write your own story, and to plan your own future, but that blank page is so intimidating.

I understand, but I also know that blank page doesn’t write itself. You control your own destiny and so can write what you want on that page. That page can be filled with your hopes and dreams, your big and little plans, and your greatest, most secret desires.

All this sound overwhelming? Hopes, dreams, big and little plans, secret desires? You know the one who knows them all? The one who never leaves you or forsakes you? The one who can help you discover the path He designed just for you? The one you’ve been wrestling with for control for all these years? The one who will allow you to control your destiny if you wish but who will take you farther than your wildest imaginings if you surrender yourself to Him and wrap yourself in His Love, accept His plan, and embrace His Joy?

The truth is, you’re not alone on your journey. You’re never alone. Put God at the middle of your dreams and let them go. Write down anything that comes to mind. Recreate yourself. Who do you want to be? Be a child. Be silly. Dream big! Embrace Joy!

To help you push past that blank page and get you started, I uploaded a copy of my Break the Blank Page Block.

I chose my favorite name for God and put Him at my center. For today, I chose “Creator” since I know that when I’m tempted to think I can only rely on me, I can remind myself that God is truly my Creator and He can shape me better than I can do myself. Then, I just dreamt and had fun thinking of where I’d like my life to be in three years. You can see some of what I wrote is serious. Some is pure silliness.

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God Bless…

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