When I first started out on my own, things didn’t look good for me. I was newly divorced, had no resume or degree, and had spent the last 23 years as a wife, mom and volunteer. I had to figure out a way to support myself. I wanted to be an entrepreneur because I realized that I didn’t have much to offer corporate America. I was pretty beaten down. I believed that I lacked basic skills and had no training or anything valuable to offer. I knew I had a lot to learn but I wanted to try anyway. In fact, I felt compelled to try. There were many people that suggested to me that I go get a job. But I continued on with my dream to work for myself. I refused to give up.
It hasn’t been an easy journey. I realize that going through a divorce isn’t the worst thing that can happen but it was rough. One of my saddest days was when I realized that I couldn’t afford the gym membership that had, in a way, kept me sane the last few months as my life was being rearranged into a drama filled, unpredictable mess. Going to the gym seems like it’s a small thing but I can tell you that to me, it was a big deal. I desperately needed the emotional and physical outlet that the Y gave me. I could go there and remove myself from the drama for an hour or so and just let go. The camaraderie, love, empowerment and encouragement that I got there kept me going on many days.
On this journey there were days that were so hard that I couldn’t even talk about it to my family and friends. Times when I cried on my knees asking God to help me figure out how I was going to support myself. I went through every penny of savings just trying to not lose my house before I could get it sold. I needed to get the equity out of the house, which would help get me going in business. But if I lost the house, I was doomed. This was during the downturn of the Real Estate market. If it weren’t for an incredible friend, I would have lost my house before I could sell it. When the house did finally sell, I was down to my last $300. It has truly been a miraculous journey.
With sadness, I bravely approached the sweet lady at the check-in desk and told her I needed to cancel my membership. She very gently asked me why. As I explained, I know she saw the tears in my eyes even though I was doing my best to conceal them with sunglasses. She explained to me that the Y had a scholarship program for people like me. They have an annual fundraising partners campaign every year and people in the community selflessly give so people like me can experience all that the Y has to offer. I have been blessed to be a recipient of this program and I am abundantly grateful to all those that have given to this.
But today, I gave! It was the first time that I was in a position where I could be the one giving back. Amen and Amen! What an empowering feeling it was to put my money in that box so I could be a blessing to someone else. I can’t even put into words how good that felt for me.
After over six years of pushing and persevering, my business is growing and things look so much better for me. I finally feel like I really can do this and that maybe I wasn’t crazy for trying.
As I experience more success, and every step no matter how small is success, there are a few people who now see me as someone to tear down. I’m sure none of them saw the struggle that has brought me here. They only see me as a competitor and want me stifled. I don’t desire success at the expense of someone else. There is room for all of us to succeed. Success is infinite!
We can never see or understand someone else’s journey. We have all struggled at some point with different things. We needn’t tear each other down. Give instead. Help each other up. Be the kind of person who encourages and celebrates the success of others. If you are struggling, then accept help. Allow others to bless you. If you are able to give, then be a blessing. When you do that, you set into motion such good will that it will come back to you many times over.
If you would like to give as well, you can do so HERE.
#YMCA #KatyY #GiveBack #Empowerment #GreenTeam #BodyCombat #Yoga #BodyPump #Love