From the Hand to the Heart:
Women creating support systems
to inspire greatness in themselves and each other
As I sit here, on this brisk fall morning with my mug of coffee. I am sitting back and watching the pace of my social media feeds pick up with the excitement of fall being upon us. It makes me think about a particular conversation I had with one my mom friends about Sex & Intimacy, about how it is only one facet of who we are as women. We are also Mothers, Wives, Girlfriends, SAHM, WAHM, and for some not a mom at all. Keeping this in mind, I have decided to reshape this beautiful body of copy this morning. I feel the time is right to add this to my business blog. I have given so much thought to how I will shape up my blog, what I have to say to the world as a public figure, what I want my message to be. I believe it is only right to discuss topics I can personally relate to. Therefore, My blog is going to also cover Motherhood, BDSM, Sex & Intimacy, Sex Magic, Being Small Business Owner, and finding Balance amongst it all.
So, without any further delay, here is my Hand to the Heart.
You will have to forgive my blunt and rather direct nature here…Today, I came here with the intention of farting a rainbow at you. Well what my does this mean? If you ask my girlfriend ‘short stack” she will tell you I am the type of person who farts rainbows… It means I look for the absolute best qualities a person could possibly have and I work with them to develop and empower those positives attributes. Life was not all rainbows and gummy bears for me growing up. I had an under developed support system at home.
It is a vulnerable place to write my story for the world to read. However I know in my heart I am not alone in my journey. Although we as women may have had different childhoods a few will be able to relate to my journey. As an Extroverted Introvert & Empath I would Much rather sit down for a warm cup of coffee and bond over our life experiences. Today However, I choose to embrace my 30’s with the mind frame of Eleanor Roosevelt. “ Do one thing every day that scares you” lol Today this scares me. So let’s roll up our sleeves and get started.
We are here today to learn about support systems and to inspire greatness in ourselves so that it may radiate outward into the world. What is support? What does it mean? How does it affect us in our everyday lives? I have spent the last several months having coffee dates with anyone and everyone I can. No particular topic to discuss just to listen to what they have to say. It is amazing how much you learn about a person when you choose to listen to them. Sometimes it’s more than listening to a person. Sometimes, It’s watching them, the way they move their bodies the look in their eyes. Sometimes they can not speak at all. How do you build a support system for someone unable to verbally respond back to you?
Support comes in so many forms. I must warn all of you we are about to bond over my personal story of what support truly means to me.
I will begin this journey at one of the most primal places a person should be able to finds support in life…. My Mother.
I hadn’t physically seen my mother since 20 mins after my youngest daughter was born and it had not ended very well at all:
This was physically my 3rd child I carried and gave life to. Yet this was the 5th child I was raising. My 2 younger siblings were my first babies. I as the oldest cared for and nourished their little hearts. Woke them up got them dressed for school made lunches, checked homework… I took on the role of mom while she was not emotionally present.
That day, after a long and painful labor and delivery, I allowed the emotional state of having just given birth to my daughter to best me. My mother had made a few too many snarky comments about motherhood and bonding with her new baby. I was very upset at the suggestions she had made and I could no longer hold back my anger.
This hospital visit ended promptly when I pulled my nurse to the side and asked her to remove my mother stating I need a nap and so did my baby.
It was extremely uncomfortable for me as a mother to hear the words she spoke that day. Sobbing while I sat breastfeeding my new bundle of joy. I stroke her eyebrows, and played with her little fingers. When she opened her dark blue eyes I sat in awe never being able to imagine putting her or either of her older sisters through the messy childhood I had experienced with my own mother. In this moment I pulled every ounce of childhood pain within me a buried it deep. To hide it away from the world. So that I could focus all of the energy in being the very best parent I could ever possibly be. The only problem I didn’t see coming was depression.
Every Mother’s Day I would be a little gloomy. It took my core group of friends sitting me down for a warm cup of coffee while our children played to realize this. I had to face this fear, however I was afraid to face this alone….. So, This is how it all changed. Mind you it didn’t happen overnight it took many long months, many tears and many many cups of coffee to reach this moment.
I finally felt I had that strong sense of support as a wife as a mom as a woman to face this anger I had been holding onto. If nothing else I needed the closure for myself.
It was extremely difficult for me to face my estranged biological mother. Without having the strong support system I feel this might not have been possible. To have the husband who says “ I love you and I Here for you” To have the strong “intuitive friend” who steps forward and acts as a guide when you feel lost. To have the “cheerleader friend” in your corner cheering wildly arms flailing “ you’ve got this Hillsdale it will be ok” and to have found that strong mother figure in life whisper to you” You need to do this for yourself”
I finally tracked her down, At our first meeting I was not sure it was truly her. I had my back to the door I knew she was coming in from. She had to walk past me first in order to see me. Her hair was completely grey, and the only way I could honestly recognizes my mother was the shape of her butt. It was the same shape I remembered seeing from the hospital.
She turned around and made direct eye contact, for a moment we both were still, eyes watering and not sure whether to hug, shake hands, or even dare I say run away from each other. That strong adrenaline rush you get for the fight or flight response kicked in. I stood from my chair and choked “hi mom” Without any further hesitation she ran and wrapped her arms around me so tightly I could barely breathe. At 30 years old I can honestly say my mother has never held me so tightly. We cried for a solid 2 mins as I tried to focus on the clock and pull my emotions back inside.
We sat and talked about everything she has missed in the last 5 years of life. We laughed and we cried not as mother and daughter, but as women with different backgrounds and lifestyles. At the end when it was time to leave her she grabbed me again and pulled me extremely close and whispered. “ I know you are here for closure, so daughter of mine allow me as your mother to give this to you.”
“ I hated you as a child, you were always better at being a mother than I was. I never gave you the chance to be anything but the mother. All of the pain you have in your heart leave it here with me. I am sorry, I could not be more for you. But in some small way my non presents has forced you to grow and develop into the woman you have become standing here before me today. For whatever it is worth to you, I am extremely proud of the mother, the wife and the business woman you have become. Because it forced you to create the support system you needed that I was never able to give you.”
With this she released her tight grip around my lungs. I took a very deep breathe trying to pull my tears back inside to hide from the world. This was never the emotions I had wanted her to see from me. Yet these very strong words the entire fluid and direct conversation was something my mother had never been capable of doing in the past. It had taken me by surprise. I could not decide if I was grateful she finally saw me… or if I felt badly for never seeing this within myself before.
This small yet extremely important milestone stone in life made me realize just how important the word support truly was. I walked away from her feeling lightheaded, my arms and legs left like jelly. The more air I took in the less pain I felt in my chest… it was like a heavy burden had finally been removed from my heart. Even though those words hurt to hear, they were not the worst she has ever said to me by far.
One of my very close girlfriends greeted me just outside and embraced me in a large warm and supportive hug. It felt completely different from the gripping hug of my mother. I felt supported like I didn’t have to stand so straight or tall anymore as though in some way I could release my tears. My girlfriend pulled back away after a minute looked me directly in the eyes and said “ I love you, and i’m so proud of you for facing her today.” We walked back to the van we listened to our hippie music and laughed as we came home. We didn’t talk about anything else to do with my visit at all. This to me was support. It is to know that even when in my heart I felt depleted I was NEVER alone. I had my girlfriend waiting silently for me to come back.
My husband and my children were ready for my return as well. My girls ran up to me wrapped their little arms tightly around my neck and whispered “Mommy I love you” My husband followed right after “ Looked me in the eyes and said” if you want to talk about anything i’m here, I love you. I will not ask a single question until you are ready to speak. But never forget I am right here waiting for it.”
Over the next few days, I hung out with my core group of girlfriends we took our kiddos to the park and fully engaged in dissecting the psychology of my visit. My cheerleader friend made me giggle.
I wanted to tell this particular story today because I feel most of us in today’s society can relate. Maybe not to a mother saying she hated us as a child. However the concept of facing a fear and never feeling alone is important. To have a support system in this world gives us the success we need to grow to develop to simply be.
This right here is why I fully immerse myself in Women creating Support Systems to Inspire Greatness in Themselves and Each Other.
We Women are capable of amazing things. Most of us never truly look in the mirror and see what is reflecting back at us. We bring life into this world. We nurture and love our children. We grow each and everyday watching supporting and building as we go.
Support can be as simple as a smile, or even just a nod to that first time mom in the grocery store. Baby is fussing, mom’s hair is a mess and the dark circles under her eyes can be seen from ale 3. Another example of a more singular system of support. A long time ago before I had children. I was a CNA for an Alzheimer’s and Dementia Unit. During this stage of my life Support meant something to a different degree that I still hold very dear to my heart. It meant to physically care for another human being no longer capable to care for themselves. To walk into a room drawl open the curtains to greet a patient I have cared for, for the last several months. To look them in the eyes and see they know me … but can no longer connect who I am.
I had a nonverbal system for greeting each of them. I would kneel next to where they sat, so we could maintain direct eye contact. Next a smile slow and meaningful from the very bottom of my heart to express the love I felt for them. Creating this routine support made our daily task run much smoother.
This also goes a step further, as a caregiver, it means when the lifecycle of another person is coming to an end. It’s sitting down next to them in a chair while holding their hands as they draw the last breath of air into their body and you watch as the chest falls and they let go. Finally the body is at rest. It had come to the end of its cycle
. To me this is support, it is to help another human being. This all has shown examples of support in our personal lives. How do we find it in business?
I found a really wonderful quote online…. several actually.
Speak in such a way that others love to listen to you.
Listen in such a way that others love to speak to you.
For me this Quote represents all that I work for in my community. I want to hear my neighbors and my friends. Anyone can talk, who truly listens? This bold statement is painfully obvious common sense that we sometimes forget to maintain. The materialistic side of this is a simple cup of coffee. Its non- threating it gives you a solid 15 mins to watch the other person’s body language. What do they have to say to you? Do the words they speak really match what they show you?
If you can honor a person with 15mins of time, you are able to determine if your goals are going to aline correctly or even closely enough to consider building a network of support. You can get a feel for the strengths and weaknesses of another and learn how to make them functional for the greater good.
We as women have a knack for it. Look at the soccer mom who is just returning back to the workforce after spending many years at home with her little ones. What qualities, skill set does she show you? Soccer mom means a schedule, it means deadlines it means she probably has a functional calendar or system to manage life right? How about the loud mom? You need that positive cheerleader who will direct traffic and motive staff or yourself to reach goals.
My personal favorite and again forgive my raunchy self title.. THE A HOLE friend…… This friendship is one of the most important relationships you will ever have. The a hole friend will almost never tell you what you want to hear. However it will be everything you need to hear when the time is right. They will not sugar coat anything for you. All of these relationships working together are what builds us as people, women, men, children young, old. This is the golden ticket. So as you leave this room today… think about it which friendship relationship supports you. Who do you support back??
This right here is what matters most. Look at the circle of influence that currently surrounds you. It does not have to consist of many people. It only needs to consist of people who truly love and support you and the goals you put in place for yourself
We grow each and everyday watching supporting and building as we go.
I want to take a moment and dedicate this beautiful and emotional speech to my core group of friends and family. For all of the laughter for all of the tears I appreciate each and every moment I have shared with all of you.
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