Tonight, I’m crashing into bed proud of myself. Over the past three weeks, I’ve pushed myself harder than I can remember. I took on three new clients in an already insane season. I worked a lot of 12+ hour days – and still went to bed on time. I took care of my body. Today, I ran my fastest mile in years. I didn’t neglect my social life. I still found time to read (my favorite thing of all, of course.) And miraculously, I kept up with laundry.
It’s weird to be proud of yourself on the internet, I know. In the name of being authentic, we all post about a lot of hard moments. We want to build a community that isn’t fake, that isn’t sunshine-y on Instagram when the world is breaking in front of us. I think that’s important. But we don’t share a lot of victories, do we? Even when it feels unnatural, I’m taking deep breaths and sharing the good, too. Not because I’m patting myself on the back, but because I believe in a life of celebration. And I’m hoping that if I share the good, you will, too. And then we can celebrate you. Because what kind of community are we building if we can’t mourn heartache and celebrate success with the same fervor?
I’m certainly not bragging that I have it all together. I’m writing today because three weeks ago, I wasn’t sure I could do it. When I quit my job last summer to pursue this writing dream, I had no idea what kind of adventure my life would turn into. I was terrified to leave consistency and security behind, even if it was time. But I took deep breaths. “This is my dream. I will figure it out.”
Honestly? Last fall, life was a lot of Netflix and networking and searching freelance sites for the millionth time. Don’t let anyone tell you self-employment is immediately easy. It’s slow going at first. It’s lonely at first. And you have to be your own boss even when you want to be the lazy employee. I was broke a lot. And bored a lot. And doing a lot of jobs I didn’t love just to make rent. But I took deep breaths. “This is my dream. I will figure it out.”
Then, overnight, the tide shifted. Not ever-so-slightly or anything, mind you. More like getting thrown into the deep end of a wave pool. I woke up one day and had work – more work than I knew what to do with. And somehow, that was scarier. I had gotten used to my slow pace & hardly remembered how to handle the breakneck. Not to mention, my soul got healthy in the slow & I was terrified to lose it in the rush. But I took deep breaths. “This is my dream. I will figure it out.”
I’m still figuring it out. Waves will still knock the breath right out of me some days, I’m sure. But I just emerged from the craziest season I’ve seen in self-employment yet. And I’m still swimming. And I’m celebrating that with everything I have in me.
So if you’re about to take the leap from a job you don’t love, if you’re praying and networking and waiting for the work to come, or if you’re staring at a calendar with zero white space… I’m here for the heartaches and I’m here for the celebrations.
Take deep breaths. This is your dream. You will figure it out.