How Self-Forgiveness Leads to Empowerment & Celebration

If you’ve somehow missed it, I just had a birthday. This year was a milestone – I turned 40!

This year, something incredible happened.

Typically New Year’s is the time I reflect on the past and plan for the future. This milestone birthday felt like New Year’s to me, so I spent quite a bit of time reflecting and setting intentions. 

Let’s back it up to a few decades in the past… 

On my 20th birthday, I lived in a house with 4 other young women who celebrated with me as I crashed into that decade of my life. My 20’s represent a time of completely expressing and living out my wildest self. I found my extremes and lived unapologetically. I married the Orlando King of Punk and quickly we divorced, something that still hurts my heart at times. 

My 30th birthday celebration was thrown by a toxic boyfriend, which somehow also sets the stage for that decade of my life. My 30s were all about finding myself in relationships. Relationships with romantic partners, friends, family, and most importantly myself. 

I confronted my codependencies, spent the last 7 years of my 30s studying boundaries, learned to embrace my shadow self, struggled through my career and what that meant “about me,” pursued my dreams, and abandoned them. The list goes on. 

So for my 40th birthday, I confronted what I was hiding from myself. I felt I needed to forgive myself, but for what? 

Typically the answer is, forgiving myself for how my first marriage ended, but that answer had no energy around it this time so I dug deeper. 

HOLY SHIT! I had to forgive myself for not going to California, not because I didn’t go but because I didn’t believe in myself. 

OKAY – BACKSTORY IN A NUTSHELL:

I used to work in wardrobe and when leaving my toxic relationship I planned to meet my friend Amy out in LA to pursue my career. Timing wasn’t the greatest.  Things in my mom and sister’s life started to crumble and right before that, I met Rob, my now-husband. 

Rob and I had a whirlwind romance and quickly fell in love. Everything about the way our relationship started screams that we shouldn’t have worked out but somehow, we have been working out for more than 8 years now and we have a very rewarding marriage. 

Anyway, I loved falling in love and I hated what was happening in my family so I made the decision to come right back to Florida, and truth be told, it was the absolute best decision EVER!! My mom is doing great, my sister is thriving, I have a loving marriage and I am now in a career that fills my heart with gratitude daily. 

BUT! I was relieved when love and tragedy came my way because it gave me an excuse not to go to California, something I wouldn’t dare admit before it came pouring out of me and into my journal a few days ago. 

I am proud to say that I have a lot of courage. I am terrified about many things and still do them despite that fear. Believe me,  I was heading out to California TERRIFIED. I wish I could say I was going scared while holding onto an inner knowing that I would succeed, but I wasn’t. I was going to run away from the shit storm I’d created for myself and towards my dreams, fully anticipating that I would fail, but failing was better than staying still. 

Okay, I’m proud of that too. But because I’ve doubted myself so much in my life, I’ve robbed myself of celebration because I never felt I deserved it. 

So today, I forgive myself for not believing in ME and for not celebrating myself. I also celebrate the beauty that came out of making the decision to stay even if it was from a place of fear. 

Today, I know my power and I am insanely grateful. 

Moving forward, my birthday IS my New Year’s.

Forgiveness is the releasing of shame, blame or guilt (towards ourself or others.) If you are ready to confront what is holding you back and start taking life-changing action let’s connect!! In the meantime, check out this meditation to start your self-forgiveness journey.