For Better of For Worse

by Amy on September 15, 2017

This morning my daughter went MIA before school. We only had 10 minutes left before it was time to leave for the bus and she still hadn’t finished her homework, eaten any breakfast, brushed her teeth or put on her shoes.

I found her outside barefoot with some neighbor friends playing with a remote control car.
“Alice Albano!” I barked. “Get in here now.”

My bright light of a girl crept back to the house with her shoulders slumped. I embarrassed her. She didn’t speak to me the rest of the morning. Didn’t even wave good bye to me from the bus.

“Stop barking at me!” My husband is known to say to me.

Bark. Bark. Bark.

It’s what I do sometimes. I’m not proud of it.

It’s not easy to be an introverted, highly sensitive mother of three, married to the nicest man in the world.

After the kids get on the bus I luxuriate in coming back to my quiet house where I can be alone for six and a half hours. Is that right? Because, if we’re being honest, the time goes by in a blink of an eye.

I watch the clock like a terrified hoarder of each passing minute because at 3:10 I am back on duty.

And each minute that I count until those little faces run to me open armed after a long day at school, I grapple with the shame I carry for holding my quiet time so sacred.

While we are walking home from the bus stop and those little faces want to share their news from the day, I grapple with the shame I feel when all the voices all at once leaves me — already —  exhausted.

I am a minute hoarding, hermit who barks and becomes easily overwhelmed by her children.

These are just a few of my defects.

There are many (so many) more.

I have to constantly remind myself that it has to be part of the divine plan.

Because I am also fierce. No one messes with my people.

I am also brave, the one who jumps first.

I seek God every day in my way.

As much as I am domineering, I tell the truth . I forgive. In the end I don’t judge people for being flawed like me.

As much as I am a hermit, I am in love with life, adventure and the world.

And I crave deep, deep connection even if it means baring my soul to thousands of strangers like this.

I will teach my children to be who they are no apologies, to tell the truth, to stand up for themselves and for what is right.

We will have adventures because I can’t keep us away from them. It’s who I am.

I have to constantly remind myself that just because I don’t fit the mold of what I consider to be a perfect mother I am their mother for better or for worse.

I have to constantly remind myself that I am not a mistake.

I have to forgive myself over and over again.

I am who I am.

I am perfect, for everything I am and for everything I am not.

Thanks for witnessing.

P.S. Bergamot is the oil of self-acceptance. Apply to the heart.

{ 4 comments }

What They Don’t Tell You About Spin Class

by Amy on September 6, 2017

Post burn-cycle. Hot sweaty and feeling like a bad ass.

I remember the first ever time I walked into a Burn Cycle class.

My friend invited me to go with her…

“First time?” She asked.

“Yes…” I replied.

That’s when she raised her eyebrows and gave me an ominous look that said sarcastically, “good luck.”

Just getting on the bike itself seemed to require a good twenty minutes of awkward preparation. It needed to be adjusted to my height, then the special shoes needed to be clipped in, then someone had to go through all the commands – hands at two meant here, hands at three meant there, etc, etc.

All while attractive twenty and thirty somethings seamlessly did this around me in 30 seconds.

When everyone was on their bikes, the music started and the instructor turned out the lights. I sat on the bike and peddled like mad, happy that the room was dark so no one could see my flailing.

After a few minutes in the dark the instructor turned the lights to a low dim and I could see that everyone around me was actually up (as in off their seats) on their bikes.

“Are we up the whole time?” I hissed to my friend.

“Pretty much,” she mouthed back.

I had been up on my bike for a total of four minutes and my legs left like fire. I honestly had no idea how I would be able to do it for another forty one minutes.

Meanwhile the twenty something next to me seemed to be having a spiritual moment as the music blasted and the lights went on and off and the instructor yelled at us to “get it together” and “find it on the right,” whatever that meant.

I did manage to get through the entire forty five minutes, barely. By the end I was a sweaty mess.

Back home, my husband paused as I walked in the door. Seeing my clothes soaked through with sweat and my face still beat red even though I had been finished with my class for a half hour, he asked me:

“How did it go? Did you throw up?”

“How did it go?” I repeated his question, irritated.

“Did I throw up?” I asked, “Babe. I am forty four years old. I’m lucky I got out of there without shitting myself.”

Later that day I called the studio to purchase a ten pass.

“I’m so happy you enjoyed the class,” the spunky young receptionist chirped back.

“Oh no, I definitely did not enjoy the class,” I clarified.

“Oh,” she responded, confused.

“But I’ve never sweat so much in one forty five minute period so I figure it must be a good workout.”

“Ah,” she laughed. “Well I’m happy tp hear you are going to stick with it.”

Fast forward six months.

I’ve been sticking with it!

I stick with it about three times a week.

Nowadays I can totally hang with the twenty and thirty somethings in the front row. I know how to adjust my bike and I can “find it on the right, or the left,” no problem.

I can sprint standing up on my bike to the super fast beat like a true bad ass.

I’ve even had a spiritual moment, or two.

The point of all this my friend?

I guess it would be this:

Sometimes we have to do really hard things to know what we are truly capable of.

It might not be a BurnCycle class (God help you). It might be a difficult conversation you need to have. Or it might be something in your business, a sales conversation or a webinar or a class you need to teach. It might be that Shawn Mendes concert you son has been begging you to take him to. Or a similarly terrifying task you know you need to face.

Stick with it.

Because underneath it ALL …

​​​​​​​Whether you know it now or not…

You really are a BAD ASS.

But you’ll never get it unless you let yourself break a sweat.

Need a shot of courage? Try Wild Orange and Grapefruit on the solar plexus. Want to learn more about how essential oils can help with all this, email me to set up a 1:1 (new oil users only please).

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The Great Time Blocking Experiment

August 8, 2017

  God this is a boring topic. But I just have to because so many of you are suffering like I was suffering. It’s summer. The sky is blue. The kids are home. I just got the Tennis Channel. It’s so hard to get anything done! I’m definitely not as ambitious as I once was. […]

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Chronic Sleep Deprivation — I had no idea!

June 8, 2017

It is said that If you put a frog in boiling water, it will jump out. But if you put that same frog in warm water and slowly heat it to boiling, the frog won’t notice the danger and it will boil to death. For years I have had to get up multiple times at […]

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An Open Letter to Introverts (From an Introvert)

May 18, 2017

  It all started in grade school. I couldn’t figure it out. Why did all the other girls get so giddy over slumber parties?   I hated them.   Most of the time I would go anyway and pretend to be having fun until I couldn’t stand it any longer. Then I would either retreat […]

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14,000 Things

May 12, 2017

Yesterday Ron’s sister would have been forty years old. She was killed in a car accident when she was 21. I happened to be talking to a friend yesterday who has brain cancer. The meds are hard on her. “But you know what,” she said to me, “I am so happy to be alive. I […]

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When the doer cannot do

April 14, 2017

It’s Thursday. I have had the flu all week. And today I learned I have a bladder infection too. Bonus! I cancelled a tennis match, a podcast interview, three tennis lessons (two for me and one for my kids), missed an entire week of jiujitsu because I couldn’t drive the kids, skipped the Facebook Live […]

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God, Source, Spirit, The Angels, The Muses…

April 6, 2017

I am driving down Broadway Boulevard. It is Summer 2008. The twins are about six months old. Looking through the rearview window, I see them strapped into their car seats. As usual, Anthony is not happy. He is doing that thing he does before an all out crying fit. Alice is looking at me. Her […]

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Show Me A Successful Entrepreneur

March 10, 2017

Show me a successful entrepreneur in the service industry and I’ll show you a person who loves themselves enough, loves the work enough to let themselves fail. Somebody who is willing to get out there despite the possibility of bad hair, typos, toilet paper on the shoe, awkward exchanges (Them: Nice to meet you. You: […]

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How to be a Winner

March 2, 2017

Last week I beat a really good tennis player. In straight sets. 6-2, 6-2. If you don’t know tennis, I pretty much kicked her butt. “Wow, my back was really bothering me today.” This is all she had to say after the match. I lost to her a few months ago so I’m pretty sure […]

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Be here, now

February 24, 2017

A few nights ago, my husband said something mildly stupid that hurt my feelings. I am as soft-bellied as they come. I get my feelings hurt with an astonishing frequency. It is one of the many downsides of having a moon in Scorpio. Anyway…We were in bed, my back turned against him. I was convinced […]

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Stop Expecting Them to “Get” It: Why Some Partnerships Fail

February 9, 2017

“What’s on the agenda this weekend?” My husband asks. I open up my planner. “Battle of the books in the early afternoon Saturday, then Jazmina’s Quinciniera in the eve. Then Sunday is Janina’s birthday party at the pool.” “I’m not going to that,” He says. “But…” I answer. “I work all week and I don’t […]

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How to Think When You’re Overwhelmed

February 2, 2017

  I figured out the main theme of my book. This is the theme that informs everything. It’s the big “So What?” of the book. I was talking to my friend about it the other day. She asked me if I knew the theme when I started writing. “I haven’t wanted to start my book,” […]

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Saint Ron: Why the Truth Hurts (If You Let It)

January 27, 2017

“You should be canonized for putting up with her all these years.” This was a comment made about me to my husband. The same person I blocked to escape his poisonous text messages found a way to get to me through my husband. I won’t lie. When I heard that he said this about me […]

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5 Survival Tips When You #$%^& Up

January 20, 2017

I was recently invited to play on a bad-ass women’s tennis team. Wanting to make a good impression, I volunteered right away to practice doubles with a group of women. Got a babysitter and everything. On the night of practice, I got to the tennis club ten minutes early. Nobody there… “Strange,” I thought as […]

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Setting Boundaries with Setting Boundaries

January 12, 2017

For a long time my dream was to create a successful six figure, and then multiple six figure, coaching practice. After achieving the $200,000 a year mark I considered going for $500,000 a year. I created the business plan, I had the team in place, but I never made it. “Being an entrepreneur is the most lucrative […]

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We March

November 1, 2016

She is in a dark room, there is music on the other side of the door, and voices. She is crying and afraid. She doesn’t like being in here in the dark, alone. But no one hears her crying. Then the door opens and a man looks in. She can see the outline of his […]

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The Adult Brain of a Bullied Kid

October 6, 2016

We were on a bus, heading into Portland for a field trip. It was going to be a great day. We were going to try sushi for the first time and see China town. I was in seventh grade. Sitting on the bus, the girl next to me was leaning up against the window talking across […]

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35 Excuses Keeping You From Being Happy

July 27, 2016

No excuses. Just happy. My mom used to call me a “malcontent.” I hated it when she called me that. But now I see that she was right. I always had a reason why I couldn’t be happy. Here are a few excuses I used to make that kept me from being happy. Chances are […]

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You are five.

February 25, 2015

Who were you when you were five? When I was five… I loved flowers — I vividly remember the plants from my childhood – the sunflowers in my backyard, the rose bushes by the patio, the filbert orchards and the Oregon grapes with berries you couldn’t really eat. I loved to swim – that feeling […]

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Are You an Amazing Coach?

April 12, 2017

But so far you haven’t been able to figure out how to make a business out of it? Thank you to all of those who participated in the contest. Congratulations to Alicia J! Win a Scholarship to “Monetize Your Magic” (a $997 Value) The “Do it Yourself” version of my hands on, courage building success […]

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