I celebrated myself last weekend.
See, when I got lost in the midst of my everyday life, I forgot what it meant to care about something personal. I lost pride in the things that matter solely to me. Sure, I am incredibly proud of my children, and my husband, and my winter guard, and my employer, and just about everyone in my life. But nowhere lately has there been much that has brought me individual joy or feeling of accomplishment.
I have always said this is the one problem with my career industry. As a communications professional by day, my job is to make others look good. I’m writing speeches and articles, with my name never attributed to anything. I’m making sure conferences and meetings happen without a hitch, while wearing black to blend in with the background off-stage. I feel like people look at me with three heads when I tell them the many experiences I have had in my career, simply because no one thinks about preparation it takes for big news to be announced or for events to be staged. In many ways my resume has been to remain invisible and get shit done – which is why I think many in my profession get burnt out early on in their careers.
It’s never about me. It’s always about someone else. And that’s the way I chose it.
I’m the perfect personality type for my job. I’m an enneagram 3w4. I’m driven, and loyal, and hardworking… but I’m also selfless to a fault sometimes. It may be my fatal flaw.
This spring, I finally made something unapologetically about me. Little did I know, it would become the foundation of my journey toward self love and care.
In June I signed up for the 500 Festival’s Indy Virtual Challenge, where I pledged to complete 500 miles before December 31. I had just started my “health” journey, so the fact that I thought I could even possibly finish 500 miles this year seemed asinine. I had gained almost 30 lbs. in leftover “baby weight” and quarantine wine. Yet I paid the $60, convinced two girlfriends to join me, and off I went on my Peloton – averaging 5-10 miles per day.
I made my rides a priority for four months. I started dreading them less, and needing them more. There were many nights where I would finish a workout, dripping with sweat and tears, and I would feel like I could tackle another day. I can’t explain it, but that bike has been my therapy in the form of quality time with my body. I found a piece of myself there.
When I finished my 500 miles last week, I had a serious moment. To the point where my husband had to come check on me, because I just couldn’t contain myself.
I was just so damn proud OF ME.
No one made me do this. No one could help me (outside of the amazing support I received from dear friends and family). I did this 100 percent for me, and that is something that doesn’t usually happen in my life. To celebrate my girlfriends and I had a photo shoot with our swag, and an afternoon ice cream date. These pictures, and what they represent, mean so much. To me, I look confident. I look healthy and fit. I look… dare I say it… a little like myself?
Being proud of YOU is important for your soul and your growth, and is something that I have lacked until recently.
It’s okay for something to be all about me.
It’s okay to be selfish every once in awhile.
It’s okay to put my name on something I worked hard on.
It’s okay to scream my accomplishments from the rooftop.
It’s okay to be proud.
What makes you proud of you today?