When I first started writing my blog, the focus was specific to sharing my lessons learned and journey as I supported my son through his mental health crisis and aftercare. I felt compelled to share and provide insight as to the pitfalls, the challenges, and the maze of process that came along with this experience. As I’ve revealed before, when I went looking for support and for people willing to share their stories and experiences with me, I hit roadblock after roadblock. The stigma was (and is) alive and well. People weren’t talking and I felt a bit like I was hanging off a cliff by my fingernails, which only added to the fear and darkness that surrounded my life during this time. I started writing because I wanted to assure others that they were not alone, and I felt that I needed to share even if my story only touched one family, one caregiver.
Over the years since this blog started, it’s gone through a number of natural transitions and evolutions (As have I). As my son came out of the crisis and began to rebuild his life, my focus shifted from the lessons learned during the crisis to the lessons that I had learned personally and the growth that I experienced as a result of these circumstances. My writing continues to focus on mental health and wellness intermingled with my story of grief, healing and overcoming obstacles to find my way back to a joy-filled life on purpose. How’d I do it? I’ll give you a hint, forgiveness has been such a key to all of this, but that is for a later post!
As I began to look at my life and my goals this New Year, I have realized that my story is much bigger than the mental health crisis that I crawled (and clawed at times) my way through. My story is about overcoming obstacles, real and imagined, and pulling myself out of the depths of despair to live my life fully. And not just live fully but passionately, living outside my comfort zone, and choosing to find fun and lightness in every single day. Could I have looked you in the eyes three years ago and said “I’m not only going to survive this but I am going to thrive as a result”. No way! But the beauty of my story is that I not only survived but am also thriving.
While this initially started as a way to help others experiencing the challenges of mental illness on their life and the lives of their loved ones, this has evolved into helping others to move through whatever their dark night of the soul is or has been, to heal from it and guide them to live a life that brings them more joy and satisfaction than they could imagine. I am so excited that I get to do this work everyday in both my coaching practice and in my advocacy services as well.
As this blog and my business continue to evolve, I will be expanding my focus to share both experiences and lessons learned directly related to mental health but also mental wellness and support for living our best life. I continue to be a mental health advocate and will not waver on my desire to shatter the stigma, blame and shame around mental illness. I will also continue to look at the bigger picture of my story and how its reach can extend beyond mental health. My goal is to support and guide those whose crises and challenges have created blocks that keep them from moving forward toward their best life and to share my first-hand knowledge that hope can bloom even in the darkest places.
Going forward, my blog will be expanded to include a more holistic view on overcoming challenges, moving outside the comfort zone, and finding the way out of the darkness and back into the light. My blog and website will include products and service announcements that support this greater mission as will my newsletter and I am hoping to bring in additional guest bloggers, workshops, training and opportunities for growth, healing and success.
Each of us has experienced times in our lives when we’ve felt Far from Paradise, my goal is to help others find their way back!
Hope you’ll continue to stay along for this ride! I’ve enjoyed sharing my lessons and story
Renee Vos de Wael says
I love how this grow and develop into a new journey! Great story 🙂