Sometimes, the hardest things in life can be our biggest teachers. Sometimes something can seem like a negative, we perceive it as a problem, something bad in our lives… but once we work through it, often times on the other end, it is actually a positive. Through being a guide at our adventure retreats, I have learned so much about myself, about life and I have grown in ways I can’t even begin to describe. I feel so lucky to be able to facilitate these platforms for such tremendous growth, to encourage synergy, to support people as they break down their own barriers and grow from a safe place. Through all of this, while being a facilitator to transformations and growth, I too have been through a transformation. This is a story I do not share often. I don’t really like to share it because it was something I had to work through, something that I struggled with, something that dipped me down near to depression and tormented me for awhile. But if I have learned anything through guiding and being a part of these incredible retreats we have created… it is that our darkest moments can be our greatest teachers, and that although in the moment, something might feel like the worst thing possible… on the other side, there is almost always a silver lining. Let me share…
I was in a relationship with someone for over 3 years. At the beginning, I felt like this was my person. That he and I were going to be together for the rest of our lives. But people grow and people change, and things can happen in a relationship to drive two people apart. For over a year I struggled with my relationship. I fought at the deep gnawing inside of me that told me it wasn’t right. I didn’t even reach out to my friends and family about my struggles because I was too afraid that if I changed my mind and stayed, my friends and family would never forget what I had told them. It wasn’t that anything was wrong with him, and even now I can’t say anything bad. We had a beautiful time of our lives together and he introduced me to so many things that I love. But fundamentally, we were wrong. We were two very different people, living two very different paths and the farther we each walked down our paths, the farther we drifted apart. At my absolute breaking point of our relationship, a pivotal event occurred in my life. I registered for the Coastal Challenge in Costa Rica with three of my friends.
As our training carried on through the winter, my time on the trails increased, and I found myself finally sharing my discontentment, my unhappiness and my fears. I decided that my trip to Costa Rica was going to be my final chance to decide what to do about my relationship. I would be spending a lot of time running by myself and therefore would have a lot of time to think. And then I met Eduardo. I wasn’t in any position to meet someone. I didn’t even want to meet someone. I wanted to move on from my current relationship, work on myself and spend sometime really figuring out who I was and what I wanted from life. But life is a funny thing and it doesn’t always work out the way we imagine it will. I didn’t know that I was standing face to face with my now husband. I would have had no idea what journey I was embarking on the moment that I met him. And although the voice inside me said it was wrong to leave someone for someone else, I just couldn’t listen. In my mind, I had already checked out so long ago that it just felt like a natural progression of my life.
And thats when the hardest and most beautiful months of my life began. While I was falling head over heals in love with my now husband, I was also plagued with the guilt of breaking someones heart, of leaving someone for someone else. I let it eat away at me, instantly questioning whether I had made a mistake, whether I should have stayed to keep that person happy over my own happiness. I went through a really hard time. I even questioned whether I would fully be able to love my new partner if our relationship caused so much pain for someone else. But as time went on, and the wounds healed, and I let go of my guilt and pain for what happened, I realized this moment was the most important part of my life. It literally was the catalyst to the most incredible change I could ever have imagined in my life. And once the dust settled, and my ex was able to work through his pain, he also found the woman of his dreams. Although the process to get to where I am now was painful, and at times I questioned whether it was worth it… it was a necessary part of my life and it taught me so much about myself and what is worth it in life. The lesson I learned is that this is our life, and we have one chance to live the life we want and sacrificing your own happiness completely for someone else is not worth it. Love yourself and be complete on your own before you love someone else. I know I wouldn’t be where I am now today if I hadn’t gone through this process, worked through it and come out on the other side. The most painful process of my life, actually ended up being the most beautiful. I have never been more happy with the life I am living and I feel so lucky every day.
In life, there are going to be moments that are hard, there is going to be pain, there are going to be times that you question what you have done wrong or even if you deserve what is happening to you. But things have a way of happening for a reason… and if you allow yourself the time to go through the process, you might come out on the other end a happier person.