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Let Life Happen: Love, Career and Other stuff

You know those moments in your life where you are just surrounded by goodness? You feel joy, exuberance, freedom?

The last few months have been exactly that for me. Actually, it has felt like 2022 has really been the year of Radiate. The radiance of joy, love, hope, empowerment, encouragement, and beauty. All of you who have been following along have been so supportive and incredible and sweet. Your words of encouragement have truly taken root in my heart and I just can't thank you enough. I would say even just the words "thank you" just aren't sufficient enough to describe how I feel toward those of you.

So, what has been happening over here? Quite a bit.

The intermingling of love and family has been much easier than I anticipated. I have never done this before. Dating with children was something that actually had me concerned. And I was curious as to how everything would play out if I found someone I wanted to build a life with and how bringing in the kids would work. Working in family law, I hear some horror stories, and I also hear from people who move on to new relationships and introduce the kids way too soon. I did not want to make the same mistake.

Thankfully, Bill had a very similar mindset. We waited 10 months to introduce ourselves to each other’s children. It was another couple of months before the kids met each other! Now, we spend quite a bit of time together. I am thrilled. His girls are the sweetest and I adore them. Bill doesn’t have a son so it is so cool to watch Sean and Bill’s relationship develop.

I don’t want to give off the impression that our way is the only way or the correct way. I do believe it was the best way for us. Navigating this road of love and family has been challenging, especially given that right now Bill and I live a little less than an hour from each other. So far, it is working. I am happy. He is happy. Everything is beautiful.

Madi had prom a couple of weeks ago. She looked so pretty and happy. How is it possible that I have a sixteen year old?! I still don’t fee like I am mature enough to be a parent. Hahahaha!

Work has been busy, challenging and an opportunity for growth for myself. I am incredibly grateful for my work. When most people hear that I work in family law, they assume that any type of promotion we do, we are encouraging divorce and to pit parents against each other so we can make a quick buck. I listen to call after call of different cases ranging from divorce to domestic violence restraining orders. It can be emotionally draining not just on our clients, but also for the attorneys and staff.

All that to say is I really do love my job. I am good at it. I am an empathetic individual and have been through a divorce myself. God does not make mistakes! I am grateful I had my BIL to help me (he is a family law attorney) here and there along the way. Navigating the legal issues would have been even harder. So I am glad to be able to help in a small way those who are going through the worst time of their lives. I get it!

About a month ago, though, I noticed that I was extremely exhausted and burnt out. I do not do a very good job of creating healthy boundaries for myself. I often allow my plates to get so full of wonderful things, that it makes it difficult for me to pare down or say no, and then I blow a fuse. I become more impatient. I don’t eat well. I don’t exercise. I don’t sleep. I don’t take time to the things that fill my soul. Then I wonder what the heck is going on with me.

I started reading the book Drawing The Line: How to Achieve More Peace and Less Burnout in Your Life.

Well, if that book just wasn’t meant for me!! Ha!

Last month was a very good reminder to take care of myself. I can still be a great mom, great girlfriend, employee and all the other hats I wear and still take time for myself. The world won’t end if I step away momentarily or if I say no. I despise disappointing people, but if I can’t care for my people because I didn’t take care of myself?

Then we would have a BIG problem.

I don’t believe that we as humans will ever be able to establish a perfect balance in our lives. Not every plate we carry will require the same amount of time, energy and investment at the exact same time. Sometimes, relationships, work and other responsibilities require more of us at that time. That is part of life.

What becomes dangerous for us is when we don’t set any healthy boundaries for ourselves. We abandon our own needs and wants for the good of everyone else. I often find myself saying no to earlier bedtimes, moments alone to write, quiet time, fun (even fun by ourselves!), creativity, physical care and exercise.

I abandon myself a lot. And I am working real hard to change that.

I guess you could say the month of May is to Radiate Self Love and Care.

I have been seeing a lot of push back on the self love movement, mostly because there is the risk of selfishness and self centeredness (Which is a real thing. It is out there, unfortunately).

I love the woman that I am. God created me. Instilled in me abilities, desires and talents and gifts that are unique to me alone. Why on earth do I continue to abandon myself because I am afraid of harming relationships around me or hurting the feelings of those I care about?

Why do you and I do that?

How about all of us choose this month to radiate love towards ourselves, fill our cups, and can we do it simply without the notion that we have to do this for others, but that we do so for ourselves?

Radiate Self love and Care, sister friend.

You are worth it.

Rooting you on,

Tiffany Rhea

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