My reset was given to me by the universe and hand-delivered to me by my now ex-wife.
Five years ago, my wife of almost 11 years casually uttered the words, “I’m no longer in love with you, I don’t want to go to therapy and I’m moving out.” The person I had built my life with, had adopted two boys with, and who had encouraged me and supported me to quit my amazing job as the VP of Education and Training for a non-profit in order to become a stay-at-home mom had just told me we were done in the same way that someone would say, I’m heading to the store, do you need anything!
I was in shock and terrified and did I mention, in shock. So I curled up into the fetal position and I cried. I called out to my village and they circled the wagons and cared for me. There is only so long I could stay paralyzed by fear of the unknown before I realized that my kids needed me to be fully present, so I did what at the time seemed like a wise idea. I decided that when going through something scary I should probably do something scarier to take my mind off the first scary thing!
That was in truth, terrible advice, but it worked. I did that one scary thing I didn’t think I could do — STAND UP COMEDY. As I walked up the stairs to the stage, I honestly thought I would die, right there, front and center, in front of people I didn’t know because I was too scared to tell more than two people to come watch me. I prepared myself for what I believed would be the impending pass out, throw up, poop my pants or heart attack. But a funny thing happened after my very very first three-minute set — I was still standing and none of the things I thought would happen did. More importantly, the Phoenix that lived deep within me started to stir and from that moment on I have continued to experience the aftershocks of a powerful reset.
Comedy taught me the power of sharing by way of storytelling. I realized that I was more a comedic storyteller more than a stand up comic. From stand up comedy I decided to try my hand at producing comedy shows and created two shows that focus on using comedy to educate people on the topics that society would rather have us not talk about. Because the belief that everyone deserves honest education lives in my heart and the power of using comedy as a tool to engage people lives in my bones, it seemed a natural fit to combine comedy and education to create ways to engage people in difficult conversations.
There is laughter in everything. Even the darkest spaces contain some light. Yes, it’s true we sometimes have to dig pretty darn deep to find that small nugget of humor, but it’s there, waiting to be found. If we change the lens we use to view the world, we can find those nuggets of humor all around us.
I realized last year that I had stories that needed to come out and a five-minute comedy set wouldn’t do. I created a one-woman storytelling show and took these vulnerable stories to the stage, so that not only I could finally share them in front of friends and strangers, but so other people would hear them and hopefully realize that, Oh snap, I feel the same way, or, that also happened to me and if she’s ok, then I guess I might be ok as well!
I then realized, that while I love comedy and storytelling and doing emcee work, I wanted to find a way to fully support my family while combining these skills AND working for the organizations that I care so deeply about. In 2016, I went to Auctioneering school (yup, it’s a thing) to become a licensed auctioneer in the state of Colorado. I am now living a life that I know without a doubt would never have been possible if five years ago, my ex-wife didn’t utter the words, “I’m no longer in love with you, I don’t want to go to therapy and I’m moving out.”
The lessons I have learned have been intense, painful, exhilarating, terrifying, joyful and so very empowering. The lessons along this reset path have triggered my deepest fears and caused them to rise to the surface. The reset has pushed me to slay those fear-based dragons that lived deep within my being and were content just hiding as they gnawed away at my ability to access my true potential and therefore grow as a woman. Slaying dragons is not for the timid. It’s messy and at times bloody and brutal. Dragons seem to love the journey post reset, so they are there, always waiting and need to be dealt with if one wants to thrive.
I now know without a doubt that when I do what I’m supposed to be doing, when I’m accessing my gifts which I never knew existed prior to five years ago, the Universe will take care of me and my family.
I now know that humor can be found in everything and when we use humor as a way to break down barriers and engage in challenging conversations we can bring people together and encourage them to open their hearts and their minds.
I now know that sometimes the one thing that you are so sure will destroy you is the exact thing that will create the most beautiful, positive and life-changing reset.