In 2005 I decided enough following my head, I was going to follow my heart and see what happens. What a journey it has been. Has it been easy? Not always. Has it been worth it? Absolutely yes.
Following my heart means I make the choice to live by my rules (within the law, of course), my authenticity, and by what matters to me. To some, I suppose that may sound selfish. But as I’ve travel this path, I realize it is more selfish to not follow your heart. When you follow your heart and live into who you truly are not only do you give others permission (and hopefully courage) to do the same- but you also give the gift of the real you to those around you.
Following my heart means I may look and seem “different” to some of my family and friends. But truth be told, this was me all along, I was just finally owning and living into that ME. It was darn lonely at times, and quite scary too. But the more I am me, the more I don’t want to go backward, I have to keep moving forward. There were times, and yes, still are, but further time in between now, where I think it might be “easier” to just go with the flow. But you know what I realized? No one else lives inside this head of mine, or this heart of mine. If they are not happy, then I am not happy. That does me no good, nor those around me.
Imagine a world where everyone felt confident to follow their heart. I imagine it as a world of complete peace. Society can put so many expectations on us and we fall into that trap and drown out the message of our hearts. Our hearts won’t scream out to us- it will just be a slow, dull ache and we will feel not quite ourselves. But the heart being the way to your soul, can only be heard if you sit in silence and allow the message just for you to come forth.
As I move into my new chapter with Frankie who will soon retire from her work as a therapy dog and visiting schools (mid summer), I have felt very uncomfortable at how this feels. I’ve had to remind myself that it is perfectly OK to be still, and listen to my heart for the next step in my journey. I’ve come to realize that I’m being given another gift– a time of soaking in every moment I can with it just being Frankie and I… and her special time with John and Kylie. I’m being given a gift to concentrate my full efforts on my new book and give thought to a next book. Though I’ve shed a few tears (which come at the most unexpected times) about closing this last chapter, I find more and more peace melt into my heart. And I think tears do truly cleanse the soul to make room for another blooming on the path of our journeys.