Honest moment: I have been in a massive hole for approximately a month and a half. I have managed to peek my head out a few times for some laughs and happy moments, but I always seem to find a way to fumble back in. It hasn’t been pretty, and I haven’t been proud of it, but I think I’ve managed to safely climb out and move far enough away to ensure some much needed tranquility.
It’s been a year of rejection for me, and I have looked at each one in the wrong light. I have taken each “no” as a personal blow and let it chip away at my unwavering determination to be a spark of light for the world. While down in my hole, I allowed myself to believe that I am nothing more than average and that I have foolishly dreamed of a life beyond my capabilities. I know it’s terrible, but I feel that the only way to help someone else is to be completely honest because I am 100% sure that I am not the only one who has felt the wind knocked out of her sails after not getting something I ached for daily. I also am 100% sure that the story we tell ourselves is what determines our future, so we must write one that makes each day a joy to wake up for.
I owe this rejuvenation to someone whom I’ll likely never meet and who has no idea I even exist, but what I love is that this whole story is exactly what I dream my life will be. I want to spend this precious life living, writing, and creating stories that help ignite a passion for good in others just like this person. My hero? Elizabeth Gilbert.
You have likely heard of her. She is the author of Eat, Pray, Love and other famous books, has given wildly popular TED Talks, was a speaker for Oprah’s Life You Want Tour (jealous), and the list could go on and on. She is easily one of my favorite writers because she is real and connects with her readers as if we are her friends. In anticipation for her next book release on September 22, she has been writing daily Facebook posts with ideas from her upcoming book. I literally wait with baited breath for her daily messages because I have needed any light I could get as of late.
This past week, Elizabeth G. wrote a post about her terrifying/exhilarating experience of singing “Total Eclipse of the Heart” at a karaoke bar in NYC. She gave us a picture to prove her tale of putting herself out there and letting joy overcome fear. It touched me for some reason more than the other posts. She didn’t let her trepidation get in the way of living the life she wanted. It was what came next that brought me back to life though.
After many inquiries about video proof of this epic event, Elizabeth G. did exactly what I want to spend the rest of my life doing: She used her power for life changing good. She challenged her Facebook followers to raise $10,000 in three days for her favorite charity Blink Now. If this happened, she would not only match the total raised, but she vowed to head back to the karaoke place on Wednesday and sing the same song but this time record it for all of us to see. I loved every single piece of this, so I quickly grabbed my credit card and made a donation. It turns out, however, that I wasn’t the only one moved. She raised over $15,000 in one day.
I woke up the next morning to a post from her, inexplicably grateful of the generosity shown by her readers, and I was moved to tears. I was happy for her, but I finally was shaken from my funk because this proved the crazy life I dream of living is possible. Spending each day putting pen to paper and creating videos and stories that will move people to action is not just something in my head; it truly happens. Elizabeth Gilbert is living proof of the power of an irrepressible spirit. Her words and way of living changes lives. Maybe…just maybe…mine can, too. If I can, there is no doubt you can as well.
While I would give any unnecessary appendage (is there such a thing?) to head to NYC on Wednesday to watch this, I doubt I can make that happen, but I most certainly will wake up Thursday morning and check out Elizabeth G. staying true to her word and sealing a promise that means more than a song. It symbolizes a new life for the children helped by Blink Now and a magical piece of proof that there is undeniable good in the world. I can’t help but imagine a world where instances like this became second nature. Oh, what a world that would be.
Nothing, and I mean nothing, is out of reach. Write your story the way you want it to end. You’ll inevitably fall in a hole and need some time to navigate out of it, but the time spent in the dark will teach you the invaluable lesson of how to always find the light. Elizabeth Gilbert unknowingly threw a flashlight down to me, but I encourage you to find your own Elizabeth Gilbert when you can’t provide your own spark. We all have those moments, but what matters is that we get back up and keep moving towards the life you dream of. Maybe…just…maybe the exact life you dream of is waiting for you.
Go be great,