I have a love-hate relationship with the news. I like to be informed about what’s happening in my community and throughout the world, but with the need-to-know information comes everything else. Natural disasters, mass shootings and other violence galore. The only thing that surprises me anymore is that I’m still surprised to find out another tragedy has happened.
My son Noah is only two so he isn’t aware of the horrors that occur in this world. We don’t have to sit down and have those hard conversations…yet. But that time is coming. How will we handle it? I honestly don’t know. But what I do know is that I need to live my life as an example, so I intend to FITE everyday to make his and my world better. I refuse to wait for the “right” time to live. My time is now.
- Face your fears: Acknowledging fear isn’t a weakness, it’s a strength. If we never acknowledge what we’re afraid of, how can we ever overcome it? A couple years ago an old friend messaged me and said she was going to audition for The Voice. I was so excited for her and said I would go along for support. She encouraged me to audition, too. I immediately felt nauseous and said no. But then she asked one question, “What have you got to lose?”I went to that audition for myself, but also for my son. I don’t want Noah to be afraid to take a long shot. I don’t want him to be afraid to try something because he might fail. Fail or succeed, life is about experiences. If I want that for him, I have to do it for myself. I didn’t make it, but that turned out to be one of the coolest experiences of my life and one I will always be proud of.
- Immerse yourself: There is strength in numbers; find your people. One really is the loneliest number. I feel so much stronger when I surround myself with positive people, especially when we’re all working toward a common goal. Whether it’s raising kids, working out, volunteering or just enjoying a nice glass of wine, it’s the people around me who make the difference. No one can do it alone, and why would you want to? Get involved with people, groups and organizations that you believe in and that make you happy. Seeing people united and working together gives me great hope for the future.
- Take the trip: Book your flight, gas up the car or dust off the road bike. Just go! My husband and I are taking a trip to Las Vegas in a few months. We’ve been there many times before, but after the mass shooting that took place on Oct. 1, 2017, at the Route 91 Harvest music festival held on the Las Vegas Strip, I admit that I’m a bit apprehensive about this trip. My senses may be heightened a bit when we first get there, and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous, but Las Vegas is a special place for my husband and I. He proposed to me at Mandalay Bay, we spent our honeymoon at the Bellagio and we have celebrated numerous anniversaries on the Vegas Strip. I refuse to let anyone or anything prevent us from making more memories in our happy place. Flight is booked, babysitter is scheduled and I have my sparkly heels ready to go!
- Emulate your kids: Be the person you’re teaching your kids to be.Noah inspires me every day with his imagination, warmth and innocence. He freely delivers smiles and greetings to people we meet, laughs with his whole body, and dances like no one is watching. His carefree spirit is infectious, and I know I can take a few tips from him. Run, play, sing, laugh and dance until you create the life you want to live and become the person you want to be. Noah is where I get my confidence to be the best mom I can be, no matter how scared or sad I am.
We will all face challenges in the future. We will feel fear, sadness and anger, but I wish you all the strength to persevere and triumph. I wish you peace in your souls, love in your hearts and hope in your lives. For where strength, peace, love and hope live, life will prevail.