This weekend I celebrated my 32nd birthday.

The day was actually just like any other Saturday - full of laundry, parenting and hockey. But it was still great!

Over the past week I've been thinking A LOT about my 32nd year. I've come to this conclusion! 

While my 32nd year has been one of the most challenging and heart breaking years of my life, it has also been one of the best. 

As we embarked on teenager-hood, in many respects, this year step-parenting became harder. Much, much harder. 

We lost my uncle, the figurehead of our family, to a courageous battle with lung cancer.

Our decision to have another "ours" baby has been a struggle involving a fertility specialist and the words "secondary infertility" 

And I found myself seeking therapy to deal some stuff from my childhood that kept creeping into my present day life.

Some real heavy stuff!

But amongst all of that, there has been a lot great. New memories, new traditions, new mindsets and new opportunities. 

I can honestly say I have never felt more confident, more supported, more loved in my life. I don't think I have ever been this content. 

I am unapoligetically myself. I am not ashamed of my flaws, my struggles, my real self! What you you see, is what you get! 

Amongst all the pain and suffering that came with this year, I learned to focus on what's truly important. I simply don't have time for the rest. 

This may sound too cliche, but life is too short to let distractions and things that are outside of your control steer you off your path. 

Every single one of us is going through our own heart breaking and challenging experiences. The key is in how you allow these challenges to affect your day-to-day. 

Like everyone, I haven't mastered this in full... but I have truly come a long way. 

I attribute this newly acquired "contentment' to a decision that I made... and continue to REMAKE every single day. 

A while back I decided I no longer have time for unnecessary b*llshit in life.
I decided I was going to take control!


(Despite popular belief - there is a lot of b*llshit to plow through)

As a busy mom, wife, stepmom and entrepreneur - I decided to look at my energy as a "valuable and limited resource" that I was not going to waste. 

When I made this decision, I really didn't give it much thought.

But the trickle effect... well, it's been game changing. 

This year:

1. I BECAME CONFIDENT IN WHO I AM

For the longest time I was worried about what people thought of me. I wanted people to like me. I worried what people were saying. I worried that they were talking about me. It was kind of ridiculous. 

I'm not sure when it happened, but at some point this year I realized that I no longer care. Like REALLY don't care. 

I am me. This is who I am. An open book. A outspoken, straight shooter, who wears her heart on her sleeve. 

If I'm not your thing. That's cool. Everyone doesn't have to like everyone! 
 

2. I GREW SOME LADY BALLS

This year I got very clear on what I want in life and decided to just go for it.

I grew a pair and boy has it paid off. It's amazing how much time I used to waste waiting for opportunities to come knocking, or people in my life to figure out what I wanted.

People aren't mind readers. Personally and professionally, if you want something in life, you have to put your big girl pants on and ask for it. The worst thing that can happen is you'll get a no, and you have to find another way. 

If you're not going to advocate for yourself, no one else will! 
 

3. I {WO}MANED UP & STARTED TO WORK THROUGH MY B*ULLSHIT 

We all have baggage. Whether we choose to believe it or not,  we all have crap from our past that creeps it's way into our day-to-day lives. For the longest time I didn't want to admit that things from my past still bothered me. I didn't want to appear weak or like I cared. I wanted to present as strong, resilient and like I have it together. 

But when you really think about it, that's not being strong. That's being weak. 

Truly acknowledging and working through that baggage... that's real strength! This year I decided seek out the type of support I always recommend that other people seek out - and has been the most eye opening and freeing experience ever. 

I truly do believe that everyone would benefit from attending a few therapy sessions here and there. It's like getting a regular oil change so that your car runs more efficiently. My only regret is that I didn't start sooner! 
 



So there you have it - a raw & real recap on my 32nd year!

In case you missed it on Facebook and Instagram this weekend - On Saturday, I raised my glass to every single one of you!

In the past few weeks I surpassed 10K followers on both my Instagram and Facebook Pages - which is a goal I had set for 2017!

In case I don't say it enough, I appreciate each and every one of you. Every like, every follow, every comment, every time you click on my website. - This KICK-ASS Community is making my dreams come true!

Somedays I have to pinch myself and ask - is this real life?!

To here's to this community and seeing where this next year will take us! 

We popped some champagne to celebrate this weekend - This photo was captured JUST after Darren almost blew off my nose with the cork!  CHEERS!!!

We popped some champagne to celebrate this weekend - This photo was captured JUST after Darren almost blew off my nose with the cork! 

CHEERS!!!

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