Project:Unleashed

As the third anniversary of The Hubs’ passing approaches, I feel an ache in my bones. But it’s not what you may think.

I’ve always felt apprehension at impending milsetones, a sense of doom that grew increasingly intense as the date drew closer. Usually the anticipation is worse than the actual day, but knowledge of that doesn’t lessen the pain and anxiety. As August came to a close this year I began to feel this familiar ache. September loomed in front of me like a black hole I knew I would fall into, destined to lose myself in the hurt.

But something changed.

A combination of factors have aligned — daily alone time to focus on myself, a motivating conversation with a close friend, an opportunity to get away for a weekend, a granted prayer for acceptance — and resulted in an evolution of attitude that I need so desperately.

So when September 1st arrived, I found myself dancing sweatily in the sun to an awesome band and making a promise to myself to LIVE. Not just get by, survive, and tread water waiting for the ‘next thing’ to come along… but to LIVE, NOW, in THIS moment. And live with ABANDON.

I am tired of being numb, of floating through day-to-day, of just taking care of responsibilities and being serious all the time. Yes, I’m a woman who is organized and professional and can take care of business. Yes, I am Christian lady who possesses grace and dignity. Yes, I am mother who is responsible and loving and runs her household well. But where did the fun girl inside go?

A piece of her died that fateful September day, and now it is finally time for me to discover all the pieces of her that are left. The funny girl who snorts to stand-up comedy, the one who dances wildly with a cup of coffee in her hand at 9AM on a Thursday, the chick who can throw down a few beers and belch with her friends, the passionate wild-at-heart woman who sings at the top of her lungs and does random cartwheels and is full of witty jokes? For so long I’ve felt like that was the ‘old me’. There has been a subconscious separation in my life of ‘Before’ and ‘After’. But who says those two people can’t be reconciled? I am both. I am old. I am new. I am ALIVE. And damn it (sorry Mom), I need to OWN IT ALL.

So this year I am not living September as I usually have. Do I still miss The Hubs? Will I still honor him on the 12th? Is it still painful to think about the events that transpired in this month three years ago? Absolutely, on all accounts. But instead of wallowing this month, I am choosing to move forward. Instead of re-burying him all over again this month, I am choosing to be re-born. For him and the life he doesn’t get to live. And for me and the life I still have to live.

I am calling this discovery phase of my life Project:Unleashed. Because that is what I am doing — I am unleashing myself from everything that has kept my soul bound and tight: pain, loss, fear, grief, apathy, expectations, guilt, fear, numbness, did I mention fear? I will no longer be kept down by these weights, instead I choose to release them and discover the joy of the vibrant girl who will be unbound.

If there is anything in your life holding you back, weighing you down, or dampening your spirit, will you join me in Project:Unleashed? Let’s discover what we hold inside, let’s let our inhibitions go and free the possibilities inside of us. Let’s be unleashed.

I’ll be posting regularly about my journey — from short posts about what I did during the day to long posts about discoveries I make — picture posts and challenges to conquer and inspiring music. If you’re joining me in the movement, grab the Project:Unleashed button out of the sidebar and post on your blog too. Be sure to link back so I can encourage you along your journey! <3

September, you will not defeat me.

Only rainbows after rain
The sun will always come again.
It’s a circle, circling,
Around again, it comes around again.

Dana

Erin this is beautiful!!! I agree, why can’t we be a little of the old girl and a little of the new girl? If I blogged, I’d join you, but I too am working on being “unleashed”. I call it my Living out Loud life. I really want to get to that point of totally fully living, I’m close, but still am holding back a bit because I am scared. Way to live September alive and beautiful!

This is so gorgeous.

Cathy

Erika, I am right behind you, heading towards the 3 year date. Wanting so much to move on and get back into life and living, but held back but all that was supposed to be and isn’t. Thanks for inspiring me to go on, as you have.

I am joining in on this project. Starting today. Love your blog!

I’m in. Help me start…

[…] process of Project:Unleashed is teaching me so […]

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