Name: “Denise C.”
Age: Forty Plus & Fabulous
Los Angeles, CA
My Challenge: After four years of a custody battle with an embittered “Ex” I have struggled to regain custody of my daughter, rebuild my finances, and jump start my career, which was hanging on by a thread. I wanted to reclaim my power and more importantly regain my dignity. I lost everything, custody of my daughter, was evicted from my home, had my car repossessed, and “my booking” ratio plummeted. “Booking” is actor talk for how many times I’m hired, after my auditions.
My Approach: I gave myself permission to “feel,” to cry, scream and shout. I hit my rock bottom, not due to any vice, but a purging of the “veil” that I had worn for a lifetime. My secret “hidden veil” of pleasing everyone else, with a smile, even when I was suffering, by silencing my voice, diminishing my light and giving away my power. It all stopped when I “decided” enough was enough. I matter! I ceased being the push over and woman in “need” who would accept the help of anyone who offered which at times during my custody battle resulted in greater financial loss. I never bothered to ask, “what qualifies you to help me?” I healed the “little girl” in me, who was abandoned by her Mother and whose Father accepts neither responsibility nor accountability for anything, himself included. I decided to “woman up!”
My Inspiration: My daughter inspires me to push beyond my comfort zone, so that I may teach her to do the same. Her courage of walking daily in pure love and light, encourages me to be “fearless.” She also reminds me of the honor and gift that I possess in being her “Mommy.” I’ve been blessed to have a wonderful companion by my side on my journey. He listens, encourages, and provides me the space I need to “thrive”. He is my rock & another “bonus” from the Universe.
My Victory: Rebuilding hasn’t been easy, I’ve had to do a lot of work on myself to forgive myself for surrendering all of my “power” to my “Ex”… remembering that I am not “invisible”…recognizing that I matter and this custody battle ends, when I stop playing the game. I have a “choice,” we all do. Sometimes, being the “bigger person” doesn’t come because we have the great job, or never ending resources. Taking the high road comes when you put your child first and accept that the other parent will always be who they are, like them or not. Realizing and accepting that my “Ex” may “never change” has been my “Aha!” moment. I can still walk my journey with integrity.
My Lesson: Acceptance of my journey, in all of its beauty and ugliness. My experiences have taught me that I now have the power to “be,” “do” and “have” more. All of this has become a matter of “choice.” I’ve chosen to “thrive!” My circumstances no longer dictate my experiences. Life has become more and more amazing each day. I have an immeasurable sense of “freedom.” I’ve come to realize that my perceptions of betrayals were in fact precious gifts towards my growth and evolution.
My Prayer: Divine Creator, grant my the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the knowledge to change the things I can, the wisdom to know the difference, and allow me forgiveness and acceptance of myself, every step of the way.