As I head into d-day on Friday, I’ve been thinking a lot about all the support I’ve gotten from my mom, my sisters, my grandparents and some very, very special friends. And I am focusing today’s post on my grandparents. They have been simply amazing since the moment they found out Pete and I were divorcing. From being very supportive and just THERE for me (in particular, during the holidays)…they have this way of silently showing their support in so many ways, and it has boosted me up and made me feel stronger, and happier.

They’ve also brought me closer to God, and introduced me to an amazing minister – Joel Osteen – a minster that has infused a new fire in me, helped me see things in a completely new light, and given me amazing perspective on the obstacles I have faced. Joel has this way of expressing various passages in the Bible in such “real world” terms that just hits me in the right way and is just so inspiring. For example, when saying goodbye to my grandparents today in Maine, they mentioned how touching and so “right” Joel’s message was today. I just watched today’s episode, and they were right, it was perfectly timed to where I am right now.

It was focused on facing obstacles head on, and not focusing so much on what you are going THROUGH, but focusing on what you are going TO. I love that!! He goes on to say that we need to take the hand we are dealt in life – whether it be a divorce, financial strife, or other hardships and WIN with it. Realize that you are strong enough, and you can move past whatever you are being challenged with, and keep that “never say die” attitude. To light a new fire on the inside of you, and become everything God created you to be. That’s so powerful, and it’s so empowering. And I would never have found Joel, or found my way back to God, if it weren’t in large part for my grandparents’ gentle influence. I am so lucky to have them, truly blessed.

In closing, Joel’s final statement that I’ve captured: “have victory in your DNA, don’t complain, don’t give up, because a new season is about to begin.” Couldn’t be closer to the truth.

One of my closest friends said that to me recently, and ya know…it really does sum up life, doesn’t it?  This week has sort of felt like an interesting twist in the obstacle course of life…I enjoyed a wonderful 60th anniversary celebration for my fantastic grandparents, experienced one of my good friends officially get divorced, I went on my very first date in 10 years (and actually liked it!), I hosted a little shindig for said divorced friend last night to glance back and look forward, and, I’m inching closer and closer to my own final divorce proceedings (if only Pete’s lawyer would freaking call him to come in to sign the papers that have been in her office for TWO WEEKS!!). And tomorrow? I kick off a fantastically fun Cathe Road Trip – basically a three day fit camp of FUN (you’ll see me and one of my sister’s in this clip from last year)!!! It’s been a great week and it’s not even Friday yet 😉

So, I say, put your helmets on and race towards that obstacle course…ya never know what’s around the next corner!

I’ll plan to post up my Quote Friday tomorrow, and then skip Saturday, and post a recap of the Road Trip on Sunday – hold yourselves, I know you are just on the edges of your seats in anticipation 😉

Reinvention, changing yourself. Taking risks, trying something new. Being uncomfortable in order to grow. What do all of these things have in common? Things I’ve been afraid of doing – stretching out of my comfort zone. Now, you may disagree and see my progression through this blog – and believe me, I know I have improved, but I’m sort of at a plateau. Between comfort and continuing to grow, so my quote(s) for today are two-fold. The first:

“You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself. That is something you have charge of.”

Now that I’ve overcome some of my baseline fears – living alone, being alone, starting over – pretty big baseline fears really, I have to continue my growth path and not just start to become stagnant and get into status quo mode. I have found that stress, fear and discomfort are my biggest barriers to facing new challenges head on, and continuing to reshape my path. And the following quote, from Joel Osteen (who I’m watching as we speak! Great sermon from this past weekend – so right, Gram!):

No matter what you may be facing right now, no matter how difficult things may seem, remember, God is in control of the winds. Just a simple shift can make a huge difference. Those same winds that are trying to defeat you, God can cause to change direction and be the very winds that propel you into the destiny He has in store for you!

It’s so easy to let difficulty and obstacles paralyze you, but what’s the point of that? Let it win you over, so you fall in defeat? Nope. Best way I am learning is to face it head on, no matter how scary. So, I’m going to do my best to continue letting stress and worry roll off my back and look for my next challenge in life. That’s what we’re here for right?

What else am I leading up to here, you may ask??

Why, my next phase of change…dating. Yup, that’s right…I am going to dip my toe in…may not dive in, may need a pair of swimmies, but I want to give it a try. I’m 10 years rusty at it, but I’m feeling ready to check it out, see who may pop up in my future. I’ll be writing a few more blogs on this particular topic in coming days, as I have come across a few of my fellow divorce bloggers that tie directly into this topic, but I think, I just think, I may be ready to take the next (baby) step. Eek? Exciting? Thoughts?

PS – hit 5,000 hits this week! Woohoo!

After this week’s decision and the mass of up and down emotions over what to do with the house, I thought the following quote from Joel Osteen that I pulled from Twitter was very fitting for this quote Friday:

“God would not have put a dream in your heart if He had not already equipped you with what you need.”

I see the use of the word “dream” here to mean a few things – aspirations (traditional use of the word dream, IMHO), but also trials and tribulations (obstacles to overcome). I feel like this week was really trying for me and somewhat of a test of my faith and I really had to dig deep to think about what I wanted to do about the house, and what was best for ME – not US, but ME personally. I am realizing now that all too often, I put Pete or US before ME in our relationship – intentionally or not, I didn’t ever put myself first, and I think there needs to be a balance there, and I am finding that now more and more. It’s amazing. So, I do truly believe that God doesn’t place goals or dreams or even obstacles to overcome within us, if we aren’t capable of overcoming or reaching that dream or obstacle.

With that – happy Friday all – and cheers to a fantastic weekend ahead.