Let’s talk for a minute about what love really is. Because it’s not this fluffy thing– though it certainly can be that at times. Love shows up in my life as a willingness to be real, to be vulnerable, to stay down, to weather the bad times and celebrate the good times. It’s a willingness to grow and appreciate. And did I mention it’s a commitment? Because it is. To love, to growth, to honesty.

Sometimes it feels good, and sometimes it just cuts right through all the fluff to the heart of the matter. And that’s what I’ve got today, so hopefully you’re cool with some straight talk.

Because here’s what I know:

Statistically there is NO WAY I should be where I am today. Life just WASN’T looking like a magical box of Lucky Charms, and there was *certainly* no silver spoon waiting to feed me my treasures.

My perspective is hard won.

And because I put in the time and did the work, there are things that I will NOT compromise on. These things are at the core of who I am. They fuel me each day when I lift my head, and are there when I lay my head down each night, thanking God for all that I have created.

I *did* not and *do* not make excuses for myself. And because I love you more than you know, I will NOT make excuses for you, either. It is simply NOT who I am.

I WILL hold you to a higher standard.

Because I see your light.
Because I see your potential.
Because I know what you could be if only you had the courage to let go.
Because I had the courage to do it to myself.
Because when I did, I experienced real miracles in my life.

Because when we do this for each other, when we hold each other to a higher standard instead of validating each other’s bullshit, do you know what happens???

WE RISE!!

So, I share with you my open door policy: which is that while you may not enter my life whenever you please, you are always free to leave and I will still love you the same.

Because if me being true to who I am hurts your feelings…know that I respect you, but I cannot NOT be me. Not for you, not for him, or her, not for my children…or for ANYONE in this world.

Because without my integrity, who am I? What world am I teaching my children, my friends, the people I love to live in?

How can I say live your favorite life and then compromise on mine?? To get ahead? To be accepted? To be liked? Out of fear that you will be gone?

No, that simply cannot and WILL not be my story.

Because the world that I want to see, that I *do* see, is the world where we meet our challenges head on. Where we rise above and discover the beauty that is waiting there for us.

The best of the best say “Be the change you want to see”. Which to me? Means living my favorite life. And I wish this for me, and for you, and for us all.

Love, love, love.