Over the last 3+ years I’ve been on a wellness journey with the mission of getting back to myself. At the end of 2020, I felt very lost and defeated. The COVID-19 pandemic taught me that the world can be shut down in an instant and that my role as a dental hygienist can be taken away just as fast. Quite literally overnight my role as a dental hygienist was deemed nonessential and the state of Texas said I could no longer practice as a dental hygienist. I had spent the early years of my career networking, building, and diving deep into achieving accolades and memberships of all sorts just to have my identity truly stripped in that arena. There’s a whole other wormhole I can dive down there with being deemed “nonessential” – but that’s a story for a different day. I will say that I was very fortunate to have incredible bosses that were supportive and helpful during that time when dental hygienists could not practice. I was sent home with instructions to “hang tight” and just like that I was out of work and my identity as a dental hygienist was no more.
At home with two young toddlers and a husband who was working from home – I was incredibly overwhelmed. I lost myself. I leaned on my faith but many days were just spent in survival mode. I had no idea what my income would look like going forth and how we’d keep things afloat. I had no wellness practices – I had nothing for me.
I wasn’t active, I wasn’t well, and I fasted over 20 hours a day mostly because I didn’t have an appetite because I didn’t know what it felt like to truly want to be alive. I was also still recovering from delayed onset postpartum depression and anxiety and simply making it through every day was the goal. During this time I absolutely lost myself. In December 2020, I knew something had to change. The world was “returning” back to the remnants of normal we had left and I knew that if I didn’t change my life and change what was in my control then I’d likely lose it all.
In my quest to return back to ME, I found things that set my soul on fire. Things that taught me to show up in a whole new way. One important one was indoor cycling. Have you ever heard of the saying, “when the student is ready, the teacher will appear”? Well I was the student and indoor cycling was the teacher. HOWEVER, it was not without a lot of encouragement (i.e. invites) from my own mother. In fact, she’d invited me to this particular spin class of hers for months until I actually took her up on it. And even then, I didn’t return to my next class for a few months. I know, I know – so cringey LOL. And then in December 2020, the student was finally ready. I knew I was ready for change, to show up for me, and to commit to even the smallest of things – like a weekly indoor cycling class.
It didn’t take long for me to get hooked….but it was only once I was ready for change and felt worthy of more when I learned to show up for me in a whole new way. It was only when the student (me) was ready that the teacher (indoor cycling) appeared. One ride at a time, I found myself again – I found that light that had been buried and maybe even extinguished for so long. But it wasn’t just the movement. It was the uplifting community, it was the way I could sign up and look forward to something again, and it was the way I was able to change my relationship with food along the way. I no longer punished my body and restricted food, I no longer felt the need to revisit old and harmful disordered eating that had plagued my teens and early twenties. It’s like it unlocked something within me and awakened something (or someone) that had been there all along but somehow could never make it out.
As the months went on, I felt called to more and to pursue instructorship at the studio. And so that’s exactly what I did. A lot of forethought, journaling, conditioning, and intentionality went into that decision and I can say that without a doubt that pursuing instructorship has changed my life. I felt uniquely positioned to serve who I once was and knew the familiar feeling of being a new rider – my goal was just to continue to serve the community. Then I somehow became the go-to girl for all things wellness (mind, body, soul) – from my friends, to riders, to fellow dental hygienists, to IG friends I’d never met in real life, to even family members asking what I do for XYZ. I knew there was something more here and I had to figure out what that was for me and what that looked like for me and my family.
Enter the NASM Certified Wellness Coaching certification. It is the most comprehensive wellness coaching certification on the market. Seriously, I studied for like a full year before testing and earning my certification from NASM. Then I combined that with additional training, research, and implementation of mindset techniques, a nutrition certification, and intuitive eating principles to create a robust skillset that best serves the needs of my clients. And here we are – back to the beginning. When that young woman in 2020 couldn’t find and shine her light, now uniquely positioned to help others find and shine their own light. It’s why I embarked on my own journey; it’s why I finally returned to that spin studio; it’s why I kept showing up and eventually became an instructor; and it’s why I pursued more.
I kept getting the overwhelming urge that I was made for more. And I’m here to tell you that were made for more too – if you truly believe you are worthy of more, know that it is absolutely available to you.
-Stay Well, babe