Some thoughts on ‘genuine’ & a new blog title

This week I’d like to give you a sneak peek at something I’ve been contemplating for quite a while.  I’ve been itching to have a name for the blog but I personally have been changing so much these days that I keep holding off, thinking I might change my mind and regret jumping the gun.  But at this point, what I’m about to share with you today is something that has felt pretty solid for me for at least a year now…so we’re just going to go with it!  Yup, I’m taking the leap, people.  Are you ready to jump in with me?

 

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About six years ago, during a different unbelievably challenging time while my dad was terminally ill (it still feels strange to hear that), I couldn’t read regular fiction because it all seemed too trivial.  I just couldn’t make myself care about characters who agonized and obsessed over clothes, boyfriends and careers.

 

Walking through Powell’s Books one dreary Portland afternoon, a book on the sale shelf caught my eye.  The title read Miracle in the Andes.  With a quick flip of the book and a glance at the blurb, I decided the book was destined to be mine.  I took it home, started reading and couldn’t put it down.  Inside, Nando Parrado shares the story of how he survived a plane crash in the Andes.  I found it inspiring and I learned things that helped me through that time in my life.  In fact, some of those exact lessons have become even more a part of who I am today than I ever could have imagined.

 

Near the end of the book, a specific passage seemed to leap of the page at me.  I was captivated by the depth to which it mirrored how I had been feeling in my own life.  So I wrote it down in a little notebook and have referred back to it many times since.  It goes like this.

 

“I had been thinking of the disaster as horrible mistake, as an unscripted deviation from the happy story of the life I had been promised.  But now I began to understand that my ordeal in the Andes was not an interruption of my true destiny, or a perversion of what my life was SUPPOSED to be.  It simply WAS my life, and the future that lay ahead was the only future available to me.  To hide from this fact, or to live in bitterness and anger, would only keep me from living any genuine life at all.  Before the crash, I took so much for granted, but the mountains showed me that life, any life, is a miracle.”

{I think putting a couple of the words in all caps might have been my doing.  That’s just how I wrote it in my notebook, though, so I’m not sure.}

 

At the time that I first read this I didn’t know anything about life coaching or what it would feel like to be free of the pain that all of our “shoulds” tend to cause us in life.  But deep down, something resonated in a big way.  Probably because that was the point when all of the tragedy and heartbreak that no one ever thinks is going to come knocking at their door started showing up at mine.

 

For most of my life I did my best to be positive in all circumstances, diligently learning everything I could from each experience and situation.  This is all well and good except for the fact that it turned out that most of the time, I was doing it to keep from acknowledging what was true for me and how I really felt.

 

But what illness has done for me, is help me to be genuine, to be honest with myself, and to accept who I am, where I am, what I think, and how I feel.  Because it was in my darkest moments, when enthusiasm felt like nothing but a distant dream, that I discovered I could always muster genuine.  It was at those times when trying to be happy or hopeful just seemed too much to ask, that I finally learned to simply let myself be and allow that to be enough.  And today, that is still the place where I find the inspiration and hope to pull me through.

 

This is why I’m planning to call the blog This Genuine Life.  A place that’s all about being genuine, living a genuine life, and making the most of the only future we have available to us.

 

There’s a part of me that thinks I should come up with something more flashy, more exciting.  But to this day, genuine feels right.  Genuine feels true.  And genuine feels like something I can always count on to create the space for all the beautiful things I’d love more of in my life, like love, joy, grace, abundance, and freedom.

 

I have so many thoughts about this new blog title and theme that I’m not even sure how to fully articulate yet.   But you can trust that slowly but surely, as they’re ready, I’ll share them with you.

 

And like I said, I’ve been hesitant to give the blog a name because I know myself and I know how I like to change things.  But by committing to being genuine, change is part of the deal.  So consider yourself forewarned. {wink}

 

Chomping at the bit to hear what you think!

Caitlin

 

P.S.  I’ll literally keep track of the yeas and nays that roll in because I appreciate having you as part of this community and I truly care what you think.  So leave a comment below or on the post over on Facebook.  If you love it, I’d be happy to know.  And if you think it would be a huge mistake that I’d regret forever and ever…please, DO tell me and help save me from myself! {wink}

 

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