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Shit happens. It’s inevitable. It knocks us down. It beats us up a bit. Makes us question who we are, what we are doing. The saneness of a choice. Moving….switching jobs. Getting married. Eating that plate of food or extra bowl of ice cream we most certainly didn’t need.

Or maybe, your life is floating along perfectly. You are idyllically happy. Everything seems to be going your way….and then it happens. Financial or physical tragedy. Your fiancée is having an affair. The job you love is being phased out as the company downsizes or updates it’s vision.

Suddenly, everything you planned, isn’t the plan. The steering wheel of your life has been ripped from your hands and you can no longer steer.  For most of us, it takes us right off our feet. It steals the breathe almost directly from our lungs. It’s scary as heck and we tend to flail a bit because this feels so out of control.

It throws us into an “and then” we never thought we’d see, let alone live in.

What the heck is an “and then?” It’s that moment where the friend that you are telling the story of your adventure called life keeps prompting for.  As they sit waiting for the next part, before it ever rolls off of your tongue,  they keep prompting you to  move the story forward because there is NO WAY that it ends where you are seemingly ending it.

That’s the most important part of your life.   See, for most of us there are days beyond what we see as our worst days. And it’s those days and how we live them that will define the story that we tell when it’s all said and done. What did we do when we were handed our “and then” ?  Did we lay on the floor on cry? Pout? End it?

Or did we take that sadness and turn it to fire? Did we take that moment to cry it out and then let that heavy feeling convert to the fire in our belly that will drive us forward to heights we never thought we’d reach because the other stuff felt so damn scary? My hope for you is that you will let that fear convert to fire.  That it will drive you on to achieve things so great that even you hadn’t quite gotten around to planning for them, let alone thinking you would be the one to blaze that trail.

As i sit and write to you, know that I haven’t figured it all out.  My life as I knew it crumbled two years ago amid affairs.  I had to take the time to realize that what he did wasn’t about me and what I deserved.  The fact that he took a torch to my financial life still has yet to be tackled, but I promise that it will be in the next 6 months.  You, my community, please hold me accountable for that.  It is scary, embarrassing, and so much more appealing to hide from this.  But it is impossible.  Without handling this, I will never reach my “and then”.  And that I promise is going to be be amazing.

Get out there and spite whatever has aimed to stop you and the happiness that you have deserved.  Grab your “and then” and run like Hell.  Make it amazing.  Grab everything you deserve and then some.  Write a story that you will be more than happy to tell at the gates.  Get off your knees…you deserve to stand on your feet AND HOLD YOUR HEAD UP HIGH.