Enlightenment is growing all the time. It is not something that happens once and is then complete.” -Rhich Nhat Hanh
A million steps backwards — that’s what it felt like.
I sat in my Chicago hotel room, picking at the room-service Caesar salad. My appetite had all but diminished the past two days, my mind spinning in a near-constant state of motion since Saturday. Even the change of scenery with a work trip this week hadn’t done anything to calm my thoughts.
I’d spent the last five years moving on from the experience and fall-out with my former friend and idol, Maya. Most of that time had unfolded within the beautiful confines of the UNC-Chapel Hill campus — I’d thrived there, “found myself” in so many ways, along with a host of new friends and incredible experiences.
The move back to Madison following graduation a year ago had certainly brought considerations of being back in the place I’d originally wanted to move away from; yet the past 12 months back “home” had been so different than before college — I’d started a new job, made new friends, traveled around the country. I wasn’t the same person who had left, and therefore the city I came home to hadn’t felt the same either…
With a single, unexpected encounter, my thoughts had been pushed back into a place I’d vowed never to return to. Maybe if I’d had time to prepare, maybe if I’d had any idea it could happen then and there; maybe if I’d spoken confidently instead of stumbling over my words, my brain power freezing with the surprise run-in. It was as if nothing had changed — I was back to being the lost little girl, feeling inadequate, insecure… uncertain.
10 years ago this September, I sat in that hotel room wondering — asking anyone out there listening — how to reconcile the past and present. I didn’t want to run from what had happened — heck, I couldn’t run from it anymore. But how could I acknowledge the experience and still move forward in my life?
Earlier this year, I had an idea for a blog post about the North Carolina basketball team’s latest NCAA Championship. I also had a couple ideas for posts stemming from my recent European travels (per usual). And then, as it often happens in the life of Megan, someone said something — in a training class, then in a random conversation — that got me thinking deeply (I love those moments!) The output? Rather than a few piecemeal posts these past few months, I’ve created 10 related blog posts leading up to a 10-year anniversary that deserves a marking — not necessarily due to a celebration, but due to it’s relevance to the question I’ll be addressing within these posts:
How can you use your story to propel you forward?
Get ready for the Summer Blog Series!
To add some additional “umph” to the posts, I’ve decided to pair them with a contest: For every “share” of a post you make on social media, you will be entered into a drawing. The Grand Prize is a $25 Starbucks gift card along with both of my books (signed by yours’ truly of course!). Second and Third place will each get to pick one of my books, and I’ll send you a signed copy as well.
How do you share the post and get credit for it? Simple: Simply click share on the post, and then comment on the post with your name. I will “like” your comment to show you I’ve counted your entry. Not following my Facebook page? You can find the link here!
Why the extra umph you ask? Well, in case you haven’t noticed, my goal with my blog posts and my books is to reach people — Inspire. Impart. Impact. The more traffic to this site, the more blog posts read, the more books purchased or downloaded — it all equals more opportunity for me to do that. So let me say Thank You in advance for helping me achieve my mission.
There are 11 posts including this one — if you’re counting, that’s 11 opportunities to share and enter to win. To keep us all honest (and motivated), I’ve even included a schedule for the posts below:
Summer Blog Series (2017):
Curveballs & Championships: July 10
Choosing Happiness: July 17th
Traveling Through Life: July 24th
A Flutter of Wings: July 28th
Living Your Passion: August 7th
Carolina-fied: August 15th
Arizona Enlightenment: August 24th
Drinking from the Happy Canyon: September 6th
Intellectual Honesty: September 12th
It is Well with My Soul: September 22nd
Of all the things I’ve struggled with over the course of the last several years, it is the question of reconciling past and present — “letting go” while owning what’s made you who you are today — that has seemed the hardest nut to crack. I’ve addressed the theme several time in each of my books, but I believe these next 10 posts help shed even more light on it.
I hope you’ll read these posts; I hope you’ll share them with your friends and family; But above all else, I hope you’ll find something in them you can take away — a lesson, a feeling of inspiration, an understanding of the ebbs and flows of life and how to meet them in a more mindful, peaceful manner.
Keep an eye out for the first post this coming Monday and get ready to read and share!