I turned fifty in February. I read The Holstee Manifesto for the first time a few years ago and oh how it resonated with me! However, at that time I wasn’t ready to change things yet. It has reappeared now and again in my life over time and today I saw your request for “My Life” stories. So here is mine- The past year has been one of tremendous change for me. In many ways it seems as though things are, I am, coming full circle in my life. I have worked full time for more than ten years now in healthcare. I started out working with patients, mostly elderly, helping them to regain skills or learn new ways, and to accomplish daily self care. I loved it! It was like having a multitude of Grandmothers and Grandfathers and having the knowledge and ability to help them maintain their dignity. I was so grateful to be blessed with those opportunities. With years of experience I grew into an opportunity to help manage a large department. Working in management I was a step further away from the well-filling work of being one-on-one with the patients. While it was an opportunity to foster some change for the better and to support several other talented and caring therapists in doing their good work, the healthcare “system” is often unforgiving and the limitations and expectations therein create an environment that is less than nourishing. Though I had fought long and hard for the promotion, the way in which I approached my job (long hours, stuffing frustrations, no time for relationships, little joy, not listening to my inner voice etc) was not a healthy one, and in a couple of years I became ill, very ill. I was out of work for six weeks last spring, and in that time I began some real soul searching. I began looking for right livelihood.  I wanted work with integrity that helps to heal, that comes from the heart, that is of service, and that makes this world a better place. I prayed to be guided there and I also revisited the Holstee Manifesto. I made lists of options, of ideas, and I prayed some more. As I worried and wondered over what to do next and how, I was offered a new position at the same company I had been with. It was another management level position, in a different department (farther removed from the patients); something entirely new. I really wondered if this could be the next right thing. Was I really supposed to continue working there? I committed to myself to try it for three months and check back in with myself. I started in July. In short order I knew that it was not the next right job for me. But it may have been the next right thing, because it led me to where I am now. This job and circumstances associated with it revealed more to me than I could have imagined and I learned a lot about myself and others. I tried my best to get the job done, but before the three months mark I was obviously unhappy. Events beyond my control forced my eyes and heart wide open and I knew I had to go. This time I didn’t worry over what was coming next. I knew what I wanted to be guided to and I knew what I no longer wanted any part of. By the end of October I made up my mind to resign. In September I became a Grandmother and we had just moved to a new home, one I had lived in eight years prior during another time of major change. I have thought of it since that time as the house where my life began to be saved. When I picked up the keys this past September, as the realtor drove off, I stood keys in hand and a double rainbow appeared in the sky. I felt sure I was on the right path, and that this move was part of it. In November, my sweetheart had to have surgery and then a second unexpected surgery the following week. He would be out of work for weeks, maybe months. But still I knew deep in my core that I had to resign. My last day was at the end of December. The following week I began spending Fridays caring for my beautiful Grandson, whose parents “just happened” to find them selves in need of an extra day of daycare as of the first week of January. I became a Certified Reiki Practitioner in January and am working on building a private practice. For my birthday in February I attended a memoir writing workshop as a gift to myself upon turning fifty. My sweetheart returned to work in February too, but we had been able to spend precious weeks together in the interim, and he recovered well from his surgeries. In March I began working part time one on one with patients again at a local hospital/nursing facility; and in April I became a trained Doula. I have a garden again. Oh, and have I mentioned the Hula Hoop? Another fiftieth birthday gift to myself! As I explore what my passions, My Life is weaving itself into a beautiful quilt of opportunities to be present for service, for growth, for relationships, for joy & for Right Livelihood. This is my life.

Love to write?

Every month we select at few writers to help us explore what it means to live a life of reflection and intention. Reach out to Helen, our editor at Helen.W@holstee.com to learn more

Like Mindful Matter?

You are going to love The Holstee Subscription. Every month we explore one new mindful theme through art, words, and action. Sign up today and get your inspiration delivered!

Learn More


Recent Articles