In just over a month, my husband and I will celebrate one (wild and crazy) year of wedded bliss.
Over the past 11 months, there is one question that we’ve received over and over:
How has being married changed your relationship?
Before P and I tied the knot, I thought that our wedding day would be about commitment (one that I thought we had already made to each other in long-distance moves and late-night “I love you’s”), a legal contract, and a big ol’ party to cap off the day.
The truth is that it was all that… but also so much more.
When people ask me how being married changed our relationship, I tell them that it’s like a video game. When we exchanged vows, it was as if we unlocked a whole new level, one that I never knew even existed.
Bigger stakes, bigger spoils. Uncharted territory. New obstacles.
We love way deeper.
And we fight way more.
I wasn't much of a fighter before (being highly emotive and prone to the sad, sappy side of the emotional spectrum), but I’ve become one. Over the last eleven months, I’ve picked fights over everything from the “wrong" tone of voice to the way P drives, from clear misunderstandings to my deepest, most personal needs. I have not been one to let it lie.
For a while, I thought that something was wrong with me, with us.
I thought that the fact that we were arguing more meant that there was something intrinsically dysfunctional in our relationship or that there was something intrinsically broken in me… or both.
I found myself apologizing after every moment of friction - afraid that our newest shift in communication was a sure precursor to the end of P’s affection for me.
This new chapter in our relationship had come on so quickly that I was struggling to find my footing, struggling to figure out why it was that we were fighting - when we had rarely fought before and when our love had only deepened and expanded and felt so joyous and whole.
When I sat with it, unpacked my stories, and dug deeper, I realized that, instead of something being wrong with me, with us, this shift was a sign that things were so right.
Yes, there was more friction. But, beneath that, there was more love, more generosity, and more trust.
Trust and honesty are inextricably linked. You can’t have one without the other. To feel free to argue and sit in the tension, to use my voice as a means of honest expression, and to feel heard and honored throughout takes a solid foundation of trust. It requires a deep knowing that I’m held and supported, even in the midst of conflict and friction. It takes confidence and trust that I’ve got a partner who is there to see me in my wholeness and walk with me to the other side.
The same is true for your creative voice.
To share your soul takes deep trust in the process.
It requires a community, even if it’s just one human who is there to hold space and speak encouragement on the journey and to call you back to yourself if you meet haters along the way. It takes having someone’s hand to hold (if only metaphorically) when you push publish or hit send.
It takes knowing that whatever you speak - however messy and crazy and heart-wrenchingly vulnerable it is - will be held by the universe (and by your best friend or entrepreneurial soul sisters). It requires deep confidence that what you’re speaking needs to be spoken, needs to be shared, and that, without your words, the world would be a little less colorful, a little less honest, a little less whole.
For many of us, our voices have been stolen away. In the little moments or big betrayals. In earth-shattering traumas or the doubt that sneaks in when we least expect it.
For me, my voice (and by extension, my light) had been stolen in shattered hearts and broken boundaries, in moments when I stayed silent instead of speaking up, and in relationships where the trust was ripped from beneath my feet.
It took coming back into relationship with myself and my deepest desires for me to find my voice again. It took choosing to entrust my heart to my honey and to feel free to express my soul to him. It took a willingness - however timid and questioning at the start - to practice and screw up and create something less-than-perfect, all in the pursuit of creating something real and true and transformative.
And it took knowing that love and light require honesty and vulnerability (and that, without them, we’re lost) for me to find the courage and the clarity to reclaim and own my creative voice.
This month, I’m opening up registration for the newest iteration and expansion of my creative vision: Creative Voice Mentorships.
Creative voice mentorship is where the magic happens. Not for the faint of heart, this process is designed to guide you to explore and own your true, undiluted voice. Together, we’ll work 1-on-1 to bust through the obstacles that are keeping you from discovering and accepting the power of your voice.
Voice mentorship is multi-faceted. It’s part self-awareness, part action, part accountability and part visibility. When the pieces come together, the process gives you the clarity and confidence to show up fully in your online business.