The Back Story
Five + years ago I came too close to death not to let it shake me to my core. I think my family knew more than I did as I lay in the hospital, which I suppose, was a good thing. It took a while to realize just how close I came to be meeting my maker but once I did, nothing looked or felt the same.
It took four years, a great doctor, anti-anxiety medication, a compassionate therapist and the steadfast love of my family for me to let go of the fear that every little twitch I felt in my back was another blood clot.
But now what? How do I live a life of purpose, meaning and intention when I’ve never known anything but rush, do, hurry and stay on the surface? I needed a complete retooling of my brain.
God’s got the plan – I am to follow
While still recovering from my blood clots, Chris got a job offer that required us to move to SLC. I eventually came only to turn around after three months and head back to MN. Chris followed suit a short time after. Once back, life went on as it always had, and I rushed through days and nights never really feeling anything except stress and frustration. My career sucked, I was not healthy in body, mind or spirit and I was lonely with all of Chris’s travel. And just as luck would have it, when I was at wits end, God once again looked down at me and said, “I guess I need to take the reins, eh?”
And take the reins he did! Chris was again asked to relocate to SLC which meant I got to quit my job, sell the house, and come back here on our terns this time. A tiny condo downtown for a few months then a beautiful home out in a tiny town where I have mountain views in every direction.
But who am I and what’s my purpose?
But what to do with my time? Who am I? What is my purpose? How can I make a difference by being open about my experiences for the sake of helping others? These thoughts swam in my head but never pushing hard enough to send me into despair. I was calm, drawing on the wisdom gained over 54 years, and knew that if I was quiet and still, I would be shown my path.
On becoming a coach
Years ago, a dear friend complimented me in saying that coaching is something I would be great at. I admit to laughing at her. After all, what is a coach? Now, here I sat, a new Utah resident with nothing to do, anxiously waiting for a glimmer of my path to be shown. It wasn’t until another friend told me to take the Enneagram test and my results clearly pointed to coaching.
The old me would have found a program and signed up immediately. The new contemplative version of me spent hours doing research on programs, niches, accreditation, marketing, placement…you name it, I thought of it (and put it all into a spreadsheet). Knowing this was definitely my path wasn’t helping as I couldn’t pull the trigger and enroll. Something felt off yet I didn’t know what. My 2019 goal of enrolling in a program by the start of January 2020 was not achieved (thankfully) and I was ok with that. Someday, I knew, it would hit me, and my heart would know.
And hit it did!
On a depressing Saturday afternoon, I began listening to Suzanne Somers new book. Immediately I became engrossed in what had always been a passion; health, nutrition, body/mind/spirit, wholeness, etc. Integrative and Functional Medicine created the foundation for everything she talked about and while I knew what Integrative Medicine was, all I knew about Functional Medicine was that a friend had met with a FM Doctor and was now being cared for and helped consistently by him.
By the next day, I can’t get enough of this book and I am feverishly taking notes. Sitting on my bed, the notion popped into my head to look into what it takes to be a Functional Medicine Doctor. Quickly I learned that wasn’t an option for me. But how about a Functional Medicine Coach? Is there such a thing? Well yes, there is! Excitedly I consumed all I could on the Functional Medicine Coaching Academy’s website and I knew, without a shadow of a doubt that this is where I belong. When I look back on that weekend, I still shake my head in awe of the expedience in knowing I belonged. I didn’t create one spreadsheet – I just went for it.
February 1, I began my year-long program through FMCA. I devour every nugget of information I get and I stomach-flopping excited on the days we meet for class.
For as long as I can remember, I have never felt so whole. Life as I knew it 9 months ago completely ended, and in its place, came Joni 2.0, the woman God was shaping me to be all along. And all I had to do was be “forced” to step away from what I knew so He could infuse me with what I really needed. I’m not going to lie and say this life re-do isn’t scary because it can really mess with my head, but I now understand how sometimes one must learn to let go of what they know and who they are in order to truly get a second chance at a life well lived.