- Cynthia Coupe
My COVID Relaunch Party
You know how life is…how it sets you up for exactly what you need, for exactly what you get to look at, and it’ll keep doing this for you until you’re pinned down, staring that thing in the eye until you FINALLY recognize it?
Yeah, that’s where I’ve been.
So here I am, pinned down by a medical restraining order of sorts (I caught COVID this week), while I face my life. I can tell you, for certain, this is the lowest I have ever felt, these are the hardest decisions I have ever had to make, and I’m scared shitless.
My last several posts have been about uncertainty, strife, possibility, losing ground, and finding it again…Last week, I thought I’d found it, and this week…well, this is the ultimate bottom of the barrel, I think. God, I hope. Please, please let this be the end of the whole fucking shit-heap of a year. And if it's not, then lord please grant me the needed fortitude to keep on going. I know I’m strong…and yet…My strength is turning into something I never thought it would. It’s turning away from anything that makes sense, going towards an uncertain future and letting go of a dream that I held very dear.
I’m taking what I thought I knew, what I thought I wanted and I’m burning it all to the ground.
Last week I started seeing how I could take my changed circumstances and divide my energy and make it work from there. And then this week I caught COVID. The dreaded SARS-CoV. Honestly, I’m fine. I am a little tired, a little off-center, but mostly I’m fine. It’s mild. But it is COVID, so I have to be quarantined.
Which means…I’m faced to look at my life and my self and my energy and see what do I really have time for? What is the best return on my energetic output?
And in this downtime has laid the blessing, the final piece I needed, and I do mean that.
I’m go-go-go, figure it all out, get it all done, ask others to join me but do everything by myself except if it comes to my own future, then I second guess everything and rely on someone else’s perspective and influence.
And you know what? That’s all gone to hell in a handbasket this year.
So, as I said in my last post…the implosion of my business that Frank and I started has been real. Real difficult, happening for real, and really a lot to sort through. Last week I thought I had the energy to get it going again, to pass it off to the manager while I started my own thing, to multitask like a madwoman as I usually do.
COVID helped me realize that I don’t have the bandwidth, the energy or the desire to multitask. As one would say, I have no more fucks to give. And, as I am want to do when my life is falling apart and I get sick…well, I get kinda sorry for myself. I’ve been feeling like I can’t do this thing that requires only me…what oracle can I read? What BFF can I contact? Is there a psychic in the house?
No. None of those things. There is only me. This is what I've been running from facing.
I had a good cry about it last night, knowing that all the answers need to come from me. Whatever it is I am creating, it’s mine to create. Others can join in (and I will want them to, YES!) but the drive, the desire, the plan I am building is mine, created by me for the life I am designing. Created by me for the Cynthia I am now, not the Cynthia I was. I get to show up 100% as me and meet whoever I work or collaborate with from that space.
I can tell you, I don’t want to do this alone. I like having a partner. I like being a partner. I like co-creating things with another. I like not being the only one. And in this lies the rub. My foundation has always been somewhat false. I’m prone to give away what I know to be true…what I hold dear, what feeds me…to another. I want to know what they want, and then I support it. I want to hear their opinion, and lose sight of my own. I am malleable, changeable, adaptable, yes. This is not aways bad…but, what has been bad is that I do not trust myself. And as a result, I end up also not being true to myself. Now, Frank and I, we were in close alignment. It wasn’t identical, but it was similar enough. I loved what he wanted, I wanted that for him and for our people too. I really did. But I didn’t want it for myself. I played along, becasue I figured ultimately it would get us both what we wanted, and that seemed to work. As a partnership, it totally worked. As a solo person, not so much.
Then the foundation we had built came crumbling down, and in it I didn’t see what I had built, what would sustain ME in times like this. I thought I could go on and kind of rebuild what we had created, because I’m capable of that and I don’t want to let people down…but my energy is super limited right now and I lost all feelings for what I “should” be doing. I have been forced to take a deep look at me.
So I went to sleep last night, and I had a dream…I dreamt that I was at my OARS office…there were a couple of clients there and a couple of employees. I was in the building, looking around. One client had made a chair very messy, and an employee was trying to clean it. Don’t bother, I said…I think I’m leaving. Somehow Frank was there, but once I realized it the dream shifted and he was gone…I got in this armchair and said I was going to do some errands. I drove the chair out the front door…nobody knew I could do that, but I knew I could…I pushed the front door open with the chair and I laughed more freely and harder than I ever had. “I’m not coming back!” I said with glee…and I knew that was what needed to happen. I went back to that dream sometime later, tried to find Frank...I couldn’t find him but I did get the message that I need to write it all down…write down all the things that need to happen if I keep the business vs. if I let it go.
And here’s the thing I’ve been wrestling with: How do I know if it’s the right decision? How do I know what I should do?
And in this quiet time, in this forced relaxation that I am dubbing my COVID Relaunch Party, I’ve come up with a new knowing, a new understanding. My job is not to know definitively what the answer is. My task is to come up with feeling in to what the next right step might be. That next right step leads me somewhere where there will be more choices, and more options that wouldn’t have been available if I stayed in the previous step. Perhaps where I start is not where I end up (I mean, isn’t that always the way?), but if I don’t start somewhere, I’ll never end up where I want to go.
I have been understandably paralyzed with the reality that I am giving up my past, and I don’t know my future. I am preparing to completely dissolve what Frank and I started. My hope, my idea, and my intention was to carry on his legacy. To make sure his dream was made solid. But at what expense? At the expense of me not realizing my own dream? Is that what he would want?
I want the both/and. I want to make the business he and I started stay while also realizing my next steps. But the truth is, I’ve been knocked down so hard these past couple of months I don’t have the energy to do that. Energetically, I need to cut the ties. I need to free myself so I can move on.
The terrifying part is that I only have a glimmer of what that is, with no contracts or agreements or ships on the horizon that are bringing me cash flow. I am doing this based 100% on blind faith. That is soul scaring. And yet, here I go. I trust in following what feels right, without knowing what or how or when or from where.
Gulp. Yikes. Holy Smokes.
Hold on to your hats, we’re in for a ride.
And let me tell you…in this experience of 2022, I’ve shed literally everything I thought I was. Ok, not everything, everything, but damn near it. Everything I thought I had, anyone I thought I was: completely changed. I’m still a mother, but even that’s changing with a tween in the house. I have never let every single thing go on this level before. I’m speechless. And yet…I know I am completely capable. I trust my inner knowing to guide me where I need to go, even if it’s scary and takes very hard decisions.
All the things I’ve spent most of my life working towards…being a Speech-Langauge Pathologist, a wife, a business owner…all changing.
It’s disorienting and freeing. I’m not sure what to think, but I feel a sense of disentanglement, a freedom in floating that seems very nice right now.
I don’t know what’s next. We’ll see what I create from this space. Anything is possible.
The thing is: we only have a vantage point of so far. As a human, it’s limited. We cannot see past what we think we know, or what we think we can create. But there is so much we don’t know! I know that what is for me will not pass me by… and this year has been so tough, I’m happy to take a backseat to what I thought i wanted while I follow whatever the next enjoyable thing is. Who knows where that might lead? It could be incredibly fun, and bring me right to where I’m supposed to be. Which of course it will, it’s just going to look very different than I ever imagined.