For so much of my life, I let fear steer the wheel.
I quit ballet after my first class because 3 girls made fun of me and I was scared nobody would be my friend.
I didn't ask the boy out because I was terrified he'd reject me and not think I was pretty enough.
I dieted and dieted in fear that I wouldn't be cast in shows because I wouldn't be "skinny enough".
Can you relate?
The past 2 years of my life, I've been on an intense journey of self discovery and a huge part of that was facing fear head on.
I faced it head on when I broke the diet cycle once and for all, and healed my relationship with food and fitness.
I faced it head on when I decided to pay everything I've learned forward and become a health coach and join a tribe of incredible women changing the freaking world.
I faced it head on when I took a good hard look at my debt, made a plan and in less than a year, paid off all my credit card debt.
I faced it head on when I went shirtless on stage for the first time in my life and faced all the body love demons that had been a part of my life for so damn long.
And heading into this year, I knew that it was time to face a fear I've been living with for a very long time.
When my dad was 18, his mum died of breast cancer at the age of 44.
And growing up, I've seen how that loss took such a toll on him. I mean, losing a parent at all let alone at 18 years old is awful -- and something that I'm so grateful to say I've not had to go through myself. Because goddamn, my parents are my best friends and that's something even just thinking about breaks my fucking heart.
And all my life, I've had this little fear living at the back of my mind that I would have the same fate as my grandma. Call it intuition, call it gut, call it fear, it was super present in my world since I was old enough to understand it.
And that fear came to an all time high during my Sophomore year of college when my Dad got tested for the BRCA gene mutations (more info on all of this and real time reactions on episode 6 of the Live Your F*ck Yes Life Podcast) and found out that he was a carrier of the gene (and the only one of his siblings who is).
At the time, I didn't fully understand what that meant, beyond the fact that I had a 50/50 chance of getting it, and honestly fear took over every ounce of me that I didn't want to know. I was 20 and the way I felt at the time was that knowing would just make it harder.
So I decided not to find out...until this year.
And you know what? Looking back, I'm grateful I waited.
Grateful because at the time, I was going through SO much internally that I think the information I knew deep down was true -- the fact that I also am BRCA 1 positive -- would have broken me in half.
Now, I'm 27, and while I'm still so young, I've lived a lot of life.
Hell, in the last 4 years alone, I've dealt with a binge eating disorder, orthorexia, planned a wedding, dealt with sudden onset anxiety, bought our first house, started my business, moved out of said home and lived in hotels for 6 months because of water damage, navigated job shifts and health issues with my hubby, started a podcast and beyond.
And that's not counting all the odd jobs, shows, teaching gigs, travels, mentoring and everything else in my life.
And while so much of it has been incredibly fulfilling and invigorating, a lot of my life has been filled with obstacle after obstacle -- as I'm sure yours has been too, because hey, that's what being a freaking human being is all about, right?
And while, at the time, those obstacles have felt INSURMOUNTABLE, here I am (and here you are) on the other side of it all, STRONGER for it and more self aware than ever.
And I sit here, grateful for it all, because it gave me the courage to stop waiting.
To show up as a warrior in my life and put the worries to rest.
So yes, I am a woman living with the BRCA 1 gene.
I don't have cancer, yet. But the chance of me getting breast or ovarian cancer is high AF.
And while that in and of itself scares the SHIT out of me, I've never felt more empowered. Because I get to do something about it.
I don't know what that is yet, but you know I'll be sharing it all along the way, mess and all, 'cause that's how I freaking roll.
And I'm so goddamn grateful to have you along for the ride.
p.s. if you aren't in our Live Your F*ck Yes Life Community, come on over and join the convo. We're all in this together babe.