I had a very difficult decision to make midway during the year my daughter was critically ill. Do I go back to work now that she’s out of the acute critical stage of life and death, and in rehab, or do I take the second semester off as well?
I went up and down with this, going over all the pros and cons and had a hard time deciding what was the best or right thing to do.
And then it just came to me like from the clearest of blue waters. It was the most obvious and natural response. It suddenly felt so easy.
My “job” was here in the rehab hospital alongside my daughter as she was working at regaining her abilities and functions. No other job was more important than this.
(I was fortunate in that we could do without my salary for this time period. It pays to have emergency savings.)
What formulated in my mind was Purpose. It was so clear – my purpose was to coach and encourage her every step of the way along her journey towards recovery.
This gave me the energy and focus to get up each morning (in the family housing where I lived for 8 months) and start each new day as rehab mom. Being cognizant of this purpose was a huge factor in helping me cope on a daily basis. It provided a framework in which to function.
“Purpose” comes to mind in another, very different, situation. My husband and I ‘foster-parented’ a puppy. Yael was to be returned after about 18 months. We knew, as everyone said, that it would be very hard to part with him when our time was up.
The purpose in training Yael was so he could hopefully pass his tests and become a service dog for a person with disabilities. This wonderful cause propelled me and kept me focused on the task at hand; one which required more time and work than we bargained for.
When the time came to give him back, of course it was very emotional, but the greater purpose allowed me to return him in the high hopes of him doing well enough to go on to fulfill his mission. And I felt wonderful about the entire experience.
The daily ‘hows’ can be rough, but having that purpose- that ‘why’- can help keep us going along a rough path.
Can you identify your purpose during a tough time, where knowing that ‘why’ kept you in the ‘how’?
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