Was 2018 only one year long? 2018 was a year of immense struggle and sadness after the unexpected death of my husband in December 2017. But it has also been filled with many #blessings, the biggest of which is love.

The months following my husband’s death are a blur. I went deep within myself, opting to be by myself most of the time, avoiding social activities and hanging out only with my closest friends and family. I went to my CrossFit gym a few times per week to get myself out of the house. I snuggled with my dog.

I went into “take care of business” mode like somewhat of a robot-zombie. I turned in circles, overwhelmed by the smallest of tasks, trying to focus on building my business while making sure my family was doing okay and simultaneously working on a big downsize in preparation for a cross-country move. I was overcome with guilt when I focused on my personal life tasks instead of business tasks.

At some point, I realized that I needed to #surrender to the fact that I couldn’t DO IT ALL. I needed to put my business completely aside and focus only on what was most important…being there fully for my son, focusing on my personal obligations, and #TRUSTING that everything will work out.

I learned to sit with immense #loneliness. It was tough. There were a lot of tears. But it was also a time of incredible #reflection and #personalgrowth. A time to put clarity on who I want to BE and how I want to show up FOR this world. A time to focus on #gratitude and to #INSPIRE others.

Through all the tears, sadness and loneliness, I always felt surrounded by magical #LOVE, and I learned to #RECEIVE LOVE in a way that I never had before. I learned to love myself on a deeper level. Every time I felt overwhelmed or awash with loneliness, the Universe would deliver a reminder that I am loved at the perfect moment, through a message from a friend, a card in the mail, a phone call, etc. Through all the loneliness I was loved.

Life is full of #challenges, and we get to decide how we choose to BE despite those challenges. They are #opportunities for personal growth and reflection. Opportunities to realize that love is all around you. Surrender to it.

(at San Diego, California)