Welcome to Women Move it Forward

This is a collaborative blog about women in transition from lifestyle A to lifestyle B.  Transition is inspired, and sometimes forced by differing circumstances. Walk the journey with the five women who have come together to share their experiences in this blog.  Why collaborative?  For each of us, this is an experiment to see how collaborative energy can be used to serve the whole – each of us individually, all of us as a group, and you the reader.

We have in common that we are certified practitioners for the Equine Gestalt Coaching Method and the passion to share the healing power of Equus.

Carroll Ellis – Colorado

It was a warm and pleasant evening.  Spring had finally arrived. Several women were gathered together enjoying the night.  After sharing some pleasantries, they found themselves pondering major changes that had occurred in their lives. Every woman present had undergone transformation in a unique and special way. One brave soul steps up, introduces herself and begins to describe her experience…

Hello, my name is Carroll and I am a recovering perfectionist. It has been two days since I criticized myself for not doing a good enough job. I believe perfectionism is a disease which is more rampant than alcoholism; and may have been what drove many alcoholics to drink. The only reason I believe it is not recognized as a disease is because perfectionists are very useful to have around. In the military, attention to detail is a very critical aspect in every position. Attention to detail is fine just by itself; however, putting that together with the “zero-tolerance” for errors drives a goal of perfectionism. Guess what? The military is made up of human beings, therefore perfection is impossible. I am in the process of transitioning from a career in the military to finding peace with myself and walking the sacred path. I am looking forward to sharing my experiences in the hopes that others can learn from them and realize that it is more than okay to be human…

 Barbara Broxterman – Florida

The thought of retirement and how I really wanted to live my life had been more and more on my mind the last few years. I knew I no longer wanted to work full time but I did want to live full time. For me, retirement, much like selecting a career after graduating from high school, was full of possibilities, doubts, financial concerns, curiosity, learning opportunities, change and to be who I really wanted to be. And so one year ago, I retired from as an engineer to be home, get to know my family and husband again, regain who and what I am meant to be and live to help others find their way.

When I headed to college, 40+ years ago, I knew I loved nature, horses, the spirit world, sun rises, independence, quiet moments, small groups, music, challenges, the gift of sharing knowledge with others, reading, travel, mother earth and sharing joy and finding happiness in others.  I traversed through college and observed friends, colleges and professors. I watched what was acceptable and what was not.  I learned new ideas, took on new identities and allowed parts of me to disappear in order to be acknowledged. I trained for a challenging, and secure job, made good money, had prestige and climbed the corporate ladder. I gave it my all and tried to become who I thought I needed to be successful. The “me” I was, became someone different and a hollow, sense of longing lingered nearby. I married, became a wife and later a mother, all of which I was very proud of, but in the midst of it all, I often realized I no longer could recognize myself and could not be my best for my family.

As a Women in Transition, I want to share with you my journey of finding myself and heeding my true essence, so I can inspire others to find and listen to their own inner compass.  Finding yourself is not losing who you are, but becoming the person you are meant to be and to experience what’s possible.

BB Harding – Colorado

I was standing in a small circle listening to my colleagues talk about birthdays – one said she was closer to 40 than 30 and another said she was closer to 50 than 40 and then everyone disbands for a meeting.  I was thinking to myself I’m closer to 70 than I am 60.  An incredibly sobering thought.  How did I get here?  The obvious answer is one day at a time, yet somehow, it seemed that suddenly I had grown older without having any idea that I had done so.

As an EGCM® practitioner that was near retirement, I had in my sites a target market of women who were retiring from corporate America; those who were now single because of a death of a loved one or a divorce after a long-term marriage; those who were now empty nesters; and women who just wanted to make a change.  All of whom would now have the opportunity to pursue their heart career.  A few weeks ago, I had a sudden realization that people who were retiring, especially at “retirement age” probably had no particular desire to go after “their heart career;” rather have the chance to relax and enjoy life.  Suddenly, I saw my target market drying up. J

I find myself not planning for retirement, nor on the other side where I have been retired for a particular duration.  Instead, I am in the middle of the transition.  I find myself aware of both very subtle and not so subtle emotional states around just the thought of retirement – the standard ones – what will I do?  How will I pay the bills?  Will I have enough money?  What is my value?  Can I find meaning in my life?  My hope is that others would find some interest/inspiration in reading along as I traverse this significant transition in my life.

Michelle Sidun – Wyoming

Since moving to Wyoming, my parents have been making an annual journey from Texas each summer. The last 2 years they have brought with them a trove of treasures that have been packed neatly away in storage for years. I’ve gone through most of the boxes more than once, sometimes handing something on to one of my own children or grandchildren, sometimes finding a special place for it in my home and many times the things just go back in the box. I have chuckled and smiled and embraced each memory and I have also realized how much I’ve changed. I was a very pretty baby, an adorable toddler and then in my preteens and teens, not so much.  I was a nerd, skinny, shy and, yes, I also wore glasses! The really thick “coke bottle” type with those really big 1970’s and 80’s frames! I was the poster child for kids that get picked on, teased and bullied. In fact, even into my 30’s, my mother-in-law often referred to my legs as poster child legs when I wore shorts. Poster child, hmmm… not how I see myself today. I see a beautiful, unique woman. A cowgirl model that you might see on the cover of a magazine. But how did I go from poster child to model in my mind? There wasn’t a manual, no list of instructions. It has been a life-long journey of coming into my own AND the teasing and bullying hasn’t stopped. I am still a target. Probably for different reasons, but bullying is bullying. What is different is how I’ve learned to process and deal with it. What has shifted is how it affects me. My vision is to share my journey, my awareness with others so that they can make those shifts and discoveries. It’s not a manual or instruction booklet but it’s a start, part of my vision to eradicate bullying.

Jocelyn Hastie – Canada

Having recently overcome cancer diagnosis, surgery and seven weeks of intense chemotherapy and radiation treatments, I have experienced dramatic – and traumatic- transition.  While undergoing these seemingly intolerable treatments, I realized that I did not have the energy to use the “warrior” methods of coping with challenges that I had learned and practiced throughout most of my life.  I needed to find a new way to wage this war – to embrace the teachings contained within this horribly frightening situation and travel down paths that seemed difficult or even impossible at first.

Entering into a more intimate relationship with my body and soul, the lessons I learned improved my life. I hope that sharing my story will inspire you to uncover your courage and unbridle yourself from feelings of powerlessness in your own life.

I was delighted to be able to participate when the opportunity arose to collaborate with a group of incredible women with a shared passion for partnering with horses to assist in affecting meaningful change for people.  Through this shared blog with an emphasis on women in transition, I look forward to helping to create a dialogue that will benefit us all.