At the end of a Hummingbird’s journey in self-awareness I had gone through fire and ice to step into life more fully. Now that I was self-aware that would be the end of trials and tribulations. Obviously.

Or perhaps it was that I had a new mind set that meant that I experienced life in a different way?

I am 36 years old. I am lying in a hospital room listening to a pharmacist tell me that I am no longer allowed cranberries trying not to laugh as Tamie quickly sweeps the bottle of cranberry juice I had just been drinking out of sight. We then have a highly amusing conversation as follows:

  • Pharmacist: “to keep your levels balanced, if you drink alcohol, you should have one glass a day”
  • Me: “so I need to drink more alcohol then”
  • Pharmacist: “no, I’m not telling you to drink more alcohol”
  • Me: “yes you are. I currently only have 2-3 glasses a week, if I have one glass a day that becomes 7 glasses a week”
  • Pharmacist: “no, I am not telling you to drink more alcohol”

I am 4 days post open-heart surgery where my mitral valve was replaced with a mechanical one. This is a necessity due to my Marfan’s Syndrome. In 2 days I get to go home again. But then I am not allowed to open doors or cook for myself etc for a few weeks as I rebuild my strength. This is the first time in my life that I have gracefully asked others for help. And have been blessed with how many people have lined up to be put on the roster.

I am 38 years old and running around like a headless chook. Due to the economic circumstances I am what is known in the management consultancy world as ‘on the bench’. This means that I am currently on non-chargeable projects. And I am busier than I ever was when working on client projects. Although flattering to be in such demand I need to learn to say ‘no’ as gracefully as I have learned to say ‘help’. One of the senior leaders gives me some tips, I try them, they work. Life becomes more manageable.

I am 39 years old and sitting in wonder as I listen to my trainer for my ‘Master Practitioner in Neuro-linguistic Programming’ read aloud from Deepak Chopra’s ‘Way of the Wizard’. I am working for a niche consultancy having decided that being a small cog in Accenture’s corporate machine was the wrong fit for me. I am single following a year-long on-again/off-again relationship with a gentleman I refer to as my ‘learning curve’. I reflect as I imbibe deeper NLP understandings that if someone had said to me before I started that relationship that I would allow myself to be emotionally manipulated in such a way that I would have laughed at them. And yet I had sunk into this place until I found the inner strength and respect for my self to say “no … enough” and walked away.

I am 40 years old soaking up the sun whilst swimming in a pool at a luxury villa in Florida. I am on a one week retreat for life coaching from Matthew Hussey. I know by investing this time and money into me now my life will change exponentially. I am sharing the week with 14 people and we go deep. The challenges and moments of AWE are real. I learn to say YES when opportunity knocks. I also prepare myself to experience my upcoming open-heart surgery to replace my aortic valve with a mechanical one in a very different way than last time. And I do. Only 6 weeks post surgery I am dancing at a friend’s wedding.

I am 42 years old and signing documents for a holding deposit to purchase a house off-plan. Sitting next to me is Gareth, who I have been dating for 4 months. On the drive over here I was explaining to him how frustrating I was finding the whole house buying experience in the UK. I had been looking for 18 months. Usually I make decisions quickly – for instance when I bought my car … went to the lot, looked at 3, test drove one, bought it and drove away with it 3 hours later. Job done. As we arrived at this estate with it’s history and majesty captured my imagination as soon as we arrived. Three hours later I had bought a 2-bed, 2-bath townhouse.

I am 43 years old sitting on the back of a big yellow truck bouncing my way across the Serengeti. I have just sat for 15 minutes making eye contact with a leopard lounging in a tree. I am on a 3-month sabbatical from my work that I requested when I realised that buying a house ‘off-plan’ meant waiting at least 12-18 months. Waiting has never been a strong point. And I was ready to make a move in my professional journey. A significant one. But I had to stay where I was to get a mortgage. This whole adulting malarkey is less than it is cracked up to be. I am deepening my understanding of myself as an introvert as I share this truck with between 15-25 other people over 11 weeks.

I am 44 years old, standing hand-in-hand with Gareth as we use our brand new key to open the front door of the house we have now bought together. In 5 days time 100+ family and friends will be arriving from across the globe to celebrate with us our love & commitment as evidenced through our joint mortgage. I have been in high stress mode for the last 2 months as completion on the house dragged on 9 months longer than the initial ‘due date’. Our big party, our ‘not wedding’, is happening in our new home. The afternoon is a picnic with games for the children whilst the adults appreciate the cricket being played on the historical cricket pitch across the driveway from our brand new front door. The evening is a spit roast for our family & friends without children. Many silly photos are taken in the booth. A fabulous celebration!

I am empowered through my core confidence, evolving resilience and buoyant existentialism to dance through the reality of all that diverse live throws at me. I live my life to the fullest – ever-changing, ever-varied. 

I share meaningful moments with my partner, my family, my friends, my social network, my peers, my colleagues. I make a difference for clients through my wide-ranging perspectives and the relationships I nurture. I travel far and wide experiencing places, people and activities that I have dreamed of for a life time. I am open to what else my life evolves into as I continue to pursue my curiosity wherever it may lead me!