Being vulnerable and putting my story out there in hopes it helps someone else…The universe puts you where you need to be even before you realize you need to be there.
My life has drastically changed in the last few years partly due to the discovery of infidelity, an opinionated best friend and a fitness studio like no other.
My dad was killed in a plane crash when I was 13 years old, my first husband committed suicide while we were stationed in Puerto Rico while I was 21 years old, my step father took his own life, my mother died while I was in my thirties, I discovered a dad, brother and sister I did not realize I had in my forties and I have had my heart broken many times over by the man I trusted the most. Life has not been easy, but I like to think I have been strong, loving, kind and generous despite all of this. Sounds harsh to sum it all up like that, but that is what I have to do to keep myself going or so I thought. I did not have time to feel this grief, pain, hurt and all the emotions that come along with that kind of loss.
With my second husband, I was living this amazing life I did not think I could ever find again for years. However, everything was not as idyllic as I imagined. Would a move to a small coastal town in South Carolina be a hopeful solution? He had retired, we thought we could sell our house and live our best life. Our plan was for him to follow shortly after and rediscover our love for each other and family. His relocation never happened, yet he was committed and visited us twice a month. Months turned into twelve years and then I found myself sitting in bed one morning a year ago with him telling me he could no longer keep this up. What was wrong with me? My world was falling apart before my very eyes. Living my life solely focused on my kids and dogs for the last 12 years can be fulfilling yet quite lonely. It was comfortable, safe and easy the way it was before, but was I really happy? The first eight years, being a stay at home mom for the first time ever was glorious. Scout meetings, travel ball tournaments, camps, school sporting events and homework filled my days, kept my mind busy and my body exhausted.
As the years flew by and my daughter prepared to leave for college, my cry on your shoulder friends list was short and almost non-existent. Having neglected my needs for so long, I realized how alone and dependent I had become on my kids for feeding my self-worth. A part time job might just be the short term answer I was looking for. Let me tell you, I was not expecting what the universe provided. A woman from my days volunteering at my son’s elementary school sat next to me at a school function. Let me just preface this by saying, she scared me. She was bold, loud, aggressive, spoke her mind and the kind of person I typically avoided having conversations with. Uncomfortable small talk led to a meeting that night at her house and a job proposal I was too terrified to turn down. If you have ever gotten yourself in a situation you have no idea how to get out of you know what I am referring to and there I was stuck in one.
Marketing and running a small fitness boutique and providing social media promotion for a few of her other businesses was my new gig. Hard core cardio and lifting was my jam, so I thought free fitness classes and promote a gym, hey, I can totally get into that. Wicked Fitness is not a GYM. It is like a magical carpet ride into another dimension. This was a yoga studio, pole and aerial fitness studio, along with cardio classes and crazy events. You were encouraged to offer what no one else offered, think for yourself and outside the box. Like way, way outside the box. I am shy, introverted, embarrassed easily and lost my self-confidence many years ago. My goal was to empower other women to love themselves, their body & enrich their mind, soul and spirit when I did not even feel empowered myself. Easy, right?
This “gym” concept was intriguing: Wicked Fitness is a place that brings women together to experience a rare fitness concept that embodies “out of the box“ ideas and ever evolving exhilarating classes. Truly a unique and inviting space that embraces the true you, just as you are, encourages creativity and hosts diverse and stimulating events. Invested and committed to your success and personal growth, our highly sought after instructors assist you in surpassing your goals and ultimately changing your life.
Combine these elements and Wicked Fitness is a home away from home. An extraordinary place of love and support with a steadfast desire to bring health, wellness, fitness, and uniqueness together while embracing sexuality, beauty and a flare for the amazing. How could I not get behind this kind of small owned company?
Having been neglected for many years due to other business needs, Wicked needed some love, attention and some quality instructors brought on board. Interviewing yoga instructors in the beginning was like communicating with aliens who spoke a whole other language. Sanskrit, asana, chakras, mantras and savasana were words I had never heard before. How could yoga change your life? Come on, really? Who cries during yoga? Babies? Let’s not even get me started on Pole Fitness. We offer what? How is that fitness? Embrace your inner sexuality at the gym? What are people smoking? How does she even move like that? It was a challenge to say the least, but I was at a point in my life, that I knew I needed one. Wild, crazy, passionate and outspoken instructors are what I found.
One of our first events suggested by one was how to keep your va-jay-jay happy and healthy. Oh good lord help me. I can barely type that and you want me to talk to clients on the phone about that. If in tune, clients could see colors during meditation. Say what? What kind of place am I aligning myself with? Despite my disbelief, I even brought on sound and crystal healers. Google became my best friend. The need for understanding became an addiction for me. How is any of this possible? I needed to know.
As instructors came on board, classes got scheduled and wild events were put up, clients started calling. Not just any clients, clients who have never worked out, who were embarrassed to look in the mirror, who had tried multiple gyms only to walk away in fear, who needed a place to call home. As I began to talk to these clients, I found myself being healed right along with them. I met several at the door the first time they walked in so they had someone they “knew” there for them. I offered to go to counseling with a woman I’ve never met before as she cried and told me her story over the phone. I was being sucked into this beautiful vortex. I pride myself on possessing customer service skills that could teach the Disney franchise a thing or two, but this was a whole other level. We offered boudoir photography and women showed up in droves, flaunting their beautiful selves like they have not done in years. We created a safe and truly judgement free space. I witnessed so many transformations, that I became inspired to transform my life too. How could I be so scared to live my own life, while I am encouraging all these scared women to do things I had not done for myself yet.
Mine is a story that millions of other women share, your husband finds someone else, you have suffered loss, you have lost your voice, you no longer recognize yourself in the mirror, you are scared to make a move, scared to have a say and even terrified of change. My story is different however, because I have starting transforming my life along with hundreds of other women at the same time. At Wicked Fitness, nothing is off limits. I have taken multiple Krav Maga self-defense classes alongside women who I know needed it more than I did and they inspired me. My teenage son indulged me by escorting me to one of our ballroom dancing classes where I witnessed couples laughing who I knew were struggling. During restorative yoga classes, I have comforted women who broke down crying, kissed puppies and kittens in our fun yoga fundraisers, drank beer and mimosas with smiling yogis, actually saw the color pink during savasana and literally glowed along some badass women in glow yoga who had not felt a “glow” in years. With the lights down low, I have pole danced my way to laughter, belly danced with goddesses and blushed my way through Yoniverse workshops. These women that surround me in these classes who were shy, withdrawn and scared are completely fearless now.
My kids and I have attended sound healings and tuning fork sessions. Yes, they thought I was crazy until it worked and they felt better. I have aligned my chakras and learned about animal spirit guides. I AM AN EMPATH. Once I learned what that was, it made total sense and helped me cope with my daily struggles. The moon cycles help me purge, manifest and visualize now. I see numbers, recognize patterns and I am intrigued by what it all means. Oh and ghosts are real!
The most intriguing part of my journey has been readings with our psychic medium on staff and tarot card readings with our crystal healer. What an amazing experience that leaves me breathless every single time. The guidance I have been provided has given me so much strength. Meeting my guardian angel is next on my bucket list. Those are words that I never imagined would come out of my mouth. When a client calls to book an appointment, I am beaming with excitement for them. I know the empowerment of knowledge they are going to receive. When they are skeptical, I can relate and talk them through it. I was the most skeptical of them all and now look at me carrying around crystals in my bra and saging my house of any negativity.
That crazy, wild lady that sat down next to me almost four years ago, well, you may not be surprised to know that she is my best friend. She pushes me to stand up for myself, have my own voice, my own ideas and is that person who is there for me no matter what. I have cried on her shoulders, been hugged and comforted by her more times in the last four years than I have with any friend my whole life. I would like to think I do the same for her. She has been burned by many people she trusted, so she is closed off and hates emotions. I am bringing her soft side back out, she hates it but quietly appreciates it although she would never admit it. She had a vision for a “gym” that would change lives almost 11 years ago and I am so fortunate the universe put me in her path. Wicked Fitness is seductive, it draws you in slowly, working it’s magic whether you are hard core fitness oriented or more spiritual yogi, we offer it all and I get to be a part of that. I am still a work in progress and I probably always will be, but what I thought would break me has only pushed me to be a fighter, who is not only fighting for myself but fighting alongside so many other strong women. We just started a women’s support circle group the transformations are already flowing. Despite everything, I feel like the luckiest woman in the world right now. Everyone needs a scary, pushy friend and a little Wicked Fitness in their life.