Ok. Here goes.
Last week I opened up about a very dark period in my life. I admitted being constantly negative, angry and unhappy. I talked about how it was mostly what went on in my head that was messing me up and that while my immediate family saw it, the people outside my home had little idea that I was suffering. If you missed it, you can read it here.
The response to my post was pretty amazing. The following day and subsequently this entire week, I have been emailed, called and approached by friends and strangers alike about the impact that the article had on them.
So many women said that they felt like they could have written it. Others said that they were glad that someone was finally talking about this. They thanked me for being honest and that it touched them.
That is why I am following up today with this open letter. The comments I received have confirmed to me what I have long suspected. There are many women in this town who would like a safe space to speak about the struggles of being wives and moms in Rye. Women who would love to feel understood, supported and to know for sure that they are not alone.
Rye is such an amazing town. I think we can all agree on that. But let’s be real. It can be hard to live here sometimes.
Not only do we have the regular pressures of moms everywhere, but we also live in a fishbowl of a town. And while this can be great, it can also be very stressful.
It can be hard to make decisions that you feel are right for your family when there is so much noise all around you about what everyone else is doing.
Which pre school? Public or Private? To club or not to club? Common Core? Private tutor or Kaplan? SAT or ACT? Which activities? And how much everything costs?
Forget it. You feel like your head might explode. So you get a cookie. Or a glass of wine. Or both.
I’m speaking lightly, but it is all too true. If you have trouble with second guessing yourself or what iffing, it can feel like you are slowly being enveloped in quicksand.
Do people in other places deal with these same concerns?
But does Rye have its own special high stakes version? I believe it does. Because while most of us aren’t comfortable (yet) talking about how we feel and what we are dealing with day to day, these other decisions have somehow become public fodder. Which only adds to the pressure that we all feel.
Please understand that I am not complaining about Rye. I have lived here for 17 years, had five kids go through the school system and have recently downsized. I am in it for the long haul. I love it here.
But that doesn’t mean that there aren’t areas that could use some improvement.
I know that when I was struggling, it was compounded by a feeling of isolation. Not only was I desperately trying to keep my head above water, but I was also playing the “I’m fine, we’re great” game wherever I went. It was exhausting!
I thought everyone else had it all figured out and I knew that they thought I did! This made things so much harder than they had to be.
Our town could be stronger, better and more authentic if women felt safe broaching these topics and finding support.
I love the Soul Ryeders and the Caring Committees and all the dinners, playdates and rides that get arranged when someone is ill. It is part of what is so great about Rye.
But it shouldn’t take a crisis for us to feel that kind of support.
We should ALL feel supported every day.
This is what we as women do best and I think we are missing out on an opportunity.
If there is one thing I have learned, it is that everyone is struggling in one way or another. But somehow things have gotten warped and we believe that other people have it all figured out. We see women around us and tell ourselves that they are ideal moms and wives and that they never have any trouble with their marriage, child rearing or self esteem.
This could not be further from the truth. No one is an ideal mom. And believing that other women have it all figured out only diminishes how we feel about ourselves.
I am writing this to you as a woman in Rye so that you know what I do. So that you know that there is an outlet for you right here, in your own town.
I have said often that one of the main reasons that I became a Life Coach for Women is to help guide and support women who are struggling down the path that I struggled on alone. I offer private coaching and group programs to make sure that women find the level of assistance they are looking for.
So my invitation is this: Email me at Lorna@LornaGager.com or sign up here on the site for my weekly newsletter.
Join me and the many other women in Rye who are already in my mailer family. Become part of this amazing group who are thinking about, addressing and taking action to feel better every day. Women who live here too and get it!
Just by reading every week you will feel less isolated. And if you want to take it further than that, I will keep you posted on how you can do that. There are many options–private, group, workshop and more.
But for now, start by signing up and sharing this letter with your friends. You never know who you may be helping.
If you have read this far, I thank you. I also think that if you have read this far, something about this has spoken to you.
Take action. Email me or sign up here on the website. You don’t have to feel alone any more.
In order to change your life, you must first change your mind