Still Shining

This year started off with a bang: I got a new job as a Case Manager/Transformational Coach for underprivileged youth. With God’s help, I escaped the worm hole of real estate and finally made it into the realm of what I want to do with my life. My podcast, Rough Edges, is growing in leaps and bounds: appearing on 10+ platforms (including iHeart Radio, Amazon Music, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and more!), starting a 4th season, being listened to in 13 international countries, and gained 1,000+ listens/downloads.

With the career shift and the artistic drive, it’s hard to keep up. My days feel longer, my anxious tendency to post 24/7 is getting worse, and my compassion fatigue is starting to drain me. Don’t get me wrong, I love getting to transform the lives of my clients (it’s literally my job title) and the podcast is my pride and joy.

The problem is my relentless self-sacrifice in the process. Although I’d like to believe that I can do it all, I can’t. No one tells you that being successful means losing a part of yourself if you’re not careful. For me, my inner stress manifests itself through hypomania. I know that something is wrong when I don’t feel the need to sleep or when my brain is going millions of miles a minute.

While I was feeling a bit low, I took a selfie in the bathroom mirror before I left work. In a rare moment, I glanced at myself in the mirror and saw how good I looked. This moment sparked a sense of passion in me. I realized that I needed to view my progress through a different lens. Although I left feeling a little overworked, I was still growing and learning new skills. Although I felt exhausted, taking that mirror selfie reminded me that I was still shining.

This moment became clear on the ride home. On my commute, I decided to post the selfie to Instagram, not because I needed to, but because I wanted to remind myself and the world that I’m still in this race. Here’s the caption that I wrote:

“You glow differently when you’re healing.” – Audrey Kitching

Even when life tried to take me out, I’m still shining.

Even though I gained more weight than I wanted, I’m still shining.

Even though I’m fighting the bipolar stigma day in and day out, I’m still shining.

Even though I’m not where I want to be, I’m still shining.

I’m healing, glowing, growing, and SHINING! ✨

This speaks for itself. While I sat on the bus feeling jaded and tired, I knew within my soul that I was healing through this. Self love is extremely important and it helps you to look within yourself and find the fight that you need to carry on. Don’t neglect that fight and don’t dim that light. You are still shining.

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