Wait… 2021 Is OVER?!

First of all, I have to thank my amazing clients. To the ones who have been with me for years that I now consider friends, to the new ones that I hope to work with for many years to come, thank you!

My dream of being a full-time voice actor is actually happening and I can’t thank you enough for making it actually happen. Most days I have to pinch myself to make sure this is real life and I’m always left with a heart full of gratitude. I walked out of my first voiceover class with this vision in my mind and the fact that I’m already celebrating my first year in business full-time is quite mind-boggling. So thank you to every person who has checked in on me, encouraged me, referred me to someone, or has actually paid me for something. I’m so grateful for your work, words, and presence in my life.

What makes a year successful is different for every person and no one can make that distinction but the individual themselves. I would very much consider this year to be a “Success” for me.

With that said, I’m not saying all things were rainbows and butterflies. In fact, while in many many respects it’s been the best year of my life, in others it’s been a humbling dose of reality that has forced me to look in the mirror.

I’ve always pursued the idea of personal growth but realize now my approach had been more like being on the edge of the water barely dipping a toe in to feel the temperature.

I know that all things happen for a reason and the last few years have truly put that fact into perspective for me in ways that are difficult to communicate.

Let’s Go Back…

You see, I lost my dad on November 19, 2019. He was my rock, my everyday encouragement, the one who would always remind me of what was important, and the one who I still aspire to be like every day. The lessons I learned from him are irreplaceable and are still being discovered daily as I get older and reflect on my time with him. He wasn’t perfect, and I carry that trend on, but when he died it gutted me.

Dad and I on a morning walk in April 2018

A few short months later the pandemic hit and the world as we knew it, stopped. My world, which had already been completely altered, had just been hit with even more to process. My gosh was 2020 mentally hard. (Can I get an “AMEN?!”)

On one hand, I look back on that year and think of how awesome it was for the surplus of time spent with my girls and the fun we had as a family. How lucky I was to go through the grief of losing dad being surrounded by love, with nowhere to go. My only option was to walk through the grief and I had the incredible support of my family constantly around me.

I, however, also remember putting on that brave face daily. That face that we think we have to put on every day to make sure our kids, spouse, or people around us don’t feel or sense our own anxieties and fears. That face that says “I’m fine, we are fine and all will be fine,” while internally questioning everything. There were plenty of days when I just couldn’t put that face on and had to hit my knees for answers. The more I sought out answers that I couldn’t explain myself, the more things began to make complete sense to me.

At this point, I’d say my “temperature checking of the personal growth waters” was about knee-deep. Though, if I’m honest, at the time it felt like I was in over my head and sinking deeper with each passing moment.

Perspective… It’s a wild thing.

My process of self-discovery was perfectly aligned with the opportunity to take a “pause” from life as we knew it and it was one I couldn’t ignore. Prior to COVID, I was too busy and too mentally strapped and I knew it. For years I went through a love/hate cycle with my profession so when COVID hit, I had the chance to slow down and plan for what I really wanted.

That created a lot of confusing debates with myself as to what to do and how to do it. Those internal debates led to a few mistakes that created a couple of roadblocks and wasted time. I eventually found my way around them and was able to learn a lot from the detours.

All of that led me to this year.

2021 – I’m All In…

This is when we went from testing the “Personal Growth” waters, to jumping straight in.

In my mind, this year would always go down as a “Win” regardless of what would come. I was living out a goal that I had been working towards for the last 5 years. It was a proud moment for me personally and professionally and I didn’t want to lose sight of that accomplishment.

Easier said than done though. As mentally freeing as it was for me after leaving my former job, it ushered in a whole new wave of thoughts. Again, my perspective altered.

Personally, it was a welcomed perspective change as my main goal in working for myself was to blend my work and my family together. My work had become too much of my life and kept me from doing the things I really wanted to do with my family. Even when with them, my mind was usually on work. I missed many dinners, bedtime stories, and the fun of being involved in their after-school activities.

Very few dinners have been missed this year. I’ve driven my fair share of miles dropping off and picking up. I’ve smiled through hours of dance lessons and cheered on during cheerleading practices and I wouldn’t trade one moment.

That win makes it all worth it.

Professionally, it wasn’t a record-breaking year but, it also didn’t have to be and that is actually what excites me the most. For I know that the “me” of old would have considered anything less than record-breaking as a failure and certainly not the best year of my life.

Growth & Perspective… I call that a successful year.

Thank you for taking part in an incredible year for me and I can’t wait to see what 2022 brings. I pray your 2022 is filled with Joy, Love, Growth and Perspective!

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