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Dear Self, I’m Ready to Listen

Dear Rather,


Hi!  Remember me?  I’m writing to remind you that I’m here.  I am you, and you are me.  We are part of a Universe of amazing things and I’m ready to connect again.  It feels like you are too, am I right?  (Yes, Universe, you are right.)


island moon

Rule Breaking – night time photos of the moon

Recently, you’ve had a recurring intention to hear yourself.  To truly listen and hear what your inner voice is telling and asking of you.  This is lovely, but the burning question is how, right?  In today’s world, the short answer is to google it.  So you have… and how many thousands of answers have come up?  You’ve sought out the advice of women and entrepreneurs whom you admire, you’ve read books and blogs that are flooded with advice.  You’ve tried to journal your way towards clarity, you’ve picked up your arts and crafts, you’ve expressed this desire to practically anyone who might be able to help.


Well, here I am… your inner voice, spirit, soul, alter ego, your other half… the Universe.  I’m here to help you make up your own way.  Because that’s what this is all about, isn’t it?  Listening to yourself so that you can follow your own guidance?  Forge your own path to happiness because you know that you are the only one who has the answers that work for you?  I propose this strategy:

  1. Honor where you’ve been.
  2. Be grateful for what you have.
  3. Clarify what you want.
  4. Determine actionable steps to focus on.


These things, in this order, seem like they’ll lead somewhere special, don’t you think?  At very least it seems like a good starting point.  Obviously, we will leave room for improvement and flexibility.  We’ll also assess daily, perhaps even hourly, because we know the one thing that is always constant is change… especially for steps 3 and 4.


So many things have happened for you over the past few years.  Heck, let’s be real – it’s been 38 years of amazing things happening for you.  You read an astrology forecast recently that said the planets are shifting for the better and you’re entering a time of abundance and clarity.  It reminded you that things have been perhaps “tough” since like, what, 2010?    Something about Jupiter going direct or Venus coming home to you… I’m probably butchering the actual transits, but that’s not the point.  The point is what this forecast means to you.  That’s the point of anything astrological, right?  What it brought to you was assurance that that feeling of “wading through the muck” that you’ve grown accustom to is not just all in your head.  The energy has been real (according to you) and you’ve done a great job of persevering throughout the challenges.  The planets are shifting and these struggles are no longer yours to be had.  If this is a time of abundance and clarity, you will only know that you have achieved such things if you are clear on what that looks like for you.  Where are you planning to grow?  What are you looking forward to?


Let me help you dive in to step #1 and honor where you’ve been.  Let’s take a moment to celebrate some of the bigger wins from an “outsider’s perspective”:


  •  You’ve become a mother.  Woah.  That alone is worth some serious consideration and praise.  I know, I know… here comes your humility… “there are so many mothers out there, I’m nothing special,” you say.  “This is in my nature as a woman,” you remind yourself, “It doesn’t need to be celebrated or commended, it’s (apparently/obviously) just my calling”. You quiet your needs by saying “I have it easier than so many, I am lucky.  My partner and family support me in so many ways”.

Do you remember how you didn’t want to do this??  Can you remember how you never imagined yourself in this position?  How much you sacrificed of your SELF in order to become this version of  mother?  Please don’t let those lovely (and true) thoughts mentioned above distort the fact that you’ve accomplished the amazing feat of growing a human, (and a second, currently) and keeping her alive for 2 years.  It’s acceptable to recognize and honor your work.  This is a part of your life you will be grateful for taking the time to embrace.  It is a “stage”.  One in which your focus belongs in nurturing, not only your family, but perhaps more importantly your SELF.


  •   You relocated your home.  You moved from a place of comfort, like-minded community and family, to quite the opposite. “But I have family here too!” You might remind me, “family that clearly loves me and has opened their arms warmly with support in all ways”.  And, “the transition wasn’t so bad,” you are quick to defend, “I’m used to living in ‘vacation-land’ and I understand the ebs and flows of tourist destinations”.  “This is merely a change of climate,” you like to say, “mountain life swapped with beach life, it’s an easy transition.”

But is it?  Politics are one way to look at the stark differences of your recent homes, but they become polarizing.  Climate is certainly different – hello seasons?  Sure, you’re used to referring to them more as influxes in population and traffic, but what about leaves falling, snowfall, mud seasons, river levels, layers, drought, and wildflowers?  You left your friends and community of almost 16 years in the Gunnison Valley, 28 in Colorado.  You left the mountains; the vistas, the seasons, the snow, the stability, the adventure, the depth of knowledge, respect and access of nature, the thin air so familiar to your lungs and skin.  You left the proximity to your parents and family; the roads you grew up driving, the development you witnessed, the nature that supported you throughout all challenges.  These things are not to be replaced, and you are fortunate that they are so ingrained in your being (and the earth) that they will not go far while you are away.  They are also a part of your comfort, and they are thousands of miles away now.  This is not something to be overlooked when it comes to pursuing a life of happiness for yourself and your family.  Sure, you’ve made some new friends.  You’ve begun to develop a community that you can depend on.  You’ve discovered how important knowing your SELF is to your overall health and you’re taking strides to respect her in all of her shadowy, deep, determined, magical, whimsical ways.  That community that you left was never going to push you out of the comfort zone enough to hear her, truly.  Perhaps your time will come again to live in the mountains, but for now, the growth that is necessary needs sunshine, humidity, backwards growing seasons, backwards political views, saltwater, and the adventure of finding the like-minded people to call your friends and community.  You are being called upon to make a new home.


  •   You started a new business.  An amazing business so far outside of your comfort zone and never imagined, that it’s a struggle.  A business you began, own, and run with your husband and father of your children… out of your home.  With borrowed funds, which creates lots of pressure.  “It’s been tough, but I’m grateful for the opportunity,” you’ll reply.  “He does so much of the actual work,” you’ll remind me, “It’s hard to say I’m as helpful as I need to be”.  And of course, “the business is not profitable yet,” you’ll be quick to point out, “the industry is so new, we have so little to build upon and spend so much time informing our market of what we do… we have a long way to go”.

Ummm… hello “chronic entrepreneur”, are you really surprised by any of this?  May I remind you of how many businesses you’ve started, grown, worked for, and moved on from in your short working life?  Do you remember the moment when you realized that even your jobs waiting tables and tending bar qualified you as an entrepreneur for life?  This is a badge of honor.  This is your “career”.  Starting a business is not to be overlooked as just something else you manage to get done like the laundry or the dishes.  No matter how many times you do it, every single start-up is an accomplishment worthy of praise.  This one is especially worthy because A, you did it while pregnant, with your partner, in a new state.  B, the business is still operating after 2.5 years of growth, and you’ve come so, SO far since inception.  And, C, because this is a new industry (like you said) and you’re still here.  To say this is the proverbial “tip of the iceberg” is the understatement of the century.  You have a great idea, an excellent retention rate, and have developed awe-inspiring ways to work with your husband/partner.  You’ve established systems of operations that are setting you up for growth beyond your wildest dreams.  Your foundation is solid.  Your patience will pay off.  So will your hard work.  I mentioned this accomplishment after the motherhood and relocation for a reason – you’ve conquered some amazing tasks all while supporting this business and that is truly something to celebrate.


So there are three amazing things you have accomplished over the most recent phase of your life.  In order to not short-change the prior 36 years let’s remember that you have also traveled far and wide – Alaska to Hawaii, New England to Memphis, Canada to Honduras, Florida to Seattle, Carolinas to Northern California, Prague to Chile.  You’ve healed, holistically, from a potentially debilitating autoimmune disease.  You’ve become a health coach and helped other people heal.  You’ve skied crazy lines and survived life threatening falls.  You’ve learned to surf and SCUBA.  You’ve had your heart broken, you’ve been the source of broken hearts.  You’ve mixed delicious cocktails and cooked scrumptious meals.  You recently reclaimed your website and your title as an artist.  You found the love of your life and planned an epic party to celebrate your union.  You’ve seen your favorite bands… boogied at hundreds of shows, both alone and with dear friends.  You’ve caught fish, floated rapids, lived out of a backpack, wrecked cars, summited peaks, hopped islands, made friends, thrown parties, driven in snowstorms, lived alone, had crazy and fabulous roommates, taken pictures, kept memories near and dear to your heart.  Your life has been blessed, and you have many, MANY stories to tell.

In this letter, I’ve tried to remind you of how amazing you are.  Encourage you to honor where you have been.  This step of learning to listen to your intuition will only grow as you age.  Please be reminded of where you came from daily.  Feel free to come back to this letter as often as needed.


Tomorrow, my dear, we look at gratitude.  We begin a practice of naming and recognizing that which we are grateful for, daily.  Cherish these letters to yourself as you move through your days.  Consider me your best friend, strongest ally and biggest fan.  I am here for you in all of the ways you never even knew you needed.  I’m happy to be of service and so glad you have finally called upon me to grow with you!


Much love,



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  • Reply
    Betty L. Welch
    November 12, 2018 at 10:14 pm

    Rather, You never cease to amaze me! I love you so much and are happy you and Nate found each other! I think you are an amazing parent, wife and graddaughter. ( my only one by the way) I think you and Nate are amazing (am I overusing that word?) parents and love Williabel so much. Thank you both for teaching her to say Granny Boo and keeping me in her memory.
    Lots of love, Grandma Betty
    PS I’ll never forget the day you got out of my car, gave me a hug and called me Grandma Betty. That image is etched in my mind forever!

  • Reply
    November 13, 2018 at 2:32 am

    Dear Rather,
    You are blessed to be a blessing to our family and I love you to the moon and back, my dearest Niece! Thank you for your words of inspiration and your eloquent expressions of your love for all that you hold dear! Life is a precious gift to behold and your heartfelt knowledge and loving sense of awareness for all that you’ve been given is a true inspiration. Thank you for sharing “Rather” with us!
    Always and forever~
    Aunt Soup

  • Reply
    November 13, 2018 at 2:35 am


  • Reply
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