I talk a lot about being brave, in my work as a therapist, and in the workshops I teach. I talk about showing up for your life, and not allowing obstacles get in the way of your dreams.

For a while now, my family and I have been stuck... burned out... ready for something new. We’ve considered moving out of Florida, but we’re so deeply ensconced... too busy and overwhelmed to even consider all of the ramifications of that decision, and the ripples it would cause. And so, time has passed. A long time. It’s easier, we justified, to live a moderate existence, than it is to take big risks, and shoot for greatness.

But as I have become braver, and more passionate about the things I teach others, I knew we needed to honor the dreams and goals we had as a family.

Decisions made as a family are never made alone. We all had input, and we were all heard. As a result of our talks, and a rather huge leap of faith, last week I moved to Asheville, North Carolina.

I am here as a scout. I will research and get a feel for the neighborhoods and communities, and narrow down the areas that may work best as a new home for our family.

We may decide that Asheville is not right for us. But regardless of what we discover, I am taking action towards our goals. I am no longer content with being in contemplation-mode. I am making something happen... whatever that will be. I am doing a thing.

Moving wasn’t easy. We packed up my car with art supplies and my 15-year-old cat, and I drove north. I had some adventures along the way... most of them, fun. And now, ten days after leaving Florida, I am here... in a small but pretty apartment in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, with a deflated twin air mattress and a folding green camp chair, given to me along the way.

I miss my family back home. And, I feel peaceful, and happy, and full of excited anticipation. I am alone for the first time in over 30 years. Quite frankly, it’s not as easy as y’all make it look.

My new community is friendly, and there’s lots to do. Later this week there is bingo at the Clubhouse, which, despite my husband’s reminders about taking my Geritol, I plan on attending. There are lots of dogs here. And the occasional black bear, I’m told.

Along with scouting around Asheville, I will be working on growing my business, Life Inspired: Retreats for the Soul.

Those who know me well, know that one of my favorite Brave Girl phrases is “Go Where the Peace Is”. And that’s exactly what I’ve done.

Recent Life Lessons:

On long car rides, don’t bother to leave a seat open for the cat. She will hide in the back amongst the boxes, anyway. Use the space for more art supplies.

Be nice to the hotel staff. They might just send you a fruit platter. Even if they don’t, be nice, anyway.

When shopping at Barnes & Noble, have the courage to ask for directions to the audible books section, and keep a straight face.

When a friend visits and offers to loan you a cot, say “yes”. Air mattresses are unreliable, and floors are hard.

Seeing a bear seems very cool, but it depends on the circumstances.

When you go grocery shopping for the first time since Hurricane Irma, expect to leave with random ingredients that don’t actually go together.

If you get the chance to play bingo with new friends on a Thursday afternoon, grab it.

Go where the peace is.

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