But What is Toad Kissing?

Good morning to all! And Happy Tuesday.

I went to dinner last night with some family members, and we were talking about The Art of Toad Kissing. I noticed a bit of curiosity but more
skepticsm as they realized that I would be sharing with all of you my very personal journey through Online Dating. During the conversation, I mentioned that I saw the Art of Toad Kissing as relevant across personal dating, professional growth, and other core relationships that we all experience as we move through our lives. I’ve kissed toads at work and at play, and heck – even at home. I’ve grown from each giant smooch.

This brings us to my thoughts for today. I’ve spent my first couple of conversations with you discussing my philosophy, but I haven’t really dug into any of the pearls of wisdom that I hope to share. My first pearl:

Understand who you are and love yourself first.

Over my 41 year life, I’ve had many successes but probably double the failures. This made my first lesson tricky to learn. I spent the majority of my adult life with the wrong men for happily-ever-after, but they were the Right men at the time to help me learn myself.

Huh? I know – I ask myself that same thing. I’ll explain.

My ex-husband – while he may likely turn out to be somebody else’s Prince Charming, was clearly a giant, wart-infested toad in my life. What I learned from this man, though, was how to shed the warts and keep only the good stuff that remained – my son.

I was married for the better part of my 20s, and I pretty much all but crushed my own identity. I spent those years raising children and being a
stay at home wife and mother. I lost most – if not all – of my female friendships, and I became quite introverted.

The good news was that living within my own, lonely mind for so long allowed me to realize that I wanted so much more than the life I was
living. I wanted a career, an education and a family. The man I was married to simply didn’t share these goals, and he was quite content to live below our true abilities.

Therefore – I got out. We divorced, and I have been raising our son on my own for well over 12 years now. What a great kid!

So this was truly my first Toad Kissing experience, and I am grateful for that time in my life. Those years were my lead in to understanding
who I really wanted to be – a necessity to being able to successfully share myself and my life with another person.

Throughout my 30s, I grew both personally and professionally – and I literally swam in toad-infested ponds at work and in my romantic world. I’m sure over time I’ll share more of these experiences with you, but I learned to push myself harder in spite of people in front of me who wanted to hold me back.

So now we come to my 40s. Spending the past 20 years finally becoming an adult, I know who I am. I like who I am, and I am proud of many
accomplishments. So now, I’m ready to share. I want to talk with you all about life’s insecurities as well as celebrate all of our accomplishments. I feel that only when we can openly accept all that we are, can someone else really appreciate us – warts and all.

With this being said – I’d love to hear what you might be proud of in your life. Tell us here, or whisper it to me quietly in an email. Either way, it just feels good to have someone notice.

So what am I most proud of about me – personally – children, men and friends aside?

I’m proud of my personal drive and my commitment to always grow. I accomplish my goals, and this feels great!

How about you? What about you makes you proud?

Warm Regards,

Heidi

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