"DON'T DREAM IT, BE IT" Turning Points
I love my husband very, very much, but he didn't ask me when he ran for mayor and he didn't consult me about running for governor. It would be nice to be asked.
. . . You know, I've been my mother's daughter, my father's daughter, the wife of my husband, the mother of my six children, and a grandmother to my eleven grandchildren, but I have never been me. But I am now because I went away. I am a changed woman.
-- Angelina Alioto, wife of a California politician, after disappearing for eighteen days
When things go wrong, don't go with them. -- Anonymous
I didn't know that I could leave. -- Client, age forty-nine
I didn't know that I could leave. -- Client, age thirty-nine
I didn't know that I could leave. -- Client, age twenty-seven
The change process often begins with moments of illumination and insight when we bump into ourselves or others and are redirected by the encounter. When women told me about the exciting changes they made in their lives, my question was, "How did you begin?"
Each one of us brings to the turning points in life our personality, history, accumulation of experience, and myriad influences. There is much we have in common, but because of our idiosyncrasies, the processes of mourning our losses and the reconnection to ourselves is entirely personal. Therefore, in the final steps to refocussing our futures, among us we find similar underlying dynamics but one-of-a-kind moments when we summon our courage and take a step that turns us onto a different path. Remember, the Skin Horse cautioned the Velveteen Rabbit on becoming real, "It doesn't often happen to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept."1