On today’s episode, I had the pleasure of interviewing Lacey Johnson, an accomplished Magazine Journalist, Writer, and Editor. You can find her work in places such as Oprah Magazine, Pop Sugar, Cosmopolitan, Marie Claire, and Women’s Day, to note a few. She creates universal content and seeks to spark something special in her readers to hopefully unlock something in them each time they read her work.
Grief and Lacey have been friends for her whole life. Growing up, she lived in a small town in Mississippi where her father owned a furniture and appliances store where most of her close and extended family also worked. On the same day that a six-year old Lacey faced the biggest tragedy her life to date has ever seen, her father was elected Mayor of their town. On that day, a gas pipe exploded in their family furniture and appliance buisness, and seven people tragically died; Laceys two aunts, her paternal grandmother, her own mother, and three other employees. In the aftermath of this horrific event, not a single person of influence in her life was not completely saturated in grief. She shares that, “All I knew was that my mother who buckled my shoes and made me breakfast every day, had gone to heaven. I had no idea what that meant. One day she was here and the next she was gone and it felt so cruel. I felt abandoned.”
Learning how to deal with pain and heartaches:
Lacey believes that we create circumstances for ourselves, but also believes that there are things that occur that maybe we didn’t directly attract. A profound quote from Lacey was this, “The event happens yes, but your response to it plus the event itself, that's what makes your life. You create your life by how you respond.” In every moment something horrific could happen around us, but the power is that you get to say, “ Okay who do I want to be in this situation?” Yes, you get to grieve and be sad, but you don’t stay there. There is always beauty through tragedy. Yes, I have no doubt that you have been through unbelievably painful things that others may never be able to fully understand, but the power is in the present moment and in you - and regardless of what you’ve been through, pose the question to life, “What is the beauty in this situation?” You will be amazed at the garden of beauty and joy that appears before you.
If you’re doing something that is currently keeping your light from shining; a habit, a relationship, a career - you must have radical authenticity about who you are and be honest with yourself about what you really want. So many of us grow up thinking that we have something to be ashamed of and as a result, we inherently do things we don’t mean to do. We become people pleasers and do anything we can to feel accepted. It is self-destructive to be unsupportive of yourself. Instead, choose to let go of things, people, etc., that are not serving you.
You have to be willing to face your brokenness, be misunderstood, get rejected, and you have to be willing to be not liked by everyone. If someone doesn’t like you, know that that is their illusion which they have created of you that makes them uncomfortable. Do your best to not get entangled with that. We are all in charge of our own dreams, no one else’s. There are so many invitations for gifts and moments of beauty inside your pain so long as you are willing to listen to see them.
More about Lacey Johnson:
Oprah Mag features: https://www.oprahmag.com/author/15509/lacey-johnson/
Founder of The Wonder Report - self-celebrating articles: https://thewonderreport.com