Big News: Vince and I Are Consciously Uncoupling

I never imagined that I would be writing to you this week from a new reality:

I am solo in the van now.

Vince and I are no longer in a romantic relationship. We have decided to consciously uncouple, a term I learned from Gwyneth Paltrow, which I LOVE so much better than the word “divorce”. It allows the possibility for the formerly married couple to become like brother and sister, to stay friends, to support each other through the separation and launching of separate journeys. And I couldn’t ask for a better counterpart to do this with. Vince is amazing. We love each other immensely and we’re both SO excited for the journey we each have ahead.

Vince joins me on the show today, and we vulnerably share why we are making this decision and the huge excitement we have for the future. The end of an amazing season, the beginning of a new one.

And while I’ve experienced the most pain I think I’ve ever felt this week since leaving Vince on Sunday, I have also had a taste of more joy and happiness and freedom than I ever imagined possible. Sometimes your heart has to break wide open in order to expand to experience more love and joy than you were capable of holding before.

I know you’ll enjoy today’s momentous Coffee Time, and I can’t tell you how much your friendship and support means to me.

All my love,
Noelle

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Your Kids Are Not Yours: Let Them Go and Be Free!

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When Vince and I were first dating, his daughter Autumn was about to turn 7, and she was his whole world.  I had never met a more devoted, strong, affectionate, amazing dad, and his love for Autumn was one of the things that greatly attracted me to him.

But I noticed, that mixed in with all the love he had for his precious daughter, was fear.  And as we talked about it, he admitted that the moment she was born, he was gripped with fear.  He had never felt such responsibility in his whole life.  The weight of being entrusted with a human life was almost too much for him to bear.

But he gave everything he had within him to raising her with strength and love, and the results are obvious.  Autumn is a confident, strong, independent, joyful, carefree 12 year-old, and a lot of that is due to the incredible father she has.

In the beginning of our relationship, I noticed that his emotional tie to Autumn was very strong, and there was fear mixed in there that I knew he could be free from.   He admitted he had struggled with a fear of her dying, from the moment she was born.  So when he told me that, I said,

“Vince, you realize that God loves Autumn more than you do, right?” Continue reading “Your Kids Are Not Yours: Let Them Go and Be Free!”

Birthday Of A Saint – A Tribute To Ray Berglund: Great Poet, Spiritual Leader, and Friend

Last night Vince and I attended a private party to honor my friend Ray Berglund on his 81st birthday.  I met Ray and his exquisite wife Phyllis last summer at a pivotal time in my life.

I was sitting outside Starbucks writing the musical story of my life, knowing that I needed emotional and spiritual support in order to make my dream of performing Noelle Remembers for a full, live and engaged audience a reality.  Vince and I had been in quite a cocoon socially, and did not have many friends.

But in walked Ray and Phyllis to Starbucks, and our spirits instantly connected.  Continue reading “Birthday Of A Saint – A Tribute To Ray Berglund: Great Poet, Spiritual Leader, and Friend”

The Success of LOVE: Realizing I’ve Already Attained My Biggest Dream

On a Sunday afternoon a few weeks ago, my husband Vince left for work and I didn’t want him to go – I felt this pang of longing to spend more time with him, to continue the magical weekend that we had been having.

I let myself fully FEEL this longing – not the unhealthy desperation I have had in the past – but the true desire to spend more time with my incredible life partner, the love of my life, the man I have dreamed of since I was a little girl and first heard about romance.

It has been a very long and painful road to get to the fairytale I am now experiencing in my daily reality.

I went through intense loneliness, addiction, depression, 2 divorces,

and yet here I am – with the man of my dreams,

living a real life movie,

fully encompassed in joy and love,

affection and affirmation,

comfort and passion,

laughter and life.

This is literally a dream come true!!

After Vince left for work I watched the movie Last Love where Michael Caine plays an elderly man whose wife has just died. In one scene he is walking down the street where they used to walk together, and he is imagining her beside him, feeling her hand in his.

I started weeping.

And in a flash of remembering, I realized while sitting on that couch,

wanting to spend more time with Vince,

that before I met him,

finding him was my all-time BIGGEST DREAM.

I am a BIG dreamer, and I daily have to balance my intense desires for my future dreams with living in my current reality.

But suddenly realizing that Vince was once my biggest dream,

made me stop and feel this weight lift off my shoulders –

maybe I should let myself enjoy this a little more,

instead of striving and longing for what’s next?

If Vince died, how much would I care about my big dreams of success in the external world?

How much would I care about status or money?

If I lost him, suddenly I would realize his insane importance to me –

this great love of my life, my best friend, is one of the greatest treasures in my life.

Can I let go of the need to attain success, and realize

that I already have it?

Vince is the most incredible partner I could ever dream of having – he is so thoughtful, so constant in his adoration and affection for me, so supportive of literally everything in my life.

He really sees me, really knows me.

I never feel small with Vince – he always reminds me who I really am.

He is malleable and spiritually open, his heart is soft and strong at the same time. We can talk about anything and everything. We can watch endless movies, cuddle for hours and hours. He appreciates every meal I make as if we were at the most expensive restaurant in the world. He is the most grateful person I’ve ever met in my life.

I am continually reminded that true love is real, just by looking in his eyes.

I know, you think it sounds too rosy, right? Of course, we have our bumps – we are human, we fight, I get my feelings hurt – this is real life.

But it’s also just as real that it has become a dream.

We’ve been together 5 years, and in that time we have brought out the best versions in each other – we don’t even look the same as we looked 5 years ago – we’ve lost 100 pounds between us, which represents to me all the excess stuff that was clouding who we each really are.

We have painfully rubbed each other in all the right places, to reveal the treasure in each of us, and the place we’re at now is the dream – we have each been refined and now we can fully enjoy the fairytale we always knew was possible.

Was he the perfect prince when I met him?

No, but he is as close as they get now!

This incredible relationship is the greatest success, the biggest dream of my life.

What else is there, really?

Today is the day of my biggest success, simply because I love and am loved.

When all is said and done, relationships are ALL that matter.

I’m gonna take some time today and celebrate,

let myself ENJOY that I am already living in my biggest dream.

There is nothing to do, nothing to attain, just someone to love.

Have you not found the love of your life yet?

Don’t worry – If I can do it, you can do it.

I was a seemingly ‘lost cause’, and yet as I transformed my life by healing from my past and letting my true self shine more and more, I started attracting the people who were truly meant for me.  One of them was my life partner, Vince.  As you fill your life with love and purpose and passion, whoever is meant for you will naturally come to you.  No matter what your past experience, you were created and designed to love and be loved, whatever that dream looks like for you.  Keep dreaming, keep uncovering the treasure of who YOU really are, and everything meant for your path will magically and effortlessly appear in its perfect time.

P.S.  Haven’t had time to watch my full 43-minute, 7-video transformation musical story on YouTube yet?  How about watching #5 in the series, (it’s less than 5 min.) in which I tell the story of meeting Vince and sing a song I wrote for him!

The Amazing Support That Comes When You Boldly Share Yourself With The World

For quite some time I have been in a cocoon with my rapidly evolving views on faith and Christianity.

This week was my coming out.

It was the moment I’ve been deathly afraid of, because I knew that coming out as having moved beyond Christianity would cause great discomfort for me.

I knew that I would receive judgment, condescending concern, negative comments, and an overall increase in conflict in my world.

I do not like conflict.

I am not used to conflict.

I grew up in a very conflict-free family (the conflicts were held internally, not expressed externally).

So you can imagine how scary it was for me to announce to my 800+ friends on Facebook who are predominantly Christian that I have moved beyond this religion.

I knew it wouldn’t go over well.

And I was right.

There have been many public comments and private messages I’ve received, in direct opposition to everything I’ve been posting in my blog.

Some have been respectful, kind and loving, just trying to get me to see that I may have lost my way,

and others have been downright mean.

When you are boldly sharing your story with no other intention but love,

and you have made yourself emotionally naked to the world,

the mean messages DO hurt.

Some of my worst fears have been realized.

And yet, I can tell you honestly, confidently, 100% assuredly,

that every uncomfortable, painful moment of this week

has been like a little pin prick that I’ve already forgotten,

compared to the outpouring of authentic, full, loving support I’ve received from a handful of you.

Some of you have even supported me publicly, defending me as a person – defending my intentions and my heart.

There is nothing that can compare to the incredible reality of having true support like this, when you have offered yourself vulnerably to the world!

It’s truly worth any amount of criticism I EVER receive.

So from the bottom of my heart, to those of you who have supported me this week, words don’t even begin to suffice, but – THANK YOU!

One of my biggest supporters, and more than that,

my inspiration for what I have done this week,

is David Philip Norris.

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Way earlier this year, I came across his blog, and started reading about

his journey of coming out

as gay and as an atheist.

WOW! I was so shocked to find out these facts about him, because we went to college together at Northwestern College in St. Paul, MN (now called University of Northwestern), and we were both Christians doing the ‘Christian college’ thing. I had no idea.

Greater than my shock at learning these truths about him, was the inspiration and admiration that instantly flooded my spirit.

I thought, If David can announce to the world that he is not only an atheist, but that he is GAY, certainly I can think about coming out with my new radical views on faith.

For those of you who did not grow up in the mid-western Christian culture that David and I did, you may not understand the bigness of coming out like he did.

I was SO inspired that he was courageous enough to share himself with the world, in the face of knowing he would be the target of much concern and judgment from his family and friends.

And he WAS the brunt of much judgment, and still is.

But he keeps sharing. He’s a brilliant modern renaissance man with so much to offer the world – his beautiful music compositions, his writings, his incredible intellect, and his heart.

He boldly shares his struggles with depression and his journey after feeling like he lost so much of his life, growing up in a culture that he knew wouldn’t accept who he really was.

He shares all of this vulnerably in his blog, A hard and a rock place.

And the amazing part of this story, is that the friendship I have built this year with David is not based on shared beliefs at all.

My whole life and career is about God, Spirit, miracles.

David doesn’t believe there’s a god.

But here is the beautiful thing about authentic friendship:

It really doesn’t matter what you believe.

I have no desire to convince David that there’s a god.

Because what I’ve learned since moving beyond finite religious beliefs,

is that inside EVERY person is wisdom, truth,

and a unique journey that must be traveled authentically

and must be honored,

no matter how different it looks from MY journey.

And because we’ve both moved on from the Christian culture, the narrow and limiting Christian theology, we find common ground in LOVE and in mutual respect for each others’ beautiful and unique paths.

I have no agenda with David. And he has no agenda with me.

We can just fully support each other, honoring that we each have so much to offer each other.

David is incredible with fancy words, with intellect and debating.

I am not.

So when he came to my aid yesterday in a Facebook conversation, I was flooded with the reality of what my coming out this week has brought to me:  It’s brought me

authentic connection,

love, support,

and the beauty of a friendship with someone I never knew I would ever talk to again, after leaving college 10 years ago.

I am crying now, just feeling overwhelmed with the beauty and power of LOVE.

And although David doesn’t believe there’s a god, all I can think is that David has been God to me.

Unconditional support, unconditional love, the love that is beyond belief, beyond religion.

And now I can resonate with that line from a song in Les Mis:

“To love another person is to see the face of God.”

So what parts of yourself are you afraid to share with the rest of us?

Yes, it is scary. But anything really worth anything is gonna be scary at first.

I’m telling you — YOU have something to offer the world that no one else has.

Be bold, be courageous –

because when you authentically share yourself with the world,

you not only find yourself,

you find the most deep, powerful authentic connections with others

you find your true support and community.

We’re here waiting for YOU.

Will you join us?

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