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Article: What This New Year Means to Me: A Personal Reflection from Our Founder Catherine

What This New Year Means to Me: A Personal Reflection from Our Founder Catherine

What This New Year Means to Me: A Personal Reflection from Our Founder Catherine

At the start of this new year, the word emergence seems to be constantly on my mind.

Perhaps you are having a similar word run through your head as well right now? 

Individually and collectively, many of us seem to be coming out of a period of extended hibernation, blinking into the sun, and noticing that we are somehow altered. 

Let me explain. 

Although I generally shy away from commitments or expectations related to a new calendar year, with the ending of 2022, there is a sense of completion around a long personal winter that started for me almost three years ago. 

This wintering has been an incredibly challenging journey, but also a period of deep healing and growth for me. During this time, I had to work through the experience of continuously feeling trapped mentally, emotionally, and physically. 

No doubt this has been an experience felt by so many during these unprecedented, tumultuous, and frankly frightening times. For me the mental and emotional entrapment seemed to manifest physically as an inexplicable chronic neck and back pain that I just could not seem to heal. 

Catherine leans against the couch writing in her journal.

My internal landscape felt like a winter world covered in a heavy blanket of snow, all the usual landmarks and signposts buried below. I had to dig deep into trusting my inner compass and simply continue to do the work of showing up for my commitments, searching for answers, and allowing my intuition to lead me to each next step.

For me, the person that is emerging is one that is humbled by this journey through my inner darkness, and also one who has faith that she is part of a greater plan. 

I now understand that the world needs people who live in possibility so much more than it needs the cynics. Cynicism gives us an excuse not to act and stay frozen, a victim of life, rather than courageously acting on faith and hope.

I know I am not alone. There are so many people like me undergoing an awakening of sorts, an emerging, into a self that is more open, curious, and willing to trust; but also willing to dare and lead in a new way. 

I am heartened by what I am seeing around me. I am encouraged by where I find myself, after this long winter of the soul. Many of you reading this post have shared similar experiences. It seems we are answering the call and doing the hard work of unlocking our pain and trauma so that we can move beyond it and tap into a greater possibility for ourselves and those around us. The world needs us in this time, more than ever.

In a time where it's easy to close our hearts to everyone except those closest to us, I want to be bigger than this. I know that we are all bigger than this. This is truly the only way that love wins over fear: to open our hearts more when it is scary or uncertain, rather than closing the gates and sliding the deadbolt against the world.

Catherine sits on the floor, leaning against a sofa, and reading her journal.

At SoYoung, we make beautiful and helpful everyday carrying solutions that I am so very proud of, that is true. Equally true is that SoYoung stands for something much greater than the products we make. We stand for having the courage to continuously hold a higher vision for ourselves and then every day taking small steps in that direction. When we do this for long enough, and consistently enough, transformation happens. 

When I started SoYoung, I never could have imagined that it would become the vehicle through which I would transform, and that the brand would become a voice for healing. Quite honestly, part of my struggle in the past few years has been about grappling with how to use this platform to build a community of like minded people. Would anyone care? Would it matter? I have to trust that you are reading this for a reason. Maybe you, like me, are a seeker too. The call to build this community has been consistent and strong, and I am emerging from self-doubt, stepping into a greater purpose. 

I hope you will join me on this journey.

What is the one word that captures exactly where you are right now? I would love to hear from you.

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