I’m Katie Webster and this is My Story… (so far!)
I was born and raised in a Geodesic Dome way up north in the Canadian wilderness. I learnt to play the fiddle, ride horses and shoot guns before I was 7 years old. My mother and father homesteaded with my younger brother and I until my father was fatally injured in a car accident just before my 7th birthday. We left the communal life and move to a medium sized industry town about 2 hours away where I spent the remainder of my childhood years. I struggled fiercely and often unpoetically against adaptation to life without my father, catholic school and town life in general. I had trouble fitting in and, as a result, switched schools 5 times before embarking on an anticipated life of independence, travel and adventure.
I graduated and left my hometown at 17, eager to see the world and basically be anywhere else. That same year my mom took my brother and I to Europe to meet my father’s family and provide us with some much needed exposure to the cultures of Western Europe. This trip was pivotal, I officially had the travel bug. When we returned I started moving around BC from place to place finally settling on the Island to go to University. After a year of studying Spanish I got restless, packed up and moved to Mexico. I lived there working various jobs for 9 months before coming home with no apparent plan, money or motivation. Being broke and back at mom’s house was not a part of the master plan my 19 year old brain had formulated thus far. While moping around I met a guy I grew quite fond of during that short period. We were married in Las Vegas and shortly thereafter moved to Vancouver where we still call home together today, 11 years later. <3
Somewhere around 25 years of age I recall feeling really lost, anxious and afraid. I was having trouble breathing and was scared shitless that something was seriously physically wrong with me. Aside from the physical component, there was also a deep and unexplainable emotional component. It was as though there was a secret that everyone else knew about life, and had just neglected to fill me in on. I was happily married, gainfully employed with all my obvious needs attended to but I felt empty, lost and exponentially alone. I was introduced to Ativan and the symptoms were suppressed but the lingering uncertainty and anxiety remained for the rest of my 20’s and into my early 30’s.
My career began to take off and I got a really great job, one some might call a great career. Although I thought at the time it was important to have a respectable, well paying job, I still had this lingering feeling as though my choices were not my own, my path was conditional and my life was governed by forces outside of my control. I often felt overwhelming resentment and like a victim of uncontrollable circumstance. It wasn’t an awful life by any means but this sense of not feeling like a complete human being haunted me. Each day I would drag myself out of bed begrudgingly with no drive whatsoever asides from the glimmer of hope that was the weekend. I felt like a sad, depleted version of myself and couldn’t see a clear way out anywhere.
All of the sudden I decided to quit my job to start my own company, I needed a change and I was getting impatient. At first the switch was great. I had freedom, flexibility and a one year bread and butter contract that kept me from wanting financially. I spent the year traveling, exploring, eating, drinking and doing all the stuff people with a decent income can afford to do. At the end of the year something still felt off. I became disturbed by the realization that all of the success, travel and decadence had not made me happy, if fact it had the opposite effect. I was left feeling depleted, exhausted and worst of all devoid of inner meaning and direction. I felt as though I had no purpose, no path and nothing to aspire to. What’s worse, I had no idea what to do next. I had achieved what I thought I wanted in life and instead of feeling complete, I felt hollow.
Later that year I met a woman who helped me completely change my life. Through the incredible personal work that she led me to do for myself, I realize now that the purpose of life is not happiness but meaning. When I sought happiness alone I was always living in the future and being disappointed by the past. I learnt the power of being committed to My own person Truth. I learnt that doing what is right for myself isn’t selfish, it’s actually the greatest gift I can give the ones I love: by showing others we have the courage to live our own lives it silently gives them permission to do the same. Taking risks and being vulnerable have both been intrinsic activities on my path to growth and development which, I will be the first to admit, is a life long process.
I am on the journey which is My Life. I don’t have absolute control over what happens every step of the way. Lets face it, if we did that would be incredibly boring and mundane. I do however have control over how I choose to frame my experiences and see the world. This shift in thinking has helped me to let go and be present in my own life. It has also opened up an overwhelming capacity and desire within me to help others. I no longer look outside for the answers to life’s questions, I trust that they are inside of me just as I know yours are inside of you too.