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Article

Being You

Char Murphy

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Hi! I’m Char Murphy, really Charlotte, but my friends call me Char, so you can too.

I figured I’d give everyone here a formal introduction to me because most of you don’t have a clue who I am—and maybe you don’t care—that’s all right too. I really don’t put myself ‘out there’ all that much. Mainly because I’m too busy just being me—and I’m good with that. Oh…and I won’t use a bunch of big fancy ‘buzz words’ to tell you who I am or highlight my education with all the strongest jargon to impress you with what I’ve learned—or, write in the ‘style of the day,’ which jumps off the page as being the most knowledgeable on trends to woo and wow you. I write in my own style, straight from my heart. And, call it like I see it. You don’t have to like me or agree with me, I’m not worried about such petty things. And…I’m not trying to sell you anything. (smile)

Anyway, here goes!

Heading into the second half of my 6th century here on earth—I really never dreamed I’d be working through another life evolution, starting yet another new chapter, a new venture —but ya know, I’m a “natural born entrepreneur.”

Even more meaningful though is— I can’t help it, that’s just something I love to do! It’s a large part of who I am. It gives my life additional meaning and brings me great joy— to create new opportunities, different avenues with which I am able to use my hard-earned ‘life-wisdom’ to serve others. It’s in my blood and has woven a golden thread throughout my entire existence. So not surprisingly here now, I ‘find myself’ yet again. Yep, here we go—through another major shift, starting all over. And it’s a big one, it may be my last stand, or maybe not (wink)— but I plan to make an even greater impact on people’s lives than anything I’ve ever done before —I’ve come too far not to.

And I’ll go out happy, smiling—knowing I did everything I could possibly do, in the areas of my expertise and life experiences, to make an impact on the lives of others. To leave a legacy for my grandchildren to know…who their ‘Cha-Cha’ really was. This time, on my terms, with an even stronger will and determination to make a real difference—more seasoned—than ever before, with an even stronger passion and excitement for what I’m doing. I have a choice of what to do with the rest of my life. And by gosh, I’m going to make it count.

Why, you ask? Because my life’s purpose is to simply help, uplift, and encourage people. Just to give others hope in the tough times. We’ve all had those times, right? I know you have because we all have. And I’ve read some, about you and what you do, but what you didn’t tell me is who you are. The main thing is, you made it this far, not all have been as fortunate. Congratulations! I know it hasn’t always been easy.

All that—is really not important though. It’s just one part of what’s made me who I am, it’s just another one of the transition periods I was forced to go through. I’ve had my share too. I have been blessed to make it through four, yep four— breast cancer diagnoses and all the tests, procedures—laying face down on a cold metal table with my breasts sticking through holes, as a Dr. rolled a stool up underneath me lying on that table and stuck needles in five different places in my breasts, so they could test the tissue for cancer- without anesthesia.

Then there’s all the surgeries and the treatments that followed. How many times? I literally have no idea. All that—is really not important though. It’s just one part of what’s made me who I am, it’s just another one of the transition periods I was forced to go through.

And there have been many more, but I’m not even going there. It’s all been good, that’s how I choose to look at it. Not always fun, but definitely good. I believe in finding the best in everything life delivers. It’s through those tough transitions that I learned and grew into the full essence of who I am now. That’s the reason I now understand that at each transit, I morphed into a stronger, more compassionate, caring, giving, and loving person.

When I started going through radiation after my first breast cancer diagnosis, I’ll never forget—there was a gentleman that worked in the area where the patients waited their turn. His mere essence left such a marked impression on me and my life. I think his official title was “head custodian” or something like that…but let me tell you, he was far more than that.

He would come by every single day and greet each one of us who were waiting. He had the greatest smile, his laugh contagious and his eyes were lit up, as he worked his way around the room glowing like the angel he was. He stopped by each one, putting his comforting hand gently on a slumped shoulder, asking how we were doing and if he could bring us a cup of coffee or some water.

And even after he left the room, his positive energy remained. He exuded such compassion— a warmth, gentleness and genuineness in his mild manner.

He became a light in my every day which I looked forward to, through such a difficult time, I no longer dreaded going. He really cared, he felt our pain and it showed. That is just who he was. I said, “wow, what an amazing person he is, I want to be like him!”

From the first day I met him, I looked forward to seeing him again. He somehow lifted a burden off of me. And every single time as we got to know each other better he never wavered, he never stopped smiling, giving everyone our daily dose of kindness and encouragement. He changed my whole attitude towards ‘the disease’, my course of treatment...and the course of my life.

He gave me hope—he inspired me and he contributed to me becoming who I am, more than he ever knew— because I didn’t even know how much he would affect my whole life at the time. He made me want to be a survivor and to live and he reinforced my life’s mission— to be that person for others. What a blessing he was, a superbly human— human being.

And you understand, if it had not been for the fact that I had breast cancer, I would never have met and gotten to experience the essence of such an amazing spirit as Carl.

He was sent as a gift, which I needed desperately—it was indeed his daily and life mission to lift those who were hurting up. And I was one of the ‘privileged ones’.

He had no idea who I was, my title, my education, my status in life- he didn’t care about the color of my skin- being different than his, my age, my creed, or religion…none of that mattered to him. All that mattered was he knew—I—we—were all going through a crisis at the time. And he had a burning desire in his heart to be a bright beacon through the storm.

You see, I believe there are no accidents in life and that every person we are graced to encounter on our life’s path, is for a reason to teach us something about ourselves. It’s up to us to want to look deeper and discover what that is.

We can choose to stay in our bubble of fear, anger, hatred, jealousy, greed, self-pity…OR…we can choose to embrace the changes and transform our life into something better.

We have to be willing to step outside ourselves and make the choice to look deeper inside of our soul— to say yes! And embrace life’s bumps and bruises, come through them more enlightened and empowered by the opportunities they offer. Or—we have the option to refuse to pay attention, ignore those potentially life-altering messages, do nothing, and continue in misery and disgust. Never living up to our true potential and die unhappy.

I realized upon spending time with Carl, that what our job title is—does not define who we are, it really doesn’t matter at all. Not the accolades, rewards or money we make either…no, not at all. You understand I was a successful attorney with my own law practice at the height of my career when breast cancer struck, without warning. I never went back…that part of my life was over and boy am I glad.

However, at the time, I was admittedly scared, confused, lost, not knowing what was next for me. What was I going to do? Everything I had worked towards for so long—my title, my identity, my lifestyle, and way of making money—were all gone in an instant, the snap of my fingers. Poof!

I look back now and laugh and feel grateful for that cancer—it saved my life. Yes, ‘breast cancer saved my life!’

With all that said, we have to know and understand—we’re not our story. That’s only how we got to be who and where we are right now. I use my story only to inspire and give hope to those in transition. Not to make you feel sorry for me, or say wow—she’s really been through a lot—that’s not the point.

My story is used merely as a tool, to help you find your own inner power and stimulate you— to find the real you, amongst the rubble of your past, to know that you can do it too—anything you want to do. It’s who we are on the inside and what we give of ourselves to others. That’s what really matters and that’s where our real power lies—that inner passion to change lives, just by being who we are.

They don’t teach us that in school. Carl taught me—not by telling me, but by showing me.

I have a true calling, to BE that person for everyone I meet in need but at the same time- take care of myself.

You ask me…Well, what’s your ‘Super Power?’ That’s it. I simply live my life encouraging, inspiring, empowering teaching, and just showing people how to do what they were put here to do—be who they are meant to be and how to ride the waves of the choppy waves…and to do it from their heart, that’s where your- our- individual and collective power is.

I have a true calling, to BE that person for everyone I meet in need but at the same time- take care of myself. It takes some tough decision making and yeah it’s hard at times. People sometimes don’t get it…especially on social media. It’s hard making yourself known in a sea of the unknown.

Everyone believes—everyone else—is just out to make a buck or two off of them. I’m guilty of it- and been on both sides, I’ve experienced it. Even trusted people I didn’t know, because they gave me “a good line.” And that’s okay- I’m actually grateful for those people- because they have taught me, that to be a good person doesn’t mean I have to be naive, I just have to be real.

However, there are a lot of great people here and everywhere—I choose to see everyone in the highest and best light—until they prove themselves otherwise. And “never judge a book by its cover,” they can be deceiving.

BE one of those people like my friend Carl. BE who you are and you’ll start attracting more good into your life. It’s ‘Universal Law,’ ‘The Law of Attraction,’ ‘like attracts like.’ BE one that does not push what you DO—or your agenda. Push who ‘YOU ARE.’ And it’s there you will find your joy and success, if your heart is truly in the right place, you’ll be alright, no matter what life throws your way.

In the bigger scheme of things, all of us here are doing the best we can with what we have and with what life has dealt us. My way may look different than yours, that’s because we’re all unique in our own special way. It doesn’t make my way better or your way less than. All that matters is that we give it our best-we are our best-to the best of our ability —at all times.

Thank you from my heart to yours and it’s very nice to meet you.


Originally featured on BizCatalyst360°
Benjamin Hotel
Benjamin Hotel

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Char Murphy

Char is a 15-year former practicing attorney, now three-time book author, speaker, featured contributing author to such amazing organizations as, Motivation Champs, BIZCATALYST 360, P.O.W.E.R.(Professional Organization of Women of Excellence), REVIVAL Sanctuary for Women in Business, and Breast Cancer Wellness Magazine.

She is passionate about lending hope, inspiration, and empowerment through her writings and spoken words for those who have fallen, lost on their path and questioning, why me, who am I now, and why am I here I do this by sharing my story of abuse, thriving through breast cancer four times, losing her law career and practice, her newly remodeled home, her husband, and her identity of “who I thought I was”.