Hello, I am Stef and I'm OK

I haven't always been OK. I have struggled a lot over the years. I lived in the UK for a year, which was fabulous, but I was also deeply homesick. I worked for a theatre company for ten years, living my dream of being a professional stage actress, but I was also exhausted and felt trapped in a demanding job that I didn't know how to leave. I yearned for fairytale love in my 20s, but settled in a loveless marriage. After a sad and painful divorce and debilitating depression as a result, I finally left my job and my spouse and moved home with my parents. 

 

I didn't meet my true love until I was in my mid-30s. I moved home because my mom was diagnosed with young onset Alzheimer's, and I felt I needed to spend every minute I could with her while I still had her. Now I watch her fade away everyday and have lived in constant grief for years. I often feel very far from "OK". 

But here's the interesting thing... for years my social media looked so happy! Doesn't everybody's?!

We all put this facade out there of our smiling selfies and our blissful relationships.

When someone asks how we are, we answer, "I'm fine." So through all my ups and downs,

my goal now is honesty. If you are going to ask me how I am, please be prepared for an honest answer. 

I read this great book recently called A Lamp in the Darkness. It really helped me to put perspective to my struggles. Maybe not everyone is trying to raise a baby while their mom is dying young from Alzheimer's. Maybe not everyone has hit rock bottom and had to start over. But guess what? Everyone everywhere has felt pain, loss, sadness, grief. They all come to us differently but to be human, we will all experience both joy and sorrow. 

This made me feel far less alone in the world. This realization also made it easier to love myself and to love others. And it helped me realize that I really am OK. I will survive the struggles, the ups and downs, and I'll come out OK in the end. I hope to help other moms, women, and caregivers to know that they are OK.

A major life passion for me is loving kindness. I have been truly inspired over the last decade by the teachings of Radiant Jane, a holistic life coach and retreat leader. Her book A Heart of Gold: Lessons on the Path of Loving Kindness is full of useful meditations and journaling prompts and is my sweet, little companion that lives happily on my nightstand. Radiant Jane has been a mentor for me. She has shown me such grace and leads by example with a rich life full of loving kindness. It is a lifelong journey to love self, others, and the world, and I love my journey.

 

This is a judgment free zone, and I hope you will come to understand that I see you, and you are OK

We may make different choices. We may take different paths in our lives, but we are all doing the best we can with what we have, and ultimately we don't need to compare ourselves or compete. And it's all going to be OK! 

Stef O'Keefe

Founder & CEO

I am a writer, wife, stay-at-home mom, daughter, and caregiver for my mom who is on in-home hospice. I work from home. I love to read, sing, and cook plant-based foods. My degree is in theatre and music. I just attended a life changing meditation retreat in Italy.

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