I moved to Louisiana in 2002. My entire life had been spent on the East Coast where almost all of my very close family still lived. As my marriage fell apart the distance seemed to grow. Although my sister called me every day, I was without the support that comes from one’s family. Luckily I had met some incredible women here in New Orleans. One particular friend watched me slowly deteriorate along with my marriage. She waited until still could tell I could not hold on anymore and took my hand and said, “We have you.” She worked with my sister to guide me through all the steps that needed to done. I was scared, overwhelmed, and frozen, but they kept me moving forward.
The summer after my separation was my 35 birthday. My sister organized a trip to the beach and invited all my closest friends who lived all over the country. When we all arrived in Florida, my sister had shirts made for all my friends that said “TEAM EMILY” and one for me that just said “EMILY”. Coming from an athletic background, the word TEAM had major significance for me. These amazing women had my back. They were not going to let me fall, give up, or ever feel alone. They were my people. And they are still my TEAM. Then my TEAM grew.
My lawyers have become strong members, as well as therapists, colleagues, and other women who had walked similar paths and felt compelled to join me. My TEAM is large and strong. And I have not quit. Nor will I ever. I am strong, better, and ready to help other women develop their TEAMs so that they also understand that with a multitude of friends, professionals, and family behind them – they will make it through this tough life transition and their TEAM will be there to celebrate!