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When You Throw Yourself A Launch Party
I’m struggling to put into words all that transpired Saturday night at my launch party. It is a night I will never forget and a night my heart will likely never recover from in the best of ways.
How do I put into words all the love that was lavished on me from a diverse group of friends?
How do I capture the beautiful connections that took place amongst strangers meeting for the first time?
Heck, how do I show you pictures of the incredible event when no one had their phones out the entire night?
I honestly can’t remember the last time I’ve experienced an evening like I did last night. So many beautiful people, so many connections, and so much love – it almost seemed like a dream but it wasn’t. It was my life!
I took a bold move and threw myself a freakin launch party. Who throws themselves a party?
Well, this girl does apparently.
2017 was a weird, heavy, bizarre year that led to some pretty monumental shifts in my life. As a result, 2018 really felt like a rebirth to me – a new beginning with new goals and new intentions. I could have kept those goals and intentions to myself, but I felt this urge to make it a communal event. And so I did.
It all started with my photographer pausing during my photo shoot and saying, “So are you going to have a launch party?” And I thought, “That’s it! I’m going to take these dreams and intentions of mine and throw a freakin party!”
So I contacted Heather, my amazing professional organizer, and asked her if she would help me throw this party, and she said yes(!). And by her saying yes it made me think my idea was kind of legit. It’s like part of me thought I was maybe a little crazy to throw my own party, but when a dear friend of yours says YES to your idea, you start to think maybe you’re not that crazy! (or maybe you’re both a little crazy 🙂 But maybe that’s exactly what this world needs – a few more people crazy enough to say yes to their dreams!).
And that’s how this whole party got started:
a photographer, a professional organizer, and me.
So we dreamed and planned and budgeted and shopped for this dream party of mine.
I couldn’t believe this was actually going to happen!
The big night came and two of my dear friends came early to help set up, and when we finished, I couldn’t believe how beautiful everything looked. White lights, gorgeous handmade orbs, fancy drinks, colorful spread of food, and a beautiful venue. With five minutes to spare, we poured ourselves drinks, cheered ourselves on our hard work, and waited for the guests to arrive.
People trickled in and then people seemed to pour in. Before I knew it, the room was full of life and laughter coming from all these lovely people. Every now and then I would pause and just look around the room and think, “I can’t believe these people showed up for me. How did I get so lucky??”
It was humbling and exhilarating – seeing in a tangible way the love I seem to always be searching for. I realized I don’t need to search for it – because it’s right here! And it’s been here all along. <– That’s something I’m taking with me into 2018.
When a friend of mine asked me how I knew all these people, I realized I wasn’t able to say, “Oh, these are all my church friends” or “These are all my work friends”. This was an eclectic group of people from all parts of my life, people like:
- An employee from my local co-op
- The one friend I keep in touch with from high school
- A woman who hosted a Trades of Hope party who also brought her dear friend
- My queer tour guide (a good friend of mine who’s been SO helpful in welcoming me into and teaching me how to navigate queer spaces)
- A mom I met in a mom’s group 7 years ago
- Two fellow birth doulas
- My awesome neighbors
- Professors from my seminary
- Several of my social media followers
- And MORE
Every part of my life seemed to be represented at this party, and it was breath-taking to see them all come together this one night. The fact they decided to SHOW UP for me even though they wouldn’t know the majority of the people at the party showed love to me in a life-altering way.
My guests were brave with their love, and I’m not sure I’ll quite ever recover.
The night ended with me sharing my heart, explaining the reasons behind this party, and the hope and the vision I have for 2018. I then drew 3 names for three beautiful prizes of products that have changed my life. And everyone left with homemade bath salts and a tea light candle as a reminder to do self-care and to keep shining their light.
It was an incredible night.
The following morning I woke up to a bunch of loving texts from those who came to the party, and I’m sharing some of them here as a way to try to capture the essence of that night. I want to remember this moment in time for the rest of my life.
- “Happy Reborn Day!!! Proud of you and so happy I could be part of your day!” – N
- “I haven’t had that much fun and felt so me in a long time. Thank you for sharing your heart and your tribe with me. It meant so much to be invited and be called part of your tribe. Bless you!!” – B
- “Hey girl! How are you today? I hope you’re rejoicing because you killed it last night. So very very proud of you!! It was a smashing success.” – H
- “You have my mind racing like a gerbil in a cage! So many things I want to start this year with my homeless outreach. When you were talking it resonated with me SO much. Everything from looking for a “tribe” to really living my truth to crushing my goals. THANK YOU!!” – T
As John and I processed the party the following day, I realized that Saturday night’s event IS THE WORK I AM CALLED TO DO. My calling is to bring people together from all walks of life and equipping them with the tools to go back to their communities and help make the world a more beautiful place. And that’s what happened Saturday night! While I thought I was launching my new year and new career, I was also LIVING THE LIFE I AM CALLED TO LIVE. So it wasn’t just a one night event after all, but the beginning of a lifelong calling and commitment to continue this work in my everyday life and maybe even continue throwing these parties (party #2, anyone??:).
So here’s to a new year.
Here’s to throwing ourselves a party, dammit!
And to opening our eyes to the love that’s been around us all along.
(P.S. Have you checked out my new website?? Buh-bye messybeauty.com and Hello nikolemitchell.com! It’s freakin gorgeous! And all to the credit of my amazing friend and web developer Micah Murray. Make sure to subscribe because then you can get pretty emails from my pretty website:).
[Featured photo: Andrew Knechel on Unsplash]