Fuck "It All": Modern Women Redefining It All

This Coming Out - It’s More Than Sexuality, It’s Individuality with Linda Fruits

June 15, 2022 IT ALL Media Episode 56
Fuck "It All": Modern Women Redefining It All
This Coming Out - It’s More Than Sexuality, It’s Individuality with Linda Fruits
Show Notes Transcript

Happy Pride Month!!! Today we welcome one of the funniest, honest, beautiful and real women on Instagram. Linda Fruits is the founder of the content company and creator of the Instagram account @FruitsOfMotherhood that covers the sweet, sour, and sometimes rotten fruits that motherhood bears .

The catalyst for this ep was a post and blog Linda shared in August 2021, called, "Why my husband and I are calling it quits - even though we still love each other."

She says,"It took me 32 years to figure out what TikTok uncovered in a matter of minutes. I am attracted to women. Admitting that to myself was hard and then telling my husband was even harder...

Being attracted to the same sex never occurred to me until TikTok showed me a specific type of woman I had never really been exposed to before. And I felt something I had never felt before...

If you told me six months ago I would be writing this, I might've laughed in your face, but deep down inside, maybe I always knew it was coming. My content is not going to change. I'm still a mother who struggles every day, and my marriage jokes will also be the same since we're all living together under one roof...

My mission and everything I do is do bring acceptance to anyone who is feeling the same. All our differences and similarities make us who we are. This is who I am, and there is no changing it. Safe to say I'm even extra fruity now.

Here's to being fruity as hell, because as Linda says so beautifully, this coming out - it's more than sexuality, it's individuality.

Hit play, and dive in.
- K+K

Kacie:

Happy pride month, y'all this is Kacie Lett Gordon, the host of the Fuck "It All" podcast co-founder of IT ALL Media. If you don't know about us going over itallmedia.co/join. Get on the newsletter. Don't miss a thing. This episode with Linda Fruits and next week's event with Denayja Reese which is going to be a live podcast recording -tune in if you can, if you're in Atlanta, come join us at the Lola. Again, head over to itallmedia.co for all those details. We are so, so thrilled to be celebrating these women telling their stories, Linda telling her story of coming out. Denayja telling her story of healing through trauma and addiction and grief. These women are they're everyday women. They're you, they're me, they're our sisters, our mothers, our friends. But they have these extraordinary stories, and I'm so grateful that they're using their gift of story, their gift of their experiences to share it with everyone here on the Fuck "It All" podcast. Before we jump in today's episode, I'm going to ask a favor for everyone. So if you listened to this podcast, I want to know who you are. That's the beautiful thing about podcasts and from a business perspective, the really hard thing. We don't know your names. We don't know where you are. So if you were listening to today's episode, do us a favor, screenshot this. And send us a note to hello@itallmedia.co or drop us an Instagram story or post. So we know who you are. I asked that because over the past two years, as we've started this podcast asking and answering the question, what does it mean to have it all? We have developed this incredible body of research that we are now bringing for the first time ever to a one month intensive the Define, Create, Own Roadmap. This course that we're developing is for the women who are building a life that we don't need to, or want to escape from. We designed this course for women in transition and specifically women who are interested in answering a calling for something more, even if they don't know what more means right now. This is for the women with a restless discontent for something more and a bias to create it. This is for women in transition, perhaps a triggering life event that is calling into focus, your values and future path. This could be work, life relationships, family COVID, et cetera. All right. I hope this is hyped you. I hope this will give you inspiration to head over to itallmedia.co/workshop If you were interested let us know who you are. Go sign up. We have a presale right now for Fuck "It All" listeners. The one- month intensive is going to be $1750, but if you are a listener and go sign up right now, you are locking it in for $1,000. That is you and me and Katie sitting down. It is hands on. It is a group of women who are here to inspire and walk with and hold each other accountable. I just can't say enough good things. The role that this, this kind of work has had in my own life. I will never be the same. And I just want to share that with all of you, because this is my life's work, right? Like this is I'm the living example. So today, go check out the Define, Create, Own Roadmap. I'm telling you for the women that this speaks to, it's going to be transformational. And happy pride month. We are so thrilled to be celebrating the LGBTQIA+ women and people and individuals in our life. This week we sit down with Linda Fruits, founder of content company and creator of the Instagram account @FruitsOfMotherhood. And next week, sitting down with a writer, author, producer, Denayja Reese. That is going to be an in real life- IRL event that will then be shared here on the podcast. All right, let's go. Hello, and welcome to the Fuck "IT ALL" Podcast for modern women redefining 'it all.' Linda, I see you giggling you like fuck as much as I do. I can tell.

Linda:

I do, makes me giggle.

Kacie:

The most evocative word, right? It didn't just cover so many things. I'm going to give a little bio help our listeners understand who you are and why I had to sit down with you. Linda is the founder of the content company and Instagram account @FruitsofMotherhood. If you're not following it, go do it right now. We'll hold. That is her real last name. And, it covers the sweet sour and sometimes rotten fruits that motherhood bears In following Linda and watching her create real funny, honest, and sometimes painful content. Isn't that motherhood and womanhood in a nutshell? About the ups and downs of modern womanhood, modern motherhood. I knew I had to get her on the show. A few Instagram DMS later, cause that's the world we live in, we are here. In August 2021, you shared a post and a blog -you all can go read it- why my husband and I are calling it quits even though we still love each other. A quick highlight from the post. She says,"It took me 32 years to figure out what TikTok uncovered in a matter of minutes. I am attracted to women. Admitting that to myself was hard and then telling my husband was even harder. Being attracted to the same sex never occurred to me until TikTok showed me a specific type of woman I had never really been exposed to before. And I felt something I had never felt before. If you told me six months ago I would be writing this, I might've laughed in your face, but deep down inside, maybe I always knew it was coming. My content is not going to change. I'm still a mother who struggles every day, and my marriage jokes will also be the same since we're all living together under one roof." Holy shit. Let's talk about that. "My mission and everything I do is do bring acceptance to anyone who is feeling the same. All our differences and similarities make us who we are. This is who I am, and there is no changing it. Safe to say I'm even extra fruity now." The last line was so you

Linda:

It's so nice hearing you read it. Like that was beautiful.

Kacie:

When I read it, you know, your content leans funny. And when I saw that come up, I'm like, okay, there's something here. And I'm always fascinated just, because I don't know about you, I don't know a woman or mother who isn't nuanced, like...

Linda:

yeah.

Kacie:

We are so many things that I've struggled with that and shared it openly of how do you be sexy one night having a glass of wine, feeling yourself, but waking up at seven to then be touched and needed, and also trying to build a career and feel independent. And when you shared that, there was just something, I mean, you're, you're a beautiful writer, but you shared so honestly about your experiences. Talk to me about -I would say that's a pretty big Fuck "It All" moment, right? Like whatever the perception of it all was you called it into question and then you publicly shared it, which I think invites a lot of dialogue, critics, probably support as well. Just talk to me about that post, that moment, and how it came to be.

Linda:

So like figuring out that something was off was the first confusion, right? I have all these things. And I'm not bragging, but I had the marriage, we had the house, we had the kids, I finished school, I'm doing something I love. And I'm like, what? And, I love of being a mom right? But what am I missing? Why am I feeling off? Like, why is my marriage off? I thought that my oldest is four, so let's just say four years. Right? Like I thought that I was tired. I thought that because I was a stay at home mom, I was being touched out all the time. I put my kids in daycare. I was like, you know, grabbing my own life again. And I'm sleeping every night. I'm not being touched all day. Like all these excuses that I kept building up in my head as to why we weren't connecting anymore, or still struggling to connect, they were gone. And I was like, okay, lo and behold, TikTok was like, well, I know what the problem is.

Kacie:

Yeah, I need to know what are you like sitting there scrolling? You're like, ha "This is... Oh DAMN, Look at that." I need to know what the moment was.

Linda:

Okay. So like of course, TikTok you know, it shows you what you watch, not necessarily what you interact with. Right. So I was seeing like "Hot Lesbian TikTok, and I would send these girls videos, to my friends. And I'm like, she's hot, right? Like it's not just me, like nothing's happening. Everything's okay. And they're like, yeah, she's hot. And I just kept scrolling, you know? And like days turned into weeks and all of a sudden, my "for you" page was just filled with these beautiful, funny lesbians. And I'm like, my friends are sending me TikToks as well. And they're like, have like hot firefighters. Well, like, why am I on lesbian TikTok and you're on firefighter TikTok. Like, what happened? How do I get on firefighterTikTok? I don't know what's going on. And so I realized I always identified also as a demisexual, which kind of means that you have to get to know someone to like them. And that was true for the first half of my life. Like, only dated people that I was like friends with. I needed to build up to that. I was never a one night stand kind of girl, right? I was serial monogamous. And so also TikTok, like I had a crush on someone I had never met before and I stopped watching the videos. It was in my head constantly. And so, yeah, that's when I was like, okay, maybe I need to tell my husband.

Kacie:

Yeah. So we talk a lot about on the show and just with women there's symptoms and there's problems. Right. And I think we start feeling something off, and you just go through problem solving mode. You're like, I'm going to take this symptom away. I'm tired, am I sleeping well? New motherhood, total mind fuck. Especially if you have two under four, you've been in a season in itself.

Linda:

Yeah. And like, we both felt that that's what the problem was.

Kacie:

Yeah. Dads as well or any co-parenting situation. And so I, and then I love that you were curious enough to say what is not right, because I think so many of us just it's just life, listen, it's hard sometimes it's not good, but I liked that you were curious enough and then somebody told me recently, thank you for taking yourself seriously. And I thought that was such a cool way of saying it. Because as women we a lot of times brush our emotions, our feelings, there's like deep down things... For you to say like, nah, something's up. And being able to listen to yourself, it's a gift. to be able, I mean, Hey, TikTok shout out.

Linda:

And it's funny because for example, I'm a mom, I'm not going out to, gay bars, right? Like how else do you figure this out? Right. I don't even watch that much TV. How else do you uncover, right. It's just, it's your daily life. Like how, whatever comes up, there's no right or wrong way to find answers. Just as long as you find them.

Kacie:

Yeah. So when like, give me, can you share timelines? I think that's something that often times we hear like, and then I realized it was gay and I came out and everything's great. And it's like, okay, well, there is some like real shit that went down during that. So I want to hear what was the reckoning period? How did you then broach that conversation with your husband, your partner, and begin to explore this other part of yourself while also occupying a lot of simultaneous roles?

Linda:

Yeah. So at first obviously telling my husband we'll just start there. I was so scared and I didn't realize it was going to come to that, right? Like I just thought I could casually say to him, Hey, like I'm attracted to women, and he's cool, and he would be like, okay, cool. That's it, right? I couldn't let the words leave my mouth. I'm like following him around the house like a little puppy. I knew we had this day together one day and I was like, today I have to do it so that way we can like talk about it all day. I'm not trying to be like, I'm a lesbian and he runs to work, right?

Kacie:

I mean, I feel like that would be a lot of unsaid things that right.

Linda:

Yeah, and questions come up and I wanted to be present. I wanted to tackle this beast together. Cause we really do make a great team at the end of the day. It's not like I hate him, like the only thing missing was this piece -the intimacy. And so I'm following him around the house, like a little puppy and I'm like, okay, like, just like I'm saying it in my head over and over again, it just couldn't come out. And then he goes into the bathroom and closes the door and I was like, Oh, he locked it or something because the kids always busted to go to the shower or whatever. So I was like, I need to talk to you. He's like, okay. I'm like, can you please come out? And of course he's like standing there naked, he's about to take a shower. So I take a towel and I drape it over his shoulders. And I'm like, I can't have a serious conversation with you standing like I'm sitting and he's standing. I'm

Kacie:

I can't make eye contact with your penis while you tell me this.

Linda:

Right? So, I'm like covering like a sheet or blanket, like from his towel.

Kacie:

Oh my God.

Linda:

I'm like, okay, I realized over the last couple weeks that I must be attracted to women because, you know, TikTok, yada yada, yada. And at that point, I just was saying to him that I think I'm bisexual because given my history of dating only men and married to one, I must be bisexual. And so he was totally okay with that. I kept reassuring him that I didn't want anything to change. I'm happy. I love our house. I love our children. I love our lives. I just was like, I want to tell you this so that way we can laugh about it because it's the kind of person

Kacie:

I am.

Linda:

And I want it to like, share the TikToks and the jokes and all these like funny things. And to bring us closer because I obviously realized that I was hiding something. And I was like, all right, it was slowly pulling us apart, but that's not what I wanted. So I um, told him and he was totally cool with it. And at first he was like, well, you know, like, I don't want you to not experience this part of you. I'm like, I was terrified. I'm like, no, I just want to tell you that's it. End of story. And then like a day or two later, I'm like, okay, well I kinda do want to know. I kind of do. And he's like, okay, well then let's figure out what you want. Like, there was a lot of this uncovering of... I have a really, really close best friend. And I've talked about this with my therapist, and so what we don't realize is the roles that people play in our lives, how they fill certain areas of us. And that's friends, family, husband, children, right? Like all across the board. Like we need different things from different people. And so my best friend of I don't even know 20 years, we were like inseparable and I think that she had always filled that female role that I needed. We were extremely close. Anybody who knows us in real life knows that we were like inseparable. And so she moved and I had children, and our lives kind of separated a little bit. And so all of a sudden I was missing that level of like, understanding like someone who just knows me. And obviously my husband knows me, but like, to me it's different right, with, with a woman. And so I was like, all right, fine. we figured this out together- me and my husband. Maybe I'm looking for something more romantic. Obviously that was platonic. And I've told her all this too, she, she gets it. And so I was like, maybe I do need that.. And he's like, okay, cool. Like we downloaded the dating apps together. I was going to try to date someone, you know, And my husband obviously is like the most wonderful human in the whole world to even be open to this, right?

Kacie:

Right I was sitting there really just thinking about what a partnership you all must have as people, as humans for you to share something that I think a lot of, especially male partners, any partner could feel incredibly insecure about, could feel threatened by, could want to put out your light in order to make them feel more secure. I think that's really beautiful and it speaks to just what you've shared at least on social media on the kind of dynamic that you all have even after this, reckoning. And so shout out to the good men out there, right? Like there is something so beautiful about him showing up for you in that way.

Linda:

For sure. And like he was raised in a, in a way that I should have known that he would have been cool. Like we're obviously really open to a lot of things. But still that like nervousness of like disappointment, right? Like I didn't want to disappoint him, but anyways, that, that, that on another day. What women do, right ,out of not disappointing...

Kacie:

Yes.

Linda:

And so, anyways, I told him like, obviously my Fruits of Motherhood had account is a business thing, and so he has a login and all that good stuff. And I was like, you know, I am going to be talking to people because that's how I process information. I'm going to talk to people who have been in similar situations. I've seen them all over TikTok, on Instagram. And I just want to hear it from someone else who's been through the same thing. Like that's the whole basis of my Instagram, right? Like we need, we need that, like "Me Toos." And so I was like, you're probably not going to want to read everything I'm going to say because it's gonna feel... like I've already told him everything But he doesn't need to read it with me talking to someone else. Anyway, he saw message. And of course I don't blame him. Like I told him not to because I wanted not to hurt him, but I can't blame him. I would have done the same thing. And so he read some messages and basically I was talking to another mom who had been through something similar and, how did she know that she wasn't bisexual? I think the thing she was telling me really kind of opened my eyes, you know, and I was like, well, shit. And so he calls me and of course he's crying and I already knew. I already knew what he saw. And so he was like, well, what does this mean for us? Where do we go from here? And I'm like, why don't you come home? Let's sit and let's talk about this because it's not a normal divorce or breaking up, like we love each other. I have always loved him at the most capacity I ever could, right, like that never changed. I realized also that all my other relationships ended the same way. Okay. Like every single one once the honeymoon phase is over, like intimacy for me is gone.

Kacie:

Yeah,

Linda:

The connection is gone. And it took us longer to reach that point because we had kids and because we were best friends before we started dating too. So we had a solid foundation of being together and working together and so he's like, what do we do from here? I don't want to miss out on my kids every single day. I'm like me neither. I'm like, we don't have to, you don't have to move out. Right.

Kacie:

Our breakup or separation doesn't have to look like anybody else's.

Linda:

Exactly!. And we make a great team. He cooks, I watch the kids, we clean, like we do this, this dance every day and that's working. It's just other things when the lights go off that weren't. So, I was like, why, why don't you stay here? I want you to, this is our home, our children. And to be honest, it's easier on us and our kids versus having to move them around. And I, and I understand that this is not available to everyone. I always want to make that a point, right. This is from two mature adults realizing that we want this more than we want to separate. And I know that usually in divorces, there's always that one that can't buck up. So we both decided okay, this is going to be hard especially like dating moving forward. We're going to have to have a lot of hard conversations. I don't think we've ever talked as much as we have in the last, four months. I don't even know the timeframe anymore, But because we have to, because when you get complacent in a marriage and comfortable, you stop talking about things and listening, right? You can say whatever you want and the other person hears it, but they, you know, they don't hear it. And so all of a sudden, like not only was our friendship being put on the front burner, we were like really hashing out our emotions and how things made us feel. And anyways we decided we were obviously going to stay living together and just do the damn thing still, just see other people. Obviously some people think that's weird. And I think once you have kids too, you can kind of see, like, this does benefit them more than it would us.

Kacie:

I think it's really interesting because in what you're explaining and the sense of where traditional separations and listen to each their own, but you would have to separate who you are as a... Like your romantic needs would then override your family, interpersonal, friendship, ,mother, and I think that that's this dichotomy and anytime we are in a marriage, relationship and go through that, it's almost like the romantic has to then shift everything else. And I really like that you all are redefining what works for you. What are, you know, if you and your husband, your partner at the middle what are the things that we feel supported with? What are the kinds of relationships, friendships, childcare, household responsibilities career. To me, that's a very, I mean, we talk about modern womanhood, but that's really a modern family-hood, too. And I think being able to have the language and the capacity and the space and commitment to talk that through that is not easy. It is far more to put your head in the sand, just, you know, uh, I mean, God, it's, it's in you being wholly yourself, he was caught in some of that turmoil, right? Like you being yourself, hurt him. And that I know any time I've done that, even if it's not personal to the other person, it can't help it feel that way.

Linda:

He had, like, I would say the first two weeks of course he's blaming himself and so, we would talk about it because that's an emotion that he's feeling that is not true. Right? And we talk about it together and he's like, it makes me feel better when we talk about it. Obviously it's amazing how real communication can almost make the feelings disappear because it's like the reassurance. Obviously I can talk a lot and so, you know, I'm. He can say something and he might say it wrong. And I'm like, let's talk about that a little bit more. Let's make sure that you understand that, like I do love you. You're a wonderful person. You are the father of my children. You are my forever life partner. And I want us to be good. And when you fight in a marriage, sometimes you're just like, you want to be mad and you want to fight.

Kacie:

It's an outlet for everything. It's not about the thing. It's about all the other things for me, it was over a coffee pot one day. So yeah, I.

Linda:

And you do that, right? But right now, what we're going through is that I'm no longer holding him accountable for that emotional outlet. Like, he's not giving me what I need, you know, like I was blaming him. Right. I was, And I was like, well, shit, it's me.

Kacie:

That's really, really hard. I mean, I know your situation is nuanced and unique and not all our listeners are going to be like, yeah, that's one for one me but I can't tell you how many times. I think a marriage is these tensions of modern womanhood of what a good wife or good mother should be, you know, and a lot of that is putting your own needs and wants down, like tampering them down. Especially when you talk about intimacy or sexual, you know, that's just not a narrative that's out there. And so there was something a couple of months ago I was talking about it. I kept feeling less than in our marriage. I had left a full-time job. I was building this new business and I felt almost indebted and I thought that it was my husband doing it like him. And then one day I had realization he's not better than, you're acting less than you were doing

Linda:

You were telling yourself that. Yeah. Yeah.

Kacie:

And then I think that's really hard then yourself accountable, forgive yourself and move forward, there's that you want to hold on and just continue to beat the shit out of yourself. And that's not helping anybody.

Linda:

It's so true. The intimacy thing, like you said, I was pressuring myself literally for the last four years. Like we were having a little bit of trouble before kids, right. But it was just, it was something that I wasn't honest with myself. And so, yeah, I kept saying like, I should be having sex with my husband right now, like every single night. And I was, he was not pressuring me. He not once, right. But I was torturing myself. I'm like the shittiest wife ever. I don't want it. I don't want them to touch me. Like I was just nothing.

Kacie:

Yeah.

Linda:

And so it was me, but like for good reason, right. Like I just had to figure out what it was. But I know a lot of women also feel the pressures because of them. And that's just that wasn't my case. So I knew it was just me again, blaming.

Kacie:

So I'm curious, we talk about it a lot on the show, but as women, you had your primary relationship with your husband, but you also have community around you, I imagine. Friends, other family. How did that look? Like? I find that sometimes it's not our immediate people. It's those that are one degree that are like, wait, that doesn't make sense to me. I don't know if that happened to you, but I'm just curious. How have you then began to broach conversations with that, you know, one degree out community.

Linda:

So it's kind of funny. Like we have two people in our family that just can't, can't understand it. Right. And it's so funny because I'm like, if my husband who it immediately affects, right? Like it affects him more. And us, if we can figure this out, you guys better get your shit together. But an even further away because of my social media account. Those people who are like, you're fucking up your life, all this stuff. Like I can tell you XYZ of comments. And I'm like if my husband understands and we're good, I think you got to do some soul searching my friend.

Kacie:

I think that is probably the biggest gift we could give anybody listening. I find that when people really... It's one thing to have an adjustment period, but they really feel like confronted by your decisions,

Linda:

Yeah. Yeah.

Kacie:

It is a comment on them, not you.

Linda:

Yeah. And it's hard to see that, right? Like it's really quick to be like take it personal obviously. But for one, I don't even know the person. Two, they don't even know. Me. Like they actually don't know me either. So. Yeah, that doesn't matter. And then of course it hurts, right? It's like that fight or flight, you know, like we, we care.

Kacie:

I've been doing some work lately of really sitting with it, you know? Especially, I think, I mean, you have a public account where you're sharing and I, I find sometimes it's easier for me to share really what I'm feeling and thinking publicly than it is in those intimate one-on-one relationships, because the ability to write the ability to put it out, it's almost like a marketing message more than it is like you're revealing your most deep seeded things. And I have a question. I asked a lot of women on the show- I'd love to hear your answer- is would you rather be adored or respected?

Linda:

Definitely, respected. I think respected was my answer starting when I came out, because up until that point, I was doing everything to be adored. And I didn't realize if you would have asked me a year ago, if I'm a people pleaser, I would be like what the fuck are you talking about. Yeah, but I was, I was, I did all the things .I read somewhere that around 10 years old is when you learn to people please. Like that's, when you start forgetting who you are, what you like, and you do what other people like. And so to me, I'm like, well, damn for the last 20 years, I have been people pleasing. And of course I was doing stuff I liked and I'm still kind of like loud and stuff at the same time, but the real deep you that, that part that you have to respect in yourself was definitely like this year.

Kacie:

And I think to me, like a lot of times you have to know what the other side looks like. Like you stepping into this, knowing that you may upset people and that you had to be brave enough to take yourself seriously, say it to your partner. You now saw what it was like to be respected as the first and only, only in contrast. Can you see all the other things, you know, prior you may have been like, "Oh my God, respected all the way," but now being able to really see what that means and there's different degrees, right? It's as you were talking about the 10 year old threshold, you're a mother of two and there's a quote by Glennon Doyle. I'm sure I'm not getting it spot on, but she talks about motherhood and she said it's more important to be a model than a martyr.

Linda:

Yes. That's like the first, uh, first couple of pages. I just read it.

Kacie:

Yes. And it was, it was one of the things they, I read it when my daughter was probably eight months old or so it was mid pandemic when the whole world was just like, what the fuck is going on, you know? And so, when I read that and a lot of my girlfriends and I have talked about it. We started then really looking at our own models of motherhood, not only just like mass media and what's pushed, but even in our own lives, you know, the mothers that we saw. And so often we feel like I got to do it for the kids. We got to stay together for the kids. And then you look and what does that perpetuate? So I'm curious as you began this journey, your kids are young, so I'm sure there's only a certain level of conversation, but how are you looking at how do we be a model, versus just taking one for the team.

Linda:

I think a lot about this, obviously, because I am an over-thinker so like the message that we're sending to our kids. And a lot of people may not agree with us because of, what I'm going to say, but it's okay to leave any situation at any time. And I know when it comes to marriage, people get all hot and bothered about that kind of shit. But you know what? I wouldn't want my kids to stay in a marriage if they were in my shoes and live the rest... I didn't carry them for nine months, get gestational diabetes, breastfeed their little cute faces for them to not be happy and live their life as fully as possible. I wouldn't want them to stay. I don't care if they have kids or not cause people get upset about that too. But being a happy parent, a fulfilled parent, is way better than staying somewhere where it's not working. And I'm not saying like you have a bad day. Okay, bye. We're getting a divorce. Right? You try to work on it and you give it some grace. And if you're miserable, like I think of these people who think longevity is the prize in life with marriage, with work, with whatever, no, like say no to whatever doesn't serve you and find what does, because the way I feel in the last couple months is like reborn with excitement for life, you know? And I would want that for my best friend, for my children, for my husband. I especially wanted it for him. I wanted him to be touched and loved in the way he deserves that I can't give him,

Kacie:

Oh, there's so much there. My sister always says to me there's not a prize for suffering the most,

Linda:

Yes! I say that all the time on my Instagram for my mom's like, the motherhood started this for me. It was the start of breaking down concepts that I wasn't living up to, I wasn't the perfect mom that I thought I was going to be. That was like the baby, the baby, beginning of me as a person. And it just turned into like also in a marriage. I was like, I don't want to fucking cook. I don't want to fucking clean. Like, we worked out like a good, good arrangement. You know, I'm not going to be a fucking housewife. I'm not like I just, I have no desire to do that. And like, same thing with stay at home mom. Like that was a big pat for me to be like, this doesn't fit, I can't do it.

Kacie:

I brave in this life though, to try it on and be bold enough to say it doesn't fit. So often we feel like if I tried it, it means I got to do it. And if I don't, then I'm a giant failure and fuck up. And. love the idea that your kid's really challenged. My daughter was the same thing for me. I was driving home after hating my job, really feeling unfulfilled. I thought it was postpartum; and there was some of that going on. But when I wanted, I wanted to drive my car off the road and I thought, what a shame if this was her life, like all this resource opportunity, privilege, like all these things that are amazing. And what a shame. If it came down to, she didn't want to disappoint someone over a job that she could find another one, like what a joke.

Linda:

That's just the whole thing is I think about myself through my children's eyes, like I have to lead by example. And that's the scary part is like leaving a job, being a stay at home mom and be like, oh shit, this is not what I wanted.

Kacie:

Yeah.

Linda:

That's the beautiful thing about life. You can just keep going. There's always new opportunities.

Kacie:

I'm curious, we've recently been working on concepts around this idea of living in the mess. And I think that a lot of times when we talk about change or transition or leaving what doesn't work, it feels like it's all rainbows and unicorns. I have not had any transition of any kind, even when they're positive that doesn't also come without lot of pain, a lot of mess, a lot of uncertainty, lack of confidence, struggle in relationships. And I'm curious for you, how do you balance or do you sitting in the mess? You can't run out of it, right? You got to sit in it and feel all the things I'm sure there was grief and anger and sadness, all the things that would come with the end of any relationship and, but also excitement and expectancy for what could come. How do you do that? Do you have a practice or do you have any thoughts around just recognizing that it's not all rainbows, you're going to have some shitty days, but like just keep trucking because they're temporary.

Linda:

Exactly. I have a perfect example. Actually, my husband went on a date and the girl, he was actually the first one to go on a date, which like in hindsight, I think was really the way to do it because if it was me going on the first date, the emotions afterwards.. Like I already threw a stick into the wheel. Right. So it's his turn. So he went on a date and he told me that she wanted to meet at the hotel and I was like, okay, time to put your big girl panties on it. We're doing the damn thing. Right. You know? And so it, I was fine. Like, I was happy for him. I wanted him to go. I helped him get dressed. He went. And so, but the next day I felt just a little gross now. Right? Like kind of weird. I'm like, I'm not jealous about like the intimacy part, because that is like my freedom that I no longer am responsible for. And so, I couldn't like look him in the eyes. I was just like in this weird position, but I was like, okay, I need to go. Because I was in front of my kids in front of him, I was like, I need to process. So I just like ran away, taught yoga and I was in there, and I don't know if you have like a mania song of the week, like, whatever, like really gets you going. But my mania song of the week came on in this yoga studio and it was like pitch black in there, thankfully. And I'm just like sobbing. I don't know where it's my favorite song, but it was like, I am where I'm supposed to be. You know, like that was like my little sign and like that song didn't belong in a yoga session. Like it was just really a big, big sign for me. And I was feeling the feelings and what really I realized was happening is that for the first time it was my turn to grieve for the marriage. Because up until that point, nothing had changed for me. We were still being friends, like that everything was the same. It all of a sudden was like, oh, okay, this is happening. You're doing it. And I realized that I was really jealous of him staying out and not being there in the morning with the kids. I was jealous of his hotel stay not what happened. And I was like, well, damn girl. So I booked a hotel so I can go out and go have fun with my friends. Right. I needed that. I realized I kept questioning cause I was nervous about feeling nervous, but thankfully it was more of like it's a first and it was painful, but you know what? 48 hours later, everything was back to normal. It went away. The pain was temporary. I was feeling some shit and I was processing and we're allowed to do that, to experience them having these feelings doesn't mean that like, we can't do this. I kept reminding him; he's like, I'm sorry, I didn't want to make you upset. I'm like, no, no, no. I told you to feel guilt at all, right? Like I'm just, this is new I'm processing and I, and I don't want you to feel bad for it. We just got to do this. Right. And it was I really feel like we grew a lot in that moment because realizing that pain doesn't mean it's doomed. Like, knowing that it was going to pass is like a really great thing. So now I feel like we can do anything we can get through this.

Kacie:

I keep saying to myself and to my husband, we're learning to be resilient. We're learning to be strong. And I think that the pain. If we can return to the times that we felt pain before, and remember that we're still standing here, there's, there's immense strength in that. And I think there's also something so beautiful that there was grief because it honored everything that you had and built together, right? It honors it in a way and it doesn't have to be jealousy or, you know, wanting that. A symptom of it might be like, "oh my God, did we make the wrong decision?" But the real thing is like, no, I'm just grieving the fact that this is a new experience for us. I'm being challenged in different ways of what was of honoring my own growth. Like I think that's such a beautiful little microcosm of this moment in both of your lives.

Linda:

Yeah, it was, it was a lot. And um, after like, you know, after a couple of days when I could like, look him in the eyes, I'd say, I'm so proud of us. You know?

Kacie:

Oh, yeah.

Linda:

I am, I'm proud of us because look what we're, we're doing it. We're doing what we wanted, you know? And it it's. Yeah, like you said, you stand in the mess. Like it's gonna be messy. Like life is messy. We don't learn if everything's just like hunky-dory. And also what you said about feeling, if I felt nothing at all, like, wouldn't that be weird, more weird? Right. Like I have to feel something. So I went, I went on a date except mine wasn't so dramatic. I went to dinner. And so his mind was racing. Right. But, you know, we didn't rip off that other bandaid yet. So.

Kacie:

How are you feeling like? I mean, one, I just imagined the idea, take the coming out part, but like dating again. That's such a transition when you've come from a long-term committed relationship, reentering that world, as well as this other layer. Like, how are you, where are you at with all of it?

Linda:

Like mentally, I want to be selfish as hell for like a year. I feel like for the first time, like this coming out, isn't it's more than just like sexuality. It's like for individuality, for me, like really speaking up for what I need, what I want. It's like breaking away from the mud, still the motherhood identity, I can still go out, have some drinks, shake my ass and be a great mom. I want to be selfish just for me, for what I need, what I want, period. Like I'm really focusing on me and it's more than just like dating. Like, I mean, it's still figuring that stuff out. Like I'm like I'm a baby all over again when it comes to this stuff.

Kacie:

Yeah, I don't know about you. I hate being bad at something like a beginner. Like I would be like the expert as fast as possible.

Linda:

Sure. And there's no fast track to that. Unfortunately.

Kacie:

And I also think. I was talking to someone recently. I can't remember if it was on the show or not, but I am never indulgent with self care. I'm always like, just good enough. I'm like, let's just get to like where I can survive. And I think there's something so beautiful about you being like, and I want to be like really selfish because you can't always be that in your life, especially when you're a parent to young children like Lord. And so for you to say, like, I'm giving myself this space to just be indulgent and get what I need, I think, is such. Gay straight, uh, woman, parent non-pay like that to me is a message of we all have the right to be selfish in what we need and be indulgent with that.

Linda:

And I think, especially after you have small children, this is like a road back to yourself is hard because the first couple of years you, you almost, it's really hard to be selfish. Right? My kids are finally at the age where. I can leave them for a weekend and not freak out the whole time.

Kacie:

Yep. yeah, It's actually enjoyable for you. I find that sometimes people are like, oh, just turn off. I'm like, but my mind doesn't. So I guess it can physically remove the situation, but mentally

Linda:

I'm still texting every five seconds. Are they, are they breathing? Are they living? Are they eating right? And it doesn't come right away, like I've had two trips just with my best friends, just about me again. And like what I said in the blog post I'm still a mom, like that comes first with this whole branding message. I'm a woman. Right. And like, so is anyone else who's straightened, no matter what, right. We are still women and we're still suffering through. What society wants us to be, and it doesn't matter your sexuality and like the message that I'm learning right now that I want every mom to experience is that you don't have to have a bad day to need a break.

Kacie:

Hmm. Oh, that's like, you don't need to completely crumble to just need a minute.

Linda:

Yeah. And, but like, that's the only time that we throw our hands up and we're like, like I got to go, I'm losing it. It doesn't have to come to that. Like this last trip

that I had with my friends,

Linda:

like I wasn't at my breaking point anymore. I mean the

previous trip Yeah,. Cause I

Linda:

was like, well, I got to get the fuck out of the house. I got to get away. But this one was it was my friend's birthday was her idea. We're going to go visit my other best friend. And it was The best thing I have done for myself in four years. And I want that for every single mom. It has nothing to do with sexuality, right? It's this journey to you. And it will look different for every single mom, but it's really important to ask and answer those questions within our selves.

Kacie:

just as you're talking about this, I think there's something really addicting -that such an intense word- but like when you start to taste some of your own power you just want to be abundant with that for everyone it's like, oh my God, there is a better way. Y'all it's like the freaking motherhood and womanhood gospel. Like doesn't have to be so painful. And I think there's, as we invite others, there's a couple of things we always say, when you live boldly, you invite others to do the same, right? You give permission even in your marriage and your family, you gave permission to say, if there's wants and needs that we have, this is a safe space to speak that. And we will work together and talk through it. That's beautifulfor any relationship! The second is the idea that when we step into owning our power, it is a virtuous cycle. We bring others along. It is no longer about our winning, losing me up here. You down there. No, there is a different way, and I've seen some sort of light or other, you know, other realm and I'm just want others to see it. And so as you talk about this, obviously I haven't known you in, in a pre life, but as I'm sitting here now, like you're glowing, you, you radiating positive energy and I just think it's such a beautiful, like you said, it doesn't have to be coming out for people to have these critical eruptions while still leading your life, occupying these multiple roles, whether it's career family, et cetera, just, I thank you for living boldly. Thank you for taking yourself seriously. And I think, you know, giving words and models of how someone might go through a process like this without it being the stereotypical you're terrible, your husband is the good one. Like you're redefining that. And I think for his participation in that too, it was just beautiful.

Linda:

Oh, my goodness. Yeah. I mean it couldn't have gone better and obviously I'm really thankful and lucky, but it took both of us to accept that we both deserve to be happy.

Kacie:

That's real love though. Isn't it like loving the other person, even at the detriment of yourself in some way.

Linda:

Absolutely. And, we want to stay in each other's lives, right? Like we don't hate

Kacie:

All right. I got some rapid fire. Are you

Linda:

ready? I'm ready. Wait, let me drink water. So I'm

Kacie:

Get you some water.

Linda:

I'm ready.

Kacie:

Women are told we get to have it all for you in this moment. What does having It all mean?

Linda:

It means whatever I want it to mean. Like I'll order Instacart on my groceries, so I don't have to go fucking grocery shopping. Like we have all the tools, right, to have it all, but you don't have to do it.

Kacie:

Yes, yes, yes. Yes. Tell me a time when you felt most in your power.

Linda:

I have to say, like I have these weeks, right. And I think this, this is a big week for me. Like, oh, this podcast is day. Today is a big day. I really feel recharged. And in my power because it's not so fresh, the wound, it's definitely healing. And I feel the most like me today, then I think I have in 20 years.

Kacie:

Finish the sentence for me when my power is shaken. When you're not feeling your self, like you are today. When my power is shaken, I,

Linda:

Sit in the bathtub and scroll through TikTok for too long.

Kacie:

That what the most honest answer we've got.

Linda:

Yeah, for sure.

Kacie:

For you the best part of being a woman.

Linda:

I want to say breaking rules, like really deeply. I feel so passionately about redefining what it means to be a woman that my friend was texting one of her like new mom friends. And she was like having a really hard time. I literally started sobbing. I don't even know her. It was like a two sentence, text message. I'm like, because I was there, right? She doesn't have to feel bad. I just wanted to squeeze her, like follow me on Instagram, I'll fix it.

Kacie:

No,, I know. I really think that there we are in this moment where women's ability to have empathy and demonstrate what that is to live with care and love for other people. Like I think we will save the world. I feel very confident about it.

Linda:

For sure. Like saying a hundred percent,

Kacie:

Who do you admire?

Linda:

Oh man, I'm going to give like a couple answers. My mom a lot because she acted like when I told her the news, what I, she acted like what I had for lunch. I was what I was telling her I had for lunch that day. It was beautiful. Obviously my husband for giving me the space to be happy about this process, because you know, when you go through a divorce, you're supposed to act sad and all this good stuff and not, we're not divorcing, but like to be happy, like he lets me be me. And obviously I haven't finished her book yet, but Glennon Doyle definitely is in there.

Kacie:

Oh, God. Yeah.

Linda:

In so many ways. so many ways.

Kacie:

Yeah. It's her ability to articulate these experiences and, you know, things that I feel like only happened deep in the corners of my life and no one else has ever experienced her to say them and speak life to it. It's, It's pretty powerful. Speaking of what are you reading right now? It's still I'm finishing Untamed.. It's like, I don't know where people find this time. Like, I don't have time to watch TV. I don't have time to read a book. I'm like, where do I find the extra hours? I go to sleep at like 8:00 PM. Yup. Yes. So for me, it's the, you know, 30 minutes. I can keep my eyes open at night before I go to sleep. Right.

Linda:

I'm not getting very far with that. I'm like

Kacie:

For you what's the best advice you've ever been given?

Linda:

Hmm, like sleep when the kids sleep, that kind of bullshit. I'm joking. No, I'm actually, no. Okay. I got it from my therapist. It was really monumental in my life. She said to me why do I feel responsible for something? And so every time I'm feeling overwhelmed or something. I asked myself that question, why do I feel responsible for it? And half the time, I don't have to feel fucking responsible for it. So it's like, okay, good to go.

Kacie:

Yeah. And then you like the patriarchy is why? Uh,

Linda:

Exactly

Kacie:

Alright, if you can tell your younger self one thing, this can be younger a long time ago, this can be six months ago, this could be six days ago. What would you tell her? It could be like five seconds ago? What would you do?

Linda:

Oh man, little me. Oh. I was made fun of for being the version of myself that I am today. And if I only knew that that was my power, how would I would tell my younger self just keep going.

Kacie:

I am so glad that you did, even if it was a temporary detour.

Linda:

It's okay. 20 years is a blip in life, right?

Kacie:

it really is. And you would never be able to reach the people who need what you have to say. Had you not had said detour, you would, you would not have the credibility.

Linda:

You need the detour because I had to go through some shit to talk about it. I always say that like you can't experience is everything. So I'm, I'm all for all the shit.

Kacie:

I know. I say now I didn't really understand life is a journey until I've had said journey. I'm like, oh no, I get it now the cliche does have value. This has been such a wonderful way to spend an hour together. Thank you for being on the show.

Linda:

My pleasure, truly, it's been so much fun. Like we can hang out all day, whatever.

Kacie:

Literally, you're going to give me a TikTok tutorial. You can come back and we can keep talking about modern womanhood, because I think we've only just scratched the surface of conversations to be had.

Linda:

Thank you so much. It's been such a pleasure. You're a wonderful host.

Kacie:

All right, y'all. That's another episode of the Fuck "It All" podcast for modern women redefining it all. I'm Kacie Lett Gordon, your host, if you like what you heard today, I'm going to ask that you go over. It all media.co sign up for a newsletter. We have some very exciting things coming into your inbox every week, whether it's episodes like the one we've done today with Linda to events, to courses, to just, I don't know, a little inspiration that we need for a pick me up. You need it. And we are so glad that you're here with us. We'll see you next time.