I woke up on May 20th at 6:00am. I barely slept in anticipation of the event. It was the first day that I’d be publicly selling my book Unschooled and promoting my Live You With Lisa brand. For three years, I dedicated countless hours to writing my story. Three editors, a marketing specialist, a branding company and a handful of published newspaper and online articles later, the moment had arrived.

Nothing was planned: I didn’t pre-select my outfit, rehearse how I was going to pitch my book or memorize what I’d say to people. I wanted to be as natural and authentic as possible. The best way for me to achieve that was to be fully present, to live in the moment.

Right before I left my apartment, though, I paused. I started to cry. Not just a handful of tears, rather I was hysterically sobbing. I couldn’t control myself. And I let it happen. I allowed myself to feel what I was feeling. Not try control my emotions. Not be perfect. Just be me.

In retrospect, I cried because I was overwhelmed by my accomplishment: proud of myself for persisting, insistent on pushing through the uncomfortable. Not allowing the hundreds of manuscript rejections or all of literary agents who turned me down deter me. Not listening to the people who told me that my vision was impossible to achieve.

The Women’s Lifestyle Expo was a success. It wasn’t about the book sale. Rather, it was about connecting with like-minded women who, like me, are living their visions. Their passion and drive inspire me to continue on my journey.

I strive to live out my purpose that I wholeheartedly believe in—to create a safe platform for people to connect with one another authentically. What that looks like exactly is still uncertain. It may never be clearly defined. What I do know is that anything is possible.