“Thank you, God.” Tears rolled down my face as I bargained, “please let me live; I promise to inspire others by making my mess my message.” The mask came down over my face as they wheeled me to the operating room for emergency open-heart surgery.

Memories bubbled up and swirled in my head as the present slipped away and thoughts and feelings from my childhood, marriage, and life surfaced.

At an early age I decided to live my life with grace and model the behaviors I wished my elders had shown me instead of the dysfunction I experienced; for years I struggled with forgiveness. How could I forgive my step-mother for the physical and emotional abuse or my father for turning his back when she told me to leave and never come back?

I learned to forgive my parents, not for them, but for me, then I forgave my ex for the abuse during our marriage so I could move forward with my life. I wanted to live an Intentional Life filled with meaning, purpose, love, and kindness.

My forgiveness and gratitude practices opened my life to living from a place of grace I so desired. I went on to coach other women wanting to heal, recover, and move forward with their own lives. Taking our time, we walk the paths of mindfulness, reflection, and mindset to discover and design a life healed from past traumas. We heal from heartbreak, separation, and divorce; recover from behaviors that spiral us out of control; energize our empty nests and find pleasures for retirement. We allow ourselves to grieve, forgive, and experience gratitude so that we can move on and forward with our lives.

With reflection, we recognize our experiences and acknowledge those that have touched our lives and the lives we have touched. With each day we create a path to a personal legacy and know we have a responsibility to decide what that legacy will be. With the right incentive, we each have the power to create positive ripples in our lives.

Our fingerprint extends way beyond our reach, especially with the right intentions, words, and actions, and I want my life to be an example of possibility and opportunity, especially for my children and grandchildren. My decision to live with grace, self-worth, and confidence was purposeful so that I experience the joy of living a well designed life. And this lifestyle all began with a decision to value myself and others; take responsibility for my thoughts, feelings, and actions; and heal the little girl within.

For my legacy, I hope to inspire others; I live and teach intentional living through awareness, mindset, and self-care with my courses, books, and coaching membership, and it’s my desire for my actions to inspire hope, possibility, and opportunity for others.

What do you want your legacy to be?


  • Lisa McGrath

    NBCT, Author, and Life Coach

    A House With Four Rooms

    Lisa is a National Board Certified Teacher and Life Coach with a unique style, perspective, and musings that encourages and empowers you to examine and create the life of your dreams. Her posts ask you to join her on A Pilgrimage to Self by finding the intentional acts that help you focus on achieving your goals and finding the extraordinary in the ordinary. Her work includes inspirational, practical, and spiritual direction for everyday life as she encourages you to “air” out your own House With Four Rooms (physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual). She is currently working on a memoir based on the lessons learned during her walks on the ancient pilgrims' route across Spain: the Camino de Santiago. Lisa is a teacher, life coach, artist, and entrepreneur. Aside from teaching, her favorite things include traveling, textile arts, crafting, reading, eating, camping, going to the theatre, and spending time with her family.