Jill Emich – RESILIENT A.F.: Stories of Resilience


Problem? Who am I, and what do I REALLY want
Solution – The answer lies within.

I am the middle sister of triplets, two eggs, one split, and I am the creation of one of those split eggs. My story is about finding my own unique voice & purpose FINALLY. A quest, I believe, that is vital for each and every one of us.

Being one of three has had incredible blessings. For instance, growing up, we always had someone to play with. We never had to go to our first day of kindergarten or our first day of college alone. We were so attuned to each other that it felt totally natural to be together. It was all we knew.

Being in the middle, I learned how to keep the peace. I was a hardcore people-pleaser, and it played out in all my relationships. The upside was that I had a lot of friends and was always game to bring the good vibes and the good times. It played out in dating where I would be everything I thought they wanted me to be, my people-pleaser avatar in full effect. The downside was that the relationships never lasted; how could they? I lived outside myself, not looking into who I was and what I wanted or needed. The truth is, I rarely thought about it.  

People often compared my sisters and me. “You look EXACTLY alike! Do you read each other’s minds? (yes, pretty much), do you have your own language? (definitely). How come her hair is curlier, she has a freckle, and she is a little bigger or smaller…. you get the picture. It was normalized to be compared. I GET WHY TWINS AND MULTIPLES SEPARATE! But we were connected and made the UNconscious agreement to stick it out together through thick and thin. We didn’t plan it, but that is how it went year by year.  

At 24, we opened our first restaurant and music venue, which would be a wild ride for the next 20 years of incredible highs and lows. We celebrated the great successes, and there were also the epic fights that left me feeling the lowest of the low. We were getting older and looking for more individuality, so we lashed out and pushed and pulled with our restaurants, a very demanding business, as the backdrop. Holy moly, I am glad we survived it.

And then the husbands arrived. Jessica got married, and then Jennifer, both in our early thirties.  I was still falling for the “wrong men,” I told myself. What was really happening was that my retrofitting and people-pleasing ways would never work. It wasn’t the men, it was me. I needed to look within to find my own inner compass, to get clear on what I wanted instead of worrying about what everyone else thought of me.  It was years of loneliness, a feeling I had never experienced before. I was hard on myself when I had the realization that  I had brought this all on myself. I had been meditating and doing yoga for 20 years, but I had never really looked under this hood of who I REALLY was on my own, without my sisters. When I did, it was pretty much a 5-year dark night of the soul. I would go out with friends and drink too much to fill a void or have dinner for one at home and then walk around the neighborhood and see all the young families doing life together. Both situations left me with a deep pit in my stomach like I was missing out. 

Then, it was enough. I decided to pick up my bootstraps. I incorporated more self-love and dug in to get clear on what I wanted my life to look like. I started to travel solo, first on road trips, then out of the country, which was such an edge. I had never traveled alone. In these edgy parts, I found myself. I practiced loving myself despite it all. 

At the age of 42, I began again. I became a dance instructor, choreographer, somatic therapy coach, and breathwork facilitator. I started to blend all of these modalities together to teach, lead, and learn in new ways. I love working with groups and continuing to build community, as I did throughout the restaurant years. What I now realize through working with others is that it isn’t just multiples that feel this way or middle children, but instead, so many of us who have been programmed to do or think in a certain way have taken on someone else’s belief systems and then at some point say, “but wait, what do I want?  Who am I? What is my true purpose?’’ I believe it is the quest of the human experience. 

After 25 years, we decided to end the restaurant era and move on to new horizons. My sis Jessica and I created Shine Living Community. We have made the very conscious agreement to do it in a way where both of us have our wings spread wide, and we get to be exactly who we are, unique from one another, and the power we create together.  Our other sister set off on her own path, and the switch-up has been incredible for our relationship.

Oh, and the guy….. He came in as soon as I found self-love and comfort in being alone instead of lonely. The moment I looked into his eyes, I knew I found home. I am forever grateful for my entire journey that is still unfolding because it got me where I am today, in my wholeness and still learning and growing. 

In moments of challenge, I  find things that bring me joy, like putting on a song I love and dancing around the living room, hiking in nature, and even sitting with a tree and speaking to it like an old friend, can be so healing. Or I meet up with a girlfriend, one where you can really let it all hang out and go for tea or a glass of wine. I do something to raise my joy meter instead of staying stuck in a funk. I keep coming back to the words, “Change my energy,  change my life.” It has been HUGELY helpful. Life is an INside job, after all. 

Some sage advice from my experience: Take time to turn the focus inward to you. This isn’t selfish; it is necessary. Knowing yourself is true empowerment, and it gives you an incredible inner compass in which to guide your life. Get curious about who you are at your core, your true essence. You are a work of art, a masterpiece that is ever-evolving, and you are unique to any other soul.  So meet this miracle of this life with an open heart. The world needs you in all of your authentic glory.  You got this.

Are you ready to share your story of RESILIENCE? You can do that HERE.