As I began my research on Restoration Weekend I was pleasantly surprised when I found more than a weekend of women hanging out together but a weekend that was birthed in order to teach women how to restore and revive their heart and soul. Women are encouraged to help all that are in attendance through their own life stories; learning that there is a lesson in every story. The joy at the center of this creation is the beautiful spirit of Michelle Hargrove, the woman behind the Restoration. A woman who has opened her heart in order to be the catalyst to assist others in finding the happiness and peace we as women so often push to the side. Ms. Hargrove opens up in the interview to invite women to take time, even if they are unable to attend Restoration Weekend, to learn no matter what that we must give our minds, bodies and souls time to breathe in order to stay at the top of our game in order to walk in the spirit of joy.
Who is Michelle Hargrove?
There are so many dimensions to Michelle. I am a mother, wife, confident, caring, and loving. More than anything, I am heart-driven. At the end of the day, I want to leave a great legacy that will not only make my children proud, but ensure that they will be able to say she was here and really did what she spoke and preached about. I love connecting people with each other. I love to travel and shop, but more than anything I am the picture of so many women. We are trying to attain those goals and face fears that we don’t want to give into. I have dreams and aspirations that I want to live to see my children fulfill. I am every woman.
What ignites your Heart & Soul?
My heart and soul are ignited when I see the things that I do. Since I have the power to truly change and transform someone’s life ignites me more than anything. When I launched Restoring Hope, which is a part of Restoration weekend, I see that we are able to empower women through our own life’s stories. We can be that example to someone and help them realize that guess what; you don’t have to be married, a movie star, or come from a long lineage of wealth if you have enough drive and power within you to make any dream happen. Being able to speak that into someone else from my life’s experiences is very powerful in itself.
I became a housewife at 23-years old and a mother at 25 to a one pound seven ounce baby who was very ill. Restoration was birth after my struggle with my son’s health after 17 surgeries and it was still in me to use my testimony to help empower other women. We all have it in us, we just have to believe and go for it
What three points do you think every woman should know?
• It is so important to spend time getting to know who you are. Often we have the sound of life turned up so loud that we can’t even get tuned-in with what our purpose in life really is. So I am a stronger believer that women should spend quality time with themselves. We all need Restoration in our lives. We need to learn how to rest; to seek out what our true purpose is with our lives; to revive our spirits. As women we are givers and we must take time out to replenish ourselves.
• Write it down. Write out your vision, your blueprint for your life. Speak it every single day. You will see it manifest if you write it down.
• Take a look around your circle and come up with your own board of directors for your life. You need to surround yourself with people who believe in your vision and purpose and who will encourage and support you in that life.
How and where do you find peace?
I find peace in spending time alone. As much as I love my friends and family I do enjoy quiet time with my boys. I am the mother of two amazing young men who are very much a part of my brand. They have traveled to South Africa to be a part of Restoring Hope where we help uplift communities in need. Just having them watch their mother build a legacy for them brings me a sense of peace in accomplishing being a great mother. The boys understand through building Restoration Weekend that I am building a life of service that is very important to me.
“I like my kids and they bring me a lot of peace.”
What is Restoration Weekend?
It is an amazing time. It was birthed from a place when I was a young wife, a mom with a sick baby, when I realized that I needed to help other women like me. Women who had a baby that was medically compromised, or terminally ill, who needed some hope and some restoration from their issues. When I started it other women came to me and said their story had nothing to do with a sick child but they needed Restoration Weekend for other reasons. We all have something we are looking to restore. When you break down, the true meaning of restoration is bigger than needing to restore because your child is sick, it meant much more. We all need restoration in our lives whether it’s from a marriage, work, or just our health and well-being. It was birthed knowing that I, Michelle, truly needed restoration in my life.
Once I realized that we need to let people know that we are not the only ones going through something, I knew there was power in sharing our stories.
What you gain first and foremost from attending Restoration Weekend is rest. You need time to unplug from the day-to-day things that are pulling at you. To Spoil you. To Pamper you. This is time for you to reconnect with women. These women are powerful in their own right and they need to connect to other like-minded women. This is also time to revive your sense of yourself. This is your time to try something new. Awaken your soul!
You will learn to restore the beauty of you. We are all busy with the hustle and bustle of life and aren’t stopping to smell all of the roses along the path.
At Restoration Weekend you are going to get reminded just how beautiful you really are and get a little “Glam” back in your life. I just believe that it’s awesome being a girl and sometimes we need to get back to that girl inside of the grown woman. We top it off at a beautiful destination where you will enjoy beautiful cuisine, great service, luxury accommodations, where you will start off each day with morning meditation. A Restoration experience.
What’s on the horizon for Michelle?
The Restoration brand is growing and branching out to change women’s lives all over the world.
We have added Restoring the Glam to remind ourselves of the beauty not only on the inside, but on the outside as well. We will have Mikki Taylor there to make sure we are reminded of our own beauty. Our theme for this year is just breathe; so we are taking a time-out to take time out to just breathe.
We also have the Taste of Restoration in Dallas and then Restoring Hope in South Africa with Nelson Mandela’s granddaughter. So much more to come.
Erica Annise is the National Marketing Director for Heart & Soul Magazine as well as a staff writer. You can connect with her on twitter @EricaAnnise and on facebook, Erica Annise.