5 Life Lessons I’ve Learned Since Moving to LA

5 Life Lessons I’ve Learned Since Moving to LA // The Girl From Panama

I have been living in Los Angeles for a year now and I can’t help but think about all of the amazing things I have learned since I moved here. I wanted to share some of these lessons with you to finally open up about a few things, and hopefully, help someone that is going through a similar situation.

Moving to LA was not easy for me because I was in the midst of a very stressful personal situation, but making the decision has turned out to be one of the best of my life!

Here are the most valuable lessons I’ve learned during my first year in LA.

5 Life Lessons I’ve Learned Since Moving to LA // The Girl From Panama

DIVORCE IS NOT A FAILURE

If you have been following me for a while, then I’m pretty sure you noticed some drastic changes in my personal life. My marriage ended a little bit over a year ago, and as confusing as it sounds, it was probably the best and worst thing that has ever happened to me.

One of the hardest things I dealt with during this process of healing was hearing this constant voice in my head saying “I failed at life, and I failed at my marriage.” Nobody gets married expecting a divorce; I certainly never thought I was going to get a divorce even though I realized a few years down the line that we were definitely not meant to be together.

Throughout this year, I have learned that my divorce is not a failure in my life – it was a necessary stepping stone that I needed to go through to find myself and reinvent my life!  Most importantly, I learned that my divorce does not define me nor will I allow it to haunt me in my next relationship.

Have you ever heard the saying “out of bad comes good”? Now I believe it! I’m someone completely different today than I was 5 years ago. I love life, and most importantly, I love myself. My “failed” marriage made me who I am today, and because of that, I’m able to see life in a different perspective. Don’t get me wrong, I go through my ups and downs like everyone else, but I feel like now my life has a purpose and that is the best feeling in the world!

5 Life Lessons I’ve Learned Since Moving to LA // The Girl From Panama

FORGIVENESS IS THE KEY TO HEALING

Oh boy, this is probably the most powerful lesson I learned this year. Forgiving someone who has hurt you is not easy, but it is not impossible, I can tell you that.

The day that my ex-husband decided to end our marriage was by far the worst day of my life, and it wasn’t because I was against it, like I said – I knew we needed to end our marriage – but the way he did it…that was probably the most painful thing I have ever experienced. But now, I actually see that day as the biggest blessing I have ever received.

A lot of my friends and family asked me, how did you get over your divorce? And I always say, I forgave him and I forgave myself because I also did a lot of things to hurt him. Let me now tell you something… I spent 4 months crying every.single.day. It was a vicious cycle of me reading texts, looking at photos, re-living memories in my head, being upset 24/7, listening to sad songs, you name it… of course, I was not going to get over it like that, but one day with the help of God I said to myself: enough is enough!

I took action and over time, as I studied the word of God with a friend of mine, God started to reveal to me how damaging and unhealthy it was to live life with so much anger about another person. Most importantly, he revealed to me the benefits of letting go and forgiving.

When you forgive someone who has hurt you, you are actually doing yourself a huge favor! I learned this from one of my favorite pastors, Joyce Meyer. She said in one of her podcasts “as you release the bitterness and anger in your heart, you are able to live with real peace and joy” and I’m the living example of that. As soon as I applied that to my life, I began to see changes. All of the sudden…I started to get more opportunities, sad thoughts started to disappear, I was happier and happier every day. I saw how my world changed right in front of my eyes!

At the end of the day, forgiveness is a choice, and you have the choice to forgive and move on, have a great life and wish everyone well… trust me, it is the key to happiness!

5 Life Lessons I’ve Learned Since Moving to LA // The Girl From Panama

GOD IS GOOD

Finding God was the biggest gift I have ever received from my sister. Because of her, I became really really close to God and I have never looked back ever since. God is not only good, in fact, he is pretty amazing and he can do the impossible!

The hardest moment of life was definitely my divorce. The separation happened really quickly. I woke up one day and my life was a complete mess. I was depressed, unhealthy, I was a sad soul, but as soon as I started to trust in God, I saw the light at the end of the tunnel.

Now, I love my life, which is far from perfect, but I’m okay with that. I have learned to love my current situation and the season I am in. I’m also grateful for every single situation I have been through, including my divorce and when life gets difficult or doesn’t make sense, I can trust Him to work things out His way and in His perfect timing.

5 Life Lessons I’ve Learned Since Moving to LA // The Girl From Panama

I AM WHERE I NEED TO BE

Moving to a new city with no friends and no family was extremely scary and not the easiest choice for me given I was in the beginning stages of my divorce, but for some reason, while everyone was telling me “you should move back to Panama to be with your loved ones during this difficult time,” there was something inside of me that was telling me “go to LA, don’t quit your plan!”

I’m so glad I took the risk because I knew my life needed a fresh new start. See, the original plan was to move here with my ex and start a new life here in LA, but I quickly learned that moving here meant the end of an old life and the beginning of an extraordinary life full of blessings. I look back and I can’t believe how far I have come since that happened. I’m telling you…Everything happens for a reason!

I also used to be this person that always thought the grass was greener on the other side. I would constantly think of ways of making my life “better” – whatever that meant. Today, I have learned to enjoy my life the way it is – with the ups and downs – because now I understand that in adversity lies a hidden opportunity to learn something important about life and grow as a person.

5 Life Lessons I’ve Learned Since Moving to LA // The Girl From Panama

LOVE WHAT YOU DO

Last year, I didn’t feel great about my blog as much as I should of. One of the reasons why was probably because my ex-husband wasn’t a fan of it and also because I hated pretending I had this “perfect marriage.” I felt like I was lying all the time, pretending I was happy when in reality I was so broken inside.

Now, that I found myself and reinvented my life, I realized that I truly love what I do. I love creating content for you here on The Girl From Panama. I’m passionate about this career I have chosen. Ever since I was little, I dreamt of working in fashion and doing what I do today. It is beautiful to see how when you remove some bad things in your life, you start to see the good in other areas. Not going to lie, some days are difficult and it’s very stressful to run your own company, but you have to look at the big picture.

My advice? Find a job you truly love and you will enjoy your life more and more every day. Don’t settle and don’t let anyone tell that you should quit. I was so close to shutting down my blog one day and I’m so glad I didn’t! The Girl From Panama is here to stay!

Sorry for the super long post! I hope this is the beginning of a closer relationship with all of you. Thank you for reading my blog and allowing me to have this career. Love you all! – Pam

Photos by Felicia Lasala.

5 Life Lessons I’ve Learned Since Moving to LA
http://thegirlfrompanama.com/5-life-lessons-ive-learned-since-moving-to-la/
  • This is a new chapter in a life that’s been through happiness and sorrows … treat this as an experience and learn to love and trust again. The most beautiful thing in life is when we leave, we bring along all of our luggages, but we left behind all the good memories and good times to start a whole new chapter in the exciting book 📚 you are about to embark on. :)
    Keep your thoughts high and that smile shine bright! :)
    A very beautiful post!

    🌸🍃LA BIJOUX BELLA 🌸🍃| By Mia | A Creative Lifestyle Blog

    • Thank you so much for your comment and advice! I really appreciate it :) you are so right always keep my thoughts high and smile!
      xo
      Pam

  • Thanks for sharing this post, it’s really important to allow yourself to heal and I’m sure your advice will help a lot of other people in a similar situation.

    • I really hope so :) Thank you for the support! xo Pam

  • Briana Trevino

    God truly is always the answer. So glad you found that.

    Briana
    https://beyoutifulbrunette.com/

  • Mackenzie

    Pam,

    You are so inspiring! I’ve been following you since I moved to Boston a few years ago and have always enjoyed your posts and Instagrams. I applaud you for writing about something so difficult and close to you. I’m sure it wasn’t easy to write about this. Just goes to show that there’s a silver lining in even the darkest of situations. You’re amazing! xo

    Mackenzie
    http://www.brunchonsunday.com

    • Hi Mackenzie! Thank you so much for your comment. I really appreciate the support! It wasn’t easy to write, but I’m glad I did :) xx

  • Wonderful post, thanks for sharing! Love your blog and I agree with everything you have said in this post!

    http://www.gloryofthesnow.com

  • Omg these photos are soo gorgeous!!

    Enclothed Cognition

  • Mari-Vicky

    Hugs from Panama! Te he seguido desde el inicio! You’ve built an amazing career, and hope the best comes your way!

  • Mónica Cecilia Mendoza

    Gracias por compartir!

  • Adelina

    Oh darling!! I had no idea!! To me you’ve always had this radiance and glow, and the kindest most welcoming smile! I applaud you on writing this and sharing your heart with the world! You are an incredibly strong woman and with God anything is possible! Plus, your blog is incredible! You’re amazing babe!! Happy to have you in LA. Xoxo

    http://www.thecharmingolive.com
    Adelina

    • So sweet of you to say that Adelina! Thank you so much for your kind note. I agree with you with God anything is possible! Thanks for your comment! xx

  • Geovany Cousins-Jones

    Las cosas pasan por algo. Después de la tempestad, viene la calma. Keep up the good work and thank you for sharing. XOXO! Una de tus fans and followers. Soy de PTY y también vivo en California.

    • Tienes toda la razón! Thank you so much. Qué lindo saber que hay tantas panameñas en California! Un abrazo grande! xx

  • Daniela Webster

    Wow, I am from Panama and just moved to Los Angeles. I have to say I loved this blog post, and I want to encourage you to keep writing. I think you have an excellent message to share with everyone and an amazing talent. Keep it up!

    • Thank you Daniela for your sweet comment. It means so much to me! I’m definitely going to continue writing about real life moments. Thanks for the support! xo

  • Wonderful post and thanks for sharing. It sounds like you have been through a really tough time. You are a real inspiration and look forward to read your new content. Xx

    • Thank you for the support Jacquard! I really appreciate it. Can’t wait to share more topics here on my blog. xx

  • Tony.

    I loved reading your 5 life lessons Pam, you are truly a lovely lady and I wish you every happiness for the future.

  • Jessica Hernandez

    Thank you so much for opening up and sharing such a private topic. Your story and words will for sure help other women out there going through the same struggles and to others like me, well you just inspired me A LOT! I love your pictures by the way, such great content! Do you work with a professional photographer? Good job and keep working hard! Lots of love from Spain!

    • Thanks, Jessica! I really appreciate your response. That’s my wish to help other women going through a difficult situation. Thanks for the support! Also, I do work with a professional photographer all the time :)

  • Carina Toledo

    Pam, this is such an amazing and inspirational post, thank you for sharing this with us! I have such admiration for you and am so happy to see you in this amazing new moment in life!

    • Love you Carina! Thanks for pushing me to share my story! xo

  • Melissa Imbrogno

    You are so inspiring Pam! I’ve been following your blog for a long time and I always found you to be so beautiful and graceful. What you did was not easy I’m sure, but life (and God) has a way of surprising us sometimes! You’re doing an amazing job and are an inspiration!

    Xoxo
    Melissa

    simplymeli.com

    • Hi Melissa, thank you so much for your constant support! I really appreciate it! I agree God, has an amazing way of surprising us sometimes. Sending you a hug! xo

  • Chloé Adelia Watts

    Thank you for this post Pam and having the courage to share your story. You are a true inspiration even when you don’t realise it. xxx

  • Carlen Sabagquit

    Pam, I have always admired your sensibility and level of maturity. You are well beyond your years! I’m so happy to see how much personal success you’ve had since venturing out with your blog after you left Bare Escentuals. You’re right! Things happen for a reason and the universe always works for what’s right & best for you. You are amazing, intelligent, beautiful inside and out, and so kind of heart! I am forever a fan!

    • OMG Carlen! Thanks for your sweet message. I hope you’re doing well! And yes, everything happens for a reason. Sometimes God has a better plan for us and we just have to accept it and move on and understand that at the end it will always be better for us. Thanks for your constant support! xo

  • Michelle Johnson

    Thank you for sharing! I only found you within the last couple of months so I had no idea. I’m so glad you did not shut this blog down. I love reading it and seeing your beautiful photos! You are absolutely gorgeous and seem like such a kind, generous, wonderful person! I went through a terrible relationship and I was devastated but it led me to so many greater things. I feel that is what is happening to you-while it was painful-it’s leading you to a better future! xoxo

    • I’m so happy you found my blog. Thanks for following along! I really appreciate it. Also, I’m happy to hear you were able to overcome your situation and that that has led you to a better future! Everything happens for a reason. Thanks for the support! Love, Pam

  • Absolutely loved this post, Pam! I admire your transparency and being so open with you readers. You are truly inspiring and I couldn’t agree more with your life lessons. God is so good! Xx

    Roberta

    http://www.thehemliner.com

    • Thank you so much Roberta! Exactly, God is so good! Thanks for taking the time to send me this note. xo

  • This gave me goosebumps, Pam! I am going through some things right now myself and this really is giving me hope that I will get through it! I always find you as such an inspiration and I love that you shared this. You are so incredible and I can’t wait to see everything you are going to do!

    xo, Hailey
    http://www.themiddlecloset.com

    • Hi Hailey! Thanks for your sweet note. You are a strong girl and I’m confident you will be able to overcome any obstacle. Hope my message helps you! Love, Pam

  • Ana Estrella Jaén

    Gracias por compartir tu experiencia! Me encanta tu blog y tu estilo!
    http://www.thebodyshake.ch/

  • laurie

    Very courageous and sweet of you to share. You’re a lovely girl inside and out.

    • Thanks for taking the time to comment, Laurie! I really appreciate it!

  • Jenna Lash

    So excited that you have found a deep relationship with Jesus Christ. I’m glad you are finding healing and new life after your painful divorce. Much love from a fellow LA girl!