2 till I’m 30

“In the end, though, maybe we must all give up trying to pay back the people in this world who sustain our lives. In the end, maybe, it’s wiser to surrender before the miraculous scope of human generosity and just keep saying thank you, forever and sincerely, for as long as we have voices.” -Elizabeth Gilbert

I can’t believe all of the people who traveled from around the US to surprise me at Disneyland yesterday. I was shocked and overwhelmed by the outpouring of love. During my 29th year on this earth I felt alone and broken. My life and family were falling apart and I was empty. When I reached out for help, I felt like no one was there. But, yesterday, there was so much love. I was surrounded by so many friends and family who came to celebrate with us. People took vacation days, traveled hundreds and even thousands of miles, and planned Disneyland vacations to be with us. It’s still taking me time to process all of the support, love, and joy I received yesterday. It was a reminder that I have so many amazing friends who support me, even if I don’t get to see them on a regular basis. And, I now get to join a family who loves and accepts me for who I am. My cup truly runeth over and I no longer feel alone. 
I will be saying thank you, forever and sincerely, for as long as I have a voice.  

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3 till I’m 30

“When you meet that person. a person. One of your soulmates. Let the connection. Relationship. Be what it is. It may be five minutes. Five hours. Five days. Five months. Five years. A lifetime. Five lifetimes. Let it manifest itself the way it is meant to. It has an organic destiny. This way if it stays or if it leaves. You will be softer. From having been loved this authentically. Souls come into. Return. Open. And sweep through your life for a myriad of reasons. Let them be who. And what they are meant.” -nayyirah waheed

Time with friends is precious these days as they live all over the country. But, I cherish these moments we have together when they sweep through my life. They float in, bring me sunshine, celebrate my existence, and then float out to continue on their own unique journeys… and I love them for it. We are awesome, we are passionate, and we are leading productive and exciting lives. But, sometimes, we carve out the time for hugs, conversation, trips to the happiest place on earth, and share big moments in our lives…. like proposals to marry your bestest friend and soulmate. (Eek) I am so grateful to have these beautiful souls in my life. Thank you to my bestie Katelyn Holliday and her love Bruce Brown for being a part of Brighton and my special moment. I love you guys and I hope that we get to share lots of moments together until we’re all old, grey, wrinkly, and happily ever after. 

17 till I’m 30

I’m not one for sappy, lovey-dovey posts: but, I would not be honest about the 30 reasons I am grateful to be turning 30 if I didn’t include my man, Brighton. So, here goes with the cheesy sap-fest. You have been warned. ☺️

I love this guy and I have for 6 years now. He gives me my space and my independence but he is always there for me when I need him. He gave me time to learn to trust again and overcome emotional trauma from childhood abuse. He made me stop saying “I’m sorry” for things I don’t have control over. He helped me repair my fragile self-esteem. He loves the parts of my personality which I used to hide from the world. 

He lets me pursue my dreams but reminds me that downtime and fun are important. He helps me to grow as a human being without ever trying to change me. He is my rock, my best friend, my yoga buddy, and my favorite travel companion. Everything is more fun when Brighton is around. 

He and I have been through some ups and downs during our 6 years together. These have been some of the most life-altering, emotional-rollercoaster, and painful years of my life; and yet, Brighton was always there by my side, cheering me on, sticking with me through family drama, offering advice, bringing cookies, and sometimes just letting me be with my thoughts to work things out. He is always there with a smile, a hug, and a giggle whenever I need cheering up. 

 He’s not perfect. I’m not perfect. We’re not perfect. But we’re perfect for eachother. One of my favorite quotes from a Johnny Starlings song is “not entertwined, we’ve grown side by side.” I definitely think this represents Brighton and I. Both of us have changed drastically over these past 6 years; but, we have always grown together. We don’t complete eachother, but we help make eachother better. 

I love you Brighton. 

21 till I’m 30

As I near my 30’s, I am so grateful that my mother is still such a prominent part of my life. We are best friends, travel buddies, and shopping partners. She’s the first one I turn to when I need help, when I’ve had a bad day, or when I have exciting news. She’s the first one I check in with when I’m bored. She’s the first one I turn to when I need some perspective. 

This past summer we had the opportunity to travel together to Hawaii. It was just what we needed to reconnect after a difficult few years and I am so happy that we had this time together. I loved every moment, every hug, every cuddle and special memory we shared. 

A few of my friends have lost their moms, are now estranged, or just have bad relationships. It makes me realize how lucky I am to be so connected to this strong, brave woman. She is such an amazing role model and she teaches me everyday what it means to survive, thrive, overcome hardship, and keep a childlike innocence and excitement. 

I love every moment we spend together and I am so thankful that my mom will always be there for me, no matter what. 

People Are Inherently Good 

The events of the past few weeks have left me shaken and saddened. It seems like every time I catch a glimpse of the news or check social media my breath is taken away by a new tragedy. It has become so difficult to handle that all I want to do is curl up in my bed and hide from the world. 

But today I got out of bed, put on my running shoes, and went out into the world. As I ran around my little neighborhood I was struck by the fact that everyone I passed stopped what they were doing to give me a wave and a smile. People driving by, watering their lawns, tending their gardens, playing games on their front porches, riding their bikes, taking out their garbage… they all took a moment to acknowledge my existence. It’s a small gesture, and yet, with each new smile and wave my faith in humanity was slowly restored and pieces of my heart were put back together. I began to realize that people are inherently good, decent, and kind. Though the news and social media may lead us to believe otherwise, there is more good out there in the world than bad. The problem is that goodness whispers while evil screams. So maybe it is time for us to speak up a little louder, love a little more, and spread joy instead of fear. Sometimes all it takes is a smile and a wave to change someone’s day and create a ripple affect across the globe. So consider this post a challenge to pass on the love. Share some kindness and you can change the world. 

Love Thyself

 How often do we look upon our bodies with disgust? We glare at the lines left by a lifetime of smiles. We wince when seeing our large, muscular legs trying to fit into skinny jeans. We poke and prod our bellies wishing that the strong abs below the surface would show definition on the skin level. We shake our triceps counting the number of “jiggles” our arm flab creates. We are constantly berating our poor bodies and not seeing the strength beneath the surface. Our bodies, which heal themselves, keep us living, keep us breathing, do things that are seemingly impossible, and strive to do our bidding moment to moment, get nothing but harsh words and criticism from us. What if we offered love to the parts we hate most? What if we gave our slightly crooked nose a thank you for allowing us to smell such a beautifully scented flower? What if we appreciated the girth of our thighs for the fact that they keep us walking, running, jumping, and yogaing? What if we cultivated gratitude towards those fine lines for giving our faces expression over the years? What if we love our love handles for providing the breath support neccessary to sing our hearts out? What if we just dropped down on the side of the road and gave our knees a nuzzle? How would your body respond? How would your personality and self-confidence change? How would the world and the advertisement industry change if we suddenly began to love these bodies we’ve been gifted? So, give yourself a great, big hug, kiss your beautifully nubby knees, and love this body unconditionally. You only get one. 

 

  #detoxyobody challenge day 4: kiss your knee