Thoughts

May 15th, 2017 | Mother’s Day Reflections

One of the reasons I am a momma and get to celebrate and in a sense, be celebrated on Mother’s Day is because of Aurora. I am thankful to my first-born, first of her name, blood of my blood, breaker of chains, mother of…sorry (but not really).

Where do I begin really? I don’t think that it is any surprise how much I love my daughter and how appreciative I am that she is mine. She has brought so much joy and happiness to my life. I am thankful for Aurora, simply for herself and for choosing me as her mom. We were meant to be and it is as clear as day that our souls and hearts are VERY connected. We feel each other’s emotions and feed off of them. She changed my life even before she was in my arms. She changed my life the day that little screen showed two lines. It changed the day that I was told I was carrying a little girl. Without even knowing it she mended a piece of my heart that had been broken for so long. I feel complete when she is near. Aurora makes me laugh, cry, frustrated, laugh, smile, scared, did I mention she makes me laugh? I enjoy our adventures at Crossfit and going to Dutch Brothers and discussing her…admiration…of her boyfriend’s when we get back in the car. I love our time spent in our garden, even when I end up doing all the work because little girl wants to ride her scooter. Her enthusiasm to learn is contagious, whether its cooking, practicing spelling, or attempting to tie her shoes. I adore the fact that she is all about school and will take it upon herself to grab her workbooks and do her “homework”. She will go sit at her table and work at her numbers and alphabets and it makes my heart so happy. I hope she never loses that love, because I certainly did not love homework in any way when I was younger. All the mundane every day nonsense is so much more magical because she makes it that way. Driving in the car would be and is so much more boring without her singing and asking a million questions. I wish I slow down time so she didn’t have to grow up so fast. Now, Aurora is not perfect and I will always be the first to admit that. She definitely has her moments, but even in those moments I love her just the same. I know she’s not always going to listen to me, but as long as the lesson is learned and there’s no blood spilt or trips to the ER, again, we’re all good. I love that girl to infinity and beyond, she’s the Rory to my Loralei, the Moana to my Tefiti and the Tinkerbell to my Peter Pan. Off to Neverland we shall go sweet girl.

Being Aurora’s mom is a gift and she is a gift that I wouldn’t have if it wasn’t for my first love, her father. I wouldn’t be a mother without him. Now, I don’t ever write about Aurora’s dad and this will probably be the only time that I do. It is simply too hard for me and too emotional, and who likes feelings? Just kidding, of course everyone likes having feelings. There have never been the right words or enough words to describe the love I have for that man. Even through our hard times that pushed me to take a step back from us, I loved him with all my heart. He has been there for me and supported me in ways no one else did. No one loved me like he did and no one fought past my wall more than him. That’s my heart and soul right there (too bad it took me three years to have the strength to say that). Yesterday would have been our six-year wedding anniversary. (Oh, the rush of emotions that just came over). If it wasn’t for our love for one another Aurora would not be here. The world we live in would be a little less bright, I can’t even begin to imagine a world where she does exist. She was made from a love and friendship that we shared for one another. Kenny was my rock, my shoulder to cry on, my best friend and husband. I called him practically every day that we were apart, even when it had nothing to do with Aurora. For the past three year’s I would go see him at work and kept him in my life, because I also couldn’t imagine a world where he wasn’t in my life everyday. We would go do family outings and go to Disneyland, the one place I haven’t been able to go to just yet. That was our first trip together and a special place for us that we then shared with Aurora. When I think of Disneyland, I think of him. My heart was ready for us, but there was always that wall in the back of my mind. That stupid fucking wall (hate that wall). The trust wall, I was so afraid of getting hurt again but, there came the turning point where I didn’t care and I knew I’d take the bad days and fight through it, because he was always going to be worth walking on fire and through the storm for and he always will be. Where we are in life doesn’t change those feelings for me. I will always love him, there’s a place in my heart that is his, always. To say any different would be complete lie, and I’ve learned I have embrace that and not shy away frm that truth. He got me out of my dark places and gifted me with his love and with Aurora. There will no bigger mistake or greater lesson learned than to never wait or hold back. We shared so many beautiful years together and made one beautiful little girl. I will forever be grateful to him and admire his strength and love for our daughter. He gave me the greatest gift anyone could give me.

…to infinity and beyond, always.

Also, I wouldn’t even be on this earth if it wasn’t for my own mother, always fighting and being strong. To that I should thank her as well. My mom’s unconditional love is appreciated much more than I tell her. Which, I should probably work on that. She went through so much to have my siblings and I. Her emotional strength is unmatched and her love for is so strong. She is goals in so many ways and I hope to as good as mom to Aurora as she has been to us.

 

xoxo

 

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Adventures 2016, Get Healthy, Health and Fitness, Thoughts

My road to The Open

Going through the motions of trying to decide what to write or which of my many mock posts to choose from can be difficult at times. The Crossfit Open is now a day away, so sharing my thoughts and feelings on how Crossfit has affected me is a pretty obvious choice. But again, my insecurities surrounding my writing and choosing to be so open with people on the inner workings of my mind is kind of tough at times. No joke, I wrote this on Monday night…it is now Wednesday. But, the other night it kind of became clear to me what I wanted to, but not necessarily needed to, write about which is insecurities, more or less. Maybe.

A friend of mine, who I obviously respect or else I wouldn’t be writing about this, posted a status on facebook. Not political, nor was it one of his funny posts, but one that made me think, a lot. Like, a lot a lot. He simply just brought up the point that he doesn’t understand why people hold themselves back and don’t fully commit themselves to their dreams and goals. For most people, they will think nothing of this post and agree. One of his friends brought up a point that hit so close to home for me on a few levels, what about the people who are insecure with themselves? I tossed in my two cents in a very simple way with the least amount of words possible. I brought up that some people have higher hurdles to jump over, whether its emotional or mental. I also said that one bad experience can be a huge mind fuck for people and can be detrimental to future commitments or goals. Then a few more exchanges occurred and I said the light at the end of tunnel is sometimes so far and can seem unattainable and the light seems less bright the further you have to go down this path. His response, which for some people is very valid, was to just then push harder. Oh, my sweet friend, if only it was that easy. My heart sank a little and I didn’t respond, I just wanted to leave it a that. And as you can see, hours (days) later the response still hurts. How do you explain to someone through a computer screen that just about everyone with deep insecurities wishes it was just that easy. To be able to simply push through can seem so effortless to others. And I am speaking from a place of very real experience of having to fight my demons on a daily basis. I am now twenty eight and still have demons to battle with. I accepted a very long time ago that I always will have these struggles. I have been fortunate enough to have certain aspects, like Aurora, be my driving force to get through life. But, not everyone is blessed with things like that. So, how can I make people understand that?

I can’t.

I am not able to, in any capacity, sit here and make someone understand the struggle so many people face. It’s beautiful to know that there are so many people who are able to fight and make their way to their dreams and make them a reality, absolutely beautiful. But, we are all built so differently and need a better understanding of that. Even me describing my daily battle with myself won’t make people understand. It’s hard to understand something when maybe some people haven’t had to deal with it first hand. Not that anyone or everyone is not open minded, but when it comes to depression, social anxiety or insecurities these topics are hard for people to grasp. They can’t understand why people feel this way and just think they are throwing a pity party for themselves, which is the opposite a majority of the time. My depression and insecurities have been about me and only me. I try and do my best to cover those things up because I don’t want people to judge me for it. Sometimes that is easier said than done.

It is no secret how much Crossfit means to me. I have come to a point where I am willing to give up my social life and sanity and dedicate myself to Crossfit and be everything I can be. To eventually be the best and strongest version of myself. Now see how easy that was for me to sit here and type? It’s a nice thought. But holy shit, I am so good at talking myself out of those things and tend to a lot. It’s scary to think that way sometimes, to set a goal like that. Not because of the end goal itself but everything that will go into it and the endless questioning of my ability. Will I be good enough? Am I good enough? Am I wasting my time? Am I wasting my coaches time? Does anyone here actually like me? Did I make the wrong decision? And so on and so forth. I won’t say my weight stops me anymore that is not an insecurity for me at this point. When I began my fitness journey those insecurities slowly went away on their own. My weight doesn’t matter to me as much like it did in the past and it is no longer my main focus. I lost forty pounds and that’s all I needed to begin the process of being comfortable with myself. I don’t weigh myself anymore or necessarily care about those three digits because within four months I have gone from 162 pounds to 175 pounds (I weighed myself so I knew the actual number). Certain clothes are too big on me and things I purchased a size smaller months ago fit just right or are starting to get a little baggy. So what does that tell you right there?

That I am a mythical creature, duh.

No, but really, it just tells you I am still losing inches and possibly fat, but gaining a lot of muscle. My goals fitness wise have changed drastically due to Crossfit. Yes, I still want to lose weight, but I’m not exercising anymore, I am training. That mindset right there has changed so much for me. My goal is to lift more weight, to squat, snatch, and power clean with ease. I want to do a freaking pull-up and hand stands like it is second nature. I want to throw a weighted ball up a wall, catch it in a squat and throw it up again, repeatedly. I want to get to a point where I can do 20 burpees without stopping for a break. I want to be ridiculously strong, mentally, emotionally and physically. Okay, that tangent is over. But, you get the point. My insecurities with weight are gone, but that doesn’t mean I don’t face any others. I just began Crossfit and I have to do everything I can to NOT COMPARE myself to the other athletes I am training with. You know how tough that is? I can barely thrust or even just hold two 35 pound dumbbells over my head, but other girls can do it with ease. I have to constantly remind myself to not look at what they are doing and focus on my own shit. I get so into my own head and that’s when the light at the end of the tunnel starts to dim and seems unattainable. That sprint towards my goal is practically gone, I trip over my own thoughts and struggle to get back up and running. I cried last week during a workout, which was terrible. I think I hid it well, but I don’t know. I’ve had a lot going on in my life and was struggling to do front rack lunges with 75 lbs. I was whipping my arms so incredibly bad with the jump-rope because I could not hit my double unders. I felt like, in that moment, that I wasn’t good enough, like maybe I am making the wrong decision. Maybe I shouldn’t be doing Crossfit, maybe I’m not an athlete. That thought occurs on a daily basis. More-so now with The Open upon us and it sucks. Do I need to get over everything and “push” through it, duh…I don’t really have a choice. I signed up as soon as the registration opened up on purpose. Once I registered and paid, I couldn’t back out. I mean I could, but then I would be out of twenty bucks. So, pushing through is something I have to do, but to be able to be at that point mentally is huge. A few years ago, I would’ve just said fuck it and not done it and let that time and money go to waste. This is something that has been four years in the making. This all didn’t happen over night, it doesn’t quite work that way. It would be awesome if it did. So push through it I shall. I had a great WOD yesterday and was probably one of the only people excited to do it. This year Dave Castro gave the hint that there will be dumbbells used in The Open. We have been using them to better prepare ourselves, which is why I seemed annoyed earlier when I mentioned not being able to use the 35 pound weights. For time we need to do the following

Sit-Ups

50-40-30-20-10

Dumbbell Thrusters

5-10-15-20-25

I got that done in 13:21, I was ecstatic. Yes, I used 20 pound dumbbells, but I got through it bruises and all. (My shoulders are so tender right now, it’s ridiculous). So insecurities aside, I am really excited for Thursday’s announcement. But this is just another step up my emotional ladder and I only hope that everyone else dealing with insecurities can find the same courage to break through those barriers, at their own pace. Do things on your own time, and not what other people think. Make yourself happy, forget everyone else.

 

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Thoughts

2016, bye.

Twenty-Sixteen is dunzo, door is closed, chapter is over, fat lady has sung. It was an interesting year to say the least. I went back to school and bounced around between two majors that have nothing to do with another, (yay me). I found my love and passion for the gym again after losing it there for a quick second. Crossfit is my new bae (as the kids say) and a huge chapter of my life for the last nine years has ended, even if I didn’t want it too. Shit happens, yeah? But all is good. I don’t necessarily have resolutions for 2017, none of that new year, new me ish. Instead I like to look at the previous year and see what I can do to grow or improve upon. There were so many aspects about 2016 that I loved but they will stay there. If anything I want this year to just be magical. There are so many things I want for myself and my life that I need to stop letting it all pass by and just go for it. This year, without a doubt, will be another year of growth, but in many different ways.

I am beginning my second semester of college in a few weeks and have a bit more of a clearer vision of my path, kind of. I am going to attempt killing two birds with one huge stone, crazy I know. But I can’t stand being in limbo, so YOLO, heres to chasing two dreams at the same time. Walt Disney ran a huge Animation Studio while building Disneyland, I think I can handle chasing two dreams as well. I am actually pretty excited to see how this all will work out and if I can achieve this. I’m not getting any younger over here so it’s time to hustle.
I intend to also grow within Crossfit and challenging myself more. I have made some baby steps, more so the drunken, very wobbly, like just learning how to walk baby steps, but steps none the less. By the way whipping yourself on the arm from attempting double unders is no effing joke. My first few times I ended up whipping myself in the ass, so I never saw the marks, nor did it hurt that bad. But holy cow, I had about 6 marks from the rope a couple of weeks ago and that shit hurt. I have also started using the bands to help me with pull-ups. I really need to stop being a baby about box jumps though, I am just being ridiculous. I know I can do them, its just always scary the first few times. I always think back to high school and basketball freshman year and we had to do jumps onto the bleachers. I thought I was going to shit myself I was so scared, and then I did it and all was fine. Mentally, I just picture myself missing the box and then rolling over the front, because I would be the one to do that. I would totally laugh though, I mean what else am I going to do cry and be THAT girl? No thanks, I’d rather play off my embarrasment by laughing at myself…..and then go home and be that girl to cry and write about it in my journal. So, yeah, get better at Crossfit. The Open is coming up and I am so nervous. Not like I am trying to get into the games, more so for the fact that I will be see where I stack up in comparison to everyone else in the world. Crazy, but really awesome at the same time.
In 2017 I also want it to improve my relationship with food. Not that I have a bad relationship with food at all, I don’t eat my emotions anymore and I have pretty damn good self control.  It’s more so that I need to listen to my body better about what it doesn’t like which is gluten and dairy…huge eye roll, I know. I do not have Celiac’s and I don’t claim to be lactose intolerant but over the last three years I have cut both dairy and gluten as much as I can. So, when I do consume it I get sick to my stomach, which is the worst. All my favorite foods contain gluten and dairy. The quick fix for the dairy is that I could take pills, but that sucks to be honest. I don’t want to pop a pill EVERY single time I eat dairy. Let’s be honest, I would forget. I can barely remember to take my iron pills and biotin every morning (but those smell and taste horrid, I open the bottle and want throw up).  Taking pills in general sucks. Anyways…I suck at this and pretty much all of the time I Hail Mary it and just consume both because I am human and weak. There are awesome alternatives and I utilize them, but restaurants are my downfall. I don’t like being that person, especially when they ask if it is due to an allergy. I need to not be a baby.

Quick recap: School, Crossfit, Food. All easy tasks to improve on, lets be honest. I just need to stay focused. Along with those three items I will be working more on writing and starting a really cool project with my sister and one of our close friends. I am incredibly excited for this project as it is something I have been wanting to do for the last year and try out. Luckily they both were on board with the idea and are just as excited I am. Hopefully in spring we will be rolling out with that project. We’ve been tossing around ideas and starting to put pieces together and I just am so so excited to eventually share that with everyone.

So let the adventure begin.

xoxo

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Get Healthy, Thoughts

New love.

Two months have gone by and a lot has changed, both good and bad. But, I’m just going to focus on the good today.
I love Crossfit. I am madly, deeply in love and slightly obsessed with Crossfit. I really wish it didn’t take me so long to just go and do it. I really had no reason to be intimidated  by the actual workouts or anyone there. I have been going to the gym and working out for, what, four or five years now consistently? That sounds about right. This has been hands down one of the best experiences on my journey. First of all, there is no judgement, everyone is on a different level and its okay. If you’re one of the last people finishing a workout people cheer you on and support you. No ones yelling at you for not working hard enough, they are rooting for you to push through and complete the workout. Just finsish the workout and give it your all, that’s all that is expected. Now don’t get me wrong, I have loved my past gyms for several reasons. My first gym was where I found my love of working out and my badass Zumba instructor, Lauren, who has truly been a blessing to me and great motivation. Though my daughters dad is very much still involved, she has been my everything through learning how to be a single parent. There were days where I felt like I had no time for myself and was very focused on Aurora, as I should be. But, she’s one of the people who let me know its okay to take an hour for myself and that I NEEDED to to stay sane. I honestly wouldn’t be where I am on my fitness journey if it wasn’t for her. My previous gym before I switched to Crossfit is awesome in regards to the classes it offered, I tried Spin and fell in love with yoga there. I am still considering keeping my membership there so I can get my fill of both and I miss the people there as well.  The equipment is beyond amazing, but both gyms didn’t have what I need emotionally from a gym. Which just sounds strange, but its true and the best way for me to put it. The sense of community at a Crossfit box is entirely different than your standard gym atmosphere. I recommend my previous gym to everyone I meet though. You want state of the art equipment and effing amazing classes taught by awesome people, you’ll want to go there. But I needed more from it. I guess I’m not sure how to explain the sense of community at Crossfit in comparison to a gym aside from that everyday you have the same goal, the same workout to finish as everybody else. It’s not a competition against everyone, its you challenging yourself and being surrounded by people going through the same motions as you. Do people like to get better times or PR’s than other people? Duh, but its more so out of fun. I walk in for class and am greeted by people and have started to build relationships with these people. It is something you need to experience first hand, because I am doing a shit job explaining it haha. Anyways….so I love my “box”. There have been aspects of it that are challenging, such as all the different movements. But, I don’t hate any of it. Everyday presents itself with a new workout and new challenges. Double unders, hand stands and anything with the pull-up bar has been anything but easy for me. But, I will say double unders I am getting better at and just had to find the right rhythm and timing. Yes, I am doing 1-1-2-1-1-2 for the time being, but its better then doing a million singles during a workout. Hand-stands I just need to get my feet to the wall before my ass and I’m good. I end up laughing at myself a lot when doing hand stands. But, laughing at yourself is good, right? Now before I go into pull ups, I will throw out there that my upper body strength is not where I want it to be. A lot of my strength is in my legs, so squats and all of that haven’t really ever been an issue. So when it comes to pull-ups it is just sad. I scale down to jumping pull-ups most of the time, which is fine. I finally got down kipping swings, which will be helpful when I can do everything else. At first my brain was not understanding kipping swings at all. When I finally understood how to do it I wanted to kick myself a little because the movement itself is pretty simple. I was standing to the side one day and was watching everyone else do it and then it hit me, I had my ah-ha moment. I was usually facing everyone straight on and didn’t necessarily see the swinging movement and having my upper body forward while my legs are behind me. So I can now swing and get my knees to my chest, so hopefully in a few months I can actually get my toes to the bar. Another awesome thing about Crossfit is my child. Aurora goes with me sometimes to the classes and she loves it. She likes to be around everyone and jump in on the warm ups. Of course she would love to work out too, but she knows she has to be a lot older to do so. Spencer and Alicia, the owners of Crossfit Valley of the Moon, are so patient and accommodating with her. They let her hang out with them and “coach”. She is always so excited to go back and hates when I go without her.
Which, speaking of little, I have a five year old and it trips me out. Aurora has two Broadway Bound Kids productions under her belt and recently took hip-hop. Which was probably the cutest thing ever. She may or may not have had a mini crush on her teacher and I don’t blame her because he was so awesome with all the kids (and duh, he’s totally cute). My family loves music and to dance, so to have her share that same passion is so much fun, especially now when she throws down all of her new moves. Throw in the fact that she practices squats and burpees at home, she melts my heart. She’s way too cute for her own good and unfortunately she knows it. Last week we took our holiday pictures and she was a total ham! The morning was rough, like I said above we are going through some changes and some mornings are harder than others. That morning was just not good, we had a few tears and I was starting to get worried that I was about to waste money. But, thankfully she pulled through, she loved our photographer and we got some amazing shots of not just her but the two of us. Every moms dream right? A few pictures that make us look like we actually have our shit together?! I’m just going to go ahead and answer yes because some days we definitely don’t have it all together. But, I have her by myside to get through this crazy life and sometimes that’s all I need. Well, that and coffee. Aurora, coffee and crossfit.

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Thoughts

I Believe in You….

I am currently sitting in Peet’s enjoying  my 35th pumpkin spice latte of the Pumpkin season (I’m guesstimating here folks). I have had no inspiration on what to write and where to go with this site or even my life (I know what you’re all thinking…that escalated quickly). So, I was on the iTunes store looking to listen to some new music while I write and sketch today, hoping for some sort of inspiration and Michael Buble’s perfectly adorable face populated on my screen. He has a new album coming out, the first track is, “I Believe in You” and now I’m crying. Thanks Michael. I think I need to go have a good cry, I’m feeling a little verklempted.

It has been well over a year since I was let-go and I’m still stuck, for lack of a better word. I’m just literally stuck, I want to go after my dreams and my wants and have taken the necessary steps. But, then I think, “Well, Brooklyn, what’s the more practical route? What is best for everyone, not just you? Don’t be selfish.” I’m terrible and refer to myself in the third person when talking to myself, so what? who cares?. I have a guilty conscience and I never want to inconvenience other people. For 27 years I have tried to do what’s better for everyone else and when I do actually say no and do what I want, people freak out. Have I really hit that point where people are so used to me being so submissive and weak that I can’t be anything but that? That’s not fair and frankly, f*** that. I’ve had great opportunities presented to me and I turn them down, because I’m too busy thinking of everyone else but myself. Of course, my daughter comes first and I am not referring to her at all in all of this. One of the best things about a young child is that you get to come home to someone who see’s no flaws and just loves you. Literally we will be watching a movie and she’ll turn to me and tell me she loves me, and then the Grinch’s heart grows by one inch. Unless, of course she doesn’t get her way, then I am Maleficent or the Evil Queen. Which, I’m fine with, I want her to know I’m there for her but to also know I am the one making the rules. Anyways, last January I went back to school and everyone was incredibly supportive which was a beautiful thing to witness, my teachers were incredible and supportive as well. I was considering a more practical major that my heart wasn’t in 100%, it was there about 65% of the time, but it wasn’t my end all be all passion. Since I was 14 I have wanted to go FIDM, the fashion institute of design and merchandising. I wanted to study everything from styling, buying, designing bridal wear to designing shoes. Thirteen years later, and a few attempts later, I’m finally on the path to accomplish my dream. Most people have NO IDEA that fashion was ever a passion of mine, it’s my escape, my Neverland, so to speak. My sketchbooks are where I can be creative, kind of, and not think about anything but what my pencil and mind are creating. My dream is to design my wedding dress or my daughters, that would be an incredible achievement and something really special. When I was working at the winery I was introduced to the business side of things, I fell in love with marketing and wanted to know everything our marketing director was doing. We were going through a company change and the process of creating a new brand from an existing one and making a new “story” for the new brand was so fascinating. How are we going to take this product and make it new and fresh? So incredibly fascinating to me, especially in the wine industry. The wine industry I think is so much like the fashion industry. There are so many options out there, what are you going to do to make your product stand out from the rest. I could probably go one forever about this, so I’ll stop.

In June I went into my old emails to recover the contact information for my admissions advisor. I adore her and her enthusiasm, I knew I couldn’t do this process without her, again. Seeing her smiling face reassured me I was on the right path and the fact that she knew me so well. She knows my fears and insecurities and that I am constantly second guessing myself. This woman is the one pushing me and probably one of a handful of people that I don’t want to disappoint. Old habits are hard to break though, and mine are a pain in the butt. I think I’ve changed my final project two times now, as far as design go. There is so much riding on this, in my mind at least,  that I want it to be perfect. Though she is kindly reminding me that it doesn’t have to be perfect and what I have is great how it is, and to stop changing it. (insert monkey emoji covering it’s eyes). So, my goal is by Friday to have it submitted. Since I said I better hold myself accountable now.

Aside from working on my project I have also been trying to a lot better about what I am eating and working out. The past month and a half I have been slowly getting back into cutting out dairy and gluten, to an extent. My stomach and overall body has been feeling so much better. I started doing Zumba again, though it was only one class, I felt incredible afterwards. I’m hoping to work it back into my weekly routine of TRX, Spin, Yoga and my workouts I do in the gym on my own. I am also hoping to add Crossfit to all of that as well. But I’ll keep you all posted on that.

xoxo

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Thoughts

Beautiful Girl

Last Sunday our family received some really heart breaking news. A childhood friend to my cousins and one of my Aunts best friend’s daughter at the beautiful age of sixteen left us. Sixteen and did I mention beautiful? I wasn’t incredibly close with her, but I have known her since she was about seven years old, so it did hurt hearing those words. Her older brother and my cousin are still best friends to this day. I am not using a name on purpose, by the way. First of all, it is not my story to tell, nor my news to throw around. I am just choosing to more so speak on the topic of it.  Something I have been trying to do for a while now. This beautiful girls’ passing was unexpected and hit incredibly close to home for me. She left us because her pain was so deep and she unfortunately could not bear that burden any longer. That tore me apart, because I too at that age suffered from the same demons and continue to at the age of twenty-six. Depression is no joke and it angers me when people don’t take it seriously. Unless you have experienced it yourself you will NOT understand what goes through the mind of anyone who deals with it. I could explain it to you, how I feel on an almost daily basis and where my mind wonders and even then you wouldn’t understand. A lot and I mean A LOT of people think depression is a way to seek attention. Um, no in fact it is the opposite. I wanted zero attention when I was at my worst. Anyone who thinks that is just wrong. Now, I was never ever in a mindset to handle my depression like others do. I didn’t take anti-depressants. (But, that is also because I hid my depression and kept it very mum.) I couldn’t handle it in that way either, I would get anxiety just thinking of doing it. I wasn’t there, mentally, to do that. If anything, I wanted to hide my depression as far as I could, deep into my heart and soul. I wanted no one to know what I was going through. I was embarrassed by my depression. Anytime someone got mad at me for being sad or having those feelings of self- doubt, I got yelled at. Fuck that. If me expressing myself and the hurt I feel is only going to result in ridicule and people putting me down further then I already felt, I would rather just suffer and pretend like everything was okay. My depression had a lot to do with body image and just not feeling good enough. I didn’t feel beautiful, confident or smart and it’s not like anyone ever made me feel those things. I wrote then, as I write now. Writing about my feelings has always been the best way for me to get my feelings out there. At twenty-six I still battle these demons and I don’t hide from them anymore. Losing weight helped with that, not because I was getting more attention from peers, but rather because I wasn’t afraid to look in the mirror. I accepted my faults, my flaws, every single God-damn imperfection I had/have. The only way I was going to overcome those feelings was to embrace my body and accept the fact that I do have depression and it’s not going to go away. Also, I wasn’t going to let other people’s opinions about me get to me either. Knowing that it does get better and that there is a way to block the negativity is what breaks my heart for that beautiful girl who is no longer with us. Depression is real people and we all need to be more accepting to that and more accepting that we are not all the same and handle things so much differently. Knowing that she won’t experience pain anymore brings a little more peace to the situation, it is just unfortunate that she couldn’t find peace within herself while she was with us. Words can cut deeper than anything and I think we all need to be more aware of that. Discussing my depression any further is still difficult, I won’t lie. I am willing to talk about it with anyone and share my story and experiences. I definitely make an effort to try and reveal bits and pieces here in my writing, But putting it all out there all at once, is jus, ahhh, too much. So bear with me as I slowly reveal my acceptance of my depression. It is a huge piece in my journey these last few years and was something I hid from the world for 12 years. Baby steps people.

Kyndra and I embarked on our first hike of our 2016; 12 hikes, 12 restaurants. (Still a working title until we find something a lot better sounding.) Mount Tamalpais did us good and a park ranger named Carol was no help to us. After 10 miles we met two lovely women who helped us with our journey. It was an exhilarating 12 mile trek and I will be writing about that in a separate post. It was a great way to end my last weekend before school officially begins for me tomorrow morning at eleven am. I cannot believe it is already here and that I am a student again, lord help me.

 

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