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

Standard
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.

Standard
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

Standard
Adventures 2016

Mount Tamalpais | Ca’Momi

Time is flying people! I swear it was just January 20th and I was walking onto campus for my first day of classes. It is now February 17th, I turned 27 and am still loving my classes. But, can I just say how exhausted I am? I am doing so much right now and I love it. The exhaustion is real, but everything I am doing right now I am 100% vested in and it is awesome. We are focusing on Happiness still in my English 1A class and I am still really enjoying that. I find myself looking at myself differently in that regard and everyone around me. It’s pretty crazy.

Last month Kyndra and I hiked our first new trail and tried out a new restaurant. Both were amazing! We hiked Mount Tamalpais, in the rain. Not by choice, but I don’t think I would have changed anything about it. Kyndra is in her final year at Sonoma State and graduates this year (WOOHOO) and works full time and well I am in school and working as well so our schedules are pretty packed. So we try to plan everything at least a couple weeks in advance, so we don’t know what the weather will be like. It just happened that Northern California wanted to squeeze in some more rain. We began our hike at Pan Toll, thanks google maps. It was fine, the ranger told us to take Old Mine Trail to begin our trek to East Peak. It was all fine and dandy until we got a little turned around and went in a circle, literally. Thank god it was within the first 15 minutes of our hike and gave us a really good laugh. Our first goal was to get to West Point Inn. I honestly can’t remember the exact route we took, I know Bootjack was involved and that we ended up at the Mountain Theatre which was definitely a site to see. The rock amphitheater was incredible and the pictures I took do not do it justice, though the fog just made it seem for mysterious and like we stumbled upon some hidden gem. What was also beautiful was all of the waterfalls. The great thing about hiking in the fog, was being able to actually focus on our surroundings and not so much the view in the distance. We were feeling a little defeated at times though because we had no other view then what was in front of us. We couldn’t necessarily gauge where we were on the mountain, so we never knew how close or far away we were East Peak. When we eventually reached West Point Inn, we were so excited. We followed a road, instead of a trail, and found a stunning waterfall. At this point though, our map was starting to fall apart…we know, we should’ve taken a picture….we decided to take pictures and sneak in a snack break. Whilst sitting on the ground I looked over and there it was a trail marker, something we hadn’t seen in a while. We both ran over to it and investigated it to see where we were. Boom! Our first sitting of East Peak on a trail marker, we were so over the moon. We had been hiking for maybe 2 and half hours at this point and didn’t know if we would make it there. Another hour later and we made it to East Peak. We jumped around like two little kids and the best thing I could compare the feeling to, was like walking into Disneyland. Just pure happiness. We hiked up to the Fire Lookout. Not much to see other than the lookout itself, but we were still proud of ourselves. We went back down to the parking area and checked out the old railroad. They used to take people to the top by train where a hotel was once located. Honestly, I wish we still had things like that, how cool would that be to ride a train up and around the mountain. Maybe one day, someone with a lot of money will bring something like that back. We headed back down and were trying to go a much shorter way back to Pan Toll, well we ended up taking a longer route to West Point Inn, and it was so lame. We found our saving graces though, Harriet and Maeve. Two very experienced hikers who took us under their wings and showed us the Matt Davis trail, which they said the Ranger should’ve told us to go in the first place. Thanks Park Ranger Carol. It was great seeing another trail and talking with Maeve and Harriet. They have hiked so many places and had so many great suggestions for us to hike in the future. Despite getting turned around a couple of times, the Mt Tam hike will probably always be one of my favorites and Kyndra and I definitely want to go and hike all the other trails the mountain has to offer, hopefully when it’s sunny though!

For our restaurant to try in January we ended up at Ca’momi in Napa. It was a suggestion from one of my Uncle Joey’s friends, Kevin, who I have known since I was young. I ran into Kevin while on a walk with one of my friends in Sonoma. The conversation came up of food, of course, and he said he was on his way to Napa to pick up Pizza. Now, if you aren’t familiar with Sonoma and Napa County, Napa is about thirty-minutes away from Sonoma. I had to ask him, what pizza was that good to drive that far for? His answer was Ca’Momi. Well, from experience of having chef’s in the family, when they tell you something is good and you should try it, you just do it. No questions asked, you just go. I told Kyndra immediately and we knew that was the first place we had to go, who could say no to pizza? I mean really. Ca’Momi is located inside of Oxbow Market, which is really cool. I had never been there before so this just added to the experience. When we placed our order we took recommendations from one of the hosts. If the employees love it, then again, you listen to what they say. She told us to get the Inferno, which had house-cured spicy salami, gorgonzola, olives and onions on it. We also ordered the Burrata which had prosciutto, house made buratta and basil. Holy shit, both were simply amazing. If I had one tiny remark it would be that the Burrata have more fresh basil on it. Seriously though, best 20 dollars I have spent on a single pizza. It was Napoletana style and the best thin crust. It wasn’t thin and chewy, but instead soft and fluffy. I still dream about it and it was almost a month ago that I consumed it. You all should go try it when you get a chance and you certainly will not regret it.

Kyndra and I have hiked our next location and I can’t wait to tell you about how much I didn’t love it, ha-ha. No really, it was a pain in every sense.

MtTam_1MtTam_2MtTam_4MtTam_3MtTam_6MtTam_5MtTam_7MtTam_9MtTam_8MtTam_10

Standard
Get Healthy

Happiness…

Well here we are and I am at the end of my second week at school. I don’t hate it yet, which is a really good sign. I am actually enjoying all my classes and teachers as well. My fourth class is a late start, so that has yet to be decided how I feel about it, but I guess I’ll stay optimistic about it.

Thank you, by the way to the people who reached out to me about my previous post, it was greatly appreciated. Like I said, I don’t go looking for attention, if anything I want other people to feel comfortable with themselves and talking about the things that aren’t easy to talk about. I love you amazing, beautiful people.

The world has a crazy way of bringing us bad news and then following those events with lessons. My lessons from the passing of beautiful girl and depression is coming through the way of my English class. Of course, right? Well, anyways our focus is happiness. The first book we are reading from is called the Pursuit of Happiness. The cover is pretty cute, it has a basket full of puppies. Did you get that? A BASKET FULL OF PUPPIES. My teacher wasn’t impressed, but I find it funny, what’s better than a basket full of puppies, think about it. I’d take a basket full of puppies over a cup of coffee or even free tacos. That’s right, I said it, deal with it. Ugh, but really, I want a puppy, I want a golden retriever or lab. Anyways, so the pursuit of happiness. We are all on some sort of pursuit to find happiness and be happy. Me, I always say I’m going to Neverland. That’s my happy place, my thoughtful spot as Pooh Bear puts it. The first essay we read from was an excerpt from “How Happy Are You and Why?” by Sonja Lyumbomirsky. Honestly, it wasn’t my favorite thing to read and I feel like I didn’t get much from it. She focused A LOT on the scientific studies of why we are happy and how scientists try to determine why or why not we are happy. Some scientists believe we are born with the “Happiness Set-Point”. The Happiness Set-Point at birth is 50%, 10% of our happiness will be determined by life circumstances and 40% by Intentional Activity (I.E. what’s under our control). While that is definitely interesting, I’m not very certain that I can back that up 100% or agree with it. I don’t know if being a mom changes how I feel about it, but seeing my baby girl I couldn’t imagine her being born with anything less than 90% for her Happiness Set-Point. Leaving 10% for the other two. So much is out of her control and circumstances are hard to determine. In my opinion at least, but also I am no scientist, so who am I to say. Sonja also discussed how they believe genetics have a lot to do with it as well. They did studies on twins, both identical and fraternal, and no matter what was going on for both in their lives and where they were, they still felt the same about life which was pretty cool.

Celestino Fernandez gave a lecture at SRJC a couple years ago and our first assignment was to watch it and take notes on it. I loved his lecture and what he had to say about happiness and I recommend people to watch it. If, that is, you want some better understanding on happiness and discover that people have been studying happiness since the beginning of time. While he did talk a lot about statistics, he kept reinstating the fact that we have the ability to determine our happiness. We can change our current life circumstances, we can do so many things to help us become happier people. He said and studies have shown that social interaction, going outside, listening to your favorite music, being healthy, it all can lead to happiness. Fact, unhappy people watch 20% more television than the average people. Now, I know Netflix is changing the game a bit and we all have a binge day. But, what they are getting at is people who sit inside in front of a television for hours, every day, with no social interaction and don’t go outside and enjoy nature are unhappy. If you know me I completely agree that people change their intention activity. Circumstances can be hard to change, but they can be for sure to an extent of course. It took me a very long time to accept my demons and find my Neverland. So when I am around people complaining about mundane things or things that are easily fixed or attainable I get so irritated. Life is there and ours for the taking and some people just let it waste away, how awful.

I was 205 pounds people, I am the last person you want to tell that it’s hard to lose weight. I lost 45 pounds don’t tell me how hard it is, I know very well how hard it is…but I also know how fucking easy it is. I had someone who I love very much come to me and ask me for advice and that made me so happy. It’s not easy coming to terms and saying I want to make a change and asking people for help. That doesn’t make me irate, it’s when people talk about it and do absolutely nothing. Don’t be a “DNB” (do nothing bitch) as Ronda Rousey so kindly puts it. Don’t tell the single mom who was working full time that you don’t have time to work out. Don’t tell the woman who has two mouth to feed that’s it hard to buy, eat, and cook healthy food. I’ll give everyone that it is hard to cut out foods, but it’s totally do-able. And please don’t blame it on your heritage. I’m Italian, Spanish and Portuguese. My favorite foods consist of Italian and Spanish faire. I could eat tacos and pizza all day. It is so easy to make alternatives and it inspires me when my friends find healthy twists on some of my favorite foods. My sister, is a smoothie master and so incredibly good about drinking green tea. I try to get on her level, but I’m not there yet. Green Tea is taking some time for me to adjust to since I am not normally a tea drinker, but I’m getting there. My girl Jenna has been feeding me delicious and bomb-ass soups. Soup is so versatile and you can literally throw anything it and she does. Goddamn does she make soup like a goddess ha. Seriously though you can throw anything in a soup, like kale. Oh my god, kale in soup is so good and a great way to enjoy it if the taste is way too intense for you. Kate, makes sweet potato tacos and zoodles like a goddamn boss. Her spiralizing and cooking skills are out of this world. Momma Jenna & Kate, I’m hungry now! Ha-ha. Also when it comes to substituting foods, it is hard at first but you have to stick with it. When I first started taking away dairy for my diet (and diet as in what I eat on a normal basis, not diet for losing weight purposes) and my coffee drinks, it took a good 2-3 weeks before soy tasted semi normal. You can’t try something once or twice and then give up, did you give up riding a bike or tying your shoes because it didn’t click the first two times? No. Now you are, hopefully, a bike riding and shoe tying boss. Now I have switched to almond milk and find soy too sweet. Your taste buds and stomach will and do adjust, you just have to give it time. You put time into so many aspects of your life, your friends, family, and school. So I can’t wrap my mind around the thought of people not putting or taking the time to look at what they eat and see what changes they can make to be healthier all around.

The topic of being healthy came up a lot in the happiness discussion and I can back that up 100%. Not so much because I have lost weight, but because my overall health has improved. I have a healthier mind and look at my curves and love the shit out of them. I’ve grown to love my thick thighs and calves. I may not love my stomach, but I still appreciate my body because of the hard work I put into it. When you work incredibly hard at something the end results are so much better and satisfactory. You’ve pushed yourself further then you thought you could and pushed your body to do things you didn’t think it was capable of doing. Your body is a like a car, you have to take care of it or else you’ll run it straight to the ground. Even with my four year old, I have so much more energy than I did in high school. I honestly could sit here and talk about health has become such a part of my journey to being a much happier person and how it has helped fight my demons, but then I might really start to bore you. But either way, find your happiness people. It’s out there, it just isn’t going to come to you out of thin air.

Standard
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.

 

Standard
Get Healthy

Bye, Bye, Bye…2015

Saying goodbye. No one truly enjoys it and sometimes it can be hard. Saying good-bye to twenty-fifteen and trying to leave everything in the past has been, well, trying. Every year is a good year, there will always be ups and downs, but you have to focus on the positive. Which is what I always, always try to do, focus on the positive. I look for the best in situations and in people. That seems to be where I get myself into trouble though. Maybe trouble isn’t the best way to describe it, but it’ll do for now. I’m pretty good with good byes and “letting go”, but still each one leaves a little mark on your heart.

I had a friend and like all my friends, I want the best for them. I look for the best in anyone and want to only lift them higher. I want them to see everything I see in them. Their beauty, their strengths, even their weaknesses because we all have weaknesses and flaws. That’s what makes us all so beautiful, our flaws and imperfections. People need to learn to appreciate these things instead of being ashamed of them. But, anyways, so this particular friend, of course, was a guy. I enjoyed my time spent with him, laughing and talking, what have you. I always saw potential for the friendship to grow and it seemed like he would hold back if I got too close. Things would be good and then they’d be weird. It drove me crazy, like bat shit insane crazy. It was this back and forth thing between us that eventually led to him not wanting to lead me on and telling me twice “I deserved better”. That is such a cop out for people to say and I hate it. Who are you to decide what I deserve in this life? More than anything, to me, it meant that he wasn’t ready or in his mind, maybe,  I was the one undeserving of him and his time. I couldn’t hate him for his opinion though, but it seemed more like his way of pushing me away. Cool. I get it, you get your heartbroken and it’s scary to jump into something new. But, just because one person hurt you doesn’t mean I will be the same or the situation will. This was always frustrating me, with him, that I couldn’t understand his thought process. If you’ve been hurt in the past, be open with people about it. If you’re not ready for a relationship or don’t see me in that way, then tell me. I’m not going to be mad, if anything I will be appreciative for the honesty. You just saved us both time. But, instead, people choose to avoid those conversations and drag things out. I know – it seems like I have high expectations, but damn it, why wouldn’t I? I have a daughter to think about and though I am never looking for a Dad for her, I want this person to not only be amazing in my eyes, but great in hers too. My expectations were high because I saw what this person had to offer and could give. I also saw something in them that I don’t think they saw in themselves. Long, long story short…he got his way. He pushed me away by being someone that I feel deep down into my veins, my marrow that he isn’t. I wouldn’t say this was heartbreaking for me, but more-so heartbreaking to witness. How could someone who is loved by a lot of people, and just a great guy not see that about himself? Or I could just be lying to myself to make myself feel better and maybe he is a jackass. He isn’t though and I wish that one day he does find whatever it is he is looking for and is happy. I’ve never been confident or been aware of my worth, but this situation showed me what I had to offer. I feel like I am pretty awesome person. My body is improving, it’s not perfect but I think I’ve got great curves, so whatevs. Haha. But, seriously this person, without knowing it, has taught me so many things about myself that I didn’t know. They will never know, but I am thankful for that. I am thankful for him putting me through hell sometimes and for being an asshole, and I mean that in very loving way of courseJ. I know what I want from the man I’m potentially with. I don’t want someone who will give me excuses or try to feed me beautiful words served to me on a rose-gold platter. I want honesty and someone who’s not scared to tell me how they really feel. To tell me about their fears or how they have been hurt in the past. I want the raw emotions and someone who isn’t scared of their feelings and for having feelings.

The other part of twenty-fifteen that was hard to let go was job of three and a half years. I had many wonderful memories made there and met amazing people. I have been so lucky to have walked away with those friendships. A few of us are in a group chat and it is pretty hilarious. We have shared our ups, and some downs but most importantly, laughs. It’s been a challenge to find something comparable to Viansa, but I don’t doubt something will come a long. I start school in less than a week and I wouldn’t be at this point if it wasn’t for not being at the winery anymore. I’m still bouncing back and forth between two majors, I am undecided as to where I want my education and career to take me in life. It’s a scary and exciting time. Little is making the switch into preschool from her daycare and I am so excited. My siblings and I all went to this preschool in town and my mom has taught there for forever pretty much. She will be retiring after the year so it will be fun have her last year be with Aurora. There is just so much paperwork, holy shit. I understand why the need it…but to be honest I can’t remember exactly when we started potty-training her or other things. Aurora hit big milestones on the younger side of when kids are supposed to. Guess, I’ll have to pull out those baby books I started. Key word, started. You tell me how many people you know with completed baby books before you pass judgment onto me ha-ha. I don’t even think my mom finished mine. That may be something to complete this year. Okay, maybe that’s clearly me being ambitious…never mind. Sorry Aurora!

With goodbyes, come new opportunities, new hellos and new challenges to face. With twenty-sixteen I am so excited for everything that is coming my way, goals I have for myself and things I want to accomplish. One of my dearest and best friends and I have set a pretty cool goal for us to accomplish this year and I am so, so, so excited for it! We are embarking on a 12 month journey of our beautiful valley and bay area. One new hiking trail and one new restaurant a month. 12 hikes, 12 restaurants. This makes me so happy. I am almost 27 and have been blessed to grow up in this beautiful valley with amazing food. So, it’s time to get out there explore and I am excited to have my friends at my side for the journey. I will, of course, be documenting this and telling you all about it.

Till next time! xoxo

Standard