I feel it coming…

img_7411Photo Credit: carleyjayne photography

“Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year.”

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

My blog is dusty. But, it has settled and I can see clearly now. (Cue the music).

My lack of posting is not due to writers block (thank the gods), but more-so self care is the culprit.  How can I write all the things (profound and personal, ridiculous and irrelevant), if I have personal work to do first?  My iPhone notes are covered in musings and observations, feelings and lessons learned, original quotes, that have developed over the past almost year since I’ve really published anything consistently.

If you’re still here reading this little blog of mine, thank you. I appreciate that you find something in it that feels worth your precious time.  Really I do, more than you know.

It’s not new that 2016 was a doozy for me (and many of you) personally…but we warriored through and survived because we’re bad ass humans who are resilient and capable of doing hard things.

Enter 2017, amirite? It was like 2016 woke up the morning of December 31, hungover AF (because the holidays) and was like, “damn, this shit has been CRAZY. Tonight it’s all gonna change.” And 2017 laughed hysterically and was like, “Hold my Bloody Mary, watch this!”

It’s continued to be another year of struggle, lessons, mistakes, frustrations, wins, and all the things, mostly in a global sense. Pretty sure I just put that SO lightly.  Let’s be real…2017 was a universal DUMPSTER FIRE.  Nationally, we let the most unqualified, misogynistic, narcissist come into the highest power office in the world.  Who then tried to make an immigration ban a thing, attempted to deny rights to women and their bodies, pulled us out of the Paris Climate Agreement, went on to reverse the ban on importing elephant and rhino trophies, denied the rights of some of our most vulnerable communities, continued hiding behind his Twitter feed to launch threats and (almost) nuclear war with N. Korea, took away Net Neutrality, our affordable healthcare, and so many more depressing and shocking moves that would be an entire post on its own and he who must not be named and his ministry of evil don’t deserve that.  Hollywood got the series of wake up calls it needed (insert prayer emoji) and men realized it was time to sit the hell down and shut up.  Globally, there have been some wins for LOVE and marriage equality, some serious statements made in terms of government, big moves made to stand up for the planet and against American bullies, fear, success, hard work, ethics, business, and progressive action.

Personally, I’ve actually had a pretty damn good year in my modest little city life. There have been some bumps, to be sure, but it’s been good due to the self care, self development, and hard ass work I’ve put in to let go of some heavy baggage. BYEEE!  When the hard work must be done, the best way to get through it is taking a serious inventory of your tribe.  I don’t even know how, but I have managed to surround myself with the absolute best humans and I thank the stars every millisecond for my good fortune to have them by my side.  I had some wins in matters of the heart, because I finally started truly listening to mine.  I found the art of self care and took action to make space for more ME in my daily life.  This brought me to meditation, back to yoga, reading books, writing, photography, doodling and handlettering, nutrition, holistic health, and so many other positive things.  This year I gave myself the gift of well, myself.  Sounds selfish maybe or self involved, but really, while working on letting go of the past, I found even more me, and that’s pretty damn cool.  Learned to like myself, fall deeper in love with myself, and never take for granted all that I have and am capable of manifesting.  Which brought me to finding my path in life and choosing to enroll in school to become a nutritionist in holistic health.  HOLLA.

I worked hard at my job, my family life, my friendships, my budget, my heart, trusting my gut…I put myself first when I needed to and sacrificed myself for others.  I grew more into my activist, feminist AF, outraged, woke, humanitarian self and posted about ocean conservation and the effects of climate change.  I attended an amazing and peaceful immigration rally, donated to organizations making big things happen, called my congress people, my senators, signed petitions, engaged in enlightening conversations, and used my privilege to do a little more good for the world.

I drank gallons of coffee, wine, whisky, water, and power. Then I threw myself out into the world of millennial dating and was vulnerable and fiercely myself.  I collected stories, cry laughed A LOT, shared stories, made people almost pee from cry laughing so hard (because dating is ridiculous), trusted myself more, realized I owe no one anything, stood up for myself, shared opinions, was brutally honest, said what I needed to say, even when it was scary.

I don’t want to give too much away just yet on the dating front because I’ve got a series coming for you and I won’t even try to be humble, it’s GOOOOD. Because it’s real mother effing life and it’s relatable, guaranteed.

I encourage you to pour a drink, like a strong one. Don’t even worry about that “on the rocks” shit. Ice melts. And you know what that does to your drink? It waters it down. Nah. You don’t need that kind of negativity in your life. You need a stiff one. Because you’re going to read my series and laugh with me as I share the bits and pieces of my dating life over the last year +.

Stay tuned.

Sexless and the City…it is coming.

Oh and happy new year!  Seriously, whether it was one of the best or worst of your life, you get 365 fresh ones to write your story, don’t waste it.  Make every day the best day in the year.  2018…it’s going to be a goody, I feel it coming.

Thanks for sticking with me.

Xx,

h

img_7414Photo Credit: carleyjayne photography

So this is the New Year…

“Ring out the false, ring in the true.”  -Alfred Lord Tennyson

I realize this post about the New Year comes about 5 months and 30 days tardy, but I always arrive fashionably late so deal with it.

Writing is hard.  Like once I start going for it, it becomes this easy thing like breathing and it just flows out of me.  What I mean when I say it’s hard is that it’s raw, it’s naked, and it forces feelings to come to the surface that let’s face it, we as adult humans get really good at setting aside.  I want to try my hardest not to do that so often and I have been working on it, trust me…just haven’t so much been writing about it.  Writing for me is one of the most vulnerable things I do…and it’s been hard for me to allow myself to go there for awhile.

(Truth time: I started writing this post shortly after the new year, then again in March…it’s July tomorrow…just sayin’.)

Let me give you a little recap of what the last year was like in the life of me

I’ll just lay the disclaimer right out there on the table: 2016 was literally the HARDEST WORST F*CKED PAINFUL ETC. year of my whole damn life.  Not exaggerating, not emphasizing for dramatic effect, this is just a fact people.

I began 2016, well, 9 days into last year, by getting my ass kicked.  Physically, yeah…that happened.  Assaulted.  Shoulder grabbed, yanked down to the ground, kicked, hair pulled, drug through the dirt, personal space violated, and expensive technology stolen, by a couple of females.  I won’t go into more detail than that, but it was some scary and eye-opening shit.   I came out of it fine other than some cuts and scrapes, a really bad hair day, and some new emotional baggage to work through oh and a residual shoulder injury that still gives me a really hard time to this day.  Things could have been a lot worse and I am so grateful that it’s all behind me now.  Moment of gratitude to thank the people who helped raise me, who gifted me the ability to see perspective in a tough experience, take the hard, and turn it into empathy.  Being able to look at situations of adversity from the other side is not an easy mission, but it is sometimes the most important piece.  I didn’t just have to take time to heal through that experience for myself, but for the young women who’s lives have brought them to a place where taking that kind of physical action as opposed to using communication is their way of life.  Perspective is power…that was lesson 1 last year.

Some of you that have been following along my random adventures over the past few years know that I spent last summer in Portland, unemployed/FUNemployed (most days), and that I headed back to Seattle late last summer to start fresh in the city I have called home for most of my adult life and second home the rest of my life.  Making Seattle home again wasn’t a decision that came easy or one that was written in the stars for me like I expected it to be.  Since returning to the states, it’s been a long time coming actually.  I couldn’t be happier to be back though, settled into my little cottage oasis in the city that has changed so much over the years, and be working and doing life near my friends and family again.

Fall came in hot with a new nanny job which I LOVE, closing a door on a REALLY f*cking tough love (yeah, that old chestnut FINALLY dropped from the tree for good in October-stay tuned…that vulnerability is coming), and a newfound sense of freedom and self love.  When people say that finding your balance in life is a journey, they’re actually not even a little bit kidding.  And what an adventure it’s been…

I’ve always been fiercely independent, strong willed, and SO open hearted…and truth be told, despite A LOT of heartache and disappointment, it’s NEVER steered me wrong.  With all the trials and tribulations that 2016 brought me in personal health and wellbeing, emotional stability, heartache, mistakes, trust, listening, being heard, self-care, relationships, all that life shiiiiiit,  I have never learned harder, the value of following your own gut instincts…yeah, that was lesson 2.  Now that I’ve (almost) mastered it (real talk, I’m always going to be a work in progress and what brilliant work it is!), I am living a really great version of my life and coming out on top of all the bullshit I survived last year, is a feeling of raw empowerment like I’ve never known.

Through that empowerment, I had to make some really difficult decisions and cull some relationships in my life that were providing me with nothing, but toxicity and draining my heart and soul.  I’ve written about how friend break ups are some of the hardest we experience in adulthood, the factor that makes that one the most challenging, is having to do the work to forgive the people we have to let go of…even when they don’t say they are sorry.  You guessed it…lesson 3, forgiveness.

I chose to disconnect from a 12 year friendship with someone who seemed to be dead set on walking the path towards the pool where Narcissus died.  I knew my love of Greek mythology would be forever, but I didn’t know until last year how painful it could be.  I let go of the BIG love of my life or more brutally, it walked out on me and slammed the door.  Where pain, ego, secrets, insecurities, passion, trust, empathy, unconditional love, fear, were present and thriving and also drowning.  The demise was a long time coming (as you’ve likely gathered), sadly ending an almost 7 year best friendship in its wake.  Freshly reeling from this loss, in the same 72 hours, I had to set hard boundaries with a soul friend who has been a love in my life, but who I felt I’d started enabling; a rapid spiral where love and lie gets so brutally blurred.  I’m not sure where this one will end, my heart remains so hopeful that the shadows can find the light again and if not, the love I have for this person will never cease and the forgiveness work has been done; it will always run deep and eternal.

So in review, 2016 brought a physical ass beating and then continued to mentally and emotionally kick my ass ALL. YEAR. LONG.

12 months. 356 days (yeah that’s 365 minus those first 9 days that seemed so bad ass)…of some hard damn times.  But, being ever the optimist that I try daily to be, those days were the most character building of my life thus far.  Even more so than my backpacking days in the land down under, more so than my crazy college times, more so than any other time life prepared me to survive and thrive through some serious shit storms.  I have come into 2017, a new year, so much stronger, so much lighter, more empowered, more focused, more in love with myself than I’ve ever been and the momentum keeps building.

I have a strong feeling that the final days of this year will be some of the greatest I’ve known, because…really, when all is said and done, when all the false and heavy has been laid to rest, it is the truth we have to live for.  The truth is what gives everyday the chance to be our new best day.

Hoping 2017 has brought you all happiness and health and that the coming days are some of your best!

Cheers,

h

Love Actually…{Part I}

“Love yourself first and everything else falls in line.  You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.”  –Lucille Ball

ME_468_AcceptingSelfLoveImage Cred: The Googles

Ah, love.  The word, the feeling, the one intangible thing that has the power to build you up and also tear you down.  Lately, the universe has been bringing me conversations surrounding the topic; I’ve had some personal battles with it recently and have also had some discussions with a few important dudes in my life and it has inspired some deep thought.

It seems to me that the human condition when it comes to matters of the heart has created this idea that we must constantly seek that which we don’t have.  We want what we can’t get.  When we get it, we don’t want it anymore and continue searching for something else to obtain.  You can understand how this becomes a very dangerous game when you’re playing with people’s hearts.  We walk around, existing under the idea that the grass is always greener on the other side.  Which is completely ridiculous since most of us just forgot to turn on the bloody hose and water our own lawn…or we’ve left the hose on too long and drowned the poor thing.  In my not so extensive dating experience, I have found that women have this same mentality when dating The Asshole.  You know what I’m about to dig into…it’s okay.  Save your “monkey see” emoji for a later time and listen up.

For us ladies out there, we’ve all dated The Asshole guy.  Sometimes, we’re even awesome enough to date several…our roaring 20s are good for that.  We get kicked to shit by them, eventually inducing a wish for someone nice to come around and treat us right.  With this wish for the nice kind of guy, we throw in an added bonus wish that we’ll acquire just a DASH of common sense as we enter the next round of dating, hoping to take action with the red flags that pop up.  Enter The Nice Guy.  He can serve our wants and needs for a time, but eventually, we sabotage him and his “niceness”.  The Nice Guy is just “too nice” we tell ourselves and our best girlfriends over dirty martinis at happy hour.  We eventually just wish that The Nice Guy would be more of a dick like our dear ex, The Asshole.  But why?  Why in all the things in this world that are holy and sacred would we want to ruin a perfectly good thing once we finally got what we’d been wishing for?!

Because: society.  We’ve been conditioned by society and also conditioned by ourselves to never be satisfied with what we have; we are always striving to attain more.  Because nothing is ever good enough.  You see, we’re told that perfection is out there, that we can acquire it.  And we believe it!  So we continue galloping off on our unicorns searching for our knights in shining armor and ending up with losers in aluminum foil.   I’ll just take a moment here to remind everyone the definition of an important word:

in·san·i·ty

inˈsanədē/

noun

extreme foolishness or irrationality.

My personal favorite: The definition of insanity, is, doing the exact same f*cking thing over and over again, expecting shit to change. That. Is. Crazy.  Thank you Urban Dictionary.

This is why women of a certain age start settling.  We settle for the “good on paper” guys.  Type A personalities who seem to have their general shit together, are nice, practical, planners.  In my personal translation {please take no offense you good on paper people out there–the world needs you too!}, boring as f*ck.  I only speak from my personal dating experience here.

Women my age who have dated The Asshole Guy or the emotionally blocked guys… hopped on the roller coaster of adventure into the unknown world of spontaneity, risk and inevitably other unsafe emotional places…eventually get tired.  Like we get so damn, EXHAUSTED of the let down, the not knowing, the hurt, the general asshole-isms…all of it.  So we settle for safety and security with someone that we love…but that love might require us to convince ourselves it’s really there half the time.  Unfortunately for thrill seeking women out there in dating land {hey girl heyyy!}, the good on paper guy isn’t random, spontaneous and full of adventure.  We’re going to pick The Nice Guy we maybe aren’t head over heels in love with out of fear that the roller coaster Asshole Guy won’t ever grow up, make you a safety harness that works and get his shit together enough to be with you.  And women get scared.  Get ready to clinch your teeth…it’s coming…in overly dramatic form of course…

Eventually, the hard and sad truth of it, is that a lot of women just want to be “rescued”.  Plus, there’s that whole biological clock ticking thing that happens right around age 28 for most of us with ovaries.  The Nice Guy is the one who can provide you with the picket fence, the golden retriever and the 2.some random decimal that doesn’t exist, babies.  You’ll have sex once a year for the rest of your marriage.  {YAY! Insert thumbs down emoji here.}  Then possibly wake up one day in your early 40s or 50s, the kiddos are living their own lives, and you realize that you have nothing in common with the person you’re sharing a bed with in your house with the picket fence that your tired, old golden retriever leaves hair all over.  This is one of the many reasons spouses start to resent each other’s very existence and why many marriages end in divorce.  Isn’t it a happy cycle?!  *Disclaimer: as mentioned above, this is a dramatization.  I am not a marriage counselor or licensed therapist, just one of those female homo sapiens who is intuitive and has opinions.*

Before you stop reading, thinking this is just a cynical rant dripping with “relationship hate”, stay with me; it’s going to get good in part II.