Sunday, March 11, 2018

Face Your Fears - Pic Heavy!

I ended my last blog with a note about facing your fears. Let me clarify, I do not mean you should hope for yourself to be in a terrible situation so you can be fearless. That's insane, a bit morbid, and doesn't exactly work that way. Ha! What I meant was that we should embrace new situations, find how subtle fears affect us and find ways to address them.

I've actually had numerous opportunities the last few months to do exactly that. I've put myself in a position where I'm having to stand on my own two feet without emotional crutches or comfort blankets. I'm living on my own again (per se - I do have a roommate). I've started a new job after being at the same agency for 9.5 years! (This was absolutely terrifying by the way!)
Almost a decade of my life memorialized!
What I see on my first day as a PM...

I'm putting myself out there, trying to meet new people, form new connections. I've taken solo weekend trips, I've gone on road trips with friends, I'm seeking the world and new experiences.

A few pics from my Cali road trip with one of my bestest buds:

A soul expanding solo hiking trip in Arkansas:
127 Hours anyone?

Mid-hike perch view.

Evening View

Those trails tho.

A winged beast.

Road-tripping across North Carolina was f'in amazing:

Best friends since 6th grade!

I'm definitely a water sign...

The water was SO warm on the Outer Banks!
I've bought a house, because, uh, I guess that's the grown up thing to do? Just kidding, I know it's a good tactic, it's all about investment in today's world. Some people would say these are all fabulous things and sounds like I should be on Cloud 9 and this is absolutely true! However, being human and taking all these leaps when life has felt stagnant for 2 years... it's pretty scary. It takes realizing that you've identified yourself with everything that you've surrounded yourself with for 30+ years and letting that go, to not just toe the line of your comfort zone but to shatter that comfort zone. Ultimately, the goal is to have no comfort zone. To find comfort in just being.

Yoga and meditation have fallen to the side a little bit the last couple of weeks, which is just awful because I really could have saved myself some self-inflicted grief if I'd been practicing. With closing on my house and starting a new job within a couple weeks of each other, I kinda freaked out and got stuck in my head for a bit. It took a moment this past week where I spiraled into myself to get back to meditating and Yoga. A moment of clarity and a conversation with a friend reminded me that all the conflict in my life is created in my head. I mean sure, someone could physically harm me, and I would suffer because of it, but the intensity of my suffering is all dependent upon my reactions. There's a sense of comfort in this.

During my two year shut-in on myself, I stopped caring about not only myself, but other people. I think I've written about this before, but grief is the most selfish emotion I've ever experienced. Now that I'm waking up from that nightmare, I find myself caring more than I did before my brother's death. This is scary, too, because I've always associated caring with vulnerability. But wouldn't it be a beautiful thing if you could care more about people and the world without losing yourself, your core, your love in the process? I find myself fascinated with people, fascinated with their quirks, their talents, their idiosyncrasies, their motivations, their humor. God, I love laughing. I'm not 100% certain, but I believe this intensity can be intimidating. I wouldn't be surprised if my openness and bluntness freaks people out, too. What's the point in trying to hide or protect yourself though? Why can't we all let these walls down and show who we are? There's  nothing to be ashamed of, whatever you've buried deep inside.... someone else has been there. In fact, it's likely we've all been there, we're just too scared to admit it. Maybe it's fear of admitting it to ourselves?

What I'm learning the most though, is that it's not necessarily just about having all the experiences, it's about who you have them with. I value my lone experiences tremendously, because who better to enjoy time with than myself? But I so love my people, my soul tribe, my crew, so to speak. I value the people that are a speck on my lifetime, the ones that stay, the ones that leave, the ones consistent to the eras, the ones that come and go through time... every person, every encounter is invaluable and has had a part in shaping me to be who I am. I am grateful for all of it, there IS a lesson in everything. Course there are the peeps whom I'm so connected to that we're never apart and these guys..... There are no words.


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