Avoidance

Yikes! Avoidance, I know it all too well. The funny thing about it is that sometimes you can't simply connect the dots on why you're avoiding something, or what at your core you're actually avoiding. Sometimes it just hits you like a sack of bricks and you're like… f&$@.

Yesterday it dawned on me that I had been avoiding something major in my life. I made excuses, I procrastinated, I blamed others and even got angry with others until I realized this was my beast of burden.

For me, I had lived in a delusional state thinking that if I ignored the problem long enough it would go away, it didn't. Instead, it grew bigger and bigger until I felt consumed by it and trapped. I felt overwhelmed and scared.

Last night, I talked to my best friend about this issue and she was so incredibly supportive. Sometimes just saying something out loud gives it less power. Sharing something with someone and asking for help made me feel more in control.

Apart from her listening and not judging me, she helped me think of next steps. This is what love is. For the first time, I felt cared for in a way that I hadn't in a very long time. My anxiety eased and I felt at peace with the universe.

I woke up today and a new day presented itself. A brand new chance to start over and to chip away at my now less intimidating monster. So, I started the day with a new workout class, Bari Bounce Lab. I entered the studio to open arms by one of my best friends who hugged me and loved me. I then got out of my comfort zone and bounced my heart out on a mini trampoline to amazing music and a bomb instructor.

When I walked out of the studio I felt an insane amount of gratitude. We get so caught up in the day to day. So caught up in avoiding the things we should be prioritizing that we forget to give thanks. Life is nothing without relationships.

The issue I had been avoiding made me feel alone. Today, as I walked out of the studio I realized just how far from alone I am.

I have best friends who are family who provide advice and help in times of need. I have mentors who advise me and deeply care about my professional success and personal development. I have trainers who fill me with inspiration and make me stronger each class. I have colleagues who hold me accountable and push me to be my best by stretching me. I have wonderful doormen and staff at my apartment building who keep me safe and listen to my stories. And biological family. The list goes on…

I owe it to myself and to the people who keep me going to embrace my challenges with a positive attitude. I don't believe in looking back, but every now and then it's nice to reflect on accomplishments. They can remind you of your strength and ability to crush any roadblock that comes your way.

So, I encourage you while encouraging myself to abandon avoidance and take back control. I tend to want immediate results and I'm learning that life is about consistency. You have to try and try and try until you see change. Nothing worth having/accomplishing comes easy anyway.

Xx.

Go Where You Are Celebrated

Wow! It feels exciting and scary to be blogging again. I started Big Apple Little Seed years ago to share my New York experiences with friends, family and the worldwide web. I was very consistent and found so much joy in writing. I stopped blogging and picked up other pastimes, some good and some bad. For years, I wrestled with the decision of whether or not to blog again. I started a personal website, but it felt way too formal. I started blogging about my dating life, but I didn’t feel inspired.

It wasn’t until today that I felt inspired and clear on what I wanted to do next. I owe my clarity and inspiration to my friends and family. This past week, I was going through a lot and my friends and family showed up. Last night, my girlfriends and I got dressed up, pranced around the city, danced on stage at Public, made new friends, and laughed until we quite literally cried.

Last night, I injured myself. I was walking up the steps of Public’s stage and checking someone out simultaneously and the universe wasn’t having it. I busted my ass. I woke up with a foot the size of my face and have had to spend the day rotating frozen Brussel sprouts from my knee to my ankle. I don’t do very well with down time. I like to keep moving and going and accomplishing something. So, being a lard all day has felt a bit out of my comfort zone. That said, it’s led me to major realizations.

Throughout my day, my friends and family called and texted me. They offered to help me, to bring me things, to take me to the doctor. They reminded me that they love me and they made me smile. So tonight, I want to honor these lovely humans and share what having solid female friendships has done for me personally and how these women have changed my life.

If you know me, you know that I’ve been through some really awful experiences. Who hasn’t? We all have obstacles and pain that we can use to propel us, or bring us down. I’ve been betrayed time and time again by some of the people I’ve loved in my life. This betrayal was across various relationships, but tonight, I want to focus on the impact female friend betrayal has had on me.

I tend to greet everyone with open arms. This means that when I meet someone, I assume the best until they’ve proven otherwise. I’ve gotten myself in trouble from assuming that everyone deserves your trust and loyalty before they’ve earned it. I’ve learned the hard way that everyone has the capacity to betray your trust and you have to be careful about opening up to people before you know their true colors.

I’ve been burned throughout my life by those whom I considered family. Due to this, I unknowingly lived life thinking that if I allowed females to get close to me, they would stab me in the back. I’ve always been incredibly independent, so I began relying on myself even more through hard times. I got tired of surface friendships and surrounding myself with people I had to censor myself with. I lost interest in surrounding myself with those who made me feel bad about myself, those who constantly made me feel like I was doing something wrong, with those who didn’t make me feel inspired.

2016 was one of hardest years I’ve ever had. It was lonely. There were the friends I still carry today, but I was working through things and changes and my life holistically was in Β a transitional state. Carrie Bradshaw nailed it when she said in New York City, you’re always looking for an apartment, job, or boyfriend. If everything in your life is perfectly aligned, you’re a walking miracle.

2017 has shown me the beauty and power in strong, positive and inspiring female friends. At the beginning of this year, one of my best friends told me that you have to build your group and know that these people will have your back no matter what. That you could rob a 711 (do not advise this) show up on their doorstep and they would take you in without judgement. These are the friends who tell you to put the ICEE down, return to the store and help you make amends/ develop an action plan for next steps.

This example sounds silly, but it totally resonated with me. When you surround yourself with people who love you no matter what, who have your back and who want you to be the best version of yourself, you grow. This year, I’ve found my squad. They consist of career-driven women, fitness fanatics, foodies, world travelers, fashionistas, philanthropists, volunteers, adventurers, dancers, artists, health nuts, and everything in between.

These women bring so much to my life and have made it a life worth fighting for. We keep in touch via FaceTime, phone calls, texting, or if I’m lucky in-person. I cherish every second with my soulmates and I’m so thankful that the universe brought me my angels. Find people who celebrate you and never let them go.