Nature and Respite

The last two weeks, I have sat in front of the ocean at numerous times.  Many at night, and a few during the day.  I have realized how peaceful I am while at the ocean.  I wrote a poem about 2 weeks ago.  How the tide seems to ebb my pain away.  It is still there, and it will be there for quite some time.  The ocean is especially emblematic for how nature seems to center me.  It brings me back to a specific time and place of riding the waves to shore with my nana, or the boardwalk where we watched fireworks.

However, it doesn’t need to be that symbolic.  It can just be soothing.  I was at a park watching the river, and I felt something.  Nana had never been there with me, but the creek reflected her essence.  It had her shine, her bright smile.  And it made me smile because of it.  Things don’t have to be concrete to be real.  Given my background, I have some trouble with that statement.  If you believe it to be real, then it is.  The difference has to be how you reflect on that experience and make it real to the world.

It is there how you truly bring your memory into the world as a living, breathing thing to share with others.

On a completely different note.  This blog has been an amazing experience in so many different ways.  I get to share a personal part of myself (something I am NOT good at) with others I never would have met before, and you get to experience what I write as you want to.  I also get to share my passion for nature, gratitude, my business, and my family in a way I never would have thought possible.  This has been another life changing journey for me this year, and it’s JUST begun.  Thank you to all of you who have subscribed so far, I feel honored.  I hope you are enjoying this as much as I am.

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Decisions and Relief

I touched on this a few weeks ago.  I have a big personal goal that I am trying to achieve besides some personal events in my life.  Tonight I came to the decision that it’s done.  I will be an Area Manager in qualification by the end of THIS month.  I don’t know how, and honestly, it doesn’t matter.  The how comes with the why.  And then came the relief.  It’s like when I decided to paddle the Tohickon creek, I made a decision to do it.  And it was a glorious day.

Stolen from the internet.  I do not know the origin.  A woman is in harmony with her spirit is like a river flowing.

Stolen from the internet. Quote by Maya Angelou. A woman is in harmony with her spirit is like a river flowing.

It’s a phrase sometimes batted around, “The Power of Decision.”  I’ve heard it plenty of times, and almost been like, “that’s great for you (with no malice or sarcasm intended), but it won’t work like that for me.”  Until tonight.  I feel it down to my toes and racing through my heart like a wildfire cleaning out a lifetime worth of debris in my soul.  All the self-imposed pressure to get it done is gone.  Only calm and a sense of burning determination I can’t begin to describe.  This is what life is supposed to be like.  Strong, powerful, and fun.

Grief, Trust, and Belief

I am not a big trust person.  It takes a long time to earn it from me.  I have been working on steadily for the past two years.  Every once and while, though, I get this urge and almost necessity to speak with someone who I don’t know very well.  I did that tonight, and it was about something deeply personal for both of us.  I honestly didn’t know what would come of our conversation, which started about a family event this past week.  It was an open, genuine, deeply “real” conversation that was both terrifying and quite striking.  And it morphed from a conversation about grieving and that process to one of an oddly fulfilling personal awakening.  The cool part was it all stemmed from my friend Kayla’s firm belief that my Nana was immensely proud of me.

When you spend almost your entire adult life being closed off from the world, and to open yourself up little by little is a bit daunting.  It makes one vulnerable and exposed.

I have had people tell me, “you are such an inspiration.” And I would say, “thank you so much, and I am glad I was able to do that for you.”   In reality, I never understood why I was such an inspiration.  FYI, this is not me being modest, I honestly didn’t know.

Kayla, my friend and colleague, clued me in tonight on why I am so inspirational (her words).

I met her last year in Vegas, and she was brand new.  Apparently, I said no matter what it was, “Arbonne is amazing.”  To me Arbonne is not about the paycheck, which can be incredible.  It’s about the relationships, personal growth, and self-discovery along the way.  And that is why I am an inspirational being in Arbonne (this is what others have told me).  I have persevered much longer than other people may have, because despite some setbacks, I kept going.  Because I SAW the potential, I saw where I was going, and I saw what I could become.  I hadn’t seen that before really, EVER.  I didn’t believe in myself, and I relied on others belief in me until I gathered my own.  My personal definition of perseverance is doing something long after the excitement and what you said you were going to do has worn off.  I am a person of my word, and yes, this is a lot longer than I thought it would take.  It IS happening.  My Nana saw it in me the last time we spoke, and it has provided a fuel for me to get it done.  She was proud of me.  She saw greatness in me, and she believed it to be possible.

I didn’t know what this blog entry was going to be about.  I almost just free-wrote it, and this is what came out of my head.  It’s important part of this journey that I am on to trust myself.

Community and Vulnerability

I am loving life these days, and in every aspect.  I am brimming with gratitude, happiness, and determination, along with a sense of self that I have never had before.  Why?  Many reasons, but one of the biggest is the community I surround myself with.

Photograph taken by unknown paddler.  Features Looie Voorhees, Diane Z, Grace Jones, Ruth Krieger, and Alexis Krukovsky

Photograph taken by unknown paddler. Features Looie Voorhees, Diane Z, Grace Jones, Ruth Krieger, and Alexis Krukovsky

I have many different communities I am privileged to be apart of.  Some of the characteristics they all have in common are a huge sense of support, unity towards a common purpose, mentoring, and constructive feedback.  Everyone is a collection of experiences they have throughout their lifetime.  It is one’s job to sift through it, and find one’s place where you can feel at home and “safe” at.  Where you can be vulnerable without having to worry about what people are going to think.  I started small by venturing out where I feel safest, paddling.  Since the summer it has snowballed into other areas, and now I feel at peace with myself.  Free even.

I think one has to be vulnerable to be great, because you have to get out of your comfort zone to achieve greatness.  This involves opening yourself to others, something which has terrified me for most of my life.  We’ve been taught that vulnerable is a dirty word, and it means to be weak.  In my experience, it’s the combination of vulnerability and mental toughness that brings people to greatness.  I have experienced within the past month what I would consider a shift.  I am making myself more vulnerable, and trying to be more open with people in my communities.  And I think it’s one step of many in my path to a greater sense of self and purpose.

Accomplishment and “Me” Time

I love my life, and the past two days have been inexplicably exhausting and awesome at the same time.  When you accomplish something that originally felt far away and almost unattainable, the feeling is immeasurably awesome.  That is how I felt yesterday.  I got promoted in my business, and just a few days ago I had no idea how I was going to get it done.  I just Believed and Knew I would.

Ocean is magical in the winter.  Photograph taken by Alexis Krukovsky.  Photograph taken at Spring Lake, NJ.

Ocean is magical in the winter. Photograph taken by Alexis Krukovsky.

Something that I had been lacking before.  I said I would get a big goal done, but I wouldn’t actually believe it. Now, I believe it. What a freaking difference that makes.  Previously, I honestly wasn’t sure how much that mattered.  Guess what?  It does.

The flip side is what you need to get your goals done.  I’m talking relaxing “me” time.  Everyone should have goals, vision, and a plan to get it done.  People also however need some time for themselves.  I find, and everyone is different, if I don’t get “me” time, I lose focus.  I spent the night relaxing with one of my closest friends before the start of this crazy month where we both have big goals.  It was a much needed respite, and it restored some sanity to my brain.