Growing Pains.

Which do you want? The pain of staying where you are, or the pain of growth?

– Judith Hanson Lasater

Growing up is really hard. I remember when I was in my early teens and wanted so badly to be an adult. I couldn’t wait for the day I turned eighteen.

I lived such a sheltered life. I was the friend during senior year of high school that had to be home by 9 p.m., even on a Friday night. If you think that’s bad, I wasn’t even allowed to watch television during the week. I could only watch it on the weekends if my homework was done. The life of a kid raised by an award-winning teacher.

I just wanted to break free. I got so tired of my life being so safe and by design, I needed to do something that would shake things up and bring some color into my black and white world. When the chance came to spread my wings and fly away to my dream city to study Mass Communications for my undergrad, I got cold feet and stayed home.

The worst part about it? I didn’t chicken out because of what others were saying college life and being away from home would be like, I thought of every single negative “what if” situation that made it easy to put it all in reverse and back out of the plan of moving to Boston before I committed to anything serious.

 

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On the surface, I made it seem like my decision to stay home for college was made because I was happy at home and content with the city that I was in. When people asked, that answered sufficed.

On the inside, internal rage and suffering were battling it out to see who could make my day worse by reminding me of the choices I didn’t make towards being an adult and more importantly, being happy.

The thing about my life that I’ve found disappointing is that with all that I’ve done within it, everything seems so tame. I’ve traveled a lot and I go on adventures that make it seem that I’m living my best life, but all those adventures are fleeting in the grand scheme of what I’ve given to myself as an adult.

Have I ever lived on my own? No.

Have I ever tried to settle down with someone? No.

Have I ever committed to something as an adult? Kind of. I bought a car on my own! That counts!

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The truth is, I’m scared. I’m scared to put myself in a situation where I’ve tried my hardest, and I fail.

I keep on thinking about all that I feel like I’m ready to do in life and all that I can do in it – it’s all so exciting. Then, the dark smog of fear slowly permeates the sweet air of my dreams, and all that I believe that I can do with my life is masked by an unnerving haze.

Every “I can” becomes “I could have”, and we move on to the next big plan that I set out for myself, only to let my fear get to me, and I back out before I even allow myself to see if I succeed or fail.

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I am so sick and tired of my overthinking. I’ve told myself that my fears were right for so long. It’s beyond an acceptable point and I’m just done with it all.

I can’t keep chickening out on taking adult risks. I told one of my best friends earlier this year that this is the year that I won’t be a little bitch. I think with the strides I’ve made this year, I’ve been keeping to that statement.

It’s time to keep that going.

For the past year and a half, I’ve been trying to move to Boston. There have been two significant times that I’ve told myself and others that I would commit to moving to my future city.

I’m still in Florida.

With both of these times, I’ve learned valuable lessons. I do plan on keeping to the statement that I told my best friend early this year, but not being a little bitch doesn’t mean I should act like a dumb bitch either.

I don’t want to jump on something I have to commit to and have to run home because I did it wrong.Commitment takes thought. Growing up takes learning. Both of these things take time and planning.

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I will continue to make this year about getting what I want. I want to move to Boston.

I’m going to suck it up and do the best I can to make the adult decisions I need to make to get there. This is the most ready I’ve felt for making this move and the moment I get there, that will be the moment I’ve reached the beginning of my adult life.

I need to stop hiding in corners for safety and giving myself an average life. I want to live freely, I want to truly feel like an adult, I want my own place so I can walk around with no pants on because it’s my damn apartment and I’ll do what I want.

I’m at that point where I was when I was a teenager. I want to be an adult. The difference this time around is that I’m open to learning about what it takes to make adult decisions and to pull the trigger at the most opportune moment.

It’s obviously not going to be easy. I see friends and family go through adult trials and tribulations and it’s nerve-wracking to witness, but the good they go through is really good. Most importantly, they have freedom.

It’s time to give myself my own freedom.

 

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photos taken by the lovely Taylor McGhee and Carolina Londoño. Ladies, support your lady friends.
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You’re Just Too Comfortable In Chains

Here’s a sad story: I’ve always had a penchant for tender-footing around valuable decisions that move me towards living my best life.

I’ll see what I want in front of me, but with my deranged methodology of being a little punk, I’ll find someway to chicken out of doing what I need to get what I want.

It’s really annoying.

When I was younger, I held a very flippant attitude about my inner “punk ass”. I thought it was okay to divert my life’s course away from what I wanted for myself for the sake of sensibility.

  • I got an acceptance letter from Boston University for undergrad. This city has always been my favorite city. Did I go? No, I went to a local community college.
  • I always wanted to get a pixie cut, even in my teens. When I finally felt brave enough at sixteen to get a pixie cut, my hairdresser said that a cut like that would be too unconventional, too bold for someone my age. I just let her give me a trim.
  • I did whatever I could to hang with the cool kids in grade school. I never thought it was stupid to adjust my personality so I could be considered “cool”. I sat with the popular kids, even though my real friends were seated at other tables.

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In my mind, doing what was conventional was what should have kept me happy. Even though my heart cried out for the opposite of what I was giving it, I still kept on living on the terms of what was orthodox.

I was giving myself the most passive life.

Being a boring teenager evolved into becoming a droll adult. In my early 20’s I still felt as if I was incredibly commonplace and so far from the utopian model of a young woman happy with who she is, and what she was doing with her life.

I just think too much, this overthinking has always made me uptight.

When I was alone or with my family and closest friends, I felt loose enough to try and let myself be me. 

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Even around my family and closest friends, it was very tough to relax and be comfortable with letting all the elements of my personality shine. It made me very passive-aggressive, and it only grew worse the more I distanced myself from my portrait of happiness to connect myself with everyone else’s.

I’ll blame it on my youth for living that imprudently for so long. Wisdom and experience over time has taught me that what makes everyone else happy may not be for you.

Over the past couple of years, I’ve made strides that I consider tremendous towards my own nirvana. I’ve learned that the first vital step to take towards bliss is to stop caring so much about others and their thoughts.

Why should it be important what people who don’t play a considerate role in my life think about my choices and what makes me happy? So what if I cut my hair and it’s not conventional? So what if I decide to move 1200 miles away to a city that makes my soul burst with pure enchantment?

Why should I care about anything that doesn’t make me happy?

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No one should ever have to feel that they should skirt around their happiness because embracing it wholeheartedly would be discordant to what is conventional.

I’ve realized that putting myself in a mold that I don’t belong in is no fun and it’s not easy on the heart. I’ve grown from looking at life from the comfort of a safe ground, to stepping out of my comfort zone and taking the time to learn how I can live each day being a better me and learning to be confident in who that woman is.

It doesn’t matter who the rest of the world says you should be. If you’re singing a different song than the rest of the choir, as long as it makes you happy – keep singing.

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Goals Are The Mortals Bred From The Gods Of Dreams

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Earlier this week I visited my old Broadcast Journalism professor to mentor his class. While I was helping one of his students with recording a story, they asked me:

“So what’s your dream?”

My response? I don’t have dreams. I have goals that I spend every day working hard to achieve.

Continue reading Goals Are The Mortals Bred From The Gods Of Dreams