Wednesday, October 7, 2015

What Helps Me Slow Down...

Ninety-percent of the time I feel like I have this work-life balance thing figured out. However there are time periods where everything is hectic, all feels like a blur, and life has me feeling like I'm in a literal whirlwind. Last week I felt like that. The school year has been well underway and with all of my new and exciting responsibilities, I found myself continually on the go with no break in sight. I had a moment over the weekend where I just turned into mush, laid on the ground and sobbed thinking about how overwhelmed I was. 

Once I had many deep breaths and a nurturing conversation with a colleague of mine, I picked myself up and decided to do something about my hectic schedule and talked to my boss to help me figure it out. Later I had a long cuddle sesh with my beloved Penelope and a loving conversation with my love. When the day was over I felt so grateful with all of the wonderful lessons of self care that I have learned throughout my life and the supportive people that I choose to have in my life who love me in the right ways. 

So I just wanted to share some of the things I do to help me slow down. I feel so fortunate for all of these.

*When I'm riding home on the train and thinking about my work day and need a little pick-me up, I scroll through pictures and videos on my phone of my cat Penelope. She's so tender and a wonderful love bug and looking at pictures of her puts a smile on my face and helps me feel less anxious.

*I take at least a 20min break at some point in my work day to read something completely un-work related. It's usually or one of my favorite blogs but just tuning out for a moment helps recharge for the rest of my day.

*I make it a priority to work out about five times a week. I'm obsessed with yoga, barre, and boxing at the moment and they all help me to relieve stress, remind me why self care is so important, and give me a jolt of positive energy. Yes thank you Pure Barre instructor for motivating me by excitedly saying "how good do you want your booty to look when you walk in that bathing suit?!" totally ridiculous, totally inspiring! ;p 

*Nurturing my creative side always helps me zone out and so zen. Whether it's painting, letter writing, piano, or knitting, creating is my sacred time.

*Going for a walk on Fridays has become a big part of my self care routine and helps me cleanse away the work week. Being around nature or discovering a new part of my city is just good for my heart...literally. 

*I take a lot of baths. I look forward to it, the bubbles, lighting candles, and reading is just so decompressing. I do some of my greatest thinking in the tub. :)


Tuesday, September 22, 2015

What I've Learned About Love For Sure and Him...

Today one of my students asked me for advice on how to get over his ex-girlfriend and by the end of our conversation he, with tears in his eyes said to me, "thank you for being like an older sister to me, whenever I have felt loss or needed advice your name comes to mind and I appreciate everything you have helped me go through." I of course got all weepy (yes I'm a sap) and responded with, "well I'm glad my many years of bad dating and life choices are serving someone!!" but really, I really am glad I am saving a whole village of teenagers from a lot of love angst (not exaggerating at all). 

Looking back at the relationships through the course of these last 12 years (my first bf was at 16) I am so thankful for all of the lessons that I have learned about what kind of love I want in my life. Even though some of those courtships ended in shambles and some where peaceful and gracious good-byes, I'm so thankful for all of those moments and memories because now finally I can see what this love thing is all about.

               We accept the love we think we deserve - The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Self Love. Mindy Kaling in an interview once stated that the most sage advice her late mother had ever given her was that you have to be your own best friend. If you remember that you will always have someone there with you. Even though I always felt like I had the I totally think I'm the thing down I realized that wasn't always the case. This past year has focused around nourishing every element of myself. Allowing myself to be me at all times and have the best relationship with myself. It has felt so soul fulfilling. I always feel like I am able to walk into a room and feel like, yes this is me, I love it! You do too? Awesome. Oh you don't, ha you're missing out! So now every person I've welcomed into my life this last year has only stayed because I have made the conscious decision that if they add on to all of the love I have going on already.

Be Selfish. Realizing that I deserve what I want out of a partner and not settling for anything less was so freeing. Many times I'd constantly accommodate for my partner's desires, needs, and became what my friends and I called "Mush Elvia." So yes it's okay to be selfish, it's okay to know what you need from a partner and not let go of those things. 

Easy. It should be easy, yes zero (or close to zero) complications or anxiety or stress. If something is meant to be it should feel and be easy. I adopted this mantra when I started dating again last winter and it made dating in NY so much fun! Yes dating in NY was fun! Going on dates and putting no pressure on a situation and seeing if it fit or not. If there was chemistry fab if not then I moved on. Easy peazy!

And this is what these last almost five months have felt like with Brian, easy. When we went on our first date, I only scheduled to spend two hours at this lovely wine bar in Williamsburg with him and our date ended up lasting over five hours. Everything about our courtship has felt so effortless. I have never felt so much ease, added joy, profound compassion and love from a partner. It has been so easy to just be my cat loving-taylor swift obsessed-teacher nerd-cuddle lover-etc self with him. This has felt like a wonderful partnership where we both are on the same plane emotionally, mentally, physically, and spiritually. Yes he's Catholic! Very exciting! And it has been so profound to be able to share our faith together, go to mass together, pray together, etc. I mean my faith has always been such an important element of my life but being with someone who is right there with me spiritually has been such a nice welcoming change. It also has been so wonderful the circle of love that we have surrounding us, sometimes I think my family and friends love him more than they love me (might be true, I need to do more re-con work!) 

The other day one of my close friends whom is Greek told me that her mom told her that we have "teriazete" Which means that just from seeing us together and how we are with one another we just fit and that this match will last. Well, even though I don't have a magic eight ball and can see into the future, I know that whatever journey our relationship will be, short or ever lasting, I am so thankful to have this love in my life and have held so closely to my heart our experiences together. Us coming together has    felt almost as if I'd been calling out in the night for a wild animal on the prowl. When this journey many times felt impossible and even silly, but then you hear the thunder of hooves, and some beautiful beast come rushing into the glade, searching for you just as urgently as you have been searching for it and it just felt like, oh there you are...I've been searching for you forever.

Friday, September 4, 2015

Oh How I Loved Portland...let me count the ways

All the hype about Portland, Oregon was true. I spent a week eating all the things, seeing all the things, and reveling in all of the things. I can now see why people are relocating there in droves. Oh how I loved Portland...let me count the ways:

Totally ready for this 6a.m. flight

My AirBnB was on Taylor St, coincidence...I think not #Serendipity

Salon day!

Moseying around downtown

Yay PDX! 

Met Joanne and we spent a few days biking around the city together

That cycle life tho

Played piano for some Portlandians

Met Liz and laughed hysterically allll night 

Discovered a speakeasy shhh...

The pups at the AirBnB

Portland has over 700 food trucks and they all tasted like heaven (or at least the ones I tried) 

Vintage shopping always makes me happy

I should wear my glasses less, I like this pic, oh wait I need to see

This dress has cats all over it and I'm all about it

Selena vibes

Purringtons Cat Cafe was lovely, she looks like Penelope!!!! 

Moseying around a farmer's market

Portland Art Museum 

When you travel alone and take a lot of silly selfies 

This installation just made me want to dance

I like sitting on floors

Portlandians will understand this stack of $2 bills

Played cards with some wonderful fellow Californians that I met on the Bike and Brew Cycle Tour

This guy used to live down the street from me, small world huh?

Spending time with my Mami's fav

This is what surrounds Portland

Erin and I going for a hike

Driving over The Bridge of the Gods, yo where is Cheryl Strayed?

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