I sip a boxed mojito out of a trendy whiskey glass decorated with multicolored bicycles and write. I write what’s on my mind and disengage my filter. That stupid filter I use whenever I sit down to write. I keep postponing my writing because I’m scared it’s “not good enough” which is stupid because I’m writing for me. But really it’s almost harder that way because I’m my biggest critic. Aren’t we all, though? I’m usually judging everything I say, do and write. But recently I’ve been doing things to push myself out of my comfort zone and I must say, I kinda like it.
See I have this shitty shit shit commute of a drive to work – like over 2 hours each day. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s a shitty commute but it’s not super shitty because I’m sitting in traffic next to the Pacific ocean. But at the same time, one year into commuting like this, it’s hard to remind myself to look right or left and breathe in the gorgeous expansive sea of blue.
Back to pushing myself and not bitching…see, still working on it.
See I gave into this thing called Audible and it’s been amazing. I’m all the sudden addicted to self-help, boss babe, yoga books and I’m not even going to deny it because it’s that awesome. As I write this, basic is a word that comes to mind and as anyone reads this it probably comes to your mind too or now it definitely does because I just said it. I don’t think I’m basic. Well, part of me is. Like the part that loves expensive yoga pants, champagne filled brunches and my puppy. But I’m totally cool with that because there’s so much more of me that’s the exact opposite of basic.
Now these books aren’t saying shit I’ve never heard before. All of the tools, tactics and mantras they preach are things I’ve heard multiple times before. See my mom is a minister who appreciates all religions (6 ways to Sunday) and my dad is a hippy, so that basically covers all the bases. The difference with hearing it now is that I’m ready to hear it.
I’m ready to start trying to be mindful and present. I’m ready to accept that I’m awesome ‘as-is’. I’m ready to believe I am worthy of happiness and all that I have. I’m ready to accept that I’m not defined by my past. I’m ready to embrace the excitement of the future. I’m ready to tell my story and process things because that’s what I need to do.
I wasn’t ready for any of this before. I wasn’t ready when I was 5 and went to therapy and I wasn’t ready when I was 24 and went to therapy.
I think I was around 5 or 6 years old. My mom, an ambitious and determined pastor, and my dad, a selfless hippie home remodeler/landscape artist who was always willing to put his wife’s dreams before anything else, went through some really tough times when my sister (and BFF fo real), 5 years older than me, and I were young. I remember us being on food stamps and in government housing (there goes that filter). I remember moving around a crap ton and our parents thinking it best to put us in therapy. My sister and mom sat in the waiting room while some long tangly haired woman with a flowy skirt on, looking (and smelling) like she just came back from an Earth Day festival, asked me questions about my family in her office. This woman asked me, very softly and insightfully, “Kaitlyn, can you please draw a picture of your family?” Now, looking back I totally get it. She wants to see what my 6 year old brain thinks about power/dominance in the Bro-Benetz household. How big would she draw her dad in comparison to her mom? Where would her and her sister be in relationship to her parents on the paper? See, I get it. But being my 6 year old self, I calmly and I’m sure with a little sass replied, “Why do I have to draw them, just go look at them, they’re sitting in the waiting room.”
I think this story kinda paints a picture of my attitude towards self help thus far in my life. Alas, miraculously (or not so miraculously) my attitude has shifted. My perception is just a little, or lot, more optimistic. It might by my age. It might be lack of willingness to sit in silence with myself during my commute or maybe it’s as simple as just a deep burning/yearning in the center of my chest that’s asking for more. I don’t really care why it happened, I’m just happy that it has. I’m ready for this journey.
And yes. I’m crazy enough to publicize it to all my friends and family. I’ve spent too much of my life hiding behind fake smiles and selfies (don’t get me wrong, most smiles were legit but selfies, not so much) and I’m tired of it. I was told too many times that people (specifically a man) would never love me when they found out all the baggage I have. Well this is kind of my way of saying ‘fuck you’ to that person and that mentality.
Root to rise. It’s a yoga saying/posture. Feel the earth holding and supporting you under your feet. Breath in and sweep your hands over your head to the sky, scooping up all the amazingness that you are. Your chest is proud, your heart is beating strong and you’re standing tall. You are you and that’s amazing and from now on, no one can tell you otherwise. If you’re in to crazy stories, emotional journeys, lots of champagne and namaste’s, this is going to be a treat. 😉