To Those Who No Longer Recognize Me…

I’ve been through a number of physical, emotional, personal, and spiritual transformations lately. And yes, all at once.

It started slow, like a trickle. But then it hit hard, like a waterfall. I eventually had no choice but to simply throw myself over the falls and hope for the best. To give up the land I was standing on for the rapids below. And to allow myself to drown so that I could breathe again in my new nature with a newfound sense of my own power and a commitment to respecting it.

In the past whenever I’ve ever transformed, I feared people saying “I don’t even recognize you anymore.”

That simple phrase used to wreck me. I used to think I was disappointing them. I wondered who I was to get too far out of the norm they saw me in. I worked hard to fit in. I wanted to be accepted. To be liked. To be loved. To be admired. To prove to myself and others that I could get along with everyone. To prove to myself and others that I was special because I was universally loved.

I needed the external validation.

I don’t anymore.

I didn’t realize that was a way to try to control me. I didn’t realize that I don’t owe anyone anything, let alone making sure they’re “comfortable” with my presence. I didn’t realize how I would hide major parts of myself to simply become what other people wanted me to be. I didn’t realize I would even pride myself on being someone who would go along with whatever you wanted, losing myself and my own preferences in the process.

But now I do. So now I say this:

If you no longer recognize me, you never actually saw me.

It’s not entirely your fault. I was a master chameleon. I naturally built others up and made them believe I was their favorite person to be around because I made them feel interesting and funny. I needed to be around others in order to prove that I was worthy of companionship. I didn’t believe I was enough on my own, so I became very good at attracting others to me.

I was afraid of my own light. It was bright and powerful. Anytime I shined before, I was told by the world around me to be careful. I was told to tone it down. I was told it was too much. I was too much. In order to survive, I had to keep it under wraps. I didn’t have the power to protect myself from those who wished to dim it. So I dimmed it myself.

But I have the power now. I’ve discovered it during this transformative and incredibly difficult time on my own. I’ve listened to myself in the silence and trusted what I heard.

I am enough. My light is not something that needs to be covered or caveated or condensed. It is what it is. I am who I am.

I am more myself than I have ever been. The young me that thrived before the conventions started shackling her down has been slowly, and painstakingly freed from them. When I realize one still has a hold of me and that I have more growth to do to be liberated from an agenda or a narrative that is not my own, I am grateful that I recognize it. And I remember all the work I’ve done to get here and the power I have to overcome it. Then I give myself grace, space, and patience to work through it and let it go with the rest of the remnants of my past self that I unconsciously took on.

There are plenty in my close inner circle who still see me. In fact, because I shine more brightly now, they see me more clearly. But I know there are those who won’t and who don’t. And I have accepted that’s the way it is.

Too many people spend their lives so concerned with conforming to what others want or what they believe they “should” do, they lose their inner purpose in the process. They never remember their own light.

I won’t be one of them anymore.

As long as I like myself and I work on myself and I listen to myself, I’m okay with the outcome. I know there will be people who are attracted to that energy and others who are repelled by it. I also know that I am not on this planet to constantly listen to other people’s opinions of what I should be doing.

I have other things to do. Come along or move along.

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First run in a long time.

I did it. Back in the saddle. Thanks to this blog, I went for a run. I felt like I had to please all the readers.* And I went.

I ran for a whopping twenty minutes. Twenty. 20. It takes me longer to remember how to properly spell the word “twenty” than it did for me to run that long. Yet I was exhausted. I’m so out of running shape it’s not disgusting. Just a few months ago, I could run for two hours. It wasn’t really pleasant and I wouldn’t say it ever got easy, but I certainly could do it. Tonight I looked at my clock seven times in twenty minutes, begging for it to stop.

The worst part of running again after a hiatus is that you still in some weird way consider yourself a runner. But then when you actually run, your body goes through an identity crisis. The first few minutes it’s like “Oh yeah, I remember this! This feels great!” and then moments later, “Holy shit make it stop why are we doing this- I don’t remember how to do this?!?!?!”

Oy. This is going to be a lot harder than I thought.

*So far I have no readers. (wah waaaaaah)

We’re doing this.

Alright. Here’s the deal. I’m gonna start working out again to achieve the best body I can. Why? Because I’m vain and I work in an industry where looks matter.

I want to get strong, lean, and look like a badass. But not a body-builder woman, just a badass. Like, when you google “athletic hot chick,” I’m the first thing to come up. Which could be an SEO issue, but you get me.

I took my measurements this morning. Everything except my weight (arguably the most important weight-loss measurement, I realize). But won’t have a scale for a couple weeks so everybody just get over it.

I took pictures this morning. I’m gonna do that every day. You won’t see them until I’ve made progress. Why? See sentence three of the first paragraph. Vanity. I won’t let you see it until I’m satisfied.

What I will do, however, is post my workouts and personal reactions here. Along with some vlogs and other pics and whatnot. Everything will be honest and from the heart. And hopefully, on occasion, from the ass, too, because I’ve got plenty of that body part to spare at the moment.

I’m not trying to inspire people. Those blogs already exist. If you want to hear about people losing tons of weight and turning their lives around, go elsewhere. There are lots of those.

I am trying to entertain through pain. I workout a little bit right now. I have a pretty stable body and eat pretty well. All in all average. And now I want an above-average body and that’s gonna require a lot of work.

Join me as I complain about it every step of the way.