Star Wars Half Marathon: The Light Side

So, it’s a few days after the Star Wars Half Marathon – the Light Side at Disneyland and I’m sitting here in my office during my lunch break sore. But, my spirits are high regarding the running aspect of my life. We’re back to training our student staff at work and I’m honestly so tired. My body feels like it has taken a beating and I’m using this week to heal and rest, but I think I also want to get out and run. Luckily, my job requires me to walk around a lot, so at least I have that!

But, I will say that this past weekend’s Star Wars Half was really great. I didn’t train much. I went to the gym twice and ran 3.1 miles each time. I want once outside for 3 miles. A lot of walking was added to the total miles and then it was race day before I knew it! But, with the Run The Year 2017 Challenge, in which I am trying to move 2,017 miles this year, has made things easier, as I’m super conscious if I’m running or at least walking a lot each day.

The race was mostly flat. Thankfully, since it’s January, the race started in the night. Even with a later corral start time, I was able to run through most of Disney’s California Adventure in the darkness, which was so great. I loved the lights and Paradise Pier is my favorite at night. The sounds and music of Star Wars past and present were playing on the loud speakers and Star Wars symbols and characters were all about, including on the California Screamin Loop background!

Like the Avengers Half, I did not stop for any photo opportunities. I enjoyed them while passing by and I engage in spectator high fives and stuff, but I don’t stop. I try to take these races seriously like any other race and try to improve my own personal time. I’m glad to say that I improved on my time for this race from my previous Run SF race time of 2:50 and my Avengers time of 2:53. I got 2:46 for this race! I’m on my way to improving to where I used to be, which was around 2:30.

I liked this course because it was mostly flat. I didn’t like the long straightaways though, but the large streets made for good crowds to cheer all the runners on and for driver’s to wave and beep at everyone running. Good motivation tool! Like the last time, I loved the RunDisney race! I think that Disney does a great job of managing the course, having well timed bathrooms (that I never use), well places water stops, and the ability to get energy gels when you most need it (and I’m sure they’d let you take more than one). The race finish was also great, although I’m sad they only gave me one banana instead of two like last time, except I should have asked (that’s okay, I was good). I thoroughly enjoyed the photos that they took of me! Made me look like a real runner!

So, where do we go from here? Well, I’ve signed up for the Star Wars Half Marathon – The Dark Side Challenge at Walt Disney World in April (includes a 10k and Half Marathon). I also have the LA Run to Remember Half Marathon in February, the LA Marathon in March, the Livermore Half Marathon in March, and the Disneyland Double Dare Challenge (10k and Half Marathon) in September. Lots of races. That’s 1 marathon, 5 half marathons, and 2 10ks, for a total of 8 races! That’s a lot, but I anticipate a few more. This is the year. 2017 is the year of running. Running for health. Running for fun. And, running for my life!


Starting Over For 2017

I have not written since December of 2015, and so I think it’s pretty telling to say out loud that 2016 was a year of both excitement and new adventures, as much as it was sadness, loss, grief, exhaustion, and other horrible things. I moved across the country to take a new job in San Jose and returned to my home state, I found love and then ended the same relationship, ran many more half marathons than I ever thought I would and could, and spent a year making memories at Disneyland with friends and my sister. Donald Trump was elected President of the United Stated, many innocent lives were taken at the Pulse Nightclub Massacre, a woman was the nominee for President and won the popular vote, I discovered the beauty of nature, I fell in love with the city of Portland, OR, so many lives were taken because of the color of their skin or their race. So much hate mixed in the good things that happened. But, rather than just recapping what happened, I want to share a couple of doable, yet challenging, resolutions I have for myself for this new year!

  1. Challenge myself to become fit. I have signed up for a couple of half marathons in 2017. The first one coming up in two weeks is the Star Wars Light Side Half Marathon at Disneyland. I’m excited, but nervous as I haven’t run due to being busy or it being cold (and I’ve been lazy). I need to step it up! The next is last of 3 in my Golden State Series challenge, the Livermore Half Marathon in March. I can’t wait to get my unique wine related medal and get my beautiful Golden State Series medal! I also signed up for the Disneyland Half Marathon in September! The last is a virtual marathon, which is the Run the Year 2017 challenge, in which I will try to run/walk/jog/hike/move with my feet 2,017 miles over the course of 2017! I can’t promise to run everyday, but I will try to keep up my walking everyday to at least get me into a doable range of miles on average. I hope to eat better and just exercise more!
  2. Get back into taking pictures! I don’t mean on my iPhone, which I already do, but I own a nice DSLR camera that I often don’t use and just hide away. I need to get out and use it more!
  3. Read more books. I got a new Kindle towards the end of the year and I need to read more! Harry Potter is already on deck and I decided to buy less paper books and do my E-Book reading (and to read the paper books I do own already). This means I need to make time for it.
  4. Be more mindful and love myself more. Mindfulness can mean sitting to meditate, slowing down, thinking about one thing and focusing or thinking about nothing. I just need to press pause once in awhile and do that more. I find myself sitting in worry-mode for no reason for things I can’t change. Practicing mindfulness could be something that could help me for a long time from now. The other part about loving myself more is that often times, because I care for others too much, as I did in my relationship, was that I loved the other person more than I cared about how I was doing. If I ever catch myself doing that, I need to stop and end things or stop doing that immediately. I need to see myself as first and then I can begin to even care for others.
  5. Downsizing and getting rid of things I don’t need anymore. This doesn’t mean purge everything, it means getting less in places I don’t need things, getting rid of old, outdated, and useless things I have. Cleaning is good for the soul and I already know I have tons of clothes to go through that I haven’t unpacked since I moved here in April 2016. This getting rid of stuff allows me to get new things or to think about what I actually need. Things sometimes need replacing. Speaking of which, I want to have more of a continuous style than random clothing items, so maybe getting rid of some old clothing might be useful for that piece.

So there you have it, my doable yet challenging resolutions. Everything I listed is doable, but will take effort to start and continue through the year! I see this as a start over. Some of these goals I had last year, but also, some of these things I started and then stopped doing. I need to just restart.

Joy Jar 2014 & 2015

It’s been a long time since I’ve written in my blog. I decided raid my closet and open up a box of stuff. In there, I found my Joy Jar that has been left untouched for awhile now. It includes a lot of things from 2014 and some things from 2015. The end of 2014 was rough, so it’s why I think I forgot to open the jar up. It sat on my shelf into 2015 and then things continued to not be so good, but I can reassure anyone who reads this that things have gotten a lot better. It’s so interesting though. I opened up each post it note stuffed into the mason jar and read so many good memories, not necessarily attached to people who are in my life still. Good riddance to the people that have exited my life for whatever reason. All I know is I’m much better without these people, but it doesn’t discount the fact that those memories were captured in what was a good time. Good memories still exist, so that is what matters now. So here’s a list of the memories with no specific order:

  1. Yaa Acheampong. Allison Potter.
  2. Panera
  3. Seeing friends & family, after almost 2 years, in LA
  4. Panera & Max Brenner fondue. Food babes with Luis.
  5. Commencement at Northeastern University and earning my Masters
  6. Finding out Luis is a step closer to staying in the U.S.
  7. Birthday dinner with Yaa, Mercedes, and JJ at Texas Roadhouse
  8. Impulsive HDTV & Blu-Ray player purchase
  9. Purchasing a 3 day pass to Boston Calling
  10. Earning the Founder’s Award & Emerging Professional Award from the CSCD Banquet
  11. (I guess this was important because here it is again!) Awarded the Emerging New Professional Award & Funders Award for the CSDC & CSDA Awards!
  12. 21st Amendment & Divergent w/ Luis
  13. Seeing my first Social Justice workshop come to life at Brandeis
  14. Drinks w/ GSG friends – “Let’s go drinking.”
  15. LGBT Film Festival with Luis
  16. Running 3 diversity sessions for Tufts students
  17. Meeting Luis Sandoval
  18. Luis bringing me birthday cake M&Ms!
  19. Bad dinner with Luis but really good desert at Finale + Lego movie
  20. Seeing Jane get married!
  21. TPE14 and NASPA14 in Baltimore
  22. Dinner catch up w/ Luis! (after Baltimore)
  23. Successful NASPA #SASocial
  24. Dinner with Luis @ Union
  25. Alec arriving in Boston after JetBlue craziness & Tasty Burgers
  26. LeaderShape Boston Session 2014
  27. Karaoke for Yaa’s Birthday!
  28. Listening to the Nor’easters kill it!
  29. RD Retreat at Jay Peak
  30. Reading the book the Heart of the Volunteer
  31. Bearing my soul & having a real moment with Luis
  32. Doctor Who
  33. Six Flags Great Escape for RA Training plus the Sky Coaster with Sean and Kyrena
  34. “Horse…whores…” & “Sheet…shit…”
  35. Feeling love by friends at my grad dinner @ Maggiano’s
  36. Luis’s “Karma” moments to me at Eastern Standard
  37. Getting a job offer at UVM
  38. Realizing Luis listens to everything I say…because he got me the perfect grad gift! (Stronger book and bow ties!)
  39. Driving to CT with Luis to see Imagine Dragons and then driving back to Boston for Victoria’s Diner!
  40. Campero Chicken
  41. The realization that not everyone is fit to be considered my friend!
  42. My first opera show, Florencia en el Amazonas, with Luis plus Tasty Burger
  43. Disneyland & Disney California Adventure
  44. Spending all day with Luis in Harvard Square & browsing books and seeing Spring Awakening then Cheesecake Factory
  45. Earning my Masters in College Student Development & Counseling + my grad dinner
  46. Wrestle/Cuddle naps + Game of Thrones w/ Luis
  47. Finally telling Luis that I like him ❤ (that backfired, oops, #sorrynotsorry)
  48. Fun TPE14 Roommates
  49. All day with Luis & Mount Auburn “photoshoot”
  50. Visiting Luis & seeing his NEW apartment
  51. Luis saying he misses me!
  52. Switchfoot Fading West concert with Yaa & Luis
  53. Assembly Row AMC movie theater opening with Luis
  54. Boston Calling w/ Luis

Things I didn’t write down (for 2014 and 2015)

  1. Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure (2 times)
  2. Meeting Bert
  3. Ocean Kayaking in La Jolla
  4. Brett & Chester (cat, who I then adopted)
  5. Skydiving
  6. Skydiving w/ Kyrena
  7. Amaluna
  8. Sam Smith concert with Erin Baker
  9. Disneyworld (all 4 parks)
  10. University Studios Orlando & Islands of Adventure
  11. Running my second half marathon

That’s all folks! I know I had some really awesome moments but that’s what I can remember now and that’s what was written! Here’s to 2016 to more memories and new adventures!

One Year Later (in Vermont)

I can’t believe how fast a year goes by. I’m officially one year and a month into living in Vermont. Right off, I will say it’s been an emotional journey and sometimes I love it here, and other times I find myself wondering how the hell I got myself here. But, I think everyday has been a true blessing (sometimes, those blessings are disguised behind costumes and masks).

When I left California 5 years ago (wow, typing that I saying out loud is mind blowing to me), I thought I would be back in a year. That definitely has not happened. Boston became home to me and I decided to take full advantage of East Coast living by living in different parts of city and even decided to enroll in graduate school. All of these choices were very unplanned, but with everyday that passed, I was more and more convinced that where I was at the time was exactly where I needed to be.

That moment happened when I got the call, from my soon to be supervisor, that I received a job in Vermont. I was so ecstatic that I even decided to stop my job search process/interview trips and accepted the job quicker than I even imagined. I spent the next couple of months trying to enjoy the company of my closest friends (I even spent so much time with one friend I thought was leading to be my first “partner” or “boyfriend” or “significant other” or whatever you want to call it). When I made the big move, things definitely shifted and changed like no other and I was quickly finding out that my new home would take more and more of my time (not a bad thing at all).

I still remember, July 1st, 2015, I moved out of the MIT Phi Delta Theta house and carried all my stuff and packed up my moving truck with three of my friends. Just a few nights before, I cried so hard because it was the first time I was leaving people behind that I felt I didn’t want to leave. But, after a couple of weeks and months, everything started to get better. I created new friendships/relationships (and, unfortunately, I lost some friends and lost a parent). You can’t plan for what will happen, but you can grow, change, and adapt and become more resilient.

Most recently, I have been stating how much I miss California. I made a recent vacation visit and spent some time at my favorite places (not really to even visit people). I think what I’m learning is that people come and go, but it’s physical places and experiences that make me miss places. I will say it now, there’s not many people left in Boston that I truly care for (however, some of my best friends still live in Boston). What I miss about Boston is the beauty of the city, the convenience of the MBTA and the access to shopping, food, and historical sights. It’s so easy to find a small or large concert and there are endless opportunities for free movie screenings.

When it comes to California, I miss the mild weather, the sunny skies, and the laid back culture (for the most part). I miss the diversity of food and everyday diversity of people. I miss being able to go to the ocean/beach, get lost in the city, and access to the mountains (let’s be honest though, I never took advantage of those things while living there).

Now, I’m in Vermont. I love my job and the people are great. I have created some strong relationships I wouldn’t trade for the world. However, it’s tough being here at times. The work is hard. I think about things I never have thought about at all waking hours of the day. Winters can be harsh. I have to drive hours upon hours to get to a major city/urban area. There’s not that much to do in Burlington, VT and we are considered a big city in Vermont. It’s not very diverse. The dating sceen is non-existent. It’s hard, but it’s fulfilling at the same time.

The other day, we were at a training retreat learning about Restorative Practices. At this point, it was my 3rd time reviewing the concepts in a formalized way. I feel like I have grown so much in this year and truly have become a better person, even if I feel like I take 3 steps forward and 10 steps back (at times). I truly feel I work at the best place. I feel this way because I interviewed for a job towards the end of the school year (and wasn’t offered the job, but it was close because I interviewed on campus), and I had many jobs lined up to apply for, but I chose not to, and I think about how it would help or hurt me to leave where I am now. I also think about that I could have ended up at a lot of different places for my first job, but UVM got me! For now, I feel very content and happy with staying at the University of Vermont, but it scares me everyday where I’ll be next (in a year, two years, three, etc). That is a reality!

So, here’s to my first year down living in Vermont and here’s to a successful second year!

Am I a Masochist? Maybe, Yes.

Masochist. That’s one way I can define the way I am sometimes and the hurt I inflict upon my bleeding heart. I walk in this world wearing my heart on my sleeve, which is either intense vulnerability or just plain masochism.

Some friendships (and more than just friendships) have been lost due to my self-inflicted masochistic ways. Intense satisfaction in knowing that I am the one who is hurt, just so I can have the intense story to tell afterwards. I’ve given up too much of my time, money, and tears to unfruitful friendships/relationships. What is wrong with me? Is something wrong with me?

I think deep about this a lot, but then I realize, is this always a bad thing? I hurt myself often because I care too often and have emotions. I’ve encountered many people in my 27.5 years of life, a lot of them are not so in touch with their feelings and emotions. Many people I have encountered put up walls and aren’t authentic. I know, it does hurt intensely when I’m let down and a friendship/relationship ends, but it’s worth it because I grow a little stronger, learn a little more about myself, and I’m able to feel. I’m able to feel joy and happiness when I need to and not take the bullshit that gets thrown my way.

I recently watched Inside Out (Disney movie that everyone should watch). I immediately started to reflect on it while I was watching it (and during the second time I was watching it). I started to think about how I wasn’t allowed to feel pain or cry when I was younger. Now, I’m not like that. I put myself out there and allow myself to get hurt because that’s when I learn the most. I cry when I want to, I laugh when I feel like it, and I just experience everything as it comes. I’ve dealt with a lot of things these past few years, so I think my resilience armor has been built strong so that I’m not ignoring or numbing emotions anymore, but I’m able to work through them (sometimes successfully, sometimes not so much, but that’s okay). So, in the movie, the character of Joy continues to push Sadness aside in hopes that Sadness will not interrupt any “core memories” within their human, Riley. In turn, this causes emotional chaos with Riley’s emotions and things go haywire for a little. It isn’t until Joy realizes Sadness needs to take over the main controls that new memories, good and joyful memories, can be made. In training in my job, we recently discussed vulnerability in-depth.

With this, I’m learning that my character, motivations, drive, and aspirations are directed by my emotional states and my want to be happy, whatever that means. So, when I say I’m a masochist, I often think about the times I feel very hurt (that stabbing pain in the heart or gut). But, I often think about how with that hurt and pain (and sadness), comes the moments when I meet new people and do new things while learning and growing.

So, I wear my heart on my sleeves and I try to present as much of my authentic self, in hopes that people will be okay with that. So far, I think most people are okay with that, and those that aren’t, have walked away from me. That’s okay. That’s part of the process and a simple part of life. Not everyone is meant to be in my life or to stay in it long-term.

So the big question: Why do I take pleasure in the pain that I often feel? Answer: I know that if I can take pleasure in this pain I feel, I can flip that around to feel the intense pleasure that it feels when things are going right, when friendships are made, when good times are had.

A few months back, I had an epiphany on life. I thought about and reflected on the fact that there are not many moments we feel alive. For me, intense pain is one of those moments I feel so alive (and when I go sky diving). I allow myself to sit in the feelings and emotions and to figure out how I’m going to get out of these feelings to return to the happy and joyful feelings I usually embody.

So, I guess I’m a masochist. I take intense pleasure in the pain that life deals out to me. But, I do it in hopes to build resilience and build myself up so that I can enjoy fully those moments that take your (my) breath away.

**Note to Reader: So, this came out of me fining out something I didn’t mean to go looking for, but found anyway. Translation: I found out who the guy I thought I was “more than friends with” but was “just friends” with in the end is dating, which is why we immediately stopped talking to each other the moment I found out. Moral of the story: don’t waste your time on those who won’t waste their time on you. But, feel freely and be open to getting hurt. Be vulnerable. It’s the way we learn and grow. I wouldn’t trade my experiences of heartache and angst for anything else. Sorry I’m not sorry for my rambling story above that may not make sense to anyone but myself.

My Summer Wrap Up

So, even though I finished Residence Director training last week, I feel like summer is now officially ending and training is officially kicking off this next week. It’s going to be a busy month ahead, so I figured it would be kind of cool to stop and think about the summer so far. In my last blog post (that I wrote, not reblogged), I discussed the new-found freedom I had because I decided to buy a car. Well, it has taken me to new heights and has allowed for an awesome summer!

This summer, I was able to go hiking several times and find some cool spots in Burlington to explore. I hiked Mount Philo, ran around the wooded Red Rocks Park, and took a small group hiking to Mount Mansfield. Hiking up and down Mount Mansfield was so much fun and really allowed me a breath of fresh air on the highest peak in Vermont. It was beyond beautiful and I got to spend time with some of the grads and my Office Manager.

My car has allowed me to take road trips to Six Flags New England, to fly out of Boston for my vacation to California, and to inevitably take a road trip to Baltimore and D.C. (in a marathon road trip). My trip a couple of weeks ago to California was beyond amazing and I got to a variety of things! First off, it made me miss California a lot. Visiting for a true vacation (and minimizing drama on the trip) was exactly what I needed. There was only one evening of drama, but I will let that go into the wind because it’s useless to discuss here on out because this person (I’m assuming) no longer considers me as a friend (BYE, FELICIA). Another case of not needing certain people in my life who bring me down or who bad talk me or think I’m not a good friend. Good, because you just proved why I don’t need you any more! Anyway, I got to go to In-N-Out, Ikea, watch Disney’s Inside Out twice, which was an amazing movie, spend one day at Disneyland and two days at Disney California Adventure, attend an LA Galaxy soccer game and see Robbie Rogers make a goal and also be at a big winning game while also getting a chance to hear Robbie speak and meet him and his mother, ride many awesome new roller coasters and rides at Six Flags Magic Mountain, visit and eat lunch at Stone Brewery, see my friend Johannes and go ocean kayaking in La Jolla (and also going in and around caverns/caves, eat twice at California Pizza Kitchen, and meet an awesome guy at Disney and actually feel like I met someone I can be friends with and want to truly develop that friendship more and more everyday (he’s probably going to one day read this…ahh…just kidding)!

What I can say is that I really miss California. I think I have spent a good 5 years on the east coast and I’m starting a 6th, which proves I do love it here, but I think I’m slowly convincing myself that my career needs to take me back to the west coast and back to Southern California at some point. It was amazing to go to Disneyland Resort for the 60th Anniversary Celebration, which Disney has dubbed as the Diamond Celebration. New shows and nighttime spectaculars, a new color scheme, and lots of cool souvenirs, including collectible 60th pins, where all around! I’m 100% glad that the drama I experienced at Disneyland was on Night 1 and that I don’t care for drama (because it’s for your mama, just kidding). I was spared drama for the rest of my trip when this (apparent) ex-friend decided to not stay with us any longer, and boy was that a relief because honestly, I need people to communicate and also be straight forward and honest (and not try to please people by not communicating needs early on). I got to spend another half day at Disney California Adventure with zero drama and my third day was spent in parts with this new friend of mine (which was really like 3 mini-Disney-dates). This person works at Disney and we got to just spend time talking about life and Disney as a company. If you know me, you know I have been a fan of Disney and the company for as long as I can remember loving Disneyland and Disney movies. So, dreams come true, I guess! I met the guy who works in the area of Disney that is probably the most interesting to me and I got to hear about some fun facts and about his dreams and goals, which hey, is a win-win for everyone! I honestly didn’t expect this at all when visiting California and Disneyland Resort, so you can say it was the topping on the cake and the cherry on top to an already awesome week spent in California with my sister.

My trip to California was just excellent and I returned to Burlington, VT with a new sense of energy to start this new academic year in my Residence Director position. I also have a lot to look forward to, such as people visiting me and also me taking more time to take vacation in the near and distant future!

When I got back to Vermont, I got to meet one of my newest co-workers and new RDs, Marquita. I helped her move in and I am serving as her compass, which is basically like a guide/mentor for the next year as the new staff member transitions in! Then, I drove to Boston for a night to see Imagine Dragons with Jenn (of whom, just got a job as an RD at Simmons in Boston), so it was kind of cool to celebrate with her with good music! So, we went and of course, Imagine Dragons always knocks it out of the park! They performed at the TD Garden, and of course, the place was packed! They played their new hits and a lot of their old hits. I was just perfection! Imagine Dragons are just so humble and they speak to you when they perform! I love when they bring out the drums and  you’re just jumping around and dancing to the beat. The energy they create in any concert venue is so unique, I can’t even describe what a good feeling. You just feel it in your heart, mind, and soul! I can’t even describe it!

A couple of days later, my co-worker, Marquita, needed someone to drive with her to get half of her belongings. What started as a short trip to Yale turned into a full road trip to Baltimore and D.C. We drove about 10-11 hours down and 10-11 hours back up in 2 days. It was nothing short of an adventure, but I got to meet important people in Marquita’s life, which was so wonderful and I wouldn’t have traded my time and energy for anything else in the world! Marquita and I got to develop our relationship so much in such a short amount of time, which was so cool!

When I got back, I slept a couple of hours, then I drove back to Boston for a concert with Yaa. This time, it was a concert with Eric Hutchinson, Pentatonix, and Kelly Clarkson! Yes, the ultimate lineup! First off, I don’t like amphitheater concerts because people except you to sit down, when concerts, you should be standing up! If you don’t stand up, you’re not going to be dancing and rocking out, so boo to everyone. But, Yaa and I committed to standing the entire time (people were mad, but f*ck you, for real, I paid real money to be here, let me stand and see and enjoy the music and sights…other people stood as well, so HAH). Eric Hutchinson was pretty cool and fun! Pentatonix was really awesome and I loved seeing them live. I love that we were watching an a capella group sing live and on tour. Cool. Then, Kelly Clarkson. Beyond amazing! On this tour, she is doing a fan request song, and it was cool that for the Mansfield, MA stop, it was requested she do “Radioactive” by Imagine Dragons. YES! I loved it. LOVE LOVE LOVE! Kelly Clarkson is golden and she’s so humble about the privilege she has to be where she is and to perform for people. She’s down to Earth and I love it! She also allowed her backup singers to do an entire number on their own, “Bang, Bang,” and they rocked the house! All in all, very great evening with good music and great company (Yaa)!

This past week was our first week of training, and since I had to drive back from the concert and arrived at 5:30am on the day of training, I started very tired. First day, I was fine, but the second day was a little harder. It was a tough week for sure, filled with training, emotions, and getting to know new people, but it was great! As RDs and Area Coordinators (AC), we got to go to Smuggler’s Notch for a retreat. It was a lot of fun to just get to know people more and to also get some hot tub time and pool time. I could not ask for a better way to relax together with some of the staff.

So, today, we all met together for the first time as a full Residential Education Team (RET). We are large and there are a lot of new faces. If you know me, I am super extraverted, but there are times when it just overwhelms me and I actually don’t go to everyone to introduce myself. It’s just not me in that way! So, I hope to meet some of the new people more as we progress through training!

So, that basically wraps up my summer! It’s been a truly great summer filled with lots of traveling, lots of concerts, and lots of great memories all around!

To see photos of my summer, you’ll want to browse my Instagram at:

Here Is How You Love Without Expectation

Wow! I almost cried while reading this one!

Thought Catalog

Merve illeuxMerve illeux

Here is how you love without expectation:

You love yourself first. Not necessarily most or best, but first. You don’t cancel plans that you were excited about because somebody else wanted your time. You don’t rearrange your schedule to accommodate a person who may bail at the last moment anyway. You are strict with yourself – even when you want to give in to the impulses of others –because you know that what you want and what you need is not always the same thing.

You need someone you can rely on and that person has to be you. At the end of the day, if everyone else bails and flakes and fails to show, you will still be there. So don’t look at yourself as a sad consolation prize. Put in the work. Become someone you’re proud of. If you’re who you’re left with at the end…

View original post 648 more words