Updated: Dec 30, 2021
This is 40.
Perception is a funny thing. Fickle, subjective, deceiving. One of my oldest and dearest friends and I were talking one day. She confessed that she wasn’t “killing it lately.” I chuckled and said “I don’t know anyone who is.” She said “You are.”
I am? I’m 40. I’m divorced. Living in sin. Childless. Disturbingly obsessed with animals. And yoga. I’m a workaholic and control freak. I am a domestic failure and chronic over scheduler. I am an obsessive worrier, people pleaser and nice to a fault because I’m a bleeding empath. Even when people are absolute shit to me, I have like this out of body experience where I am floating outside the situation and can see why they are a fuck head. I say nothing most times. I mean I have gotten better with my boundaries but she’d fucking cut a bitch, and I love that about her. She thinks I’m killing it?
I mean don’t get me wrong I have come a long way. Fought hard to get here. I appreciate that. My 30th birthday was a much different scene than this one, that is for sure. Perhaps we should visit that day.
On my 30th birthday I found myself wandering the Hoover dam alone. I was mortified after a little too loud of a tantrum was had on a tour bus… and it wasn’t my tantrum. And it was about things we don’t talk about, especially not out loud bus full of strangers. Now some of you probably were not raised in an Irish Catholic household but basically there are things you just don’t air in public and well apparently the other party in this scenario did not get that memo. I was absolutely mortified.
I remember that day was the first day I heard it. I was standing at the top of the Hoover dam and thought I could just roll down this mother fucker. Save myself the 2 hour ride with the bus full of strangers that have now entered my inner world. And not on my invitation. And not to mention I didn’t even want to come to the damn dam I wanted to do one thing that whole trip, go to the Grand Canyon… and that was vetoed.
But then, standing there…angry, alone and without any dogs to save me. It popped in my head, like a whisper. I heard it. “I am going to be happy.” My mantra. Where it came from, I have no idea. How it would I make it happen, not a clue. But I knew from that moment that was I was going to be happy.
Simply happy. Happy that doesn’t come from anything thing external. It comes from your belly… deep inside. I knew it to my core. Even though I had only experienced fleeting moments of it up to that point.
I’m sure it did not appear that I was going to make myself happy in those early years. I basically took my whole world turned up side down and shook. Up to that point I also wasn’t really a sharer of my … gulp even to say the word now… my feelings. So when I showed up with my basket of clothes, carpet shampooer and dogs on my best friends porch she was a little surprised.
I mean I did think then, that along the way, my life would turn out to be a little more conventional than it has but I guess it’s not… or not yet… but either way somewhere in there I stopped looking ahead for what was going to fix it. What would fill the hole in my chest and started filling it myself. Not on accident. Intentionally doing and living in a way that made me happy. For myself. Not for anyone else, well and my dogs.
Today is my 40th birthday. 10 years later looking back on being broke, homeless, getting divorced, buying my first house, working over time, mailmen, side jobs, house renovations, my dogs death, Quitting jobs, yoga teacher training, opening a studio, buying a building, pandemic, quitting a job that I thought I’d retire from, renovations, set backs and seeing it start to come together. Am I killing it… no. Most days I’m a hot mess. I swear I’m gonna shave soon. But I have made some improvements and found some things that are working for me.
These are the things that have worked for me;
Debt resolution: I like the debt snowball by Dave Ramsy. Do it. I mean even with the building putting be back in some debt. I have a plan and realistic way to knock this down again. And without hardly any personal debt when I started this project it’s realistic. Part of the reason I felt trapped in unhealthy relationships in the past was financial fear. Finding myself broke and alone and it was honestly the best gift I have ever received.
Movement: I’ll spare you my typical yoga monologue about why it works. But it does work. Balance is the key. When I put a consistent movement practice into my routine… shit got real. I’m 40 and I’m not in pain. Nor do I fear or accept that pain is my reality or future. And yes I knew it worked, as a teen even. But I needed my mailman’s kick in the ass to make it a consistent habit. Sometimes I look back over my shoulder in the midst of a pile of construction ruble and contractor garbage bags and his grumbling ass is standing behind me. He knows I need this… even when I forget.
Food: This has been my latest chapter. Food is medicine. It’s so powerful. And it’s connected so many missing pieces when I started to see my habit patterns that were working against me. Again requires that consistency. Not perfection. But acceptance of “that’s just how it is” just isn’t working for me.
Drink your MF water: When people say to me “I hate water.” I have this visceral reaction to how insane that is. Um it is important, I could bore you with reasons but just get over yourself and drink it. If you have ever seen in action when someone is having a melt down (I work in mental health field) I ALWAYS start at the basics. Have they had any water or food?
Work life balance: I say I work part time now but I really still work about 40 hours a week. To me that is part time compared to what I used to do. I have also come to appreciate supervision that appreciates me. I have had a ton of posts come up lately about being a good leader and I think the one that made me appreciate my current jobs is “being a good leader isn’t about being the best, being a good leader inspires others to be the their best.”
Community: My circle is small. Well not as small as I like to pretend it is these days. I do recognize that I am a valuable asset and I do not grant everyone access to my inner world. Unfortunately people can be cruel and selfish and down right mean. I refuse to let that stomp out my fire. I’m going to continue to share and grow with each of you. The little community that the studio has blossomed into leaves me humbled and grateful over and over. Inside of you is something that is a part of me too and there is other different stuff in there, in you… that I need to learn. So thank you. I am so grateful for you. And I am so excited for the this new decade.
This is 40. I’m not fucking killing it but i don’t know anyone that is.