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True stories about what happens when a girl from the big city moves to a rock in the pacific without a life raft

Archive for the ‘Finding meaning’ Category

Self torture continued, my road to running in a half marathon

Posted by Jenni C. on May 1, 2013

inspration

I despise running so I signed up to run a half marathon. I know what your thinking, yes I am a walking oxymoron. Me and running have a hate-hate relationship. There is no room for love in that equation, and I seriously doubt that running has any love for me, so the mutual hate between myself and running is the perfect complement to this relationship.

So why run 13.1 miles for no good reason if you hate running so much?

Ahhh, good question. Why run 13.1 miles. To be honest some days 13. 1 miles seems like an incredibly far distance to drive, let alone run. Why run then? I wish I had one of those overly inspirational stories for you, like an example of how my life will forever be changed, or that I am running to raise money for a good cause, or I almost died and this is my chance to prove that I am alive and better than ever. Well, lucky for me I have not had a near death experience, my life will most likely be exactly the same the first minute after I reach the finish line, and I probably could be raising money for a really good cause, but I’m not. Maybe I should look into that one.

In reality, I am running just to say that I can complete a 13 mile run, and to win this competition that I am having solely with myself to prove that I can finish a half marathon in 2 hours or, at least 2 hours and 5 minutes.

I have never run 13 miles before. I don’t know if I will ever run it again. All I know is that in 25 days, I will be running. And I will finish. Whenever I run I constantly repeat to myself the saying: “finish stronger than you started”. I hope that kicks in around mile 11, because by that time I will just want to finish.

I have no intention of ever running a full marathon. 26.2 miles, now that is wayyyyy too many miles. For all who have completed one or multiple full marathons, much congrats! Today I drove 26 miles. I felt like that was too long. To run that distance, well not in my foreseeable future.

13.1. The magic number. I will take all wishes of luck starting now.

My life is full of surprises. Who knew that at 31 I would be running my first half marathon. At age 15, I hated to run 1 mile. At 15 if someone had told me that I would be running a half marathon in 16 years I would have laughed. At 15 I was the fat kid. I hated exercise because it hurt. I was 15 and nearly 200 pounds, wearing a size 16-18. Yeah I hated shopping, and health was at the bottom of my priority list.  At 15 I thought that I would never be attractive, I thought I would never have a boyfriend, and I had never imagined what life would be like at less than 200 pounds. Plus size was my life.

At age 31, well lets just say that I have lost about 40 pounds along the way, no more plus size clothing, and without running, or yoga, or crossfit,  my day feels incomplete.

Wait! I think I found it. The inspiration!

For that sad 15-year-old girl who is living inside of me, I am going to kick the ass of these 13.1 miles. To prove to her that she can do anything. To prove to her that she has always been pretty no matter what size she is, that she can have any life she so chooses, and  just because she can’t do something now, well it doesn’t mean she won’t be able to demolish it 16 years from now.

I hate running, but I love life’s accomplishments. My 13.1 is about so much more than running. That good cause that I was looking for earlier, well call me selfish but the cause is all about me. It’s about everything that defines living, and taking back my life. To prove that I can do what I thought was severely impossible just a few years ago is truly an accomplishment. Although I will probably never (actually maybe I shouldn’t  say never), but probably never run a 26.2, that 13.1 will still make all the difference. Life is worth living, live it!

Also, as I run, I will remember closely the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing. Those individuals who set out to accomplish a goal, and the family members who came out to watch. Sadly tragedy has overtaken their personal accomplishments. Lets always remember Boston, and spread a message of peace on a daily basis.

 

 

positive thoughts, positive energy, positive experiences. 

 

 

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Posted in Black women, Dreams, Finding meaning, Goals, Life, Marathon, random, Relocation, Running, Self Discovery | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

10 years ago I was 21

Posted by Jenni C. on April 4, 2013

Hello April, wow I feel like I went to sleep and I woke up and it was April 1st. Ok maybe it just has been a really long time since I have written anything new. I blame…procrastination.

Well a little over two weeks ago I turned 31. Not as exciting as turning 30, but I come back to you a year older.

31 is somewhat of a weird age for me. I am not sure if I should start crying now, or if I should be excited that I am growing in wisdom. What happens at 31? In the last two weeks since my 31st birthday, well I can honestly say that I feel no different from when I was 29 or 30. I just know that on my 31st birthday my mother so nicely told me that I was falling behind and needed to get on the ball because when she was 31 she was already married with two kids. My brother was 6 and I was 3. Is that where my life should be at this point? Could I see myself married with two kids at this time in my life? Well a part of me wants to laugh loudly at that thought. I have a feeling that a husband and a set of kids would cramp my entire style of free spiritness.

Well that’s not totally true, there are those days when I do wish I had a husband to do everything for me (that is what husband’s do right?). I would like to have kids who bear my resemblance so I could look at how cute they are, and have them follow me around because I am so awesome. Ok, maybe it is not that simple, but a family sometimes is a nice thought, that will come with time.

It feels slightly strange at 31 to be 10 years removed from 21. When I was 21 I felt like time stood still, I never really thought of what life would be like at 31. At 21 I knew that age 31 was ancient, and it was a far off age that would not find a place in my reality.

Where was I at 21? Well I was a senior in college, I knew I would go to graduate school, so I guess I had envisioned a future    up to age 25. My birthday was during spring break, so I celebrated it as a college spring breaker in South Beach, Miami. Oh memories. The days of reckless behaviors and irresponsible drinking, oh wait I still do the irresponsible drinking at times, but I will admit that the frequency has significantly decreased.

At 21 I felt like a child. At 31 I am a full-fledged adult. I wish there was a manual on how to be an adult, because I frequently wonder if I am doing it right. I am human, I make mistakes, I wish there was a way to avoid those mistakes.

As an adult I have responsibilities. Responsibilities not only to myself, but to my employer, to my clients, and to my family. Sometimes I miss the days of being a care free college student, although some college students have responsibilities to others, I sure wasn’t one of them. At 21 I felt life was hard, it wasn’t. I thought I knew all the answers, well I didn’t. I thought I had a perfectly thought out plan of what my life would be like, it didn’t work out that way. Life happens, plans change, daily.

At 31 I am not the same person that I was when I was 21. I consider that a very good thing. I have grown, learned more about myself, and can’t wait to grow some more. However, some days at 31 I still feel uncertain about life. At times I am unsure about plans, I question myself more than ever, I am on overdrive most days, and I feel like my life map has been thrown out the window. Direction would be nice at 31. At 21 I hated direction, at 31 I am begging for a clear planned out map. I guess I will start working on that now.

Life moves fast at 31. At 21, years moved at a snail’s pace, and  time took forever to jump forward. At 31, well I blink my eyes and suddenly its April. Time moves fast, I need to make the most out of being 31 before it’s over, and suddenly I will be crying for real at 32.

Posted in Finding meaning, Life, random, Relocation, Self Discovery, Turning 30, Twenties | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Hello 2013! (even though I was not really ready for you yet)

Posted by Jenni C. on January 2, 2013

Happy New Year!

Welcome in 2013! Ok I know I’m a day late with the Happy New Year, let’s just blame that on the hang over. I can’t believe its 2013 already, while I am sitting here still trying to figure out what I exactly did in 2012. At the start of every year there is always talk about resolutions, goals, starting over, doing something different, and whatever other changes that should be made. How many of them do we actually accomplish? As the end of the first week of the new year comes to a close, how many of those goals remain prioritized on our to do list? Maybe we should all set one goal for this year, one and only one, that way we can remember what it is and it can remain a priority. I for one know I still have a carry over of goals from last year, so I guess those will be my goals for 2013 as well. If 2013 is a good year, then hopefully I will have a new goal for 2014.

As we start a new year, there are always the same thoughts that come to my mind. Each year happens fast. I’m still sitting here wonder where did 2012 go, was I sleep because parts of the year almost seem apparently very dream like. I think I want time back, well kinda sorta. In the blink of an eye life happens. Life happens whether we are ready for it or not, there is no pause, there is no rewind, just play. Moments change, people come, people go, through it all life will continue to happen.

One question you may ask yourself is, “how can I make this year better than last year”? Well today why not start by asking yourself, “how can I make today a little bit better than yesterday”? We don’t always have to wait for the end of an old year, or the start of new year to decide that we want better, or want to do something different. Life always happen, so we always have the ability to change, the time to change0, and the moments to change.

As with every new year, I hope 2013 is great. How do I plan to make it great? Well I won’t dwell on my past mistakes, not look overwhelmingly too much into the future, take life’s moment’s for what they are, remember that everyday is a lesson learned, and remember that each day is my very own opportunity to do something different. I often say that I could make major accomplishments if I would just get out of my own way, I think today I mean it. A new day, A new hour, A new minute, A new second, A new moment, A moment to live.

Did you think of your one goal yet? Well I didn’t, give me some time and I will be sure to narrow it down.

Happy 2013! It’s a new year, a new day, a new time to be the best you. Don’t be afraid to start over daily, setbacks or part of life, the best part about set backs is that you can have an even greater comeback. Enjoy the day, and have a very Happy New Year!

Positive thoughts, positive energy, positive experiences.

Posted in Finding meaning, Life, New Year, random, Relocation | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Evolution: The dating edition

Posted by Jenni C. on July 4, 2012

One of the greatest things about life is that it is always changing. Change is constant, and because of this we always know its coming.  We evolve. As a species we are always evolving. Evolution signifies growth, without change there can be no growth.  The mind cannot stay stagnant, it grows, and by growing we know we are living.

In the midst of changing (or growing older I guess), I have come to realize that my whole entire dating life has made its very own evolution. I must admit that it is an evolution that is a long time coming, and one that was much needed. As I look back on my dating past, I do so with the hope that I have taken in the lessons learned, and my dating future will be better and wiser. The past is a reflection of a point where we once were, I quickly realized that I want to be somewhere else, not there.

Recently I have noticed a common theme when I go out on dates, I am bored out of my mind! I find myself waiting for that moment of climax that will add meaning to any date, but it never comes. Let me explain more: My mind travels a million miles a minute, I have tried to slow down my thoughts…it doesn’t work.  I have an endless array of thoughts that are constantly occupying my brain space. The thoughts are never ending and always changing (hence why I suck so bad at yoga, and why I struggle with sleeping through the night). Therefore, due to this  fact it is pretty difficult to hold my attention. When one thought enters I am already about 10 more thoughts ahead.  I end up purposely looking for an attention grabbing something, just so I can focus. The focus is much needed, and when I am focused, I am finally at peace.  When a person is able to hold my attention I am in delight. I am yet to find a man who can hold my attention so I can enjoy a date with him.

With my evolution in dating I have discovered what I am genuinely interested in…A good conversation! With excessive dating,  I commonly get asked the question, “what are you looking for?” Finally I have discovered the heart of what I am looking for. Intellectual stimulation! A mental orgasm that will lead me yearning for a second and third date as soon as possible. In my world of thinking, if a man can easily bring my mind to a state of climax with his words, the sexual climax must be a million times better. Right?

But seriously, I usually would not think that it would be this difficult to find a date with conversation that is motivating and inspiring, a conversation that you want to never end. Am I asking for too much? Probably. But I don’t care. I like a man who can make me think. A man who is not afraid to challenge me. I know I may seem brilliant, but I do have my moments when I am wrong.  Does anyone read books anymore? I will even enjoy a great conversation about why our whole political system is so messed up. Wow am I boring or just old? Not sure.  A few years ago I would have thought these were boring topics, now they are topics that I chase after.

A friend told me that I have evolved myself out of the dating pool, that doesn’t sound so good to me. I don’t ask for too much. I just ask to date a grown man. I’m not a total prude, I love talking about sports, music, movies, but I want more. I want depth. I guess I want to finally be an adult, in an adult relationship. Can we say scary?

Now that I have embraced my evolution, I just have to find my male counterpart who has embraced his.  In my 20’s I was only attracted to the physical appearance of a guy, that was enough for me and all that I needed to make him my boyfriend. Now don’t get me wrong, I still am a sucker for a physically attractive man, I actually need that too, but maybe not as much. In hindsight, it’s never going to be all I need, and I truly need more to make a lasting relationship.  So where do I start? My new place to pick up men who read books…the bookstore! Wait, do any bookstores still exist?

 

Positive thought, positive energy, positive experiences

 

Posted in Black women, dating, Finding meaning, Life, Love, men, relationships, Relocation, Self Discovery, single girl | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

P.U.S.H. (Pray Until Something Happens)

Posted by Jenni C. on February 6, 2012

prayer..Pray Until Something Happens. I remember seeing that somewhere (probably on a  Facebook status), but it is a line that has been stuck in my mind recently.

Recently I have been undergoing severe writer’s block. I have been going through a period of having ideas to write about, thoughts about what I want to say, yet I am missing the words to express these thoughts. My mind is not connecting properly. It is a frustrating experience, you ever want to speak on something but cannot find the right words to say it. I feel like that now. I attribute that feeling to a period of overwhelm. I like to describe it as brain overload. Some days I feel like my brain is about to explode. Too much information, but the inability to disseminate the information properly. The outcome, an inner explosion of meaningless thoughts. So once again I come to a point where I don’t know what to do, I don’t know how to change it so I take the easy route I PUSH (Pray Until Something Happens).

I am a firm believer of the power of prayer, if you are not that’s fine.  I wont force you to pray or force you to believe in a higher power. I believe in the power of prayer because it has worked for me. Now no I haven’t had a life changing miracle moment where I am suddenly healed from a deathly illness, but I have had small moments where prayer has kept me going in life. When I get scared, I pray, when I feel angry, I pray, and when I feel like my life is lost and I don’t know what direction to turn, I pray. I keep praying because I know something will happen. I don’t feel alone anymore, God takes the burden with each prayer so I am assured that something is happening.

In my career, some days I feel overwhelmed. Overwhelmed by confusion and lack of immediate thought. I am a Therapist, I find people look to me for answers. Most days I don’t have an answer. The constant interaction with clients who suffer from strong feelings of depression or suicidal thoughts is emotionally draining. Clients look to me for help, they look to me to make it better. I pray that I am able to do that. But some days I feel like I can’t do it, I start to feel as if  I have given all my positive energy away to clients and I have nothing left for myself. The burden has then caught up to me. I want to crawl in between the sheets of my bed, put the comforter over my head and disappear. When I get the feeling of wanting to go away, I have to find just a small amount of energy deep down inside to keep going and PUSH. In order to PUSH not much energy is required, so it is simple. To keep going and believing takes a leap of faith, a faith that has to stay constant for something to happen. I then get back to finding me.

Eventually I get up. I wipe the problems of others off me. I keep going. I find my energy and eventually I am better able to  help my clients to keep going. I often find myself asking them what helps them to keep going, and yes they usually have a response. Many of them have faith that it will get better, they have the belief that life will always get better. So no matter how bad it seems, no matter how stuck you are in the moment, and no matter how overwhelming life may get, if you are able to just PUSH, God is already working to make something happen.

 

 

Positive thoughts, positive energy, positive experiences

Posted in Fears, Finding meaning, Prayer, self help | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

We all have a story, what’s yours?

Posted by Jenni C. on January 2, 2012

We all have a story to tell, whats yours?

The only way you can really know a person is to actually know their story. Know their history, know where they came from, how they got to their current situation. It is easy to pass judgments on others, to make assumptions about their present lives because we do not know, or put little effort into caring about their back story. The story that has made them who they are, the story is what has created the person who you see in front of you.

One thing I have learned through my career is that everyone has a story. Though some stories may look the same, they are all very different, the differences make us all unique, the stories create inspiration for others. Hawaii has a large homeless population. Each of my homeless clients has a very unique story. To look at an individual homeless person, it is easy to pass judgment. To assume they have caused their own situation. However, they also have a  story of survival, a story of hope, of story of love, a story with an ending that is yet to be written.

Recently I saw a man living in a box. I wondered what is story was. I also thought that no matter what life I lead today, it is also very possible that I could end up living in a box. Life is not to be taken for granted. To many of the homeless in Hawaii, Hawaii is not paradise. Hawaii is a living hell. Some feel stuck, some feel empty, some feel that everyday is the same, no movement. The ocean waves become torture, the daily sunshine enhances one’s own personal misery. Depending on the way you view their story, it could be one of sadness, or a story that inspires change in your own life.

Since everyone has a story that is unique, start by taking the the time to stop and pay attention. To listen or to watch, to allow ourselves into the world of someone else because they may hold the key for that change that we need for our own lives. In 2012, make it a year where we view the world through the eyes of others. Expanding our lives by allowing an understanding of the story of others.

Tell your own story without fear.  Keep telling it. Your story can create change, can inspire, you can make the difference. For the new year, try something different for others. Allow others to know you, to understand where you come from. Stay positive, decrease assumptions, and live without judgments.  Be open. Inspire.

What’s your story?

 

 

Positive thoughts, positive energy, positive experiences.

Posted in Finding meaning, Hawaii, New Year, Relocation | Tagged: , , , | 2 Comments »