Almost a year ago, at the dawn of my reemergence into the great Beehive State – I wrote a blog entry that was entitled: “An Open Letter to Myself.” In this letter I not only offered up advice to yours truly that I’m sure as shit I didn’t take; but I also challenged myself about how it was I wanted to live my life from that point forward. Times were different then; I was on the precipice of what would turn out to be one of the most arduous, adventurous, enthralling, and exhausting years of my life. I felt like a goddamn newborn kitten that was opening her eyes for the first time and trying to make sense of the world in front of her. I actually kind of wish I was a kitten because then I could just be fluffy and cute and nap a lot and instead I had to do a lot of soul searching and chakra realignments to get to where I’m at today. Believe it or not, I’m probably the best version of myself that I’ve ever been; which may be surprising to anyone who has crossed my path in the last several weeks. While it’s been mildly chaotic in my universe as of late, I’m reminded that these are only brush strokes on the canvas of my life; it’s not the whole piece of art. It’s been 313 days since I traversed the country, cat in tow, and I’ve essentially lived several lifetimes already. In rumination, I reflect on the words I wrote last June:
“In addition to drinking good beer, eating good food, and being surrounded by good people; you will live each moment of each and every day to the maximum fullness which is a pretty rad thing. You will feel “feel good” moments wherever and whenever you go. You’ll pay attention to the little things like rose bushes that are in bloom, the sound your chucks make when as they pound the pavement while you walk, and you’ll never grow tired of the way the skyscrapers look against the mountains at sunset.
You will be in your element because you are with yourself. This is the time to make a promise, that even when life isn’t as simple as hikes that end in waterfalls, fresh as coffee from the Farmer’s Market, and as kind and sweet as a Mormon missionary – that you will exist here in this space. That you never stop trying to attain the next level of happy, bettering yourself, and most importantly – that you will not only stop to notice that the roses are in bloom, but that you will bloom wherever you’re planted.”
I felt compelled, as we round the mark of my almost year anniversary, to continue this letter to myself. And so I will.
Dear Tanya (Part Duex,)
I never want you to forget that life is beautiful. Like grossly, brilliantly, make you want to cry over nothing beautiful. The worst thing ever is when you don’t notice things like the fact that two tulips blossomed in your front yard, or that the mountains are so perfect and clear they look like they were painted in your rearview mirror. When you stop seeing and appreciating beauty that is your cue that something is wrong; and that you need to fix it. There is nothing you can’t repair – whether it be your sink or your soul.
That being said – know that you will never be perfect but that you are perfect the way you are. We all make mistakes. One of the things that defines our character is how we handle our mistakes. If we lie about having made a mistake, then it can’t be corrected and it festers. On the other hand, if we just give up because we made a mistake, none of us would get far in life. I accept myself in spite of my flaws and I accept that my life is unfolding in the divine right order and that there is a reason to why all things happen and celestial order to all calamities. I am not my past, I am not my scars, I am a divine being, a warrior princess, and love and light.
I want you to remember how brave you are, and learn to harness that valiancy on your good days and your bad. Life isn’t always going to be sublime and fall into place; it’s a battle and a struggle that you will always live through. Sometimes you’ll get lost in a bottle of Jack Daniel’s and sometimes you will get lost in savasana. In either event, I hope that you continue to honor your process even when it’s really unattractive and not something that you are proud of. Know that even in your darkest you are the light, and you will always find a way to shine.
Fuck being kind to yourself, be compassionate. The Dalai Lama once said: “Whether one believes in religion or not, and whether one believes in rebirth or not, there isn’t anyone who doesn’t appreciate kindness and compassion.” Why is it we struggle so much to extend the same olive branch to ourselves that we do for others? Think about the way you comfort others and realize right now that you’re probably not extending that same privilege to yourself. For instance, I had a conversation the other day with a friend who was involved with another person who quite frankly treats them like an a-hole. Do I tell this person that they’re stupid to even be in the situation in the first place and that the guy is a jerk and she should just forget about it? No. I listen, I connect, and I extend genuine compassion. I meet her where she is and offer up anything I possibly can that will be of service to her. Why is it so hard to do that for ourselves?
Grant yourself permission for that compassion. Grant yourself whatever it is you want and manifest it. You deserve whatever it is you desire, and never second guess that even for a millisecond. Be beautiful – drink good drinks and live the good life. Love on your tiny dog and all of your wonderful people – there are so many. They have certainly showed their faces and spirits to you in the last few weeks and never stop reminding them how grateful you are. Continue to be full of gratitude for the mundane, for the ordinary and uneventful.
A new year is upon us; 29 and feeling fine. I am transcending the tail-end of my 20’s and I am more than okay with it. May it be full of laughter and wisdom and love. May it reek of inner peace and joy. If possible, I would like to secrete happiness out of my pores. That’s way better than whatever adult acne has to offer. You’re only as happy as you make your mind up to be. You will never be happy if you continue to search for what happiness consists of. You will never live if you are looking for the meaning of life. Today I stop searching and let it continue to happen. It feels like some kind of ride but it’s turning out just to be life going absolutely perfectly.
Be kind to yourself.