“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”
— Theodore Roosevelt
It’s the last day of April, and that means my birthday month is officially drawing to a close. I love living in celebration, I’m a total and complete Aries — yes I’m hot headed, passionate, emotional, driven, totally extra, and now, hopefully a little wiser.
And, over these past 25 years, I’ve learned a lot. I’ve laughed a lot. I’ve loved a lot—( heads up to my main man, my homie, my squeeze, my instagram husband, my boyfriend, Peter).
I’ve had ups and downs, I’ve had serious battles with health (constantly questing to better my belly health), I’ve struggled with mental health, with self confidence, with who I am at my core. And I’ve come out stronger. I’ve come out happier. I’ve come out more in love with the woman I am and have become because I have worked so hard to become her. So, here they are, a few things I’ve learned along the way.
1.) Your body is the only place you get to live. Treat it with kindness and respect.
2.) You will make friends. You will lose friends. And the people who are meant to be in your life, will be.
3.) You are never as alone as you think you are.
4.) You are worth more than the sum of your parts. The person you are is what is beautiful. That is what matters most.
5.) No is a complete sentence. You do not owe an explanation to anyone. You are your own person. You are a strong person. And you deserve to say “no” to the things that do not enhance your life.
6.) Social media is not real. What you see on Instagram or Facebook or Pinterest is not real. It is a curated, filtered, picture perfect reality. I don’t even look like my own photos.
7.) You are not weak for giving someone a second chance. Or a third chance. You are allowed to feel your emotions as wholly as you please.
8.) Stand by your convictions, and be proud of them.
9.) Be open to learning. To failing. And to starting over. The end is never as final as it seems.
10.) You do not have to stay in toxic situations. It can be hard to take a leap of faith. To face the unknown. But, you are stronger than you know. You are resilient. You will overcome anything.
11.) You own your power. No one has the right or ability to make you feel a certain way about yourself unless you let them.
12.) Life is filled with beautiful, inspiring, imperfectly perfect moments. Live in them. Not the future. Not the past. But in the moment. They’ll be gone before you know it.
13.) Money can always be made. Take the trip. Buy the dress. Life is too short for regrets.
14.) Embrace your weird. For so long I tried to hide the things that make me unique! I’m a total goofball, a mega book nerd, a smarty pants, and a terrible singer.
15.) You can change your circumstances. I hated my job. And I was tired of complaining. I set my mind to it, and went out and found a new one. And I’ve never been happier.
16.) You are never too old to learn. I always said my blog suffered because I wasn’t a designer. So I decided to learn. And slowly I’ve been teaching myself photoshop and lightroom, and it’s paying off!
17.) The dog wants the pat as much as you want to pat the dog. Just ask the owner first.
18.) Make time for the people that matter most. Whether that’s your best friend, your mom, your sister, your dog, your significant other. Life is always happening. Live your life with the people that make you happiest.
19.) Do not feel guilty for eating the pasta. It’s delicious. Carbs aren’t evil. Live your life with balance. A balance that includes a little wine, a little chocolate, and a lot of happiness.
20.) Nothing will help you fall asleep faster than a hot bath, a cup of hot tea, and a good book.
21.) When a friend needs you, be there. Friendship is a two way street.
22.) Never underestimate the power of 8 hours of sleep. It will do wonders for your physical and mental health.
23.) It’s never too late to start over. Or to stop trying.
24.) Take a break. Your body knows when it needs rest. Be at peace with making peace.
25.) Something I took to heart this year — “You are permanent. Everything else is temporary.”