Posted in living life, Relationships, unmoldable

Am I Pretty?

When you go through a big breakup, one of those Hollywood or Nicholas Sparks worthy heartbreaks, life is really hard.

I think that the worst part about a serious break up with someone that you thought was going to be your future is that you doubt yourself. You begin to doubt not only the talents you were most proud of, whether that was cooking, sewing, being funny, or whatever, but you begin to doubt that you can even exist and that’s a horrible feeling.

I had the epiphany that this happens to individuals after I had a really bad break up of my own. I spent a large amount of time in negativity, a dark hole that was easy for me to fall into, before I went out to a big western rodeo event with my older sister and as we were walking around a couple things happened.

For starters two older couples stopped to tell me that I was beautiful; but she was prettier, I responded in my head.

Then a creepy older gentleman told me I could sit at their table all night so that he could just stare at me; You would say that to any girl, I retorted in my head.

Then a young cowboy asked me to dance, then another, and another; It’s just because they can see that I won’t step on their feet, I rationalized. 

Then walking back to our place for the night two separate cars singled me out of the group and called attention to me, trying to get my phone number or get my name.

At this point I just turned to my sister in disbelief. “Am I pretty?” I asked in absolute wonderment. It genuinely shocked and surprised me.

What is going on? I kept thinking to myself.

My sister turned around and said, “I’ve always known you were pretty, it just makes me happy that enough other people are finally getting vocal about it that you are starting to listen.”

 

Our world is not a build-up world, it is a tear-down world. We don’t compliment people on their good attributes, instead we give these back handed compliments that sound more like insults but if you REALLY listen they MAY have meant them as a compliment.

“For Pete’s sake, eat some food – you’re too skinny!”

“Heels?! Aren’t you tall enough already or do you just want to rub it in? You do look nice though…”

“Really? Chocolate? You’re going to eat chocolate? Probably just because you can.”

 

Promise yourself that you’ll always know your worth, that you should never doubt who you are and your significance on this world. If you are ever having a REALLY GOOD day, write yourself some notes. Put them in sealed envelopes and number them. When you have a bad day, read those messages that you wrote to yourself when you were feeling on top of the world. The kind of “on top of the world” that a bully of an employer or some significant other can never break down.

This works.

I know this because I used to do the opposite. I lived in such a negative world of self-hate that I would write myself notes about how horrible I was so that when good things happened I could read them to remind myself that I didn’t deserve them, that they would go away, and so much more. To this day I have a large collection of the mean things people say about me online and in person. It’s this awful game I play with myself. I started to keep two positives for every negative and it’s been slowly changing. This self-image that I hold for myself.

What really is pretty? 

Pretty is about who you are on the inside, not what you are on the outside, and NOBODY controls who you are on the inside but YOU.

You. Are. Pretty.

Posted in living life, Relationships

Perspective; 20/15 Vision

I had a witty post all planned about my latest bout with the eye doctor at the end of 2016. I was pretty excited for the appointment, why? Because I was at the end of my two year waiting period to see if I could qualify for laser eye surgery.

Walking in they asked the generic question of, “Has everything been okay with your contacts?”

I explained that, “Yup! Things are great but …” and then I proceeded to share my self-diagnosis.

“I think the last set of contacts that I got were bad though. As soon as I got them, they’ve been kind of weird in my left eye. If I close my right eye however, I can get my left eye to focus so maybe my right eye is overpowering my left? Does that happen?”

Bless my eye doctor, she gave me kind of a funny sidelong glance (I didn’t think anything of it) and then she said, “That’s very rare, but maybe it did happen. Why don’t we take a look at your eyes?”

She handed me the giant, flat, ladle-like spoon to cover one eye and then read off the eye chart. I remember when I came to my first eye test, I had memorized the eye chart because it was an “eye test” and I didn’t want to fail the test. I was 8 years old at the time, aren’t kids just the darndest things?

I can’t tell you how shocked I was when she told me that my contacts hadn’t been bad nor that one of my eyes was over dominating the other, but that my eyes had dropped drastically in their ability to do their job since the last time that I was there.

I had to ask, “Is there something that I am doing wrong that is causing this? Contacts with all the arena dust?”

Nope.

To the average person, it wouldn’t be that BIG of a thing. To me, it is.

I’m already pretty blind.

The reason that I hate being blind is because I feel so vulnerable when I don’t have my glasses on or contacts in. The thought that someone could break into my house, it could catch on fire, I could lose my seeing-aides and then what? I’m a sitting duck.

The reason that I hated that they had gotten so much worse was that I have been in the process of eye check-ups over the last two years in the hopes to get approved for laser-eye surgery. This would result in reason number one being nonexistent.

My eyes had changed enough that I had to start over a whole new two-year cycle of approval for the laser-eye surgery approval. It was heartbreaking. To go just over two years and then have to start all over? It was heartbreaking. I am acutely aware of the fact that I will have to change my Drivers License and such shortly if it continues because I will be legally blind.

Legally blind.

And that is what this whole blog post was GOING to be about.

Then, just a short week later, I got the devastating phone call that my cousin David had been killed in work-related accident and, just like that, it didn’t matter that my eyes had gotten a little bit worse in two years. img_2708

There are so many things, so many animals, so many benefits, so many people that we take for granted on a day-to-day basis that just absolutely needs to stop. My cousin David is one of the most wonderful, genuine and kind individuals that I will ever have the chance to know. I remember how proud he was when I signed to play college basketball at Oregon State – our families favorite college team of all time.

To realize that his smiling face and big bear hugs weren’t going to be present at family reunions or sports games in the future was absolutely shocking. I was so heartbroken. So floored.

img_2719He leaves behind a wife and two sons; the kind of close-knit family that I have always dreamed of for myself. One where the love for each other is so evident, where hanging out with each other is the greatest thing in the world. He leaves it behind in only his physical presence but not in his spirit, love and soul; God has taken care of that! David will always be a part of us, our family, our past, our present and our future.

And then I was angry at myself for thinking that my eyes getting worse was such a BIG thing for a 25 year-old.

Do you know how many 25 year-old’s have it so much worse than me?

 

I mean some have it worse than me when it comes to vision and not only do I have the ability with contacts and glasses to have 20/15 vision but that I can afford to buy them myself.

What was supposed to be a blog about 20/15 vision with the use of a LOT of help and 1/4″ thick corrective lenses became a blog about 20/15 vision of what we need to be more appreciative and grateful for in this world.

 

 

 

I challenge all of you to start a gratitude log, to pray more often, to reach out and consciously think and tell those that you are thankful for.

Posted in living life, Relationships

Thriving on the Borderline of Insanity

In order to get the most out of life you’ve got to make it a challenge; constantly push yourself to the borderline of insanity and that is where opportunities will begin to reward you for your hard work, ambition, and drive!

Sometimes I don’t feel like I am doing so good. I feel like I am barely holding on by a thread. I feel like the iceberg is tilting over and I’m about to lose hold and fall to my death.

We ALL know that feeling, that feeling that one more feather on your plate is literally going to break not just the camel’s back but your back as well.

I THRIVE on this borderline insanity.

I don’t know if it was growing up doing both 4H in three different project areas while playing basketball or partaking in rodeo drill team while playing Division I college basketball, but somewhere along the line I hit this ability to work really well in crazy situations.

Normality and complacency are not things I am okay with.

The second things begin to get “normal” you begin to get “complacent” and becoming complacent is one of my greatest fears. I fear complacency because the second you sit down and rest someone out there is going to be grinding. They are going to get that job offer, that amazing opportunity, that sponsor, whatever it is that I want they are going to get it.

Let’s say the winning lottery ticket was on the ground and it was free to whoever would pick it up, you would pick it up right? Would you still pick it up if you had to run a mile for it? You didn’t have to beat anyone there, you just had to do the work and pick up the lottery ticket. I would do it. I would do it everyday for the rest of my life.

When you are living life there is this perfect “hum” as I like to refer to it as. It’s the noise that my 1964 Nova Super Sport made once we got that 350 small block hooked up and running; she was literally humming. That’s how you want to live your life. Get yourself into the highest, most efficient form of you and push yourself as close as you feasibly can to the “breakover” moment of going insane.

For those of you who have been in this situation it’s pretty amazing. To live your life here, well, that’s a feat that’s much harder. When you’re in this position, all of a sudden it seems like everything is going your way. You are getting opportunity upon opportunity, you are building in life, and so much more.

The catch is that when you are in this humming stage and something goes wrong, this is where you find out what you are made of. Your hours at work get cutback, you’ve made your business so big you’ve outsourced to someone else to deal with a whole sector of your company. Usually this crashing down isn’t always something bad, sometimes it’s just the opening of more free time.

What are you supposed to do with free time?!

This is where complacency drifts in. It feels nice to be “normal,” just like all your friends and family. Then you start missing opportunities.

Nothing aggravates me more than when I don’t capitalize on an opportunity. I consistently live with the feeling that this next opportunity or connection is going to be my “big break.”

Another factor on getting into the “hum stage” is who you surround yourself with. This one is so important but isn’t one that you normally think about. I like to stay loyal to my original friends but at some point you are going to have to branch out and make new friends. This is really scary for me but it has resulted in some of the greatest, most motivating friendships a girl can have.

I try to surround myself with those that I feel are above me. I used to always try to be the smartest person in the friend group, at least in my area of expertise, but now I try to be the dumbest. Not meaning that I stop furthering my knowledge or education but that I surround myself with REALLY intelligent individuals. It takes so much stress off of you to have these friendships.

For example, one of my best friends from high school is currently attending veterinarian school. I absolutely am so dang proud of her! She has had the goal of being a veterinarian for as long as I have known her, she tailored her high school education around it, she went to vet-camps throughout the summers, and she pursued her career with a venegence letting nothing stop her. The fact that I have someone SO knowledgeable about horses in my back pocket is a relief. Coming out of winter my back up rodeo horse ended up getting borrowed by a high school equestrian student for their state meet. My poor horse had been fairly inactive working just 20-30 minutes twice a week to all of a sudden being ridden hard two to three times a week. She started to lose weight and lose weight fast. I couldn’t drastically change her feed as she was going to be traveling a significant distance for the event but my vet-student friend being the vet-student that she is, immediately contacted me that she was worried about her weight. Once I explained the struggles I was having she was quick to find some supplements and feeds that would work better for her and, just like that, she was getting back on track. Surround yourselves with those who are more knowledgeable and be able to listen to them no matter what!

Train your body, train your brain, and train your enthusiasm (this is the most important) to survive and thrive in the moments of insanity. I think this is truly when we are living our lives and this borderline of insanity is what is assisting us in truly living our life! There is a time to sit back and rest, that is when our bodies are tired and can not do anything more. That’s when we sit back and tell great stories about the “good old days!”

Well, at least in my opinion!