tug at my heart strings, why don't ya?

i've caught myself as 'that girl' more than a handful of times in recent past. 'that girl', in this specific reference, is the one that coos over squishy baby faces, that loses her s**t when a dog (in my current language: a DOGGIE!!!) comes into my workplace, and that is moved to (near)tears when endearing, random acts of kindness really hit home.

yes, i'm a little blubbery ('weepy' isn't as funny of a word) these days.

i totally lost it when i drove past a man on a street corner having a moment with his, albeit TOTALLY amazing, Golden Doodle this evening. i saw this outward expression of full-on other-being and other-world l-o-v-e for that furry little beast and i couldn't tear my eyes away. so, as most people and relationship centric happenings make me do, i got to thinking.

open-ness to love is one thing. being 'ready' in life for another person to compliment the radness that you've already got going on is beautiful. being the outward expression of that? being vulnerable in what i love and want and need? not this chick. well, not until recently..i would say. 

being so in love, i mean SO in love with each of our 'me', our going after with passion those tummy flip inducing visions of our best lives, the people that make up your world and being 100% totally on for loving and loving big every beautiful thing in your life is bold. it's bold, big, beautiful and every other epic word not starting with a b. and, consequently, it's all about our BE-ing.

i'm totally cool with being into what i'm into and who i am. with liking knitting (and being pretty-not-bad-and-kinda good at it), with being a wordy beast who loves writing and storytelling, with being totally into green juice AND appreciating quality mikshakes - it's all wrapped into my me. what i'm so stoked for? sharing that. loving every moment that i get to share it. laughing. more. always. all the time. and then even more after that. 

i'm choosing to be love. to be laughter. and to be the best silliest expression of that. so yeah, when i get a dog, i'm going to be that girl on the corner totally in love with that smushy face. and i'll show someone driving by what it means to be and share love. 

now, to get into a pet friendly apartment...

an ode to online....the things you learn in the dating world

let it be known: i have been dating. online. THREE YEARS AGO, i would not have had the balls to tell anyone that - actually, i woudln't have even thought about putting my name and picture on any site anywhere for fear of someone seeing it and outing me as 'online' - a status that most definitely i was TERRIFIED of being associated with. TWO YEARS AGO, i more or less wore the 'i'm online, i'm rad, i'm gonna be findin' me a boyfriend right quick' tshirt and was quick to tell anyone how i was leaping into the dating pool - quick to share juuuuust in case they might, again, see me online and beat me to the punch of telling other people. again, blokcing mechanism. and, a loud one. ONE YEAR AGO, i had a lingering profile and was actively waiting for someone, anyone, to knock on my proverbial dating-door (ie: message me with a witty note that might spark an interest because, gosh knows, i was all to caught up in being 'busy' to take a stand for what i really wanted in a man and make a real effort to attract that....)

since then, you'll be relieved (maybe not as much as I am) to know that my outlook has shifted from the 'hell no!' to the 'hallelujah online!' to the 'meh' to a very healthy place - of curiosity, connection and confidence. most of the time. haha.

and so, in this seemingly life-long experience i have recently reflected on a couple things i have learned and feel compelled to share. because, there is a 'silver lining of learning' and opportunity for reflection around every date - even the ones where the sweet man wears corduroy pants and a Metallica t-shirt.

learning point #1. you get out what you put in. for every 'dang, still no messages', i could only look to how actively - or inactively - i was involving myself in the process. trend in the jess-life is when busy-ness gets the best of me,  my me-life gets the worst of me. the times i had the most fun on dates and met the most interesting people were the times i spent time being interested - and connecting with people that i was inspired by.  good reminder in how to be present to what i want and not auto-pilot my way through life.

learning point #2. i've got a good gut - and it's time to listen to it. that weird pitty feeling in my stomach when something doesn't sound right or something in a profile rubs me the wrong way? LISTEN to it. stop forcing a conversation if all signs point to 'run the other way - don't even stop at the front door to get your shoes!!' - and trust what i know and how i know i want to be engaged. #nuffsaid

learning point #3. life repeats itself, if you let it. goes hand in hand with trusting my gut. when i feel myself not being really 'me' to catch someone's attention - i need to stop. not only am i repeating a bad habit and trying to 'fit a mold' - i'm not valuing mine or their time - which ends up in one too many coffee dates (and normally it truly is just one) and a feeling of 'womp womp' upon departure. i'm moreso me in every interaction now than ever - and have to remember in every split-second-of-doubt to be me, in every moment. all ways, always.

i might be done with the online thing for now - and know that these wee lessons-on-life apply as much in the off-line-love-life - if not moreso. practice, practice, practice.....right?


new month!

holy heck, welcome to september!! the creative spark that put me up to the challenge of reconnecting with my passion for writing sent out an email the other day (to other inspired, creative and productive individuals that she had challenged with the same tempting feat of committing to taking on their passion for that something special that gets us all excited) to check in, check up, and rechallenge.  and not a challenge in a negative connotation where you feel you can say 'no', but a re-offering of giving yourself the space to connect with your creative side, and keep up with the projects we had all set out to work on, work through and develop through the month of August.

and thank you, miss laurel, for doing so, as i was more than starting to make excuses and let larry the ego (im pretty sure thats the name we landed on for him......) tell me that i needed time to find a purpose to write something - that the value was falling out of what i was writing about, and that the things that have been going on in my personal life took precedence, and were not to be used as insight or content for my online voice and what i want to share.  i became convinced that compartmentalizing was the only way to make an impact.  which truly is silly and goes against the way i live day to day. 

helloooooooo inauthenticity.

work, personal life, health, all go hand in hand.  while perhaps the content does not always flow from one part of my life to another, who i choose to show up as, how i represent myself and the principles that i operate under are constants. non-negotiable.  i am a coach and mentor who shares openly to create space for the development of authentic relationships. i am a loving friend and family member who is a constant and clear stand for the happiness and wellbeing of others.  i choose my attitude and who i am going to be for others each and every day.

THUS: i choose to take on this project for september without excuse, complaint or ego.  just doing it because i love writing, i love sharing, and i love relatedness.

and i love love.

just sayin'

xo j