It’s been a month away from my writing practice and I swear my absence was for good reasons (actually, they’re all excuses.) I was consumed by classes that started on August 21 (which doesn’t explain why I didn’t write from the 16th until the 20th) and then I was swamped with class and preparations for my largest event of the year at my soon-to-be-defunct job. My last day at the University was supposed to be on Sept. 8 but a massive hurricane formed in the Caribbean, canceling classes and all student-related activities, and moving up my last day to Sept. 6. Other than that, I can’t remember anything else of significance.
what I do know is i need to get back to my writing practice. I keep putting it off. but it must become a habit, like going to the gym or brushing my teeth.
Today I was going through emails and one of the health-related emails I read talked about the two important relationships in healthy eating: 1. your relationship with yourself and 2. your relationship with plants (its a clean eating/juicing listserv.)
As part of the first relationship, the email suggested creating a list “5 things you love about yourself.” and that actually sounded like a good blog post to jump back on the horse. I’ve been in a horrible mood, lashing out at everyone, reliving upsetting moments, and generally wanting to pepper the middle finger emoji into every conversation. So maybe thinking about how great I am will turn my mood around. ahem—
without further ado, and in no particular order, i present…THE FIVE THINGS I LOVE ABOUT MYSELF
- I MAKE BOLD DECISIONS: I am passionate about certain things and when I make my mind up, there’s very little that can be done to stop me. Case in point — I wanted to study abroad. I did. I wanted to join the Peace Corps. I did. I wanted to quit my job and pursue school full-time. I did. In instances where I don’t have anyone to turn to for advice, those are the moments I trust my gut and nothing else. And the truth is, none of my bold choices ever failed me. I do WTF i want. Win or lose, it was my call. I am always emotional listening to Sinatra’s “My Way” even at a young age, the lyrics hit me at my core.
- For what is a man, what has he got?
If not himself, then he has naught
To say the things he truly feels and not the words of one who kneels
- For what is a man, what has he got?
- I LIKE TO SHARE: When I find something I love, I want others to experience it. A book, an article, a video, a tweet, a meme, a new workout class, a recipe, a podcast, a quote. Anything that really moves me or interests me, I want to share with others. Maybe it’ll give them inspiration as well. I love to share in conversations, via text, email, online, social media (especially TWITTER), at meetings, during deep conversations, one-on-one, in bed, mid-workout..anytime! My brain is a storage space of all the random songs, articles, podcasts, observations, thoughts and connections I have cultivated the last 30 years and I want to share. Sharing leads to commonality, interaction, belonging. By the same token, I love when people share with me. News, restaurants, interesting facts, etc. Email, tag me, text me!
- I AM BOOTYFUL: omggg i know this sounds awful and I’ve been really mulling over what I want to write. it’s only five things i love about myself and im having a really tough time, so i think it points to a larger issue that maybe i need to address in more posts and maybe more therapy. and yes, its shallow and skin-deep. and trust me, i am extremely deep in many, many(!) ways. Also, I don’t have a J.Lo ass. I don’t even love my entire body (more red flags!) but I really, really enjoy my shape. maybe because i grew up in a black/latino neighborhood where in 9th grade, the boys in my P.E. class explained to me how great my shorts were and that’s when i started to notice it. but i have a pear-shaped body, with a big butt and i quite enjoy my silhouette in jeans, dresses, skirts, and yoga pants. It’s my favorite feature and I know if i keep working hard at the gym, i can really tone up and have a healthier, stronger, and leaner body (wit a fattie.)
- I AM COMMITTED TO WELLNESS: This is a pretty new development in my life, at least in the last 10-12 years. I didn’t grow up with an exercise culture, or healthy eating habits, so it’s taken a ton of effort, education, and blind navigation to incorporate it into my everyday life. it seems so mindless that all of us aren’t equipped with this information from the start, but actually im finding a lot of other things my immigrant parents lacked when they shaped mine and my sister’s early youth. your physical health is so closely tied to every other aspect of your life, including mental health and i am proud that i have made this a priority. I go to a cross-training gym five times a week, a dance class once or twice a week, and looking to incorporate running into my routine. i try, although i could try harder, to eat healthy meals made at home. i try to practice positive psychology, i am still learning about mindfulness and i’d like to try and be more confident. the other thing that wellness has taught me is to evaluate my own unique relationship with the pendulum that swings between forgiveness and discipline/commitment. when i am on top of my game, i feel amazing, but i’ve also become more forgiving when i fall off the wagon. everything is a process, there are no easy shortcuts and it all comes down to me.
- I AM GENUINE: Not including the last three weeks where I’ve been in level 10 bitchmode, I am usually peppy, genuinely engaged and enthusiastic. And it’s earnest. I don’t really get sarcasm, it goes over my head, and I like happy, cuddly stories and good-natured people. I like seeing the best in others and sending positive vibes to friend and foe alike. I’d really like to get back to that, once this horrid mood is over.
So there it is, pen pals. Five things I like about myself. I was right, this did help lift my spirits just a tad.
I look forward to keeping this up regularly. DISCIPLINE!