Even when no one is listening…

Archive for May, 2013

Settling In

I absolutely adore living in town. Even more so now that I’ve settled into my new studio apartment just down the street from my old place. I mean, come on, check out that view.

0531131144aHow could you not love living across the street from the heartbeat of the city? Ginger seems to approve 😉

0531131150aI am happy. I am blessed. I feel as though I am exactly where I belong. A year of healing and growth is in the making. Twelve months of pushing myself to new limits, exploring new places and making friends with myself. With each new step I am gaining confidence in myself and the goodness of humanity. I seem to have found the perfect pocket of people in Columbia City. The friendships I have developed over the past year are priceless. I couldn’t ask for more yet the universe continues to pour out it’s love in abundance. Thank you. Living has never been more delightful.

Much Love,

Rachel

P.S. Still working on decorating the place. So if you’re tall and live in my area come and help me!! 😉

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You’ve Changed Man

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People seem to have a hard time with change. And recently, I’ve undergone a lot of it. I am becoming a better person. A better Rachel. A better version of me.

My book, Becoming Rachel: The Art of Existing,  channels my journey of change. While I am looking forward to sharing my written account of my life with the world a bit of me is nervous. This book is an outpouring of my heart. Documented experiences of my transformation as a person. With each step along the way I’ve encountered opposition. Becoming Rachel, has been tiresome. More so, rewarding.

I love this cartoon.

The world is full of caterpillars refusing to become butterflies. Out of fear. Out of prejudice. Out of shame.

The world is full of butterflies afraid to use their wings. Stifling their beauty because others don’t understand the beauty of their transformation.

The world is full of experienced butterflies offering support and wisdom. Having already journeyed through the darkness of their cocoon and the expectations of others.  This is the kind of butterfly I want to be. And when I am faced with a bitter caterpillar I choose to reach out in love. I cannot judge them. I used to be that scared little worm. Judgmental, arrogant, ignorant and terrified. That is a difficult place to be. Trust me. I know.

Who ever or what ever or where ever you are….please know that this butterfly loves you. Just as you are. Change is possible. Change is beautiful. Change is the only certainty of life. Let me walk with you. Fly with you. Experience life with you.

The world is full of beautiful people who love you. You are not alone. Becoming you, the truest most natural version of you, is a choice you will not regret. Opposition is an opportunity. Change a challenge. There are those who will not understand. Love them. As the universe loves you. This is living. This is love. This is life.

 

Much love,

Rachel

You’ve Changed Man.

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People seem to have a hard time with change. And recently, I’ve undergone a lot of it. I am becoming a better person. A better Rachel. A better version of me.

My book, Becoming Rachel: The Art of Existing,  channels my journey of change. While I am looking forward to sharing my written account of my life with the world a bit of me is nervous. This book is an outpouring of my heart. Documented experiences of my transformation as a person. With each step along the way I’ve encountered opposition. Becoming Rachel, has been tiresome. More so, rewarding.

I love this cartoon.

The world is full of caterpillars refusing to become butterflies. Out of fear. Out of prejudice. Out of shame.

The world is full of butterflies afraid to use their wings. Stifling their beauty because others don’t understand the beauty of their transformation.

The world is full of experienced butterflies offering support and wisdom. Having already journeyed through the darkness of their cocoon and the expectations of others.  This is the kind of butterfly I want to be. And when I am faced with a bitter caterpillar I choose to reach out in love. I cannot judge them. I used to be that scared little worm. Judgmental, arrogant, ignorant and terrified. That is a difficult place to be. Trust me. I know.

Who ever or what ever or where ever you are….please know that this butterfly loves you. Just as you are. Change is possible. Change is beautiful. Change is the only certainty of life. Let me walk with you. Fly with you. Experience life with you.

The world is full of beautiful people who love you. You are not alone. Becoming you, the truest most natural version of you, is a choice you will not regret. Opposition is an opportunity. Change a challenge. There are those who will not understand. Love them. As the universe loves you. This is living. This is love. This is life.

 

Much love,

Rachel

A year later…{In honor of May 18th, 2012}

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May 18th, 2012 – Moving Day with Jenna!

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One Year Later 🙂

Tomorrow has the potential of being quite an eventful day. So just in case I don’t make it on the interwebs Saturday here’s a celebratory post a couple hours early. Saturday marks the one year anniversary of my personal independence. May 18th, 2012 was the beginning of a beautiful adventure. Jenna and I moved into a small upstairs house apartment in Columbia City. Nothing could have prepared me for the awesomeness of a year that has passed. Twelve months of intense healing, growth and blessing. A lot, I mean a LOT of goodness has come my way. Healthy changes combined with a sense of stability as a person. Words are not enough. Thank You seems empty in comparison to the love so many beautiful souls have freely given. I am in awe, humbled and eternally grateful. In honor of twelve months I offer twelve highlights from this past year:

  1. Developing an attitude of non-attachment towards things. Freeing myself of clutter, chaos and clingyness {a constant balancing act}.
  2. My personal choice to be healthy again. Taking up running, yoga and a clean eating lifestyle.
  3. Yoga – learning to love myself without judgement while pursuing a healthier version of me daily. Jodi and Tiffany. Much love, as always. Namaste ❤
  4. Taking up writing again. Completing my first book of Memoirs -Becoming Rachel: the Art of Existing – Coming Soon!! Terry thank you for teaching me the importance of doing what you love and what you’re good at!
  5. Relishing in relationships with new friends and rekindling former connections once more. My Bob’s girls *MUAH!* “I love yo face!” <—– All of ’em! Erin, Aspen, Veronica, Jasmine, Casey, Abby, KiKi, Kat, Raz, Courtney 🙂 Bethany, Amara and Olivia: I am sooooo blessed to have you in my life once more. Some friendships never end 🙂
  6. Cultivating a close friendship with Ben. Our friendship has blessed me endlessly. Thank you for  challenging me, accepting my ridiculous habits and appreciating my stubbornness. You mean the world to me. Don’t ever forget that!
  7. Trying new things  & facing my fears. Chad and Andi thank you for encouraging me to get out there and experience the world. You’ve presented me with endless opportunities for growth as a person. I love you.
  8. Rebuilding broken relationships. Mama, I love you. I look forward to the deepening of our bond 🙂
  9. Establishing myself as an independent person. Paying my own bills, buying my own groceries, fixing my own shit… all that “Grown up” jazz we take for granted.
  10. Getting crafty 😉 Tanya! Your enthusiasm is contagious!! I love bouncing ideas of that brilliant mind of yours 🙂
  11. Tapping into the love of The Universe. Dennis, Deidre, Darcy; you three come to mind. Thank you for supporting me as a person; staying true throughout all the ups and downs.
  12. Finding that Family is Forever. Michael, Shawn, Malachi, Camren and Colby I love you guys. Victoria, Emily and Drew – you’re my solid team.

This list doesn’t even begin to capture the beauty of this past year. Thank you for being there. Thank you for supporting. Thank you for the hugs. Thank you for the tears. Thank you for the advice. Thank you for the silence. Thank you for the laughs. Thank you for sharing a part of my life. Each and everyone of you. Cheers to another good year ❤

Love and peace,

Rachel

Spring Run For Fun – Winona Lake – May 11th, 2013

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Mama & I waiting at the starting line.

Race day was Saturday in Winona Lake, IN. This time it was the Spring Run For Fun. A day full of firsts for myself, my mother and best friend. My mother signed up for her first Five K Walk; a huge step for her physically due to some health problems involving heel spurs. Ben registered for his first half marathon while continuing to battle a knee injury. And well, as for me, this was to be my first solo Five K Run.

This race was rather personal for me. I came to the starting line with something to prove- to myself that is. Having already run 3.1 miles before I knew the mileage wasn’t the obstacle. My own mind was. My will. The largest muscle to train by far.

Most runners have a buddy come race day. Five K’s are more fun than competitive (though there is plenty of room for both aspects).   Solo runners usually bring some sort of Mp3 player to keep their mind focused during the 3.1 miles. I seriously contemplated this knowing I would be distracted by my own thoughts otherwise. Friday night I decided that if I was going to run solo then I was going to run SOLO. No music, no pacer, no nothing. I had something to prove to myself. That I, could in fact run 3.1 miles on my own. In my own strength. With nothing but my own mind for company.

Bib # 343

Bib # 343

Once the starting gun fired we were off. Unlike my last race, I found myself at the start of the pack. A quarter mile in, as the runners settled into their pace, I ended up smack dab in the middle. Not quite fast. Not quite slow. Somewhere in runner’s limbo.

I was running alone. The fastest runners within eye sight. The slower group growing in distance behind. My mind took over. Distracted by the humidly cold weather attacking my lungs threatening an asthma attack. Six months ago I stopped treating my asthma with prescription drugs; opting for a  more natural approach. This race day was supposed to be sunny, clear and warm. Instead it was cloudy, wet and cold. An asthmatic’s worst nightmare. I knew that if I was going to finish the race controlling my breath was going to be my biggest battle. Controlling my breath meant focusing my mind.

The first thing that came to mind was the alphabet. Silently reciting my ABC’S has gotten me through a lot of difficult times. A silly little song that everyone knows. Takes under thirty seconds to remember. That’s just enough time for some refocusing. In that moment I decided to use the alphabet as the outline for my race. Starting with A, I thought of every person I knew whose name began with that letter. Amy, Amara, Andria, Aimee….each person that had contributed in some way to the person I am today. I thought of former friends and acquaintances, family members, strangers, role models, lovers. Ben, Bethany, Brian, Brandon, Chad, Camren, Colby, Drew, Emily… Relationships of great growth and horrific heartache. Monumental moments. Milestones. People and places. I stayed on each letter until at least one person came to mind. Even if that meant having to think of a fictional character from a book or movie that I loved. Geico, that little gecko! My insurance company….Frieda, grandma frieda….Lynn, Larry, Malachi, Michael, Mom….I kept naming. I kept running. About the half way point I ended up getting a little lost and looped around an area twice adding a bit of mileage to my race. Time was irrelevant. I hadn’t a clue how far I had run or how much time had passed or how fast I was running. It didn’t matter anymore. I was running for me. R, Rachel….I paused on that one for a bit. I’d spent so much time focusing on others and how much they had done for me. I hadn’t ever really thought about all that I’d done for myself. Images of self-

Spring Run For Fun

Spring Run For Fun

growth and healing appeared. I recalled past pivotal choices. Moving out, stepping down from management, writing my book, running, getting a gym membership, coming to yoga, dropping out of school. Each choice a choice I made for me. No one else. ME. There I dwelt for a bit. Reveling in the woman I had worked so hard to become. There was no way I was going to give up. Not just this race. Not just today. Ever. Never. Never ever. Months of hard work had brought me to this point. A lot of hurt had brought a lot of healing. I found another part of myself Saturday. The part left underestimated by most. My will. My determination. My soul.

Life doesn’t get easier. You get stronger.  And look at how strong you are Rachel. You did this. YOU. Shortly after, my mama passed me. We high-fived in passing. A little bit further down the road I passed Ben running the half-marathon loop. Another heartfelt high-five. More half marathon runners passed. All smiling. All shouting encouragement. These people are crazy. They still have another ten miles to go and are hardly out of breath while I am doing my best not to have an asthma attack. Wow. If that’s not inspirational I don’t know what is.  

Official Race Results

Official Race Results

Needless to say, I was blown away by the support. Complete strangers cheering me on. Perhaps seeing a bit of their former self in me. Recognizing that each runner is at a different place. A unique pace. A position all their own. Shawn, Sarah, Sandy….Victoria…. Soon the finish line was in sight. I was certain that I had already been out there longer than my goal time. Then I heard a voice shouting “Beat that forty minute mark!!” Forty minutes?? What the– Sure enough I was going to beat my former race time. I took off hitting the marker at 39:27.

Ben moments after a strong finish.

Ben moments after a strong finish.

Blown away by my improvement. My previous time of 42:00 just a month ago. I took a moment to cool down before running back to find my mom who was still walking the 3.1 miles.

My beautiful mama

My beautiful mama

We walked together for the last half mile. Celebrated a day of first over apples and vitamin water. Then waited at the finish line for Ben to cross with a time of 01:45:00. Beating his goal by 15 minutes with an eight minute mile pace!

We all finished strong.

Each at our own place of improvement.

Proud.

Humble.

Strong.

Couldn’t have asked for a better race day. Thank you for your support and encouragement. A kind word or genuine interest can go a long way. My next race is June 16th. A Five K trail run. Ben’s next race is June 1st. This will be his first marathon in South Bend. Keep reading for updates. And as always, THANK YOU 🙂

 

Rachel

 

May Happenings

Oh, goodness!

So much updating…so little time.

Here it is in a nutshell.

  • I am moving! To a quaint studio apartment above CC Deli across from the courthouse. Get the keys on the 15th. Last day at the current place is June 4th.
  • I am running! My next Five K is this Saturday in Warsaw. I’m racing, my mama is walking and Ben is doing his first 1/2 marathon. Come on out and support us at the Spring Run for Fun on May 11th!
  • I am {still} writing! While I have yet to begin the typing of my manuscript for “Becoming Rachel” I’ve already started writing book #2 😉 Yes, yes, I know. One thing at a time. uhhhh well that’s just not how I function. Get over yo self :p

Much Love,

Rachel

The Mess

A mess
is in the making
secrets
intersecting
and I’m the one
who knows them all
If they could see
the whole picture
maybe
we could smooth it out?
But I’m sworn
to secrecy
with no one
to tell my side
guess I’ll just watch
watch it all happen
Like a mother
who’s warning
has not been heeded
I’ll stand in the background
foreseeing the coming heartache
purposefully powerless
to do a damn thing
Some lessons cannot
be learned
Some lessons must be
experienced
Besides,
I’m taking the brunt
of the pain
It’s true,
this is going to hurt me
more than it hurts you
I’d much rather
take the fall
Than watch you unravel
I am strong
Emotionally
I’ll hold this all together
Listening
to everyone else’s viewpoint
Offering advice
Smiling
because you need me to
Loving
from the sidelines
Believing
Praying
Hoping
That this mess
will somehow bring
growth
Even if we have to walk
through some thorns
to enjoy the harvest

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