Long Distance Relationships

Life, Personal Insight, quarter-life-crisis, Relationships, Travel

I’ve been the one who stayed and the one who went in my current relationship and I now see both have significant challenges and differences. Here is a little tid-bit of where my thoughts have gone on the idea and practice of a LDN (long distance relationship).

June 2014 — The Half that Stayed

What I have recently noticed is that people don’t ever see eye-to-eye when departing from one another. I am still doing all the same things I would normally do, but you aren’t here with me and there’s no chance I will run into you by accident. You on the other hand are in a new place or a maybe familiar place you’re learning to re-love. It’s hard to keep loving what’s left behind when there is so much ahead of you. I can’t be upset about that, people deserve to grow and change and do what they were meant to do. I should be so proud of everyone I know that has left and gone on — I will too one day I just hope I remember to reach out to those who are still a little behind me in their own journeys.

I love my house and work and friends and location for most part, but I also wish to be the one who isn’t so pained by another leaving. Some could call this an abandonment complex, but I think more people experience this than they’d like to admit. It’s much easier to move on when you’re doing new things than when you are sleeping where they slept with you and showering in the same shower you both had that wonderful morning filled with gentle kisses on your shoulders.

You were my normal and now you’re gone. The new normal must be put in place — I have to live my life as if it’s one huge adventure in a location I’ve always known. I need to learn more and challenge myself and be busier than I think I already am. I need to laugh and cry and breathe more fresh air. But when the phone rings I also need to recognize the beauty of that person reaching out to me — I hope they do as well. I don’t want to cramp the new normal on someone else’s adventure — I want to experience special little pieces of it.

February 2015: The Half that Went

Five months after taking off to Europe, I was wondering if we were doing this right; all the blogs said this would be hard and that we would have to make sure we communicated effecively to build trust, but it felt great. We were communicating better than ever, sending cute things whenever we could, sharing moments though pictures and our trust in one another was strong. We had done it, we were the couple that managed long distance better than anyone else we knew. But was it real or were we just living in a fantasy world, with an acutal lack of communication, calling our daily emoji swaps and phone calls here and there a relationship? What defines a romantic relationship over a friendship? Do we have to become just friends in order to survive being apart for so long? It makes sense to think so, knowing how much quality time and physical touch matter in a relationship, two things that don’t exist as much when separated by an ocean.

I can’t believe how difficult the past couple of weeks have been. I’m more confused than ever but that’s neither good nor bad just… confusing. I’m sure you’ve sensed it, and I apologize for that deeply, but I feel really disconnected from “us” lately. I don’t really want to tell you how my day is going because you aren’t here and you can’t understand. I don’t want to ask you about your day either because, frankly, I know what your day was like. I’ve been an idiot begging for more from you just to feel like we’re still romantic, even though I know your nature isn’t that way.

With only three weeks to go, it makes sense that I’m questioning all of this. I wonder what “we” will be like once we’re in the same time zone and can’t express our emotions though emoji stickers (even though I will miss these little endearing symbols) but rather will need to communicate with our body language. I am glad to not have to speak to you over crummy Internet connections when we’re either drunk or almost asleep, but I do wonder if we can do it. Can we learn to include one another when planning our futures and share a group of friends and get through the low-points we haven’t hit yet? Everyone talks about the exciting countdown to see one another again, but why does no one share the nerves that exist around the reuniting?

Probably just a case of the homecoming cold feet, I love you.

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Winter Jazz and Blues

Life, Personal Insight, Travel

I feel the cold. I never used to, but now I feel it in my bones. And the dark. The dark is the worst part of it all. No matter how hard I try to wake up early, something inside me just knows that the sun isn’t actually going to fully rise; it is just going to be a lighter gray kind of day.

Last week, I was wondering why it was so hard to pull myself out of bed and feel excited about the day when it hit me – it’s the winter blues! I had heard of this phenomenon before, but only from my friends who don’t particularly love snow. I’m finally understanding what you were all feeling, sorry guys.

As much we try, it can be quite hard to beat this “winter blues” nonsense, otherwise known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), when everyone and everywhere is also dealing with it. The symptoms of SAD are low mood, lack of interest in life, less desire to be active than wanting to sleep more. Check, check, check and check.

— Winter in the City — 

London is amazing; it has everything you could ever want in a city. It’s both old and new, lively and laid-back, fresh and classic, the list goes on. But… winter is not a time to explore London. It’s not the time to face the elements (just the wind and rain though, no snow) and sightsee or find new places to waste time in. It’s not the time to pretend you can hang with this weather. Rather, it is a time to cozy up with a glass of Malbec and sit by your fireplace melting winter away. If only we were all so blessed to have a fireplace.

Christmas in England was a lovely distraction with festive lights, mulled wine and Christmas markets everywhere you turned, but now the lights are down, the wrapping is put away and we are just left with the bitter, dark cold.

– – –

I know that the real cure is home – mountain towns and snow. Ah I miss the days when I could enjoy winter, with the glistening snow and getting up at 6am not because I had to but because I didn’t want to miss “first-tracks”. I miss apre-skiing and the long drives with my dad to Kirkwood listening to business tapes along the way. I miss running around in the streets at midnight when it started snowing, making sleds out of cardboard boxes and snow angels in whatever we were wearing not recognizing how old we were or were supposed to act.

As strange as it sounds, I miss getting done with work, frosty-hair and red-nosed, then warming up with friends over craft IPAs in cozy Tahoe bars. I miss my portable coffee mug and morning commute through the icy roads.

Back home it didn’t matter if it was cold because we would be skiing or sledding or doing something else that winter offered for fun. It didn’t matter if it was dark because we would be in a cozy mountain-town pub or watching movies with hot chocolate in hand by 5pm.

We lived with the weather rather than against it.

 — Embrace —-

Once I became aware that I was feeling a little SAD, I was able to face it and push myself to enjoy the day anyway. Embrace this time of renewal and reflection. Embrace hibernation. It’s going to be sad and everyone is going to look sad and it is going to be a battle every day.

For now I will embrace winter by enjoying hot yoga, spending time around warm wonderful people, drinking too much tea and indulging in Ben Howard’s sweet sweet voice.

 

— Update 1 — 

After I got the idea for this post, London was sunny and beautiful for five whole days. God has quite the sense of humour.

— Update 2 — 

It’s back to being dark, rainy and bitterly cold.

The Big Leap – First Month away

Personal Insight

As I go about my day, I think about all the things I want to share with the world. Once I get the chance to sit in front of my computer (without working), I am suddenly overwhelmed by all of the possibilities of what I could write from all I’ve seen. Enough! I am just going to let that one go (whew) and start posting whatever comes to mind while writing… let us hope this will be better for our brains eh?

Here we go. Since my first post, a ton has happened. I’ve overcome fears in work, I’ve seen friends from home, I’ve had some “interesting” couchsurfing experiences, met angels, learned to play by myself, and of course had some intense life realizations.

In Work: 

You know when you tell someone something and he or she doesn’t listen to you, then they hear the same advice from someone else and it hits them like lighting and their whole life changes? Yes it’s annoying, but it happens to everyone and we shouldn’t take it personally if it’s not our time for someone to be impacted by the profound words that we called our own first. I had my moment of clarity this week when so much of what I’ve heard over and over again started to finally click.

For example, I’ve realized this week that the part of my job that I don’t particularly love is only temporary, and by working slowly I’m just extending the period of struggle and pain. I have to get through this past of it as fast as possible; work hard now in order to get to the part of work that I really love. I’ve been afraid to work fast because I don’t want to give up my whole life in pursuit of something I fear so much, but I now see that it’s going to be so much easier once I face the fear and only do what I’m afraid of for a little while. Who knows, I may even enjoy it later once I’m used to hearing “no” so many times. Ideas along this line have been told to me seriously my whole life and I’m just now getting it? Jeez, I hope I don’t have to move halfway across the world every time I need to be taught a lesson I already know.

 

I’ve also learned what it means to “be genuine” in our work. Each person has to be authentic in their methods of working, and he or she shouldn’t have to be put in a box called “this is what works”. If everyone stayed in that box then innovation would never happen and we wouldn’t be challenged to find new and better ways to do things. What works for me may not work for the next person. I went to an event that was stellar – it was in a penthouse and was packed full with beautiful people drinking champagne and cheering about how much they loved our business. I was a little uncomfortable and did not fit in at all; it just wasn’t me. It was stellar for that crowd but I can’t carry around high-heels in my backpack and I’d rather climb a mountain than take an elevator that high up. It works for them, and their energy was infectious! But could I pull off an event like that? No way. People wouldn’t feel like I was genuine! So, find what works for you and do it a lot. A lot a lot.

 

In Play:

As one who is used to planning ahead, this trip has been a crash course in “winging it”. So far it’s been… okay; the world hasn’t come crashing down yet so that is good. I am cheating a little though, I plan about a week ahead with the events that I want to go to, then just go with the flow the rest of the time! I find that if I don’t plan anything I end up not doing anything – just wondering what to do and where to go wasting heaps of time. Loosely planning has been nice, it gives me the structure I crave without limiting the opportunity of wherever I am.

 

I think one of the keys to life is learning to enjoy spending time alone. Ha, well lucky me, I get a lot of time to practice this right now. It’s been crazy meeting so many people every day, but every once in a while I get a bit lonely once I’m back on my own after events. Sometimes I worry that I let my happiness rely on people too much, but I’m learning that most people feel that way too. Looking back on the past month, some of the best moments were me by myself enjoying this new life. People watching in Trafalgar Square, handstands in Battersea Park, listening to audio-books while getting lost on foot, and reading outside in the crisp mornings are some of the most refreshing experiences thus far. I really hope I can take this back with me and never stop striving to hang out with myself more.

 

On Home:

It’s been really nice to see some familiar souls from back home. It can be so wonderful sometimes to just be able to talk about familiar topics and the past rather than having to explain your backstory whenever meeting someone new. I really do miss my friends and family and I’m trying to not be embarrassed of that, but I don’t really miss the location of home. People make a home, not four walls (although I’ve had some wonderful four walls to call home in the past few years). I do appreciate the place called home so much more though. I see so many things differently than I did before I left. Some experiences seemed boring or like a burden, but now I see them as opportunities filled with potential joy. We always tell ourselves to enjoy the little things, but we oversee them a lot. Being away from everything has revealed so much to be grateful for that I wasn’t noticing. Honestly, I was becoming resentful of Reno and work and having been in the same place for so long but that was such a waste of energy! I got to do some really great things with some really great people and I hope they know how much I appreciate it all now. So sorry for the belated gratitude.

This is a different experience than a lot of other types of travels. People who see the world are opened to new perspective, but we don’t always understand that everyone’s experiences are different. Studying aboad is much different than backpacking Europe. Backpacking is much different than living out of hostels looking for a job. Looking for a job is different than coming with a job and not having a clue how to build in a new market. We are all going to have different journeys and should respect that of each other. It’s all different. We also shouldn’t put travel in the same category of type of experience. “I want to travel the world” is too broad a statement. How do you want to travel the world?

 

On This New Life:

On this journey I’ve found that it’s okay to just sit in a spot for a few minutes and watch what happens around me. It’s actually acceptable to do this wherever you are, surprise surprise, but for some reason we get too wrapped up in going from place A to B that we don’t experience what happens on the way there. You have to be careful not to sit for too long though, because you will soon attract the wrong people (the stragglers, the friendly-but-lonelies, the crazies, and the a little too aggressives).

 

Being present is the secret. By living in the past or future we don’t notice the boys wearing their school uniform jackets with shorts and cleats on running to school. We don’t see the grandmother in the park fawning over the little gift of a granddaughter. We have to breathe in every moment as it comes and appreciate the turning leaves and folks around us. I’ve seen so many people in love and I don’t know if it’s just my mind driving me crazy or if I am just being opened to the fact that the world is a beautiful place built on human connections (and the desire to be wanted and needed).

 

When we are open to new possibilities, we are definitely given them! I have been asking to be put in front of the people I need to know and it has been totally mind-blowing. I walked into my hostel room to a guy doing yoga and we started chatting about personal growth and  goals and he sent me some of the best advice and information – thanks Owen! I was so lucky to come across such great Couchsurfers in London and find such a friendly group at Hillsong. I’ve been guided to the best Meetup groups for my interests and have been meeting like-minded people that push me to be better. Ah, it’s all working out so well. There really are angels on earth.

 

Until the next time my brain needs to be dumped,

Lucy

 

 

The Big Leap – First Post!

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I did it. I took the leap across the world to find a new adventure. With no debt, leases, or job holding me in one spot, it would have been silly to stay in Reno at this time. Although I already miss the mountains, my people and the cheap nights out, I know I can come back to most of that soon. I’m here with a spirit of “everything that happens to me is the best thing that can happen to me” and it’s been a pretty good guiding force so far.

Saying goodbye was so hard but I can’t admit that to anyone completely. I think I was supposed to be more excited than I was to leave, but I had such a great time getting him all to myself for a few days it was impossible to think of leaving that for so long. It will be fine, everything will always be fine.

I have almost two weeks under my belt so I figured it was time to write. It’s almost like I’m experiencing every emotion all at once – I never know how to actually feel. I find myself constantly shouting, “Ah! It’s so beautiful” one moment and then thinking in my head, “What the hell am I doing here?” the next. I’m so excited and overwhelmed at the same time.

Border Control didn’t like my reasons for entering the UK, but I guess didn’t do a great job explaining why I was here. Maybe everyone was right when they told me I should have a better plan for the trip? Obviously I want to expand my business (licensed in the USA), build a huge network, see all I can see, grow, learn, eat, laugh and cry – the usual stuff, but that wasn’t good enough for them! After being detained for a bit, they pulled me aside and said, “People usually see a place and do what you’re doing for a few weeks, not for a six months. If we catch you working under the laws of the UK we’ll make sure you never step foot here again.” Noted.

Living out of a carry-on duffel/backpack has already been both awesome and challenging. It’s awesome to be able to carry my stuff easily with me, but challenging to be super strategic when I pack up every morning. I guess it’s like a game of Tetris whenever I have to go to a new place.

Hostel life is… interesting. I have stayed in three so far and they’ve all had their fair share of funny moments. From a guy banging on my door for 30 minutes to “come out and play” and making friends with Finns, to the stories of an old, angry Scot working the night-shift, to my window being above a karaoke bar and a roommate demonically snoring like Little Nicky, I sure have had some laughs and some quivers. It’s a bit exhausting moving from place to place and living out of a suitcase but that’s what I signed up for; I think I’ll get more used to it soon. I must say, it was wonderful to get to stay in a real home for a few days in Paris. I’m so much more grateful for nice beds and big bathrooms and walking around space now. Thanks Brandi, I’ll make sure I write you a TripAdvisor review soon ha ha.

It doesn’t feel like I’m so far away from my other life most of the time, and I guess that can be thanks to technology mostly. I still can’t talk to my dad without getting emotional, but I’m also used to spending an unreasonable amount of time with him talking, working and playing outside. Lucky for me I’ll see him in Barcelona in a few weeks. Silly Daddy’s girl.

That’s it for now, but more to come on things like London, Paris, what I brought, wifi hunting, fitting-in, and work life!

-Lucy

P.S Everyone here is named Lucy, I have to get used to that.

Here Now

Life, Personal Insight, PoetryAttempt, quarter-life-crisis

Came here for some peace

Can’t stop can’t sleep
Silence is louder than me
Can’t stop can’t sleep
Can’t. stop. Wondering…
where you are.
Pushing kept me out
But the pulls… the pulls
The confusion, frustration,
Irritation, excuse;
Hating the self hate
You’re my gate-

Way drug.
Once here, once there
Well, Mostly there…
Eh always there.
Fall down get up
Legitimate force
We stay in this course
But it never let’s up
No more falling…
Especially for you
Where are you—–anyways?
Different was the goal
But we’ve gone way past that
No looking back..
Fall, 2011

When Long Hikes Mend Riddled Minds

Life, Personal Insight, quarter-life-crisis

When Long Hikes Mend Riddled Minds

Exploring from right outside my front door.
Items Needed: A bag, notebook, pen, water bottle, apple, light heart and set of headphones.

Challenged to Change

Life, Personal Insight, quarter-life-crisis

This year has already been a whirlwind of adventure. My plan for 2014 to be the “Year of More” is really shaping up nicely, and I couldn’t be more pumped for April.

Destiny?

For some reason, I decided to keep an inspirational photo (one that truly spoke to me) as the background on my phone for a month at a time. With March beginning to come to a close, I started looking for my next picture today. I said goodbye to the above picture, and I realized something spectacular – IT CAME TRUE! I have been so challenged this month, but I have also changed drastically.

Yes, I am still completely struggling with my “post-college, quarter-life” crisis, but I am learning to embrace it with whatever grace I may possess.

I was challenged by everyone around me this month. Whether they were my closest friends, mentors or strangers, they all had something to speak into my life. Some challenged my work choice, others my faith. Some challenged my choice of relationships or lifestyle or the two in combination with each other. Although I was being pushed by everyone around me, I was deeply inspired; they cared about my future and my happiness. I feel so unbelievably loved by the people who continue to push me to my limits, and I don’t think I can ever thank them enough.

Alas! Here are 8 revelations of 2014 thus far… 

  • Life is about the little things: Life isn’t just about the big trips and milestones, it is about that great cup of coffee, and the sunshine on your face. The moment I truly understood this was a mid-morning in the trees of Northstar. I got up early so I could ski before heading down the mountain to work. While listening (somewhat ironically) to London Grammar’s ” Wasting my Young Years” I skied fresh powder lines in the trees by myself. It was absolutely magical, yet it was just a typical Thursday. We all know it is important to cherish the little moments, but make sure you write them down; it’s easy to forget those things when times get tough and we want more than we’ve got. 
  • Think twice before throwing a party: Yep that’s about it. Parties are fun… if you aren’t the host and people actually show up. Don’t be THAT vulnerable.
  • Do something nice for someone different every day: It is not a lie when experts tell us that we can become happier by focusing on the happiness of others. By keeping an eye out all the time for something that a friend would appreciate, I have shifted my focus from on myself to the world around me. When I hear things now, I think of people who want to know what I’m listening to. What I see and experience isn’t meant for me only but rather for me to share. Let us begin to share the love of our daily lives and exposures with the people we care to see grow.
  • We are all lost: No one truly, in the core of their soul, understands his or her purpose completely, yet some of us are enjoying being lost in the right direction. Appreciate where others are in life for we can not understand until we are there one day too. And even if we have experienced the same story as another, they have read and interpreted it differently; be patient with them.
  • Love is shown in many ways that you might not expect:  Many have heard of The Five Love Languages, but may not know how to use it on those that they love. It’s hard enough to decipher which one fits you, how are you supposed to know what your friends, family, mentors, lovers need? This is a difficult realization for me, because it has become a “Boomerang” – the realization came back to me with more questions and concerns than I started with!
  • Even though I believe I’m an adult, the world does not agree: To so many people, I am that young, naive college graduate who still doesn’t understand how the world works and what i’m “in for”. They think that there is so much time. “So much time” to figure out my career, “So much time” before I should settle down. “So much time” until I am somewhat put together and figured out. THERE IS NO TIME PEOPLE. Why does nobody understand? Life is so incredibly short, and we spend so much of it telling others that there is more time than there is. 
  • Relationships are weird: Whether it is family or friends or boys… every relationship has a similar foundation. They come and go, like the seasons of the year – the difference is, you never know what season is next. We can hope to become the best versions of ourselves and be the best of friends to others, but it isn’t only what we do that determines a relationship. Some are based on clubs, status, accessibility, familiarity, charity… list goes on. Try to remain your best self along with caring for others on a daily basis. You will still lose many friends, but growth is a funny thing that way.
  • Make sure to say “Good Morning” to the honey bees:  This really sums up the year. I was staying with one of my mentor’s recently. One morning we decided to drink our tea on her back patio. There was an incredible cherry-blossom tree that was beginning to bloom, but that was all I saw it as. Paulette’s face lit up as she said, “Listen, do you hear them buzzing?” The tree was filled with honey-bees working their magic. They were too busy to notice us, but Paulette gently started singing “Good Morning” to the working bees. My heart completely melted and I realized that I hadn’t been giving enough gratitude to the world. Remember to respect what is around you living or not, and appreciate the little things 🙂

Back in the Saddle! Fitting for this West Coast girl?

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Image 

Hello you beautiful people 🙂 

It’s officially my delayed start to this new year! March 1st seems like a good date to really start things strong this year, right? 
January and February have been incredible months of growth and renewal; I am so grateful for the people around me that continue to challenge me. Thank you, thank you, thank you. 

This blog will now also be going through a time of growth and renewal. Since I am no longer in University, I want to shift the focus of the blog to be on things that I am working on currently and super passionate about. 

– Health 

– Wealth 

– Happiness 

– Leadership 

Also, I have declared 2014 the Year of MORE! So here are some more things I will be focusing on in the renewed blog 🙂 

– More FUN!

– More Fitness!

– More Finances!

– More Focus! 

– More Freedom!

 

I can’t wait to push myself, so keep me accountable guys! Get ready for lots of cool information on the previously listed topics! 

I still want to be very close to the original mission of the blog, but I won’t be only based in the Reno-Tahoe area anymore 🙂 This girl is a jet setter now ❤ 

Lots of love on this wonderful Tuesday! 

 

-Lucy

Weekend Link Roundup 5/10-5/12

Events, Link Roundup, Local Events
Last year's cook-off. This year will be even bigger!

Last year’s cook-off. This year will be even bigger!

  • The Virginia City Chili Cook-off, Chili on the Comstock is this weekend! The whole main street is closed and tents of chili vendors fill the the space. This event acts as the kickoff to summer in Virginia City. The air will be warm and filled with the smell of chili spices. It is ALSO the Inaugural Fireball crawl. Yes you read that correctly, Virginia city is hosting a crawl for the famous cinnamon whiskey. The chili and fireball are all available from 10am Saturday to 4pm on Sunday! 
  • Justin is climbing the ranks! My friend will be HOSTING tonight’s comedy show at Reno Tahoe Underground. Show starts at 7!
  • It is the last weekend before graduation so brace yourself for things to get super busy! Enjoy this weekend as a more laid back one, because everyone is (or should be) studying for finals right now instead of partying.
  • The Crystal Bay Club will be hosting the Head for the Hills concert on Saturday! This is a free show but is 21+. Head for the Hills is a small band with a very folky sound.
  • The Shins will be performing at Mont Bleu in South Lake Tahoe this Saturday. Doors open at 8pm. I won’t be attending this event because I was super disappointed with the Shins’ performance last year in Reno. The opening act, Gardens and Villa, was more fun to watch and the band actually respected the audience. The Shins just played their music and ignored everyone; I was so sad and I won’t go to another concert of theirs.
  • Mother’s Day festivities! Check out this post to learn more about what to do with your amazing mother this weekend.

Mother’s Day is right around the corner – what do you have planned?

Curated Content, Local Events, Shared Information

The Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitors authority (RCVA) has helped us all start brainstorming Mother’s Day activities in the Reno area! Here are some fun events they have laid out that you can take your mom to.

Mom's on the Run! Thank you Elissa Ji for the picture.

Mom’s on the Run! Thank you Elissa Ji for the picture.

I thought it would be a good idea to not only share local events for this special day, but also some tips I found online to help you show how much you care.

  • Mother’s Day Central gives tips on awesome gestures you can show her this day
  • The Huffington Post has started to compile articles and ideas as well to help you succeed in making your mom feel special on the 12th.