Three Little Words

I miss you.

I’d like to say those words to someone and mean it again. Not in an obsessed “I can’t live without you” kind of way, but in a way that means, “I care about you, and I wish you could be with me right now for this particular little adventure. It’s fun now, but it could be better with you around.” Not a lonely “I miss you,” but something richer.

What an odd concept. To miss missing someone.

Granted, I am still not quite sure if I can afford any more of my trust to any one single man. I would like to, but he should probably prove trustworthy first before we move into this “I miss you” business.

But, I hope I can give someone that trust. I hope I can soon. It’s been a long journey over the years through dysfunction and abuse of trust. I just want something good, something real, something mutually and wholly wonderful. And I believe I deserve that. (He deserves it, too.)

Because I’d like to know that all that missing eventually leads to a great big bear hug and that ever-present short girl dream of happily snuggling my face into that man’s chest. And hopefully it comes together with me finally saying, “I missed you,” in that muffled voice that only turns up when I refuse to move my face from that aforementioned chest.

I deserve to be with someone I miss. And the perfect partner deserves to be missed by me.

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You Don’t Know Anything, So Stop Listening to Yourself

You Don’t Know Anything, So Stop Listening to Yourself via HelloGiggles.com.

Listen to your gut. Fight your instinct.

I’ve been sitting on this post for months upon months upon months. It just sat there with a link to the article. It’s been in the back of my mind since making that scary leap from graduate school to the Real World v.2.0.

“Your instincts are trained habits that you created somewhere along the way. And they are usually just what you’re comfortable with. And some of us are comfortable being unhappy, being taken advantage of, being walked all over, ignored, overlooked, under respected, being made to settle. Your gut tells you the truth, it tells you when something is off. It tells you what no one else will.”

There was a lot of that, carried over from goodness knows how many years of the same old bad habits. I’m trying to break that now. I’ve been doing so much to challenge myself, to step out of this comfort zone, and to make a stand for the person I want to be and the life I want to have.

Being intentional in my goals towards a fitter, healthier self has helped a lot. CrossFit still makes me anxious day after day (or WOD after WOD, I should say), but I still go. Even if my gains aren’t phenomenal like a lot of my friends’, it’s still personal progress. It’s still my victory.

Stepping outside of the comfort zone in advising pushes me to be a better professional–and to have more of an impact on my students’ lives. It’s not easy for me to ask those follow-up questions of, “What could you have done to be more successful this quarter?” and “How will what’s happened this quarter affect your next quarter here?” and so forth. But when I do, I see the wheels turning. I see those reflective pieces start to come together for my students. And I see again why it is what I do matters, and why I simply do what I do.

Being new-ish to a city is tough. It has its own challenges, but I am still making that transition happen. Interestingly enough, my instinct is to move on to the next place quickly. But I think this time, I’m going to stay. Since college, I haven’t lived in one city for more than two years. In fact, I haven’t made it two full years in one place since leaving Bellingham. As I’ve said before, I think I’m ready to put down some roots in Portland.

And that scares me to no end.

I need to try this, though. I need to give myself this chance to stabilize. It will give me the chance to establish a real home again, to become a part of a community, and to keep on this pattern of growth. Growth doesn’t have to mean running from place to place. It doesn’t mean I have to give up that love of travel and exploration, either.

You bet these next few years will be full of mini-breakdowns and embarrassments. (Heck, I hit myself in the face multiple times on my exceedingly low-rep WOD today–however, I completed the workout at the prescribed weight, so I’m going to take that as a victory. [That’s part of the new philosophy moving forward–unless I know the prescribed weight is physically dangerous to me, I will attempt it, even if it means I’m slow and I’m dead-last each time.])

And that’s all okay. Instinct says it’s not, but I’ve got that gut feeling that things will be just fine.

Happy Friday, everyone.

I can see everything from here.

Ten Things That Happened to Me When I Began CrossFit

Alternate title: “That Time I Joined a Cult and Liked It.”

I was inspired by “Ten Things That Happen to You When You Begin CrossFit.”

1. I quickly stopped doubting the CrossFit philosophy. I had heard the hype, seen the photos of ice bathes and torn hands and bruises, and been annoyed with all the PR and WOD status updates. So, naturally, I figured it was another fad, and I viewed the whole community warily. Of course, I’m the type of person that tries to subscribe to a “don’t knock it until you try it” philosophy, so I finally went and tried it out.

After my first Workout Of the Day (WOD), I could barely walk for the next four days. It was absurd, but I hadn’t been pushed like that in ages. Something clicked, and I eventually went back for a second session. And a third. And…

2. I re-discovered the power of a team. I lamented a lot in grad school about how the lack of a team made working out incredibly difficult for me. I missed having my dance and cheer teammates around, and I missed the push and pull that comes with trying to better yourself while trying to keep up with others. At CrossFit HEL, I discovered teammates who were willing to get to know me and willing to cheer me on through the modifications and the scaling and the self-doubt. They keep me coming back each day.

3. I underestimated myself. I started at zero. Square one. Nothing. I was so incredibly out-of-shape and the images of CrossFit women who are cut and strong beyond belief didn’t help. Now, as I tackle each workout, I know that there will be challenges I run into. I know that I’ll still be scaling and modifying for a long time, but I am also realizing that I underestimate what I can already do.

In the past few weeks, I realized that my Grace benchmark time has dropped significantly and the weight I used had shot up significantly. I could be doing more in that case. I had a complex surrounding box jumps, and all of a sudden, last Saturday, I was hitting 20″ box jumps. I also hit my first double-unders (jump rope–two twirls, son) that same day–after whipping the jump rope into my shins multiple times the previous Tuesday.

Understanding that I’m balancing this underestimation with trying not to injure myself is going to be key. I’m already starting to push my limits a bit more, and the mental breakthroughs are already astounding.

4. I was scared. Period. Scared of being laughed at. Scared of hurting myself. Scared of not being accepted. But I found a team that supports me, and that made a world of difference. I tell people thinking about starting CrossFit, “You really need to find a team and a trainer that you mesh with.” Be intentional in seeking out the folks that will see you at your most defeated. Worked for me.

5. Then I wasn’t scared–but just nervous before hitting the floor. I did my first CrossFit Games WOD while I was in Las Vegas, and I was nervous. A judge would be watching me, I was going to an out-of-town box, my regular trainer wasn’t there, and I had just previously maxed my overhead snatch at 55lbs. the week prior. I had butterflies to the extent that I thought it was cheerleading try-outs all over again.

I’m usually anxious before any WOD because everything is different, and it’s constantly a competition with myself. From what I’ve heard, this anxious feeling doesn’t fade for some. I’ve always been anxious before my biggest and most important performances, and historically speaking, good things have come from those. I like the rush, even if it’s stressful beforehand.

6. I started thinking about fitness and wellness even more holistically. I am more conscious about what I eat because it helps me perform better, and when I perform better, I feel better. When I feel better, I am happier. When I’m happier, I’m more productive. I’m more dynamic. I’m not always going to “be on” every day, and CrossFit probably isn’t going to be a magic bullet for my love life, but I am incorporating much more of my individual wellness pieces into a cohesive structure.

7. Any ego I has been completely destroyed. If I thought I was the best or better than anyone at any point, that’s gone. I’m a fairly humble person to begin with, so CrossFit has been great for keeping me in check. There is always something to strive towards in this plan. That said…

8. I take ownership of my shortcomings–and my accomplishments. I know the things I cannot do yet, I know the things I can do better, and I know the things I have learned to do better. Maybe I can’t hit Rx’d WODs at this point in time, but I’m sure doing more than I did when a typical week was maybe two nights of yoga and lots of beers.

9. My arms came back! Enough said. (Although they are shot from last night’s WOD.)

10. I began to establish a home in Portland, OR. Does it sound funny to center my new universe around a gym? Not after reviewing the other nine reasons.

I love the area I’ve landed in. I’m almost one year in, and I can say that this transition out of grad school is going much better than my transition out of undergrad. I have many challenges to face and tackle yet, but in being intentional and continuing to reflect, I’m finding that things are taking on deeper and richer meaning–and that has made a world of difference.

Coming Up Soon

I’m in Vegas for the 2013 ACPA Convention currently. That said, blog posts will be spotty.

However, a friend shared this today, and as I am slowly creeping up on my thirties, I thought I would further share. My friends routinely tell me that they love my crazy twentysomething life, but secretly I wonder if I’m setting myself up for a conflicted decade in just a few years. (Granted, those nagging feelings aren’t that cumbersome because, hey, I love my life, too.)

Don’t Rush Through It

I’ve been seeing posts here and there about a guide that will make transitions easier. Part of it is self-esteem, part of it is tackling demons that hold one back, and overall, it’s a nice little motivating package. And of course, the author is making money because it’s life coaching.

Here I am, blogging away about all the transitions that I experience, and it’s all at a monetary loss (e.g., paying for the domain, custom fonts, etc.). Granted, I’m not really giving anyone any advice on what to do with a transition. I’m letting anyone who happens across this come up with his or her own conclusions on how to best tackle life.

All in all, though, I’m not going to trade in my catharsis to give young adults advice on how to be sparkly and wonderful through all of life’s transitions. I’m not going to hand you a seven-step guidebook to tackling your fears. It’s not my niche. I’m going to keep on blogging about my misadventures in dating, my wanderlust, my CrossFit forays, and higher education. If I never author an official autobiography, at least I’ll have my blog.

Anyway.

You’ve probably noticed that the past two weeks have been spotty in terms of blog posts. Even today’s post isn’t on the correct day. Well, here’s what’s up:

– I went to Georgia for an awesome work conference/institute.- I came home and was very productive at work.
– Then, I hurried from work on Thursday night to catch a flight to LA. As much as I hate the Pacific Northwest’s rain, I will have to say that sacrificing leaving work at 6PM, driving 20 minutes to the international airport, and being through security by 6:35PM will be hard to leave if I ever choose to.
– I got a free mixed drink because Southwest knows how to celebrate Valentine’s Day.
– Once at LAX, I waited nearly an hour for the dumb hotel shuttle to come pick me up. I’m really sorry, hotel front desk guy, that you had to hear me in full tired hysterics more than once.
– Why was I in California? Good question. I was there to attend Gallifrey One, the annual North American celebration of Doctor Who. In a nutshell, it was awesome.
– I also had the chance to meet up with one of my best friends in the world for his birthday, in which we took a limo around town. We stopped by his old stand-by sports bar, an urban taco restaurant, the Hollywood Bowl Overlook, and House of Blues on Sunset. I unfortunately took some Advil on an empty stomach and felt terrible for awhile, but I powered through. Also got to meet up with my former director and one of my colleagues for a mini-reunion!
– Sometime on Saturday, I started to catch a cold (I also powered through that on Saturday night, but even with all the Vitamin C, it managed to turn into a full-blown cold). I’m still sitting around in my jammies because it–combined with air travel–has knocked me out.

Let’s go back to Gallifrey One, though! I can talk about how awesome it was for just a second.

My friend and I attended the convention. There were right around 3,600 attendees this year, many of which were cosplaying (e.g., wearing Doctor Who-themed fancy dress). I only cosplayed on Saturday, and I have great ideas for upcoming costumes. The convention featured actors and supporting players from all realms of Doctor Who (classic series, new series, audio series, etc. and so forth) in panels. There were fan tables and autograph halls, live action DW improv, and just all sorts of nerdy goodness.

Highlights from the convention included random conversations. For example, there was meeting two of the directors, Saul Metzstein and Douglas MacKinnon, while waiting for table at the bar, and discussing how the life of a director has so many transferable lessons to the world of higher education administration. Then, we went on our merry ways and enjoyed some beers and hockey.

We also happened to literally run into Shaun Dingwall as we were waiting for the escalator. We had a quick exchange about cosplaying and how I “must be melting!” wearing a pleather jacket. Genuinely nice, funny guy.

Oh, and the Inspector Spacetime (a.k.a., Untitled Web Series About a Space Traveler Who Can Also Travel Through Time) crew were hilarious. There’s something wonderfully nerdy about meeting the minds behind a web series based on a 15-second clip of a TV show which is clearly a reference to Doctor Who and then got its own internet fame as fans latched on and ran with the alternate universe (phew).

The panels were, to borrow a phrase, fantastic. There was insight into what it’s like to be a part of Doctor Who, as well as some academically-minded panels on female companions and their depictions, as well as Shakespeare (a good number of actors in DW are also very experienced in the world of Shakespeare productions). Many of the panels were just full of good laughs, like when Nicholas Briggs and Nicholas Pegg (the voice of the Daleks and one of the Dalek operators, respectively) discussed what it’s like doing a run-through of Dalek scenes. Or when Dan Starkey (a.k.a., Strax) was asked if he makes it a pastime to hurl insults at people and if he remembered any of the Sontaran Christmas carols. Or whenever Ian McNeice got a hold of the microphone. It was lovely. And listening to British and Scottish accents all day isn’t the worst thing that can happen to a lady.

Throughout all types of transitions, one must remember to never lose that sense of wonder. As I stood atop the Overlook this past weekend, I felt grateful for the life I live. It may be a life in which The Doctor isn’t real and that little blue box is just a story, but it’s a life that can be just as fantastical and wonderful as long as I allow it to be.

Two Doctors and the TARDIS

Ten and Nine, respectively.

Southern Exposure

This past Wednesday, I took off for Savannah, Georgia. I was headed to the NACADA Administrators’ Institute where I would join the advising divisional managers at my school to draft up some plans to do what we do better.

The trip was one of the most fun I’ve had, and that says quite a bit. From watching Lincoln and Argo on the flight over, to playing tourist in historic downtown Savannah, to finding myself at a country bar talked into riding a mechanical bull (a.k.a., “The Buffalo”), to playing spokesperson as we outlined our detailed plan of action, to making newly-friends… it was truly re-energizing.

I took back some of that new energy today, trying my best to draw out some more depth in my conversations with students today. Our advising model may not be perfect and we definitely have some challenges that come with growing pains, but even though I was dead tired (thanks to an all-day travel day yesterday), I got through it.

I’ve got to keep this up, keep this momentum going. Yes, that sounds like a good plan of action.

Again by the Atlantic

Again by the Atlantic

Maybe

Maybe

Maybe it’s not me who’s missing my opportunities for true love.

Maybe it’s you.

Maybe it’s not me who’s running and untethered and a feather on the wind.

Maybe it’s you.

Or maybe it’s both of us.

And maybe it’s impatience and subjective perspectives of time slowly wearing me down.

Where are you, Love? Where are you off to now?

(Could I interface with you?)