Routinely

I haven’t gone.

I used to tend to this blog regularly, making time to write and record my thoughts and musings several times a week. Without too much hesitation, I let you all in on my vulnerability, shortcomings, and loneliness; my excitement, achievements, and humor; and sometimes, just my nonsense.

Then I decided to put my energy elsewhere. I moved, I changed jobs, I met someone, I traveled, I adjusted my workout priorities, I traveled some more–in other words, life happened, and I had more time to spend being present rather than being reflective.

I miss writing, and it still feels good to put things down in written words, but things are good. They aren’t perfect. There are still days where I stress about what to do with my life, but as my colleague said yesterday, maybe the question I should be asking is, “What’s next?”

My life has been anything but linear and predictable. I still stress about uncertainty and the future, but that’s who I am. I still lament about being athletically talentless, but I’m having a fine time working on my weaknesses.

Also, I love my partner very much, but I leave my disastrous dating stories up here if only to serve as a reference for others who might be feeling the way I once did. Maybe it will help someone, after all.

I leave my projects and artifacts here to showcase where I came from as a graduate student and as a professional. I currently do not work in higher education, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that I’m able to research, analyze, compose, and assess.

I still dream of traveling, and I’m sure I’ll still recollect my journeys in one way or another–through writing or photos on various platforms. There’s so much to see and do still.

This all makes it sound like I’m closing down the blog. It’s not going anywhere, but I might, and I might not record it here. I’m not sure what’s next for my personal record-keeping. Maybe it’s just a layout change; maybe it’s a new site. We’ll just wait and see.

In the meantime, don’t wait up for me. There’s a world out there to explore.

 

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Autumntime

“Today and tomorrow are going to be the last 70-degree days in Seattle,” JD said this morning, before leaving for his day-trip to Portland. Ten years of living on the wet side of the Cascade Mountains taught me to take advantage of every sunny day, and as such, I chose to get breakfast and coffee near Green Lake, then walk the entire loop. It was one of my rest days from lifting and high-intensity work, so I spent this morning watching the marine layer slowly burn off.

Green Lake, Seattle, WA

Green Lake, Seattle, WA

It was a good morning.

As some of you probably noticed, this summer marked a decline in my social media presence. My blog, Twitter, and even Facebook have been seemingly neglected. The many issues I was processing and documenting for about six years on this blog have evolved, and much of it doesn’t seem to warrant the same exposure as before.

The uncertainty of “what do I do after college?” has morphed into an openness for any number of pathways. For the meantime, I anticipate continuing on in my advising role, taking on new responsibilities with the new academic year. I would like to see where things go in this role; it’s been exciting and challenging, and it would seem things will continue to be that way. What the long-long-term looks like for me will depend on many things.

Balance still remains important to me, and in the past year or so, investing my energy in the people, activities, and interests I care about–as well as my own self-care–has become even more important, but only those people that recognize and affirm my value will continue to get in-depth investment from me. I spent a lot of time letting toxic things into my life, they took a lot of my time and resources, and I got tired of it. I took a step back and got myself in order. The person I am now is one that I am pretty happy with, and being around people that are appreciative of that is hard to describe. It’s like there’s a special glow to those friendships, whether they are many years old or relatively new; there is something special about the people around me, and I want them to know that. And I want myself to remember that she is special, too, which is why taking the time to renew myself and reflect on where I’m at and commit to challenging myself is also part of the balancing equation.

There are still some things that bother me. Uncertainty is one of them. However, I’m becoming better at seeing things from multiple angles and understanding that there are many ways for me to lead a fulfilling, happy life; the biggest driver for me will probably be that magic word, “balance.” What that looks like in the future will evolve, and I am okay with that. Life can be good, and life can stay good. This is the lesson I’m learning. I still don’t quite trust the Universe fully, because I spent a long time hurting, but I’m getting there.

***

I keep getting distracted from this post because I have been baking paleo pumpkin muffins, and my kitchen smells quite autumn-like. Note: I still have a disdain for artificial pumpkin goods and the Pumpkin Spice Latte, which I won’t really go into here because I don’t have the resources for it. I’m patiently awaiting the appropriate time to start guzzling eggnog lattes and downing apple pie like there’s no tomorrow, but I digress.

***

CrossFit is still going well. Gearing up for another competition, which will be a mixed-pairs competition with JD. I’m looking forward to it, as it will be his first competition overall and my first co-ed team competition, and the custom matching t-shirts I ordered are pretty slick, too. He’s got some serious CrossFit talent, along with amazing positive energy. It’s hard to keep up, although I try my best.

I’ve hit some new PRs in the past few months, including new deadlift and power clean PRs. With beginner gains a thing of the past, now I’m working on refining technique and picking up new skills (and then refining those). There’s an endless smorgasbord of things to learn, and not enough hours in the day. Going to the gym has become a routine, and days off are necessary, but they leave me anxious to get back in and work.

I PR'd my deadlift at 250lbs.!

I PR’d my deadlift at 250lbs.!

I’m sad to say goodbye to the summer; then again, I always am. I’m an “endless summer” kind of person, yet the Pacific Northwest keeps me here for some odd reason or another. However, I’m looking forward to what the autumn has in store this time around.

Seattle autumn sunset

Seattle autumn sunset

Oh, and for the record, the muffins turned out okay.

Hawk Yeah.

Just a short post tonight in light of the recent Seahawks Super Bowl victory…

The “Seattle sports fan neurosis,” as a friend of mine said online, is real. Just look at this article, “Mediocrity, Followed by Bitter, Soul-Crushing Disappointment.” Growing up in the Northwest, you develop a type of defensive pessimism about the teams you love, which I think has bled into my personal attitudes about my own potential, whether that’s academic or in romance or whatever.

But then… a season like this happens. A season that really exemplifies a “Tell me I won’t” defiance. A season that showcases a city (and a region’s) pride in something that maybe is a metaphor for all of us in this grey little corner of the US.

Granted, I cautious of becoming too boastful, too prideful, too optimistic–but even so, the reward in challenging the naysayers has been so much more than a shiny trophy. Let that be the guiding principle from now on.

Go on. Tell me one more time that I won’t do it. That I can’t do it.

It seemed to work for these guys.

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(Sadly, none of these photos belong to me. They were all shared via the Hawk Nation Facebook page. I was working all day and couldn’t catch the parade in-person, unlike many of my other friends. Jealousy!)

The Best Summer Ever

“Here’s to the best summer ever.”

That’s the mid-year theme I’ve come up with. And why not?

I spent the solstice and the following weekend with so many people, reminded that there is so much to be said for the magic in friendships. I got to see two of my closest friends whom I’ve known for nearly a decade now, as well as friends who are newer and full of surprises. I even got to make new friends. We confirmed this with a Facebook message reading, “We are friend [sic]?” “We are friends!”

I got to share my current city with my friends, as well, and it was the perfect combination of relaxation and chaos–something we seem to have perfected over the years. It’s always a treat to share something like Pine State Biscuits with your friends and watch their reaction. It’s also fun to share my CrossFit gym with my visiting friends, not just for our set-up and programming but also for the people.

This summer is dedicated to more moments like those found this weekend, whether those moments are in Portland, Seattle, Wenatchee, or any other city I might find myself. So, just get ready for a lot of bad jokes, good food, questionable dance moves, and real good music.

Here’s to the best summer. Ever.

Days of Summer

Such Great Heights

What a weekend.

It was the first really sunny weekend this year, and it started out with happy hour on Friday. We celebrated the end of another successful quarter in advising, and took the time to swap funny stories and enjoy some good food. After a bit of socializing, I headed north to Issaquah. I made decent time, although I had to make about a two-mile loop near Bellevue because I couldn’t merge onto the I-90 East ramp due to, like, twenty cars and a semi that were going way too slow. Oh well. What can you do other than whine about it on your blog?

On Saturday morning, three of us went to CrossFit 425 where–surprise!–CrossFit Games workout 13.4 was programmed in as part of the morning WOD. Part. I had attempted 13.4 at the prescribed weight, 95lbs., on Thursday, and I hadn’t even broken into double digits. (I did, however, set a personal record for clean-and-jerk, and I did hit my first set of toes-to-bar that night.) So, because I had already done my Rx’d attempt, I scaled and went quite light, down to 65lbs. Then there was more after that first 7 minutes. We did some jump-roping, and some push-ups, and some kettlebell work. And there was a short 400m run followed by as many burpees as possible (if you finished the run in under two minutes, which I did; I got two burpees in).

After my friends finished killing it during the competitors’ 13.4 attempt, we spent some time in the sun. Yes, we just stood outside the gym in our sports bras and pants. We made Hubsly take some pictures, too. We’re quite attractive.

Seriously, attractive.

Seriously, attractive.

After CrossFitting and eating way too much frozen yogurt (and mini peanut butter cups), I made my way to Ellensburg. My aunt and uncle celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with a get-together of family and friends. This aunt is my dad’s little sister, and I love her and my uncle to pieces. I surprised everyone by showing up, primarily because I wasn’t even sure if I would make it, but I did! My half-sister was there, too, so it was fun to catch up with her. We all went to Cousin Jim’s after the party for cornbread and chili. I had a bunch of homemade cheese crackers (well, they’re more like cheese cookies), which also were not anywhere close to paleo nor clean. But they were delicious and worth it. Family time is some of the best time in my world; I’m a lucky one.

Aunt Mac and Uncle Don

Aunt Mac and Uncle Don

After stuffing myself stupid on chili and cheese cookies, I drove back to Issaquah. A few of us congregated at Lot No. 3 where the guys were working the bar and slingin’ drinks like they are known to do. There was a lot of popcorn thrown that night. Apparently, I’m twelve.

Easter Sunday suddenly showed up (about four hours after I finally went to bed), and four of us decided a hike was in order. (Well, actually, we were invited on Saturday, and I woke up fifteen minutes before we were supposed to leave, and there was really going to be no backing out of the deal, plus it was super-sunny out and as a PNW’er, I had to take advantage.) Mt. Si was the destination, a four-mile ascent to the top of the hill. My legs burned for a good portion of the hike, primarily my calves, but I endured.

And then, there was this:

Looking out over Bellevue and Seattle (in the distance)

Looking out over Bellevue and Seattle (in the distance)

Summit 2

That's Mt. Rainier.

That’s Mt. Rainier.

Sometimes, you just have to take the holy day outside and near the sun. Sometimes, you just have to go outside and remind yourself, I’m alive. Sometimes, you just have to be unstoppable.

Hope you all had a fabulous weekend, friends. More goodness to come!