This One Thing

You guys. I started writing this post almost two months ago.

I’ll never understand how the sweltering heat and humidity of a southern summer make the days feel like they’re moving in slow motion but the weeks fly by… how is 2017 already over half-way over?

——–

Does anyone remember the scene in Garden State with Natalie Portman’s character, Sam, does a weird little spazzy dance and says the following:

Garden State (2004)

 

This is your one opportunity to do something that no one has ever done before and that no one will copy throughout human existence. And if nothing else, you will be remembered as the one guy who ever did this. This one thing.

When’s the last time you did something, expressed something, moved and grooved, painted, blurted, sang, jumped, or danced or created just ‘cuz you have something uniquely and profoundly YOU for you by you and because of you? Something or some moment no one can take away because you gave it life and you, ONLY you, had the ability to do so?

And not just the ability? But the drive, the audacity, the life experience, the naive hope, the push, the call to do it?

———-

It may be the afternoon daydreams of the lunchtime glasses of rosé in an airy cafe or the perpetual fog of humidity, but it’s a weird thought that’s been on my mind recently. Not sure where it came from, but embarrassingly, I have some idea.

Y’all, I put a lot of pressure on myself to come back from my Euro-Trip (that was in mid-May, might I remind you – how has 2 months gone by so quickly?!) refreshed, changed, and ready to TALLY-HOOOO! into 2nd half of 2017. And, admittedly, I’ve wanted to don my over-sized cotton underwear and hide in a corner with a handle of gin and package of Oreos more than ever.

Being at a cross-roads with my business in the last few months and trying to transition it towards things that feel full and more inline with my personal skills, values, and desires has been daunting, if not a little terrifying (okay, a lot terrifying). Throw in the current workload and commitments that require my immediate attention and the surmounting anxiety with wondering if I’m taking the best steps in my new direction leave me feeling heavy and weird and never feeling like I can do anything “right.” I hoped I’d feel more refreshed coming back to tackle that; but instead, I was ready to jump right back on a plane (even if the airlines’ computer system completely crashed and left me stranded in Paris an extra night). I’ll hide in an Airbnb with my oversized underwear with a handle of gin and stroopwafels over there, a-thank-yoooou.

“Gin salad” in Amsterdam

2017 so far has been a year of break-throughs, breakdowns, heartbreak, and CAN-A-GIRL-CATCH-A-BREAK moments galore. Empty promises and major disappointments. I have succumbed to the proverbial traveling salesmen and believed in the snake oil more often than I’d like to admit… and allowed places and people that were once full of joy and fulfillment to be cast in a shade of resentful gray.

Saying good-bye to my favorite little furry bud was just the giant pickle in the crap-sandwich of it all.

Anyone who knows me for 5 seconds or more knows I barrell full force into whatever it is I feel I have to do. They also know I hold on to that idea that something magical is always possible and every decision and opportunity can and just-very-well-might lead to it, even if it takes a few drinks to remind myself of it. And because I want so badly to feel and experience everything so big and fiercely, I often let my bedazzled dreams cloud my judgement. It’s not naivete, I think (I hope?). It’s a force I have yet to describe – yet that journey to understanding it all and harnessing it for good is what gets me up in the morning (that, and the 8 cups of coffee I can’t function without).

I feel like I need to apologize that this isn’t a “Top 10 Awkward Moments I Had Abroad” or “Best Places to Exhaust the Waistband on Your Stretchy Pants in Amsterdam” post (but if you’d actually read that, I will write it). And I hope I never come across ungrateful for being in our wonderful little island community because goodness knows I’m thankful every day for it. Often, I’m even more thankful for the people who have done nothing but support my weird and wild attempts to find out what the heck I’m actually supposed to be doing here… including my handsome highschool sweetheart for who, after 15 years, still embraces the crazy and encourages me to seek happiness in the small moments.

Friday night beach walks with this hunk

I’m thankful to myself for leaving little nuggets along the to remind myself it wasn’t all bad, like printing off sweet emails from clients or taking time to order photos of favorite shots or special times. In fact, some moments of 2017 thus far were downright frickin’ fantastic. And you guys: I still pinch myself that I did get to travel abroad and explore cities some people only dream of with my bestest friend of 10 years AND observe her sweet little family trying to find out just how they fit in their community, too – and, boy, did it inspire me to enjoy our journey here a lot more. (And for crying out-loud, I got to see the childhood home of Audrey Hepburn! And drink rosé with lunch without any dirty looks!)

Paying tribute to the woman that brought us together in Brussels

Literally rosé ALL DAY in Paris

And by and large, my clients have been the sweetest, most fun people to work with, with good hearts and the best of intentions (and just #beautifulpeople to boot, MY GAH)… like I want to print and hang their photos on my walls because I feel so involved and obsessed with their stories. (And again, they’re really ridiculously good-looking.)

So here’s to looking at the latter-half of 2017, returning to my initial word of responsibility and giving myself the space to find that uniquely, uninhibited opportunity to create and to experience from a good, good place – whether I’m remembered for that One Thing or not.

Better yet, I’ve found it’s much more fun to get out of your own head and create space for others to discover and express their One Thing. And I hope that’s part of my bigger plan.

More importantly, I hope it involves lots of Oreo. Maybe gin. Oversized cotton underpants optional.

Hugs & High Fives,

C

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