The important dynamics of a varied friendship group

Ok – I’ll admit it… that title doesn’t sound like me. But it’s something I’ve spent the past few moments mulling around in my head and I just decided to go with it. In the past month that I’ve put together my new commercial studio space (which by the way – i’m 95% done with and it’s AMAZING!) I’ve met so very many of my sister’s friends, plus people in the building, and some of my friends have come to visit as well…. it’s been a month of PEOPLE. 🙂 And I say that with delight and joy – because after spending so very much time in my home with the quarantines, this new energy has truly been a delight for me and is helping when it comes to giving me inspiration with my comics.

Something I’ve learned this month tho, is that it’s so important to have a well-rounded group of friends. One of the things I cherish so much about my own friend group is how eclectic it is – we’re a bunch of misfits in our own ways- but if an outsider were to label each of us – they’d be surprised that we’re all friends. And everyone comes from a different background – some from all over the world – and everyone also seems to be at different stages of their own life journey.

There have been moments in my life when I wished I had someone who was on a similar journey as me. Thinking that perhaps then I’d feel understood. But what I realized this morning is that it’s because of the incredibly varied perspectives of those who I surround myself with that I feel free enough to break through the constraints that I had on me.

I had someone I was chatting with recently share their passion and drive for their career. At first – I glommed onto that and used that to carry the conversation a bit – and it was an enjoyable chat. But later, as I reflected on how nice it was to talk to someone who has a lot of drive in their career, I also reminded myself that that was once me – but i’m not in that place anymore. I no longer live to work. Not at all. I reminded myself how once upon a time, I would put a lot of weight on someone’s worth being tied to their job or their career accomplishments. And now? I just don’t care anymore. Are they happy? Are they content and healthy and balanced?

I’d have never changed my way of thinking if it weren’t for my diverse group of friends who were both kind and brave enough to share their own perspectives in order to widen mine. I’m so grateful to have them in my life – and am hopeful that I’ll continue to grow in these ways. 🙂

I do hope you are all doing well out there! Stop in and leave a note below and tell me what has been on your mind today? Happy Tuesday!

“Staying in your lane”

My sister says this to people. A lot. And sometimes I agree with her, and other times, not so much. You see, if I had “stayed in my lane” my entire life, then I wouldn’t be where I am. In fact, I’d wager, had she said that to me long ago – i’d have found a way to kindly tell her to go fuck herself because you can’t stay in one lane when you own the pool. 😀 But I digress. I get why she says it – it’s to help someone know when they are slipping from their path – or losing focus. It is a signal, to reel it in and double check yourself. How often do people even DO that anymore? I find that I do it often – and perhaps maybe need to just let it loose a little more. Granted – that does beg the question – what happens if you don’t know what lane you’re even in? Maybe you’re actually swimming diagonally across the pool?! Maybe you don’t believe in lanes! 😀 Hehe.

This week – I really need to stay in my lane when it comes to work focus. I’ve got lots to do, both for my day job and for my comic. I also just generally need to recover from a full weekend of shenanigans. The sister and I went to Portland for a short overnight getaway. The weekend was filled with a mix of things – shopping, self care, good food, strippers!, new friends, old friends… you name it. And while I had fun – a blast actually during most of it – I’m feeling a bit overly crispy around the edges today. Like – stick a fork in me already – i’m done. I may take a bit of a nap later and see if it re-energizes me.

My comic work is coming about slowly and steadily. At least on “Bar Tales”. My Mom book however I’m still stuck on. I need to just suck it up and start drawing the main character and not stop until i can do her consistently. But the problem is – she is me. And i’m still learning to see myself. It’s hard. My view of myself changes constantly – perhaps that’s why I feel like I own the pool rather than a single lane. I’ve written about this in the past and it still feels true today – we wear a lot of masks in society – and I’m not entirely convinced that all of us have figured out who we are without them.

Well, I better get back to my work morning – but here’s me wishing you a happy week!

Good morning Neverland!

That moment when you feel SEEN

Today’s post will be a bit short – but there’s something i’ve been mulling on for a couple of days and I thought i’d share it with y’all. There is something so intoxicating about feeling seen and heard. When someone you’re trying to connect with not only connects with you -but truly sees you – for all your messy glory. Isn’t that exactly what we all strive for? Whether it’s in dating, with friends, with family – even with coworkers. Connecting with others doesn’t matter if they don’t see you for who you are.

This happened to me recently and it put me in a spin – the good kind. 🙂 Granted – this person also called me out in some of my truths. And that’s not always super comfortable. They called me out for being a lonely person. And at first – my reaction was horror. You SAW that?! I don’t want anyone to see or recognize that. That’s supposed to be a secret!! But then I had to think about it some more… why is my reaction to a statement of truth embarrassment or shame?

I supposed we’ve all been there tho. You know that moment I’m talking about. When you realize that perhaps you’ve been misunderstood. When perhaps the people you needed to really KNOW you – show that maybe they don’t fully understand you. And your heart squeezes in longing. A longing to connect at a different depth. To be understood. To be seen and welcomed and accepted and dare I say, even loved.

It’s not shameful to have only a select few people who know and see me for who I really am. Besides- who said we were going for quantity here? It’s all about the quality baby!! 🙂 I keep telling myself that I AM accepted. I AM welcomed and loved by many – but I also recognize that so very few actually know me at any real depth. The very few people who know me at my core and love me for who I am are wonderful amazing people who I am grateful that I have. That said – I think the shock was in realizing that someone else could pick up on the fact that I’ve been wishing to add a few more to what I lovingly refer to as “My tribe”.

Feeling seen… and validated … does something else too. It empowers a person to feel more confident in continuing to be who they are. Maybe this is what the world lacks these days – people are so busy either trying to show the world who they are that they don’t take a moment to see the person standing in front of them. Or worse – people only see a piece and assume it paints the whole picture.

I think that’s all I’ve wanted, for most of my life, in fact. For someone to see me – at my core -and still care about me and love me enough to want to stick. The only one who’s done that up to this point – is me. And that’s ok too. 🙂

So to you – my readers – I ask – who have you spent time to SEE today? Who do you feel seen by?

Talk soon neverland.

The most epic of epic updates

Hello my dearest of dear readers. I realize it’s been quite literally more than half the year since I’ve written in this blog. But – I think perhaps you’ll forgive me when you learn a bit more about what I’ve been up to. I think i’ll just start where I left off…

I was struggling – with work, with myself, with trying to figure out what to do next in my world. So I did the unimaginable. I quit my job as Director and decided to do some serious traveling. I made two trips down to the caribbean – US Virgin Islands. In February and again in April.

There is something so healing about those blue waters, I get lost in them. I have always been a water baby… but there is something magical about an ocean that I can swim in without fear of hypothermia. I would literally spend 8 hours at a time just swimming and exploring. At some point – I’ll detail out all the fun travel stories – and believe me, there were MANY.

When I returned home, I worked for a short couple of months in a temporary position…. cuz dollar bills y’all…. and then realized I wasn’t done traveling. I booked a camper van for an entire month and decided to whisk me, my two children and my two dogs away on an adventure of a lifetime. We plotted our course – the goal was to make it all the way to the coast of texas and back. We would look at properties along the way – as I had it in my head that I wanted a vacation property – something I could enjoy once the kids were grown and off living their own lives (which for one of my kids is happening right now – the other still has a good 9 years to go).

It truly was the trip of a lifetime -for all of us in different ways. I think in some ways – that trip pushed me to learn new things about myself, and what I’m capable of as a single woman, as a mom, and as a friend.

There’s more to say there – but I promise they will become blog posts all on their own.

So far, this year, I’ve worn bikinis, I’ve climbed mountains, I’ve rescued a group of tourists and taught another group how to kayak. I saved a woman from drowning and held her in my arms as she had a seizure. I danced in the rain, and sang to the sea. I made friends at every turn and opened my heart to new experiences, new perspectives and new adventures at EVERY SINGLE TURN.

While in St Croix, I made a new friend had to go visit her in Dallas when I returned from my crazy road trip adventure.

Dallas was another level – and just added to the learnings I had while traveling. This time, I went as just me, no pets or kids. We went shopping and I danced around the store when I learned I was down 5 sizes from what I thought I was.

Everywhere I go – I’m learning that my energy is magnetic. It pulls people to it. 🙂 And it’s incredible.

When I returned home, I realized that purchasing property far away just didn’t make sense. So I decided to invest in myself instead. I’ve leased a commercial building and spent a couple of months turning it into a studio space. And now- here I sit in a space that feels INCREDIBLE. We will be doing a photoshoot so that I can properly show it off to the world – but i’m working on my books (yes – plural! 2 comic books!!)

Life is fricken fantastic. It’s been a LONG time since i’ve been able to say that. I’m living my BEST life and feel DAMN proud of every single second. I’m doing well still with my weight loss – but more than that – I know my worth. I see myself as a beautiful woman with a lot to offer the world. I no longer need to question whether or not I’m worthy. I KNOW it.

And it’s fucking amazing. 🙂

So, to those of you who still read this blog – please know that i’m going to be updating a hell of a lot more often. I’m going to show you the studio and share some travel stories and even share my comics because I’m fiercely proud of them and they’re BADASS! 😀 hehe.

Much love, dear readers. I hope you’re still holding on and that the pandemic and quarantine haven’t completely broken your spirit. If you’re close – and barely holding on – just know – I’m here for you. You aren’t alone. And if I can do it – we can do it with you together too. 🙂

2021 is off to an interesting start

I don’t want to jinx it. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush… but so far – 2021 is off to an interesting start. I find myself in a unique position to take a little break from the stresses of my career and give myself a reset. A reset from all that happened in 2020. I don’t want to get into any of the real nitty gritty details right now – but a few highlights include

  • Losing the woman who helped raise me to Covid
  • Divorce
  • My kid “came out” – lots of whirlwind rollercoaster emotions with that one, but the end result has been quite positive.
  • Work stresses from 4 manager changes – and then over the New Years break deciding it was time to move on from that company.

And so much more…. I’ve decided to really look at what I’ve been prioritizing in my life. To really focus on my health and wellbeing – both physical and emotional and mentally. It’s a little bit scary – but it feels right. And I’m doing it holistically – across many avenues and many paths.

I’ve started drawing again…even drawing about the moments from this blog. It’s a comic book or web comic – of this blog…of my life. A modern day ”Cathy” or A modern day ”Calvin and Hobbes” – but about a mom instead of a boy. A grown up female mom with an imagination that rivals the boy. I don’t know if it will amount to anything -but I’m absolutely beyond driven to make it a real thing. It feels so good to draw the moments that helped shape who I am. Poignant Vulnerable Moments. Some of them are even quite funny! It’s been a very positive and very empowering project to get started on – and the more I work on it – the more I see it taking real shape. I can also see where I’ve been influenced as far as other artists in my life. 🙂

I’ve been slowly sharing pages and work in progress on a new instagram account. If any of you are interested – I’d love a like or two on the ones that make you smile or make you think. In truth – I’m still learning – my grandfather was the artist – not me. But it brings me such joy.

http://www.instagram.com/snowfallstudiosart

I think right now, I have 6 followers – and a few came from my kid. 🙂 I don’t mind. In theory – people will slowly find my work and if they like it – they’ll follow me as I go. Even if no one ever finds them… it feels good to put visuals to the story I’m telling about my life.

I just did this piece … it doesn’t fit with the blog – but it’s a bit more relevant for the world we’re in right now. It’s showing what it would be like to go on a vacation in a world where we not only wear masks – but we also have our own personal plastic bubble (PPB). It was fun to draw out to be honest. And I’m not sure my line art does it justice – at some point – I’ll put color to it – but I kind of like what it is right now – as it is.

I’ve also highly enjoyed drawing the kids and my pups – showing those little moments that bring such joy in my life. Even my son has enjoyed helping me plan out different panels and tell a story. How could I NOT want to spend my time doing THAT? 🙂

Well – I better get back to my day – but I wanted to check in. All the love to you in neverland. We’ll catch up again real soon. If you feel up to it – leave me a note in the comment section – how’s your 2021 going so far?