Compression Confessional

Sometimes I hold my breath so hard

the wind knocks me

out

When I cannot, do not want to

gasp for

air, there

is nothing keeping

it in, away

Hidden, buried below

all my

PRESSURE

Not now or

evermore, will

expectations cease

stabbing me senseless,

breathless

until I’ve dissolved

misunderstood, intensely

waiting,

fiercely wanting

success…

Not Enough Hours in the Day

Listen up.  If someone in your life is a college student, I want you to know that they are carrying a great deal of weight.  It is rigorous, exhausting, extremely intense, and sometimes it feels like being trapped in the middle of a long, pitch dark tunnel – feeling as if you may never re-emerge amidst the light again.

It’s tough.  It is especially challenging when you are attending college as an unconventional, non-tradition student.

Sometimes, no matter how much support you know you have, this journey can feel soul-crushing.

What I am saying is this.  I have found that breaking point where I am giving all I possibly can and it still doesn’t feel good enough.  But, guess what?  It most certainly is.

I am human.  I have a pain threshold and I have reached it.

We can only do so much and no matter high how our self expectations may be, it is important to remember that we will never be perfect.  In the wise words of Miguel Ruiz:

“Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret.”

I have been doing the best I can and although it sometimes feels like not enough, I have chosen to accept my limits.  I am prepared to let the failures intertwine with my success.

We all have our pressures in life.  That is undeniable.  But we all need a shoulder sometimes.  Please let someone vent to you today.  Or simply call and ask how they are doing.  That alone, may be the greatest form of relief that person receives in a sea full of chaos.

Love and Light,

 

Jamie

If the Sun Don’t Shine, I’ll Be Just Fine

The simple thing about dreams is, they don’t always turn out like Cinderella’s night at the Ball.  Life is not a fairytale.  Reality can be cruel.

As it happened, I did not end up being selected for the scholarship of my dreams.  It was disappointing, to say to least.  I had already imagined how life-changing it would be.  I vividly envisioned the future.

I could wallow in it and let it discourage me, but honestly, I am too busy preparing Plan B.  (Good stuff in the works)

If I am being honest, there was a brief moment that I let myself believe that all the hard work I put in at my community college would be in vain.  What a brutal thought that was.

The truth is, up until three years ago, I had no idea what I wanted to do with this gift of life.  My life.  I wasn’t sure what inspired me or where my passion was.  I know now.  Right fucking now.  I know what moves me. I know what pushes me.  I know what is worth fighting for.  I know what I am working towards.  I know what is driving me.

I will not stop pushing and climbing and falling and failing and succeeding until I accomplish my goals, breathe in my aspirations, and swim in my dreams.    And if that means I will also be swimming in pools of student debt, then so be it.

 

 

The Speed of Slowing Down

Today feels fresh.  New.

I am enjoying a short few weeks off before I return to school for my final semester in my undergraduate pursuit.

I have so many college/scholarship related tasks that must be completed very soon.  But that will not stop me from finding some time to get away.  I have made it a tradition to take a trip somewhere every time I finish a semester.  Whether it is somewhere I’ve already been or somewhere new, I know it will be a chance to relax my body and my mind.  I need the adventure to cleanse my soul.

I am living in the moment and that is the ultimate gift to myself.

The Wind and the Sail

Tomorrow.  9 am. CHEMISTRY FINAL.

As I head into the most challenging exam that I’ve taken so far, I would like to talk about resistance.

This semester has been rough.  From the outside, it most likely appears that I have had it under control the entire time.  That, however, is false.

In semesters past, I have spent more of my down time studying.  Time was more precious these last few months, as was my energy level, and my mental and physical health.

There were times when I was so incredibly exhausted, that I had to give in.  I chose sleep over late night studying and, at times, naps over homework completion.

This, although very out of character for me, for necessary for survival.  If there is one thing I am, it is a warrior.

And so, while I do feel I pushed myself, it was not to my maximum.  If I would have worked any harder, I felt I might have given up, and I am certainly not a quitter.

That brings me to the topic of resistance.  You have to know when enough is enough.  I needed to protect the little bit of light and life that still radiates within.  Sometimes I feel that I gave up my livelihood in exchange for my quest towards my education.  My life has completely changed.  It has purpose and direction, but sometimes feels so trapped and alone.

So the sky is the limit.  I can join honor societies, maintain an impressive GPA, and conquer every class.  But if I don’t listen to the voice inside that reminds me to take care of myself, none of the other things matter.

I once was a workaholic and maybe now I have become a schoolaholic.

But I will never forget to put myself first because I am worth that.

Work In Progress

“I remind myself every morning: Nothing I say this day will teach me anything. So if I’m going to learn, I must do it by listening.”

~Larry King
I got in front of class today and told a story.  Most importantly, I listened to others tell their stories and felt the power that was present while they conquered their fears the same as mine; I felt their vulnerability.
This life is all about relationships.  Within relationships, we learn.  Communicating was always something I wasn’t exactly comfortable with.  My default was just to become emotional when things became too real.  But slowly, I’m evolving.
The people in my life transform me every day.  They listen to me and believe in me and that alone is incredibly motivational.
I recently shared childhood stories with my therapist.  Stories about all those cruel kids who used to pick on me for many years. I knew that it had a deep impact on me, but I hadn’t realized that I was still letting it affect me in my everyday life.  Point being, I know the past is done and gone.  I can’t change it.  I only wish to understand myself and feel comfortable about who I am.  And so I am working on it.
The future me is more confident.  The future me is more adjusted.  The future me feels more stability.  The future me also respects the present me.  I know I have so far to go, but I believe in the gift of time.  Every day is a new chance to see things in a new light.  A chance to move on.
One day I hope to give a speech to a much larger audience than just my classroom.  I hope that my words will touch lives.  Above all, I hope to leave behind a lasting impression in the minds of others.

Full Speed Ahead

Things are moving fast these days.  That’s both exciting and scary for me.  I met with my advisor this week to talk about what my next steps should be.  I will be graduating in approximately 10 months.  There are many universities to research and decide on, personal essays to write and many scholarships to apply for.  I’m thrilled that my dream is happening.  At the same time, I’m always wondering how I will pull it all together.

When you attend college at my age, it isn’t clear what to expect.  Now that I’m in my third semester, I believe I get it.  This experience hasn’t just been a way to hopefully secure a decent career for myself in the future.  College has been a forum to meet new people, open my mind to things I never used to think about, awaken my critical thinking skills, something to give my all to, but most of all it is shaping me.  When I am done with this journey, that I am only just beginning, I will be someone who knows what she wants and knows how to get it.  I am partly there now, but I have so far to go.  The path is long, but the view is worth it.

Every night before I go to bed, I think about what I am working towards.  I remember how lucky I am to be given the opportunity to work towards my dreams.  I envision my future and I know that all the struggle is for a reason.  This is all happening and it is so very real.

Back to Reality

Today was my first day back to classes and it went well.  My professors are great and I feel like I really know what I’m doing this semester; perhaps more prepared and focused.  One of the classes I am taking is Stress Management and today we did about 45 minutes of yoga and meditation.  I have to say that was my absolute favorite moment of college thus far.  Earning college credits for reducing stress and practicing yoga??!?  It’s going to be an amazing semester.

I am also taking my second health class in which the focus is mainly nutrition; this is extra exciting because nutrition is my major and I am so ready to dive further into the topic.  I am taking a CPR course, Communications and Chemistry (terrifying but semi-thrilling) as well.

I’m ready for more challenges, more knowledge and more tools to advance myself and my career.