Wherever I go, I'm bringing myself with me. I'm in a bit of a conscious rebellious phase: tattoos about self-love, singing out loud, doing what I want, and living with boundaries. It's good, my brothers. It's real good.
1. Singing together.
I know, I know, singing has been on my list recently. It was singing to myself for all the reasons including vagus nerve stimulation, primal joy and connecting to the exalted version of self. Seems dramatic, I know, but it's true. So singing together is really such a way to release, embody and play. Celebrating a belated Christmas with my partner's family, I found myself smiling to the songs they'd burst into. If I knew, I'd join, if I didn't, I'd just let it wash over me in all its cheer.
2. Maintaining my vibe.
I'm hyper-attuned and vigilant to my surroundings. Growing up with personality disorders rampant in my field, I learned that the most important thing I could do for my own safety and possibly even survival, was become extremely aware of peoples' shifts. I can feel every one in the room. My therapist tells me I'll always be this sensitive - it's a sense I've developed; It's not like once you can see you can just unsee. So I'm focusing now on really remembering: the shifts/moods of others have literally NOTHING to do with me. I can stay high on my vibe. I remind myself over and over again because it's my sanity and health that's on the line if I don't.
My vibe is my vibe and I can vibe no matter what.
3. My new tattoo.
I got the words "aloha mā" tattooed on the inside of my arm above my elbow. I'd been considering something in that space for a while and it was down to two Hawaiian words. When I walked into the tattoo shop, I felt almost immediately that the word was "aloha mā," meaning "self-reflective love." As within, so without. It's a phrase that comes from the Mū lineage and ironically, is the lesson I learned from my Mū (my childhood home in the jungle of Maui). The crossover blew my mind and as I'm finishing the first draft of my book about it all, I felt moved to ink it in.
4. The feeling.
Sean and I have been looking at places in OC for a homestead in California. It was down to two places: one with an ocean view and three bedrooms, the other with a valley view and two bedrooms. Wildly, the ocean view was bigger and less expensive. On paper, it was all about the ocean one. We couldn't argue with it. We found ourselves feeling confused though because... we liked the valley view better. It was smaller, a bit more expensive and a bit less practical, but it felt really, really good. We looked at each other and decided: it's about the feeling. And that feels amazing.
5. "Home" by Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeroes.
Oldie, but goodie. This song satiates so much in me. It's nostalgic, fun and warm. It came on as I drove back home to Sean from an event in LA. We had the lease sitting in our inboxes for our new spot and I thought, "home really is wherever I'm with you."
Always, but also hardly ever. Believe me, I've put in the work, but I had such deep self-loathing and self-abuse to heal from my childhood and adolescence that I really couldn't say I truly loved myself until this year. I wanted to. I believed I could. But finally, I am taking the actions to support that. I am saying the words to confirm that. I am putting me first and protecting myself from harm within and without, finally, finally, finally.
7. Yin yang nails.
Okay, they're not really yin-yang, but everyone keeps calling them that. I painted my nails a natural nude-ish pink and had a horizontal line painted below the tips. On the left hand, black. On the right hand, white. I love that it captures dark and light. I am all of it and I love honoring all of it.
8. Simple dinners.
I love food. I like cooking. I don't always have time to be innovative and creative. You know the phrase "too much on my plate?" Why literally and/or metaphorically add more? I've been throwing bowls together with whatever is ready and easy in the fridge lately and honestly, some of those meals have been some of the most delicious!
9. Silly themes.
It was impromptu, but the other night with Sean's family, we sat around the table and played Farkle with face masks on. "Farkle and face masks" became "Farkle, facemasks, and artists that start with 'F.'" In between roles, we took turns adding songs to the playlist by people like Frank Ocean, Foreigner, Farruko, Fall Out Boy and Fleetwood Mac and FISHER. It was chaotic, hilarious and perfect.
10. Imitating plants on walks.
This game came to fruition on a roadtrip between to Palm Springs a few months ago, but we brought it back on a group hike and had an absolute ball.
Here's how to play:
1. notice any plant in the area
2. imitate it with your body
3. give it a sound or a catchphrase
There's no winning. There's just laughing maniacally and acting like a fool. It also gets you out of your head, into nature and into the present. So hell yeah: my kind of wellness.
11. Claiming what I want.
I've been saying this for a minute, but what I'm realizing is life evolves (who woulda thought!? We're not stuck in time!?) and so we'll have to do this again and again in our lives as our needs, desires and situations change. I'm finding myself changing a lot (as I keep mentioning) and it's so empowering to stop resisting and meet myself there. I want new things. And shortly after finally declaring them to myself and others, quite a few magical things that are right in line have landed on my doorstep.