Monday, October 29, 2007

Without a Net

Living Life With Trust

As I create the life of my dreams, I often reach a crossroads where the choices seem to involve the risk of facing the unknown versus the safety and comfort of all that I have come to trust. I feel like a tightrope walker, carefully teetering along the narrow path to my goals, sometimes feeling that I am doing so without a net. Knowing I have some backup may help me work up the courage to take those first steps, until I am secure in knowing that I have the skills to work without one. But when I live my life from a place of balance and trust in the universe, I may not see our source of support, but I can know that it is there.

If I refuse to act only if I can see the safety net, I may be allowing the net to become a trap as it creates a barrier between me and the freedom to pursue my goals. Change is inherent in life, so even what I have learned to trust can surprise me at any moment. Remove fear from the equation and then, without even wondering what is going on below, I can devote my full attention to the dream that awaits me.

We attract support into our lives when we are willing to make those first tentative steps, trusting that the universe will provide exactly what we need. In that process I can decide that whatever comes from my actions is only for my highest and best experience of growth. It may come in the form of a soft landing, an unexpected rescue or an eye-opening experience gleaned only from the process of falling. So rather than allowing my life to be dictated by fear of the unknown, or trying to avoid falling, I can appreciate that sometimes I experience life fully when I am willing to trust and fall. And in doing so, I may just find that I have the wings to fly.

When I believe that there is a reason for everything, I am stepping out with the safety net of the universe, and I know I will make the best from whatever comes my way.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Feast of St. Jude, Apostle

Back to Asana

Tonight I am going to yoga. I've not been to yoga since two months BEFORE I left for India. I had no real reasons for not going, just missed one class...and then another...and then another.

I am ready to be back on my mat. Sometimes I think I take these hiatuses for reasons that I can neither explain nor understand. For me, I get to a point where I feel completely confident and comfortable in life and feel like things are going extremely well and that I don't need the yoga to compliment my life. So I stop going and continue to live my life from day to day, dealing with the issues the best I can. Then I start to stress out and become overwhelmed while dealing with all those issues and seek refuge and comfort in the things I know and love most: Mass, my friends, prayer, and yoga. I feel that I run away or hide my feelings because of pride or the fear of burdening my friends. So if I continue to avoid situations that force me to feel and force me to think and force me to deal with these things head-on, I won't have to feel or think or deal. But now, I am ready to deal. I am ready to face things from a different angle and maybe see the world a tad differently when I come out.

I have a lot of energy (duh) and I think it will be good for me to be more grounded at this time in my life. I feel like I am all over the place, and through prayer and yoga I hope to become more grounded, more centered.

Governor's Cup

Yesterday morning the alarm came much too early. 6:30 a.m. on a Saturday is just not cool. However, I woke up with butterflies dancing in my stomach in anticipation for the morning's upcoming event. Slowly I rolled myself out of bed, put on my shoes and said a quick prayer before leaving the house. I was going to need all the help I could get!

I met up with my fellow runners at the State House and we stood around waiting for the race to start. We lined up at the start line and I was completely oblivious when the race actually started. I had my back to the start line and was in the middle of a sentence when Z said, "Hey, we're running now!"

Mile 1 came up quick in my mind. Although our time was quite slow, I felt good and strong. I thought they'd forgotten to put out a sign marking Mile 2 because it felt like we would never get there. I ran with Z the entire time* and settled into my usual routine of synching my steps up with his. Mile 2 finally came and we continued on with relative ease. I am quite impressed that we didn't fade at that point, considering the longest we'd run in a long time was 2 miles. At Mile 3, I told Z "hey, we're over half way done!" That was good news to the both of us even though I knew the hardest part of the race was coming up. So, we entered the final mile at the corner of Blossom and Saluda. Up Blossom Street and then a right on Sumter Street was the plan. Initially, Blossom Street isn't too bad as it's somewhat flat. Then right around Pickens Street, the road starts to incline. And continues to incline. Then, you think you're done with the hill but NO! You have to turn on Sumter Street, which is also a nice hill. At this point, my chest was about to explode. We caught up with Dogwood and ran toward the finish line. Dogwood encouraged Z to run ahead and sprint to the finish, which he did. When I crossed the finish line, I had that momentary feeling of "Oh dear, I think I might puke!" Luckily that feeling left rather quickly and I neither collapsed nor puked. Our official times haven't been posted yet, but I believe we finished right around 46 minutes and a few seconds. Not too shabby for our first 8K.

My legs are a tad sore today, but I had so much fun yesterday and really enjoyed the feeling of accomplishment when it was all over. Minnie Mouse wants to run in the Cooper River race in April, but I'm a little unsure of that at this point. But who knows...stranger things have happened.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


TWO DAYS! Only two days until the Governor's Cup Road Race. AHH!!! It's safe to say that I am nowhere near ready for the 8K run, but I will give it my best shot. I suppose that's all I ever intended to do in the first place. However, my training has definitely slacked off over the past two weeks for various reasons: some good, some bad. I did manage to get back out and run yesterday and this morning, and will be doing so for the rest of the week. Saturday morning will be an interesting experience, to say the least.

Whose idea was this anyway? Oh right--it was mine. Rats! That means I can't blame anyone else! :-)

Monday, October 22, 2007

Homeward Bound

I am sitting in the Blue Grass Airport waiting Delta flight 5026 to Cincinnati and am hopeful all goes well. It's raining like crazy here and storms are in the forecast. Right now everything seems to be on schedule, so I keep praying I get out of here and get home tonight.

It's funny how Columbia has become my true home. It felt incredibly weird to be here this weekend; to be around the old sites and sounds and friends and family. Although last night I stayed in the same room I spent three years in, I felt like a visitor in someone's home. I am glad to have had the time here to see my friends and family, but I am ready to be home. Home where I feel comfortable and settled. I am an overly anxious person anyway and this trip definitely did not help that situation. Deep breaths and lots of prayer were my strategies.

South Carolina: HERE I COME!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

A Few More Pics

Erin and Boston

Mylissa and Brooke

Boston and Alaska

Me and Boston

A Few Pics

Jamie and Jamie before the Groom's Dinner Friday night
Alaska and Me
Jamie and the beautiful bride!


Brooke and Matt

Good ol' fashioned KY fun

It's been one of the best (and most exhausting) weekends of my life. Being home creates a million different thoughts and emotions for me, but having time with some of my oldest friends was one of the best things for me right now. It allowed me to leave Columbia behind, in many ways, and focus on being present. These moments were all so precious, and looking back, I can't believe the weekend is already over. When leaving the hotel this morning, my friend Erin and I were saddened by the fact that it's all over. All the fun, partying, being with these friends--it's all over. It's back to normal life.

The entire weekend beginning Thursday was one big awesome party. I landed at Bluegrass Airport about 30 minutes late due to some air traffic congestion in Cincinnati. My friend, Jamie, picked me up and we immediately went to Keeneland for tailgating and fun. We had a cornhole tournament, ate so much great food, and partied for the entire afternoon. We eventually went into the grandstands around 3:00 p.m. and a few people did fairly well with the whole betting thing. I decided to not partake, which is a good thing based on the choices I would have put money on. The last race ran about 5:30 p.m. and we stuck around for a little longer outside and then moved the party to Brooke and Matt's new house. (Brooke and Matt are the couple who were married on Saturday.) We stayed up talking, laughing and visiting until about 3:00 a.m. First night of very little sleep.

Friday morning, the girls all got up and were treated to manicures and pedicures. 8:00 a.m. came very early, but it was a blast. Then we had a bridal luncheon while the boys went to play paintball. After the luncheon, we did manage to get a little nap and rest up for the evening. 5:00 p.m. was the rehearsal followed by the Groom's Dinner. It was at a very nice Italian chophouse here in Lexington, where I had a delightful 3 course meal consisting of salad, salmon & filet, and cheesecake dipped in chocolate. To top all that off, it was open bar. No need to say more about that.

[Matt's friends are incredible. The guy I walked down the aisle with is a sweet, handsome guy who lives in Anchorage, Alaska!! (I know, I know...why can't I find a nice guy who lives in the same city??) The groomsmen were Matt's oldest and dearest friends, and we all had SO MUCH FUN together. Kevin and I hit it off immediately and had a lot of fun together.]

So, after the Groom's Dinner most of the bridesmaids and groomsmen went back to the hotel to continue the party. Second night of very little sleep.

It was, once again, up early on Saturday morning for pampering and preparation for the big event! Jamie, Erin and I went to have our hair done and then it was back to the hotel for makeup and getting dressed. Brooke looked absolutely amazing. She's a beautiful girl and looked simply breathtaking in her dress. I like to the think the rest of us looked pretty great too! She is probably the oldest friend I have--going all the way back to 3rd grade. We've always shared a special connection that I am so grateful for. She's an incredible woman, someone I admire and love dearly. To see her so much in love is inspiring (and the guy she snagged is equally as cool and genuinely amazing!) To be a part of her day meant the world to me.

The ceremony was simple and nice. It was held outdoors and we couldn't have asked for a more beautiful day. The night before at rehearsal was alittle chilly and breezy, but Saturday night was just perfect. The reception was fantastic and we danced until we couldn't dance anymore. I think we ended at midnight. Once again, we moved the party back to the hotel where Brooke and Matt stayed up and hung out with all of us for quite awhile. I think they left to go to their room about 4:00 a.m. That didn't stop the party, however, and I actually never did get to sleep on Saturday night.

But it was all totally worth it and I would do it all again in a heartbeat. It was one of those weekends that you remember forever and could never repeat even if you tried. It was that perfect. It was that much fun.

Monday, October 15, 2007


"Perfect hope is achieved on the brink of despair, when instead of falling over the edge, we find ourselves walking on air. Hope is always ready to turn into despair but never does, for at the moment of supreme crisis, God's power is suddenly made perfect in our infirmity. So we learn to expect his mercy most calmly when all is most dangerous, to seek him quietly in the face of peril, certain that he cannot fail us."

~Thomas Merton

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

New Art

While perusing a Barnes and Noble this past weekend, I came across a Gustav Klimt calendar. I've always loved "The Kiss" and saw another painting of his that caught my eye. After no success in the art section at that particular B&N, I did what any other resourceful person would do: Google it! It's called "Farm Garden with Crucifix." I think it's simply beautiful!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007


This past weekend I visited Richmond, VA with some very good friends and had a great time. It was exhausting, but lots of fun! What a great city Richmond is! The shopping was great (Carytown rocks)! I got lots of goodies for the Fall. Now if the weather would just get a little cooler so I can wear those new sweaters!

I received my new book today, Jesuit Off-Broadway, written by James Martin, SJ. I've only read about 10 pages, but already love it! A theatre company in NYC performed a play in 2005 called The Last Days of Judas Iscariot and asked Fr. Martin to be their "theological advisor." What little I do know about the play itself, it seems like something Trustus would perform. It takes place in a courtroom in a town called Hope, near purgatory, with Judas on trial with jury members such as Mother Teresa, Caiaphas, Pilate, Sigmund Freud and Simon the Zealot. Should be very interesting reading about his perspective on Judas, forgiveness and the theatre as well. I'm super excited.

Not much planned for this week really. Friday I am trying something new, however. I am going to see an acupuncturist. A friend from work so kindly offered this to me, and I thought "Hey, it can't hurt!" I think there's something to holistic treatments and health care in addition to traditional Western medicine. This Friday is just a consultation, but I am really excited nonetheless.

Saturday I was thinking of running in the Red Cross 5K here in Columbia as a sort of preparation for the Governor's Cup. But, due to certain events that have taken place earlier this week, I think I might pass. I can't imagine running right now, but maybe by the end of the week I'll feel differently. Still--might be a good idea to rest and resume next week.

I've been rather down and removed today. I know things will get better and that "tomorrow is another day." I did have the opportunity to make a friend very happy today, which made my heart soar. There's something unspeakably wonderful about giving someone something you know they'll adore and appreciate. I should do things like that more often...