Cracked But Not Broken

12 Mar

Cracked But Not Broken

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Female empowerment, bathtub editorial, March On Washington, scoliosis surgery, beautifully scarred, perfectly flawed

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Female empowerment, bathtub editorial, March On Washington, scoliosis surgery, beautifully scarred, perfectly flawed
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Female empowerment, bathtub editorial, March On Washington, scoliosis surgery, beautifully scarred, perfectly flawed
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Female empowerment, bathtub editorial, March On Washington, scoliosis surgery, beautifully scarred, perfectly flawed
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Female empowerment, bathtub editorial, March On Washington, scoliosis surgery, beautifully scarred, perfectly flawed
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Female empowerment, bathtub editorial, March On Washington, scoliosis surgery, beautifully scarred, perfectly flawed

“The scar meant that I was stronger than what tried to hurt me.” -Anaïs Nin

I frequently talk about troubles, struggles, triumphs, crashes and burns. I talk about how, after crumbling into little pieces, I’ve attempted to glue it all back together and move forward – stronger than I was before breaking.

Not to be dark and dreary, but I am convinced that, as women, we may never stop facing struggles, unfortunately, on global scale. It’s something that is hitting particularly hard today, Inauguration Day, when all you magical females and males are standing strong and defending our rights by Marching. FUCK YES, I wish I was in Washington, holding hands and waking with you…or in any of the many cities that are walking for an important cause and defending our rights. Perhaps we don’t have a president that makes us proud to be Americans, but we still have each other – and its days like today that show just how strong community can be.

Currently I am in London, feeling wimpish and incapacitated, due to back pain and spasms in my neck, stomach, ass, legs, and a terrible ache in my head (I know, waahhhh, get over it – but it really hurts). This is all a result of a pretty crazy surgery I had over a decade ago, when I developed scoliosis after making the decision to end my 11 year career as a gymnast. I completed my third year at level 10, just before entering Elite trials, and checked out — you can see my last competition HERE. As a result of the quick termination, my back completely spazzed. I went from being a national champion, to ignorantly checking in to HOAG Hospital for a very intense operation, thinking nothing of it. I had no idea what I was in for.

To backtrack, I was training about 30 hours per week (5 hours a day, 6 days a week), and when I stopped, had an unexpected growth spurt. I went from being a tiny little 5 ft. nothing powerhouse, to a flaily 5ft. 5 in., spiral spined disaster.

One of my ribs was protruding, so I was brought in for x-rays a couple months after I quit gym. Doctors told me I had scoliosis, but it was minor and I should return for a check up in a few months. When I did, my spine had swiveled into a 48 degree curve, and surgery was the only option if I wanted to have a “normal life”.

I remember the night before like it was yesterday, but I wasn’t particularly nervous. I was more annoyed that I couldn’t eat a Happy Meal or drink water.

They took me in, drugged the shit out of me, and put me under. I “woke up” in the ICU, after 6+ hours under the knife (they took out a rib, collapsed my lung, removed a number of disks between my vertebrae in order to straighten it out, fused my spine with my ground up rib bone – as you can see in the first image above – and put in two metal rods and 10 screws). They inserted a chest tube that reached through to my stomach to drain the blood. I spent three days in the ICU and was then moved to my own room, where I spent the next week, on a Morphine pump…I remember very little, just pain. I remember them removing the chest tube and I definitely recall the pain I experienced when I got home, where I remained on bed rest for about a month, and experienced the deepest depression I hope I ever have to go through.

THIS WAS THE WORST, SCARIEST, BEST, AND MOST PIVOTAL EXPERIENCE OF MY LIFE. I WOULDN’T CHANGE A THING.

I was in misery. So much pain. My mother sent my brother and sister, who were also young at the time, on a trip to Europe with my dad, so they wouldn’t have to hear me wailing in agony. She stood by my side, took me to the bathroom, bathed me, and nursed me back to health.

Eventually I realized, after plenty of time spent pitying myself, I was SO FUCKING LUCKY to have the opportunity to regain my health again. Somewhere during the depression that came with living inside of a drugged out and horrifically pain-filled, broken body, I recognized just how fortunate I was. Mostly to have my mom and the knowledge that I would heal eventually. Not everyone heals after varying traumas, but I finally hit a point where I got out of my head and recognized I would. Some people lose their arms, their legs, their ability to do the things most of us take for granted…FOREVER. I was going to get better.

Now I wake up grateful for my my arms and legs (even if they hurt). I wake up proud of my accomplishments and excited for what I might be able to achieve in the future, since I have these blissful abilities. I wake up and don’t take my life for granted. Recently I wake up hoping, as an American woman, which I am lucky to be in the grand scheme of things, regardless of everything, that none of this will change…

I got pancreatitis from what was basically an accidental, prescribed drug overdose, dropped 20 pounds (from the 105 I currently, healthily weigh), couldn’t keep food down and was rushed to the ER. I was injected with anti-nausea medication through an IV which I happened to be allergic to – only about 1 in a million are intolerant of the drug. The allergy results in a “psychotic reaction”, which involved me tearing the needle from my arm and pretty much flipping my shit for about five hours. It is difficult to describe the feeling of fear pumping through your blood…

I was poked with Benadryl until I stopped screaming, and they would let me go home. The doctors informed my mother that they haven’t seen this deadly disease in anyone under the age of 60. It is typically drug addicts and alcoholics, who have been abusing for decades, who get diagnosed. I was only 16. I weighed nothing and had probably ingested a total of six Smirnoff Ices at this point in time.

Being young and resilient I fortunately was able to shake the illness, and went back to my senior year of high school, a sickly waif in agonizing pain, only to receive positive reactions from the “popular girls” who asked me about my diet secrets (no joke). I was appalled and discouraged, but also tremendously vulnerable. Was never one who cared that much about fitting in, but really, bitches?! Not all women are great, but three fucking cheers to those who are — and there are plenty of us out there. THANK YOU.

I tackled the 2-year eating disorder that succeeded this weakness, and have been battling the physical and emotional issues that accompany being a woman ever since. From WEAK, sad females, or men who have sought some kind of gratification or feel a pathetic sense of power through sexual abuse. NO. No more.

This is why I praise you who Marched. We are power. We are strength. As women, we bleed every month, we give birth, and we experience more than any man will (but MAD LOVE TO THE MEN WHO WENT OUT TOO, we are all equal after all). And I am no man hater, but I am all about girl power, and the men who recognize it – there is NOTHING stronger.

The world is in a place that bums me out a lot, and I know I am certainly not alone here. Fucking shit, DONALD TRUMP is president?! Yep. But you know what is amazing? Taking a bad situation and finding the great in it. What I saw today, while basically bedridden in London, was people all over the world Marching — standing strong. And even in the smallest of cities, attendance was higher than the number of supporters who showed up at his inauguration.

The best we can do with a bad situation is stand strong, speak out, and UNITE.

People, politics, experience, health, life…it might try to break us. But with guts, guidance, perseverance, unity, strength, and a genuine belief that you can do anything you want to (YOU CAN),  we will WIN.

*photos by Gus Melton at Nick’s Cove

Cheeseburger Love Affair

9 Feb

Over the cheesy gift roundups. Not in the mood to share a tear-jerking novella. No romantic poetry. Sure, I do indulge in these things from time to time – guilty as charged. But NOT today…

Middle fingers up to Cupid and Hallmark. Here’s to ditching labels and eye-rolling at fake holidays. For my ladies who’d prefer a night in with a bottle of red, or an evening out with gal pals and loads of laughter, over a cliché bouquet of roses…

HAPPY FUCKING VALENTINE’S DAY!

*wearing: Chanel Rouge Allure lipstick, Satin Maxi Slip Dress, pleated velvet dress from ASOS (similar styles HERE), black low-cut maxi dress from Reformation, Baldinini pumps in red pattern nappa, reading How To Murder Your Life by Cat Marnell

Video by Gus Melton at Hotel Baume Paris

Only Fools Are Satisfied

18 Dec

Only Fools Are Satisfied

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Madonna Inn, Austrian Suite, Marie Antoinette, silk nightie, ombre hair, pajama photoshoot

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Madonna Inn, Austrian Suite, Marie Antoinette, silk nightie, ombre hair, pajama photoshoot

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Madonna Inn, Austrian Suite, Marie Antoinette, silk nightie, ombre hair, pajama photoshoot

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Madonna Inn, Austrian Suite, Marie Antoinette, silk nightie, ombre hair, pajama photoshoot

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Madonna Inn, Austrian Suite, Marie Antoinette, silk nightie, ombre hair, pajama photoshoot

For the record, there is very little planning that goes into my blog posts, and they all mean something to me. These photos were shot after a sleepless night I spent working (I happen to suffer from insomnia), while on a recent road trip up the coast with a very special person who I am lucky to have in my life. My smeared makeup was the result of an unwashed face from the evening before when I got dolled up in over-the-top attire and ate a steak with 3 martinis while watching an older couple conquer the empty dance floor. So much fun.

What you see here is a series of small documentations from real experiences and a glimpse into my weird world.

I shoot on the fly, and wear what I would be wearing if I didn’t have a blog. Yes, you will find a sponsored post here and there, but even though I am dirt ass broke at the moment, I would never promote something insincerely.

I started OnTheRacks almost nine years ago, and it has always been a side project I’ve maintained because I genuinely love it. I will never be the most popular gal on the internet for multiple reasons, one of them being that I’m not willing to sacrifice my authenticity. This is a platform where I can be who I am and share my experiences with likeminded, down-to-earth individuals who might enjoy reading about some crazy girl’s life because, to an extent, it resembles their own. I just want to keep it real and hopefully provide others with a reminder that they are incredible by encouraging self-acceptance…flaws and all. Nobody’s perfect.

Perhaps these photos were wonderfully shot, when the light was just right, and sure, it may look like I am living in a fairytale sometimes. But smoke, mirrors and fine photography aside, this incredible, golden headboard is actually made of plastic, and the hotel is in the middle of nowhere and as kitschy as they come. However, that is what makes it so charming, in my opinion! IMPERFECTION.

The Madonna Inn is about fantasy, themes, and transporting yourself to a different world, where you can temporarily escape reality, with its gaudy decor and imaginary elegance. I am not Marie fucking Antoinette, but I certainly felt like it for a hot second while rolling around in this extravagant bedroom setting, wearing a silk negligee, and being told I am beautiful.

People frequently message me with congratulatory notes about my “success” but, while I do feel proud of my accomplishments to date and am always flattered by the kind words, I still have a long way to go before I’d call it that. We’ll all get there, so long as we remain passionate and willing to work hard.

At the same time, these past few months have been wearing away at my soul for a number of reasons (I’ve touched upon a few of them already here and here). Along with kind comments, I also encounter animosity for “sharing too much”. This is my platform and I don’t feel bad for expressing my emotions, in a respectful, appropriate manner. For those who have felt offended, please know that I am suffocating under a mountain of pain and betrayal, with many details that do remain undisclosed, because I have class, respect, and some dignity (though I was also robbed of quite a bit, to be frank). I am human. And I happen to be a human who is cordial, intelligent, loving, forgiving and thoughtful. I won’t apologize for having a voice. If you don’t want to read what I have to say…don’t.

I like to take the high road, as my amazing parents taught me to do, knowing that not every scenario will work out in my favor.  I cannot complain about life – I’m no different from anyone else who faces ongoing, day-to-day hardships. I’ve put my photos and thoughts on the internet for my own reasons, but that doesn’t make me superior, nor does it make me right, per se…but I am still allowed to share them.

When I think about my friends, family, colleagues and even strangers I encounter, I like to believe that we are all innately kind-hearted at our cores, and just trying to get by…we’re doing our best.

As Billy Joel says in the song posted above, “You can’t be everything you want to be before your time.” My friend Liz also describes the message I’m trying to share perfectly in her Instagram bio, “Don’t compare your behind the scenes life with other people’s highlight reel.” So true.

Lately I feel the internet is encouraging a distorted view about what life should be like, rather serving as a platform for inspiration, support, and open conversation – something we need now more than ever. There are many bloggers who post staged content, laced with glitter, portraying a false reality of what life should be. Superiority complexes are masked by illusions of rainbows and butterflies, and updates about cupcakes are hypnotizing followers for the sake of getting that extra “like”. But there are also a handful of content creators who aren’t playing that game. It bums me out that there’s now a stigma attached to the whole thing.

I have a therapist in NYC who I do video chats with on the regs. She keeps me “sane”. A friend asked me the other day if I thought she needed to see a psychologist because she continuously pushes away men and, when meeting new people, she’ll try and and scope out a dark side before looking for their light. She also happens to be one of the most grounded, level-minded people I know, but my answer was a solid “yes”. I feel that all of us can benefit from talking about our lives with someone qualified to provide insights as to why we might be feeling certain things or acting out of character. Sometimes it is hard to pin down what is triggering specific emotions, and it’s good to vocalize what’s going on in our busy minds. Not only to help figure out why you feel a certain ways, but also what you can do to improve and live a happier life. Nobody should feel a need to trap their demons…it’ll only make them multiply. So whether you choose to do so on the internet, with a parent, sibling, friend, behind closed doors with a professional, or all of the above…vent.

I have been going to therapy for as long as I can remember, but it wasn’t until I met the right woman, back when I was living in the City about 3 years ago, that I finally got it. Finding a good shrink is seriously a lot like dating – it took me ages to meet “my match”. But now that I have it’s significantly transformed my general outlook. She’s the reason I started writing (and, sure, sometimes rambling). Now I have a closet filled with journals, and some of the content isn’t even that bad. I’m also working on a bigger literary project as, thanks to her, writing has become my favorite pastime.

To sum it up, remember that you are unique and rad, just as you are. But stay grounded and acknowledge the things  you want to improve upon. Don’t stop trying. We all have weaknesses, and the ones who pretend they don’t are probably in a lot more trouble than those who aren’t scared to admit it.

Don’t be ashamed to express yourself! If you’re genuinely happy, awesome and congratulations. But if you want more, don’t settle with where you’re at because that’s where society says you’re supposed to be. Forget the rules. Something or someone good will come along, trust me. If you live with bright eyes, an open heart, ambition, honesty, love (for yourself and others), and an ongoing desire to move forward, eventually the broken pieces will fall into place.

Keep your passion. Keep your pride. Keep on dreaming. And remember that “only fools are satisfied”. You aren’t a fucking fool.

Keep On Truckin’

1 Dec

Keep On Truckin’

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Denim on denim, boyfriend jeans, oversized jacket, vinatage truck, west coast roadtrip
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Denim on denim, boyfriend jeans, oversized jacket, vinatage truck, west coast roadtrip
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Denim on denim, boyfriend jeans, oversized jacket, vinatage truck, west coast roadtrip
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Denim on denim, boyfriend jeans, oversized jacket, vinatage truck, west coast roadtrip
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Denim on denim, boyfriend jeans, oversized jacket, vinatage truck, west coast roadtrip
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Denim on denim, boyfriend jeans, oversized jacket, vinatage truck, west coast roadtrip

I have been doing some personal reflection lately, after falling into a somewhat disgruntled frame of mind — a state of being which has actually become an unwelcome tradition for me this time of year. It tends to start out that way, at least…

When it comes to my personality, I’m stubborn and far from complacent. In describing myself as such I am not being self-deprecating — the opposite, in fact. When things go wrong, I do everything possible to try and find a solution. 2016, however, has probably been my strangest year to date (and trust me when I say there have been some pretty weird ones). The past 11 months were filled with experiences I will never be able to comprehend or resolve. Some of them terrible and some of them beautiful beyond words. Throughout the process, I have learned to accept that not every problem has a solution and that, in itself, is a big step. Also, I am now capable of finding joy in the “little things” I used to disregard. Don’t let a day go by without looking around and appreciating what you have. Sometimes its the fleeting moments and unexpected memories that pull you through tough times.

When I find I’m falling into a rut, I have to credit myself for never ceasing to at least make an attempt to do something about it. I’ve traveled — roaming around Europe, as I did last year, or taking a road trip, like I have done many times before. Nothing clears my mind and helps me organize my thoughts more than going on a road trip – driving anywhere, everywhere, nowhere…taking in new surroundings and getting to know inspiring people on a deeper level, along the way.

Everyone sees life through a different lens, and has gone through something you have not. I am a firm believer that we can never stop learning from others, if we approach the world with an unbiased mind and a welcoming heart. You’ll meet the right ones when you least expect it. Maybe they’ll open your eyes to an important part of life you were previously blind to. Perhaps you’ll find yourself revived by a story that moves you or be inspired by their unique approach to viewing the world and overcoming hardships.

While I by no means look forward to this recurring loss of creative energy, inevitably accompanied by an indescribable feeling of emptiness, I must say that each time I have gone through it (and done something about it) in the past, I have come out more revitalized and prepared for what is yet to come — in life, love, loss and any other unpredicted twist or turn.

Life is fucking weird, and it’s also what we make of it. So I decided to head out, yet again, on a random journey…starting with a night the hills of Malibu, sleeping in a Mongolian yurt at Great Spirits Ranch (highly recommend). After that I continued up North for a week and a half…spontaneously stopping at a couple familiar spots, while also seeing a few incredible new ones. I find it best to steer clear of redundancy. Travel and taking in the new will help fill those empty gaps and put you back on the right path, even if it is a different one than you expected to be on.

I learned a lot along the way and look forward to sharing more about the rest of my journey…stay tuned!

*head to toe: Ray-ban Clubmaster sunglasses, Citizens of Humanity boyfriend jacket, The 5th Brooklyn watch, T by Alexander Wang Superfine v-neck tee, Citizens of Humanity Melanie wide-leg crop jeans, Jacob Ankle boot via Urban Outfitters, Ringo the Dog via @RingoKnows

On The Prowl

11 Nov

On The Prowl

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Necktie blouse, wide-leg silk pants, cocktail attire, West Village loft, champagne, strappy sandals, ombre hair
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Necktie blouse, wide-leg silk pants, cocktail attire, West Village loft, champagne, strappy sandals, ombre hair
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Necktie blouse, wide-leg silk pants, cocktail attire, West Village loft, champagne, strappy sandals, ombre hair
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Necktie blouse, wide-leg silk pants, cocktail attire, West Village loft, champagne, strappy sandals, ombre hair
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Necktie blouse, wide-leg silk pants, cocktail attire, West Village loft, champagne, strappy sandals, ombre hair

While in NYC, I had the pleasure of teaming up with an awesome UK-based company, SpareRoom, as they take their recent US expansion by storm. The founder is an awesome dude, Rupert Hunt, who’s just hopped his way across the pond, moving from London to Manhattan, and is renting an incredible loft on Bleecker (where these photos were taken).

Rupert is a firm believer that life is more fulfilling when shared with the right people…a sentiment I can certainly get on board with (whether we’re talking about roommates, friends, or any other little life enjoyments). SO, Mr. Hunt decided to launch a campaign to find two roommates to enjoy his new luxury loft with at a rent cost of just $1 a month…fo real.

While the opportunity to score one of those golden spots has sadly come and gone, there’s gonna be more where that came from as they continue to grow!

SpareRoom is an incredible service that’ll help you find the perfect person / people to build a happy home with, whether you are looking to move or have a vacant room you need to fill. I know firsthand how tough this can be in the city…so consider them your saving grace.

If you live in NYC and are on prowl for the right people for a space-share, be sure to swing by one of their weekly Speed Roommating events (yep, kinda like speed dating, but without the awkwardness and pressure). Extra bonus is my dear friend David coordinates them and he’s super fun! So if nothing else you’ll walk away with a rad new buddy at the end of the evening.

head to toe: Zara neck-tie blouse (similar style HERE), HALSTON Heritage lightweight flowy culotte w/ slits (similar style HERE), Bernardo Blythe ankle strap sandals

PHOTOS BY TUTES

For No One

19 Sep

For No One

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Athletic cardigan, activewear, triangle bra, sleepwear, french bulldogs, interior decor, messy ponytail, french windows
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Athletic cardigan, activewear, triangle bra, sleepwear, french bulldogs, interior decor, messy ponytail, french windows
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Athletic cardigan, activewear, triangle bra, sleepwear, french bulldogs, interior decor, messy ponytail, french windows
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Athletic cardigan, activewear, triangle bra, sleepwear, french bulldogs, interior decor, messy ponytail, french windows
Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Athletic cardigan, activewear, triangle bra, sleepwear, french bulldogs, interior decor, messy ponytail, french windows

Los Angeles, NYC Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Athletic cardigan, activewear, triangle bra, sleepwear, french bulldogs, interior decor, messy ponytail, french windows

Its sad but true that many of us spend days, months, and even years trying to love the wrong people. We give our hearts and thousands of tears to others who, intentionally or unintentionally, cause us ongoing pain that we willingly endure. Sometimes this pain, conflict and confusion can be so emotionally derailing that eventually you’ll stare in the mirror only to find the reflection looking back is a total stranger.  You’ll recognize the fact that you’ve been doing things and acting in ways that make you feel ashamed, and it’ll probably hit you all at once, like a ton of bricks. It is not all his or her fault, nor is it yours. But if / when this happens, consider it a wakeup call and an opportunity to turn things around. But this time, do it for yourself.

Why do we let this happen? Because we love them. Because we’ve convinced ourselves that their happiness is all that matters, or allowed their weaknesses to become our own. Ultimately this deteriorates confidence and encourages an internal misconception that we aren’t good enough or that we don’t deserve kindness. It leads us to feel like we are not special…that we’re inadequate and unloveable. NONE OF THIS IS TRUE.

“Selfish” isn’t a bad thing, when you find yourself giving far greater than you know you’ll ever receive (and I don’t mean supporting someone you care about through hard times, I am talking about the “big picture”). Sometimes in order to preserve dignity and a stable, happy existence, you must accept that the person you’ve opened your heart to is incapable or unwilling to reciprocate…but that doesn’t make you flawed.

You may even come to find that, as much as you might love someone, you are actually SO drastically different that things you feel are vital to building a sustainable, long-term relationship (things like “trust” and “compromise”), are admittedly irrelevant to them. When my ex told me that he didn’t believe in compromise, and that trust, for him, was not essential when it came to his relationships (friendly or romantic), my first thought was “are you twelve years old?”, and my second was that I should go running for the fucking hills.

I cannot claim that my views are right and his are wrong (trying to be neutral here, but by all means I am open to hearing your opinions). However, I will say that these are two values I, personally, feel are pretty much essential. I know in my heart that I could never live my life with someone who doesn’t comprehend or, at the very least, respect this. I’d forever be walking on eggshells and wondering if the words he told me were true. No, thank you.

I think it is also important to remind ourselves that we cannot change people, nor should we even attempt to. It is a lost cause and a waste of energy (especially if they are “anti-compromise”). We don’t match up with others so that we can “save them” or make them what we personally consider to be “better” — because these things are subjective and that would be completely unfair. A couple doesn’t have to see eye-to-eye on everything (in fact, that sounds frightening and also boring), but when two people who are in a relationship have such drastically different standards and viewpoints on fundamental topics, there is no way to move past it. Lesson learned.

I have had two pretty serious relationships in my life. The first one didn’t work out, but I look back on it fondly. The second was different, though. Most of the time it didn’t seem real, and I very rarely felt my heart was in a safe place. They are both GOOD men, who I respect for different reasons. I sincerely believe they wanted and tried to make me happy in their own, very different ways, while maintaining a desire to find personal happiness at the same time — fair enough. There were plenty of outrageous and unforgettable times that I will always treasure. But when it came to a point where the bad times outweighed the good, we should have called it quits. It was like trying, over and over again, to catch a pretty cloud and failing miserably…then the rain would start to pour.

In my most recent relationship, the good times were so good, that we kept on going because neither of us wanted to face the discomfort and sadness of accepting we were incompatible and it was time to let go. It took hitting rock bottom for this relationship to come to an end. And while it has been extremely difficult, it also feels like a weight is being lifted…sometimes, not always — but each day it gets a little easier, I suppose.

I feel I can breathe a little deeper and that parts of me I subconsciously let slip away are starting to make their way back. We were lovers, enablers, best friends (in my mind, not his – which he frequently pointed out), enemies, and weird, silly, stupid companions, all at the same time. We had nicknames and secrets and inside jokes that will only make sense to us, and there are so many things I already miss about him. But we were broken beyond repair.

We are both kind hearted people who care about one another deeply, but oftentimes we failed to show it. We were sad, desperate and addicted. We couldn’t ever NOT come back to one another, but with every additional attempt to “try again”, we were welcoming in more unneeded pain. Instead of taking on obstacles as a team, we turned against each other, until the biggest struggle of them all became a battle between the two of us, and one that would have no winner.

I hope you don’t find yourself in a situation like this — with someone for 4 years who cannot say they love you, unless under pressure, in which case they will cringe as they utter the words I’ve personally found to be so natural, happy and easy to speak…because they were true. Toward the end, I would say “I hate you” in a loving tone, like one would use when speaking to a puppy who doesn’t know what the words mean, just that they are nice. This seemed to make him feel more comfortable reciprocating the sentiment. The thought that I did this regularly in our final months, because it was the only way I could get a response, sickens me (and I take full blame for this masochistic, desperate move). However, when pressed by uncertainty so intense where you lose sight of yourself, or place unfair expectations on others because it is what you want, people act out in crazy ways. And yeah, I am kind of crazy. But that doesn’t mean any of this was right.

With every hardship we can grow to become better, stronger people (if we allow ourselves to embrace these opportunities). Even when you feel like you are burning alive in the pit of fucking hell, just try and look for the silver lining. It might feel like the world is over, but how about this…maybe it’s actually just beginning. You are giving yourself another chance to start fresh…and that is really exciting, if you think about it!

So appreciate your experiences — the good and the bad. When you are down and out, remind yourself that being alone is the perfect time to get back in touch with who you truly are — who you were, who you’ve become and who you ultimately want to be.

Treat yourself with respect and only accept the kind of love you know you deserve. Make an effort to be a better companion in the future by fixing the things you realize you did wrong the last time around (nobody’s perfect). And don’t give up just because something you wanted so desperately didn’t work out. He’s gone, you don’t need him, but rest assured he won’t forget you.

*head to toe: Pivotte Good-to-Go Cardi (love, love, love this brand / piece – definitely check out Pivotte Studio…cute, low maintenance product for high performing women), Sloane & Tate Paradise Cove Bra, pajama shorts from Monoprix, Frenchie (and photos) c/o Alexandra Petruck

Paris Is Always A Good Idea

8 May

Paris Is Always A Good Idea

New York City, Los Angeles, Paris Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Leather hat, denim jacket, structured satchel, striped sweatshirt, black skinny jeans, leather booties
New York City, Los Angeles, Paris Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Leather hat, denim jacket, structured satchel, striped sweatshirt, black skinny jeans, leather booties
New York City, Los Angeles, Paris Fashion, Lifestyle, Travel Blog: Leather hat, denim jacket, structured satchel, striped sweatshirt, black skinny jeans, leather booties

If you follow me on Instagram, you may have noticed I left Paris. It was a magical year well-spent, and I’m so glad I took that giant leap outside of my comfort zone back in April of 2015…embarking on a European excursion, which I’ll remember for the rest of my life. Saw so much beauty, made incredible friends, and grew stronger as an individual throughout the process.

I’ve returned to California, the state where I was born and raised. Happy to be closer to family, soaking up the sunshine, and taking on a brand new professional adventure as Director of Digital Marketing for Citizens of Humanity. With plenty of amazing memories in my pocket, I couldn’t be more excited for this next chapter, and am readier than ever to take on yet another city. So here’s to living, and new experiences…to taking the the surprises and opportunities life throws at you and running with them without hesitation.

If there’s one thing I am good at, it’s adapting…and only two weeks in, I feel right at home here in Silverlake. But…needless to say, Paris is always a good idea. <3

*head to toe: Lock and Co. Hatters felt & leather cap (more amazing hat styles HERE), Paige Denim Rowan Jacket (additional denim jackets HERE), BB Dakota Reeza Boyfriend Blazer (shop more black blazers HERE), Cotton:On striped sweatshirt (CLICK HERE to for more great sweatshirts), Strathberry MC Midi in Vanilla, 3X1 high-waisted skinny jeans (click HERE for more black denim), Acne Pistol Booties (additional black leather booties HERE)