Good morning y'all, Among the Willowz here, wishing you the happiest of Sundays! Before I dive in, I want to briefly explain to you how my last year has gone.
This last year has been full of so many new things for Daniel and I, some trials & tribulations, if you will. In March of 2018, we took the plunge of moving in together. In the same week, Daniel's father, Jeff, passed away. I'll never forget the moment we got the call. We were laying in bed after a long night of partying in town for St. Patricks day, watching a movie. A Wyoming number painted across our landline caller ID. We thought for sure it was Jeff, calling to arrange plans for us to pick him up from the bus station as Daniel just drove to WYO with him so that he could care for his elderly mother. The voice on the phone asked for "Daniel Shannon McKenzie," that in itself, was weird. No one ever refers to Daniel with his middle name. She called to inform us of his passing, the heartbreak & sadness that swept over the love of my life was like nothing I have ever experienced before. The sadness he still feels from losing his best friend and go to in this life, still weighs heavily on us weekly, even.. daily. To say this has been hard on Daniel and our relationship, would be putting it lightly.
Fast forward to the month of November, Daniel and I made some serious decisions to buckle down and change our life. We were ready for a new beginning that rid him of this lingering sadness he, and we were all feeling. This isn't something that we feel comfortable sharing quite yet. The whole experience went from fun times, to heartache, to hope in our future and a new found love for life. It's a constant thing we are working on. It's caused anxiety, depression, arguments, long nights and in the end, love. We missed thanksgiving together. It was hard being without him, that's for sure. I was able to spend thanksgiving with his family while he was away though, there is always so much love surrounding their family. It made it a little easier for me. I am actually in the car with my boyfriends family driving through Blackfoot, ID as I write this. We are on our way to WYO, as Daniels grandmother has passed and Daniel and his siblings are the last family that she had. It sounds so weird to say, but we are happy for her. She is now in the best of places that we all dream about, enjoying the company of her boys that she dedicated her life to. Jeff and his father.
Phew, that was a lot. AmiRight?
The reason I am telling you all of this, is because a Facebook memory popped up last night while on our way to Pocatello.
Here was my entry on this day, last year, in 2018.
"I want to put something out there for you. It's going to be real and it's going to be raw. And no, I don't mean real and raw as in "surprise! I don't wear makeup and I live in sweats 99% of the time." That shit is not real anymore, fashionista. We know this. We know you are real, we know there is a real life human being behind your social media page. What I mean by real and raw, is getting down to the nitty gritty of real life. It's being broke as hell, barely getting by month to month. It's being the 3rd of the month and having $60 dollars to last you until the 18th. It's suffering from severe depression and anxiety, crying yourself to sleep at night. Not knowing why your sad but just knowing your heart aches 24/7. Not knowing if you can go on to the next day. It's going through a divorce because the one person that you vowed to love every day for your whole life under God himself, had an affair on you with your very best friend in life, your sister. Its losing your mother or father way too soon. It's staying with someone even though they verbally, mentally & physically abuse you. Its your parents divorce tearing your family completely apart. It's dreading holidays because all you want is for it to be the way it was when you were young. Its finding out a loved one has cancer and knowing that their fate is death and watching them live their last days in excruciating pain and heart ache. It is a soldier away on tour that is missing his family & loved ones. Its going for runs to escape your depression but literally crying the whole time because you cannot escape the monster inside of you called, anxiety. It's knowing your close friend is being cheated on but not saying anything because you don't want them to hurt. It's the single girl going out with random dudes because she's lonely and doesn't know how to cope with coming home to an empty home that is full of silence and her slow and muttered breathing through her tears and running nose, are the only sounds going through the hallways of her home. It's laying your best furry friend to rest that slept with you and snuggled you through all of your hard times & was the truest friend you've ever known. Its calling your mama 3 times a day because you just feel like you’re at your wits end in this life and you just want her voice to soothe you. It's being an exhausted mother who never gets a moment to herself and is under appreciated by her significant other. It's having your car break down and spending your whole months bill money to fix it and getting your power turned off because of it.... and still owing the mechanic $600 more dollars. Its gaining a few extra pounds and making yourself feel worthless and ugly over it. Its asking your dad to help you pay some bills because you can’t do it all on your own. It's living in a secluded place, wondering if you'll ever find someone to love you like you know you're capable of loving them. It's drinking your liver away because that is the only thing that drowns your sorrows. Its your friends wondering why you don’t go out anymore, is it because you don’t want be friends anymore? No it’s because your depression & anxiety have taken over every inch of your body, making it unbearable to get out of bed, let alone leave the house. Its constantly feeling that you're a failure to your family and just living with it. Its trying to keep a positive attitude when everyone around you complains about first world problems, when there are so many deeper things in life to worry about. THAT SHIT IS REAL. And there are so many more situations that are real. I don't know when this world became so fake, it is so saddening to me. I watch gals call one another best friends, yet literally the next hour, say horrible and heartbreaking things about the other person when that person thought that they had a true friend in them. I watch people spend their life savings on, don't get me wrong.. beautiful pieces. But for what? To show everyone on your social media that you can afford it? That you've got the same style as everyone else? Plump them lips and prop them boobies for social media, girl. Show the world how into yourself you can possibly be, even though deep down you are insecure and you're just making an image for yourself. Some of these are experiences of my own, some are others
that are close to me, some are of people i know that are everyday people who live their life day in and day out, just as you do. I know for certain that I’ve been guilty of dwelling on things in life that are not important and portraying an image of myself that is so to say, “perfect.” I am challenging myself in 2018 to be the realist me that I can possibly be and understand that everyone in this life goes through hard times. I will try my best not to judge anyone before I know their situation because I would hope that people would do the same for me. I am challenging myself to take a step back from social media and to focus more on things in life that truly matter. My literal life savers; my amazing boyfriend, my two fur babies, my family, my God, my true friends. Exploring, seeing the real world first hand.. nature, standing history. I'm challenging you to do the same. When you get down to the basics and see the blessings that come from your hard times... it is so rewarding. You will find someone who loves you. You will get that raise. You will find true friends. You are great now, but you will become even greater. Stay positive, pray about your problems and your hurting heart. God will listen. But most of all, in 2018, know that you are not alone in your sorrows and that things indeed, will get better. #Bless"
I remember this night vividly. I wrote this passage while experiencing a mental break down. I was crying the whole time while writing this. I was in my underwear and a sweatshirt, sitting on my side of the bed sobbing. It wasn't pretty. There was snot, makeup, sweat, dry heaving. I had myself so worked up. I kept texting my mom, my dad and Daniel. I was telling them how sad I was but when they asked why, in the exact moment.. I didn't have an answer. I thought, this is depression, this is anxiety. This is who I am destined to be and I just have to accept it. But I didn't want to. Although I had painted a pretty face for the world, I didn't want to accept that my ex husband and my sister, my "best friends" had an ongoing sexual affair for over a year while we were still married, I didn't want to accept that a few years prior, my mom and dad had gotten a divorce that caused my family to be completely broken apart to where some of us don't even speak to one another anymore, I didn't want to accept the fact that my dad was now a mean, rotten, drunk that would do and say that most insane things to hurt you because he couldn't find it in his heart to get over his divorce. I didn't want to accept the fact that my mom moved over a thousand miles away to get away from the bad memories and shitty people that wouldn't leave her alone to live her life in peace. I couldn't accept that a year prior when I moved out of my dads house after my divorce to get out on my own again and work my boutique, that someone had been watching me move in so that they could steal $40,000 dollars worth of personal items and boutique inventory from my new rental while i took a break from work to celebrate my aunts birthday with her in Reno. I didn't want to accept that even though I was 128 pounds, i still was feeling extreme self-esteem issues from my divorce that left me questioning my self worth all together. I didn't want to accept any of it. Though I had a boyfriend that loved me more than anything in this world...
I wanted to kill myself.
I sat on the side of my bed in my bedroom, in my quiet home that was home to just my dogs and I. I had my dads glock in my right hand. It was loaded and I was ready to end my sorrows. "This is it Lynlee. Don't be a pussy, just do it. End this heartache. All you want to do is sit around and feel sorry for yourself. People have to be sick of you by now, sick of your pity parties." I sat there and I started to think of the after math, just then my amazing fur babies ran into my room in a whirlwind. They were playing. They were happy. Though they had spent countless hours licking my tears away, cuddling me when i couldn't get out of bed. Staying in their kennel for countless hours because I had to go to work my shit job and drown my sorrows in alcohol while i bartended to "try" and make ends meet. They didn't care. They still loved me more than anything in this life. And I was going to kill myself so that they could come into the room once they heard a gunshot, to find my lifeless, bleeding, messy body. My dad probably finding me and having to call my mom with the devastating news that she had lost yet another daughter but this time, this time one of them was completely gone. Dead. Because she couldn't handle the stressors that life was throwing her way. She gave up. Lynlee gave up and she killed herself. My mom will feel guilty for life, probably even want to take her own life over it. How could I do that to her? How could I inflict my selfishness and pain on others? I can't. I cant do it. and so I didn't. It wasn't but a minute later that my phone went off. It was a text from Daniel and it was a long one. It was him telling me how proud he is of me, how he loves me more than anything in this world, how he knows how strong I am. That wasn't it, there was much more encouraging words at that. and to think. I almost let it all go. But those thoughts of my dogs my mom and Daniel, they saved my life.
Daniel doesn't know this.. so he will be quite surprised when he reads this. No one knows this. I am telling you this because I want you to look at where I am at now. How I turned my life around for myself. How I stopped holding onto things in the past that didn't work out for me because GOD didn't want them too. God put me through all of these different seasons because he knew that I was strong enough to handle them. He will continue to put trials in our path, too. Because this life, its a journey and a learning experience. Sometimes, God puts these life stressors in your life so that He can open your mind and show you how truly blessed you are. You have to look at the big picture. You have to look at EVERY experience in this life, trial or not, and take the silver linings from it. YOU HAVE TO. Other wise, you will become your own demise. Your mind will start to trick you into thinking and believing that you are not worthy of a damn thing. BUT YOU ARE. You are so worthy. And if life has knocked you down a few times, that's okay. Get up my girl. Get up, brush all of the negativity off. This is your life and today is the day that you take charge.
If you made it this far, I applaud you. Stay strong my girl, (or my guy.) We are all in this together, once we realize that.. the world is ours. I say that often, "the world can be yours." Say it out loud, "The world can be mine. Through the trials and tribulations, in this life, with a positive, encouraging mindset & belief in Gods path, my dreams and the world can be, mine."
Thank you for following along.
Happy trails, babe.
Hey, hey, y'all! Lynlee aka Among the Willowz here! You didn't think I would have another blog post ready to go so soon, now did ya?! Well, VOILA! Here I is, sista! It's the new year and watch out, I'm here to brain wash you into loving yourself for 363 more days..maybe even more.
Let's get to the good stuff, am I right? Alright. Show of hands, how many of you can look yourselves in the mirror and say that you genuinely and thoroughly love yourselves? Every "flaw." All of the stretch marks, dimples, rolls, double chins, extra inches of muffin top, your teeth, your skin, your lips, your eyebrows... Do you love what you see? What about inside, how are you feeling? What are you telling yourself? Positive thoughts or are you picking yourself apart?
Wait.. did you? Did you say no? You don't love what you see? You don't love how you feel? Those terrible thoughts, looking at your body in the mirror and wishing you could melt away in the puddle of self pity you have created for yourself. "I'll be poor forever because I didn't go to college." "I'm divorced, damaged goods." "I wish my butt were bigger, my boobs perkier, my stomach flatter!" "I'm so ugly, good Lord, just a fat hog." "Will anyone ever love me, if I can't even love myself?," I mean, it has to be true. That's what everyone says, right? I know the feeling, sugar. I knew that feeling. Most of those are words that I, too, have muttered from my sad lips.
Now do me a favor. Wipe those tears. clear your mind of those negative thoughts, pull your shoulders back and sit up straight. Wanna know why this is pertinent right here, right now in this moment? Because you're a bad ass bitch. That's why. You are thee baddest of all of the bitches, in fact. And we, you and I, we are on a mission to get your mind right so that you can free yourself of any negativity that you have been carrying for so long. This new year is not meant to be weighed down by issues you have been carrying from years past. It's going to be a process, I can promise you that. I can also promise you that once you learn to love yourself, the world is yours. you become invincible & boy is it worth it.
Here's just a couple steps that I have used to help me get on a path to loving myself. I hope that maybe, just maybe these two small actions can help give you a boost on your Journey to loving yourself. You can do this, my gal. I know it!
Try to make a habit of not caring what other people think of you.
For years and years, I used to constantly be worried what others were thinking of me. Whether they thought I was fat, ugly, cute, tan, had perfect teeth, perfect blonde hair, had money, had nice things, had this, had that. Ultimately, I just wanted to be accepted. I was so caught up in being accepted by certain people, that I completely lost myself. I found myself picking myself apart and saying the most despicable words to myself that I wouldn't even begin to say to my worst enemy. To put it frank, I hated myself. I beat myself so far down, that I didn't think my worth amounted to anything. Why am I even living? I'd give anything just to be done with this world. To not have to worry about others. Why don't they like me? What can I do to make them just.. like me for me? Am I really that weird? That unlovable? That answer is no. NO, none of those things are true. You're amazing just the way you are. You just have to see that. My mom has told me, you can be the ripest, juiciest peach in all of the land and someone will still not like peaches. It's true. You will not be for everyone because they do not think like you. They do not live their life like you do. Just because you're on a positive journey, does not mean others are in that place in their lives, too.
My boyfriend and I were talking about a different subject, but he told me that you can start a habit in 20 days with repetition. So you know what I did? I decided to bribe myself into thinking that I don't care what other people think. I started dressing just how I wanted, talking and caring on, just how I wanted. Quit my job, that I only had because I was afraid that by doing what I really wanted to do, that my parents would see me as a failure. Got a job at a recreational marijuana shop, yes I am an advocate and it was the best decision I have ever made. I started being the Lynlee that I am behind closed doors, out in the real world. It was freeing. The moment I started wondering about others and their thoughts on what they see when they look at me, I squashed that thought right there and then I moved on. The days started passing and before I knew it, day 20 passed too. I was already a brighter, happier Lynlee because I was presenting myself to the outside world just how I felt comfortable and guess what? My friends and neighbors hardly said a word! We all know i'm funky, so there are always a few small minds. No doubt. Other than those, nothing but one step closer to a happy me. You see, outsiders won't ever understand your story, but its not for them to understand. It's your life, and if you are causing no harm to anyone or anything, its none of their business. Point, blank, period.
Rid of all things that bring you negative vibes.
I sat down one day and had to really think. Why was I feeling so sad all of the time? What specific things are bringing me discomfort in my life? I got a note pad and I wrote them down. There were jobs, there were bills, there were thoughts, there was clutter, there was procrastination, there were even people. I promised myself that I would step back from all of the things that were in my power to step back from for two weeks. It took me about four days to not constantly think of those things, people and the repercussion it would have on my life to just let them be, let them be.. away from me. Once I did though, I was in a state of pure amazement. I gave up a job that was causing me stress in my wallet and on my commute. Phew, I can breathe a little easier. I cut out someone that only brought me down and never had anything good to bring to the table. PHEW, I can really flow now. Once I cut those two things out, I started tailoring my life to myself. I didn't have anyone or anything to hold me back from doing the things I love. My head was clearer. I could finally apply myself fully to my passion because I had zero negative vibes holding me back. You see, this life is yours. Yours only. No one else has the power to make you happy. Once you understand that and you set out on a path to make yourself happy.. you;ll realize that your only desire is to keep this new found peace, and hell. You may even want to spread it. Please, please do this for yourself. Distance yourself from anything that makes you feel sad, negative, inadequate. The things that are making you feel this way, those things are NOT for you. Once you realize this, its true. Your future is yours to create and your dreams will no longer be dreams because you're now in a head space to make them a reality.
What I am getting at here guys, is don't let outside things effect you on the inside. People don't think of you like you're thinking of them. That's a fact. Once you focus on perfecting yourself, your life, your happiness & well being... you will set yourself free.
I swear it.
Be sure to comment and share if m words helped you in any way. The power of sharing is unreal, we have to get these positive vibes out in the world! AMIRIGHT?!
Happy trails my gal,
Well hello there, I'm Lynlee.