Saying 'yes' to life can be adventurous and courageous and a million other things but after saying 'yes' for a couple of months now, the constant state of presentness /awareness/energy/potential anxiety can be scary, sometimes tiring, a constant dance between crying and laughing. I feel like Indiana Jones a la The Last Crusade where I have to take these steps of faith, crossing a black abyss. I feel that the universe has given me no choice but to say 'yes.' No wood bridge, no net, no ladder... just supreme faith.
When I feel in a funk, I tell myself that by the end of the day I'm going to be abundantly blessed. It's been working. On one particularly melancholy day, I announced to the universe (and to Facebook- ha!) that blessings were coming my way. Indeed, that day my boss told me I could use our commercial kitchen for personal use for free as long as it didn't mess with production. On another particularly rough work day (almost-lose-your-job rough work day), I came home to find this beautiful note from an Etsy customer I didn't know:
"These are so good they are wrong. Seriously! It's cakey and moist just a beautiful job all around. Nicely packed in the event you want to freeze, but these aren't going to last long. Thanks I will definitely return, your a wonderfully talented baker."
I've decided this is what it's all about. Expecting great things from your life and continually living in a way that challenges your current state of mind. Even when there is despair, there is something beautiful. The blessings always come.
Perfect example: TODAY WAS AWESOME.
It got cold here in Chicago and what I wanted to do was stay in my big sweatshirt and never leave my bed. I wanted to cry all day mourning the loss of a dead relationship and the loss of the comfort in a best friend. I wanted to miss my L.A. friends and family til I puked. I wanted to freak out about my finances, feel overwhelmed by my lack of social life here, stress out about living out of boxes. I wanted to throw a pity party that my birthday is soon and it's going to suck and that the holidays are coming-- my favorite time of the year and what I feel is the most romantic time of year-- and wallow in the awfulness that I'll be alone.
A LOT of thoughts is what I had the instant I woke up. None of those thoughts were the following: 'GOING TO THE DMV TODAY IS GOING TO RULE THE SCHOOLS!' or 'OH MY GOSH, I'M SO EXCITED ABOUT LIFE I COULD JUST BARF FAIRIES!!!'
So I felt all of those horrible feelings, thought all of those horrible thoughts and then chose for my day off to be a beautiful, stress-free day. Veronica wasn't around so I audibly said something like, "God, these are my thoughts & feelings. I don't want to be that person so I'm going to choose to go to the DMV with love- not fear or anxiety or drama. I'm going to love this awesome fall weather and let it feed my soul. Like a child, I'm going to find absolutely everything fascinating today."
Here's a poster I made when I first moved in. It's the first thing I see every morning and a daily reminder to channel my inner Ellie. (From the movie 'Up')
And here's what happened:
1. THE DMV-
Today I went to get my car registered. Long story short, I got a ticket not realizing my registration was up. I went immediately to get it taken care of. I was told back in April that I needed to have my old car registration and title in order for them to process registration. I then spent four months on the phone with CA DMV and my bank trying to get a copy of my title. If I added up all the hours I spent on the phone, it would probably equate to days, folks. And don't get me started on how many oceans could have been filled with my fragile, salty tears! Every time I sent them title paperwork it took them two months to process and return to me. Finally last week, completely at wit's end, I call the Secretary of State's Office & they tell me the information I received was incorrect. I just had to have my registration and the loan papers from my bank. WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT? You can imagine my 'dismay.' My registration is now 5 months past due. I'm going to be charged 8 million dollars in late fees due to bad intel on their part.
So today was the day to finally get my car registered. Rather than march in the office in anger and tears and drama with finger pointing and martyrdom (what I would typically do), I chose for everything to roll off my back. If it was going to cost $6,000, I wasn't going to let it ruin my day. It's fall outside!!! I LOVE fall!!! And I'd audibly talked to myself today for crying out loud! So I went. No line. A manager actually approached me. She listened to my story. She told me I needed to have my mom sign a form but that I had everything else I needed. She wrote down her name and told me to find her next time I was in. I was there maybe two minutes.
"But Tisha, will it be a million dollars cause of late charges?"
"Oh no. It'll just be the regular $197. There are no late charges."
Reason #4,394,944,096,585 I'm living in Chicago. In L.A., DMV workers like to scalp their mothers for fun! AND charge late charges.
2- PIMP MY ROOM!!!
Then I get an e-mail from my friend Dr. Beth. She says her & her hubbie JT would like to take me out to our favorite Mexican place for my birthday. SCORE!
But then the e-mail proceeds to go on about how they're going to 'pimp my room.' JT apparently wants to build me a bed frame. Whaaaaaat??? Right now I'm sleeping quite comfortably on mattresses on the floor but I do have to admit that having a bed frame would make me feel a little more like a 'gwown-up.' They've done some post summer/pre fall cleaning & are going to give me furniture they realize they don't use that I need-- a small wrought iron bookcase...
As you can see, my books have no home.
Dr. Beth's also gonna give me some plastic dresser drawers...
I knew you were coming over so I cleaned. (That's a joke but there'd be no where to put stuff anyway!)
Also she's giving me JT's easy chair (I have a feeling this is more for Dr. Beth than for me-- the wagon wheel table to their 'When Harry Met Sally' story, if you will). ;)
THEN! She also had this really nice piece of wood she bought for a shelving project that didn't turn out so well so she's going to MAKE ME A DESK. WHAT THE!? And then she's also got a down comforter and a white duvet and shams and... Can you believe it!??? I told her they had me at 'Mexican!!!' I was flabbergasted. They are such GOOD, WONDERFUL people. Thank you, God. ROOM, YOU'RE GETTING PIMPED!!! HOW EXCITED ARE YOU!!???
3- GARRETT'S POPCORN
I'm on all 99 Luftballoons after those transactions. The weight of the world off my shoulders... and I walk past Garrett's Popcorn. There's always a line. A 'Beverly Hills Sprinkles-esque Cupcakery' line outside of Garrett's. There was no line. So I bought this for $4.93. My favorite popcorn in the entire world. IN...MY...HANDS...
4- OLD NAVY
I have ZERO clothes. I pretty much got rid of everything when I moved to Chicago. I have one pair of jeans left that I think were my moms (I wish that was a joke) before I moved to L.A. and they're uncomfortably tight. I haven't gone shopping for myself in ages. AGES. I've just never had the money. And the two pair I had been wearing for the past 5+ years (I wish that were a joke, too!) had ripped and were completely done. Just worn to death. So I've been to Old Navy a couple of times because I had seriously turned into a Dockers commercial ("I wear no pants!!!") and have been desperate to CLOTHE MYSELF. I've found nothing. NOTHING. I'm short. I have a large can. And I have no money. It's made me not want to leave my apartment. Due to all these factors, I can't say I've necessarily enjoyed shopping anyway.
Today, they didn't have my size. For poodlies and hee-haws, I tried on a size lower. I found three pairs of jeans. Bam, bam, bam... all in a size lower than what I thought I'd be wearing. I mean... DMV- okay. Cool friends- okay. But jeans that fit!!??? WHAAAAAAAAAAAAT!!??? ;) I bought all three. One for work and two for my social life that I'm going to have.
It felt SO GOOD. It felt perfect. I can't remember the last time I made a purchase, even a staple item purchase I didn't feel guilty about. Today, it felt awesome.
5- MY NEW BOYFRIEND ELIJAH JORDAN WOOD!!!
Seriously, just 5 seconds ago my friend Nina posted to my Facebook that my long lost love Elijah Jordan Wood is also going through a break-up and is single. If you know anything about me, you should know the magical, significant scope of this news. ;)
Here is my boyfriend and I back in my L.A. apartment...
All that to say... This whole expecting blessings thing? Audibly talking to yourself like a crazy person? Mediating on everything you feel? Taking the time to mentally tell yourself you're NOT going to stress out because that's not taking care of yourself? It's working. I made this goofy list two months ago. Dr. Beth and my roommate have already knocked off quite a few things. I wonder who's gonna give me the house!!??? ;)
Magical things are happening, you guys. I can feel it. This is a major success story. :)
Love you (but Elijah Wood more),