I just turned on my laptop and looked at the time, and it says 3:44 am. I forgot for a second that I’m in London, and its almost 11 o’ clock. I was going to go back to sleep, but this random topic just came to my mind, and it wouldn’t go away;
so here I am writing.
Last night I went out with my friends, got tipsy off maybe 2 drinks (bcuz if you know me I never party & rarely drink), went back to the hotel and ate pizza while taking a bubble bath. I was actually going to take it up a notch and open up the wine bottle the concierge left in my room, but I couldn’t find the wine opener. So, I took it as a sign from God I didn’t need any more liquor and just had to settle for pizza and bubbles. Subtract the wine. (This makes for a great boomerang in case you were wondering. I mean, not like I’m going to post it or anything, but just trust me.)
I woke up thinking about guilt; how it has consistently impeded my life without a simple or logical reasoning behind it. That is, of course, what emotions are. They come and go, and are completely separate from logic. But that doesn’t make them any more clear, or easy to dissect and understand, when they just randomly seep in. This morning I was instantly brought back to my childhood; how regardless where I was, or what I had accomplished, a sense of guilt was something I carried with me like a proverbial backpack. Not one you can see, touch, or just take off and throw in the closet to go through and sort out later. One that you involuntarily carry with you, throughout all stages in your life; Except you only notice it on occasion, at the most inconvenient times; and you can’t just reach around, grab the straps and take it off.
It’s glued on.
There’s so many small parts in my writings that I touch on that need a blog of their own, to be fully understood; but all of our lives are like big puzzle.. Without adding in little pieces here and there, the picture wouldn’t be as clear; so please bare with me as I work through my ADD while working on becoming a good writer. Lol.
I’ve been on my own since I was 16 years old. I packed up a suitcase, and just left. I was still enrolled in high school, technically; but I was so unhappy and underwhelmed with the society norm. The monotony of what I was supposed to do; how I was supposed to act and what was expected of me, just left me yearning for so much more.
My junior year of high school I auditioned at a talent agency in the Twin Cities (an hour and a half drive away from the city I was from). I wanted to model and act, and I had done research for weeks trying to find a way out of the life I was living, and into something that I actually was passionate about. I skipped class to drive to my audition, all alone, without telling anyone; and I got a call a week or two later saying that I had been accepted.
So… I dropped out of high school.
I started doing little modeling jobs here and there, and I just knew that I wanted to get out of Minnesota. When I was 19 years old I flew out to Orlando for a modeling job. Once again, I had a single suitcase with my life and its entirety inside. I immediately immersed myself in the industry. I worked as a promo model full time; for companies like Rockstar Energy & Macallan Scotch, I cocktail waitressed at Roxy nightclub. I took modeling jobs (paid and unpaid) whenever I could; I got a job as a hostess at a restaurant at Universal Disney, and in between all of this I worked as a nanny to a family and their 3 kids.
I remember getting my first magazine cover, it was by “Suite 400 Magazine”, and my first ever company advertisement posters, with me as the face. (Those aren’t major accomplishments by any means, but at the time I worked so hard it was the symbolism.) It just lit this fire up inside of me. A fire of pride, of course, because I was so young just trying to make it on my own, doing what I loved. But a true fire, by nature, inevitably goes out; sometimes burning you on its way; and I was always living my life doing whatever I could to keep the fire ablaze.
Instead of being someone that sits back and enjoys the ‘fruits of their labor’, aka, take a moment to be proud of myself; I immediately needed to work towards the next thing. Nothing I did, once I had accomplished it, did I ever feel was ever worthy of an internal celebration (that lasted longer then 3 seconds).
Growing up, in my heart and soul I wanted so much for myself; A magazine cover. A publication. A column. To be on a TV show. To host my own show. But once I did all of those things, they became that; just things. Like a grocery list you type in your notes and then eventually forget about or delete.
I always carried with me this sense of guilt that I wasn’t doing enough. Not in the sense of validation, or lacking in self esteem; but for some reason, my internal compass just wouldn’t stay put. Nothing I had accomplished was enough. I craved so many things when I was younger, and once those things came to fruition, I was immediately looking for what was next. I remember sitting in the living room in Minnesota, watching the UFC fights thinking, “I want to be a be a ring girl. I’m going to be a ring girl one day.”
Fast forward, years later, I worked for Corona Boxing on the day of the Mayweather fight, in vegas. (I was a ring girl for multiple companies, and to this day it is one of my favorite jobs to date, but that was the one that stood out in my memory.)
Ever since I can remember, the stagnant feeling of guilt just followed me around like the plague. I’m writing so much about my innermost feelings on not doing ‘enough’, because at the base of that sentiment, [in my opinion anyways], is guilt. I remember being on vacation in the Dominican Republic with a group of my friends when I was 21. While everyone was sitting in the room just talking, partying, etc, I was trying to multitask and connect to the wifi so I could update and work on my modeling resume/portfolio.
There I was, in a beautiful hotel on a beautiful island, and my mind was thinking about jobs I was missing out on; and all the emails I wanted to work on to send to companies so they would want to book or sign me.
Fast forward to today. November 12, 2019. Waking up with this on my mind feels so visceral and nostalgic; I don’t know if it has to do with the fact that in a little over a month, I’ll have lived through 3 decades. (10 x’s 3 equals 30 years of age, but I’m a high school dropout so like…. What is math?). Maybe it has nothing to do with age, but everything to do with life experience, maturity, growing into your own person. Becoming more connected and aligned with the person you really are. (That might sound cheesy AF and if you know me you know I’m not at ALL a cheesy person lol)
Reflecting on the trajectory of my life I’ve come to the realization that no matter where you are in the world, you can’t escape your mind.
I think when we speak to others about life, and give our friends advice; we’re really just speaking to our younger selves. I don’t believe in regrets, and I hate when people say, “If I could go back in time, I would do this differently.” Because, I’m sorry for being the one that has to break the news to you, but you can’t go back in time. (Elon Musk has done a lot of mission impossible ish things, but time travel is not one of them. I DMed him but he has yet to respond so I’ll keep you posted on that one. If anything changes, you’ll be the first to know.)
Guilt is not a tangible thing. It’s not something you can grasp on to, physically, and throw far away from you like a basketball. But it’s something, once we can step outside of ourselves and reflect upon, that we can choose, moving forward, to no longer carry. Like all emotions, we will never have complete control. We were all made the way we were for a reason. I’m not saying that once you become self aware of a particular feeling, that you can immediately control it an make it no longer exist. But looking at my own life I’ve realized how much time I’ve spent, wasted time, on not just living in the moment.
I always said I wanted a spread in Playboy magazine. And I only wanted it if and when I took my breast implants out, so that I could show other women they don’t have to change themselves for society, just to be ‘beautiful’ or ‘accepted’. And I got a spread in Playboy magazine, 8 pages to be exact, after I took my implants out. Instead of being proud of myself or feeling accomplished, my immediate thought was, “Next time, I need to be on the cover.”
Even as I’m writing this, I can be transparent and just tell you that recognizing parts of ourselves that we (& myself, obviously) want to better is a life long journey; Change doesn’t just happen overnight. Waking up and realizing I’ve wasted so much of my life being hard on myself, not allowing myself to soak in and live in that moment, makes me realize how much I’ve let myself miss out on. (I’m a Capricorn so it’s in our nature to overthink, overanalyze, stay up night planning our next move, etc. lol) I’m learning to be present. To be in the moment. It probably sounds crazy, but I even have a hard time feeling ‘proud’ of myself because in my mind I have so much more left to accomplish.
So many mountains to climb.
We can’t control how our hearts feel, and we can’t control how our minds operate, or the thoughts that invade our head space when we’re idle. But we can make a conscious effort to change the dialogue, direction and narrative when that shadow of negativity or unease shows up unannounced.
It’s human to feel, over think, react; That’s what makes you, you. We can’t change who we are at the core; because that would take away our uniqueness. But maybe, when we’re on that ‘mountain’; instead of trying to rush to get to the top, with no breaks along the way, we can stop for a drink of  water and look back at the view. Stand back and admire how far we’ve come, how much strength it gives us knowing if we’ve gotten this far, and realize that the rest of the climb will be worth the struggle; without a side of guilt for needing a little break from time to time.