Final Goodbyes

In less than a week, I am officially moving to Montreal. My month there over the summer was a little dip into the water that is French Canada. Now, it’s time for me commit and dive right into the life of the Quebecious. Although I am eager, I am just as apprehensive. My moving situation isn’t ideal, but, with my family’s help, I’m going to make it work.

My good friend Laryssa and I sat down to have lunch today. We went to her favorite restaurant and talked about how wild our summers had been, how excited we were about the new paths in our lives, and how much we were going to miss each other. Even though we are both confident that this won’t be the last time we are together, there is a bittersweet feeling of final goodbyes.

Final goodbyes come in many different forms. This specific type of goodbye was the one where we said farewell to our beginnings. We met in a dance studio, covered in dirt and sweat after rolling around on the floor for 90 minutes during a modern class. We were giddy with endorphins and excited to be finally talking to each other after two months of taking classes together. Friendship comes in peculiar forms, but the stranger the better. She quickly became a very important person to me.

Today, as we waved to each other in the parking lot, I could feel those memories squeezing my heart. I would give so much to go back to those days of laughter and simplicity. I won’t say the world was a different place, but I will say that my mind has been shaped by it over the years. I will miss her, just not in the way you would think.

Goodbyes can also mean new beginnings. I have no doubt that Laryssa and I will continue to grow alongside each other, developing new memories and passions as we do so. I am unbelievably grateful to have her in my life. I don’t think I would have kept dancing if she hadn’t encouraged me. Her impact on my life continues to be as profound as the day I met her.


Give it a Minute

In a lot of my work, I tend to get caught up in the idea of efficiency. I want to get things done well in as little time as possible. This type of work style is useful at showing my employers and supervisors how committed and hardworking I am, but sometimes it can cause a loss of creativity. Other times, when things can’t be done right away, or a decision has to wait until more information is available, this mindset can cause me a lot of stress.

I am officially moving in 8 days, which hasn’t quite hit me yet. As I continue to pack my belongings into suitcases, the fact that my room will cease to be my space and become inhabited by the rest of my family has been itching at the back of my mind. The stress of leaving behind everything that is familiar to me has contributed a lot to my general levels of anxiety.

I’ve been taking on more work, more ballet classes, and more little tasks around my house to keep my mind off of things. However, as I try to avoid the approaching date, I find that time seems to be moving very slowly. I try to speed it up by replying to my emails quickly and getting my work in before the deadline, but I have failed to recognize that those I work with aren’t experiencing the same kind of expediency caused by stress.

For the past week, I’ve been waiting on making a decision about something. I needed some time, some counseling, and some more information before I could decide. This decision upset both my family and me as it conflicted with some prior commitments I made. So, I held off from doing anything about it until I could get the info I needed. It was difficult for me to not act on my options immediately, but holding out was definitely the right thing to do.

Patience often reaps more benefits than impulse. It is probably better to get your work in ASAP and be as efficient as possible, but I have learned that this is not the case with making commitments. You should ponder your choices and gather as much information as possible before choosing between your options. Unless you’re sure of what you want to do, you should wait until you feel confident in your decision. I know I’m glad I did.


Wake Up Calls

Early is a relative term, but 6:30am is early for me. 6:30am also happens to be the time I woke up this morning. I schedule an 8am private lesson and a 10am appointment that were both 45 minutes away from my house.

Sometimes I do this. I schedule things early to get myself out of bed and reinforce a sleeping pattern. This summer, my sleeping habits weren’t horrible, but I know I’m going to need to shift into school mode soon.

Today was a wake-up call, as it took me twice my normal amount of coffee to be functioning. I worry that I am simultaneously becoming dependent on caffeine and developing bad resting habits.

Either way, I’ll be getting a little more sleep tonight.


Show Up and Produce

There’s some quote that circulates on Facebook every once and a while and it goes something like this: “Showing up is 98% of the job.” When I was younger, I thought this quote was ridiculous. In my mind, showing up was the least difficult part of anything. However, my senior year definitely showed me that sometimes getting out of bed and convincing yourself to work can be the most difficult part of your day.

That’s why my first goal of every day is to show up in my own life. Show up to my closet, show up to my bathroom, show up to my kitchen, show up to my desk, to my hike, to my responsibilities. It’s my way of promising myself that I am going to work on whatever I need to accomplish. If I promise myself that showing up is 98% of the work, then I know that I’ve gotten past the hard stuff and I only need to complete the last 2% of my work. That 2% varies in length and quantity every day, but it is one of the only tricks that works for me.

Despite the mind games, this is a good idea to remember. Many many people will not apply, not reach out, and not show up because they doubt themselves or their abilities. By showing up and having a moderate amount of confidence in what you can do, people will be willing to listen to you. Employers and important people want to work with those who will show up and produce. Everyone can promise to be there and do something, but it’s up to you to act on that promise and prove that you’re not all talk.


Smell the Roses

I went hiking again today and noticed that I was checking my watch a lot. I love to track my time and see how I’m progressing in my strength and stamina, but this level of tracking was excessive. I started to become more concerned with how quickly I was getting through the loop and stopped observing the world around me.

As I got close to the end, I almost missed a doe running up the trail. Her and I both stopped and watched each other for a moment. My dog stood beside me instead of running at her like he usually would have. The whole moment felt frozen and mystically beautiful, like something out of a Lord of the Rings movie. I thought about how I had been checking my watch right before I saw her and wondered if I missed her do something spectacular.

Deer aren’t special creatures in my mind, they’re actually kind of a pest. For being a pest though, they’re hard to catch a good glimpse of, especially up close. I find myself still wondering what else I may have missed while worrying about how fast I had made it through the trail.

There is a time and place to track your progress. There is also a time and place to stop and observe the world around you. I’ve always enjoyed seeing my progress, so I always hated it when people would tell me “stop and smell the roses.” As much as I hate to admit it, progress doesn’t mean anything if it doesn’t supplement your happiness. Roses die, does run off, life continues on regardless of your observation. You have to appreciate the moments when you have the ability to catch it. Smell your roses today, for they could be wilted and grey tomorrow.