On turning 31
My birthday always feels more like the ‘new year’ than actual ‘New Years’.
For me, it’s a time to reflect, write, plan, ground, celebrate.
I find the month leading up to my birthday (especially in later years) rolls in hard and overwhelms me.
My gemini tendencies go wild and all my grounding comes unleashed. My lion mane grows and my heart rages.
There are always a ton of heart strings being pulled in every direction, emotions flying high and energy running rampant.
I am usually confronted with big things, decisions, demons and challenges that I need to face before I leap into the next year.
My usual reaction is to go big. Go on a trip, avoid the norm, surround myself with people I love and basically set myself up for an epic year to come.
Truth is, in the last few years I have made my birthdays so massive and avoided facing any kind of reality because of fear I wasn’t where I was meant to be. or so I thought…
Last year I was going to go home for my 30th and I didn’t.
I didn’t go because in my head I thought by 30 I would be in a different place.
A place that I wasn’t.
When I pictured myself turning 30 I saw something else.
I envisioned something so big. A party. A lover. A ring. A house. A business. Maybe pregnant?
But in reality I was single, in Hawaii with a small group of friends and had decided I was going to live in LA. Not bad! Right?!
But in my eyes I didn’t have much of anything but a yearning to make LA my home and a very confused heart.
I had said I would be living back in New Zealand by 30 to be closer to my family and settling back into life there.
And I didn’t do that and holy shit did I battle with this decision.
Why couldn’t I just go back to New Zealand and be? Be content? Be enough? Find love? Be with my family?
I was probably scared as shit to be “trapped” down at the bottom of the world and worried I couldn’t make enough money to be able to visit my friends in America and do all these amazing things I had dreamt about for so long.
I bet myself up so long for the decisions I made. Twisted and turned in my head.
But I did it. I moved in. Built myself up slowly. Made a home. Made friends. Connected to life in a new place.
It has been a wild ride with a lot of trips home to New Zealand and so many incredible experiences.
As I sit here writing, reflecting on my decisions a year later I can actually smile knowing I took this leap of faith and stayed in the USA.
Truth is, for five years I cried on every single birthday because someone (usually my boyfriend at the time) had let me down.
Truth is, I fought for this life so hard that I can honestly say all the “big bad scary” decisions I’ve had to make have been the right ones for me at that time.
I am so aware of who I am — the many many sides that I have and I no longer judge this person I have become and am becoming.
I have had to push through layers of built up old habits learned from past relationships.
I have had to build walls to get over challenges and rise above life suckers.
Thrashed myself mentally doing something I am NOT good at just because it paid good money.
Been in ugly relationships with males because of the excitement and wildness.
Been so loved it scared me that someone could love me so much.
Stayed too long.
Maybe didn’t stay long enough.
But through all of this I have been able to see the light.
I have worn so many hats (and still do) that it gets confusing! Should I be a stylist because I love clothes? Should I made jewelry because I love creating? Should I be photographer because I love taking pictures? Should I produce photo shoots because that’s what I’m good at? Should I be a life coach because I truly love people? Should I be a yoga teacher because I’m certified?
The list goes bloody on and on. And then there’s this pressure of “being a boss lady”. Making money. Doing something COOL. Working for the coolest company.
But when you follow all of these pressure is when you end up sitting in a desk that you hate with people you don’t like and supporting something you dont believe in.
You have to listen to your gut and fucking believe in yourself. Ask yourself what is going to make you the happiest! Not make you the most money.
I can say today that yeah, I pulled the plug on relationships that probably were the best thing I could have asked for. I shut down jobs that could’ve been cool. Missed out on babies being born and people getting married. But I pulled the plug because I needed to plug in my own light and step into my fears and become the person I wanted to be.
I didn’t want the easy way (which can be the hardest way) and sure I get sad and miss people and wonder “what if” but I have fully accepted my weaknesses and pushed through. I have had dreams come true and learned some brutal life lessons.
And today I can say that
I am proud of myself.
I have worked and lived in New York.
Styled people and shoots.
Worked for dream clients.
Been whisked off to Thailand for work within a 5 hour notice.
Loved so hard.
Lost so hard.
Felt like I was dying on the path to growth.
Been careless and crazy.
What I do know is….
I teach yoga to give back.
I give out advice and love because I truly want to help.
I produce for big name brands and help smaller ones get off the ground because I love being busy, connecting people and I’m good at it.
I make jewelry and buy / sell vintage because I love it.
I have a tee shirt company with a friend because it’s fun.
And lately, I have fallen in love with taking photos because there is something so powerful about having a camera and capturing moments, light and telling a story.
I live a life that I love and I have so many different friends because I never want to pigeon hole my own growth.
I am always striving to learn more.
I want to inspire people to live the life they love.
I want to support the people I love.
I know that when I’m down I just need to go upside down, meditate and or go visit a friend.
I am still learning always to ...
Make fast decisions and stick to them.
Trust that GUT.
Have faith in myself and skills.
To step into my feminine and trust that the universe will provide.
That I am worthy of money and I know how to make it.
To get out of my head and into the world.
We all have stories and pasts that shape us but we do not have to let them define us.
Choose happiness and love always.
That people who care will show up. The rest don’t matter inside your small pocket of life.
Live your life for yourself and no one else.
Don’t owe anyone anything - it never works out well.
Focus brings reward. Consistency is everything.
You are not too cool for anything or anyone. and vice versa!
Whatever you project are just insecurities of your own. Work on your shit.
You know what you want. Take everything anyone says with a grain of salt and trust your gut.
If you can’t decide. Sit quietly and listen to your gut. Go with that.
If it’s not a hell yes, it’s a hell no.
The truth is. Age is never what you think it’s going to be. It’s just life choices.
I chose to live out some big dreams of mine for the last few years instead of marrying and maybe making babies.
I took the road less traveled and said yes to myself. I can never regret that.
And for the last two years no one has made my cry on my birthday.
I found and created my own happiness.
This is not to say I want to be single but I believe now more than ever I am ready to invite the right kind of love into my life.
And that took time. Decisions and confidence.
Most importantly I have learned that there is a big difference between contentment and complacency - you can only run from yourself for so long before there is nowhere else to go. We grow when we hit rock bottom and it’s the most rewarding thing to build your own life from the ground up.
It doesn’t always have to be so hard. You can choose love. To be loved. To love back. Everything and everyone comes in different shapes and sizes and you cannot judge anything for the way it comes into your life. It’s there for a reason. Trust it. Lean into it. Watch the magic unfold.
So whatever is going on during a time of confusion, lean into yourself and trust that it will be ok.
The path is laid out.
You are enough and if you don’t think so - do something wonderful to prove to yourself you are.