The Stupid White Cars of Your Life

r-m-drake

For an entire semester, I would drive by this house with a clean white car in the drive. Every day, I focused on this car. Not because it was new. Not because it was always peculiarly clean. Not for any particular reason.

This car caught my attention because it was more than a car. It was the exact same vehicle my ex boyfriend drove. Though I knew it wasn’t him, this car continually caught my eye, bringing my mind back to him. This car owned my thoughts as I drove through this small, forgettable town day in and day out.

On my last drive home from class, the car was yet again parked in the drive. As I routinely turned my attention to this place, I took my eyes off the memory trigger and to the home beside it. For a moment, I was lost in my own mind. This home was beautiful. This home was a two story brick mansion with quiet ivy crawling it’s way to the sky. It was calming and something about it felt good with my soul.

And then I got angry.

I was angry for letting this stupid car keep me from enjoying such a peaceful place. For so long, I failed to enjoy this beautiful home and concentrated all my negative energy on my stupid ex boyfriend and his stupid clean, white car.

So often, we see good and bad juxtaposed in life. We see starving children on the hillside of a beautiful, majestic mountain. We see a college diploma sitting next to the unemployment check on the kitchen table. We see our stupid ex boyfriend’s car sitting in the drive of a beautiful, old home.

So let’s stop focusing on the negative and all the ways that life can go wrong. Let’s cheer each other on, and smile at strangers, and go to bed with smiles instead of slow streaming tears. Let’s choose to focus on the good things in life that we often take for granted. Let’s understand that permanence in life is imaginary and change is inevitable.

Let’s focus on all the things we want to do in life and do them. Let’s do all the things and live a really, really full life.

I challenge you to stop looking at the metaphorical clean, white, distracting cars in your life and dedicate your time and energy to those beautiful places where your soul can rest. Let’s go out and search for these resting places of our souls. And when we find them, let’s pick back up, kiss them goodbye, and find the next one.

Let’s continue to move and grow and learn new things.

For the sake of all things good, keep learning new things.

xox | crh

 

Indecision: The Death of Us All.

Decide. Whatever it is you want to do, just decide already.

And when you don’t know what to do, decide. Just do it. It doesn’t matter if it’s right or meant to be or your next best step. It doesn’t matter if it’s big or small or somewhere in between. It doesn’t matter if it will change your life or change your day, just do it. Just decide already.

Because what’s the worst thing you can possible do to yourself?

Remain stagnant. Seriously. Don’t take action about anything. Stay where you are and live a very comfortable life. Don’t take risks. God forbid you try something new…don’t do that either. Stay in your nice stable environment and live the same year 80 times and call it a life.

That’s what you can do.

But what if I told you that you are one decision away from being completely different? What if I said that you are one choice away from doing whatever the hell you’ve always wanted to do?

Sometimes we forget that we’re adults and we can make our own decisions beyond just paying the bills. We forget that if we hate the life we’re living, we can pick up and move to do whatever. we. want.

So you want to live abroad? Okay. Go live abroad.

You want to end your long-term, unhappy relationship? Okay. Go ahead and end it.

You want to go back to school to do something you actually love? Okay. Start applying.

Why are we not doing these things? Why am I typing these words? Shouldn’t we know that we can move wherever we want? We are not trees! If you want to do something in your life, there is no better time than this exact moment. If you wait one more, you’re wasting precious time. We sometimes think we are invincible and we’ll live forever and (eventually) do all the things we want to do. But what happens when you get to the end of your life and you didn’t take that chance? You never went to that foreign country you wanted to see your whole life. You never expressed your feelings to that person your soul was yearning for when you were young. You never changed your major to do the work you actually wanted to do.

It’s one life. Sometimes we hear that so much that we become numb to this statement.

You only get ONE LIFE. Stop reading and start understanding. Start digging deeper. Start figuring out what it is that you want. What it is that your soul desires. When you’re 80 (God willing) and you’re looking back on your life, what is it that you wish you would do right now. Start living in the present and understanding that time is passing you by and inaction will be the death of your soul.

Please don’t kill your soul.

 

crh

Do not be lazy like this cat. Or do. I don’t care.

Play a song you’ve never heard.

Paint your nails with neon colors.

Stare deeply into a stranger’s eyes

& smile.

Because life is long and it’s short and sometimes hurts really bad but other times is really really really great but sometimes the greatness is a day and the darkness is a month and you forget to look at the clock for 72 hours and you question what life is.

& so play that song. Open your mind. Try something new.

The world is so vast and so full and so beautifully tragic.

And if I asked you to describe your life is 3 words, would one of them be FULL?

Are you living a full, really luscious life or nah? Are you becoming more whole? Are you becoming better? Are you expanding yourself as a person?

If the answer is no, if you would not use the word “full” to describe the life you are creating for yourself, I suggest you change.

And I don’t mean next week or tomorrow or this evening. I mean now. Change as quickly as humanly possible because time…well time is quickly fading and I don’t know what else to tell you than to change.

Go live. Go do. Go be. Live everything you can and do everything you can and be every single thing you can be.

What are you waiting for?

Dear Eight Year Old Me…

What I would do to sit down and chat with the 8 year old me. Chelsey: the second grade child who loved to read and play pretend and kiss her parents goodnight. Would she be proud of the woman sitting before her? Would she recognize me? Would she love me.

I imagined myself in Mrs. Jansen’s second grade classroom with my friends, Courtney and Emma, and think back to the carefree recesses and simplistic lifestyles we led. I desperately wanted to grow up, only to turn around and wish I could be 8 again in that basement classroom with only the people who cared about what we were eating for lunch and not the clothes we wore on our backs.

Oh, the life.

So, if I had the chance, what would I tell her? What would I tell that sweet, child that I was over a decade ago?

1. Do it for the story. Say yes to as many things as possible. Whether it turns out well or terrible, it becomes a part of your story, your journey, and will ultimately shape you into who you will become.

2. Stop worrying about your weight. If you want to get fit and strong, DO IT. But don’t walk around all self-conscious about your appearance. You’re a beautiful, young girl. Wear it proud!

3. Hang out with people who make you laugh. Don’t underestimate laughter and humor in everyday people. Life is too short not to laugh too much.

4. Learn as much as you can. Absorb as much information from your education as possible. You can never know too much.

5. With that being said, never play the dumb girl. EVER.

6. Find some hobbies you love. Maybe one to spend time with mom or dad and maybe one to make you a more well-rounded individual. Find some hobbies and practice till you bleed (sometimes literally.)

7. Never stop writing. Whether you’re keeping a journal under your bed or you blog to a million followers, never stop writing and producing and creating.

8. Don’t sweat the small stuff. That one race you didn’t win in track? Doesn’t matter. That one sleepover you didn’t get invited to? Forget it. You’re bigger than your circumstances.

9. Fall in love with yourself before you let someone else do it. Seriously, when you know and love yourself first, you won’t hurt as badly when it comes crashing down around you. You’ll walk away just as full of an individual as the strong girl who walked into that relationship. Remember: you are so much more than someone’s significant other.

10. You do you, girl. Seriously, do you so hard. Life is too short not to. You want to pursue something? Pursue it with everything you have. And when you think you’ve given all that you’ve got, give it 110% more. You are capable of so many wonderful and incredible things. You are not just a daughter or a sister or a roommate or a student. You are a woman, an individual who has a world of opportunity lying ahead of her. Choose to take the path less traveled. Does it make you uncomfortable? Yes. Good. You’re doing something different. Stand up for what you believe in, and don’t back down. You are capable. You are worthy. You are enough.

Why We Leave Behind Mr. Right and Chase After Mr. Wrong

We’ve all done it. We sit down with our friends and a box of wine and discuss our ideal man. From his looks to his personality, all the way down to his own mother, we have an idea of what we’re looking for in that special someone. We call him Mr. Right.

He’s the man we want our children to call Dad and the guy we want to crawl in bed with after a long day to make us feel okay about our lives. We want him to care for us and love us unconditionally. He’s everything we’ve always been looking for. So why do we run?

I have been given various opportunities to be with some of my own Mr. Rights. These men were incredibly nice, down to earth, funny and easy-going. These were overall good men. So why didn’t I choose them? Why am I single when they’ve literally sat in the palm of my hand?

I chose the assholes instead. I chose the chase. The guy that knew how to charm a girl with his wit and good looks. The guy who could be seeing multiple girls at one time and not feel any kind of remorse whatsoever. Those were the kind of guys I was drawn to. I literally put my hand up to the Mr. Rights of the world, only to chase men who had no interest in me or my feelings.

They’re exciting. They’re mysterious because they aren’t like us. We want to know more and we’re drawn to the charm they use on all women. We want to feel young and reckless and ruthless, and Mr. Right isn’t going to make us feel that way.

We think, “Oh I have my whole life to settle down with someone who understands me and knows my feelings.” The man I will settle down and grow old with cannot possibly be found at this place at this point in my life. But what happens when we turn around and we’re halfway through life and we missed our shot, our one true chance at love? What if we wasted it on wasted nights that turned into regretful mornings with men who can’t even pronounce our first name? When we’ve taken too long in our chase for the Mr. Excitings of the world, that we’re too late?

We are just. too. late.

So, it’s time to start reevaluating that list of who we desire. It’s time to start rethinking who we chase. It’s time to stop letting the ladies man win. We must start giving the Mr. Rights a chance in this world, not only for them but for ourselves as well. Give Mr. Right a chance and you may find yourself feeling much better about your life and yourself.