Risky Business.

Do you ever get so far down a road that you can turn to both your left and your right and see that you have narrowed your gaze in the blindness of moving forward. Like walking into a tunnel that comes to a point, the structure that surrounds you narrows as you move forward, and yet you charge on. As you feel the pushback of the wind you create against your arms, you continue on. When you begin to feel the chill of the concrete that skims you shoulders you charge on, slower now, but still forward. Smaller and smaller become the walls around you, the ceiling slanting downward to meet your height as you inch forward. Your pace slows until there is no movement left to be had, you can neither turn back nor move forward. Awarded your stature by your unrelenting movement forward.

Quickly ignored were all of the open doorways at your side, quickly missed were all the trapdoors and ladders, until the gift of their presence had expired. Each of them a risk too heavy to weigh against a future you participated in the manifestation of. So onward you went until at your destiny you arrived. For others this is the perfect place to land. Protected, in a place to catch you breath, having not missed an opportunity to arrive first.

For you though, you see the distance in front of you, almost as if through a telescope now. Held by your position. The responsibilities you have acquired in your sprint to the finish have become heavy now. Expensive momentary necessities that motivated your charge into the darkness. Counting backward now at the risks you passed up. The tunnels unexplored, the doors gone unopened. Here you have arrived, in great time, but with every curiosity you began with. The heaviest of the kit you hadn’t thought was with you.

Knowing everyone will arrive sooner or later, to stand parallel, just as you are. To shout back to them to slow down is your only charge. In your voice they don’t hear your status, your wealth or your purpose. All they hear is your plea to lessen their pace. The echo encouraging them to wander left and right, explore the passages you so readily passed. “We will all arrive” becomes your advice, “bring a story other than mine”.

Let’s take some risks. Have some adventures. Make some memories. Learn from our mistakes. Let’s fail once in awhile. At least we’ll have something to talk about. 

xoxo.

 

Lately.

“If all that was left of you was your smile, and your little finger. You’d still be more of a man than anyone I’ve ever met.”- Vesper Lynd to James Bond in Casino Royale. 

Some gentlemanly things I have been loving lately.

tumblr_n0eelxwPQm1qigj2oo1_r1_500 tumblr_n2rjvqGQ1D1ssfdiao1_500 tumblr_mzoc5qjPN21rygfqqo1_r1_500 tumblr_n4gt25hLGS1rel1ijo1_500 tumblr_n8pvhjsufG1rtu7hvo1_500 23a12969b4eba8b692a791a311404584 tumblr_mxlmxqxlu81r3pv4qo1_500  70121b576af74dd30da1094f009c0e7b Jason Bateman in GQ tumblr_msiky3X2HC1qim1feo1_r2_500 tumblr_m1ueiklnbs1qa20meo1_1280 tumblr_n3z2evXzh21qld47lo1_500 tumblr_mkjcx4SQTw1qzleu4o1_500 tumblr_n9nbayr0aY1trfqkjo1_500 5d14827fe72b9d55c8f522383cde0d3b 15b726a9d988f74f4146b4dd1da09e7d

Hats.

If life is like a box of chocolates, then people are like pies.
13e3706c9a606579aa4036361ecfca71These are a few of my slices, slivers and wedges you eat from the pan with a fork.

The Shy Kid-Sometimes I just clam up… it’s usually one hundred percent involuntary. Sorry about that. 

The Conquering Hero-When I am not paralyzed by social anxiety, I can be your Brave Heart. I’ll charge into battle for you and get the job done. I like this side of me, it is where I feel most like myself. It’s a good balance to the shyness I tend to experience. 

Your Sponsor- If there was rehab for Adult-ing. I’d be your sponsor for that. Hi I’m Amanda, it has been 9 months since my quarter life crisis. Feel free to call me if you happen to forget that not knowing everything all the time is completely normal. 

**Ashley-I like dancing to hip hop. 

Lady Grish- I do my nails, buy expensive undies, and sometimes spend 45 minutes getting ready. I light candles, and watch Sex & the City… ya know why? Because I like to. 

Mischief Conductor-I like to prank the absolute pants off of people. I thoroughly enjoy doing silly things. I like laughing a lot -laughing is like 63% of my ab routine. I’ll start an indoor water balloon fight, and throw a whole tilapia through your window… good lookin’ out. 

The Hopo-Romo- Admittedly I am a hopeless hopeless romantic. But I don’t want to talk about it. Handwritten notes and white roses are my kryptonite. 

The Nerd Alert- I like being nose deep in a good book or article at all times. I love learning new things, especially about the way that people interact with one another, the way the brain works, and generally everything having to do with science and sports. (SHHHH WE BE NERDING. HARD.)

The Bro- I’ll sit on the couch and watch sports with you. I’ll even shut up during Sportscenter (except to annoyingly go “dun-nah-nah-duh-nah-nah”). I enjoy a scotch and a cigar. I’ll wingman you at the bar. I’ll even pretend to be your wife if someone dances up on you at the club and you don’t want them to (just protect me afterward because she’s bigger than I am).

The Bond Girl- Admittedly I have wanted to be a Bond Girl for the bulk of my post elementary school life. Unfortunately, Oregon State didn’t offer it as a major, so I had to take it on as an extra curricular. I’ll save the world with you… just let me put my heels on. 

Yup that’s me.

**I didn’t come up with this one.

 

Let’s get it.

bbf48f6d13b021ef159ce0e240e083f9

I’ve been away with my family for a total of 48 hours at the moment. The first 36 of which resulted in a lot of yelling, eye rolling, and general all around family-ness. The other 12 we all slept like rocks, and have seemingly worked out the kinks of merging our somewhat separate lives back together as the unit we are.

Being away from my normal day to day has made me think about a lot of things, about time and it’s limitations. The mystery of what lies beyond the present, and what control we have over the experiences we have as individuals. Moreover how what we experience on our own shapes the way that we relate to others. I have been incredibly privileged to have friends who are independent and headstrong. Many of them who did not end up in the same geography as me once we all started planting our own roots. Our friendships are survived by our adventures, experiences and mishaps. Our independence brings us together because we are different, we are alone as we are amongst company, and that I have always loved about them.

As we’ve learned about me, I like being a lone wolf, but I am neck deep in love at all times. A tragic combination I sometimes think, to have such a capacity for how much I care for others, but at the same time, require space in order to feel it. I fall in love in big moments, and small moments, one chip at a time. The true purpose of loved ones I suppose is that in the moments that we are not next to one another, we are at all times the entirety of ourselves. Knowing that even in the absence of one another our friendship is still present in the makeup of what becomes our comfort, our motivation and our hope.

The new revelation is that without asking for tomorrow, we are to be all of who we are every moment, of everyday. Without having each other every second, in the moments that we have one another we will find fuel for our love in all that we have done in one another’s absence.

Go do you.

 

Rule #76

Some people go to church, some people meditate, some people travel the world to find the meanings of life… I on the other hand watch Wedding Crashers.

d1e9b1bc907e5f2c447e47f031d2684c

Like most comedic performances, the ones that center on the truth tend to be the funniest. Perhaps because they are undeniable, or perhaps because they are so relatable. Whatever the reason however, these ones have stuck with me for quite awhile… probably because TBS shows this movie every 3 days.

“You lock it up”:  This is personally my favorite was to say get your (bleep) together. Delly and I say this via phone/text/message/smoke signal or fax at least once a week. It’s that verbal cold water to the face you need when you are spinning. I can recall probably 100 instances of standing in the kitchen of our old house standing face to face shouting “You lock it up”. It’s the way you say “I love you, you’re being a crazy person right now, do you need a gluten free snack?” quickly.

“Rule #76- no excuses, play like a champion”: We all know I am a sucker for a good sports analogy. Moral of the story here folks is: don’t quit.

“Come on in for the real thing”: Someone once told me “Amanda when you hug, it’s like we’re family, you don’t f* around, it’s not one of those fluff hugs”. Yeah that’s probably true… You want one? True story- I accidentally knocked the wind out of someone once. On another occasion I popped my friends back… so if you are in need of a good hug, or missed your appointment at the chiropractor give me a call. You can bring it in for the real thing.

“I’m not perfect, but who are we kidding, neither are you.”: If there has been anything I’ve learned over the past few years, it has been that at any point in time, you deserve a little wiggle room. On the flip side you also deserve to give it to others. I remember telling a girlfriend “let them be nice to you, and see what happens”. Lovely people make mistakes, whether or not you care to know, so do you. We are all imperfect, so own it. We can achieve, succeed, and evolve while still being flawed. That’s the beauty of it.

“Love is your soul’s recognition of it’s counterpart in another”: This is the kicker. I tend to take this one, not only romantically, but also as it relates to friendship, family and beyond. Love is that moment when you laugh at the same joke without speaking, Love is that moment you both reach down to pick up the mess you’re in. Love is burying the proverbial body. I spent some time with a friend last week, who made me think of this quote, spurring this whole post actually. Love is that moment when you are completely yourself in the presence of someone being the entirety of themselves. It isn’t always pretty, and it takes on different landscapes. Love is that moment when you find the protection of your faults in someone else, because they either have the same, or their compassion outweighs your need to hide.

Love is both a verb and a noun. An action, and a place to get lost. I was reminded of that. You can be yourself here, and it sounds like this. 

Ok. Go.

ed8d3d5fd8953555b62805a784173a35

When I was 17 I collided with a goalie, connecting collar bone to foot, and hit the ground knowing, something in the top of my right foot wasn’t right. I took my cleat off and got to the sideline. Feeling the frustration you feel, when you let your team down, and even worse yourself. When the game ended, I headed to the hospital with my family. Unable to find any broken bones, I was wrapped up, iced and given crutches for the next few weeks.

I remember that pain that echo’d up my whole body when I received a pass my first practice back. I ran with this awkward stride, couldn’t find my sprint, and was ultimately so frustrated I almost cried. There is no feat like a physical defeat, when your memory knows what to do, but your body doesn’t have the power to execute.

A couple hours later practice ended, and as the rest of my team left to go home, I walked to the practice field to get reacquainted with my feet. After a couple hours of sprints and laterals, an assistant coach came up to me and said “What are you doing? Are you done running yet?” It wasn’t until someone else broke my focus that I woke up. It had been an hour or so, and when reality set in I almost collapsed. “I’m trying to get back” I said. He chucked, packed and moved on.

I look back on that moment in my life, not to take pride in anything other than knowing what capacity I have for wanting something so badly. You don’t know hungry until you can’t feed yourself right?

I entered into a new chapter in my life this week, and I can honestly say, I haven’t been this inspired, this hungry and this determined in a long time. I feel like myself these days, and that is a good thing. I’m motivated, not only by the weight of the opportunity that is in front of me, but also by the idea that I could fail. I’ve never wanted anything more that to be successful at the stage in my life I am currently in, and the gravity of my reality has hit me like a bus. I’ll tell you right now I want it. The best advice I received this week from a new acquaintance was: “Don’t F*ing Wait”… Here’s to not waiting.

Some sight’s and sounds to light a fire.

Collect: Life is a team sport. Never forget that part. 

Execute: How bad do you want it?