smoke and bone.

i don’t know what i’m doing here anymore.

i’m sorry. this is just one of those posts bloggers churn out about their Purpose and i know it’s boring for you, because it’s always boring for me when others do it, and i truly apologize for putting you through boredom. that said, i kind of feel like i have to put this on the table.

i used to write in a vacuum. i used to write emotional diatribes, drawn from my depths, about the most personal things that i went through, and i dropped them into the void of the internet. they still exist here, because i haven’t made time to clear them out. i’m ashamed of them now, in a way – although i put enough veils over my words for them not to reveal actual events and people, unless you know me well, it is just – it’s so much of me. it is my squishiest, wriggliest parts and it exists for the public. that said, despite my shame, i recognize that a small percentage of them are also excellent writing, and i want that to remain. i’m proud of it too, in a way. it’s a confusing thing.

i’m not in a vacuum anymore. i have people i met here that i am now friends with, in the “hey, let’s grab a cup of coffee” way. i have friends i made in the physical world that read these words and i WORRY, i worry so hard of what everyone thinks of me. i worry what strangers who come up on this space think of me, when they are used to seeing twenty something blogs that are full of sparkliness and polka dots. i’m building a career and i know i am not the sanest person out there and i wonder, because my thoughts and feelings are raw and do not fit into a sparkly mold, i wonder how clients and employers might see me. i wonder what i am losing, with this space. i wonder if i am brave enough, to deal with the notion of being seen. the blogging world is not what it used to be – it’s not kids on livejournal and xanga spitting out their feelings anymore, it’s chefs and bakers and fashionistas and mommies and marketers and niches, but very rarely is it just people. at the end of the day, i’m just a person.

there are a few obvious answers. to close up shop completely, which i’ve tossed around, but it doesn’t quite feel right. the other option is to close up shop in a different way, and hide the raw parts. which is problematic because, in my opinion, i would also be hiding the real parts, and i place value on the concept of being genuine, of being transparent, of telling the truth without the varnish. and i guess the best of us strike a careful balance where you only expose them at the right moments, where most of the time you are shiny and positive and at just the right moments you let your guard down and tell the truth to create a sense of relation with your audience. but let’s be real, i am pure shit at that. i don’t know the right moments for anything and i have a terrible sense of balance. so i could write about the things i do and the trips i take and the recipes i bake. i could do that and i wouldn’t feel as though i were actually showing you anything. it wouldn’t really feel like me. and i guess the third option is to man up and do what i want and say fuck repercussions. i’ve been cautioned against this by people older and wiser than i, and i am scared. i am just well and truly scared.

so this is a large part of the reason why i have been so quiet. i don’t know what i’m doing here, and i don’t know where i belong. writing online was once my refuge, and i can’t begin to explain to you the ways it saved me. i’ve tried to journal, and it’s never given me the same sense of relief that writing for an audience, even an invisible one, has. i like sharing my world, but i don’t know how much of it to share. the friendships i’ve made across these wires are the kind that i would bleed for, the kind i cry for because i cannot fathom how deeply i’ve been blessed. the whole idea of writing a blog, of a sense of community, it matters to me deeply. but i don’t know what i have to bring to the table anymore.

al fresco.

the actress and i were sitting in front of a wide open bar window on a friday night. i was sipping a house made sangria, she had a glass of whiskey.

i look inside of houses all the time. i am fascinated, that every window contains another life with the same kind of heartbeat, breath, troubles and joys that i have too. there’s a word for it, i’ve learned recently: sonder. it’s overwhelming, in the city, to see giant crowds of people and know all of the same have the same little self obsessed universe that i do. it’s all so large, when you really think about it. it makes me anxious sometimes, walking down broadway every night, glancing up at the empire state building, pushing through crowds.

in any case, i like looking in the windows of strangers. it’s voyeurism, but of the curious kind, not the creepy kind. Also, i like to see furniture. on the third floor of a nondescript building someone leaned out and surveyed the street below – i could only see him in shadow, he was lit from behind. and i invented, as we all do, a little story for him in my head, of how he was taking a break from getting ready for a night out. how he was looking up and down the street before putting on his button down and joining the rest of the bros in the lower east side to do shots until way too late and try to bring home a girl in a bandage dress and nude pumps.

i understand what people chase in new york. or at least, part of it. i tried, too. i was never thin enough or pretty enough or had the right clothes or enough craziness to let go the way you need to to give over to night, here, but i tried. when i realized it wouldn’t be mine, i just wasn’t the right kind, i walked away and found other things. i had an intense amount of fun, but i never really fit. and i’m still trying to figure out, always, where i belong.

the man leaning out of the window reminded me that you don’t get time back. i’ll never have the time back where i am new to the real world and stomping glittering streets until four am. i’ll never have college with stone buildings and sense of crisp academia and finals and the ability to make learning a foundation of my world. i’ll never have youth, though i really never felt i did.

you can’t go back, not ever.


a listicle.

so here’s a funny thing. i heard the word listicle thrown about online, and i understood what it referred to but also i was legitimately very confused. because it reminded me of icicle and i couldn’t for my life draw the connection between online articles and lists and icicles. and then i realized, days later, it’s a combination of list and article.

here’s one that’s more list than article.

  • when you wait out the very crowded train, and a very uncrowded train follows
  • when unexpectedly, there is a mid summer cool spell and you can leave the windows open to a glorious breeze as the sun sets
  • when the fog clears
  • when the nice girl at the salad place continuously discounts your lunchtime salad to the tune of $5
  • when friends introduce you to new music
  • when you finish up another awesome course with Molly over at Stratejoy.
  • when your mom renews your Julep subscription.
  • when you have a Very Hard Night and there is someone to stroke your face and breathe deeply with you to lull you to sleep
  • when your birthday is around the corner and for the first time in years, you are excited to have an actual party.

it was a hard August. September brings my 28th birthday and leaves and the cool and a sense of fresh beginnings. i, for one, am excited.

when the vacuum fills.

we get greedy. there are good things in front of us and still, all we can see is more, what else, how much more could i have. it doesn’t matter, not quite, if you’re satisfied where you are because we deserve more than satisfaction, we deserve fireworks, we deserve every moment to be a sparkleburst of unadulterated joy. we’re told we’re complacent.

me, i don’t have answers. but you step back and you look at what’s around you and you put the brakes on, and you say, absorb this.

we all exist on the same push pull continuum, in and out, every breath, every day, every commute, every sleep. we exist in cycles, rhythms, circadian and otherwise. we exist in joy and despair, dark and light, everywhere in between. and lest you think the spectrum just goes left to right, no, it does not, it is three dimensions or even four if you’re calculating it right.

they say light is the absence of dark but it’s more than that, i know now. i know about middle ground and i know about real nothingness, what the vacuum feels like. and i know when it fills. it makes you more grateful, it really does.

i’m glad for summer, for sun, even for oppressive levels of humidity. i am glad for love, and work. i am glad for paint colors and couches, for insight, for people i call my own that make me smile.

i’m glad for so much.

they don’t deserve my worry, now.

i’m moving at a speed that, to dominique of four years ago, would be slow, but it’s faster than i’ve gone in a long while. i’m traveling – in the past year I’ve been to Atlantic City, Vegas, minnesota, Florida and the Bahamas, a different part of Florida, and LA. i’m working on growing my small business, i’m tending to the demands of my day job, and i’m still trying to eat relatively healthfully and keep my house in a semblance or order and prevent the dust bunnies from taking over. my plate, it is full.

it was about this time last year, post bisc, that i sank into blue exhaustion. i’ve adjusted in ways and it’s lifted in ways. i know what i need and i am more liberal with down time, especially down time that i don’t let myself feel guilty for. i am also more rigid with my scheduling, which paradoxically helps me tremendously. or perhaps not, because i know of several anxious/ADD people that are only assisted by rigid schedules.

something rose in me in winter, after i spent a week on a boat in the heat. some curtain parted and i learned to finally believe in my own future. i learned that i’m capable of creating one, and i confronted the possibility that none of it will work. And when i did, i realized that the world won’t stop spinning and i’ll figure something else out. i always do.

a few weekends ago i dropped my saturday night plans and drove to AC with the bouncer and some friends, and i panicked and dreaded what might happen if i did not clean, work, and take care of things. and nothing did, except i had a lot of fun and made an awesome memory. the idea that the world will crumble if the constructs i’ve built to keep me safe aren’t in place isn’t true, even if it does make me uncomfortable. and maybe it also means that some of my constructs aren’t necessary.

i wrote this on a on a train which took me to a short road trip which took me to a party, and every step of the way i had friends by my side. i appreciate, for once, how lucky that makes me. it certainly wasn’t the case several years ago – since then i’ve developed hardness, edges, spiky bits that weren’t there before. paula asked me on our AC drive, “how do you do that?”, with regard to the ways i can be cold, and i answered honestly, after consideration, “i would never wish it on you, because it comes from periods of intense loneliness, of really having no one, and learning you’re all you need to survive”.

but those times are over. they may come again (change is the only constant), but they don’t deserve my worry now. now, i’ll just be grateful.

because vegas.

in vegas, the plane lands and it hits me that this is really happening, and it’s like all the anxiety i should have had for the preceding weeks hits me right in the heart, and i am shaking and my blood is pounding. i spend the afternoon on a patio meeting new people and amping myself up. when night falls, i have three glasses of red and some of tom’s bacon satay, and decide i should probably be done, but when berto offers me a drink, i’m not going to turn him down. THAT WOULD BE RUDE.

vegas - wed night

in vegas, i walk up and down the strip, hitting new york new york for a chat with megan while other friends ride the rollercoaster. and then me, tom, nick, tiff, casey, ed, and megan pop into holstein’s in the cosmopolitan for the most kick ass of burgers and adult milkshakes. GOD THOSE BURGERS, GUYS, AMIRITE? in vegas  i do braless brunch at bouchon for the second year in a row with anna, lauren, and jen.


in vegas i have day dresses and night dresses but i never wear pants. i hop into my assigned thursday dress and over to serendipity for our welcome mixer, where, god, everyone is just so pretty and REAL and right in front of me. i take smoke breaks with raoul, edwin, and nico. i snuggle up with my onyi as many times as i can. i sit and chat with sara and am astonished by her piercing insight. i migrate to margaritaville, where i intend to dance, but instead end up having a long heart to heart with bob. i drag ed to the cosmo with me to meet up with maxie in the fancy as fuck chandelier bar, where she buys me a drink that probably costs $20. girl, i owe you.

vegas - me and o

in vegas i don’t sleep, i wake up not far past the crack of dawn and have chai and breakfast with nick and ed. i toss on my bikini, slather myself with GLIMMER SUNSCREEN YES. in vegas, we stay at the swanky flamingo go rooms. we party by the go pool, where the dj is on point with THE BEST music. i danced and twirled through the waterfall (for the second year) with lauren and bob. and pretty much all i had to do to initiate that was look at lauren. i rapped out some missy, standing on a daybed with michelle. i paint my nails purple. i hoist tiff onto my shoulders and ed and tom still owe me $100 combined for this (no you don’t, guys, don’t worry).

vegas - pool

in vegas my friends and i lay around on my bed talking about everything and nothing and everything some more. in vegas i put on my sequined dress with the tulle underneath and i do heavy eyes and red lips. i’m deep inside my head as we watch the cirque performers dive in and out and dance around. i can’t stop thinking about the conditioning they have to go through, the mechanics of the stage. in vegas, sometimes, i’m lonely. but i realize that a lot of people are actually on team go to sleep, and i laugh in the elevator, and the girl i call my sister tells me i can come cuddle her if i want, and i fall asleep ok.

in vegas i realize that you don’t actually become superhuman when you land at mccarren and i decide i should take a low key day. i wander the back halls of the wynn and the encore for close to an hour and we sit on all the fancy chairs and threaten to steal the statues. i decide that maybe one day i’ll get married under flower poms and fairy lights. we meet up with amber in front of the fountains at the venetian and when we realize she won’t be around for a cheese plate at otto the next day, we decide to do a cheese plate right then. we’ll call it cheese plate, the prequel. she is kind and funny and warm and answers so many questions for me.


in vegas we eat at buffets – le village in paris, this time. i sit at a big round table with larissa (my kickass roommate), marian, jessica, tiff, kendra, kate and other fantastic people. we talk about things that will stay off the internet, but i have another moment of wondering why we really hide anything, because when we crack open just a little and let the light shine out, the people we should be with, they flock right to us.

in vegas i slip into a white dress, i tuck a towel into the front of it to prevent stray makeup from getting in. i’m really happy my roommate was the only one to witness that towel solution. i finish glittering my nails down at the bar with a screwdriver next to me. i play a raucous game of “i never”. i take it to another level.

vegas - white party


in vegas, between pure and the act, i dance all. fucking. night. long. maxie and i are the last ones left standing, and at four something we hobble (seriously) to get some food. i lose tic tac toe (who EVER loses tic tac toe) to kelly. i walk into my room and am thrilled to find people – “party room YES.” – but i fall asleep about ten minutes in anyway.


in vegas i’m up way too early. i watch everyone having all of their feelings at brunch and i can’t summon mine, and i think how i’ve existed behind a veil for a year, i think how everything lives so deep, how i wish i could pull it out towards the surface, but i’ve forgotten how. i think, also, how i’m not all that sad because we all live on the internet, and although i love this time, i love this fun, online is where our day to day plays out and i don’t really have to miss anyone. because i know what it is to make a bond across the cables.

in vegas i crash hard. i wander over for cheese plate volume 2, and i talk to the bouncer and realize just how much i miss him, how my sleep isn’t right when he’s not next to me (vomit, i know, i’m sorry). we have a smaller group and i’m grateful for fewer people, i’m grateful to be able to tone myself down but still be seen. i’m grateful that raoul, tiff, and nick stay to take a gondola ride with me, even though i’m pretty sure none of them want to.

in vegas i do all my favorite things twice, which means i get yet another breakfast at bouchon, and another amazing holstein’s burger. i spend most of my day being bob’s good luck charm on some slot machines. and then i realize just how sick i am, larissa loads me up with benadryl, and i hop onto my plane with ed, and pass out pretty much mid-sentence.

after vegas, i realize just how lucky i am, in so, so, many ways.



for my next trick.

i consider my life to be fairly small, and i don’t consider this a bad thing. it’s mine – and i mean, not to get too woo-woo on you but we are all really only tiny little specks in the vastness of the planet, let alone the universe, and i try to stay conscious that my own existence is nearly nothing, even if it feels all consuming to me. but sometimes i have big revelations that overturn my brain and really make me gasp for a second, and obviously my first instinct is to write about them on the internet, because i’ve been doing that for twelve years.

you may or may not know that i just finished my first month of doing some freelance work on top of my day job. you can learn more about that over at my professional site, complete with it’s own blog. and if you’re so inclined, you can check out and like/follow the associated facebook page and twitter account and you’ll make my little heart happy. in any case, i’ve finished this up and while i am both doing this work and putting energy into growing my business i have had a truckload of thoughts.

  • putting yourself out there is really fucking hard: no, it’s not professional to drop the f-bomb on the internet but i don’t particularly care because this situation warrants it. i have been terrified every step of the way that the lot of you are out there laughing to yourself that i’m even trying to do this. of course i’ve received nothing but great and helpful feedback and support from my people, but still. still. every little drop of kindness, from facebook comments to an email from my boss at my old job praising my efforts to my boyfriend’s unexpected compliments on a client letter, every bit is appreciated and i squeeze it until it’s wrung dry. shit is terrifying, yo.
  • having a part time job and a full time job is stressy: and i expect to do it for over a year to come, so let’s hope my fragile little neurons survive, huh?
  • little building blocks every day lead to big things: NONE OF THIS HAPPENS OVERNIGHT. none of it happens in a day, or a week, or a month, or even a year. i am the most impatient, foot stamping, give-it-to-me now kind of person and i am learning so much about how i cannot be that way. there are so many tiny tasks to be done to build up to the bigger picture. i’ve tried really hard to adapt the advice of doing at least one small thing every day to work on this, even if it’s as tiny as sending an email or signing up for a networking group. because when these tiny actions pile up they become accomplished goals. and if something is scary, i breathe deeply and try to headbutt it like the badass ram that i am. spoiler: it is all scary.
  • organization and brain dumps are very important: guys, there is a lot of stuff happening. during the month of march i did my first month of work for a client on retainer, i had my regular full time gig to attend to, i had scintilla to run, and i had you know, life and feeding myself and bathing. i keep a wide variety of to do lists and task managers on hand and i’m still finding the perfect balance for me, though i am loving trello for project management and for personal to-do items. relatedly, i love freshbooks for time tracking and billing.
  • find support and hold onto it for dear life: i am so fortunate because i have a coworker, friend, and mentor who is also embarking on this journey, and we have been able to serve as resources for each other. i have had SO MANY questions and because he’s a little bit further along in the process, he’s been infinitely helpful and reassuring. because things like quarterly taxes are made to destroy your sanity, and contracts can be super confusing, and marketing oneself sometimes looks like a big wide field of landmines, and these are all thing i have to worry about now.
  • it is really important to have an eye on the prize, and have the other one on the path in front of you: you lose motivation quick if you don’t realize the big reasons why you’re doing this. i eventually want to own my own time and have more flexibility with it, and i want the challenge and excitement of working on new projects on a consistent basis. i have done extensive research into the downsides (lack of health insurance, no paid vacations, pressure to work always, never seeing the outside world, I KNOW), and i’ve decided to try it anyway. in the same vein, it’s important to have the Big Goal broken down into steps that have associated timelines. i have measurable goals that i’ve calendarized to make sure i’m making progress towards the end goal (or, i mean, sort of. i have them in my head. next to do item: put them on an actual thing, digital or analog).

so this is my latest adventure and i am positive i will continue to have Many Thoughts and Feelings about it, and as always, i adore you all for listening. do you have any tips or tricks for me? or any business you want to refer my way *wink, nudge*?

priorities. and what i want.

it’s just beginning to dawn on me that this is my life.

i’ve had a torrent of thoughts and revelations since my week in the sun with the bouncer, tiff, and nick. what exactly do i want? why is that a much more difficult question than it pretends to be? i gave in and watched the beyonce documentary today and she said the most difficult question she faced when transitioning into managing herself was just this. and the options, they stretch so far, so wide and god, it is hard to pin them down.

i learned in my 30 days of full on paleo eating that anything can be done when you prioritize it, but you can’t prioritize everything, you have to choose. it’s the choice that’s central. that month i knew what my priority was and other things were structured around that. and when i was flailing, this was a non negotiable because i’d made it a priority. we live in an age where there are new ideas and thoughts thrust at you all the time – literally, all of the time – it is so damn noisy, you know? we are taught to want everything and we are never taught what it takes to get even one thing. 

so i am prioritizing. i am imagining, for once, openly, what i really really want my life to look like and what works for me. i’m trashing ill conceived notions that it is because of my own failings and weaknesses that i am not him or her or that. i’m not focusing on all of the things i am not. and there are a host of things that i am not, but there is also a lengthy list of things that i definitively am. so for now, i’m resting in the notion of figuring out the life i want and then, i will make a plan to get there. because when you make one thing the MOST important thing, that is the time you can get somewhere because you finally know what to do.

i’m sort of getting away from myself. it’s just sinking in that this moment right here is my life right now, and i know, that sounds so simple. i know that. but i have labored under delusions for so long now, delusions that have only built upon themselves over the years, snowballed, have buried themselves so deep within me and crusted over with layers, delusions that are implanted and have fused with me. that my life begins when i am perfect. my life begins when i flaunt a size six, my life begins when i learn to like coffee like a real adult, my life begins when my house is effortlessly clean and tidy, my life begins when i am fancy, my life begins when i start to give a shit about fashion, my life begins when i am put together every day, my life begins when i never eat a carb again, when i get up at 5:30 to work out, when i dance the night away with friends, when i spend nights in with my boyfriend, when he plans vacations for us, when i am engaged/married, when we have fancy date nights, when i take vacations four times a year, when people like me on the internet, when, when, when.

sometimes the bouncer wonders why i value quiet the way i do and it is because of that. it is because i spend most moments pushing towards an ideal, believing that i am going to cross a line and hear a bell and yes, THIS will be the moment it all begins.

it’s not like i needed a revelation to tell me this isn’t true. but i did need one to jolt me into altering my thinking, to make me tell myself to stop. to breathe. that this moment right here is what’s happening and it’s valid and it’s not a waiting game. it is my actual life and all i need to do is stop, breathe in, and OWN it.


my month of paleo.

towards the end of 2012, i knew i needed some kind of reset with my eating habits. my sugar consumption had gone kind of overboard, i was slowly realizing that i’m at least mildly lactose intolerant, and while i’m not typically a new year’s resolution maker, it was just an easy marker for making a change. i have never in my life been a thin person, and i’m working on accepting the idea that i never will be, so this wasn’t overtly about weight loss. i’ve also struggled with eating disorders and eating disordered thinking for a long time, so i try to be very careful with the idea of a diet, because chances are i’ll get really obsessive and unhealthy over it (although most of this country is obsessive and unhealthy about weight in general, but my body positivity rant is for another time). mostly, i knew i wasn’t doing it right and i wanted to hit the reset button. a month is an easy goal to try to stick to.

all of this in mind, sometime in december, i decided that for the month of january i was either going to go very low carb (which i’ve done before), or i was going to go paleo. for the uninitiated, paleo eating is meant to mimic that of our hunter gatherer ancestors, and you eliminate any and all grains, dairy, legumes, refined sugar and all of it’s cousins, and really, processed food. it’s meat, vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds. basically.

so here are the things i’ve learned along the way.

1. eating well is very expensive: the bouncer and i have typically spent approximately $100/week on food for the two of us for the house, and that’s with eating lunch out several days a week at work, and ordering takeout once a week-ish. we probably spent $650-$700 this month on food which is RIDICULOUS. that said, we bought lunch at work a lot less and have barely ordered takeout or eaten out at all. i also needed a bunch of paleo “supplies” like coconut oil – which i spent $30 on for the month, but i have a pretty huge jar now which will last me a while. eating produce and meat all of the time is very pricey, and it really highlights the problems with the politics that surround food in this country. again, a rant for another time. you’re supposed to eat as cleanly as possible on paleo – go organic as much as you can, do grass fed, antibiotic free, humanely raised meats – and i couldn’t do that all the way. i got a lot of nitrate and nitrite free bacon, and i’ve made a habit of buying hormone and antibiotic free chicken, but buying that kind of meat around my area of brooklyn is CRAZY expensive and i was already going way out of budget for this experiment.

2. you actually get used to it pretty quickly: the initial transition is kind of rough, but not for very long. the first week is fine – when you cut carbs in general your hunger cycles change within a few days, or mine did anyway (and usually do). i no longer got hungry quickly and intensely – it came on really slowly and i could go a lot longer between big meals. you can blame this on blood sugar and hormones like leptin, i think. it was about week two where i really craved things, and after that it was smooth sailing. i’d adjusted to my new foods, my new style of cooking, and the process of making sure i had snacks and lunch packed every day.

3. i haven’t really lost weight: this could come in time, or it could not. i know i’m definitely less bloaty and a tiny bit smaller, but for the most part i am the same. i have, however, not been skimping on nuts or fruit, or counting calories. i hate saying this because it feels like an excuse, but i’m pretty sure i have a difficult metabolism and i hold onto fat REALLY well. also, i’m not exercising (i think that’s a project for february). i did some research and i think if i wanted to truly focus on weight loss, i would need to watch my sugar and also start working out. i’m choosing not to be too concerned about it.

4. my energy levels haven’t changed: if you follow my life at all you know i struggle with low energy fairly consistently, and this was no different. i actually felt very, very tired during the middle of the month, but i think i was not eating enough veggies/protein/complete meals and too many nuts/fruits/snacky things. i’ve evened out, but i haven’t noticed a really significant uptick in energy or mental clarity.

5. you’ve got to do it the way that works for you: while i was intrigued by the idea of the whole 30, and it was pretty close to what i actually did, i can’t say i did one because i did knowingly go out of bounds. i had sushi twice, and frequently let myself have a square or two of dark chocolate in the evenings. i ate a few pieces of cheese. i did make sure to REALLY enjoy what i ate when i went off the plan, and i made a very conscious effort to make these small indulgences not in response to emotions. the concept of emotional eating actually makes me nauseous to think/talk about because it feels so deep, private, and shameful to me. what i learned is that i do have the power to treat or soothe myself in other ways, and there are very awesome ways to have tiny indulgences that are glorious and do not feel like derailment.

6. i drank: alcohol is off limits on paleo/whole 30, i think, but i drink pretty infrequently and i wasn’t concerned about it. i had a bunch of wine when i was out for alana’s birthday and i had the very best time, and, maybe not coincidentally, also drank some when i was out with alana and bob the other night. there are times when i unintentionally go months without drinking so, i’m not concerned.

7. this is totally do-able: on february first, i had a salad for lunch. i really don’t have a strong desire to go back to processed, shitty food that isn’t really food, and i’ve developed these habits so i’m of the mind that i’m going to stick with this as a lifestyle, for the most part. the bouncer decided to give himself 1-2 “cheat” meals a week and maybe i’ll follow that path, but i really enjoy the way i’m eating, and i feel like it’s become easier to make healthy food choices. i’m posting this after a week long vacation, and even though i was not at all strict when i was away, i found myself craving the good food i’d eaten throughout january (and i have some cauliflower rice on the stove right now).

8. i do want some modifications for the long term: i am really interested in beans. and cheese. i plan on not being so strict with my consumption of whole grains (quinoa, lentils, etc.) and while i intend to be more conservative with my dairy, i am not living without cheese. have i emphasized cheese enough?

more than anything, i’m proud of myself for making a decision and following through with it. i’m great at making grand, sweeping, declarations of What I Will Now Do with regards to food, exercise, and eating and i assign a lot of rules and i make shit really hard and i always fail. i wasn’t perfect with this, but i did an amazing job and shocked myself with what i am capable of.



you know, it’s not so bad to breathe. it’s actually really kind of wonderful to come home and drop all your shit and put on your softest, oldest yoga pants, that you’ve had since before they were called yoga pants. and then sit, and breathe in, and out, and that’s it. that is all you are allowed to do for five minutes. you are not allowed to get up, you are not allowed to start dinner, you’re not allowed to check twitter, and really, why don’t we just push all the things you have to do, the never-ending loop that runs like a brainwashing vhs tape through your head, why don’t we hit pause? for five minutes. so, i let myself do this.

i was intensely surprised at the way i could slow down. at how it is not failure to do so. i thought today of how my friend reminded me that i am more than the roles i play, that there is a woman, a person, under all of that. that i have form and shape and substance aside from what i do, who i do it for, the ways i connect. when i got up i was able to make a very clear and very manageable list. i abandoned the thought of dinner and ate a homemade larabar. i put some things away and dusted and re-ordered the top of my dresser, where i keep my me things, the spot i consider all mine in the small space i share. it had gotten really messy lately – maybe that says something.

i finished enough to make me happy, even though there’s a lot more to be done, and i sat and i sent a note i’d been meaning to. to a girl i’m not friends with anymore, but i have something of hers i’d like to return, and that’s the right thing to do. and if she is shocked and appalled to hear from me, well, at least i tried to do the right thing, right?

i thought about writing for you a little list of things i am, things to remind myself, things that might be news to you, but i’m not there yet. claiming identities, that feels…definitive. it feels like i will say x and you will say, “no, dominique, you are not x because a, b, and c” and your scrutiny, it scares me. this is ok though. i’ll mull those things over and i’ll make some sense of them first and i’ll build them as little mountains before i announce them, and then no one will have the power to knock them down.

and now, because i sat and i breathed in and out and i gave myself a break for five minutes to remind myself that i am human and that is fine and the whole world is not a contest in every moment, because i did this, i can choose what will make me happy tonight. and then i can do exactly that. if you are the kind of person who understands why the idea that you can choose to do things that will give you joy is kind of revelatory, then we will probably be friends. if you are not, well then, i envy you, truly.

pause every once in a while, guys. maybe even every day. i’m telling you, it’s worth it.