A breakthrough

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It’s been almost three years since I’ve ran a race.

I’ve run so much in my life.

I’ve ran almost every event in Track.

I’ve ran so many 5k’s, 10k’s, and a few half marathons.

I’ve even done a marathon.

That was all up until May of 2015.

My life consisted of running non stop for thirteen years.

Then I took a break.

I got married, was pregnant, and had a newborn.

It was a three year time period where I ran a few times here and there but not consistently.

And that was my problem.

Consistency.

I wasn’t running consistently.

This summer I decided to change that.

I started running a little.

A mile or two turned into three or four.

Then four four turned into five or six.

Next thing I know it’s November and I’m hitting 8:30 miles.

When I first ran after having Ian I was at about 10 minutes for a mile.

Which isn’t bad at all, it just wasn’t what I wanted for myself.

For someone who could go under five minutes in her prime, it was discouraging.

Being able to crack an 8:30 mile made me feel on top of the world.

Then it was eight minutes per mile.

And 7:40 after that once for a three mile run.

That was the only run where I went under eight minutes miles for a whole run.

I decided to sign up for the 10k today back in November.

It was a race I’ve done probably six or seven times before.

It was a flat course, fun, and I got a shirt out of it.

I love getting shirts from races.

I’m not going to lie, I was super nervous.

I had set a goal of running under 50 minutes, because if I stuck to eight minute miles I allowed myself a little bit of wiggle room to slow down if needed.

When setting goals I like to make it achievable and realistic, because that’s who I am.

I kept telling Jason my hard to reach goal, was to place top three in my age group.

I was going to be bummed if I didn’t’ honestly.

But Jason kept telling me “this is your own race, worry about yourself.”

And right before the race I was talking to my mom, I told her that there were some quick people out there, her response?

“You’re doing this for you.”

And I was.

It was for me.

I was the one training for the past few months.

The one who realized that her knees weren’t as strong as they used to be.

The one who had just had a kid fifteen months ago.

This was for me.

I got to do it alongside two of my favorite athletes I coach, that made it so enjoyable.

It was their first 10k and introducing them to that race was so fun.

When the race started I took off, in typical Megan fashion, a little faster than I wanted.

In my defense however, I wanted to get ahead of the pack.

Once I felt good I decided to stay at the pace I was at.

I felt okay.

And I was so excited.

I told myself to treat it like two separate three miles runs.

Out three miles, and back three miles.

Honestly the first two miles were the hardest.

I realized that I was running 7:16 pace and had to stick to it.

But that’s the thing.

I could.

And I was.

I was out there running faster than I had planned, and it was crazy to me.

That I was doing it.

Each mile I just kept talking to myself.

That’s it Megan.

One more mile down.

You’re almost there.

Don’t slow down you’ve got this.

I’ve ran that course so many times, so much that I knew when the finish was coming.

I knew when there was only a mile left.

I could feel my body wanting to slow down, but I wasn’t going to let it.

I turned the corner and I could see the finish line, but that wasn’t the best part.

I heard my mom, my dad, my sister, and Jason.

Cheering for me like they’ve always done.

As I was passing them feeling stronger than ever I heard Jason say, “go mommy” for Ian.

That’s when it hit me.

I’m running this race as a mom.

I’m running 7:30 mile pace as a mom to this amazing baby.

It was such a great feeling.

Realizing that my body could make this beautiful baby and then turn around and run 7:30 minute miles just 15 months later.

I was so proud of myself.

So stinkin proud.

After I crossed the finish line I took my participation medal with so much pride.

Normally they’re just a medal, but this one is probably one of my favorites.

A local runner that I’ve known since I started running came up to me and told me that it was good to have me back.

And I was.

Back to my old running self.

And it felt amazing.

I crushed both of my goals.

I ran a 47:15 and got first place in my age group.

Something I’m so incredibly proud of.

And the coolest thing?

I went back and compared my times to what I ran back in 2014 and 2015. Back when I felt like I was in great shape and working harder than I was now. I was so close to those times and paces.

2014.2015.2018.

2014 I finished with a 45:26 and 7:21 mile pace.

2015 I ran a 46:39 with a 7:31 mile pace.

2018, three years later after having a baby, 47:15 and a 7:37 minute mile pace.

I’m not normally super cocky, but I’m a badass.

The end.

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10 things for people to remember in their late twenties.

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I’m quickly approaching it.

My 30’s.

It’s so close but at times still feels so far away.

I can’t believe that in two years I’ll put my twenties behind me.

My college years.

Young adulthood.

Falling in love.

Becoming a mom.

This shit moves fast people.

Life is crazy that ways.

One day you’re counting down the days till you’re 21.

The next you’re complaining about that weird noise your bones make when you walk down the stairs.

The older you get in your twenties the more you wonder.

Am I doing this right?

And if not, why isn’t there some sort of rule book for this?

As someone who has almost two years left of being a twenty something..

(Cue heavy breathing and panicking)

I feel like I have a place to share with the world my experiences.

The things that I find so important to remember as you approach the later end of your twenties.

So here you have it folks,

10 things for people to remember in their late twenties.

  1. It’s ok to not have anything to do on a Friday night. You’re not a complete loser if you aren’t out at a club every Friday and Saturday night. The importance of your life doesn’t matter on how many shots you can take at a club or how many random phone numbers you can get. Going out is fine and all, but don’t bring yourself down by comparing your social calendars to those of whoever you follow on Instagram.
  2. Eat that doughnut. I should start by saying don’t eat all of the donuts, don’t go crazy or anything, but you don’t always have to turn them down.I always hear people saying “I shouldn’t” when getting offered sweets, but why shouldn’t you? Yes, don’t have a doughnut every day but if it’s Friday and you’ve had a long week, take that frickin doughnut. Live a little. You have the rest of your life to deprive yourself of donuts.
  3. Enjoy your birthday. Growing up I remember people telling me to enjoy my 21st birthday, because after that they start going downhill. But they don’t have to. You’re the judge of how you treat your birthday. Remember when you were growing up and you were so excited for your birthday almost as much as Christmas. All you wanted was the attention, balloons, presents, and cake. Your birthday was your day. Why does it have to stop. Approach each birthday with as much joy and excitement as you did when you were growing up, instead of another year older. Everyone enjoys to be happy on their birthday.
  4. Make time for your friends. This is probably the one I wish someone would have told me about. I met my best friends in college, and I thought that it would be easy, keeping in touch with them. There’s Facebook and all of that, so of course it’d be easy. But I was so incredibly wrong. You have to initiate it. You have to make the plans and schedule regular time to see them. You get busy in your late twenties, with family, work, and catching up on sleep, it’s easy to forget to talk to your friend for a day or two. Don’t let them slip away, make that time.
  5. Get rid of those negative people. If you don’t like someone, you don’t have to act as if you do. If they’ve done nothing but tear you down, take them out of your life. Look around and see if anyone in your life makes you feel like a lesser version of yourself. If they do, guess what? They don’t deserve you.
  6. Find something you love to do. For me, it’s this blog. Writing gives me something that is solely mine. This space, my words, the stories I tell, they’re mine. I started this blog at a time in my life when I knew I wanted something that was just for me. Something that I could use to express myself and fill my time. Something that I looked forward to doing. Find something that sets your soul on fire and run with it, and never look back.
  7. Like what you like. I was so worried of what people in college thought of me. I would listen to the “cool” music on my ipod in the library in hopes that someone would hear it. I wanted to be liked by everyone so badly that I would just take interest in what everyone else did. It wasn’t until second semester of my senior year when I took my creative writing class, because I wanted to, that I realized you can literally like whatever you want. If you want to take a writing class and no one else you know takes it, then do it. If you love Drake but also Van Morrison, who cares? Like whatever you want, it makes you who you are.
  8. Let yourself fall in love. Unless you met the love of your life when you were in High School, there’s a good chance you’re going to fall in love in your twenties. Let yourself do it. Don’t worry about their age or what they do for a living. Don’t worry about how you met or that none of your friends know them. Let yourself fall, completely without a safety net. Don’t hold back in anything you do, especially love. You might get hurt, and that’s ok, it’s part of the process.
  9. You might not have your dream job right away. You know that job you dreamed of when you were growing up? That job you always wanted or worked your butt off for in college? Just know, that it might not come right away. If it does, congratulations, I envy you. But if you’re like the rest of us, you won’t find your perfect job straight out of college. Sometimes it takes a few times to get it right. It might not be the job that you thought you would be doing growing up. If it’s that job that you don’t dread going to every day, that job that gives you so much purpose and you can fully say you’re happy with, that’s ok. Don’t stress about it too much early on, it’ll happen.
  10. Yon don’t have to be who they want you to be. This one is the most important. There’s this stigma about being a twenty something, especially if you’re in your late twenties. Everywhere you look you see different images of what your life should be like at that age, don’t let that decide who you are. If you’re a married mother of one, awesome. If you live with your cat and your longest relationship is with your How I Met Your Mother binge session that’s ok too. You don’t have to be who they want you to be, you don’t have to have it all figured out. I thought growing up that at this age you were supposed to know everything and have life figured out. I think my life is pretty great, but I don’t by any means have everything figured out. This is your time to find it, to find who you’re going to be.

Your twenties are your time.

Your time to discover who you are.

Your time to make mistakes, friends, and memories.

Your time to not know what in the world you’re doing and knowing that that’s ok.

That you don’t have to have it all figured out.

If you spend your Friday nights writing for your blog discovering a new love for Bruce Springsteen that’s perfectly ok.

In the end were all going through different things and learning lessons for ourselves.

You make the rules for your late twenties are going to go.

No one else.

That time I binge watched all of the Harry Potter movies..

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It was the week of the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2.

I really wanted to see it, but there was a big problem..

I had maybe seen one of the movies.

Or two.

But I didn’t care for them growing up.

All of you Potterheads out there are probably shocked.

Looking back, I was too.

I just had no interest in wizards and magic, I thought that I was too cool for it.

For Christmas one year I remember my grandma got each of us kids a Harry Potter book.

My brother got Harry Potter and The Sorcerer’s stone.

I got Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets.

And my sister got Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.

I attempted to read them, I really did.

But I didn’t have the attention span for reading.

I couldn’t stay focused.

I thought it was lame.

And I didn’t see any importance in it.

I was never able to read them.

Looking back now, I wish I would have known how much I would love them.

But that’s the great thing.

Even though I didn’t really start watching them until I was 21, it still brought me back to my childhood.

Seeing Hogwarts around the Christmas time still brings me so much joy.

Everything was so magical.

Ok ok, back to the story.

I decided that during the week of the release, I was going to watch every movie.

Because frankly I still didn’t have the patience to read the books.

I instantly fell in love.

Seriously.

It was so magical and whimsical and I had never seen anything like it.

I remember kind of watching the first two movies when I was younger but not really caring.

By the time I got to the third movie this time around, I couldn’t stop.

I couldn’t wait until the next.

I think I really got invested while watching the a Goblet of Fire, seeing how real everything got towards the end really stuck with me.

It was no longer childish, almost as if I was going through the stages of adolescence with the characters.

Things were getting darker and plots started to thicken.

The opening credits were filled with thunder and dark skies.

There was this shift from the good to evil.

You could see it, feel it.

I was emotionally invested.

So much that I was so incredibly angry after I finished the Half Blood Prince, without giving away any spoilers.

I felt like I was betrayed.

I felt lied to.

I was mad.

It was a movie.

Why was I so mad?

Because I was so invested. I was cheering for Harry, Ron, and Hermione.

It was just a movie, but here I was on the edge of my seat yelling at the tv.

I think I finished them all in a couple of days or so, and had to wait a few days before I went to see the Deathly Hallows part 2.

I was just so eager to finish it.

Envious of everyone who had read the books because they knew something I didn’t.

They knew how it ended.

I got to see it in theaters a few days later, and it was better than I imagined.

My favorite scene was in that movie.

My favorite love story.

The reason I want to read the books one day.

To experience that certain part of the series over and over again.

It was one of my better decisions that summer, to watch the movies.

To open myself up to something new that I once looked down on.

I was kind of sad once I finished them, sad that I didn’t get to experience them growing up.

The first book was published when I was 7, and the first movie when I was 11.

I could have given my younger self the gift of Hogwarts.

But then again, I have it now.

It brings out the child in me.

It makes me believe in something truly magical.

How beautiful is it that we can have something, at any age, that makes us feel so young and carefree.

That takes us to an imaginary place.

 

Big things are happening people.

As Fetty Wap would say, hey what’s up hello!

How has 2018 been treating you so far?

I’ve enjoyed my little impromptu break from blogging.

I really wanted a little bit of time to think.

To think about what I want to write about on my blog.

I usually get one or two blog posts up a month, and last month I wrote 20.

TWENTY.

That’s the big 2-0 my friends.

Honestly, it was really fun.

(Although I don’t want to do it again until next December.)

I loved sharing so many different stories and thoughts with anyone who wanted to read them.

Following a strict schedule I had set for myself.

The inner Monica Geller in me was so happy.

I’ve had exactly eight days now.

Eight days to sit and wonder what I want to write about.

If I sit and wait till something life changing happens, I might not be writing for a while.

Yet I’m still full of creative thoughts and this is my place to dump it all.

So I started thinking of schedules.

How I could write on certain days of the week and have a theme for each day.

I could give my readers something to expect on certain days.

That way my blog could have a little bit of normalcy.

And that’s what brought me here today.

I have come up with some sort of schedule, that for now, I will stick to.

If I come up with a better one or start to run out of ideas for what to write about..

I’ll switch it up.

But for now, here’s the expected schedule for Beyond Twenty Something.

Sundays- Writing days: Where I’ll write about my thoughts, life updates, or different writing prompts. Sundays are my free write days.

Thursdays- Throwback Thursdays: Funny right? Throwback Thursdays are my story days. I feel like I have a lot of stories to tell and Thursdays are my days to do so.

Saturday – Fun Day: I realized now that I should have had Sunday fun day because that sounds better, but Saturdays are more fun to me so were doing Saturday Fun Day. Saturday’s will be the days that I write about my favorite things, any playlist that I have been loving, or my top lazy day necessitates. Anything fun and creative will be reserved for Saturday.

There you have it everyone, my 2018 blogging schedule.

I rediscovered my love for blogging during my Blog to 2018 series.

I kind of hit a rut in the fall time and wasn’t sure what I wanted to write about.

Blogging every day for twenty days helped me find it again.

And I’m excited.

Oh so excited.

So get excited yourselves.

It’ll be a great ride.

Oh and my birthday is one month from today.

ONE MONTH!!

Ok that’s it.

Bye for now friends.

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I cheated.

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Share your inner most secret. Something you’ve never told anyone before.

I cheated.

I know I know.

It’s awful to cheat.

It was so hard for me to think of a secret that I’ve never told anyone.

Because I tell at least my sister everything.

Well clearly not everything.

I was ten and in the fourth grade.

I sucked at Math (and still do) and we had to take our fifth grade math placement test.

I sat by this super smart girl and cheated off of her test. I just stared right at her paper and copied her answers.

Don’t worry karma got me, I was placed in a math class higher than I should have been in and struggled.

PHEW.

That felt great to get off my chest.

Wait..

Did you think I cheated on someone by the title?

You must not know me that well.

I saw this list last Monday and have been thinking about a big secret that I’ve never told anyone.

This was the first and only one that came to mind.

First off, I don’t keep secrets.

Not because of some moral reason.

I just can’t keep them.

As I said above I always go running to Janelle.

I’ve kept a few secrets in my life, but only long enough to wait until the person finds out themselves because I can’t keep them in.

Second, I’m not really a rebel.

I don’t do things that I want to hide from anyone.

A few weeks ago I remember telling someone that my way of rebelling is going five miles over the speed limit.

Seriously.

I can see my sister laughing right now reading this because it’s true about both of us.

We follow the rules.

We didn’t really do anything terrible growing up.

And we always asked permission before going out or doing things.

We just prefer to follow the rules.

Some people get a sense of thrill from rebelling or doing something there not supposed to.

I really do love following rules.

It’s just who I am.

The fact that this is my biggest secret that I’ve never told anyone should tell you right there.

I’m the person that always says please and thank you.

Holds the door open for people.

Thinks rules were made to be followed.

Gets a weird joy out of cleaning.

And rebels by going five miles over the speed limit.

Not that anything’s wrong with people who do whatever they want or live these awesome carefree lives.

My brother is one of those people, and I envy him.

I love how he can just have this idea and act on it.

I physically can’t do that.

I would love to but I can’t.

It’s so funny how siblings can be similar but completely different.

But it’s true.

Janelle and I follow the rules and my brother makes his own.

And that’s fine.

It’s why my biggest life secret is that I cheated on a test in 4th grade.

And I’m perfectly ok with that.

I’m who I am.

Hi my names Megan and my biggest life secret is that I cheated on my math test in fourth grade.

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Christmas Magic

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The holidays are my absolute favorite time of year, as if it’s a surprise. I decorate my office with Christmas lights, blast Christmas music from my car, and watch Elf as many times as I can. Like any little kid I would wake up on Christmas morning and sneak a look at my presents, and beg my parents to get up at the crack of dawn to open presents.

Some of my favorite memories involved Christmas at my Grandmas house. I swear the Christmas tree was always so tall that it could reach the ceiling. In my mind there were hundreds of presents under the tree to match the size of my family. We would have my grandma’s famous cinnamon rolls, except for that random year she served us fruit, and everyone would eat breakfast before they opened presents.

To say my family was huge is an understatement. It was always so loud and so full of joy as my grandpa would pass out presents and we would wait for every kid to have a present before we tore them open without even looking at who it was from.

Christmas was magical.

I know it sounds cheesy, but it was as wonderful as the thought of snow on Christmas morning.

Things took a turn two days after Thanksgiving in 2010.

My family was out shopping when we got the worst news.

The drive back home was silent.

The feeling of pain sat in my stomach and felt like it would never leave.

I hate thinking about it, and I usually try not to.

My grandpa was the coolest person I knew.

He was tiny and mighty.

Tough and loving.

He would never get mad at me because he loved me so much more than I probably knew.

Losing someone around the holidays is the hardest thing anyone can ever go through.

You see images of people singing Christmas carols with their families and smiling around the Christmas tree, and the last thing you want to do is force a smile.

Things were different that year, everyone was still close, but it was like our rock was gone. Even though he spent most of the time after Christmas dinner asleep in his chair, he was still the most special part of the day.

And I didn’t realize it until after he was gone.

My sister and I made it our goal the Christmas after that year to be as happy as we could.

We baked Christmas cookies and gave them to everyone we could.

We listened to the Christmas music radio station every time we drove to school.

We got a little tree for our bedroom and decorated it.

It was nice to try and see the best in a tough time. Forcing smiles and spreading holiday cheer was easier than thinking about the loss we had a year ago.

Since that year I have wanted to make sure I spend Christmas the right way. Be as happy as I can, spend as much time with my family as I can, and enjoy every second of it all.

I think that’s why I get so excited when I see Elf on TV and hear Wham’s Last Christmas on the radio. It means that magical time of year is here.

That time of year that I’m reminded just how much my family means to me and how important it is to make the best out of the holiday.

I have encountered people who aren’t always so excited about Christmas as I am. My early Christmas music makes them roll their eyes or they insist on reminding me that it’s not even Thanksgiving, and that’s totally ok. Everyone can celebrate the holidays whenever and however they please, I just wish that everyone could see the magic in it like I do.

That sounds so cheesy.

Calling a holiday magical.

But it is.

I just love trying to see the magic in what was once a hard time.

And it still is.

You always want your loved ones around, especially during the holidays.

But when they aren’t you can’t do anything but try and see the magic in it to honor them as well as you can.

That’s how I saw it at 20 and that’s how I still see it today.

Especially now that I have my own little family.

I want so bad to create this magical winter wonderland that Ian is in awe of. I want to see him stare at Christmas lights and believe in Santa his whole life.

I want him to have memories of Christmas morning like I have.

I want him to look at his grandpa passing out gifts the way I use to look at mine.

That’s why I turn into Buddy the Elf during Christmas, and why I listen to Christmas music in November.

I don’t know any other way.

I want to experience the magic of Christmas that I did when I was little, and I want Ian to experience the same.

 

 

 

Beyond Twenty Something

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Yesterday marked the one year anniversary of my blog, beyond twenty something.

A year of writing whatever I want and sharing it with anyone who wants to read it.

It may not seem like a lot to most people but to me this was huge.

Not only was I sharing my opinions and stories with other people, but I was making myself vulnerable to anyone who might think negatively about it, and that’s a big deal to me. I tend to worry about what other people think of me.

I know I know..I’m working on it.

I had started a blog prior to this one, but I told no one and deleted it after a few months. I was incredibly embarrassed at the thought of letting people into my mind and opening myself up to peoples criticism.

It wasn’t until I saw my best friend create a blog that I got so inspired. I’ve probably quoted this a handful of times on here before but my favorite thing she ever told me was..

“Do what you want and say how you feel, because those who matter don’t mind and those who mind don’t mater.”

I opened up my laptop and started writing, about my life as a new mom. The words just poured out, as easy as it’s always been for me to just write how I feel. When I was all done I felt so many different emotions. I was proud of myself for this step I was about to take, but so incredibly nervous at the same time, and then it hit me.

What am I going to name this thing?

What words or phrases sum up my life at this very moment in time?

 I went through a few and kept sending them off to my sister for approval, every one slightly better than the next, until I came to a realization.

I’m sitting here at 26….

married

a son who’s a week old

a solid job and a comfortable life.

I am more than just a 20 something.

All my life, well all throughout college at least, I’ve heard of 20 something.

That time in your life that you’re supposed to go crazy, spend money, travel, care about only yourself, and ignore your responsibilities.

According to the 20 something stigma, I was doing it all wrong.

But I wasn’t.

I absolutely loved the exact spot that I was in.

I felt like at my age, I had things under control, and I still do feel that way…

Some days.

I am a mom, there are days where I wake up and the first thing that I think about is going to bed that night.

It happens.

Living in a world where Instagram shows you that you need to go out every Saturday night and party with your friends, or that you need to live your life this certain age at 26 and not be “settled down” already, it makes it hard to think that you’re doing life your way just fine.

But I am.

I realized in that moment that even though I sit here, being a 20 something, I was beyond a twenty something.

That most days I do have my stuff together.

That I’m a wife, mom, daughter, and most of the time a responsible adult.

Adult.

Most people cringe when they hear that word.

They think that adults have no fun, zero time to do anything for themselves, get no sleep, work boring jobs, and just have an uneventful life.

That’s completely false though, except the no sleep thing.

That’s true.

Even though some days I still feel 20, I know that I ‘m an adult and I have responsibilities and stuff that I need to do.

And it’s fun.

Getting my shit together.

(Sorry grandma)

Waking up in the morning and getting ready for your job that you worked your butt off for.

 Getting to see the smiling faces of your son and husband as they get their day started.

Jamming out to Christmas music in September on your daily commute because you want to.

Knowing that you’ve created this amazing life for yourself by working hard and now you get to spend it with the best little family that you and the love of your life created.

It makes you feel like you can take on the world.

Obviously there are some days where I get stressed out and eat an entire box of brownies that I just made, those days happen.

But I know that once that day passes it’s going to be okay.

This blog is my corner of the internet to do whatever I want, say anything that I need to say, and share stories that have taught me the most valuable life lessons.

But after the first year of having it, I think I’ve just now started to realize the theme of this.

The reason behind the hundreds of words I type and the music that floods my headphones while I write.

That at whatever age you are..

Wherever you live..

Whoever you call your family..

However you choose to live your life..

That it’s okay.

That it will all be just fine.

It’s how you choose to fill the chapters of your story, and no matter how you choose to do it, it’s beautiful at the end.

And it all works out.

That you don’t have to live your life according to your age or how others think you should.

If you’d rather spend your Saturday nights curled up on the couch drinking wine and watching a Harry Potter marathon, that’s fine.

You make the rules.

You create the life you want, and you live it with all of the passion that fuels your days.

That you are more than a number and beyond capable of living your life exactly how you want to.