Blog to 2019 Day 2: How to be unapologetically yourself?

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How to be unapologetically yourself?

By far one of the toughest questions I’ve ever been asked.

By someone who I really admire.

I asked people on Instagram the other week if they had any advice for me.

This was the first question I got.

It definitely left my puzzled.

What does it even mean, to be unapologetically yourself?

And do I somehow reflect that to others?

That I am truly unapologetically myself?

Because I wasn’t sure if I was.

I literally question everything.

I doubt myself.

And I wouldn’t say I’m confident.

Far from it, and that’s been a struggle since I was 17.

But I own that.

I own these faults.

I own my mistakes

Because they make me who I am.

Those times I chased down love that didn’t exist.

The times I followed others hoping it would lead me to myself.

Everything I’ve done in life made me who I am right now.

Every scar.

Broken heart.

Mistake.

Has formed the person who I see every morning in the mirror.

And I love her so much.

She’s been through some tough shit.

But she knows how to own it.

You kind of just have to accept it.

Accept those things that you think are flaws.

Those are you.

Because guess what?

We all have them.

Maybe some worse than others.

But we’re all messed up.

We just live in this weird time.

A time that our parents didn’t have to grow up in.

Where all you have to do is pull up Instagram or Facebook and instantly lose self esteem.

People are going to try and tell you that they’re life is perfect.

And it’ll leave you questioning yours.

You might not realize it but it totally does.

Here’s a secret.

None of us have perfect lives.

Why waste your time being so worried about having everything perfect? Or worried about how others perceive you?

My dad never sugar coated things for me as a kid, and I will forever be grateful for that.

I take so much of that into my own life.

Why sugar coat who we are?

Why say that we’re happy and fake these perfect smiles when we’re having a bad day?

Embrace the mess.

Embrace the shit.

Embrace the “I don’t know what the hell I’m doing” because that’s you.

That’s where you learn who you really are.

If you’re going through a hard time, take it and run with it.

Don’t shut it down.

Don’t cover it up with filters and happy Instagram captions.

Embrace it.

Because that’s what life is.

It’s about making mistakes and learning from them.

Having broken hearts so that you can learn how to put it back together.

Feeling like you’re completely at rock bottom so that the top feels that much better.

It’s ok to be broken.

It’s ok to be messy.

Nothing’s wrong with that.

Feel that pain.

Really feel it.

Take it and remember everything about it.

So that when it’s gone, you take something from it.

And in the end you can look at yourself and your life and be happy with it.

Even if there are faults in it.

Because there will be.

There always will be.

But you can’t question yourself because of it.

It’s your story.

At times it may be tragic.

It might leave you not wanting to finish it.

You may slam the book shut and refuse to except how it’s going.

But don’t do that.

Pick it back up.

Keep going.

Stay strong.

Because there’s a happy ending.

You just have to wait for it.

It’s easy to look at the lives of others and wonder how they do it.

How they clearly seem to be living this perfect life.

Or how to seem to be completely themselves.

Just know, they struggle too.

And it’s ok.

I think in order to be unapologetically ourselves, we have to accept that.

That were not going to be perfect.

That not every picture is going to be Instagram worthy.

That some days you’re going to cry three separate times before noon.

You wonder if you’re doing a good job.

If you’re going to be okay.

And you will.

Just take every little thing about your life and accept it.

Stop living life for the acceptance of others and live it for the acceptance of yourself.

Do it to make yourself happy.

Do it in spite of everything that’s hurt you.

Everything that’s tried to break you.

Just be yourself.

Be that person who gets too emotionally involved in things.

Who loves love.

That person who has gone through so much and is better because of it.

Once you start embracing the beautiful mess that you are, you’ll really surprise yourself.

Hope that helps. ❤

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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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Dear 17 year old me.

Megan,

BREAK UP WITH HIM.

Sorry I had to make sure you got that.

Can you believe you’re about to be a senior in High School?! Your last season of Cross Country is about to happen and after that Track.

This time next year you’ll be going to college.

It’s getting real.

I’m here, your twentyseven year old self, to tell you that you turn out just fine.

There will be some tough times this year, but you make it through.

Try your hardest not to worry what everyone thinks ok? You think you’re awesome and that’s enough. I know you’ve spent the last few months with someone that treats you like crap, but I’m here to tell you that if you dump him you’ll be much better off.

Think before you sign to a college. Look at your options and don’t just think you know everything. The one you end up choosing is fine while it lasts though. You’ll have a fantastic cross country season and meet some memorable people, but you end up attending the number two school after all. and you love it.

I also want to tell you to not do anything different when it comes to running, I don’t want anything to change the outcome of your final year of running for McKay.

Oh and you end up coaching there, and it’s one of the best decisions you’ll ever make.

Don’t skip class, except to go get Dutch Brothers with Janelle, those will be some of your favorite memories.

Speaking of Janelle, be nice to her. She’s way cooler than you think. Treat her like she’s your best friend because she is, and when she tells you that someones bad for you, listen. If you’re by Janelle tell her the same thing, as many times as you can.

Oh and Curtis. I know he’s going to be an obnoxious sophomore but he turns out to be one of your favorite people. Know that when he makes fun of you or gives you a hard time, it’s because he likes you…at least I’m pretty sure….that’s what I tell myself.

Give mom and dad a break, they really do want what’s best for you and are right most of the time. And stop bugging them about getting a dog, you’ll get one soon.

When you’re leaving work the day of the Chris Daughtry concert this summer, turn right on sunnyview not left.

When it comes to boys, just don’t date any of them. They’re so stupid in high school,  I know I sound like mom and dad but I’m being serious. You literally see none of them after high school anyways. One of them in particular gets you in a lot of trouble and adds so much unwanted stress in your life. Oh and all of them are stupid in College too.

Start watching Grey’s Anatomy, they’re only on season four. You’ll thank me later.

Do whatever it is you want to do. Don’t worry what’s cool or not, you end up wasting so much time doing that. Listen to your rap music, roll the windows down, and sing at the top of your lungs.

Oh that also reminds me, don’t be afraid to drive. Just suck it up and get over that fear.

Start reading the Harry Potter books and watch the movies as they come.

Spend as much time as you can with Grandpa.

Love yourself first.

I want to tell you that’s it all works itself out. Things fall apart and even better things fall into place. People will walk out of your life and it won’t matter in ten years, you’ll meet better ones. You’re going to make mistakes and wonderful decisions. Take as many pictures as you possibly can and remember the time you spend with friends.

If I could I would give you a huge hug right now, I know this summer is a big one. Just know to not second guess your gut. You have all of the answers, just do what you believe is right. Even if it doesn’t feel like it, I promise it all works itself out.

I’m proud of you Megan. Seriously.

You might not realize it at this very moment but you’re pretty awesome the way you are.

You are the only one that can limit your greatness, remember you are enough.

Oh, don’t worry about getting a locker in senior hall. I know how big of a deal it is but you get one I promise.

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Pinterest in Real Life: Candy Dipped Brownies

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I’m not a cook.

I try to cook.

Big difference.

Sometimes it turns out great and I’m pleasantly surprised.

Other times I get this weird looking mess that sometimes tastes good.

Pinterest has become my best friend in recent years, giving people like me hope. Sometimes they are a bust, but other times you’re left having something Instagram worthy.

I decided to start a new series on my blog called Pinterest in Real Life where I try something I find on Pinterest out in real life and see if it’s possible to make pizza in a crock pot.

I’m still a little hesitant on that one..

The other night I decided to make candy dipped brownies as my first Pinterest in Real Life experiment.

I love brownies.

It doesn’t matter what kind of brownies, I love them all. So let’s just say I was a little excited to try this one out.

For this recipe you’ll need..

2 sticks of butter
3 cups of semi sweet chocolate chips
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup of brown sugar
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
5 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
2 TBSP cocoa powder
1 1/3 cup all purpose
1 cup white chocolate chips
A lot of patience
Anything that sounds good to dip your brownies in.

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First thing you want to do is preheat to 350 degrees.

While you wait, spray a 10×10 baking pan with cooking spray. Don’t forget this one, no one likes brownies stuck to the pan.

Also, don’t use anything bigger than a 10×10, a 9×9 would probably work but don’t try to be different. I thought a bigger pan would be fine but my brownies ended up being too thin.

In a microwave safe bowl melt together two sticks of butter (no one said it was going to be healthy) and 2 cups chocolate chips until they’re melted, mine took about 2 minutes in 30 second intervals.

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Once you have you’re pretty little chocolate mixture mix in sugar and brown sugar.

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After that pour in your vanilla.

Next step is to beat in five eggs, one at a time. I did two at a time and the last one standing got to be featured in my picture.

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In a separate bowl mix together the salt, cocoa powder, and flour.

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After that combine you’re chocolate delicious mixture with your dry ingredients.

Pour everything in your pan…a 10×10 not anything bigger.

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Bake that bad boy for about 30 minutes or until you can place a toothpick in the middle of it and nothing sticks to it.

Thanks mom and dad for that tip.

While the brownies are baking get all of your toppings out and pour them in different bowls.

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When finished baking, take your patience out of the fridge and use it.

Seriously.

Don’t rush.

If I would have waited overnight they might have actually looked like the Instagram picture.

Once they’re cool cut them into squares and cut those squares diagonally.

In two separate bowls melt together your left over chocolate chips and white chocolate chips, those are going to be what gets your candy to stick to the brownies.

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Once your chocolate is melted, begin dipping the brownies in chocolate and on to the candy. Place them on parchment paper, which I just realized the recipe said, and let them sit at room temperature for an hour or so. I put them in the fridge to try and get solid and that worked just fine too.

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This recipe was crazy, there was so much going on and my kitchen took a beating. Not to mention I had to clean baby bottles in the middle of this all and help my husband give a baby with a poopy diaper a bath.

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These didn’t look exactly like the picture but I learned that if I was to do them again, I would add a little more patience to the mix.

I really enjoyed it though, it was fun making a recipe knowing that if I messed up it really didn’t matter, that it would make my post even more interesting. It was fun making something with absolutely no expectations knowing that at least I had brownies at the end of the day!

If you think of something that would be fun to test out from Pinterest, let me know. Or if you want to be a taste tester, I’d take those too!

OG Recipe here!

 

 

Megan’s Month: May 2017

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The older I get the more I realize that days go by faster.

Experiences fly by just enough for you to take a picture, and next thing you know the year is almost over.

Everyone always told me before Ian was born to be careful because time flies by so fast.

I would just laugh, roll  my eyes, and assume I know everything like usual.

But I was wrong.

The next thing I know my little man is turning seven months old and I’m left wondering how it all went by so fast.

How my favorite track season ended.

How my little man is so close to crawling.

How some of my favorite kids will be graduating soon.

How I am inching closer and closer to 30.

Okay….maybe that was a bit dramatic but you get my point?

When I was in my early twenties time stood still. Breakups were the end of the world, work lasted forever, and tough workouts felt like they were going to kill me.

Now at 27, I’m left begging the hand on the clock to slow down.

Last night I was watching my son inches away from crawling and had this crazy thought, that there will be a time when my husband and I think to ourselves about when he couldn’t crawl.

That we’ll look at each other and say..

Remember when he couldn’t crawl.

Remember when he was so small he could fall asleep on our chest.

Remember when he couldn’t talk.

That these moments happening now, will be memories sooner than I can realize. That I’ll look back at these times in five years and think about how they just felt like yesterday.

I do that a lot.

Think about how just five years ago I was a senior in College about to embark on life.

How I swore that I knew everything, that my boyfriend at the time was the best thing ever, and how my parents knew nothing.

I was wrong.

About everything.

Just as much as I was wrong about what I thought I knew, I was wrong about time moving slow.

That has been my theme this month.

Time.

Time moving too fast.

Not enough time to get things done.

Making the best of the time you have.

Time, Time, Time.

The older I get the more I value time. More than I ever thought I would. When you’re younger you feel like you’re stuck in one spot forever, or that your biggest problem is so much bigger than it actually is.

But now that I’m getting older I realize that’s not the case.

Time doesn’t stand still, it goes by so fast. It’s so important to stop in the moment and remember everything about where you are and what you’re doing. Remember the people you’re with, the way you feel, and the sounds that you hear.

Remember it all.

I was so bummed out at the beginning of the month when I realized the track season was almost over.

I couldn’t believe my little guy was already seven months old.

I can’t believe it’s almost June and in a couple of weeks I have to see some of my favorite kids graduate.

I tried my best to really remember everything and everyone I was with in those moments, those moments that would soon be memories.

Those moments that I’ll look back on when my Freshman are Seniors and I’ll wonder how four years went by so fast.

Or when Ian’s has his first day of school and all I can think about was when he couldn’t even crawl yet.

Time has a funny way of sneaking up on you when least expect it, kind of like June did to me this month.

But I don’t hate it.

I’m excited to keep making memories and enjoying the moments I’m in.

I like time.

Here’s some other things that I’ve liked this month..

My new camera.

Family walks at the park.

Sex and the City.

Lifting Weights.

Not buying coffee as much.

Hurricane by Luke Combs.

I appreciate the month of May. I appreciate the great moments that led to memories, and the times that I wish time would have stood still. I appreciate all of the times I stopped to take a deep breath and really take in the moment as I was in it.

So thank you May.

Thank you for teaching me a lesson that I thought I had down.

Thank you for giving me so many memories.

Thank you for being so good to me.

Next time I write this we will be half way through the year, and that blows my mind.

I look forward to the next half of the year, but for now I’m going to try and really think about the moment I’m in. Appreciate everything and every one.

Soundtrack to May 2017:

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Quote of the month:

“Do more than just exist.”

Fearlessly.

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Fearlessly.

It’s a word right?

Well the little red line telling me I’ve made a spelling error isn’t there so I’m making the executive decision that its a word.

You might have heard the word fearless before, in a Taylor Swift song or on a girls Instagram caption. According to google fearless is defined as

a lack of fear.

I’m going to call googles bluff on this one. I think it’s almost impossible for someone to not have a single fear. I won’t say it’s completely impossible, but its borderline impossible. Everyone is afraid of something.

To me, the word fearless has a different meaning. I think being fearless is living in spite of the things that you fear. Fearless is knowing what you’re afraid of and doing it anyways. If you’re terrified of spiders but you squish that giant spider on the wall, you’re fearless.

It’s a small example but its still showing that someone was fearless.

Think about it.

If someone’s afraid of spiders and they kill it, they just did something they were afraid of.

If you can’t swim but you jump in the deep end because you want nothing more than to know how to swim.

You sign up for a marathon even though you’ve never ran more than 14 miles in your life and you can’t fathom doing another 12.

You’ve gotten your heart broken so many times but you decide to take a chance and text this incredibly cute guy because you can’t stop thinking about him.

All examples of being living in spite of your fears.

You aren’t being completely fearless, you are doing something fearlessly.

You are recognizing that something scares you, that it holds you back from getting what you want out of life. You realize that yes, you have a fear but it’s not stronger than you. That you are so much more than what you’re  afraid of. You take a deep breath and do it, whatever it is, and you do it fearlessly. As if in that moment in time, your fear doesn’t exist.

I write encouraging note cards for my athletes before every race, there first meet is tomorrow and I found myself using one word many times.

Fearless.

That’s how I got to this blog post. I started thinking about that word and what I was telling my kids to do. I was telling them to be fearless.

I was telling them that even though they might be nervous for their first meet to not let that hold them back. To run fast even though this was their first time doing this event, or run as if you’re the fastest person out there even though according to paper you might not be. Fearless.

I have grown to love this word so much and everything associated with it. To be fearless you must have confidence, strength, bravery, and heart. Everything that is important in life, especially when you’re a runner.

I can think of one time in particular when I was fearless. I was sixteen and I was running my second distract track meet for the 3000 against some big competition. I believe I came in ranked 8th or so. It must have been 85 degrees outside, it was the first event of the day and there I was, a little 100 pound scared to death high school sophomore, standing next to sixteen other girls.

I was scared. I felt like there was so much pressure but I ran. I honestly can’t remember much except the fact that I just kept running. I remember having this feeling every time I passed another girl.

There goes another one.

This feels so good.

I have to keep passing people.

Next thing I know I sprint through the finish line seven and a half laps later completely dead. My teammate came over to the fence and asked me if I knew what I just did. Obviously I had no idea I just kept running and passing people. She yelled at me “You took second place!! You’re going to State!” I was so insanely happy and I just remember it clicking.

I was afraid that I was going to fail, but something clicked inside me. Something told me, who cares if you fail, go out there and run as if you can’t fail.

Yes, everything in my life I can relate back to running.

But it’s one of my favorite examples of living fearlessly.

I believe we all have fears, but if we simply go through life letting those fears take control of us we will always be stuck.

We will never find out what more we are capable of if were afraid to try anything.

We will never see our true potential.

“Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire.”

This quote sums it up perfectly.

Whatever passion you have in life, whatever sets your soul on fire and consumes you, do anything you can to pursue that. Yes, it might be terrifying and might seem impossible but that’s the fear talking. Sometimes we let the fear of the unknown over power our ability to make our dreams come true.

The thing I’m afraid of most in life, is failing.

But I continue to live my life fearlessly in spite of it. I continue to try and grow in pursuit of the things I desire most in life.

If we all just stopped trying once we got scared no one would be able to do anything truly amazing.

So live in spite of those fears.

Live fearlessly.

Megan’s Month: February 2017

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February is my second favorite month next to December. It’s my time to shine. My birthday is the 8th and Valentine’s Day is less than a week later. I love that it’s still winter outside but that there are days that feel like spring. It can be freezing cold with the sun shining as if it’s July. I adore this month and all the love it has.

February doesn’t feel the same about me.

At least not this year.

It’s as if February skipped a couple of months and wanted to play an April fool’s joke.

I won’t go into the detail but it all started on the 1st of the month when I got some weird stomach bug and I spent the entire day after sleeping. I was literally asleep all day. It took about three days to start feeling a little better when I got my husband sick with the exact same thing. My parents were amazing and watched Ian for us while we sanitized the house and tried our hardest to evict all of the germs that tried to call our house their home.

I started to feel better the night before my birthday and woke up on my actual birthday with a sore throat. It got worse as the days passed and turned into my barely being able to speak, when I started to get my voice back I developed this obnoxious cough.

Fast forward to today, the last day of the month and I am finally starting to feel better.

My cough hasn’t quite gotten the message that it needs to leave, but other than that I am finally starting to feel ok.

There are 28 days in the month of February and I was sick for all 28 days.

Being sick reminded me of something that I really needed to hear this month, suck it up and be thankful.

There were so many times this month when I was discouraged and annoyed, being sick for four weeks straight will do that to you. I found myself not excited for much or just feeling blah. I had to remind myself (thanks to the awesome people in my life) of all the amazing things in my life and the reasons to be happy.

It seems dumb and repetitive. Why would you have to remind yourself of all the great things in your life? Shouldn’t you know all of this already?

It’s easier said than done.

Sometimes you need to sit down with a pen and piece of paper and just write down everything you have and everything you love. Really stare at that list and think about everything, take it all in and realize it’s not as bad as it seems.
I did that a few times this month and I found that it really helps when you’re struggling.

This month had some great moments too, don’t get me wrong.

My birthday was spent with some fantastic people and I received some awesome and thoughtful gifts. Ian’s daycare had him stamp a piece of paper with his little foot and it said “happy birthday mommy love Ian” that right there made me cry. I know it obviously wasn’t his handwriting but god it was so sweet.

Valentine’s Day was extra special this year because I had a new Valentine and Jason made me heart shaped brownies..brownies are the way to my heart.

I spent a day and a half at Lincoln city with my family and friends which was fun and much needed. Ian got to see the beach for the first time..not sure how much he saw but we’ll remember it!

I learned that I can paint as long as I have some cider by my side and my sister to laugh with/at.

This month I also took on a huge challenge of completing 27 acts of kindness for my 27th birthday. The plan was to start this on February 1st and do it the week leading up to my birthday. Obviously I got a late start but I completed it in five days and it was the most satisfying and uplifting thing ever. I am so glad I decided to start off my 27th year with that challenge.

February turned out better than I had expected. If you would have asked my on the 2nd I would have told you I wanted to completely skip it but I’m so happy I didn’t. I was reminded to persist and honestly just suck it up.

Bad days happen, it’s about how you handle it.

That’s my theme this month.

And when all else fails just put your big kid pants on and suck it up. That’s what you have to do. Sometimes you have no other option but to do just that. You can’t avoid things, you can’t give up and you can’t fail. You have to proceed with the faith in yourself and the joy of your life in your heart.

Some other things I have been loving this month..

Pizza.

The entire Post Malone “Stoney” album.

Burt’s Bees throat drops aka my candy of choice this month.

Teaching Ian to take selfies.

The Lady Gang Podcast.

Working out on my lunch breaks at work.

Gratitude lists.

Overall February turned out better than I thought it would be and I am excited to move on to the next month. With the track season starting and spring joining us mid-way through the month I think it has potential to be a really good month.

Soundtrack to February 2017:

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Quote of the month:

“In any given moment we have two options..to step forward into growth or to step back into safety.”-Abraham Maslow