Three pictures.

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Choose three photos and write a post about how you feel looking at them, where you were, what you were doing, what it was like.

Today’s post required a bit of homework.

I searched through my photos on my phone.

Facebook pictures.

And my Instagram feed.

So many pictures throughout my lifetime.

Maybe it’s because throughout my lifetime there’s been an emphasis on taking pictures and sharing them with the world.

Regardless of why I have so many pictures, and I’m glad I do.

Pictures capture exactly what I was doing in that moment.

How I was feeling.

Who I was with.

I’m happy it’s the norm to take as many pictures as I do.

These three pictures that I’ve selected today are the three that I saw and instantly smiled.

Not necessarily the best pictures ever, or the one’s that have defined my life in any magnificent way, but the pictures that instantly made me smile when I saw them.

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Meet my best friend Nicole.

This picture was after one of my best races in College ever.

Probably my best race.

I had just come off of my first win in a Western Oregon uniform down in Long Beach. It was an 800 and I was feeling good.

Nervous, but good.

Could I do it again?

This girl had been one of my biggest supporters that year.

She would help me focus and relax before every race.

We were racing the 1500 together that day.

I ended up winning the race with a huge 5 second PR of 4:42.

I was absolutely shocked and so happy.

I needed that PR and I had just won my second race in a row.

Not even realizing how tired I was, I turned around to see where she was.

She came sprinting in for 4th place with a huge seasons best at the time of 4:55.

Getting to celebrate with her was always so fun.

No matter what, we would always be genuinely happy for each other.

This picture was taken after the race, pure happiness on each of our faces.

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I’m not lying when I say that this is one of my favorite pictures.

Ever.

Including my two favorite people.

I was still living at home and Janelle and I decided to go to Target together, like we always did.

Jason was on his way over to our house for dinner when he said he’d just meet us at Target.

I hadn’t seen him all day.

We were texting each other to find out where the other one was when we saw it.

THEY.WERE.MATCHING.

I was dead.

From beanies, to identical sweatshirts, all the way down to black Nike pants with the same exact shoes.

It was seriously the funniest thing and I have so much joy even to this day looking at this picture.

Walking around Target with these two dressed identically was the best thing.

It’s so funny how looking at a picture from three years ago can still bring me this much joy.

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August 13th 2014.

If it looks like this picture was taken by someone creeping behind a crowd of people, that’s because it was.

You can’t see us that well, but that doesn’t matter.

I love this picture.

Jason and I had gotten dressed up and went to dinner at the restaurant in the Eiffel Tower in Vegas.

We planned this fancy date in April.

Of course I thought it was special, but didn’t think it was going to be this special.

He was convinced that we needed to watch the fountains at the Bellagio after, and I was in pain from my shoes.

I thought it was weird that he kept trying to get the best spot, and that he was weirdly annoyed when a Brittney Spears song was playing.

He also kept looking around..

Everywhere.

When he dropped down to one knee I completely forgot that there were people around.

After he proposed, and I obviously said yes, he said “what would you say if I told you your family was around the corner?”

They were on this trip with us but I had no idea they were watching the whole thing.

My family, uncle, cousins, and grandma came running around the corner.

My dad with his video camera in hand.

It was such a special moment, and to get to share it with my family was the best.

Pictures can do amazing things.

They can capture the biggest moments of your life.

And the small, funny moments that cause you so much joy.

I’m glad I have so many folders on my computer with pictures from the last 9 years.

And 5,155 pictures on my camera roll.

Every one has some sort of memory attached to them.

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Dear Body.

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How do you feel about your body? Why not write a personal letter to your body telling it how you feel.

Dear Body,

Hey it’s me. How are you doing? I know we’ve been through a lot together, and I just wanted to tell you that you’re doing a great job.

I treated you pretty well when we were growing up.

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I never broke a single bone, and always made relatively healthy choices.

Kept you in good shape.

You’re welcome.

I know running helped.

We worked out every day together and you always kept me going.

I put you through miles 

and miles

and miles of running.

And you always gave me your all.

You never left me hanging and came through for me when I needed you.

We ran through grass and mud, on road and gravel, across cities and states.

Through all of that you hardly had any injuries.

Even though I didn’t always do a “proper” cool down, or stretched when I was supposed to, you recovered like a boss.

And for that, I’m grateful.

I did however, want to say that I’m sorry.

For all of those times through my late teenage years and early twenties.

When I said and thought those terrible things about you.

When I thought you were fat.

When I took you for granted.

When I didn’t appreciate how beautiful and strong you were.

There were times through college where I would look in a mirror and be mad at you.

Wondering how we could run all of those miles together, and I still wasn’t happy with how you looked.

And I’m so sorry.

Looking back at pictures of us throughout our college years, you were so strong.

I can’t believe I thought my muscular and tough thighs were fat.

I can’t believe I wanted you to look better than you did.

I hope you can forgive me.

If it helps, I can see it now.

I’ll never forget that time you helped me through the marathon.

Even though we had a rough moment at the end.

That fall and blackout was so scary. But even though consciously I didn’t know what was happening, you took charge and brought us across the finish line with a great time. You helped us recover quickly, and were much happier once I ate that cheeseburger.

And I can’t forget being pregnant.

You helped create a beautiful baby.

A 21 inch

9.15 pound

beautiful baby.

You helped keep him safe, and when we were ready for him to come into the world, you made the process so easy.

Afterwards you recovered so well.

It was a hard few weeks, and you were so tired from the last nine months.

When we went on our first run together after Ian, it was so hard.

Our lungs were frozen, and legs were dragging.

But you wanted more and I could tell.

We kept working out.

Slowly but surely.

We were getting back to how we use to be.

Now were busting out eight minute miles and I couldn’t be more proud.

I wish I could tell myself then what I know now.

To appreciate you more, and not be so mad when we eat an entire pint of Ben and Jerry’s.

That it’s nice to treat you to something special every now and then.

That just because you feel fat, doesn’t mean you are fat.

I’m so proud of you.

For everything you’ve helped me through.

For the tough times.

And the great times.

For everything that led me to loving you exactly how you are.

You’re beautiful and I’ve loved watching you get better and better.

I know no matter what comes our way in the future, you’ll be there to help me get through it.

 

A lesson learned.

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Reflect on one of the greatest life lessons you have ever learned?

A lot of the lessons that I’ve learned in life take me back to my younger days.

Don’t skip class by walking out of the front doors of the school.

Look out for crazy drivers on the road.

Study for your test.

I thought those were all just silly lessons you learn when you’re young and by the time you’re in college you would learn all of the serious lessons.

I had no idea that you would go through something at age twelve and again at seventeen..

And twenty..

And twenty three.

That it would keep happening until you finally realized what was going on.

You would realize what you were blind to all those years ago.

That you thought you knew what you were doing but you kept making the same mistakes over and over again until the answer was so obvious it hit you in the face like a brick.

Ok not literally, but the pain was probably similar.

You’re worth more.

I had this idea growing up that stayed with me until I was 23 that I had to find love.

That even though these people were clearly not fully invested in me like I was them, that I could change that.

I blame all of those romantic comedies I watched.

Even though I clearly wasn’t treated right, I was blind to it because I wanted so badly for that relationship to work.

And it didn’t.

They all kept falling apart and I was convinced that I was doing something wrong.

Was I too clingy?

Not clingy enough?

Not good enough?

Not pretty enough?

I just wanted my relationships to work and wasn’t paying attention to what was going on.

That I was worth more than all of those boys combined.

My parents tried to tell me growing up.

Boys are stupid..

And they weren’t wrong.

On one hand I wish I wouldn’t have wasted so much of my time with these people.

But on the other I’m grateful to have had these experiences because without them I wouldn’t have learned the lessons attached to them.

When I was twelve I liked this boy who later told my sister that he liked her more than me. Like a good sister, she ran and told me and I ended it after we confronted him.

But like..what the hell?

I was mad, but instantly thought something was wrong with me.

When I was seventeen I dated a guy who constantly told me I wasn’t good enough and should just quit the things in life that made me happy.

And I believed him.

When I was twenty I thought that I was dating the coolest guy ever. He was my rebound after a really good relationship that ended. Everyone loved him and I thought I was seriously the most amazing person for dating him.

Not that he was amazing for dating me.

But that I was amazing for dating him.

But after him avoiding my calls and text one weekend while he was visiting his ex-girlfriend, I soon realized that once a cheater always a cheater.

Yet I still thought I did something wrong, was I annoying and that’s why he cheated?

And when I thought I finally had it right, when I thought I was done with all of the losers and cheaters in the world, I found another.

I spent a year and a half with someone who felt that everything he wanted out of life was more important than anything I wanted.

That I wasn’t important enough to even compromise with.

I was so upset at first.

Thinking, maybe what I wanted was wrong.

It wasn’t until a while after, when I started loving myself more, that I realized I was worth more.

I deserved more.

I deserved someone who doesn’t compare me to other people.

Someone who is always faithful.

Someone who knows how to compromise when it comes to our different views.

No matter how many times they tell you different.

You’re worth more.

I came across this lesson again.

Someone who I love so much, finally realized that they were worth more than they were getting treated.

And now they’re shinning brighter than ever.

If you ever think there’s something wrong with you.

Look in the mirror.

Realize there’s not.

And start to surround yourself with people who also see nothing wrong with you.

You’ll be amazed at how happy you are and how fast things start to fall into place.

 

My most treasured possession.

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What is your most treasured possession and why?

I was so excited about today’s writing prompt.

I knew instantly what I wanted to write about.

A story that I just love and I hope you will too.

When I was really little there was this ring.

It was a mood ring that was shaped like a pearl, on the most beautiful band.

I had one and my sister had one.

We were told that they were from my grandpa and we weren’t allowed to touch them.

He picked them up for us while driving across the country in his truck.

I remember staring at them in awe in my mom’s jewelry box waiting for the day I could wear it.

I remember thinking that it must have been the most valuable piece of jewelry.

Our parents wouldn’t let us have them because we were so small and it wouldn’t fit our fingers, they also didn’t want us to lose them.

I don’t blame them.

I forgot about the rings as I got older, until the day my grandpa passed away, in November of 2010.

We were at the house later that day and the rings came to mind.

I didn’t have anything from my grandpa, except the ring.

I asked my mom if I could have it and of course she said yes.

I ran to the room with my sister and we each picked ours out.

Of course, as fate was to have it, they fit perfectly.

I hardly ever took that thing off.

They never really changed moods, since they had been locked in a jewelry box for so many years. Mine had this beautiful hue of green, blue, pink and yellow. It’s almost as if it had always been those colors.

Around the pearl shaped stone was this woven design that held it up, along with four little pegs and a silver band.

I had never seen anything like it and received compliments everywhere I went.

Flash forward to February of 2011.

I was in Seattle at our usual Travelodge hotel with my track team from Western Oregon for a meet at the University of Washington.

My friends and I were going to go out to the U Village for dinner and for some reason I decided to leave my ring behind.

I must have taken it off for our afternoon run, because that was usually the only time I would take it off.

The next morning we were packing for the meet and I realized I didn’t have my ring.

I left it on the bedside table the night before and it was gone.

I looked everywhere panicking.

I tore apart my bed along with Janelle’s, looked under them and behind every piece of furniture.

It was gone.

The only thing I had from my grandpa.

Janelle was gone when I realized that I had lost it.

I didn’t tell her.

I didn’t tell anyone.

I was so ashamed and couldn’t handle the thought of telling anyone that I had lost it.

I called the hotel a few times to check and see if they had seen it by chance, nothing.

I was so upset with myself for a while.

Eventually I gave myself a break, and come to the conclusion that I would never see my ring again.

In November of 2012 I was scrolling through Etsy, shopping for rings just because.

No real reason, I just wanted to find a cute ring because it was the trend to wear lots of rings.

Then I saw it.

My ring.

It wasn’t a duplicate.

It wasn’t similar.

It was my ring.

I grabbed my debit card and purchased it for 21 dollars and 95 cents.

Right after I bought it I messaged the shop, asking where they found such a beautiful ring.

The woman’s shop was located in Spokane Washington, just four hours from the location where I lost my ring.

She said it was a vintage mood ring that a woman brought in a few months ago.

I couldn’t believe it.

It had to have been my ring.

Someone had to have found it at the hotel and kept it for some time. They must have sold it to this shop in Spokane.

It was my ring.

Believe it or not but this was my ring.

I told my parents and sister about the ring. How I had lost it a year ago in Seattle and how I found it on Etsy, they couldn’t believe it. They all knew it was the ring.

My ring.

I wore it right away and refused to take it off.

Eventually I did.

It sat right by my bed safe and away from danger.

I had it as I walked down the aisle at my wedding as my something old.

And now, it’s starting to show its age.

The band has cracked at the bottom and I can’t wear it anymore.

I’ve looked into getting it fixed but I’m afraid that something might happen to it and make it worse.

No matter what though, it’s my ring.

My ring that my grandpa gave to me when I was little.

That on the saddest day of my life, fit perfectly when I put it on after so many years of admiring it.

That I lost in Seattle.

And found its way back to me a year later.

I love it dearly and it’s by far my most treasured possession.

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The happiest day of my life.

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Day 2: Reflect on the happiest moment of your life. Tune in how you felt, what you heard, how you looked and what people were saying. Where were you doing, who were you sharing it with, reflect on every detail.

August 1st 2015, the happiest day of my life.

I actually have two, but since I’ve already told the story of Ian being born I decided to go with the second happiest day of my life.

Our wedding.

The day that I got to marry my best friend and celebrate with our family and friends.

I woke up and packed all of the essentials into Janelle’s car, we met up with one of the other bridesmaids, picked up some Dutch Bros and headed out to Corvallis for our hair appointment.

It was so fun just getting to hang out with six of my best friends and get our hair done, most of them I hadn’t seen for a while and I loved getting to spend time with them.

Afterwards we packed up and went out to the venue near Dallas Oregon.

This venue was beautiful.

We arrived around 11 or so, my family worked together with Jason’s family and had everything all set up by the time I got there. I remember just wanting to see Jason so badly, but I had to wait until it was time to take our pictures. Most couples wait until they walk down the aisle to see each other for the first time, but we wanted to take our pictures before the wedding to save time, so we did a “first look” before the ceremony.

I’ll never forget the way he looked at me. I had to keep telling him not to cry because I couldn’t risk messing up my makeup, even though that didn’t stop me from crying.
Taking pictures was so much fun, but my face hurt from smiling so much by the end of it.
The room that I got ready in with the other bridesmaids had these big windows where we got to watch the guests walk in. It was great seeing everyone walk in and love the venue and decorations as much as I did.

We started slightly late, and I just remember everyone was trying to hustle out there to get started. We picked “I can’t help falling in love with you” by Elvis Presley for the bridal party to walk down the aisle too. My grandma loves Elvis, and I used it in a video for my grandparent’s 50th wedding anniversary video so I thought it would be a perfect way to start the ceremony.

Next thing I know I’m listening to the sweet sounds of Brett Eldredge singing “mean to me.” That meant that it was my turn.

My dad leaned towards me and asked to take a selfie, so of course we did.

One of my favorite pictures ever.

I could tell the pastor was wanting us to walk down but I kept telling my dad we had to wait until a certain part in the song, so he let me wait.

I remember walking down so incredibly nervous.

Butterflies in my stomach would be an understatement.
I just held on tight to my dad’s arms as I was about to step into this newjourney with the person I fell in love with just two years before.

The ceremony was beautiful and our pastor did a fantastic job. He kept making jokes about running and made everyone laugh a few times.
I remember being so nervous when we had to say our vows, I was convinced I wouldn’t remember the words I had to repeat back to Jason.

After we were pronounced husband and wife, I got to kiss my husband, and it was as if a huge weight had been lifted off of my shoulders. It was over and everything went perfect and I had a husband.

Not just any husband, the world’s best husband.
He makes me laugh every day, puts up with me, is the best dad to our amazing son, and would do anything for me.

I had everything I had ever wanted.

We walked out of the ceremony to Hall and Oates “You make my dreams come true” because it was pretty accurate for that moment.

Afterwards we had a few minutes to take in what had just happened. Our fantastic DJ got everyone to make their way to the reception side of the venue while Jason and I got freak out about being husband and wife..finally.

The reception was so much fun. Our DJ had everything scheduled, made time for everything we wanted to do, and played the best music. It was one giant party and we loved it.

Jason and I had our first dance to Elton John’s “Your song” because it was the song that played when Jason proposed to me outside of the Fountains at the Bellagio in Vegas.

Next I got to dance with my dad. One of my favorite parts. We kept joking about how it was so awkward having everyone watch us and laughed the entire time.

We had everything that a wedding had.

We cut the cake.

We tossed the bouquet and garter.

There were two great speeches, one by the best man, and one by my best friend.

And a song and dance number.

What..you didn’t have a song and dance number at your wedding?

My sister and brother planned this song and dance (if you can call it dancing) where they played some of the songs that meant the most to us and rewrote the lyrics to be relevant to our day.

I mean it when I say that I had never been so excited and embarrassed at the same time.

I might be biased, but it was the best wedding.

We had so much fun up until the end.

Jason and I had a song.

I didn’t want it to play at any other part of the wedding until the very end.

“Crash my party” by Luke Bryan might not be the most romantic song in the world, but it was our song. Getting to end the best day ever by dancing with my favorite person to our song was by far the best way to end it.

Looking down at my word count right now, I’m at 1031 words, but honestly none of these words can do justice to how beautiful this day was.

If I close my eyes and think about it, I can really remember how happy I was.

 

Get to know me

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Sitting here surrounded by Christmas lights and Christmas music, I’m thinking about what to write next. It’s been hard getting inspired to write during the holidays, and figuring out exactly what I want to write about. So I did what every girl my age does when they’re looking for something, I searched Pinterest. I was so overwhelmed and excited at the same time, so many different writing prompts that I fell in love with and wanted to share. I was definitely nervous looking at some of them though, not thinking I could write about it, or thinking it would be hard to express my feelings on the subject.

That’s when I realized what I wanted to write about..

the things that challenge me..

the things that might be hard to put into words..

the things that excite me..

I came up with this idea to “Blog to 2018.”

There were 19 different writing prompts on this page that I had found, and 20 days until New Year’s Eve. So why not write every day until the New Year? There was one day missing however, so I got to choose my post for the last day of the year.
It will be hard, challenging, and some days it might push me out of my comfort zone.

And that’s so exciting to think about.

This year has been wonderful, and I couldn’t think of a better way to end it then writing every day leading up to the New Year.
My first prompt for this project is an about me post.
Some of my favorite things, random facts, and things that you might already know.

Let’s start with the basics…

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Birthday: February 8th
Middle name: Nicole
Favorite color: Blue
Favorite animal: Monkey
Favorite drink: Coffee, Coffee, and more Coffee
Favorite Food: Mashed Potatoes
Favorite candy: Swedish Fish and Dark Chocolate
Favorite sport to watch: Baseball
Favorite sports team: Dodgers..duh
3 Fears: Spiders, Airplanes, and Heights
Something that makes you angry: People that don’t use their turning signals
Who makes you laugh the most: My brother
Go to karaoke song: Just a friend by Mario
Favorite childhood memory: Christmas morning at my grandparents house
What was your favorite subject in school: Science
Do you collect anything: Coffee mugs
If you had a warning label what would it say: Warning…talks FAST and OFTEN.
What celebrity would you like to meet for coffee: TSwizzle aka Taylor Swift
What did you want to be when you grew up: A lawyer (after watching Legally Blonde) or a Sports Journalist
Nickname growing up: Mega Moose
Favorite Book: The Fault in our Stars
Favorite chore: VACUUMING!
How many tattoos do you have: 5
Favorite Quote: “Have some fire, be unstoppable, be a force of nature.”

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Favorite TV Shows
Grey’s Anatomy
How I Met Your Mother
New Girl
Parks and Recreation
Boy Meets World
Will and Grace
Lost
It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia
Stranger Things
Friends
Pretty Little Liars

Favorite Movies
Step Brothers
How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
500 Days of Summer
Elf
Save the Last Dance
Sixteen Candles
Every Harry Potter Movie
There’s something about Mary
Frozen
Home Alone 2: Lost in New York
Up

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1. I know almost every Taylor Swift song by heart.
2. I have this weird thing with odd numbers..I hate them and I can’t have the TV volume or radio at an odd number.
3. I’ve never broken a bone.
4. I was so terrified of vampires when I was younger that I would sleep with the covers pulled over my neck just in case any were around.
5. I love cleaning. Seriously. It’s my favorite thing to do when I’m bored. Give me a good movie and I can clean and organize ANYTHING.
6. I’m 110% a morning person, I would wake up early over staying up late any day.
7. Don’t play a Drake song around me, unless you want to be amazed by the most spectacular rapping skills of all time…part sarcasm…part fact.
8. I chew on straws whenever I have them. In my coffee, water bottles, anything with a straw I’ll chew on it.
9. I hate hate hate hate black cats. It’s the only superstition I have.
10. My life goal is to go to every Major League Baseball stadium, buy a hat, and watch a game.

To sum this all up, hi I’m Megan. I love watching Netflix, drinking coffee, and rapping uncontrollably to Drake. I challenge you to write down some of your favorite things, seriously, it makes you so happy just thinking about the things that you love. I hope you enjoyed reading my first post of Blog to 2018. Make sure to come back tomorrow to see the writing prompt for the day.

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.