So today is my birthday. My 30th Birthday to be exact. And I would like to say I will miss my 20’s but I am quite relieved they are over. I learned a lot over this decade, with heartbreak, loss of friends and family, divorce, bankruptcy, losing myself, rebuilding, creating art, and making a business. My 20’s have not been an easy go but it has built the foundation of finding out who I am and who I want to become. A lot of my skeletons, have long since wasted away, and no longer chain me to that closet door. I have really came to understand the beauty of growing up. Not only do you bloom in to the person you are meant to be but you are challenged to truly appreciate that growth.
I used to live in regrets, anger, and sadness. Now a-days, I feel fulfilled, loved, and grateful. If it wasn’t for all the pain, I don’t think I would truly be thankful for the happy moments. I realize even with all the hurt, and sadness, that it doesn’t make me a person unworthy of love. But I also understand that I cannot have love without giving love to myself. I spent last year, taking care of others and their happiness on my birthday, which was gratifying but it didn’t help me take better care of myself. So this year, I decided to challenge myself. And do the things that scared me. I decided to spend 30 days till my 30th doing things for the person I spend most of my days with. ME.
Self-care is very vital key to happiness and so many people, get in a funk thinking how selfish blah blah blah. But look at this have you ever met a person who is truly living their best life and not taking care of themselves? No? Didn’t think so. In order to properly love and care for others you must first take care of yourself.
So let me take you on this journey of self discovery.
My 1st day.
I need a vacation: I travel a lot but it’s always for work. Or I end up in front of a computer editing the whole damn time. I needed a break from electronics, the social media ladder, and plugging in to the matrix.
So I scheduled a mid-week break. I took my pups and my Friend Nichole to Asheville,NC to a litte airbnb tiny house perched up on a mountain. No cell service, cooked in the tiny kitchen, watched the sun-rise with Leo, hiked with the pups, it was a well needed detox and it made me realize how much of our society runs on internet validation. I am super guilty of it. But it was nice to be in moment for the actual moment and not for the likes I’ll receive on the picture later.
My 2nd day.
I haven’t been feeling very good about my body lately I have had health issues and the stress of running a business also puts a strain on you, so I wanted to get in touch with how beautiful I am, so I scheduled a photoshoot with one of my favorite photographers Marie Killen. She was down in Greensboro so I trekked it on down, to check her out and we had a blast! And the pictures look killer, I was like DAMN I look better at 30 than I did at 20.
I work 24/7 being self employed, I always feel guilty hanging with friends when I have work to get done. So I made an effort to make time in my schedule to ACTUALLY hang with friends instead of stating “I’m busy”. It was nice went to concert with my girl Liz, went to see Arctic Monkeys with my QOTSA crew buddies, went to a couple friends house for hang sessions, visited my little nieces in Hampton, had breakfast with the Godfrey’s, and it was great. I think as adults we forget what it feels like to actually have down time and kinda lose ourselves in work and paying bills, but MAKE TIME for your FRIENDS. Even if it’s just an hour lunch! PUT THAT PHONE DOWN. Look at them, catch up on life, it’s awesome to be able to share that real connection, don’t take it for granted.
My friend Joey McIntosh is a badass illustrator and Artist. I commissioned him to draw Me and my pups, as Peresphone and Cerebrus, and it is awesome. It will be tattooed on my body one day lol.
I have been having health issues, and trouble keeping a normal weight, my weight fluctuates about 30-60lbs yearly. Which isn’t good, so I decided to try and research some healthy options to get my weight under control and take back control of my body.
So I started a program with Renew health and wellness. To help get my weight and metabolism in order.
I also started an awesome workout regimen with Dave Robinson of Get Strapped! He has this awesome app, for accountability, and does weekly group workouts in beautiful places around Richmond.
I also have been more embracing my sexy since it is what I do for a living 😉 So I started taking pole classes at Butter and Filth. Let me tell you, Nia and Heather are AMAZING, and they welcome everyone and help you find that inner sexy bitch. I highly recommend them!
I also did a cupping Session with Miss Alyssa at Mint Day Spa Boutique. Get that blood flowing!
Today. I am opening pre-orders for MY FIRST BOOK. YES, I am publishing a book. It is a poetry and photography project I have been working on for 5 years. I started it in 2011 and now it is finished. We had a successful show for it in January and now I am bringing for everyone to see! RVA Mag did an awesome write up on the show you can read about it here.
And if you would like to pre-order the book click here.
So in turn doing all these things for myself, did it stop me from getting work done? NOPE. Did it make people hate me? NOPE. Did it create chaos and upset the balance of power? NOPE (Mercury in Retrograde does that lol)
So why aren’t you doing more for you? NO excuse do it. Don’t put it off another day, this is YOUR LIFE, start living it and you will start loving it.
Now I am going to get back to work! <3 Love you guys! Thanks for being on this crazy ride with me!
30 here I come.
-Ash Mari whatever my name is lol