It's been awhile since my last blog post and for that I do not apologize. Life has been busy throwing me curveballs and showing me that I'm more resilient than I thought I was. There was the final end of a relationship and the not so fun months of heartbreak that followed, the seemingly never-ending financial struggles, the professional uncertainties and majorly missing my east coast friends. It's been an introspective time that left me asking myself more than once just what I'd done in moving here.
But then a funny thing happened: a light started to emerge at the end of the tunnel. About the time we started coming out of the apocalyptic rainy season, I started to come out of my own one (there is most certainly a correlation there, I'm sure). Almost as if a switch had flipped, I just decided I was tired of being sad about my ex and literally snapped out of it. My financial woes did not go away but became more manageable and slightly less stressful, my job at Nike started to take better shape and I finally felt like I was beginning to wrap my head around the complex nature of the company, and my best friends from Boston came to visit me making me feel better than I had in ages. (That's the thing about true friends, they will make the effort to go see you and bestow so much love that your heart aches with joy.)
While in New York I'd felt drawn to Portland and continued to have faith that whatever the reason was that I'd changed my life and moved here would reveal itself in time. One thing I did know was that I'd moved here for a lifestyle change and for the peace and quiet to write with far fewer distractions that the city allowed. Beyond that, I was struggling with understanding why I was really here. Then it slowly dawned on me that here I had morphed into the person I wanted to be but had struggled to be in New York: a model, makeup artist, writer and person who works at a top global consumer brand with a lifestyle I could never have in New York. No one said this transformation of mine would be easy or without its financial hurdles, but I have become who I wanted to become. In New York I'd go on the occasional casting where every girl would look like me, thereby increasing the already steep competition, but here I'm usually the only "one" of my type, which makes me stand out more. I have gained more confidence here as a makeup artist, and my writing has gotten noticed as I've recently landed a freelance copywriting job for an Italian skin care company (thanks to a good friend in NYC). And, remarkably, unlike New York where I, along with the rest of the city, commuted to work by subway, here I live so close to campus (Nike) that I often walk or ride my bike. You just can't beat a 10-15 minute door-to-door commute to work by feet or wheels while enjoying the lush beauty of this place.
The writing piece is key because my belief that sticking to my love of all things beauty and skin care would somehow come to pass in a tangible way is doing just that. All the hustling I did in New York for years (covering events, doing press, writing about different brands) outside of my corporate finance job, which supported my creative hustle, has manifested itself here in Portland of all places. New York is the center of the world in most every industry, but having secured my new writing gig far away from New York proves that the world is bigger than that city and you can actually do what you want to do anywhere else with the added benefit of a holistic healthy lifestyle. Ironically, the brand I'll be writing for is holistic in nature and lifestyle and sustainability are core to it, and as those are principles that I adhere to [more now] that I'm in Portland, and the fact that I work in sustainability at Nike, makes it the perfect fit.
Doing what you love is often a bumpy years-long road with an unforeseeable path. It forces you to rely on your gut and have blind faith that things will work out at some point. But know that listening to yourself is the only compass you need to make the right decisions for you and you alone. Trust your instincts and listen. When your many sacrifices start to pay off and things begin to fall into place—and they will if you stick with it—that will be all the validation that you need to know you are own the right path to creating the life that you want.
This is all to say that I'm feeling more at peace about being in Portland and my purpose is revealing itself more by the day. (And keeping time with a special someone new isn't hurting either. Mmmhmm.)
Keep the faith, live in the moment, treasure your friends, be open and don't be afraid of change. You never know what lies ahead for you.
Yours in faith,