Thursday, March 14, 2013

Tales of Transformation, Trust + Surrender

My bare feet are happily nestled in the grass.  My right foot lays on top of my left and as I look back, the sun is kissing my friendship anklets, but it isn't long before the shadow of my place will blanket my happy toes + I will be reminded that it is still March!  For now, I soak it in, it feels incredible to rest in this glorious weather we are having. It is an amazing 70 degrees out on a lovely Wednesday in Boise, Idaho and I've had a great day of yoga, biking + an invigorating hike through the hills of The Reserve.  One of my closest gal pals, Paige + I gathered our healthy snacks, ginger beverages + her lady-pup Lobo to enjoy our city's beauty at it's spring finest.  We had a decent hike up, breaking a sweat even, before we sat down to treat ourselves to some of our favorite snacks and some long-due catching up.  Though our winter was one of the harshest we've had in years, today has been a beautiful reward for sticking it out through all that I endured the past few months.

This year has a theme thus far:  What will be, will be.  Trust what is and what will be. Be Patient + everything will all work itself out.

I see that a lot of good karma is coming back to me. I'm seeing the benefits of patience as I'm overcoming obstacles and of course, I'm always welcoming new challenges into my life.

Boise Winter 2012/2013

I often skip over the negative when sharing my life in blog and social media form, but in all reality it isn't always the case that life is solely sunshine, rainbows + excitement.  This winter was especially tough for me as a naturally-cold vata, let alone as a year-round commuting cyclist.  There were way too many rides in single-digit weather where no matter what kind of gloves I had protecting my delicate hands, I was sure to feel all stages of frozen digits.  Cold.  Tingly.  Stinging.  Pain.  I often had ice crystals on my eyelashes, eyebrows + sometimes on the surrounding skin on my face.

Adri sick in bed :(
I was sick more than usual, coming down with a really bad bug in the fall + at the peak of the freezing points of January, I came down with a nasty chest congestion that lasted for a couple of weeks.  My pipes froze.  I had no running water for 9 days. I moved out of  my place after paying over $250 per month for heating in my (over-the-winter-discovered) poorly insulated/barely held together bungalow that I was SO excited for + determined to make a home this past fall.  My "slumlord" gypped me $140 out of my deposit for one lousy broken plastic wheel on a perfectly-working space heater (the only thing damaged while doing my walk-through inspection).  My favorite family pet Ralphie, the most handsome miniature collie passed away.  My grandma broke her hip.  You name it, it happened to me this winter!
Filling in the gaps in my very
uninhabitable home.
Through all of my winter hardships, I kept one thing in mind.  A question I was asked when going through previous tough times:  "What am I supposed to learn from this?"

With my "bICE-cycling" situation it has made me appreciate when the weather is in the 30's.  I don't mind rainy rides home, in fact I find them quite reviving.  I'm so grateful that I have the freedom to up + pedal away the majority of the year.  For those ultra-snowy + icy days, I happily hop on the bus + tip taxis generously for what they do.  Thankful!
Cheers to a lovely winter-time nurse,
the ever-so hospitable Megan! I wouldn't
have survived without her words, acts of
kindess and love.  
Anton + his gift of smoothies!
Thankful for his friendship, his
very own journey + his "bomb"
smoothie-making abilities.
I stayed true to myself and got through the same sicknesses passed along from my coworkers and friends at often times a quicker rate with a holistic approach healing myself than they did with western-medicine treatment.  I got through all of it with bone broth, juices, ginger, tea, rest + lovely friends who helped me as I had helped them (yay, good karma)!

My housing situation showed the strength in my friendships and within myself to reach out to those friends.  Often times, my "lioness" leo pride prevents me from asking for help and when offered help, prevents me from accepting it.  I was graciously allowed to stay at two of my dearest lady friend's places. It was a huge relief to not only move forward with my new-found humility but to also say thank you and realize the beauty in the situation.  I moved in with one of those gals and I couldn't be happier to have a special friend who is willing to open her home to me.  I am so very thankful with all of my heart and for the rest of my life for such a welcoming woman and a warm place I now call home.

Money comes and goes, and when you surrender to the universe and trust that what you need - you will have and what you don't is nothing to be worried about.  Hips are fixed, but strength can be built through compassion, empathy + accompanying your lovely wild woman grandmother to her appointments.  All dogs go to heaven as they rest in a place that is meant for them in your heart.  This also allowed me the chance to do something super special for my family.  I tracked down the nearest collie-breeder (Wyoming!) + as a gift put down the deposit for a new future four-legged family member which will be picked up in less than a month on a rest-assured wild woman road trip with that lovely grandmother of mine, Sandra!  Yeehaw!

Love Love Love

A big benefit to a "Real Ice Queen" of a winter was that while I was limited to what I could do physically, I kept my focus and worked extensively with internal issues that I knew I'd face one day.  I've faced many issues with my body + self love.  No matter how healthy I am, what I eat or don't, how underweight or overweight I am, I tend to see my body very negatively.  I have dealt with rather poor body image issues since my preteen years leading myself through a battle a teenage with eating disorders + having battled those, I'm left with an every now and then super self-conscious, very critical voice telling me that I'm not ______ ( skinny, pretty, perfect, fill in the blank, etc. ) enough.

I realized that what has shaped me for years comes from the battle going on from within.  I have adjusted who I am, how loud I am, what I say, how I dress, and how I look for so long to fit in with society and feel "accepted."
My favorite:  hearts!
The funny thing is, over the past few years I've felt myself happier and happier as I stay truer and truer to who I am, the real Adriana, stripped of all expectations + labels.  While bedridden and "snowed in," I knew that this was a great time to focus on these deeply brewing issues.  I began reading many books in the comfort of my very-expensively heated home (yay, baseboard + space heaters being on high!).  Various nutrition-based reads, a solid second encounter with a female-empowering self-help book (my favorite books!), and one of the coolest books I've discovered (thanks to my darling roomie) "Succulent Wild Woman" have helped me start opening up a world of self-love and acceptance, like cracking through the tough, protective shell to get to the bright, delicate, nutritious inside.  These books, along with journaling and chats with my most trusted friends and family gave me the strength to dig deep this winter + put in the work I've needed for a very long time.

Herbs were part of my physical healing.
I've had two major shifts this year and I haven't been happier in my entire life.  They go hand in hand for me + I know that they both happened at the right time.  This was able to become influential and meaningful in my life because I trusted that if it were to play a significant role in my life, I would let it come to me when it should...and it did!

The first is my discovery of Ayurveda, an ancient art of natural healing to become healthy, happy and balanced.  I wasn't looking for this.  I was really clueless to the whole situation + how it came to be, which makes it even more special for me.  I was sick with one of those nasty bugs I got over the winter.  I couldn't nurse myself back to health like I usually do.  I tend to kick illness in 3 days.  I have steps and specific things I eat + drink to heal my sick body to wellness.  After a few weeks I took the advice and took a cancelled appointment with a rather busy Acupuncturist in town.  The funny thing is, I didn't even know she did acupuncture.  I thought she was just an herbalist who was going to give me herbs and send me on my way.  You can imagine my thoughts when I was asked to take my shirt off and lay face-down on the table...! HA!  She walked in, took my pulse and without delay said, "You have a hot spleen, stomach + liver."  I told her a bunch of problems I was having and she told me, "Oh, that's just part of being Vata.  You're Vata with high Pitta."  Again, what?!  I was so confused.  I find out that she's describing my doshas.  There are three doshas, energies based on your body type and personality, used to treat you and your often dosha-specific symptoms.  I'm still learning about all of this, it's just so fascinating!  As I left, with the herbs to treat my hot organs (thank you! ... oh that wasn't a compliment!)  I asked her if there were any dietary guidelines to the whole Ayurveda deal.  She instructed me to check out the Ayurvedic Institute webpage.  I did all of the researching I needed to do to discover the things I need and should avoid based on my dosha.
Ghee = Gold!
To my surprise, my body is happiest when I'm eating the way my dosha is intended to eat. Vata characteristics are based off of wind, the months of November through February, the color blue and cold temperature.  When dealing with dry, windy, cold conditions usually felt through the winter months, Vata becomes imbalanced.  As Vata is with the wind, they are known for having racing thoughts, have cold extremities very difficult to warm up, need to become rooted through schedules and routines.  I could talk about Vata all day, but there is also a little guy called "the internet" if you'd like to find out more or look up your dosha, though I'd recommend that you discover through a pro what your main dosha is.
Ayurvedic Toothpaste
I now shower with Ayurvedic soap, brush my teeth with Ayurvedic toothpaste, make ghee (clarified butter) on a regular basis, practice oil pulling (swishing olive or sunflower oil around in the mouth after brushing and flossing, then spitting it out of course) + continue, for the most part, eating a balanced Ayurvedic-guided diet.  It makes my body happy happy + I intend to keep it that way!

Just like Ayurveda keeps the body happy and in harmony, Yoga balances the mind and consciousness (with amazing toning + strength-building as the cherry on top).  Together they compliment each other nicely, working to one happy, healthy mind, body + soul.  After hearing about it for years and even going to a few sessions here and there I finally found my place in yoga.  After doing a few in-home Sunday morning sessions with my "big sis" gal pal, I found the right teacher, the right studio, the right environment + I even enjoy the other members.  It finally clicked with me.  I ditch my bike and take the time to enjoy nature and really take in the day by walking to the studio anywhere from 2-5 times a week.  I leave smiling almost every time!  I feel completely rejuvenated, ready for the day, filled with so much love and joy.

As my body tells me that my Ayurvedic and Yogic practices are nothing but positive, I listen and I obey.  I surrender to what I know is making me happy, not what society, nor media, nor others say is acceptable or not.  My body isn't the super-restrictive size 2 that I once was.  I cook with full healthy fats without fear.  I satisfy my body.  I traded in my super-straining, compulsive runs for regular yoga sessions, hikes, walks and of course my 5 or so hours of bike riding a week.  I'm active and I have a healthy diet.  My body and mind are doing better than ever.  Why push it?

At the end of the day, I went to my second yoga session.  
We were ending the night in meditation.  It was the first time I truly felt my body as one.  
My legs as one.  My arms as one.  My eyes as one.  My body as one.

"Imagine yourself walking barefoot on a trail."
"Feel the texture."  "Maybe it is sandy or rocky."
"You're on the path when you see a fire in front of you."
"In front of that fire is a person."
"This is a wise person."

I had two tears streaming down my face.
That person, in front of the fire, was myself.
Envisioning myself as the "wise one," is still a shock to me.
I knew this was the breakthrough of self-love + respect I'd been holding within myself.
I finally tapped into it.  It was brought out through this meditation.

I gave myself the gift of light. 
I will be able to guide myself wherever I need to go from here on out with this gift of light.

All you need is love!
One of the most motivational books I've ever read was The Alchemist.  I appreciated the book so much because Santiago - who set out on an intense journey to find treasure, came back to realize the treasure was right where he started, but the journey was key to his discovery.

I feel that I've been looking in all sorts of places for answers, feelings, guidance, love, happiness.
As I have had quite the journey, I've discovered it is within myself, where I started.

Life isn't about what I have, it's about what I've gained.



  1. Very inspiring and beauiful Adri! My best wishes all the way from the 305! <3

    1. Thank you, Nessa! I feel your love + support no matter how far you are, girlfriend! Thank you for your inspiration to continue sharing <3

  2. This brought tears to my eyes and I felt something deep inside of me wanting to reach out. I've searched and searched...I've also stopped because I've always been unsure of what I am seeking for. I know I crave self-acceptance, happiness- a healthy mind and body, and self love... and inner peace. I've always been unsure as to where I even begin. When I lived in Boise, I felt completely lost, judged and lonely....I tried to seek happiness and always seemed to sort of give up, I'd tuck away the fear and just simply go back to wanting to "fit in"- ignoring my needs and true desires. I know moving away was the best thing I could of done for myself (mentally, spiritually, and physically), but I have not done anything to start the healing and searching to become who I've always desires to be. Now and again my inner child seeks for attention and I feel it's louder than ever... I want to be better and love myself for who i truly am. Your blog has inspired me in many ways...thank you for being my friend. If you have any advice, recommendations, or anything please feel free to shoot some love my way.

    1. Jasmine, you are such a sweet bright energy! I felt it when I first met you! Life is really a journey of going from the unknown to discovering what is real + true. We must find ourselves without any outside influences. Often times when we feel those feelings of judgement, loneliness + being lost we blame it on the outside environment, our friends and family, the little situations in a day that we blame our frustrations on.
      I think the problem with that is that these are temporary fixes to our real issues. We must look WITHIN for all answers. Outside influence isn't always true to ourself, but that little gut feeling we have when we know someone isn't treating us right or that your body doesn't agree with what you're doing or feeding it, when stress is too much to take...these are all the messages you need to pay attention to.
      For all answers, look within!
      Who are you? What do you like? Where are you going in life?
      Try things out, break out of your shell, experiment with new ideas, activities, projects, books, food, people!
      Your body will let you know what's right for you and what's not!
      Follow your heart + happiness!
      <3 <3 <3