Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Sometimes I think, all the time I'm human

Sometimes I think that people are ridiculous,  but then I remember that I can be ridiculous too.

Sometimes I think people are inconsiderate, but then I remember that I can be inconsiderate too.

Sometimes I think that people are unreasonable,  but then I remember that I can be unreasonable too.

Sometimes I think that people are selfish,  but then I remember that I can be selfish too.

Sometimes I think that people are lazy,  but then I remember that I can be lazy too.

Sometimes I think that people are ignorant,  but then I remember that I can be ignorant too.

Sometimes I think that people are careless,  but then I remember that I can be careless too.

Sometimes I think that people are hypocrites,  but then I remember that I can be a hypocrite too.

Then I view them with compassion instead of judgment because I remember that I'm only human too.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Beauty at Any Size

There are a lot of ad campaigns and Internet GIF's with regards to women,  beauty and size. While these are meant to promote body confidence,  they're straddling a fine line between promoting self love and advocating unhealthy bodies.

Let me start by saying true beauty is about much more than what's on the outside.  Much like the old adage,  'you can't judge a book by its cover, ' it's about content,  aka what's on the inside. So whether or not you're truly beautiful is completely within your control as you decide the person you want to be. 

These ad campaigns and GIF's are not talking about true beauty,  it's clearly referring to superficial beauty. Superficial beauty is what's on the outside and we all know some of the prettiest packages are filled with vile dog shit. What we're really talking about here is being attractive.  Whether or not you're attractive is in the eye of the beholder. The only time you have control of that is when you're looking in a mirror.

That being said,  there's a BIG difference between saying women are beautiful at any size and saying women are healthy at any size.

While I do feel it's important for women to love themselves as they are,  I also feel it's important that women love themselves enough to take care of their body.  A part of truly loving yourself is being honest about where you're at in life and making improvements as necessary.

If we're telling women they're beautiful at any size are we not saying it's ok to be obese or to be cachectic? Obesity is the cause of numerous diseases and deaths, such as,  cancer,  stroke,  fatty liver disease,   cardiovascular diseases and type 2 diabetes.  All of these diseases and deaths could be controlled or prevented with a healthy lifestyle.

I'm not saying skinny is the only beautiful nor am I saying that obese women aren't beautiful.  What I'm saying is let's promote health.  Let's not promote complacency. Let's remove judgement from the entire conversation. Let's promote honest self love that pushes women to put themselves and their health first.  Let's be done with the old standard of women doing everything for others and nothing for themselves.  It's about bettering our health to better our lives.


So let's recap.  True beauty comes from within,  so yes ladies,  you can be beautiful at any size.  Superficial beauty is bullshit.  Obesity,  anorexia, bulimia,  exercise addiction,  or any other extreme on either side is unattractive. Confidence,  self love and healthy lifestyles are not only beautiful,  they're down right sexy!


Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Live Now

The thing about life is that we're constantly told what "should" be. We're supplied these preconceived notions of how things are supposed to be via our caregivers, tv, media, and other societal influences.  Somewhere along the line we even create these subconscious directives for ourselves.  What we often don't realize is that when we're experiencing anxiety,  depression, frustration,  anger and so on,  it is due to this vision that we hold onto about how things "should" be.

Living presently simply means accepting our life for the reality of what it is right now, as it's happening and for what it truly is.  It's responding to this life consciously. It's being mentally present to what is occurring at this very moment. All responses are conscious, not out of habit or unconscious behaviors.  It's really a matter of accepting what's going on and letting go of any preconceived notion of what we think should be going on. In other words, it's living without expectation and responding to what comes your way with thoughtfulness not reacting on impulse.

In our fast past world concious living takes consistent practice. It's a matter of making a commitment to the practice and finding one's own personal balance.  As with anything in life it's about prioritizing. Being able to live conciously requires slowing down, taking a step back from the traditional grind and soul searching for what's really important to you. We tend to rush through our days,  rush through our tasks,  completely missing the truth around us. Our society puts a lot of pressure on us to go, go, go,  but this mindset,  this lifestyle, is a cycle of habits and rituals without feeling,  without experiencing,  without living.

Contrary to popular belief, we're not here to accumulate things. We're here to accumulate knowledge,  to spread that knowledge and love. To grow as individuals and to grow as a species not into technological and financial evolution, but into concious evolution. We aren't here to rely on computers to do the thinking for us. We're here to download the higher conciousness ourselves. We're not here to live in creature comforts,  but to align ourselves with nature. We're not here to horde excess,  but to simply have enough.  We have to find a way to balance these things as a whole. We do this by starting with ourselves. We do this by practicing living in the now, living conciously.

Steps towards living conciously might include:

* Slowing down, both figuratively and literally. When we're rushing from one thing to the next we tend to respond via impulse. If we slow down,  drive the speed limit,  declutter and remove some things from our calendars, focus on the task at hand vs multitasking,  etc, we are able to experience what we are doing and respond to external stimuli vs reacting.

* Taking time to think before responding to ensure we aren't acting on impulse. This is especially key in trigger areas that tend to produce anger. If we take the time to think it through, we won't respond in ways we may later regret.

* Observing without judging, labeling or attaching any preconceived notions via comparison. Realize that everyone is on their own journey, one we know nothing about. Just simply SEE what is occurring and only take in the facts we can discern for ourselves. This one is much easier said than done as our preconceived notions are heavy when we're interpreting the world around us, but with consistent practice it's achievable.

* Experiencing life from a place of compassion. When we do this we are able to bring kindness into the world and avoid unnecessary drama and hurt for ourselves. We cannot take what others do personally. We've all made mistakes, lessons from the human experience, let's give others the compassion we'd like to receive on our worst days.

* Making ourselves a priority. The practice of living conciously takes a lot of energy, especially in the world we live in today. We must make time to rebalance ourselves on a regular basis. We all find our centers differently and that's okay, as long as we're making it a priority.

* Accepting that everything that has occurred in our lives, everything as it is right now, is a direct or indirect result of the choices we've made. Take ownership of where you stand, realize your own power and once accepted realize you have the power to make a different choice.

There are many strategies toward living conciously. No one way is the right way as we all must do what works for us and our reality. Above all we must remember that we can do anything we put our minds to,  for "he who controls the mind, controls his world."

*love & light*

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Elevated Bliss

Is it possible to be in awe of your own life? That is how I've been feeling lately.  I've been thoroughly rewarded for my efforts to be a better person, for my belief in positive energy flow and for my faith in the universe. I've changed so much in such a short span of time, but then again, I'm always changing. I forgave to heal. I let go to move forward. I gave without expectation. I simplified and I delve further into developing my understanding of universal energy, life and how to live positively.

It's soo easy to over complicate life by over thinking, by reading into things, but by simply taking things as they are, as they are shown to you, life is much easier. Accepting not only that you are only in control of yourself, but also that what others do has nothing to do with you, creates peace. Living in and focusing on the present, being present in the now, releases depression and anxiety. Enjoy what you are being given right now. Consistently think positive thoughts and practice gratefulness to continue receiving good things. AND, have faith that any trials that come your way are for the greater good.

My life is very surreal right now and I am extremely grateful. My children are growing and learning, developing and becoming wonderful lil' people. I'm proud of them and of my efforts to continually improve my parenting skills. I'm part of the healthiest relationship I've ever had with a complimentary man that is everything I could ever want. I'm incredibly lucky to have the perfect partner for me. I have family, great friends, my health and steady income. There's nothing lacking.  There's an ever present desire to learn, grow, love and, not only be happy, but hopefully spread that happiness to others.

I don't write this to be smug.  I make mistakes.  Some days are easier than others to follow the path of positivity and gratefulness.  I do my best daily, learn from my mistakes and work to do better the next day.  I can always improve and will always strive to.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Hopefully Romantic




Nothing to hide, no games to play

Just open up, discuss and learn

Share and grow, build that foundation

Similar views, differing views, experiences to share

Is there something there? Do you feel it?

Let's not label it, no box to be placed in

Just live, learn, laugh

No expectations, pure enjoyment

Be in the moment, the now of what's happening

Learn the past, build the future, the present is a gift, enjoy


The loyal friend, the faithful lover and the trusted confidant

The ear to listen, the shoulder to cry on and the aide in getting back up

The sharer of laughs, the cheerleader of triumphs and the equal developer of dreams

The rock for the weakened, the increased strength thru the trials and the ever present when needed

The provider of safe self expression, true acceptance and constant support

The unconditional lover, the open communicator and the confidence builder

The unwavering team mate, traveling hand-in-hand throughout the journey of life



I urge you, lovers
to openly communicate
without fear of reaction
with trust in your partner
and in what you've built

I urge you, lovers
to share selflessly
not in possessions but in thoughts and feelings
for secrets kept create divides

I urge you, lovers
to encourage each other everyday
to never put conditions on your love
and to give it freely without expectation

I urge you, lovers
to look within each other and truly see
to not only see, but accept
to not only accept, but admire

I urge you, lovers
to renew your love
to keep your fires lit
to enjoy each other
outside of everyday life

I urge you, lovers
to admire what you've built
to appreciate your life team's handiwork
and to never take it for granted

Thursday, October 13, 2011


I've always been of the mindset that you only have one life, so live it to your fullest enjoyment.  Furthermore, I believe that anyone can accomplish anything they set their mind to as long as they are willing to put in the work.  I have a lot of people that come to me for advice, which I'm happy to give, but I really feel like its as simple as the diagram below.

The diagram seems pretty self explanatory, but we as people in today's peer pressured, guilt tripped, haterade society, we sometimes have issues seeing "the forest thru the trees," towards making actual, positive change in our lives. 

So, here's my attempt at trying to break the process of positive change down into manageable, eye opening steps.  I hope any of you looking for some positive change find it helpful.

Before you start, remember that this exercise is for YOU.  Be completely honest with yourself when answering these questions.  Focus on you and your desires without letting how you think other's will react or feel about your thoughts get in the way.  Don't get ahead of the process by worrying about the next step or trying to figure everything out, just answer the specific questions one at a time.  Allow yourself to green light brainstorm, sky's the limit! 

This is a step purely to build confidence for the mentally taxing steps ahead.  What do you have in your life that you enjoy?  That you can be proud of?  That makes you happy, confident or unique?

For #2 thru #5 - Make a table w/four columns labeled CHANGE (#2), OBSTACLE(#3), OVERCOME (#4) & PLAN (#5).  The number of rows depends on how many answers you come up with in #2.

What do you think that, if it were different, you'd be happier?  Remember, don't hold back!! 

There is very little in life that you can't accomplish if you're willing to put in the work, so be honest about what's truly keeping you from making your life as happy as possible.

Really think "outside the box" on how you can move forward with these changes you desire.
"So often we live our lives in chains, never knowing we have the key." ~ Don Henley


You've already built the framework for your plan by answering the previous questions, now you need to strengthen the framework by developing a solid plan. 
For example, maybe it was your finances that were in your way, now you must develop a savings plan.  Maybe it was other people's attitudes holding you back, setup a plan for how you are going to communicate to the person(s) and how you will move forward with or without their support. 

You can make any change you want to make, you just have to lay the framework, develop a solid plan and then FOLLOW THRU!!!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Gwen's Exodus: The Time Has Come!

To talk of OTHER things.......

Since mid 2007 the talk has been of derby, derby, derby.......

.....with it having an ever increasing presence in my life. 

I learned about roller derby and it's comeback from watching the A&E "reality" show, Rollergirls.  Then I learned that we had roller derby in Phoenix via the events listing on  And then, drum roll please, I saw the TRYOUTS flier in the program!!!

I fell in love with watching a sport.  Then being a fan of an AZ league.  And, ultimately, playing the sport myself, helping to run a league/team and being a part of an ever growing community of people all intertwined due to their love of this unique sport.

I've been part of a league that had a very grass roots beginning with a punk rock, "we just wanna have fun," mindset.  The league has since grown to a highly respected organization that puts on professional bouts with competitive and athletic members.  It's been an amazing adventure and I'm sooo lucky and proud to have been a part of it!  I've had roles in management, event planning, bout production, co captaining a team, etc.  It definitely takes a village and any hand is a helping one!

The time commitment related to roller derby is no joke.  There are practices, events, meetings, games, track builds, fundraisers, photo shoots, team dinners, and more!  These all require time away from kids, work, family, nonderby friends and nonderby events.  And as a league grows, so does the time commitment.

Being a half time, single mom (the ex and I have joint custody) trying to keep up with the time commitment and the increasingly competitive nature of the sport, has been extremely taxing, to say the least.  I'm constantly trying to balance the two most important things in my life (kids & derby).  In the end, it leaves me feeling as though neither is getting my full 100%.  

I've come to the conclusion that as the sport excels and becomes more and more competitive, there's no longer a place for skaters like me.  I don't mean this in a harsh way.  I'm soo happy to see the sport excell and get international recognition.  It's what we've been working towards!  I'd say though, that with my time commitment issues, I'm more of a "hobby level skater."  I'm not in this to live, eat, sleep and breathe roller derby.  There are plenty of girls that do and I have sooo much respect for them, to the point where I'm in awe of their commitment level.  It's just not something I literally can do, nor would I probably want to do.  I'm more of a jack of all trades gal.  I like to have my hands in many things at once.  I like to do different activities throughout my week.  To each her own, right? 

Also, derby can be an emotional roller coaster at times. 

You are not only dealing with 100 plus women, you are dealing with passionate people who all care very much about the sport, the league and it's business.  Don't get me wrong, my league has done a great job of becoming a well oiled machine that normally works out issues in a fair and respectful way, but the strain of the situations is still there and there are other smaller things that happen at the skater and/or team level.  Plus, we are a huge family, a community even, there are lots of interpersonal relationships that have their own ups and downs only related to derby by proxy.

Season 6, my fifth season, has been the most tumultuous season of roller derby that I've experienced.

Derby is like motherhood, extremely hard work that is uber rewarding and something that you can love even when it pisses you off! Lol.

I don't intend to go into detail, sorry to disappoint any gossip lovers.  Let's just say, I've had some heartbreaking situations within the past year, related to derby, but I've made my personal peace with those situations.  I'm not one to hold a grudge and I'm extremely forgiving of people due to the fact that I understand that not everyone sees the world the same way and that can cause resentment, confusion, jealousy, miscommunication, etc. 

On the other hand, the ups have been so amazing that I'm not sure that they could be beat!!!  Things have happened this season that will stay with me for the rest of my life!!!  And I thank everyone who had a hand in those moments!! 

I hate to call it leave or quit or any of those potentially negative terms.  I will always be a fan of roller derby.  I will always love my league and my league mates.  The friends I've made in derby will last a lifetime.  I just don't see a place for me on the track at this time.