Girls Gotta Stick Together

I don’t know if you guys get this vibe from me, but I’m definitely one of those girls that’s let the phrase “it’s so hard to get along with girls,” come out of my mouth. You know the type. My best guy friend when I graduated high school was a dude (shoutout to MC).

Don’t get me wrong, I’m dramatic. Like I’m the definition of the word. BUT, I always found it easier to get along with guys than I did girls, again you know the type. Growing up, I was closest in age to all my boy cousins – so I always wanted to fit in with them at family events. I wanted to joke around, like get all gross, and play a really rousing game of kick soccer balls as hard as we could at each other. It was fun at the time.

Lynds, Syd, and I are definitely queens in our own right, but you can see how the cousins are a little male dominated.

In middle school, I had my first super close group of all girl friends. We were all really involved in our sports, some of us were in theater, we had the cheerleader. But most of all, in that phase of our life that everyone was supposed to be like wearing the darkest shades of lipstick they could find to attract all the 6th grade boys – we were much more concerned with having fun in our little group. We went to different high schools, grew into different people, and were never nearly as close as those formative middle school years, but damn if those girls didn’t set the standard for the kind of girls I want in my life.

Keep in mind, again, that I’m dramatic. Okay? We’re all on the same page there? Cool. I was on the girls swim team and in a lot of theater. It was definitely the environment I was in and a terribly depleting self confidence level, but I kind of started to see girls as constant competition. Like, there was always something better about the girls around me. I mean, in swim, it came down to literal times… numbers on a clock. So essentially, everyone that wasn’t in your lane was someone you wanted to touch faster than. For theatre, everyone that auditioned was someone that could get the role or the spot over you. You just had to be better.

I don’t necessarily think that that mindset is isolated to young women. Young men are in constant competition to be the best in those formative years too. Regardless, it’s a fucking exhausting mindset to be in and it’s a truly a never ending race.

It’s hard to unlearn that behavior when you’ve been doing it for so long. But, right now, think of the coolest person that you possibly can. You don’t have to have met them. In your head, you probably imagined someone who’s able to relate and get along with everyone, right? The coolest people around aren’t the one’s that are mean to everyone or constantly at people’s throats. They’re the ones with genuine hearts that shine threw when you desperately need them.

I say this a little bit in a podcast about toxicity in one’s life (which you can find here: You’re not going to get along with everyone. There are going to be coaches, coworkers, and bosses that you really don’t like. Part of growing up and showing maturity, though, is being able to communicate with those people in a civil way. Especially for women. We’re already at odds in the workplace and society – showing respect for everyone is just one way that you can be an ally!

Also, this is not to be confused with the fact that you should just stfu and not speak your truth. Civil disobedience has made some serious changes to this world. There’s a difference, though, between speaking up for your injustices or for the voices that aren’t always heard, and trying to stifle out a voice.

I got the international women’s sign behind my ear as my fourth tattoo because I wanted another tattoo. I wanted something behind my ear. I was feeling like a strong ass woman. Truthfully, I forget that it’s there, but it’s moment when I’m standing up for women, spreading my arms, or giving love to those who need it that I know I made the right decision.

My ex’s ex recently came to me apologizing if she had overstepped for sharing a story about her experience with him. Someone had pointed out similarities and said she was “copying” me. Nah, she just also had the unfortunate chapter that involved the same narcissistic abuser. I’m not the first to feel that way, nor am I going to be the last. Sharing my experience does not mean that hers didn’t happen! It got me thinking about how quick people are to pin women against each other. Online, in person, whatever.

We know that some of the most powerful moments are those that we support one another. A strong woman can change the tides, but a strong woman and her army??? DAMN.

As I’ve grown up, I still find it really easy to get along with guys. Now, however, I have a fierce urge to stand up for, connect with, and love the women around me as well. I have been on this earth for 22 years dealing with just some of the bullshit that women have to go through – having each other as allies just makes this world a better place. So, yeah, that phrase that the nicest person you’ll ever meet is the drunk girl in the bathroom is totally true. What if we didn’t live in a world where alcohol was needed to break down those barriers? What if showing sincere affection and compassion for others was what was ingrained, rather than hypothetical competition? Just food for thought.

Find a crowd that makes you feel good & that cherishes you for being unapologetically you. Ladies, I can promise you that there’s nothing better than walking into the function with some of your best friends, looking great, and knowing that you all have each other’s backs.

Who’s your girl group? Who makes you feel like a badass bitch? I wanna hear about it! Let’s celebrate womanhood!! Slide into my DMs on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook. Or, email me at to chat with me today.

Must Be Funny, In a Rich Man’s World

I don’t have a relationship with money. Even when I have plenty to pay all my bills, save some, and do fun stuff, it never really feels like enough. I read a book once that said that you have stress about things that were surrounded by stress in your formative years.

I knew that I always had food, a warm bed, clothes, and my own bed every single night. I was able to do a lot of things that children around me couldn’t. Being hyperaware, though, has always been a curse as well as a blessing. My parents never talked about money with me. Never told me if they were struggling – on the contrary, my dad always said “you can always make more money” or “we will make it work”. That being said, I don’t come from a long line of royalty or business moguls either. I don’t have a trust fund & the value of a dollar became very apparent very early on.

Literally the cutest family ever. Sullivan did make it cuter I will admit.

My parents worked their asses off to get where they are. Like many in their generation, they don’t have these Masters degrees in their field, but were able work their way up. I spent my childhood watching my parents move up into jobs that valued you them more, paid them better, and that they loved doing. At 14, I wanted to be able to *kind of* provide for myself. I got a job in childcare at our church. My first paycheck I became obsessed with the idea of saving, not having enough, and having more.

Some of my friends never had to, and still don’t really have to, worry about a job. They have a credit card linked to their dad’s personal checking account for when times get too tough… and if that’s you, God bless you, dude. Good for your parents. Good for whoever made the fortune for the family – you and I just live very different lives.

At 14, I started to get worried about saving for college. 14 years old. I mean, I had to go to school and I could only work X amount of hours in a week. The thought of my parents paying my way made me sick to my stomach. Again, if your parents had that ability or that was your family’s plan, more fucking power to you. It just makes me REALLY uncomfortable. In my head, my parents are supposed to make sure I have food, shelter, and love. Even that, is more than some people have. I didn’t want or need them to pay for school… I could do that myself.

Let’s not get it twisted; my parents did put their credit on the line to co-sign on a lot of bullshit for me. Especially these student loans, so again, couldn’t have done it without them. After 4.5 years, I was happy to receive my diploma on my own merit, payments that I had made, and debt I had taken on myself.

My parent’s graduation gift to me was paying off a couple private loans. That gift cuts one of my monthly payments in half and takes care of thousands of dollars of school debt. I didn’t feel like I could accept it, even if it was a gift. It was their money – money that they could use to take trips, buy something lavish, or just save.

As I’m writing this, I’m thinking about rent, utilities, my car payment, loans, credit card, and just the price of being alive. There are huge steps I need to take in learning better ways to save money. I need to take better advantage of my monthly budget. God knows, I need to cool it on eating out so much. BUT, the first step of making money and having a good relationship with it has been instilled in me since I was a kid – work your ass off.

Spending someone else’s money is fun and exciting, but earning your own and supporting yourself is soooo empowering. So, if you find yourself spending a lot of money on things that seem temporary, I would challenge you with the question: Do I value one dollar? Do I value my time as a means of making money? Am I spending money to cope with something else? Odds are, one or more of those questions will lead you to some pretty vulnerable realizations about your relationship with money.

I actually really like current my job. I work with my best friends and I’m good at what I do. PLUS, sometimes we get to meet sweet baby angels like these puppies. But, I don’t see myself doing this forever.

I still struggle with moments of stress when it comes to money. I question the path of content creation I’ve chosen and whether it will be as fruitful and successful as I imagine my later life to be. And sure, I could join a corporate office that draws on my majors and make a salary and have a lot less unknown. I made a decision, though, that I would rather be happy, doing what I love, and living a somewhat more restrictive life in terms of finances than working in an office, feeling stale and unhappy, but having extra money in my bank account.

I’m recently listening to the RISE podcast with Rachel Hollis who is a multimillion dollar business owner with just a high school degree. She’s the author of books like “Girl, Wash Your Face” that have become all the rage in today’s younger success-hungry demographic. I listen and actually TAKE NOTES on her words, because her path is something I’m striving for. She always says “there are a LOT of ways to make money and pay your bills.” Which is so true! Money is circling around every industry, every career, and is waiting to be given to driven, motivated people. So, even if the moments now are stressful, I have to remember the end goal is getting paid for doing what you LOVE rather than settling for what you like.

Money is stressful. It’s a huge part of everyone’s mental health. But, you can always make it.. you WILL figure it out, and regardless of what your bank account looks like, you’re worthy of happiness, relaxation, and serenity. This is just as much a reminder for me as it is for all of you.

Purpose from Pain

For a long time, I’ve felt like the victim in my own life. I’ve constantly questioned why the Universe, or God, or whatever the hell is up there calling the shots. I’m a good person, good friend, and I was a really good girlfriend. So, why was I being tested?

Honestly, this mindset is just exhausting though. Constantly questioning the energy that surrounds you and feeling like a victim is just draining. I was definitely ready to stop feeling this way, to let go of the past, and to finally move on.

I’ve always been interested in mental health advocacy and restructuring of thoughts. I’ve been in therapy since I was 16. I’ve read all the books, done all the guided meditation, and done so many journal entries my hands eternally hurt. A few weeks back, I came across an amazing podcast (Align Your Life with Namaste Jenay – seriously, check it out!) that changed a lot about my life. It was divine timing, for sure – hearing about how to approach my lasting pain and understanding how to move forward.

Faces blurred for HIS privacy. You can see that we had that cute, Insta-worthy love. No disrespect… but this one is finally about me, not him.

To understand my purpose, you’ve gotta understand the pain. My ex, let’s call him Tommy, and I started dating at the ripe age of 17. We had dated before, been friends through all those gross acne-filled years, and been through a lot. Even five years later, I can honestly say that I loved that kid with all of my heart. Every fiber of my being that could feel love, did.

I don’t want to discredit him. He worshiped the ground that I walked on, let me be the drama queen I crave to be, and never really argued with me when I got worked up.

Red flags definitely presented themselves, but I loved him too much to see them. I didn’t believe the girls that told me things that should have had me running for the hills. Three years later, our breakup had the ability to be civil, but it wasn’t. After three years, we came to the conclusion that something felt different over text. I moved all of my stuff out of our apartment in an hour… even taking the shower curtain as a middle finger to the dude I thought I would spend my life with.

It wasn’t the breakup that hurt though. Yes, it was shitty. Yes, I cried a lot and felt pain, but it was a temporary, easy to heal pain. The pain came after – days, months, and even years after. The pain came when he was promising that he was coming back, only to be consistently hooking up with girls I was told not to worry about. The pain came from crying on the bathroom floor begging him for closure, only to be ignored. The pain came from being used for attention while three girls were in his back pocket. It came from being driven to the clinic and hearing “I have class at 1, so this better be done by then” as if my mental, physical, and emotional was a chore for him. My pain was centered around trying to articulate what my tears were from, only for him to threaten to hurt himself and result in me needing to apologize. My pain came from him throwing the irrationally thoughts I had hyperventilated in my panic attacks right back in my face, as if him speaking them made them fact. My pain was from finally finding my voice only to be called every name by someone I still loved with all my heart.

I was abused. It took me a long time to come to terms with that and say it out loud. I was allowed to feel like the victim without feeling guilty. Sure, there were moments when I was toxic, let’s not glass over that. There were also things that I said that were not okay; that I wish I could take back.

Life has a funny way of rewarding you or continuing to kick based on whether you learn the lesson or not. The emotional scars he left on me will change how I approach relationships forever. At least now I know that this pain, was the Universe’s purpose. My purpose.

I was forcing myself to laugh here. I left that wedding early to cry in the shower – despite having all of my absolute favorite people around me. I had let my pain run wild – picking up food, packing on the pounds, desperately calling him on the off chance he had something positive to say, and losing all hope on life.

My purpose

When Namaste Jenay first started talking about purpose from pain, I thought “fuck that, there’s some pain that is just unfair and too bad to have a purpose”. I mean, there are still therapy sessions when all I can do is cry at how messed up I feel. There are still times when all I want to do is check up on him. There’s still times when I get jealous of the new girl that I know he’s cheating on. So, shouldn’t all of my purpose be negative? That’s the thing that changed my life… the purpose of my pain is all positive lessons from the Universe.

Your toughest obstacle is your biggest teacher.

— Namaste Jenay

Let’s get one thing straight. You’re body is MADE to fight pain. All types of pain. When you roll an ankle, the other muscles step up to overcompensate. When you have strep throat, cells in your body are made just to kick all those nasty virus asses. Same thing for emotional pain. All your brain and heart want to do is heal, but you won’t do that until you accept the pain and find it’s purpose.

In sending me Tommy, the Universe was trying to teach me a lesson about life and love. A lesson that I clearly wasn’t ready to listen to as I took him back for the millionth time. Today, I can finally say that I’m ready for the lessons that the Universe intended for me to learn in this pain. Also today, the Universe can finally say that it believes me!

Thanks Evan MacDougall with e.mac Photography for these pictures that genuinely show the healing. I’ve lost the weight, turned to family, and found the healthiest coping mechanisms for the bad days.

I’ve bare minimum standards for myself. For so long, I let him come back in no matter what he did. The standards that I thought I had got lost in a desperation of getting him to stay. Now, I can say with 100% certainty that I will never stay with someone when trust doesn’t exist. I will never beg someone to hear me, listen to me, or care. No, it’s not healthy to project my issues onto the next man that enters my life. But, I’m never going to be a “You cheated, let’s work it out” girlfriend again. Never. I will never believe that someone who says they love me can continue to hurt me.

I have the power to help other women. With all the bullshit I went through, I was under the assertion that no one could ever go through what I did. That was my own ego getting in the way. It was a lesson that I refused to learn. Not only are there other women who went through similar pain at the hands of Tommy, but there are millions of people who are in emotionally manipulative relationships. There are millions of people whose standards have been blinded by the intense love for one person. So, if the Universe needed me to feel pain and learn lessons so that I can shed light for someone else, it was worth it. If I can be an advocate for one’s voice, even when it’s been silenced, THAT is my purpose.

Even in the absolute best part of my relationship, Tommy didn’t make me as happy as I’m making myself right now.

I needed to find my own strength. Sure, in 2017 I thought I was the baddest bitch on the street. I was in a relationship with a cute boy and for all intents and purposes, I was really strong. But, I wasn’t strong enough for LIFE. Going through my first breakup, I genuinely thought that death would have been easier. (Yes, I’m aware how dramatic that sounds.) But, I had let a guy complete me for so long, I didn’t really know how to be strong. Now, I see girls going through what I did. All their friends want to do is shake them and tell them to step away, but babe, it’s okay if you don’t see that strength there. It exists. It’s there, it just takes time to tap into. The Universe needed me to learn strength. It needed me to learn that the strength I had wasn’t gone forever as a result of him, it was just hidden until I was ready to find it. And now, let me tell you. I feel so strong. Taking the lesson, running with it, and acting upon it has made me so so so strong – physically, mentally, and emotionally.

Life challenged me. For years, I wasn’t ready to find the purpose, see the red flags, or learn the lesson. So, every time he came back in, I welcomed him with open arms; signalling to the Universe that I hadn’t learned last time. My body wanted to heal. My coping mechanisms were in place to guide me to purpose, but I had to let them. I know it’s much easier said than done. But everyday, I had to get up and say “I’m going to heal a little bit more today. I deserve to let my body find the peace that it deserves.” I promise that it will feel like speaking to a brick wall at first. Someday, though, you’ll start to believe an itty bitty part of it. It’s time, my love. Right now. Today.

Today, I struggle with an ability to connect and trust. It’s been easy to blame that on him. But, for the first time, it’s NOT FUCKING ABOUT HIM. This is about growth in me. Fears that I personally have that will hold me back until I face them. But the lessons, they’re there. On bad days when I seem to be reverting to whatever form allowed so much pain in my life, the purpose is ingrained enough to stop me. To save me.

Tommy is dating a new girl now. For a long time, I found it my duty to let these girls know my story to warn them about him. Now, I know, that my purpose is to share my strength, empowerment, and support as living and breathing proof that you CAN get through it. It’s not my job to air his grievances or make sure he doesn’t hurt people. It’s my job to leave him in the past, leave that abuse and pain in the past, and show that though the journey is long, it’s so so so worth it.

There I am, in all my glory. So, this one’s for you, EmyD! Are YOU ready to let your body, mind, and soul heal with me?

Connect with me on any social media platforms below! I want to hear YOUR mental health story!