mrtstart2

youtube

we have been home from israel for days and i am still unable to put the experience into proper words.

the video i made above, best conveys the emotion and feeling of my pilgrimage. sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words. i hope this video can explain even a fraction of the way i am feeling.

i’m so close to my goals i can almost pole vault over the goal post

on my first day of training for the big twenty six, i wrote it was, “cold as fuck.” that day in the middle of november, i had no idea how cold and snowy the winter would be or how upside down my life was about to become.

very quickly it got very cold. and then there was all that snow. one day in january it was so freezing i thought i developed frostbite on my fingers during a ten miler.

but despite the cold, there was beauty. my journey is documented in my journal with the words, “i fell in love with running all over again.”

“this run was therapy for me.”

“had a moment of feeling like everything is how it should be.”

“the sky is pink and gorgeous today.”

van morrison raves about october skies, but there is nothing quite as beautiful as running to exhaustion while it is snowing during a pink sunset in december.

still, training was a struggle. during these twenty four weeks my life has completely changed. so much has happened in the course of one hundred sixty days. i lost a job i loved. anthony and i celebrated milestone birthdays and got engaged! i traveled out of the country three times. i battled through a tumultuous break up with a girlfriend. last week i almost totaled my car.

and through it all, i ran.

at the time, i thought running was another obstacle to overcome, hurdle to get up and over. but now i see training for this race saved me. running got me out of the house and more importantly, it got me out of my head.

i wish i could say i went through these huge life changes with zero stress, but some days my anxiety got the best of me. some days it all seemed too much.

those days i would either attempt to console myself with popcorn and cheese, or i would run. most of the time a run would do the trick.

problems tend to seem a little smaller in the dead quiet of a winter afternoon.

yesterday i ran the final two miles of marathon training. i could not help but reflect on how different my life has become since i began preparing for the race.

as exciting as sunday will be, for me, it is not about the race. sunday will be about survival. i have battled through training, betrayal, and anxiety. i am a different beast than i was twenty four weeks ago.

twenty six miles is nothing.

bring it on long branch! SEE YA AT THE FINISH LINE!

eminem: survival
http://youtu.be/NlmezywdxPI

it'll just be you 'n' me

on my very big birthday, in one of my very favorite places, my very wonderful manfriend asked me a very big question.

i could not have been more excited to say YES to spending happily ever after with this beautiful boy.

anthony hagop sariyan, you have made each day of the last year and half the best day of my life.

i am honored you have chosen me to be your partner in adventure.

you and me.

alabama shakes: hang loose
http://youtu.be/ROla_B49KbQ

i will hold you up

rebecca and i shared a lot of classes in high school. i can vividly recall debating classic literature with rebecca and stressing out over ap tests together. through the power of social media, we reconnected and learned we have a lot more in common than we knew.

rebecca was one of the first vocal supporters of my-roaring-twenties. she is in that group of readers (i will call them my favorite) who not only reads, but writes back to me.

rebecca shared her own stories with me and has made this process of laying my soul on the screen a bit easier. thank you for being so candid with me privately these last few years rebecca, and thank you for agreeing to share your story with my readers.

*

I am so excited and honored Danielle asked me to share on my-roaring-twenties! Her request for me to guest blog comes at at perfect time, as I enter the last few months of my twenties!

I have had wonderful opportunities in my twenties. It is hard to believe that since graduating college in 2006, I have made three moves with my company. My journey has brought me to Central Illinois, Maryland (D.C.), and now Atlanta, Georgia. Not only have these relocations allowed me to grow my career potential, but I also now have work “family” throughout the country.

Through these moves, I have also had the most supportive husband a girl could ever dream of. Especially with this last move, he has been 110% behind my jumps and has put my career ahead of his own.

Now that we are getting settled in Atlanta, I am excited to throw my support behind him as he changes career paths from engineering to teaching. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to provide him just as much support in his new endeavor.

The last two years of my twenties have been filled with a whole new obstacle… becoming a mom. I always thought I would have kids in my twenties. It has been a hard reality to accept that it has been such a struggle for me and my husband. This definitely is not the road I chose, or one I would wish for anyone else.

Now that we are on this fertility journey, I am becoming increasingly thankful for the fascinating world of science which makes it possible for couples in all walks of life and with all types of struggles to start a family.

I am slowly coming to the realization that it does not matter how old I am when I become a mom. I will just be so thankful when that time does come. And I am trying to keep the faith that it WILL happen.

In the mean time, I will spoil my first “baby” with all the attention – my goldendoodle Dublin.

xx
Rebecca

joe cocker: have a little faith in me
http://youtu.be/hKPjHwyYZVQ

always be my baby

happy thirtieth birthday to me!

my mother continues to surprise me with her unwavering support and love. today she has gave me the best birthday gift i could have received. she wrote the words for my post. thank you ma. for everything these last thirty years and for the beautiful words.

*

When I was a little girl, I always knew someday I would have a baby girl of my own and her name would be Danielle. I ALWAYS knew…

30 years ago, today, she was placed in my arms and I knew I would love those squinty eyes and pudgy cheeks ALWAYS.

I always knew growing up she would be the best and the brightest, excelling at everything she attempted and rarely accepting “no” for an answer. I ALWAYS knew…

I always knew she was special. Whether she is perfecting a yoga pose, inspiring her friends, or saving the planet, she never quits-ever.

I always knew she would fight through adversity and come out on top. If she didn’t like a situation, she always found a way to change it and make it better. ALWAYS.

I always knew she would “roar” through her twenties and I can’t wait to watch her shine through her thirties because I KNOW she is going to do GREAT things.

I ALWAYS KNEW…

Happy Birthday my love, my life, my pudgy cheeked girl!

Love,
Mom

mariah carey: always
http://youtu.be/LfRNRymrv9k

perhaps that was my way forward, to accept that i had been reborn and must now discover the reason. once the idea took root, i felt an unfamiliar calm. - emma campion ‘the king’s mistress’
— 

on tuesday i had my fourth and final day at my new job. in the weeks leading up to this fresh start i was beyond excited, but when i walked through the door on my first day a knot developed in my stomach.

i chalked the feeling up to jitters, reached down, and decided to work as hard as i could. and then, the new job i was excited about, didn’t work out.

after a crazy few days, i decided to follow my passion and throw all of my energy behind writing. everything i have done for the last two and a half years has shown me how beautiful the world can be when i pursue my dreams.

tomorrow is my thirtieth birthday and the theoretical end of my-roaring-twenties project.

as my mission started winding down i got bummed. writing this blog and sharing my experiences has been the most rewarding experience of my life. this blog afforded me the opportunity to share myself and my discoveries. i have a place to write and people to read my struggles and share in my joys.

because i cannot bear to give this up, in the next few months i will be rolling out a brand spanking new website and embarking on another journey! i hope you join me for the ride!

thank you for the last two and a half years. we certainly had a time…

good times never seemed so good.. so good.. so good!

my “best friends that anyone could have” and i do a lot of things as a unit. in the spirit of best friendship, my loves stacy and danielle decided to write a guest blog as a team. they are so cute i cannot even stand it. some words from two of my leading ladies…

*

“Friendships don’t magically last 30 years, you have to invest in them.” – cb

When Dan asked us to write a guest blog, we thought it would only be fitting to write one together. And in true gbabe and stace fashion, it’s gonna be short and sweet.

Now that two of us have already hit the BIG 3-0 and the other two are quickly approaching, it is hard not to think back about all the amazing times we have had over the years, even back on the playground in kindergarten. From ballet classes, to soccer and track practices, to Bruce concerts…

to heartache, to living in other states and even countries, to finding our “other halves.”

The one place we can always count on to bring us back together is the jersey shore. Some things that happened, no correction, most things that happened down the shore will remain there, but we can share a few of our best memories.

It all started in 2006 with 400 ½ in Belmar, the house of dance parties and sleeping on porches. 2007 was the little red house, around the corner from Paddy Mac’s. To be honest, most of the events that took place here will remain unsaid, but it will always be the summer of the shaved eyebrow. ‘nuff said.

2008 we switched it up to Manasquan where dreams come true and you can always get a good shin burn. 2009 we remained in Squan, the house of the loose tooth, purple v-necks and can jam. 2010 aka “summer of love” was a continuation of ranger, poacher, bear.

From 2011 to present, we now congregate at the Gaveglio’s shore house mixing in new traditions but always keeping the old such as sleeping on floors (still happening even when we are 30 years old) and saluting the flag while shutting down Leggett’s.

No matter where we are in this crazy world, we will always have each other…

“True friendship isn’t about being inseparable, it’s being separated and nothing changes.” –unknown

boom.

neil diamond: sweet caroline
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1vhFnTjia_I

i don't belong here

when you work forty or fifty hours a week with a gal, it is a bonus if you can get along with her. it is even more special when you can call her a friend. i thank my stars for the years i spent working with lisa and look forward to the future years of friendship which lay ahead of us. today, some thoughts on home from a girl who gave me a sense of family at the place we worked.

*

A huge thank you goes to Danielle for asking me to guest blog. Thank you for being able to see this place I am in and understanding the yearn for a creative outlet, I very much appreciate the opportunity to use yours =)

More than I would like to admit, I am a sucker for horoscopes. It is a wonder to me how you can always find a way to relate. Today I received my weekly horoscope from a fellow Sag:

SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21)
“Some people say home is where you come from,” says a character in Katie Kacvinsky’s novel Awaken. “But I think it’s a place you need to find, like it’s scattered and you pick pieces of it up along the way.” That’s an idea I invite you to act on in the coming weeks, Sagittarius. It will be an excellent time to discover more about where you belong and who you belong with. And the best way to do that is to be aggressive as you search far and wide for clues, even in seemingly unlikely places that maybe you would never guess contain scraps of home.


Home.

The concept of home is lost on me these days. No matter where I am or how much I nest, I never feel a sense of being complete in that actual place. Lately, I have come to realize that home is where YOUR heart is, protected in your rib cage where its fragile pieces beat to make you full of life.

Apparently flesh and bones are not enough to protect us because we spend our lives picking up those pieces. Each time we put them back together, we rearrange them for a better fit, and we find new pieces to help fill the gaps, like concrete. Eventually all the pieces will fit better and stronger than ever before.

Although it is something I long for and have not found yet. I like to think that home is something no one can take from you and that it is found in your heart, kind of like knowing who you are, because as long as you have that, it doesn’t matter where you are or where you are going because you will always be home.

xx
Lisa

radiohead: creep
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9rsqg95anNw&feature=share&list=RD9rsqg95anNw

we went back inside sat down had a few drinks

when i said anthony and i were looking to get away for the weekend and enjoy some time, just the two of us, i did not expect to get exactly what i asked for.

the car ride to cooperstown was a bit rough, with extreme cold, winds, and a bit of snow. after the long ride, we checked into the hotel to relax before heading to dinner. we discovered we were two of only six guests staying at the hotel. talk about alone time!

the tiny town itself was practically deserted as well. turns out cooperstown is even more of a seasonal destination than we originally thought. most restaurants were closed and there were no people walking around.

luckily alex and ika was open and served banging burgers and even more delicious gourmet grilled cheeses (yes we ate grilled cheese as an app.)

the next day, after a beautiful eight mile run on the rolling hills, ant and i finally hit up the baseball hall of fame. we were among the handful of people visiting which allowed us the opportunity to leisurely experience everything at our own pace. we had time to chat with the few other couples there, take some cool pictures, and read everything we wanted about the baseball greats. it was an experience i will never forget.

after the hall of fame, we hit up some local bars and restaurants where for the first time in a long time, we had no place to be and were in no rush at all. at the bar we talked with locals about baseball and the history of the town. we played the juke box and pool with two kids who grew up in cooperstown. at the last destination of the night a couple we met during the day walked in and plopped down next to us to hang.

there is something almost retro about the town which lends itself to long coffee breaks and conversation. i did not reach for my phone one time that night. instead, for a few hours, we sat listening to music and talking with a nice couple who enjoyed baseball, weekend trips, and even played the hi/low game with us.

it may seem strange, but as we drove away from cooperstown and headed home, i felt certain this town would become a part of the fabric of the story that is danielle and anthony. i can envision us coming back to this place for years to come and just like baseball, it felt like home.

peace love and baseball

bruce springsteen: glory days
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6vQpW9XRiyM

lovin', is what I got

by now, you may be familiar with my memory reel theory. i believe each human witnesses a series of defining moments as we cross over at the end of our days. i do not believe it to be so much of a ‘life flashing before your eyes’ deal, but more of a highlight reel of the moments which changed you. kind of like espn’s top ten.

i have collected about eight or nine of these treasured fleeting moments in my years on this globe.

sunday’s memory reel moment did not come during the race, or even as i crossed the finish line of the new jersey marathon.

once i (barely) completed my twenty six point two miles, i walked over to the reunion area. the screams from my people were deafening. a laughing cop opened the gate and let my mom run through the security area to hug me.

i saw all of my friends with signs, smiles, flowers, and tears. friends from wildly different stages of my life all laughing together.

some of my favorite people in the world were having a wonderful day without me and it was beautiful.


^^ i was pretty excited about the star shaped medal ^^

watching them find me in the crowd made every second of the almost five hours of running worth it. walking up to my posse is a moment burned into my soul.

my friends were calling themselves ‘team danimal.’ in the moment i knew it may be the truest statement ever spoken in the whole wide universe.

thank you ‘team danimal’ for cheering me on at the marathon and for cheering me on always. there is NO obstacle too hard or too long when you have a team like i have.

sublime: what i got
http://youtu.be/0Uc3ZrmhDN4

call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family. whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.
— 

- jane howard (british actress, model and novelist.)

so thankful today for the people who have stood by me during the last few crazy weeks. we cannot always have sunshine, but having my few and true to dance with me in the rain, makes waiting for those rainbows that much more fun!

huge thanks to my people who braved the mini storm with me. the forecast has clear skies ahead!

i saw the sign

before my yoga class this morning i put a prayer in my jar. i prayed for a sign that i am on the right track, that i would be safe in israel, that this new career path i am on (more to come on that soon!) is the right one, that i am moving in the direction HE wants me to move in.

i asked for a sign, and as always for guidance, patience, and strength,

i threw the prayer in the jar and headed to class.

class was beautiful. i was one of three students practicing this morning and when i laid down on my mat for savasana, i felt peaceful and whole.

upon sitting up and opening my eyes i saw there was a nun in a full habit standing directly behind me. she explained she was from new hampshire on a mission and felt as though she had to come inside.

we raised of hands to our third eye, closed our eyes and did our collective ommm. by the time i opened my eyes again, the nun was gone.

i asked and i received.

i was gifted an amazing literal, physical sign one hour after i asked for it.

there are no words for the feelings which have come over me since the appearance of the nun this morning.

wishing everyone of you a beautiful day filled with surprises and joy.

ace of base: the sign
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DNPjeIamsck

when i learn to fly

after practicing yoga for over three years… i finally got into crow pose.

crow has been a thorn in my side since the first days of my practice. to top it off, making ‘perfect the crow pose’ lucky number thirteen on my list was probably not the brightest thing i have ever done.

that being said, i finally am getting more comfortable in crow. praise baby jesus.

i am so thankful i have had the patience to keep trying.

that is the thing about yoga… patience, hard work, focus, and discipline are rewarded in the sweetest way.

special thanks to my mamacita for playing paparazzi.

foo fighters: learn to fly
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1VQ_3sBZEm0&feature=kp

and it feels like... home.

when people ask me about my longest relationship, i tell them i have been in love with the same girl for twenty five years running.

the very first minute of my very first day of kindergarten, i met my best friend. i was crying because i did not understand why my little sister could not come inside. stacy walked over, grabbed my hand and told me to come play.

she has been holding my hand and telling me cut the bullshit ever since.

last week i found journals buried in my hope chest. it was amazing to read words, i wrote over fifteen years ago. what was even more special was the note i found inside from stacy. she read my poems and wrote me the most beautiful letter.

stacy has been a constant support for me. she never judges or questions. when i get weird, she gets weird right along with me. we can talk about creepy sutff like, “if i were not me, then who would i be?” or “where was i before i was here?” or “but who are we really?”

she is one of the few people i know who truly loves unconditionally.

the day my sister was in an accident in thailand, is a blur. i do not remember calling her, but the next thing i knew stacy was sitting next to me, calling family and making sure i ate.

there are twenty five years of more examples, most of which i cannot divulge on the interweb, but suffice it to say, stacy knows more about me than any human being has a right to know.

i love you spl. i could not be more blessed to have grown up with you or to witness the beautiful things happening in your life now.

happy valentine’s day to the longest love affair of my life!

for eva eva.

madonna: like a prayer
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79fzeNUqQbQ

another little piece of my heart

sometimes i pray to god. other times i pray to my grandmother who i lost when i was fifteen. i find myself looking to her in my most difficult times. times when i cannot understand the actions of the people i love. times when i feel as though i do not know which way to go.

i want things to be simple. i yearn to reel in all of the chaos and focus on the few and true. i need my blood people.

i was brought up in a house and a family where we take care of each other with food. we use a beautiful meal to celebrate and to grieve. we cook to show our love.

for years my mother has refused to show me how to prepare the family sauce. she claimed i was not ready to learn and she was not ready to teach me. she held her mother in law’s recipe like a deep secret that would only be revealed when the time was right.

this last month has been brutal. every time i make a stride forward i get smacked back.

this weekend my mother decided the time had come. she knew i needed to be let in on the secret. i needed to feel the healing power of garlic, olive oil, and tomatoes.

i could feel my grandmother in the kitchen with us yesterday. i knew she was watching over me as i shaped the meatballs. i knew she was proud as the smell of her sauce filled up the house.

with my mother guiding me, i prepared a beautiful meal for my family. the same meal my grandmother made for my father when he was a boy. the same meal my mother perfected. the meal i will make hundreds of times for anthony to comfort him and make him feel loved.

thank you for guarding the recipe mom. for making me wait until just the right moment to pass along the secret.

number fifteen… learn the family sauce recipe… check!

janis joplin: piece of my heart
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tVfoT1r8Ay4

take me out to the ball game

i am a “more the merrier” type of gal and like to surround myself with friends and family almost constantly. that being said, anthony and i make it a point to have mini adventures, just the two of us… whenever we can.

anthony has been talking about taking me to cooperstown, ny pretty much since we met. the quaint little village of cooperstown is home to the baseball hall of fame and i have been dying to go since i started following the great american pastime in my late teens.

originally we were planning to hold off until the spring to make our pilgrimage to the mecca of baseball, but decided the trip would be even more fun in a deep artic freeze!

this weekend i will be visiting the birthplace of baseball with my favorite person in the world.

cannot wait for two days away with my love to do all the our favorite things: talk baseball, eat delicious food, run, and be silly! is it friday yet?!


^^ my strawberry mets era jersey. snagged just in time for the weekend! ^^

frank sinatra and gene kelly: take me out to the ball game
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PmdRlFGDIvA

turn you inside out

it has been the longest year of my life. it is nutty how much we can cram into three hundred and sixty five days.

twenty thirteen was one of the most exhilarating, and also most trying years i have ever had.

delicious vacations, rockin’ memories, and extreme challenges were all peppered into my mixed bag of crazy.

for as many dreams as i realized, i saw just as many hurdles.

thankfully, i laughed more than i cried and felt love more than i felt hurt.

i am so thankful for all i accomplished and the adventures i have been lucky enough to be a part of.

with a new year just around the corner, i am jazzed to see what else this wacky world has in store for me.

i am anxious to continue challenging myself to look at the world from a unique perspective and hopefully…finally see clearly.

this year i started the process of learning to let go… of control, of unrealistic expectations, of pain.

through running, writing, yoga, and loving an understanding man, i began to find my center and my calm.

hopefully this trend will spill into next year.

for the coming year, i resolve to continue trying to relinquish a baby bit of control. i have learned the world will go right on spinning if i miss a day of running, or let the dishes stay in the sink for a bit. this year i also learned i like brussel sprouts.

more than anything this year was packed with music, friends, family, nonstop laughter, yummy food, and beautiful runs. if i can keep all of these things in my life on my next trip around the sun, i will be a very lucky gal.

wishing every one of you the happiest final days of twenty thirteen!

bruce springsteen: i’m going down
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aaKRByNhb0Y

if i am going to be honest, this thanksgiving, i am most thankful for anthony.

i am a handful. one minute i am making chia seed pudding and green juice and the next shoving cheese and candy down my throat. not at the same time. that would be gross.

i have all these ideas and dreams and plans. i also have intense anxiety which makes a lot of my big goals, and little tasks, difficult.

i hate when things are left on the counters, but i make our closet a huge mess. i leave spit in the sink and hair in the shower. i don’t like being late but i can never find anything to wear. i make him swamp sides of the bed every night. i always ask him to make me tea and then forget to drink it before it gets cold. i steal his sweat pants.

but for some reason, he still loves me.

he supports me and helps me realize my dreams.

he flew to seattle with me for a cup of coffee. he trained like a champion and ran a two half marathons with me. he eats weird shit without questioning it. he volunteers.

at concerts and weddings and in our living room, he dances with me.

he embraces my wigs and my tutus. he finds sea glass for me on the beach. he gives me advice about my friends, my family, and my job. he takes it easy at bars and parties because he knows it is hard for me to be the only one not drinking sometimes.

he loves the children of my friends. he talks openly about starting our own family when the time is right. he makes me a priority in his every day. he helps me clean and cook and grocery shop. he reads my blog and shares the posts he loves.

he never pries into my past or questions me on who i was. instead he loves me for who i am today and who i am going to be tomorrow.

together we find new bands. we talk about jesus. we vehemently debate what the rap scene would be like if biggie and tupac were still in the game. we hang out with our friends. we play rummy. we cook. we run. we tell stories about growing up as kids in big families. we laugh about being spoiled. we argue about baseball and get excited for games. we leave each other notes… in the refrigerator, on the toilet seat, in our lunch boxes.

i am thankful for you every day ant, but especially today. THANK YOU.

happy thanksgiving everyone!