Monday, September 6, 2010

Don't fence me in....unless what's inside the fence has a taffy machine, a box of wine and a record player.


When everything is "new" again you find yourself describing, defining, and storytelling about "who you are" on a rather consistent basis.

You package yourself into a few nice paragraphs that you've let "define you" up to a point, that are milestones in your life's story or quirky anecdotes- you say a lot of, "I've done this...I do this...I would never....I have never...." and so on....

Each yes, or no statement- each label, each sentence that's said with absolute conviction, to better convey your "TRUTH" carves out a nice little nook for you to fit in. You burrow yourself in it and with your narrative you build up various walls, some stronger, thicker, sturdier than others- then of course, some have their loop holes and trap doors that are more malleable. Every declaration we make about ourselves is shaping your experiences, the lack of them, the abundance- the direction, the energy, etc. The story we tell ourselves and the people around us is what we're allowing ourselves to BECOME....and stay being.
Over the last two weeks with new jobs, new circles, new everything I've done a lot of storytelling- a lot of selling, "This is me, this is what I do, this is who I am, this is what I stand for and this is what I desire." The thing about all of that is, you can tell a story a million and one times, but are you okay with the truth that it conveys, are you HAPPY with the story you're letting define you???

You can also say "I'm a (FILL IN THE BLANKS) kind of person..." and the next thing you know you've flipped your world around and you're doing all of the things you thought you never would. Or maybe hadn't thought about period.

My past, my future goals- all of that IS a part of me, it's a PART of me...it isn't everything. Who you've been is a part of who you are and who you are in real time, presently, daily is defined by how you're actually living....and all of it is a part of an ever evolving "story."

So far I've been a shocker even to myself- those things that externally defined who I was, "I am a girl with a band and a boyfriend and I work from home, I'm a freelancer, I live in Denver." Those are gone now, now I'm a girl who may or may not have said I would do the OPPOSITE of all of this; works at a startup, lives at the bottom of a mountain (certain heels have had to retire, I know, sad day), crushing on someone who ISN'T a musician, hosting parties and packing my social calendar to the brim (my default mode is generally "hermit"), I go on dates (OK, I'M GETTING AHEAD OF MYSELF, I DON'T ACTUALLY DO THIS....but I project it happening....OPTIMISM is a part of my story damnit.)

I am a girl who now has enough strength not to Facebook stalk, call, or text my ex-even when I want to, I've revoked the privilege of him getting to know "how I'm doing"...because even if I were to tell him, his insensitivity and lack of care and respect for me as a human being will always be more than I should settle for. I am a girl who, three months ago saw my whole life accompanied with this person by my side...and now I'm a girl who unpacks her things that still smell of that "together life" and throws them in the washer, takes a deep breathe, and despite feeling raw and unsure, exposed and totally unforgiving, I decide that I am a girl who, despite when the lip starts to quiver with the indication of a tear, listens to that little voice that pops up and says, "You're doin' good Chelsea-Belle."

I'm a girl who said I'd never have a roommate again, I'd never open my heart again, I'd never have a job with a desk (which I've decorated charmingly, btw) and here I'm a girl who's doing all of those things.

I'm a girl who's trying to get better about writing Thank You notes and not leave wet towels on my floor. I'm a girl who still wears Welch's Grape Chapstick and basically orgasms every time I stumble across a beautifully bound vintage book, flavored licorice, or a really good cover tune.


....And you know what's exciting??........ I'm pretty sure just about ALL of this will change.......



What's your "STORY?" and do you like the way it sounds??















40 comments:

Alexis said...

I love you, come visit me. ;)

In all seriousness, it's so beautiful to see all the things you're accomplishing, it's inspiring.

It's funny how we always try to put ourselves in these little boxes, & I find it kind of exciting to find myself doing things I didn't think I would be. It takes some kind of strength I didn't know was there to go talk to someone about a job I didn't think I would ever try when I was earning my degree (which is so not useful, like I thought it would be). I find myself single & more guarded than ever starting to date someone. I've never been that guarded before & that leads to another first of being scared I'll be too guarded & it will ruin everything with someone I really, really like.

I find myself very parallel to everything you're saying here, love! :)

Mwah!

Kez said...

I like your new story.

My old story was: I am a successful university graduate. I was one of the favourite students among my peers. I had high marks and I got a job straight out of an internship for the biggest employer in my area. I have been earmarked for promotion after promotion and the world is my oyster. I've worked hard for this and deserve all the spoils from it. Children? Not for AGES!

My new story? I am a 26 year old woman who is currently not working after leaving an amazing job. I have had a lot of challenges in 2010 (terminal cancer of a close relative, caring for an injured partner, death in the family and other crazy curve balls)and am now considering staying at home to support my household in other ways. I am excited about this but scared of being judged. My plans for starting a family have been moved a bit further forward (although not just yet) because my husband and I have realised how precious life is.

Wow, sorry for the long comment but you really got me thinking. My story is SO different now. I grieved for the old story but I am ready for the new chapter. Hope you're enjoying yours.

Barbara said...

Life is so unpredictable. It's almost silly to plan everything out because you never really know what will happen. I'm so glad you are doing well, even if it's not what you expected.

Herding Cats said...

Your story is awesome - anyway the page turns. It sounds like you are doing so well, and well, maybe this wasn't the chapter you were expecting, but you are embracing it!

I am happy with my story right now as well. It seems that things are where I'm comfortable, and really maybe I should be nervous because comfortable can change rather quickly :)

itsybitsyknitsy said...

Your story is awesome Chelsea. My story is currently closing one book and opening another. Right now I'm kind of in a limbo of excitement and fear!

Larissa said...

You have a great ever-changing story Chelsea, that's why all these people follow your blog!

Chelsea Talks Smack said...

Alexis- I love you too and would LOVE to come visit and you know you're always welcome in Boulder, weeeee!!

Kez- never apologize for a long comment, I love them :) Whatever your story is transpiring to be...I hope it's a beautiful one, here's to new chapters.

barbara- thank you and yes, that is so true indeed.

Herding Cats- I always know when I'm comfortable, or kind of going through the motions, not necessarily in a bad way that there's likely some sort of change around the bend, and I try to see it as a good thing...its always good to appreciate the comfortable while you're in it.

itsybitsyknitsy- oh gurrrrl, i know that one, all too well.

Larissa-THANK YOU!!!! :)

Anonymous said...

I like it!" Chelsea Belle"!! You go girl.Take in all of the new joys and savour them!And don't be afraid to give a new man a chance.IF he has your heart, your Spirit,and is willing to share in all things, with you..You deserve that and more!A lady should be courted! <3

DC Princess said...

Isn't it AMAZING to go with the flow of life and see the unexpected places it takes you?

I love watching your journey love and love seeing you happy.

I'm on my new journey as well, and it's pretty crazy, scary and yet, amazing.

valerie said...

Your posts hit home a lot with me. I broke up with my BF around the same time you and yours split. It's amazing all the little things I ignored. Before...I was part of what was supposed to be an "it" couple if he could ever get his act together, eating way too much pasta and living too much of a me and him life.

Now, I'm rediscovering myself and reconnecting with old friendships while trying my hardest to make new friends. I'm crafty, sarcastic, snarky and fun. Apparently I look 10 years younger than I am and look like Tina Fey. It's amazing what people think of you when they first meet you and it's kind of fun finding out. I'm relishing in the little things...like no annoying guy keeping me up with his snoring. There are some plusses to single life. I had kind of forgotten.

Nuit said...

FABULOUSSSS!!!! changes are actually a blessing Chelsea, I am so glad you are embracing that!

You write wonderfully, everytime i visit your blog i smile and I decide I am going to have a great day. Can't forget that episode when you went to audition to be on Lady Gaga's tour {wink} that was my absolute fave!

xoxoxo

readsalot said...

I put myself in a box CONSTANTLY. I'm married, a student, work two jobs, have wonderful friends, and yet usually feel like something is missing. Like part of me is not where it should be. I think it is because of classifying myself in some way and seeing other people my age whose lives are TOTALLY different and wondering if I shouldn't be more like them.

Your posts always make me realize something about myself, so thank you.

Habbala said...

Yep yep. The whole "redefinition" period post break up is crazy hard-- but also kind of amazing. Just think of all the things you now know, that will make your life infinity better. (For example, I learned that being with a guy who, for 3.5 years, calls you beautiful a mere 1 time... is not ok.)

michelle said...

i pretty much know my "story", but i could use some revisions. this is a lovely post, and i'm going to try to take some of this to heart. if i saw i am something, i can actually be that thing :)

DShan said...

I think everyone reaches a point at which they realize the story of their truth is always going to be malleable. It's always going to look different at every snapshot taken a year or so apart, and getting comfortable with that is a tedious process of getting comfortable with yourself; the person who remains after all the labels and contexts and experiences are stripped away.

The major life changes always pierce the vail of 'I know who I am and what I'm doing', and (ideally) each one, as painful as it may be, brings more light to what's really underneath. What makes you tick. Your story is always partly the narrative of here and now, but the real story is everything BUT that.

Phoenix said...

I think I have about 8 thousand stories in me... and I change them to suit my mood whenever I want.

Lately my story has been all about me finally coming to terms with the fact that I deserve attention.

Lovely story, this one is gonna be...

genevieve, sandbox romance said...

Welch's Grape Chapstick? Hell, you're clearly cooler than Katy Perry. She wears cherry.

Goodness. I really don't know how you do it. But it sounds as though you've repackaged yourself. Add a shiny new bow and you're good to go! Who cares if it only lasts as long as it takes for the next person (preferably yourself) to unwrap everything. At least you'll look good doing it, and learn a few things along the way. People are like cakes and parfaits and ogres. They've got layers. Think of this as one more addition to the complex, amazing person that is you. The more the merrier.

I truly should not wax philosophical when I'm running off sweat and chocolate and this morning's coffee.

Jamie said...

LOVE.

ALL OF THIS. JUST. LOVE.

CuppyCakes said...

At the moment, my story is that of a constantly sick or injured 26 year old, about to be set up with a Farmer.
I'm pretty content with my story just now. But I'd like to not be sick or injured all the time.

Profit From My Closet said...

Beautifully written. We spend so much time labeling ourselves or letting others label us that we stop being fluid. We are ever changing it's a beautiful thing.

*I am the woman who never believed in marriage and found myself engaged last year.

*I am the woman who realized that man wasn't for me and started buying things for my new bachelorette pad even though it hasn't manifested yet.

*I am the woman who was a self proclaimed introvert but want nothing more than to go out and network and make new friends.

So we are ever changing beings and my rule is to just roll with it and stop putting labels on myself and allowing others to do it to me.

Emily Jane said...

Fantastic, fantastic post. Everyone says "the past helped you become who you are" - but forget to add that it doesn't have to DEFINE who you are. Once you've learned your lessons from the past, you don't have to drag it along with you, a bag full of labels to attach to who you are right NOW. Goodness, I used to define myself so differently than I would now. And by assigning labels we DO create walls, self-imposed limitations, boxing us in and ultimately often preventing us from being present, and like you said, just BEING.

Love this.

Sparkle Magic said...

I've noticed that after every breakup, my story changes. When I start dating again, there are so many more things I have to tell people than I did the last time I was out there. With each passing year, I learn more things, have more experiences, and become more confident and comfortable with myself.

San said...

I think it's absolutely ok to NOT put yourself in a box and to 'pre-define" who you are, because things might change at a moment's notice.

If you're open to change, you'll always adapt faster and live life fuller than others.

Elizabeth Marie said...

I love you.

Everything does change-you know my story right now...but I can't wait to tell you my new story when ya know, I see you in November.

!!!!!!!!!!!!!

terra said...

I'm trying to find ways to define myself that will not limit myself, if that makes sense. It's easy to get wrapped up in statements I've made about myself and I'm trying to remind myself that sometimes, things change. Cheers to your latest self!

Melissa Blake said...

This post is so inspiring to me, Chelsea!! I've always been afraid of change, so I've had the same story for years. But maybe a little chance can be good?

Couture Carrie said...

Love your story and your post title, darling!

xoxox,
CC

jessica said...

I'm someone who is completely uncomfortable TELLING other people who I am. Really I just can't sell myself and it just feels so icky and foreign to me. Doesn't feel true and realistically as my flaws are much more interesting and true to me than any boasting could provide. And no one wants to tell relative strangers look at my cracks, they are awesome.

But the thing is since I break out in rashes being asked who I am (or as it is in my delusional head, "being put in the spot"), no one will ever open themselves to a potential bond unless you give them these things to root something in.

I really need to invent a transmitter of sort to my heart and head. lol. xoxox Chels

carissa said...

My lord lady, you just made me cry.

I just went through a break up a week ago and I want so much to be where you are. I want to realize that it's ok to let go, that I will be ok...

But you just gave me hope!

Chelsea Talks Smack said...

I literally can't even begin to tell all of you how much I loved these comments- so heartfelt, so true, so honest....I'm honored that you are all sharing your "stories" with me. THANK YOU.

gem said...

After months of being unemployed, I have no idea what my story is or what my lines are or who I am to other people. Which is strangely nice? It's like I can pick whatever little thing about me to tell people. It actually makes me far more interesting than I really am, haha.

Garnet Flower said...

My story is simple yet complicated. Fascinating yet plain. Changing yet staying the same. I bust out of the boxes I feel limit me, just to crawl back to them for comfort later. I am fiercely loyal, and at times hypocritical. I am just a person trying to do my best.

As long as self-awareness is a priority and you are moving in the direction of growth, I believe it is perfectly fine to be indefinable.

I’m so, so happy for all the beautiful things happening in your life right now! Congrats on everything, you beyond deserve it!

TaraMetBlog said...

Your story is great. Thanks for the great post!

TaraMetBlog said...

Your story is great. Thanks for the great post!

mn said...

glad to know you're doing better and adjusting to whatever life throws at you. good for you. desk decorating is no easy task. trust me. it's a talent. i'd kill to have a desk to decorate bc it would be my little space in the world. my happy place away from home, ha.

Hippest Snippets said...

Hippest Snippets just wants to say how much we love your blog. We love your reading your transformation and how great your writing is.

Basically we would read this every day. You can have our desk job though. We have Clorox wipes.

hklover86 said...

i really wish I had your courage in life and that I could write the way that you do. The way you write is truly inspriring. I wan't to do a "my story" post as well.

Chelsea Talks Smack said...

gem- indeed, you will find that the next story is exciting, crazy, beautiful, exhausting- aLL OF IT and it will ALL be worth it :)

garnet flower- ah, yes, good points indeed and "self-awareness" INDEED. A definite key.

tarametblog- ah, thank you!

mn- ahhhh yes, i can understand that as well :)

hippest snippets- WELL THANK YOU, thanks for coming by- also, I love Clorox wipes. FACT.

hklover86- thank you so much, I think "story" posts are always a really great time to reflect, dig deeper, etc. We all have that courage there somewhere, it's just always easy to tap into..... you can do it :)

Gayle is Volatile said...

Love the way you write <3

-Gayle from www.gayleisvolatile.blogspot.com

Dr. Cynicism said...

All this positive and optimistic writing doesn't quite fit me... but I love it! I'm hooked and following you now :-)

As the old adage goes, "change is good." Without it, there's not much of our "stories" to tell. Life would become boring - and there's no room for that.

 
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