Taryn was here: Missoula MT

*Note from the writer:

Toward the end of 2018, after a much-needed nervous breakdown, I decided to embark on a nationwide trek across the country. This series will serve as a recollection of the shenanigans I experienced throughout my travels. These are my stories (dun dun *Law & Order chime)

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Travel advice from a handsome stranger

So, while my Airbnb hosts had recommended Missoula to me weeks prior, it wasn’t until a Brad Pitt-beach vibes lookalike- barista had suggested that I go there that I was sold on the idea. I get it; I may have a tinge of shallowness to me, sue me. So, in mid-December, I scouted another Airbnb listing, and Abbey and I were on our way. We could only spend a handful of days there as we needed to make two more trips before I was due in Vegas for Christmas.

The trouble with goodbye

I am slow to warm up to change, so it was time to leave by the time I got used to Seattle. I was so bummed because it was a great month, and I could’ve easily stayed longer. The last day was bittersweet; I cleaned up the apartment, packed Abbey in the car, and said farewell to my hosts. We made a final trip to Woodland Park. One, I didn’t want Abbey to have to be couped up in a car for hours on end without exercise. Two, I wanted to get one last forest adventure under my belt. Shortly after, we began our pilgrimage to Missoula. I should also mention that it was clearly wintertime, and I literally thank God to this day that my 2003 Honda Accord made it through the snow without any problems.

Somewhere between Washington and Montana

A fun nature-based adventure

I totally forgot to disclose that due to my laptop being stolen (this happens during my Charlotte, NC leg of the trip), I am missing a ton of photography, which sucks, but it is what it is. Now back to the regularly scheduled program. My time in Missoula was short but sweet. Abbey and I walked around time and bought yarn at the local yarn store. Of course, I had to buy a Montana Starbucks mug. I actually did blog during my time there, so some productivity did happen, ha! The snow was a welcomed change of scenery, and fortunately, I had the good sense to buy a winter jacket in Seattle. The Airbnb that I stayed in had chic, barn-inspired decor and laundry, which is something I love! It’s a shame that I don’t have photos to share, it was a great experience.

A deer in the headlights

Funnily enough, the last night I was in Missoula, as I was driving back to the Airbnb property, I saw a deer hanging out in the middle of a street. The streets were incredibly dark and when he finally saw me, he jumped in surprise (which is weird because I was there for about 30 seconds trying to get a shot, and darted off in a flash. I laughed because I could relate. The next morning I went to the downtown drag, had some coffee, and eavesdropped on some collegiates talking about their idealistic viewpoints and whatnot. I smiled remembering what it was like (though for me, it wasn’t too long ago) to be on the cusp of adulthood outside of college. Life after college for me was a bit similar to the deer getting freaked out by the headlights. Now into my 30s, I can happily say that the feeling does pass in time.

Missoula in the rearview, Idaho Falls in the front

One of these days, I do have a plan (or a hope at the point) to get back to Missoula, perhaps in the summer. Next week, we’re in Idaho Falls, ID. I even manage to hop to Jackson, WY for a split second. I’m on the fence about breaking that up in its own story. I have a week to decide. Anywho, I hope you enjoyed this week’s travel adventures. I’ll see you in Idaho!

Taryn makes a habit

I’ll be honest, I used to hate the dreaded ‘S’ word. And by ‘S’ word, I mean schedule. Reflecting on this, I suppose it’s because of my control issues, but I’m working on those. I think. On my birthday — about 3 weeks ago– I decided that I would make a new habit

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Tale of the two journals

I keep two journals. One is my journal that hashes out my personal thoughts, day-to-day musings, etc. The other, is a prayer journal of sorts. It’s one where I chat with God, ask questions, ask for forgiveness, ask for help, and pray — so to speak. Both are incredibly personal and brutally honest. But, I suspect, God appreciates it when we come to Him honestly and openly.

Journaling regulalry does a mind good

I’ve journaled or have written things ever since I could read. Consistency has never really been my strong suit. This blog is a testament to that. I mean I have around 250 posts and we’re coming up on 7.5 years; yikes! Anyway, I’ve committed to writing every day for the last 3 weeks and boy, what a difference it makes! My headspace is a lot nicer. Who knew decluttering your mind would be so helpful?!

Habits aren’t so bad

I’ll admit, the first few days, it was a will-power of sorts that forced me to put pen to paper every day. Now, I can’t wait to spill my guts, happily sharing what’s in my brain with God and myself. There is so much peace when I rely on Him instead of my harebrained schemes. I’ve also found, that in the stillness of reflection, that He does answer my questions and prayers. I’m grateful for that relationship as it governs my relationship with those I regularly do life with. So now, I begrudgingly yet happily admit that I plan to continue my journals as the benefits far outweigh the discipline I need to maintain consistency.

On the road again

Speaking in the name of consistency, I’m happy to report that the third installment of the Taryn was here series will come out again on Monday on schedule. This coming week, I get to share with you my time in Missoula, MT. I do have more pictures that aren’t just of espresso cups, I promise! I didn’t stay long– about 3-ish days, but I did manage to pack some fun sightseeing while there. So stay tuned as we travel to Montana. Cheers!

Taryn was here: Seattle, WA

*Note from the writer:

Toward the end of 2018, after a much-needed nervous breakdown, I decided to embark on a nationwide trek across the country. This series will serve as a recollection of the shenanigans I experienced throughout my travels. These are my stories (dun dun *Law & Order chime)

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Dreams of the cliche

I will fully admit that my urge to ‘see the world’ was conceived on a cliche desire to live life. I wanted to fully marinate in my ‘freelance life, nomad fever dream’ idealism come what may. In retrospect, it’s amazing what a shattered sense of self will trick your mind into believing. Also, social media and the perceived ideals of success (Instagram and Pinterest, anyone?) don’t help, but I fully own my hilarious misadventures.

A full three years later, I can say with love and humility, that I was dealing with a great sense of loss and ran away from life in search of something better. The most ironic part? I never found (what I publicly said I wasn’t) that something better. Years later, I found the truth, but I digress. You came here for my adventures in Seattle and I shall not further delay. Anyway, packing up Abbey and myself, we put Eugene, OR. in the rearview mirror and chartered toward Seattle. We made a fun pitstop in Portland, OR for lunch and a walk. There was this fun shop that had a patio for dogs. Abbey and I dined, fueled up, and carried on in our journey.

A month in the Emerald City

We arrived at the Airbnb in the evening. For this leg of the trip, I booked a month-long stay at a garden apartment. It was a really cool spot. The owners, a chill young couple with a sweet kiddo were from Maryland, and the space had some nice Maryland touches. I had arrived in mid-November and they graciously invited me to their Friendsgiving. Since I had no plans, I uncharacteristically accepted the invitation. It was a fun event, which was reinforced by the liquid courage I partook prior to joining the festivities. I don’t have photos of the event (or many meaningful photos of Seattle in general). This trip is definitely a coffee trip of sorts.

Aesthetic of the superficial kind

The place was situated between the Ballard and Fremont neighborhoods. This meant that there was a coffee shop (rather dozens) within a mile radius of any direction. I’m fairly certain that I tried all of them. I was hellbent on living the freelancer life, whatever that meant. To me at the time, it was brooding in coffee shops, carefully creating prose for my clients. I had some fat contracts at the time (hence spending a month in Seattle, it wasn’t cheap!), so your girl was balling. In hindsight, not financially smart, but hey, life was lived. As I write now, looking over the pictures I did take, they are so lame! I’m cringing about sharing these, but hey, I’m committed to being honest. I say that in the kindest regard. The pictures (shown below) chronicle a surface-level experience. However, I did have meaningful interactions a few weeks in.

Making friends and digging nature

After my first 2 weeks, I did end up investing more time in the community. I found a cool Seattle-based freelancer meetup. I met two ladies who I managed to dispense some solid business advice too. It also made me realize for maybe the first time that I actually knew what I was doing. When you’re working alone, it can be hard to gauge your own progress, so it was reassuring to find out that I was doing quite well! I had also met up with another lady who I had met at the Friendsgiving. We went out for Ethiopian food and exchanged pleasant a conversation. Nothing became of those interactions, but at the time, they were much-needed. I even ventured to a local yarn shop and purchased some skeins. Til this day I have not finished a project, but I’m working on that. On the nature front, Woodland Park was literally 1.5 miles away. Abbey and I made a daily habit of going. The first time I went, my first thought was ‘this would be good for hiding bodies’. So naturally, the writer in me decided to make a novel about this (it’s in the works, but boy did my travels help color the characters).

Embracing the spontaneous

My time in Seattle was fun, reflective, and spontaneous of sorts. In fact, several people– including one ridiculously attractive barista– suggested that I head to Missoula MT next. To keep up with the randomness of my travels, I did just that! To wrap this up, as an older, self-professed wiser person, I can look back on my time in Seattle with a smile on my face. Life and travels will never go as planned, but there is beauty in the random adventure. It doesn’t look as folksy and hipster when you’re going through it, but the sands of time eventually dull the sharp corners, allowing you to enjoy the journey. Funnily enough at the time, I swore that I’d end up in Seattle (or Eugene for that matter) permanently. I’m happy to report that this doesn’t end up happening. For one, I desperately need the sun. Anyway, I hope you enjoyed my Seattle adventures. If it’s not evident yet, these travel adventures wind up being more about me than the cities/towns I visited. However, I promise, if you stick with me, I do end up having some interesting adventures that will surely make you chuckle. Next week, we’re in Missoula, until then, I hope you indulge in some shenanigans too!

Taryn does the work

It’s amazing what you can do when you commit to doing it. That pertains to life, work, relationship, and everything in between. As I continue to work on myself, how I understand the world and people around me, I am pleased to find that progress is possible!

The illusion of control

If there’s one thing I’ve learned about life, it’s that control is a futile pursuit. It’s just not possible, and that’s ok. Looking back, I can see how I’ve tried to control my environment, the people around me, my work, etc., etc., etc. In fact, I banked my well-being on my ability to control the external things around me. Guess what? That makes for a miserable and erratic life. Now, rather than trying to control the things that I cannot, I focus on managing my resources more effectively.

Being responsible for me

These days, I’m focused on taking care of myself, spiritually, mentally, emotionally, physically, and so on. This also means being kinder to myself. If you’ve spent time with God, you know that He loves you no matter what state you’re in. I’ve worked on (and am continuing to work on) loving myself in that same regard. Conversely, I find that the more grace that I extend myself, I’m able to extend it to others as well.

Enjoying the process

In life, there is no destination, just continued progress. So instead of obsessing over getting to the ‘finish line’, I’m learning to enjoy the process. As I continue my progression, staying present in each moment, I see the beauty that life has to offer. This doesn’t mean that I don’t get frustrated or see the errors and flaws of the world. No, it just means that I appreciate the positive aspects more than I disdain the negative ones.

Reflection in a photograph

A fun aside, I printed and framed my travels all over the walls of my apartment in Las Vegas. In the mornings, I’d sit on my couch with my coffee, and Abbey laying at my feet looking at all of the places we had gone. Like a time machine, each photograph brought me back to the very moment. Remembering those moments and the colorful array of emotional experiences intertwined within them taught me that there is hope even in the darkest times and that God was with me (and still is) especially in the confusing moments that I could not yet process.

The next destination

If you tuned in last week, I finally started sharing my travels that first began in late 2018. Last week was Eugene, OR. This week is Seattle, WA. So be on the lookout tomorrow, as I share my experience in the land of the coffee bean. I spent a month there, soaking up various experiences and people. As I relive these experiences by sharing them with you all, I am filled with gratitude that I was able to embark on these adventures. With that said, I hope you have a wonderful week!

Taryn bets on herself

I am a very particular person who likes the freedom to come and go as she pleases. As such, that doesn’t bode well for the traditional American life. It’s not a preference; it’s the way I’m hardwired. I don’t see the point in many mainstay behaviors that our collective society deems to be valuable or necessary. And trust me, I’ve tried to fall in line– much to my own detriment. So what am I blathering on about? Relax, this isn’t a manifesto of extremist views; I just am not cut out for the 9-5. And, if I’m getting off of my pretentious high horse, I know a lot of people aren’t either. Just so we’re clear, I’m not proclaiming to be some amazing unicorn that is ‘not like everyone else’. 😉

Road less traveled

When I started this blog, I was a 23-year-old snot-nosed kid who fundamentally understood that things in my life needed to change. It took some trial and error and perhaps, the wisdom of experience, but I am doing what I had set out to do. Funnily enough, though, some part of me had wondered if maybe there was some magical workplace where I could fit in. The truth is, even when I played the game according to the house’s rules, I still lost. So I’ve folded and returned to my own game. After a year and a half of teamwork, I’m running back to the hills of autonomy. But, this time, I appreciate it far more than I did previously.

Thanks for no thanks

I’m a workhorse, through and through. My ability to get stuff done is quite uncanny. Working for ‘the man’ penalizes that in so many ways. Let’s not even get started with the politics of workplaces and the incompetence of leadership, this would turn into a novel rather than a blog post. Running your own business seems like a risky decision, however, when you look at the untapped earning potential and autonomy, one can quickly see it’s actually not as risky if you’re willing to put in some elbow grease. More importantly, I don’t want to work on someone else’s thing. I want to work on mine.

Investing in me

I will 1000% admit that taking my last two contracts was smart for many reasons. That said, it did reaffirm my need to get the lead out and create. Life is short, and I don’t want to waste it on things I have no interest in. So, I’m betting on myself. That means I’m investing in my health, investing in my future– I’m investing in me. There was a time when I couldn’t see the value in that. My thought process was if it wasn’t making an immediate return on investment, it wasn’t worth it. But the long game looks very different than the short game.

Discipline over everything

As I’ve grown older, I’ve seen the value of disciplined behavior. Not obnoxiously overspending, writing everyday, working out regularly. Discipline is what garners success. While I have an arsenal of skills, my lack of discipline through the years is readily apparent to me. So with that being said, I’m pulling out the dreaded S-word (schedule), and I’m setting myself up to win. I’m doubling down on Taryn and doing the work to ensure the odds are in my favor. To my fellow dreamers and schemers, may the odds be in your favor as well!

Taryn was here: Eugene, OR

*Note from the writer:

Toward the end of 2018, after a much-needed nervous breakdown, I decided to embark on a nationwide trek across the country. This series will serve as a recollection of the shenanigans I experienced throughout my travels. These are my stories (dun dun *Law & Order chime)

By Chance

After the world’s worst wedding duties (I was a slave of honor and bridesmaid within a month of each other), I was ripe for change. Spending two months in Big Bear– where I met a literal bear and enjoyed the mind-scarring visuals of an old lady pooping on a trail— I knew adventure was right around the corner. Doubling-down on my cliched writer’s journey, I set my sights on Seattle, WA. But, in order to get there, I had to make a few stops along the way and Eugene, OR was one of them.

A Brief Encounter

Originally, I had only planned to spend 2-ish days in Eugene back in early November of 2018. But upon arriving, I knew I would have to come back (There will be a part 2 to this story.). At the time, I felt a kindred spirit in the weird town of Eugene, and my Airbnb was a few steps from the Willamette River.

Traipsing around town

Maybe it was because I was so desperately looking for belonging and nursing a massively bruised ego, or maybe it was the quirkiness of the city that I related to, the 2 days I spent in Eugene were fun and restorative in nature. Abbey and I walked about town, enjoying the gorgeous and moody scenery. I even ventured into the local bar in Whitaker to what the Portland/Lakers game.

The Airbnb that I stayed at was this really cool tiny house behind this neat property in the Whiteaker neighborhood. I would eventually come to be friends with the owner and spend an extra 4 months in Eugene in early 2019, but more on that later.

Fun in the impromptu

I was really grateful for my knee-jerk decision to go to Seattle. By proxy I found Eugene, which later plays a major part in my travels. If you’re wondering why there wasn’t a profound aha or learning moment in this story, it was because there was none. In hindsight, I was very wounded (and reopening the wound) at the time looking for solid ground. Now, I’ve come to appreciate those moments of healing. They taught me the importance of slowing down and taking care of yourself. In order to conquer new territory, rest is needed, and I was able to start that process in Eugene. There is more to the Eugene saga, but for the sake of continuity, I will share my travel stories in the order that they incurred. Up next is Seattle. I’ll see you there!

Taryn gains perspective

It’s amazing what time and reflection can do to the senses. As I continue to remove the cobwebs of this blog (there are a ton, ha!), it serves as a time machine of sorts, jettisoning me back to 2018, when I first began my travels. Boy, was that girl in a state! I can say that now, with a high degree of empathy and understanding. It was a hard year, which incurred a ton of loss. However, now that I have the gift of time and perspective, I completely understand why I needed that growing phase and how it’s changed me for the better.

Life requires growth

Being the incredibly sensitive person that I am, change of any kind is particularly jarring. When things got hard, I was hard-pressed to combat the enemy (change) with a huge dose of comfort. This usually came in the form of my surroundings (people, places, and things). But, what happens when the change you so desperately need is counterintuitive to your comfort zones? It blows up. And blow up it did. Ironically of the things I lost, the growth it inspired within me gave me so much more.

Growth is in the eye of the beholder

Granted, when I was going through it, I thought I was being punished or penalized in some sort of way. But now, I realize that God was shaking me loose of the things that were stagnating me. I couldn’t rely on my patterns of thinking or behavior to get me out of the situation. I had to develop new tools and systems to pass my tests. These days, when I’m working through discomfort, I try and find the lesson to be learned instead of reacting like my world is ending. Shaking the victim mentality was tough but incredibly necessary and oh so worth it.

Perspective is everything

With this new perspective, I’ve gained a lot more empathy for my fellow man. Everyone is going through something, and life is incredibly messy. I am grateful to be tethered to the One who created me as that relationship gives me perspective in ways I could never have understood. There is a lot of brokenness in this messy world, and people are going through varying means to find comfort. I say all of this to say, that it gives me the grace and space to give to give others as they work it out. If I could offer advice to anyone, it would be that reflection is so necessary for growth. Take stock of who you’ve been, who you are, and who you’re trying to be. Be kind to yourself in that journey and give people the space to reflect for themselves.

On a lighter note

This was a lot more introspective than I had intended, but hey, I’m going where my hands on this keyboard are taking me. I’m currently digging up the photos and stories of my traveling days (I got to every state except 7, and I made it to Canada!) to share with you. I plan on sharing one each week, sharing the fun and sometimes absurd shenanigans I found myself in. On that note, happy Sunday!

Taryn resurrects the blog

I cannot believe it’s been over 2 years since I’ve written on this thing. Excuse me while I blow the dust and cobwebs off of this blog. So much life has been lived within those 2 years. Some really great stuff, some not so great stuff, but ultimately, I thank God for the growth, the lessons, and the simple fact that I’m alive to tell the tale!

Age is fun!

I just celebrated my 32nd birthday last Sunday and I have to admit, I love getting older! I find that as each day passes, my comfort level in my own skin increases. Honestly, my 20s can suck it!

I moved to Texas!

It’s a long story, but the short version is that I moved to Texas after spending the last 2 years in Las Vegas. It’s certainly a culture shock, but one that I welcome with open arms. A major plus is that my parents and I finally live in the same town. This is something I’m incredibly grateful for.

I’m writing my novels and stories!

I finally unclogged my emotional bowels to write. One of the things I’m trying to do is create short stories to help keep the creative juices flowing. Now that sitting in coffee shops has become possible (something I did not realize I took for granted pre-pandemic), I’m constantly inspired by the folks living life around me.

Jesus is awesome!

Not to get all preachy, I am so grateful for God and how He’s kept me sane. It’s been an intensely personal and daily relationship, and it sustains me in so many ways. As I continue to learn and grow in Him, He’s given me peace, healing, and restoration in ways that I never knew that I needed.

An outsider’s life for me!

In the last 18 months, I’ve work more closely with companies as a contractor. While the money was great, it did solidify that I am indeed an oddball not meant for the traditional, team work environment. I used to think of that as a bad thing, but truthfully, it just is. I love who I am, quirks and all. I suppose it’s the age (and the gray hair that comes along with it) that brings self-acceptance.

Tune in for what’s next!

I will be writing more frequently, telling the stories that I had promised about my travels almost 3 years ago! I’ll also update on the current happenings of my adventures, so buckle up, grab some coffee, there will be laughs. Cheers!

Taryn Gets Robbed

I wish I were joking, but it’s true. Some lovely person broke my driver’s side window and stole my laptop bag, wallet, and guitar. The laptop was on its way out, so I’m not totally broken up about it. Plus I have an iPad, so I’m still able to get my work done, thank God!! I am bummed about my bag, however. My mom got it for me in Turkey and had my initials put on it. It was such a cute leather bag, everywhere I went I received compliments on it.

Wait, I’m on the East Coast?

I should mention that I’m in North Carolina. Charlotte to be exact. I had every intention on sharing how I went from being in Arizona 2 weeks ago to ending up in NC, but this robbery happened, and I figure I’d talk about that first. I will, guarantee that I will go more into detail about my recent travels. I’ve been to Texas, New Mexico, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, and South Carolina. This week, I PROMISE, I’ll share photos and my shenanigans. Anyway, I should explain how I got robbed.

On a Hike

As I’m nearing 1 week of being in NC (I leave tomorrow), I’ve been indulging in the beautiful trails that are all around Charlotte. Honestly, I’ve had such a wonderful time here. Anyway, this morning, I decided to go to a new trail instead of the 4 mile trail that I’ve grown to love. I decided to take my laptop as I was going to sit in a coffee shop after my hike to do some writing. I get to the destination, and on a stupid whim, I decided to leave my wallet in the car, because I didn’t want to carry it*

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* Friends, never leave your ID, cash, valuables in a car.

I know, it was dumb. So anyway, I spent about 2 hours on the trail, enjoying the beauty all around me. I decided to leave my camera at the house I’m staying in (thank God). As I was walking back, feeling super refreshed and in good spirits after the hike, I was greeted by a park ranger who asked if the vehicle she was standing next to was mine. I was about 50 feet away, so I could barely see her, and the car was out of my line of sight. At first, I thought I was parked in an unauthorized spot, but as I got closer, she explained that someone busted the window and opened the trunk.

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Enjoying Life’s Curveballs

To be honest, after the year I’ve had, having my car broken into didn’t even phase me. After taking the information in, I sighed, called the cops, and inspected the vehicle. The thief even stole my earbuds case, which is also its charger. What’s stupid is that I had the earbuds with me, so all they got was a case, and now I have no charger.

To add to the mania, the park ranger legit hit on me. She low key dropped the “did your boyfriend buy you that jacket” qualifying question, to see where my orientation leaned. I laughed, because who in their right mind thinks it’s wise to hit on someone who’s just gone through a burglary? I sidestepped the question and told her I prefer to be alone and that my dog was all the company I needed. After 20 minutes or so, she left, and I waited for the cops on my own. I didn’t mind, though. After dealing with the officer (I swear, both the ranger and officer were as cliche as can be), I removed the glass and drove back to the house I was staying at.

 

This may sound weird, but I’m incredibly thankful for all of the ridiculous things that have happened as of late. It’s really made me grow closer to God and to keep things in perspective. I’m safe, Abbey wasn’t there so nothing happened to her. The window  isn’t going to cost a lot to replace and will be fixed tomorrow. Aside from losing some cash, my ID, and some gadgets, it’s all well and good. I am annoyed that I will be having to go to the DMV AGAIN as I just got my license replaced in May. Also, I had just purchased some amazing InkJoy gel pens and a really adorable pen case which was in my bag. If only you knew how much I LOVE my pens. Oh, and my journals and manuscript notes were all in there. There were years of ideas and notes about my books. So, that’s a tough loss. Oh well, such is life. I’m thankful that I have parents that were kind and helpful through this ordeal. I’m grateful that everything taken is replaceable.

Motivated to Make it Happen

If you’re of the Christian faith, you know that opposition and setbacks occur as a way to discourage you from growing closer to God. I find that when you’re cultivating that relationship, expect some weird stuff to happen. So, rather than discourage me, it’s making me double down in my faith, and be who He’s called me to be. These crappy moments just make me want to sing His praises even louder. So with that being said, I’m going to finish packing and getting ready for my next destination. That and I’m going to write more and with an increased gusto as I will not be deterred in being who I am. On that note, happy Monday and I hope it’s a good one!

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Taryn Gains Reentry

Hello and long time no see!

I’m Back!

Pardon my abrupt 4-ish month hiatus. Turns out, I needed a leave of absence to get my bearings. Admittedly, as I was beginning my 3-month “vacation” it was clear that I had some internal work to do. Thankfully after a few (tons) conversations with God, I made peace with a lot of things, learned to rely on His wisdom and not my own, which set me free in so many aspects of my life. It’s been a pruning period, to say the least. I will say that I am much better for it and am thankful for all of the experiences that have led me to this point thus far. So here are a few things that I’ve been up to in my absence.

Taking Responsibility

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In January, I was mentally/emotionally in a chaotic state, not dealing with my “things” very well. Fortunately, I could tell something was amiss, and though I was committed to doing the “work”, I needed some help. Faith really played a part in my healing process. I began to ask the questions, “how did I get here?” and “in what ways did I contribute to this mess?”. Funny thing is, if you do ask God these questions, you’ll get an answer, though it may not be what you want to hear. In short, in asking the tough questions, I realized that I needed to take responsibility for the relationships I engaged in and how I spent my time. The truth is, I had a habit of hanging out with insanely damaged people. When I realized that the baggage I was carrying was 98% not my own, it radically changed my view and perception about myself and the world I created.

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Killing My Ego

As much as I hate to admit it, I have a Texas-sized ego. I’m smart and not only do I know it, I have no problem demonstrating it. It’s an issue I’m constantly managing, ha! I LOVE problem-solving. My spatial reasoning skills are quite amazing. There’s nothing wrong with having a healthy ego, but when you begin to believe that you are indeed Superman, therein lies the issue. Maybe I hung out with the wrong people because I believed I could fix them. Maybe I hung out with broken folks because it made me feel superior in some messed up way (also I hate admitting that, but it’s true). The problem is, birds of a feather flock together, so I would either change the people I was with or eventually become just like them.

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Obviously, the latter happened. Of course, if you keep mentally trying to divide by zero, your brain will begin to shut down or explode. On a subconscious level, I knew something was awry, but I suppose at the time, it was easier to numb myself than to make changes. One of the worst things that I had to own was that I easily accepted the nonsense and beliefs of others without questioning or checking in with my own perspective. Friends, that is such a vile way to live! If there is one thing I hope that people could embrace, it’s to not allow other people’s perceptions of you rule your worldview. Once I began to question what people were saying and look at what they were actually doing, I began to realize the truth: a lot of people are hypocrites and blindly live according to societal standards or damaged value systems. Upon realizing this, it freed me to pursue the life that I want for myself, devoid of acknowledging the opinions of others.

Freedom in Being Yourself

After getting off of the “people-pleasing” rat race, the fundamental elements of Taryn came back, which I’m so thankful for! I now understand what I think, how I view myself, and what works for me to sustain a happy and meaningful life. Currently, I’m in Brian Head, UT with Abbey, enjoying the peaceful solitude of mountain life. There’s like 5 people up here, which is awesome! I do, on occasion, venture into the nearby town of Cedar City to people watch and do grocery shopping. To be honest, I can only last down there for about 3-4 hours before I become increasingly annoyed with the townsfolk.

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I don’t know what it is, but one thing I’ve observed in my newfound “awareness” is that a lot of people are asleep at the wheel, merely going through the motions, and not fully aware of what it is that they’re doing. Seriously, I’ll have conversations with people and I will gently posit questions and 100% of the time, there’s a lightbulb going off in their minds. I don’t say this to come off as superior or judgmental. And maybe I’m able to see it because I too was once in this state. This observation honestly makes me want to go out and hug people, and tell them that it’s going to be OK. To me, seeing folks in this light signifies that there is something profoundly wrong with society.

Back to Creating

Anyway, this post wasn’t meant to be so existential, but then again, this is literally how my brain works. So, I will own it. I do want to share that I did end up making the podcast! The first episode airs in like 15 minutes, which you can find here! Is it perfect? No! But, I am proud of what I’ve accomplished, even though my audio-engineering skills leave a lot to be desired. Feel free to take a listen and share your thoughts! The whole podcast is meant to be humorous and I do not take myself seriously, so I hope you can get a laugh or two at the mis/adventures I will share on it. With that, I’m going to go outside and watch Abbey play in the snow. Until next time!

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