Aside from making a statement, count on me to reveal the treasure trove of deals that I find and the invaluable DIY-insight on how you and your home can look stylishly smart in a pinch & on a dime!
Who I am …
… is a Single Mother. It was a decision that I agonized over for an untold number of months. But once I gave up trying to look good by maintaining an ideal of what I thought things “should be”, the decision was clear: I could not get married and I would remain a single mother.
To make that choice and not look back, I had to be courageous, which is something I heard often from many men and women who had wished they took a similar stand earlier in their lives. At that time, I didn’t relate to myself as “being courageous”. Rather, I saw that I was acting within integrity by not giving my word to something I knew I couldn’t honor. Seven years later, I can clearly see that who I am is courageous.
… is an Adventure Athlete. It’s a natural combination — adventure is in my blood and athletics is in my genes. I started in high school as a State Championship hurdler and current record-holder, to a college track athlete, turned coach. Although coaches said I “had a heart of gold” and “would run through a brick wall” if they asked me to, I really wanted to know if I could.
After having my son, I put my moxie to the test by stepping into the ring as a Muay Thai kickboxing student.
I’ve since learned that I can handle getting the wind-knocked out of me, my face stung by an iron blow, and my legs pummeled as cut from underneath me. From all of this, I found I could get back up with a level-head, performing with stellar speed and precision.
Yet, these athletic accomplishments pale in comparison to my November 2010 completion of the Navy SEAL PT Bootcamp and the Tri-State Tough Mudder.
For five pre-dawn days, I was at the mercy of Navy SEAL Jack Walston who ran a tight ship with hours of low crawls, bear crawls, duck walks (by the way, the cute sounding names are code for mental toughness), and, I would say “countless push-ups” however, the total reps for one day came to more than 300.
It sounds crazy, yet, this PT Bootcamp was final preparation for the Tough Mudder — a race through 12-miles of mud, water and terrain, plus 19-military style obstacles. I ran this because I wanted to take on my biggest physical and mental athletic challenge yet-to-date as a victory over where I was a year ago — flat on my back in the middle of my month-long hospital stay for a Traumatic Brain Injury.
Also, I ran it in honor of all the troops who have sustained TBI, those who are recovering and rehabbing, and those who never will have the chance to recover and train to the same level as they once could. I remembered them as I did train, and on those days where running was a will to overcome physical out-of-shape pain, as well as “brain pain.” My Finish Time: 2 hours 20 minutes. Now, I confidently know I am “one tough mother.”
… is a Traumatic-Brain-Injury Survivor. Too often we live like the probable future is our certain future, yet there is this little thing called fate, and when things don’t go “our way” we get upset. I believe this is why I frequently hear: “I am sorry you had to go through that.”
This phrase I still can’t relate to, and imagine I never will, as I am not sorry my “fluke” of a brain injury occurred — after all, life’s never tasted sweeter. Still this experience has taught me how to deal powerfully with whatever comes my way — including staring down my own naked and vulnerable morality while just being with it … I am a master of being present moment-to-moment.
… is a Swing Dancer. I started when I was 14 and I’ve been Jitterbugging, Lindyhopping and Charlestoning ever since. There is hardly anything more thrilling than an open dance floor and a big band pitching its crescendo or a classic crooning ballad that sets my heart racing in nostalgia. I am — most definitely — a swing kid.
… is a Living History Reenactor. Going to reenactments is like holding Mary Poppins’ hand and jumping into sidewalk drawings — the history ceases to exist in text books and comes alive in brilliant micro-seconds when everything aligns in such a way that the sights and sounds create the shuddering of two parallel universes colliding.
History, though, is infinite as every person’s account is a different story.
Being able to sit-down with veterans and witnesses to the 20th-Century’s biggest moments, is like opening a treasure chest. Being able to honor those living and fallen veterans, as well as commemorating the history of our world, is a way to impart a legacy of lessons, knowledge and insight for the future. I am a fervent antiquarian and romantic nostalgic.
… is an Entrepreneur. There isn’t a cloud that goes by that I don’t see possibility in. While this blog was still in its “beta” phase, I already had a business plan mapped out for an entire brand. I was fine if Thrifty Vintage Chic never captured a successful following, but I was clear of where I could see it going if it did — a nonprofit foundation, an apparel label, a TV-series … I am a visionary.
… is a Journalist. For more than half my life, I’ve only related to myself as a journalist, occupationally.
As a result, I never considered my fashion-interests to be viable — as what serious journalist would?
However, that’s the fallacy of the ivory tower’s last words, as I believe that through fashion the world’s most urgent and pertinent issues can be highlighted while inspiring a wave of mainstream citizens to contribute to solving these matters. I am an international journalist, shifting the global perspective by connecting humanity through fashion.