Beginning Again (and Again)

Beginnings.

What a fascinating idea, right? It seems that for the past couple of years, I’ve been in a constant cycle of “beginning,” again and again. And it hasn’t quite bothered me. I think I’ve realized a part of me thrives in movement — the freedom to be unattached, unchained, always moving and wandering (hell, I always feel the need to move with all my runs and walks and driving in the car and always on my feet at work, lol).

I like to think that the older we get, the more and more we grow into ourselves. It’s like life is a process of learning and unlearning: learning more about yourself while unlearning the parts of yourself that hold you back.

You know, these past couple of weeks, I’ve been in period of a lot of reflection: looking back, looking forward, and being grateful for all that has happened to get me to where I am today.

I feel like I’ve finally just got it. I get it. I know myself, I love myself, I know who I am and what I want and I just… respect myself.

If you’ve kept up with me for the past couple of years, the past three years have been quite the whirlwind. I left my life of comfort for a life of uncertainty, naivety and discomfort.

I moved six times in the past three years. I packed my bags and left home indefinitely at the age of 24. And who I was at 24 — just a naive girl, eager to learn, experience, make mistakes, struggle and get out of her comfortable life to push herself to new limits — is so different than who I am today at 27.

“I feel like I’m always searching, but I don’t even know what for,” I used to tell myself.

I feel like each year since moving was a new chapter in my life that allowed me to “toughen up” a little. I’m not that young(er) girl who lived at home and didn’t know what it was like to live in a big city, all on her own, with no one to rely on, living in crappy living situations, surrounded by random faces and empty places, feeling very lost, alone, isolated and searching for a majority of her time.

Just a few months ago, I was living in a crappy apartment with a roommate who abandoned our lease, with me trying to figure out how to file a court case with my roommate, all while working full-time and trying to stay creatively and mentally sane.

“I am so done,” I remember telling myself, as I blissfully packed my bags and left LA only to retreat home for a majority of the summer (which is the best and mentally sane thing I could have done for myself).

Growing up, I’ve always been a girl who was scared and fearful of her own power and potential (as much love and encouragement I received from people, I never quite believed it). I’d shy away from my own creative pursuits, sharing tidbits when I felt comfortable of my own music and writing. I hustled my way chasing and discovering, meeting and uncovering new artists, actors and musicians who were just doing it. Through interviews and meetings, events and hangouts, I’ve observed, uncovered and learned a lot for the first two years I moved out here. And, a part of that is because of who I am — the natural draw I have, the power I have, and the eagerness that has drawn people to me (as a mentor, would say).

It wasn’t all for nothing.

Fast forward to today, I’ve moved into a new apartment, with my own room and privacy and space. It’s in a quieter neighborhood, while still close to everything and everywhere I need to be. And I’m also the most “financially stable” I have ever been in my entire life (and I’m just working part-time).

“I’m a f**king adult now!” the kid in me squeals. I’m just crazy grateful to be fully dependent on myself (even if my mom and family would take me in 100% with arms wide and open, which would make me so happy yet a part of me shies away from). After three years of hustling and being broke and trying to be some “starving artist” when I was really just a lost girl searching for something because she just felt so “stuck” to even embrace her artistry, I am extremely grateful to have work and support myself and eagerly know how to care and tend to myself during this crazy, crazy time (I believe those years of isolation/spiraling as a “broke girl” taught me how to lean on myself when no one else was there).

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I wrote this back in Feb 2019 when I was chasing music and shows, losing sleep, constantly moving and emotionally in a dark place. It feels like I knew this girl just like yesterday, and the reason a lot of you know and follow me today is because of meeting me at a show or my incessant photo-taking and covering artists. Yet, I realized I was chasing it because it was the only thing I knew that would make me happy in a place I felt so damn lost and alone — yet why the hell was I so positive and knew this was all temporary? • #tbt “For all of 2018, I chased the hell out of shows. I gravitated towards the artists who inspired me; who I found a relation to; who showed me their process, their music, gave me words of wisdom on how they got to where they are; and who I even made a new friend out of. I went to and covered well over 100 shows in the past year. And I can’t help but fathom the fact that my energy, attention and mind is focused elsewhere nowadays. It’s been a wild ride. And moving out here on a whim just over a year and a half ago with nothing really stable to help me feel secure is starting to catch up to me. But I know this is all part of my process. I’m a deep thinking creative, feeling and sensitive soul. I care a whole lot and work a whole lot and can prioritize the wrong things or people. And I can’t wait to see what comes of this all… All these moves and this struggle, for what reason? I think we try to make sense of other people because we’re really just trying to make sense of ourselves.” 🌹 • I have a soft spot for you feelers and deep thinking souls. I’ve never trusted anyone who was “too happy” bc honestly we all have feelings and we have to be realistic about approaching them. Once you figure out how to, and how to handle everything that overwhelms you, then you can find peace. It took me a long way (a whole year and a half later) to get to this feeling of utter freedom and peace I feel from myself — and it really was about simplifying my life, recognizing what I want and need to feel safe, secure, happy and confident. I knew it would take time. I needed to struggle and I needed that dark place to know what I need more of in my life.

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There was a time earlier this year when someone from my past had come up. The year prior, I had been in a cycle of constant moves and feeling overwhelmed by life, struggling to take care of myself, support myself and… to just feel sane and like my best self.

That girl feels so familiar to me, because it wasn’t really that long ago. But at some moment, something clicked. That person reached out to me out of the blue, while I was living my life, doing the things I want, having finally found myself again and in a good position, and I felt entirely unaffected by their message.

“I don’t even care,” I remember telling myself.

For so long, I had wanted and strived for a feeling of belonging in this strange, crazy and foreign place that doesn’t feel like home. “I don’t even know what I’m doing here anymore,” I remember saying.

And that’s how I knew. That’s how I knew I was happy, thriving, and in love with my life and myself. I was unaffected, completely present with the people around me. Even if after all this time, people have showered me in their attention and company, I wasn’t so lost anymore. Instead of looking out or for more, I looked at what was in front of me. And I just felt so present.

I wasn’t looking anymore, because I wasn’t searching or seeking for anything out of anyone or anything. I was living the life I wanted to live — happy, free, independent, in love with myself, doing the things I love, surrounded by people who make me happy, and always and constantly inspired and being inspired.

As this “new chapter” in my life has begun (moves to new homes or cities are always a bit of a change), I feel, for the first time in my life (away from home), in my element. I’ve found a situation I deserve and is more ideal (versus living in living rooms in the middle of crazy cities, lol). I know my boundaries and how sensitive my energy is, and how to always create a life and lifestyle that best serves me (self-care, music, nice home, peace of mind 🧘‍♀️). And, after a long stretch of time, I have found myself just feeling very… powerful.

I’ve tapped into something. I’ve tapped into something on my own I haven’t felt before. I’m musically and creatively inspired. My mind has the freedom to roam without limitations. And, as I love myself, I realize I am serving and approaching everything and everyone in my life from a place of ease and love.

I don’t really care for making the next “big thing.”

I don’t care for interviewing the next “big artist.”

I don’t care for being in the know of the latest films, music, television, entertainment.

I don’t care for being the first to cover something.

I just don’t care.

I’m in a healthy flow. I’m present. I’m grateful to work. I’m confident and am happy to live it out. I’m happy to stay low-key and much more detached from people (which is my natural environment, as I’ve always been a girl who grew up in the woods in the outer suburbs of the East Bay, lol). I’m enjoying exploring and experimenting with music as much as I can. And I’m writing whenever I feel, with no pressure. (The “low pressure” stakes of quarantine has kind of allowed me to feel more in flow with myself.)

I thrive when my life is much more simple, and that’s just what it has become.

It’s been a long time coming, but after years and years and countless YouTube videos of singing and playing and trying to create something, I’m enjoying the process. I’ve lived some life, learned about myself, struggled, cried, searched, dealt with toxic people, handled stressful situations with grace and… Now I’m just here.

I’m ready to share. I’m ready to dive in.

Because I just don’t f**king care anymore (haha).

Oh, and as some dear friends have recently inquired, I actually feel much more open to love. More than I have been in a long, long time (because I just don’t f**king care, and I’m just in love with the progress I am making for myself). Lol.

With love and honesty, always,

Rachel

One response to “Beginning Again (and Again)

  1. Pingback: I Don’t Chase, I Attract: How I Got to a Place of Ease and Love | beauty within·

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