At my core, I am a ridiculously corny, sappy romantic that loves to find meaning in every symbol and event in my life. Acting on these feelings-- finding ways to bring them to life in some material or behaviorial way--now that can be exhausing. Which is why I save that energy for times when it feels really natural to do so.
Enter Alex & Ani.
Our close family friend, Liz, was recently showing off this gorgeous bracelet her husband bought for her. "It's from this great spot called Alex & Ani. All of their products are made in the USA, they're reasonably priced and you get the same sentimental intentions of a Pandora bracelet without having to wear a Pandora bracelet!" (Sorry, folks...I'm not a fan). After more talk about the jewelry (and between wiping the jealous drool from my chin), I also learned that part of the profits go right to charity! I had to jump on board.
So, after some obessive searching for not just the bangles I found lovely, but the perfect starter bracelet that I could anchor myself to, that I could wear as a true representation of who I was... I found this gem.
I now get to wear this beautiful daily reminder of my successes.
Here's the little blurb that the creators so cleverly composed to snag hungry consumers like myself:
"A perfectly crafted, 8-sided sun represents the universal law that life's outcomes are a reflectoin of your efforts. You have limitless opportunity to positively lead and affect others. Empower yourself to shine brighter than yesterday, to let your passoins spark actoin. Astound yourself and those around you with your abilities. Embrace the energy of this powerful charm and create your own new beginning."
I know, right? They sure hooked me!
Whatever. I took the bait. Here's why this charm is perfect for me:
New relationship. This was actually the first picture taken of us as a couple. It was on my very first night in New Orleans, when I came down to visit and interview for jobs. The face was all smiles, but I had a storm of butterflies inside. This was no run-of-the-mill new beginning. This was a new life.
After living in Kalamazoo, Michigan the entire 27 years of my life, I was leaving to move 1000 miles away to New Orleans. New city. No more safety and comfort of sister and parents and childhood friends. We lived in a tiny apartment at the bottom of this house. I lived in a town where the bells of streetcars and 99% humidity were the norm.
Being a fur mama. I had a short stint while in Michigan, but was not the sort of mother I should have been. I had a chance to do right this time. I would be the best mom to this pup possible. And the shared responsibility with my husband was a new and refreshing experience as well. It is one of the many ways we make such a great team.
Our move to Chicago. New set of friends. New shifts in education that would challenge me in big ways. An hour commute one way that would challenge my innate road rage. Big skyscrapers became a part of my every day backdrop. New Orleans was nothing. I was really in the big city and had to learn how to fit in--and keep up. Did I mention all of the buildings?
Speaking of being a great team...new chance at being a wife! New marriage. These past 4 1/2 years have been some of the very best of my life. Love this guy.
After all of this newness, I was pretty mentally exhausted. Becomming a runner has been one of the best new things I've added to my life. It follows me wherever I am. It will never leave me. It never lets me down. Running is a lifestyle and I'm so glad to have it as a companion. I'm glad it's part of who I am.
It's fun to reminice. It's fun to pat yourself on the back for making it through some difficult but important changes.
What's even more fun is when it gives you an excuse to buy a new bracelet!