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Bye-bye 30s!

In Career, Contributors, Finances, Lifestyle, Relationships on August 7, 2015 at 10:10

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By AK Cespedes

My 30s started with a breakup. He and I weren’t as compatible as I thought we were when we were in our 20s. I had chosen to stay with him too many times, talking myself out of walking out. Afraid to be alone until I finally chose to let him go.

By 31, I was living in my new apartment. I was still reckless with my money and my heart, feeling vulnerable and overly confident at the same time. I was desperately looking for my prince charming, the man of my dreams, the man who would make his wife, his queen, the mother of his children. I hadn’t realized that I needed to become the woman of my dreams first, the queen of my home, the b**** in charge.

And so I became involved with the wrong man…again. And for 6 years I woke up each day knowing that I was not where I wanted to be and he wasn’t the man for me. I hadn’t recognized that I had a voice and I needed to listen to it, but the fear of the unknown was too strong. During those 6 years, I sought signs everywhere and waited for something to find me, guide me…rescue me.

Turning 40 was not something I was looking forward to at that time. I was afraid that I was never going to meet that man or that I was never going to have children. I tormented myself with thoughts like “my grandmothers are old and they’ll never meet my children” and I thought of the women in my family who had never gotten married or had children. They were alone and sad. I was terrified of becoming like them.

When I finally let go of that relationship of 6 years, I felt like I had reached the surface of the ocean. Like the world had just rolled off my shoulders. I had been carrying all this emotional weight to the point that it had turned physical. I was 30 lbs overweight. I couldn’t look at myself in the mirror. I was destroyed. I needed to recharge with urgency.

So I took off to Paris because why not? And I had sex with a French man on my 37th birthday.

And I enjoyed

every

second

of it.

Suddenly, I felt like a kid in a candy store, like I could do anything! So I quit my job of 8 years and took off for 43 days to travel. I went to Italy, Germany, Czech Republic, Austria, and Hungary. I turned 38 in a club in Bologna getting free vanilla vodka shots from the bar owner. I danced with the owner of the Firenze train station and was hung-over the next morning. And I was happy.

At that time too, I decided it was time to forgive myself for everything and allow for a clean slate.

By 38, I was doing a lot. I launched myself as a photographer and I couldn’t believe how smooth things started flowing from there. I had 4 gallery showings within a year. I read a poem in front of an audience. I chose to change my body. I chose to become the best version of myself before I turned 40. I needed a massive makeover: physical, emotional, spiritual, mentaland then some.

Now I’m a few months away from the big 4-0. I haven’t found the man of my dreams, but I am the woman of mine. I don’t have the children that I had been longing for, but I’ve allowed myself to be a child again and stand under the sun and breath the ocean air and drive with the windows down. Every day became the best day. I didn’t recognize myself anymore and not because I became a redhead and lost those 30 lbs. I had found that person that was always there. I had come full circle. I had rescued myself. I had found peace.

So 40, bring it! I am not afraid of you, I love you and I embrace you. I embrace you like I embrace the lines on my face, the grays in my hair, and the scars on my heart. There’s no going back to where I’ve been, my 40s will be the best decade yet!

And to you my 30s, thank you. You showed me what true love really was. You shook me up and redefined “rolling with the punches.” I learned to listen to myself and to those who were there to offer their experiences and life lessons. I learned to stop beating myself up for my mistakes, but rather celebrate each of my accomplishments. I learned to let go and to trust that my life was going to be everything that I wanted to it to be.

About AK Cespedes:

Peruvian-born, Miami-resident, daughter, sister, friend, traveler, photographer, food-lover, drinker, spectacular. Check out her previous post in our blog: “Me at 38” and her amazing photographs at: flickr.com/bluedress7

P. S.: It’s A. K.’s birthday today! Let’s show her our love! Happy birthday, my dear Karina! Thanks for opening up and sharing the best of you with us!

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“Motherhood and my new decade have given me a sense of place, of happiness”

In Contributors, Family, Lifestyle, Relationships on May 11, 2014 at 09:00

By Manuela Frencia

Manuela Frencia

When I was twenty I used to say that life would go downhill after twenty-five (how pretentious of me!), I look back at my past decade and it’s like a blur of college parties, job hunting, dating, moving countless of times, and at the end trying to find my place in this world… as I think about it, the twenties were stressful, it was leaving childhood behind and becoming a grown up.

As I was approaching the dreaded thirties, I panicked a little bit, here I was, married with a small baby and with the body that goes with it (not the sexy post-partum body celebrities show off), I wasn’t the glamorous woman I thought I would be by now, but I was so much more than that, I was a mother.

So, what’s thirty for me? Thirties are dirty diapers and burping cloths, is waking up in the middle of the night to check if my boy is ok, is cooking three different lunches a day to see which one will be successfully eaten, it’s Fridays nights eating pizza and watching series on the DVR, it’s breastfeeding sessions, swimming lessons and play dates.

I might have changed my Prada bag for Chicco’s diaper bag, and my high heels for sneakers, lab coat for yoga pants, but honestly, I wouldn’t change a thing. Because the real changes in me where not the clothes or material things, it was inside, something clicked, and I was no longer trying to fit in, I was in my place, in the “zone” I had been searching for so long… Nowadays, that I am a proud, wise woman of thirty I have become a poised person, I enjoy life as it comes and I literally live, enjoy and breath every new day as if it was the last one, because with children, as soon as you have them you realize that time flies, they grow up so fast, every day they learn something new and they teach you how to be surprised at small things, to find the positive side to everything.

Motherhood and my new decade have given me a sense of place, of happinessyes that’s what my thirties have been so far: Happy.

Thanks Manuela for being the first person who contacted us without even knowing us, just because you found our blog and liked it! Half Eritrean, half Italian, Manuela used to work as a genetic engineer, now she is a full time mommy! Enjoy her post and check out her blog www.madredelsigloxxi.com!

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Dear 2013…Thank You!

In Career, Family, Finances, Health, Lifestyle, News, Relationships, Spirituality on December 31, 2013 at 13:21

Dear 2013,

First full year in my 30s!

Today I thank you for:

-Giving us the opportunity to welcome you during  a beautiful vacation with our family in Palermo:

New Year's Eve at The Sgroi House in Palermo, Sicily

New Year’s Eve at The Sgroi House in Palermo, Sicily

-Having the support of my husband on very important aspects of my life all year long.

-Spending a great time with old and new friends during a week at a beautiful house in Maderas Beach:

Maderas Beach, Nicaragua, January 2013

Maderas Beach, Nicaragua, January 2013

-Keeping in touch with my friends and family in Miami, Dominican Republic and around the world.

-Having the opportunity to keep working in successful productions including amazing new projects with wonderful old and new colleagues.

-Being available to join my parents and help them move to their new home and reviving lovely memories while packing.

-Receiving negative results after medical tests.

-Getting back to a healthy routine.

-Being at the wedding of my cousin and confirming the wonderful husband God gave her:

Franchesca & Denijer, March 2013

Franchesca & Denijer, March 2013

-Receiving guidance and advice when I needed it the most.

-For “Just Give Me A Reason” by Pink ft. Nate Ruess

-Having the time and attitude to reconnect with the most special people in my life.

-Gathering most of our Miami friends on June 19th to celebrate my husband’s birthday! Watch video HERE!

-Staying in love and celebrating our 4th wedding anniversary.

-For Christmas in Granada, Nicaragua…All we need is love!

Christmas' Eve 2013, Granada, Nicaragua.

Christmas’ Eve 2013, Granada, Nicaragua.

-Finishing the year debt-free!

-Receiving so much support to this blog and the book project, for the beautiful essays that we received from our contributors,  for the editing company, cover designer, interviews translator, and author assistant that God found for this book, for having the opportunity to work on this worthy and creative project, and for the patience of my family, friends, and readers while I finish this book! As our contributor Osmara would say: “I’m not done writing this book yet because I’m living it!”

-Enjoying unforgettable trips, for the amazing hosts we had, the wonderful landscapes we enjoyed, and for keeping us in touch with our beloved family and friends, celebrating birthdays and good news, in spite of distance and different time zones! Grateful for all the inspiration I felt this year! Looking forward to applying it soon!

Cushion at Chapters Indigo Bookstore in Toronto, Canada, September 2013

Cushion at Chapters Indigo Bookstore in Toronto, Canada, September 2013

2013 is over today because I can’t ask for more!

Here is to 2014!

Wisdom, health, and love to enjoy it all!

Your biggest fan,

Laura

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Thanks to all our viewers and readers around the world!

In Uncategorized on September 22, 2012 at 13:08

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