It was such a gorgeous day in San Francisco, no wind, no fog, just sunshine. I was on an adventure just 60 miles from my home. Although close, the city still felt like a different world. I loved these days; I’d hang out in the Marina usually at a bar with an upside down pig as its logo. All the twenty and thirty somethings, career bound and city struck, would crowd around the wood and glass. I’d sit there with my strawberry ambrosia, watching the people around me, writing in my journal and catching bits of conversations that whirled about the room.
In my personal experience, the one thing most essential to becoming healthy is something so simple that most people forget about it. It is available to all and owned by no one. What I’m speaking about ever so cryptically is the notion of hope. To me, it is the bridge between self-destruction and healthiness, desolation and happiness.
I remember the moment that I truly realized how mean I was to myself. Granted, I always knew that I was self-destructive, but for some reason, I failed to connect the dots in regards to what that meant. It was my first retreat to Bodega Bay with my community service group. There were more than 30 girls in a single house, all of us connected by a desire to help the children in our area. We laughed, played games, worked on business for the following year, and discussed issues that our club was facing. I felt close to all and bonded with a few.
It was a Friday afternoon and I was running late, as per usual, to meet my best friend at our favorite bar. With an espresso martini already waiting for me, I plopped onto the barstool. I was beyond elated to be here after such a busy week, not to mention, I hadn’t seen my girl in what seemed like an eternity. Our lives were changing so rapidly, I was afraid we’d soon be strangers. How silly, though, because our conversation and laughter echoed a friendship that was from many lives and not just this one.
Here I am, on a quest for self-betterment for about 16 years. Wow, that’s a long time and it seems like yesterday rather than over a decade. But, I then think about where I started versus where I am now; it feels like many lives ago. Who I once was, is a stranger to me and yet, there’s a nagging familiarity.