Amazing October

Last year I wrote a rather optimistic post called "Amazing October." I wrote about all the plans I had coming up over the next few weeks, and all the reasons I was going to love this beautiful month.

I know I'm not the only one here who's happy October has arrived. There are the obvious reasons, of course: Halloween, seasonal treats that just taste better when there's a chill in the air, outdoor fun at pumpkin patches and apple orchards, and classic movies like Hocus Pocus on repeat.

And then there are other reasons.

This October looks pretty different for me than last year did. At the start of October 2014, I was looking ahead to my first big race, a visit to Cape Cod, a yoga workshop with Erin Motz. And knowing all that was coming, I sat down and made my plans and knew it was going to be an amazing month. It was.

This October, I'm preparing for another big race. It misses the month by just one day; on November 1 I'll be running my first full marathon. Instead of heading north, I'll be traveling south to watch someone I love do something she loves, and not only accomplish a huge goal of hers but also become an elite athlete in a way I can't even fathom. And while I have no yoga workshops scheduled for now, scaling back on my running while I taper means I'll have more time to devote to my practice than I've had in a while.

This October is different in other ways too.
As of this writing on Monday night, I don't have a job. I do, however, have an apartment lease and a car payment and that pesky need to buy groceries to eat. And I don't really have a plan. Certainly not a five-year plan, but not even much more than a five-day plan. And it changes hourly. But I do have goals, and a vision, and more optimism than I've had in a really long time. I don't have a whole lot of answers about this October, but I have a whole lot of ideas for how to get them. I have challenges ahead, but no reservations about my ability to meet them head-on...even if I'm not exactly sure what sort of armor I'll be wearing when I reach the front line.

I love the seasons so much because of the undeniable signs of change they bring. This week as I watched (and felt) the temperatures plummet from low 80s to high 40s, it's been made really plain and clear that we're (finally) in a new season, and with it comes a new season of life for me. For the first time I feel capable of actually "rolling with the punches," as they say. Waiting a day or two for answers. Making eight different backup plans, knowing that even that many might not be enough for all the different ways my circumstances could change or surprise me. Figuring it out when I get there. Seeing what happens. Nailing down the details later.

This is the season of my life where I'm learning it's okay to not know everything right now. I'm learning that it's okay to let go and have faith and accept help and shake things up in a big way and stop making apologies for refusing to give in. Most importantly, I'm learning what I really, really want out of life, what I want my story to look like, how to make it happen, and how to stop feeling bad about creating an unexpected alternative for myself when I know that's what I need to feel like I'm living my best life. I'm learning to not be bashful about saying I intend to live my best life, even if that means going a bit against the grain. I'm learning to reject conventions I disagree with and how to do so meaningfully, purposefully, and intelligently. I'm discovering these mental roadblocks I've set in place to keep me from breaking down the barriers I don't want to be confined by anymore, and learning how to bulldoze them.

I'm finally learning how to take the right risks in a real and useful way. And because of those risks, I think this is going to be an amazing October.

Comments

  1. You have so much drive Alyssa - you are going to do great things this october and throughout!! xo, biana -BlovedBoston

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  2. You are amazing, friend. As Biana mentioned above, you have so much drive and coupling that with your "can do" attitude, I just know you have an amazing month and rest of the year ahead of you! I'm so looking forward to hearing about you conquering your marathon!! xo

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  3. I love reading your posts b/c they always give me the boost I need as well! October is my favorite month for all those reasons, but mostly the change. You know I always am thinkin of you and supporting your dreams friend!

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  4. One full month more of mental and physical preparation for your marathon makes it an incredible October. No job, no plan. Just dreams, belief and passion. That's you and I love you for it.

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  5. One of my favorite general life quotes is from Zora Neale Hurston - there are years that ask questions, and years that answer. We truly need both because that's what life is.

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  6. sometimes we just need to go with it instead of having everything planned out. i know another blogger who is doing the same - she quit her office job and decided to work at starbucks for a bit. that freed up some time for her to live life and do what she wants - hiking gorgeous mountains, wandering around different towns/travelling etc....i think that's amazing and if you can, then i say why not?!

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  7. This is beautifully written, my friend. And incredibly inspiring, as well. Sure I have a 'career' and such, but it's not one I want forever and I need to face those challenges full-on in some sort of armor as well (loved that line of your post!) I'm struggling to know what to do, what to change, how to change it, etc... your post has me thinking and dreaming again so thank you :)

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  8. One thing I always think about when I'm stressed out, or the couple of times I've been between jobs and trying to figure my life out, is how this will look to future me. The future me that has it all figured out and sees things in that light. We can't just skip ahead, but sometimes it helps just knowing that there is an "ahead" and we'll get there eventually, but for now we have to make the most of "now." I'm going to be joining you in "funemployment" this winter, so your posts are really resonating right now. I know it can be an awesome opportunity if I go into it with the right mindset, but it could also be stressful and unpleasant, if I let myself drift.

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  9. i hope this october is absolutely fabulous and amazing! and of course, i hope nov 1 is just as amazing and fabulous. also, go you for going against the grain. doesn't matter which way the grain is going, as long as you're happy doing your thing! :)

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  10. Best wishes on your marathon!! I am sure you are going to do awesome!!! And I am also sure that this October really is going to be amazing for you. I always feel like we are foolish to think that we can plan things out and it fall just in to place all the time. Life isn't like that and the sooner we let go of some of our plans, the sooner we can enjoy living in the now!

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  11. This IS going to be an amazing October. Maybe not in the same way as Octobers past, but in its own way that is going to make it as amazing as you are. I'm so proud of you for taking on these challenges and facing them head in, whether you have all the answers or not. I used to think that being prepared for things meant having them all mapped out ahead of time, but now I'm figuring out that being prepared means being able to take things in stride. I can't wait to see how this month goes and ultimately culminates for you!

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  12. "I have challenges ahead, but no reservations about my ability to meet them head-on..." YES! You can doooo eeeeeet!!! (I had to, lol) But seriously, with a passion and zest for life like you have, there's no doubt you are going to find something GREAT!

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  13. You are going to have an amazing October I'm sure! I hope it brings lots of positive changes your way! :)

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  14. You have a wonderfully optimistic outlook on this situation, and things ALWAYS happen for a reason. While it may not be ideal, and stress may be high, try to take a moment each day to enjoy this mini break from the grind. You'll be back to work before you know it. Best of luck with your upcoming marathon AH!

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  15. I love that you have leaped without a net. It's such a terrifying thing to do, but you're doing it and keeping the anxiousness (at least outwardly) at bay. So many people fear change, which I've never understood. Change is NECESSARY to move forward, to find better opportunities. You ARE going to have an amazing October, and rest of the year.

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  16. The next to last paragraph. Love it. I've learned you can't live your life for anyone else's expectations because they're not living it for you. I think with your drive and motivation, you will be living your best life sooner than you think. Opportunities happen in the strangest places and when you least expect them.

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  17. I feel you on not knowing exactly how I'm going to meet the challenges coming up, and not having a 5-year plan. I have an outline :). But things will always change, and hopefully we are willing to meet those changes. I'm also with you on 8 different back-up plans; I've got a few of those, as well. But rolling with the punches is the best way to go, as well as finding what you really want and what's important to you, who cares what is important to other people who may not have the same ideas as you.

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  18. I seriously love your outlook -- no matter what challenges you face, I know you are going to make the best out of them! I am beyond excited for your marathon! You are seriously going to rock it.

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  19. Ive said it time ans again, if I lived in a place with seasons, fall would be my fave. I also love your perspective on seasons of life and learning through them. I really just love listening to you to be honest, your soul speaks through your words! Cant wait to read about your marathon :)

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