It's a new dawn, it's a new (Tues)day, it's a new life

November 23, 2021

In my recent article on the Knoxville Voyager, I defined myself and my brand as "fun, sweet, and always outside the box." While these may be true, reflecting back on this, I no longer want to be defined in the first place.

I don't like to define people. The minute you do, you're confining them to a handful of attributes, failures or successes but people encompass so much more than that.

Over the past year, I've been going through some pretty massive changes. In that time, I've distanced myself more than usual from social media (most notably this is reflected in my lack of posts and absence on my blog and infrequent scattered presence on Instagram). Social media is a huge time and energy suck, and it was important to me, while undergoing this change (still there, quite honestly), to take a hiatus.

It's amazing how much you can notice when your eyes aren't constantly being diverted in 800 directions all at once. The mind stops the comparison game, you stop asking yourself why XYZ person is getting more likes/followers/(insert other baseline for self-worth here) than you, and most importantly, you stop looking for validation in all the wrong places and allow yourself the space to come back home to yourself.

I'm not blaming all of my problems on Instagram - far from it. It's up to us to use social media consciously, and at the time, I was doing anything but.

That being said, I'm done playing the Instagram game like I was before, and it has pushed me to revamp this whole brand & blog because I'm so much more than just a girl  woman who wears colorful/loud clothes and likes Disney & Lilly Pulitzer. I find many of my likes & dislikes are changing rapidly, and I no longer want to be defined by what I wear or what those current likes/dislikes are.

I've struggled with my brand account for a while, ever since I started this journey last year and began questioning who I really was. And the answer I've arrived at? Whoever the hell I want to be. And if that changes on a daily basis, that's ok. I’m still figuring it out, honestly, and I will forever remain outside of the pastry box.

If I want to dress like a piƱata one day in fluorescent pink fringe and wear lollipop earrings, I can. And if I want to parade around downtown the next day in a pair of sweats and an oversized hoodie, I can. If I want to obsess over Disney culture for a hot minute and then decide I'm not into it as much anymore a week later, that's totally fine. I am flow. I am change. I am allowed to be more than what people perceive me to be on a screen. I have too many interests, hobbies, and likes to even attempt to define an identity.

On Demi Lovato's podcast 4D, in an episode with Glennon Doyle, she said, "It's not about where you land, it's about where you learn to fly; and because we are so taught to land on a certain identity for ourselves, we don't embrace the fact that we're ever-changing, ever-evolving people. And the things we want, the things we need, they change over time. So how are we supposed to predict that we're going to stick to one identity for the rest of our lives?"

To which Glennon replied, "All I know about my life is that I keep changing." 

So I'm choosing to align instead with an acronym for my brand:

I have and always will be a creator, but I'm done feeling like I need to "perform" for the masses, constantly trying to one-up something or follow trends to be "seen" by an algorithm that doesn't give a shit about me, and I'm choosing to embody more confidence around this and see myself and post/share/create what I want, when I want. I'm not doing this for fame or fortune. I'm doing this for fulfillment. I create simply because I must - because it's just part of who I am. The fact that what I create can inspire, entertain, or help others in some way is just...well, icing on the cake (yes, there will still be plenty of puns & wry humor to go around)! Serving others in some way by serving up slices of knowledge, empowerment, inspiration, or art is ultimately what I feel called to do - to simply share and help improve someone else's life in some way.

This has been most evident in my writing venture over on @mrg.writes. Writing is my passion and what ultimately led me to create Cake After Midnight in the first place - I needed somewhere for all my jumbled thoughts to land. Everything else unfolded from there, pairing photography and art with my words. And now I feel like I've come full circle, jump starting my writing account as a soft landing for my poetry (currently working on a poetry anthology!) Creating just comes natural to me, but confidence has taken years to cultivate. Putting yourself out there is hard but for me, it's necessary for the growth I desire. 

For the longest time, I had a scarcity mindset. I felt small. I thought small. I played small. And that was all reflected back to me in so many ways. Life is all just one giant mirror, reflecting back to us how we feel and what we project.

Have you ever wondered why you keep attracting "those kinds" of guys? The losers or the ones who just don't treat you right? It's because you don't think enough of yourself (at least on a subconscious level) to attract what you truly desire. This takes a ton of inner-work (hello, therapy!), and it's work that is never truly done. There's always something we can be working on in regards to ourselves. But by being open to the possibilities of more, of owning your power, taking a hard look at yourself and knowing (or cultivating, in my case) your worth, you can shift into an abundance mindset.

This is HUGE and opens so many doors. It truly has changed the way I see the world, and that's what I want this to all be about: sharing that abundance. Everyone has the right to this - be it more peace, more joy, more happiness, more love. It's all already yours. So I hope that by sharing my journey, my mindset and what has worked for me, along with just sharing all of the wonderful things in my own life, it will inspire someone else to find and follow their own bliss.

This is and always will be one of my core values. It's who I am at a soul level. I am someone that will bend over backwards for you. I will leave you Starbucks on your doorstep when you're quarantined. I will give you an incredibly thoughtful gift (usually something I made with my own hands). I will Venmo you $5 to treat yourself when you've had a shitty day. I will listen as you dump all of your feelings on me, and I will be a shoulder for you to cry on. I get so much out of giving, and you will never be broke when you give.

Of course there is a flip-side to this - especially if you're a mom, because I'm that mom that will sit parked for two hours in the car and forgo the plans she made because her kid fell asleep on the way to said plans and needs the rest more than whatever said plans were (more on this mom business later), so don't forget to fill your cup first. But the more you fill yours, the more you can share with others. 

Kindness is key and is such a huge part of who I am. I will never get tired of sharing, giving, and serving in any way I can. I've had some major revelations around this relating to my writing journey. It's become a big "why" piece of the puzzle of my life's purpose, and I can't wait to see where it takes me.

Finally, there's the last piece.

Who wouldn't want more ease & flow in their life? Ultimately, this has been a key theme in my life and a very hard lesson I've had to learn. It sounds so contradictory when I say that. How could "ease" be hard?

For someone like me, who used to have this intense need to control everything around me (learned limiting beliefs coming at ya!), ease did not come easily. And don't even get me started on covid. That's what got me into this mess in the first place, but thank God it did.

Had 2020 not unfolded the way it did, I would be singing a very different tune right now. Everything happens for a reason. Everything. Now, instead of trying to hold on with a white-knuckle grip to every situation, outcome, and decision, I surrender. I let it fucking go because without the surrender, you're just swimming upstream and you'll suffer way more than you need to. Piece of CAKE, right?

So hi, hello, it's a new day and a new me, and quite honestly, I know you all think you know me, but you have no idea. Big things are coming, and I can't wait to share.

This is where I make a Swift exit (puns as promised) and drop some Taylor lyrics, because it pretty much sums up the next steps for me:

Post a Comment

Latest Instagrams

© Cake After Midnight. Design by FCD.