Pink Paw Print

Friday, April 22, 2016

Things I'm Trying To Accept

So, I've been super M.I.A. recently, and here's why. I'm going to be honest and tell you straight up right now that at first, this is not a happy post, and even though my cursor says "Think Happy," sometimes, you just need to admit when you have been sad. Sometimes, it's okay not to be happy. It's okay to be struggling, and it's okay to share this with others. You don't have to keep it all in. You can share. HOWEVERRRR because I do always love looking on the bright side, the end will be happy! <3


1. First, I gave up social media for a while and it really made such a difference. The world is so beautiful when you put your phone down. Sometimes, it's so nice to just look at beautiful scenes rather than attempt to capture them for Instagram or Snapchat. Sometimes, it's nice to just take everything in. The grass really is not a lot greener on the other side of your iPhone, so why don't you put it down? Why don't you view the grass not from behind a screen, but from behind absolutely nothing at all? Unless you wear glasses :p, that is! I've realized my blog is never going to be one of those ones that everyone knows about and that is fine - a tighter-knit group of supporters means more to mean than that. I've accepted this and I will write about the things that I want to say, rather than what I think others would want. Your true "tribe" of followers will follow you, no matter what, because they can see the good in you, despite what society demands from a blog (not too personal, tons of beautiful fashion pictures, lots and lots of giveaways for readers, etc.)

2. Anyway, taking the time away from social media helped me to become more in tune with myself. I had much more time for introspection, and I realized that I'm really deeply heartbroken about my most recent ex-boyfriend. Even though this is the path that life has chosen for me, and I know I must eventually accept it and come to terms with it, I am so hurt and sad and mad about how things wound up. No matter how much we want life to work out the way we want it to, life often has other plans for us - even if it goes down with us metaphorically kicking and screaming against it. It can leave you feeling broken, hurt, so incredibly sad and confused - and you find yourself just going through the motions, just going into "survival mode" and trying to keep up because life doesn't stop moving just because you feel like you were punched right in the heart. I feel ashamed often because I wish I didn't still feel so heartbroken, but I do feel bad - very bad. The heart can take a long time to heal, to accept the things you wish weren't the case. But we shouldn't feel guilty for taking a while to feel bad. We shouldn't have to rush things. I also am reflecting back on the past four years and am feeling pretty bad about other personal issues, friends family, etc. but I'm not going to get into details here. Mainly commuting to school now makes a hugely positive difference in my mood: being stuck on the college campus was making me feel pretty down in the dumps because I just want to get away and forget everything so badly. The school is fine and all for many people; I just need to move on to the next chapter in my life, for my mental health's sake. I want to run far, far away from my past and start anew. Which is great, because that's exactly what I'll be doing come this fall (well, technically the summer when I move down!) However, my dog is really really old and not very healthy so spending as much time with him as possible before I move down south for grad school is key. I love just petting him after his coughing fits wind down or massaging his ears that have a lot of health issues. He's such a fuzzy little muffin-Pug and I'm so blessed to have this munchkin in my life. Sitting alone in my dorm room at school crying about how life turned out is a lot worse of an option than being home with my cuddly doggy, lmao!

3. I've realized a lot about who I am - and by that I ironically mean that even though I thought I knew who I am so well, maybe I really don't anymore. There's some pressure to have ourselves all figured out by the time either high school or college ends, and for me, maybe that's not entirely my case. Maybe I don't know really who I am very much at all. Sure, I know what things I like and what things I value, but then random life experiences happen and my views on life change and then I feel a shift where I reevaluate my viewpoints on everything, you know?? I feel like everything I've always believed are constantly shaken up and then I'm faced with the choice of either questioning what I've thought or just ignoring the learning opportunity and be stubborn. It's a lot like... politics, really: I know what my political views are, but the truth is, the reason why politics are so controversial is because it's all a matter of opinion. Facts and statistics can be woven into some form of "proof" that one school of viewpoints is the best, but at the same time, there are no real rights or wrongs. Sometimes there is no best. There can be "better," but again, better is a subjective thing unless facts are being used to try to achieve some sense of objectivity. Of course I think that the political party of which I associate myself with belonging to is "better" at framing the U.S. than the other, but ultimately these are all opinions. This election has really divided people. People I thought were my friends have written so many horrible things online belittling people of my party, merely because we do not share the same views. It's really difficult to see such hatred from people you once really really liked. I know that many people say we should focus on forgiveness and letting go, but sometimes you just need to allow yourself to feel the shock and feel the hurt... eventually forgiveness can come, but at sometime later on. Sometimes, though, forgiveness can never come for certain people after what they've said or done - and while that would be a difficult choice to make, I do argue that it's also a valid and realistic one.

4. After a slew of some digestive health issues and skin condition issues that are just not fun and pretty embarrassing, I've been told that I must cut out the vast majority of carbohydrates/(mostly refined) sugars/(most) gluten/yeast/cheeses from my diet (read: all the fun things that there are to eat.) I'm supposed to eat mainly just raw or steamed vegetables at first to "cleanse" and then I can add back in more things, even though I'll still need to avoid most starchy vegetables and some of the fruit types that are higher in sugar. For someone who loves chocolate, baked goods, pizzas, pastas, and more - I've really just been struggling to accept this. Who am I, nicknamed Brookie Cookie, if I can't even eat cookies? The gluten-free ones just don't taste the same, and besides, the whole sugar thing. I don't really want to discuss why because of the whole "yuck" factor of it, but you could view what I have as kind of like a pre-diabetes sort of thing. Let's leave it at that, for your sake! :p Pizza was my absolute favorite food but between the yeast and gluten and cheese it's no longer going to work out and this loss -even though it sounds silly- is really difficult for me because I am one of those people who really really loves food.


1. I did a LOT of researching and found an incredible new brand, Pacifica, that makes natural + vegan, cruelty-free makeup and nail polish! The nail polish is "seven free," which means that a whole bunch of nasty, toxic to your system, harmful chemicals are not present! I'm currently wearing their light pink shade and it is BEAUTIFUL. It looks just as stunning as your Essie nail polish, so no need to worry about that! I will admit that I wish there were even more colors to choose from, but over time I have no doubts that the choices will expand! *casually wiggles my pretty pink perfectly-polished fingernails for you to feast your eyes upon*

2. YOU GUYS I DID IT. I MADE A YOUTUBE CHANNEL FOR ASMR VIDEOS YESTERDAY. AND I MADE MY VERY FIRST ASMR VIDEO. AND I GOT 9 SUBSCRIBERS OVERNIGHT, AND EVEN A FEW COMMENTS TELLING ME THAT IT WAS A GOOD VIDEO AND ONE PERSON EVEN SAID THEY LIKE MY PERSONALITY *throws hands at heart dramatically* AND ONE PERSON REQUESTED A PARTICULAR TYPE OF VIDEO THEY THINK I SHOULD DO IN THE FUTURE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I really really want to share my YouTube ASMR channel's username with you (although if you follow me on Snapchat - buhhrook is my Snapchat user name - then you already know it because you guys are like my little family on there and you get special exclusive extra info ;)!<3333) but here's why I'm reluctant to: while blog readers in general are not scary stalking-type of people, unfortunately on occasion some people who watch ASMR videos get very curious in the scary stalking-type of way about the person who is relaxing them to fall asleep each night and while with you readers who know my full name and where I live, it could be a potential danger for that information to be linked to my ASMR videos. I hope you can understand. If you would like to watch my ASMR videos and know my channel name, then I will be more than happy to give it to you - but there is a promise implied on your part that you will not mention my blog in any comment on my channel because I do not want video viewers to know some of the information that my blog provides. Perhaps at a later date, this can change, but for now, I hope that you will respect these wishes of mine. If you want my YouTube ASMR channel info, email me here: with the Subject Line: "I Want To Watch Your ASMR Videos!" and I will reply with the link to my channel! :D Happy viewing, friends!!!

3. I am applying for a second part-time job because I am really kind of very broke. Now that I will be graduating from college in a few weeks (PRAISE DA LAWD, FOR REALZ.) I can no longer rely on my parents for financial help because it would be a burden for them. As y'allz know, I do freelance copy editing for Odyssey every Sunday, but I really need a secondary income that would be a more substantial portion of the income. There are two organizations that would pay me for the articles I write and I am applying to these tonight. Both seem really great in different ways: one is more of a newspaper reporting journalism style, and one is more of a feminine and modern millennial young woman style of work. If both of these work out, that would be great because then I could have THREE sources of income!

4. I highly recommend Anytime Fitness if you are looking for a gym to join. Although my college has a gym, as mentioned earlier, I need to get away, and there are two Anytime Fitness gyms near my town that are just AMAZING! The staff and gym-goers are always so friendly and encouraging, and the machines are always so clean ~*sprays you with disinfectant spray b/c I'm sassy like that*~ The other day I RAN FOR SIX MINUTES WITH ZERO KNEE PAIN. THIS IS AMAZING FOR ME. IT IS LIKE, MIRACULOUS FOR ME. After dealing with the darned knee sports injury since 2011, for the first time, I ran for six minutes without any pain. This is incredible. I am feeling so blessed and humbled by the progress. I remember in the summer of 2012 right before coming to college when I couldn't even walk from one room to the other (well, except when I had to pee I would like frickin' crawl, because peeing on the couch ain't cute, ya feel!) One day --mark my words, now-- one day, I am going to run a 5k. And it will be one of the greatest days of my entire life.

5. So even though everybody has loved Zumba for like, forever, and this has been a thing for a long time, I finally bought a workout DVD that is Zumba 101 and I'm OBSESSED! It's such a great cardio workout! Although I can practically smell armpit just from the mere thought of going to an actual class instead of just the DVD, I still consider doing Zumba at home a great, full experience and something that I plan on incorporating into my exercise routine from here on out.

6. I -finally- found a beautiful apartment to rent down south for grad school that I'll be moving into this summer. When deciding between actually living in the city of Savannah or nearby Wilmington Island, I chose Savannah just because I want to get the full effect of living right in the middle of things. I have such beautiful views from the apartment and I don't have to fight for a parking space because they are assigned -- score! I also went to Bed Bath + Beyond and my mom and I picked out the CUTEST bedding by Southern Tide, a company that makes really cute clothing/accessories/bedding. The rest of my furniture and stuff is probably going to just be Ikea/Target but I am still going to feel like such a happy princess in this apartment. The future is so bright and I can't wait to have my own (okay okay, true, it's rented so technically not my own by any means but still!) little 800 square feet to occupy in Savannah!

7. Spring cleaning is a thing! Everyone makes jokes (granted, I don't find them funny, but...) that I'm like pretty much a hoarder, and they probably have a very good point, I will reluctantly admit. Sometimes when I keep things too clean, I feel like anxious like they're gonna get all messed up eventually so why even bother to be such a neat freak for? When things are too clean it feels kinda like sterile and empty and in an odd way lonely, almost? (go ahead and psychoanalyze me if you must, but still, lmaoo!) But I realized that keeping things cleaner will help me feel better about myself in many ways so I'm going to start by donating a bunch of clothes and shoes to Goodwill - if you haven't worn the clothes in over two years, it's best to donate them to people who need them! Then, I will follow up by getting rid of makeup that is over a year old and replace it, if need be (and let's be real here... it is always definitely "need be" when it comes to an occasion to buy new makeup!! *cue sassy handflip* ahaha! :p)


So, these are the things I'm trying to accept, and where I've been recently, and the good things too. Thanks for being patient while I have been away from The Pink Lyme, and thank you so much for being loyal readers. It literally honestly means the entire world to me that you read TPL, and I am so grateful for you - yes, YOU! :D <3 Thanks for reading, and thanks for being you.

xoxo, Brooke

Monday, April 4, 2016

My New Physical + Mental Health Journey!

With the exciting new change of GRAD SCHOOL!!!! comes a lot of introspection: who have I been in college for the past four years? Who would I like to become in grad school? What aspects of myself would I like to play up, and what aspects of who I am would I like to change? (Note: you can start fresh on any given day! If you aren't satisfied with yourself at any point in your life, go get out there and change the aspects you desire to see differently!) Haven't you heard!? I'll be attending SCAD (Savannah College of Art + Design, located in Savannah, Georgia)! <---This was the hint from the photo of the southern sweet tea and the palm tree on my Instagram account that I told y'allz about! It's from when I visited the area over my spring break!

Aaaaand so, because of this major change, I need to be able to focus solely on taking care of my mental and physical health so that I will be able to become my best self for my upcoming new, two-year amazing future journey!! Let's do this together! :D <3 Tweet: Starting at this very moment, I am going to begin practicing healthy self-compassion + self-care. A major aspect of self-care that I am going to be engaging in is taking care of my mind, body, heart, + soul!

In terms of mental health, I vow to...

Get as much sleep as possible.

  • It's difficult to get good rest in a noisy dorm, but I will try my best!

Not ruminate on the things that make me sad or worried.

  • If this type of thought pops up, I will allow myself to feel upset for a little while and be self-compassionate and loving, but then I will follow up by looking on the bright side and change the thought(s) into having a new, positive twist! (i.e. - "This exam has so much material on it, oh my gosh! How overwhelming!" will become "This exam has so much material on it, oh my gosh! This seems really overwhelming! But as long as I try my best, that is the best possible outcome...(side note: nobody wants to do well without even trying, because that just leads to feeling icky over time!) and I have control over that!"

Be my own best friend.

  • Rather than being my own worst enemy -- something so many of us tend to do!

Write in a journal, almost every day.

  • Not only when I am in distress, but also when things are going well!

Keep my anxiety + occasional depression in check with talk therapy

  • It is a sign of strength + self-love to want to take good care of yourself, even if that means getting one-on-one advice from a professional source -- ain't no shame in that!

In terms of physical health, I vow to...

Cut down my sugar consumption to no more than 35g per day.

  • Even though females are not supposed to have over 25g according to Google, I've gotta be realistic here -- I love chocolate too much! Maybe later on in the year I'll get it down to 25g, but I'm not gonna push it   just yet! Also, fun fact: I used to consume over THREE TIMES this daily health limit recommendation!!! EEK!!! No more!

Engage in 30 minutes of cardio, four times a week.

  • Unless the patellar tendonitis in my knees or pretty chronically-sprained back are acting up, in which case I will cut back on the cardio, as needed!

Practice either yoga or meditation, daily.

  •  Either every morning or after my cardio workout, if I'm too sleepy first thing!

Not use bad weather as an excuse.

  • There are so many YouTube workout videos, that the whole yucky weather excuse just doesn't cut it anymore in this digital age!

Remember to lift some weights!

  • I lift about five pounds at most, and I'm 100% wholeheartedly glad about that. I don't need to get all intense about my lifting; I just desire to do a little something - and three or five pounds makes me personally happy. I'm not going to compare myself to those "let's-kick-some-@$$-today!" people at the gym who lift like, 25 pounds because I personally do not desire to do that, and that is okay!

Raspberries are one of my absolute favorite healthy foods!! What is your "go-to" snack?

This is not sponsored at all, but I think My Fitness Pal is a really really great free website + smartphone app to track your health!! This is what I will be using during my fitness + nutrition journey. It even tells you your macros, and really highly specified information! I was honestly unaware that I was consistently having fat as......*gags*...47% of my diet. My poor heart! Definitely going to be reversing this, ASAP! Add me as a friend on My Fitness Pal so we can motivate each other to get healthy + achieve our nutrition and fitness goals! My username is BSAFFERM :)

What are your fitness + nutrition + health goals? Let's keep each other on track! Go ahead and tell me some mental + physical health vows!
xoxo, Brooke

Sunday, April 3, 2016

How to Make Difficult Decisions

Now, I'll be the first one to admit that having to make decisions (although I love having the autonomy, power + control that comes along with making decisions) makes me very, very anxious! Multiply these nervous feelings by x103829183728387462193 when the decision to be made is a "real" difficult one. Sometimes just choosing where to eat lunch or even what to order once I decide where can feel like a complicated choice: should I be healthy for a change? How much sugar have I already consumed today, because I really need to cut back? Do I need more vegetables + fiber today? Holy shiz, I haven't eaten fruit in almost an entire WEEK! And on, and on, and on.

With all of this being said, there are ways to help you make decisions if you are anything like myself!
Here are three that are my general "go-to's":

1. Talk about it
Talking to a trusted friend or family member or therapist can really help you view your predicament from new angles. Having third-party opinions, whether slightly biased or not, can still encourage you to look at your situation from perspectives you might not have considered prior to their advice. The more you talk about something, you are literally forcing yourself to generate new ideas about the matter - nobody's about to repeat the same thing over + over again! Just be careful not to venture into "unhealthy rumination" territory; although many people associate rumination with obsessive thinking, it can also result in obsessive discussing! There are so many beautiful things in the world with which you can fill your mind - I recommend this :p !

2. Write about it
Blogging, for me, is a great way to figure out how I'm really feeling about an issue, even more so than maybe I would if I hadn't written an entire post on the matter at hand, whatever it may be. If you do not write a blog, then I suggest buying a journal... or three! Hey, honestly, I feel creatively stuck sometimes when I have to write in the same journal or notebook day after day - the different colors and covers and textures and everything combined inspire me in different ways. You can bet that right now I have about four different journals that I write in whenever the inspiration strikes me to use any particular one. Journaling is great if you are concerned and preoccupied with external judgment from others who may read your thoughts + feelings and leave comments on them. Personally, something I wish I didn't do, but I have found that it's just a major element of human nature, is to seek validation of my own personal choices from others. This is part of the reason why I find blogging rewarding: what I write is able to resonate with people, and hopefully my words can help + inspire others. Although the subjects written about in journaling are highly personal, and I'd argue even more so for me than blogging topics usually are, with a blog you have the ability to change other people's lives for the better! Unless you publish your journals one day... hehehe! #Ideas

3. Think about it
Letting yourself consider the decision options that you can select from without passing judgment upon yourself for which one, deep down, you really think you want to make is a very important step in actually making a decision! Don't self-loathe if you find yourself leaning more towards on of the options that others have guided you against, either. Sometimes, oddly enough, even the people who know you best, just --for whatever reason-- don't know what is best for you, even if they have done so in the past + claim to do so, presently. The thing about being humans is that we are constantly in a state of evolving + growing + changing - and this is all such a beautiful thing. Each and every day shapes + forms us into a daily brand-new version of ourselves. We are never the same person two days in a row -- really think about that for a second! It is okay to change your mind a million and one times, despite what anyone says. We do not owe anybody a constant state of mind - because this is how one's mind grows stagnant. HOWEVER!!! there is at least one exception to this highly general rule, and what comes to mind is romance! I'd say that we owe romantic partners unwavering affection + love, wouldn't you!?

One of the ways to make decisions is to grab some (decaf!) coffee, a notebook/journal, a pen, + some alone time!

How do you go about making difficult decisions?
xoxo, Brooke