I Am So Much More

In a Rapunzel frame at Shanghai Disneyland

I was able to go to Shanghai Disneyland which was wonderful.

Knowing limits is good. I need to remember that I do not have the superpower of speed to get ready for the day in five minutes. Nor can anyone read minds. We cannot fly, breathe under water, live without food or water, etc.  Limits can be helpful.

However, they can also be a hinder. So many times, I have let limits on myself – whether inflicted by me or others – that have hurt me. There were things that I was and wasn’t, limits set and dreams shattered.

This past year has shown me that I am more than my limitations. I need to stop living bound to my past or my struggles.

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Disney College Program: Aloha!

This gallery contains 8 photos.

Originally posted on It's A Great Blog After All:
Well everyone, you are looking at the newest Walt Disney Merchantainment Cast Member at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort! Let’s just say I was a little more than thrilled to find out my work location. I was nervous to find out where I would be working. Considering I have…

Listaliciousness: Walking on Water, Sherlock Theme Park, and Animals in Heaven

Swans on St. Croix

Swans on the St. Croix River outside my house

Have you ever felt both guilty about not serving people more and hurt because no one cares for you as much as you do for them? This has plagued me for much of my life but was especially difficult today. I long to be selfless, but being overlooked or taken advantage of stings.

On to cheerier matters, here are my weekly links. Art, nature, and England seemed to be the main themes. Perhaps that is not so hard to believe seeing how much I love all of those topics. Enjoy!
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Being a Hopeful Romantic

My family all rolled their eyes and laughed when I announced yesterday that I am a romantic soul. “We always knew that,” they claimed. Strangely enough, it was I who forgot that part of myself. Not until the show I am in started did I realize how deeply embedded that is as part of my personality.

Being a romantic (I hate putting the word “hopeless” in front of that word) does not mean that I am obsessed with relationships or crushes. Instead, I long for something deeper, more passionate, and bigger than myself. Adventure, creativity, beauty, and joy are just a few of the traits that are important to me.

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Updated Bucket List

Hot air balloon

The hot air balloon ride that I went on back in September at my church’s festival.

Last June, I blogged my bucket list. For a while, one of my writing ideas was updating this list. So much has happened in the past year. Realizing what I have accomplished and what dreams have been added to my goals is important for me.

Looking back actually made me very inspired and hopeful. I accomplished more than I ever dreamed that I would in the past year and several months. Riding a hot air balloon, going to Oxford, a (short) relationship, returning to theater – it has been a huge year. I look forward to thinking back in 2015 and seeing my progress once again.

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Boarding the Plane Tonight

In front of apple tree

In front of apple tree at my MN school

Tonight, I will be taking off to study at Oxford for a month. This fact has not fully sunk in yet. Will I really be living out this dream? What if I fail? How can I manage without my family or caregivers?

Nervousness is mixed with excitement. One moment, I feel like screaming for joy while I want to die the next from absolute terror. What if I get lost? What if I fall in love? What if my GPA drops? What if everyone hates me? What if I find a lifelong friend? Questions keep swirling through my head.

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Coping Skill #46. Seeking a Thrill


Playing on some climbing ropes with Mario

Sometimes, you just need to do something thrilling, take a risk and go crazy. Living safely sometimes becomes mundane and draining. There are times when I long for adventure – to explore new lands, race across uncharted plains, soar above the earth, and break out of my anxiety.

However, finding safe ways to find a thrill can be difficult. Harming yourself is never a healthy option and neither is hurting anyone else. That might seem obvious, but if you eliminate those two elements, taking a risk becomes more difficult.

So is it possible to use searching for a thrill as a coping skill? Can this be a positive thing that helps you along in your recovery?

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Here I Come, Oxford!

Me in front of the House of Parliament last May

Me in front of the House of Parliament last May

Last May, I took a trip with my mother to London.  Being abroad for the first time in the land of my dreams was one of the best experiences of my life.  After leaving, I longed to return and looked for a reason to do so.

Now, I am excited to announce that I am going to be studying abroad at Oxford this May and June!  When I received notification that I was accepted into the program, my heart nearly stopped.  Who would have imagined that the girl who could barely walk from malnutrition, received joy only from etching lines into her skin, could not socialize with anyone, and burst into tears at the thought of leaving home would be studying across the ocean?

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Seven Words

Recently, theempathyqueen posted about reducing one’s beliefs to seven words.  This concept fascinated me.  If I had to choose only a few words to sum up my entire life and the world around me, what would I choose?  Thankfully, we humans do not need to do that.  There are millions of words and expressions to explain how we view things.  However, focusing on the seven main ones is an intriguing prospect.  Plus I love working with and learning about words (as the video for today proves).  Thus, this post will sum up my priorities and deep-held values.  If you would like to share yours in a post or comment, that would be amazing.

  1. Hope – Without this, nothing has a purpose.  Although I struggle to find this bright light, clinging to it has pulled me out of dark places.  It also motivates me to care for others.  No matter who you are, there is hope for a beautiful future for you. Continue reading

Recovery in the Media: #16. Nim’s Island

Nim's Island

Both light-hearted and inspiring, this movie offers a honest look at agoraphobia.

16. Nim’s Island

When I decided to watch this movie, I did not expect to relate to a character’s struggle with social anxiety.  However, I found that this movie had a fairly accurate and inspiration portrayal of agoraphobia.  Since many people deal with anxiety on different levels, this film can be helpful to watch.  Seeing it can help one to learn more about their own illness and that of others.

Synopsis:  Despite being stranded alone on an island, Nim and her father Jack live a happy life.  Imaginative and playful, Nim loves adventures and reads many books about Alex Rover, the world’s greatest explorer.  A scientist, Jack decides to go out to sea to study a unique plankton.  Somewhat reluctantly, he leaves his daughter alone with a radio for contact.  When they lose connection with each other, Nim begins to panic.  Hopeful, she contacts Alex Rover not knowing that the author is a woman with agoraphobia.  Will Alexandra be able to face her fears to help?  What will happen to Nim and her father?  When our heroes fail us, what do we do?

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