Change.

Hi friends,

I know it’s been a minute. I am sorry. Every time I attempt to work on a post or even think about working on one, I would get discouraged or sidetracked. Holiday season, work, amongst personal changes have sort of taken over. It’s a mixture of an artistic slump and a life slump. But if you follow me, you do know that this blog means alot to me, and I always come back no matter how long I’ve been away. Because in my heart…I’m a writer and I am always writing a story in my head. So I’m going to hit you with a little emotional rant of sorts.

***************

Change.

Why is it that word scares us so?

What about it instills that fear in us?

Unfamiliarity.

Insecurity.

Loss of control.

Why is it that anytime you get comfortable in your day to day…life has a way of just throwing a pie right in your face?

I love pie, but not change. (lol)

The intelligent, rational side of me understands that change is part of the natural progression of life.

It’s not only predetermined to happen, it has to.

What’s that saying?

You can’t look backward, only forward.

It feels like you blink and you miss it.

I have no idea how time escaped me.

I feel like I’ve always said…when I grow up I want to do this and be that and live here…

And yet then I woke up and realized I’m 25 and still trying to get my life together.

But then there’s this…

I think what gets me most is when it all happens at once.

All the change hits you and your not as ready as you thought you were.

I’ve always been a- dance to the beat of my own drum kid.

I never liked to do things just to do them.

They needed to be backed by an emotion or a need.

My heart had to sit with it, for a while, before a decision was made.

And I am still that way.

Risk taker isn’t a word I’d use to describe myself.

However, as part of my discovery into myself and my self growth, I’ve learned that risk taking is how you get places.

And so I’ve been practicing just that.

That realization.

That’s when I want to run…far…away…away from everyone and everything and just be.

Be safe and in my comfort zone.

Last year I felt really inspired and worked on alot of self-growth.

This year- felt a little less inspiring.

Not in the sense that I wasn’t happy, or enjoying life.

Just in the sense that life just kind of flew by.

I guess it’s not so bad that I’m busy.

I struggled for so long to find work, that I am very happy and humbled to be employed and actually enjoying what I do, even if it’s not a lifelong career, I am learning about myself and what I am capable of.

But as the year ends and the New Year will soon be rolling in, we are conditioned to reflect on our lives over the past year.

And mine, I gotta say is kind of a blur.

Good, happy, exciting things happened, and are still happening, but I find myself a little stuck.

I feel like I’m just going through the motions each day.

There’s a routine and I’m ok with it, but now my thoughts of the future and where I’m going next are stirring up again.

Work, school, relationships with my loved ones.

Where do I want to be? What do I want to do? Who do I want to be?

I have so much I still want to work on.

How do I achieve my true happiness?

I don’t think that’s a definitive destination.

I think happiness is ever changing.

There’s that word again.

There are always going to be two sides to every coin.

Good days and bad days.

We aren’t always going to be smiling.

Sometimes we’ll cry and sometimes we’ll feel the weight of those tears in our souls.

And sometimes we take that as a sign that we are broken.

Who ever said that crying was a sign of weakness?

Shame of you.

I see your bottled up feelings, and I raise you a pack of Kleenex.

I’ve cried in front of rooms full of people, and still lived to tell the story.

Who’s tough?

There are things that I thought I would have accomplished by now in my life.

There are places I thought I’d be by now.

25 isn’t exactly the youngest number.

And it isn’t exactly all it’s cracked up to be.

I don’t know maybe it’s just the time of year that stirs up all of this.

Or maybe it’s something to think about and really figure out.

I know I will always keep striving and going, it’s just that change scares me so much.

Add anxiety, stress and certain insecurities to that and it can be crippling.

Sometimes I just wish I could go back and ask for a re-d0.

Maybe I would have done a few things differently.

But then again, I do think that this is my journey.

It’s unlike anyone else’s and it may not be perfect-

but it was meant to be mine, and no matter how scary and painful the struggles I’ve dealt with may have been, I found a way to overcome them.

And although a work in progress-

I am so much stronger because of them.

If I’ve learned anything from where I’ve been, it’s that I was born to be a success story.

And so are you.

xo

Michelle Leigh

Hang in there my fellow 20-somethings!

New Year, clean slate, make new memories.

 

-<3-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alicia Keys- No Makeup Movement

I remember hearing something stirring up about Alicia Keys starting up her own #NoMakeupCampaign a while back, and I just now recently saw it in action at the 2016 VMA’s, and can I just say…. SHE. LOOKED. FLAWLESS. RADIANT. BEAUTIFUL. It was inspiring.

GET IT GIRL.

I could have just stopped there and I would have already made my point.

But in typical rambling fashion, you know a michelleleighwrites post is never short. So let’s talk.

After seeing how amazing she looked on that red carpet, I wanted to dive into the story behind this movement. So I found and read a few articles that dug a little deeper.

Articles:

POPSUGAR

YAHOO! NEWS

The most powerful thing I found was Alicia’s essay she penned for Lena Dunham’s online feminist newsletter “LENNY,”  entitled “Time to Uncover.” Her reasons for making such a bold choice stem from her own insecurities. Like many of us women out there, including myself, we have this intense pressure we feel to live up to a standard of beauty that the media inflicts upon us from a very young age. And the older you get, the more serious the impact can feel. I used to rarely ever wear makeup. Other then if it were a holiday or special occasion, I was usually make up free all the way up until my college days. And even then, I didn’t go the whole crazy route that you see makeup artists or beauty guru’s go nowadays. Don’t get be wrong I LOVE watching those videos just as much as the next girl, and I do think makeup can be this incredible artistic expression. But sometimes I just sit back and think “How much stuff are you putting on your face?” Even personally, when I sit down to do my makeup, sure I’m more of a drugstore makeup girl, but sometimes between the concealer, and the foundation and the powder and the primer, by the time I finish, it feels like it took me forever.

Watch Alicia discuss her movement in a radio interview with HOT 97- [@ the 2:05 mark]

 

 

Ever since I started working more regularly, and having to come face to face with more people each day, I’ve started doing a regular simple makeup routine. It doesn’t take too long and I like the outcome. But I’ve felt more of that pressure to have to put makeup on lately. I have started to really feel like I have to cover up my acne scars, blemishes and under eye circles. And I used to never really feel like that. I would just wash my face, moisturize and go. What happened to that? That freedom?

In Alicia’s interview she notes that going makeup free and sporting her bare face for all the world to see has been “a beautiful challenge.” Stating that the movement is about being yourself. She emphasizes that she doesn’t want this to be “taken the wrong way,” it isn’t an anti-makeup campaign it’s just a campaign to encourage women to feel beautiful in their own skin, “to be free, to be who you are, to be yourself.” She also states that she believes in being “perfectly imperfect.”

Alicia’s words-her message, has really resonated within me and I think it’s having an impact on many people. Even though I’ve seen she’s gotten some criticism, I am a complete supporter. Her husband is as well.

Screenshot_2016-08-31-18-57-54swizz-beatz-and-alicia-keys-zoom-eecb7868-fa96-4413-8f17-2a71538efad6[1]

Alicia’s newest video-no makeup-and gorgeous.

Alicia has said that this raw real no makeup movement was inspired by a photographer who was shooting her new album artwork. The photographer wanted to shoot her as is, free of makeup, just from the gym, in a head scarf.

Screenshot_2016-08-31-18-58-54

Further explaining that the realness of her appearance will balance out with the realness in her new album.  I haven’t come across an album release date, but I will certainly be checking up on it, once it’s out!

Do your thang, Alicia. We get it. And we’re here to join. I know I am. Everything I’ve seen about her lately is filled with such beautiful messages, and inspirational good vibes. She seems so centered and happy, even though she admits to still working on things, aren’t we all? There is so much positivity she exudes that it’s beautiful to watch and it inspires. There’s a rich realness there and it’s freakin awesome that she’s from New York too!

 

*I do not take any credit for any music, images, videos used.*

-<3-

 

 

 

 

Shhh…I secretly wanted to be Britney Spears

**CONFESSION TIME**

10 “Shallow” Reasons why I wanted to be Britney Spears when I was younger… (not my brightest moment i admit…) But I’ll always have a soft spot for the Brit Brit.

1. The signature Britney Hair Flip.

tumblr_lutjyeHHO51qlrn9t

so brit giphy

 

 

 

 

 

2. And how her hair; even when messy, still looked good.

tumblr_mxk7kkvaA01r3ty02o1_500

3. The Britney Strut.

tumblr_m66z52k8ri1qa8979 britney-spears-boys-live-o

 

 

 

 

 

4. Crossroads (it was kinda bad, but kinda really good too).

198990 britcross2001

tumblr_ldesn6Rzne1qbcfc7o1_r1_500

5. Her Outfits…

1309017_10-419x615

The I don’t know why…but i liked it!

britney rockin

The Leather (post Justin)

45c6a510f5f0fb35f15e0735b83f8b5a

The Lace (during Justin)

 

6. Her “Stronger” Video Outfit…I was was strangely obsessed.

tumblr_lnmpbqDuXf1qm2lj8o1_500

britneyspears-stronger

7. Her pinstripe suit pants from “Me Against the Music” (yes i bought a pair and wore them on new years eve, cuz I’m cool!)

Me+Against+The+Music

7bfad5dc726875e659700b5446747254

8. Slave for you video. Enough said.

*Where every guy wanted to be with her, and every girl wanted to BE her.

No just me? ok then (but you’re lying to yourself…) 😉

 

9. This performance…

“Lonely”

 

 

10. Her boyfriend was well…him

File britney-justin-timberlake-spears

 

 

12241__brit_justin_l

Britney girl, no matter what, I got you. I’m a fan.

6334_1218388101036_5834392_n

So secrets out! I wanted to be Britney Spears when I was a kid, (and maybe even when I was a teen too) for all the reasons listed above and more, (like those ridiculously high platform sneakers and flip flops she used to wear, but I couldn’t because I was already taller then everyone in my 5th grade class hahaha)

**Spoiler Alert: I grew into my height and eventually everyone else caught up**

Let’s get deep….The point is we all have things we wish we could change about ourselves, I’m sure Britney herself has things she would change about herself. As we grow up we idolize people we think are perfect. But the more we grow the more we understand everyone has flaws and it’s ok to accept them. It’s always nice to look up to people and often times those people tend to be celebrities with money and fame. But I’ve learned that idolizing the version of them that you think is perfect can cause you to have a distorted vision of yourself and others. So I’ve learned to admire instead of idolize. Respect talent but more importantly value good character. This lesson has allowed me to gain suitable inspiration without losing who I am as a person.

So I’m happy to say that this little girl, is my idol 😉

Me circa 1997 ish?

Me circa 1997 ish?

 The moral of this story…

Be Yourself.

-<3-