Little Did They Know

When it was too cold to play soccer outside at recess (it had to be pretty damn cold) I’d slip through the door of my school library. I’d read chapter after chapter and dread the bell that meant it was time to return to our studies. Little did they know I had found my own curriculum.

It’s a lot harder to read as an adult because we don’t get recess we get breaks. And I don’t know about you, but I spend a lot of my breaks paying bills, trying to get that coffee stain out of my sweater, and writing out grocery lists (thrilling, I know)

But it’s my favorite time of the year to curl up with a book in bed. That’s what sweater weather is for, isn’t it? Sundays & snow storms give me no other option than to dedicate my day to literature. I hope you are able to do the same. What are some of your favorite books that have had an impact on your life? Share with me, I’m always looking for a new read :)

Watch this quick & beautiful video & then hop on over to Thought Catalog to read this article about Dating a Girl Who Reads The News 

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Changing My Armor

I learn new things about myself everyday but there is one thing I have always known for sure: I love to love. And there was a point in my life where I was convinced my journey was focused around just that. Audrey Hepburn put it perfectly, “I was born with an enormous need for affection and a terrible need to give it.

I found myself devoting my energy to the unconditional love that existed within. To the passion that forms a fist in your heart that you just can’t shake. To the moments that took my breath away and the can’t eat, can’t sleep, can’t think kind of love that I believed so deeply in.

And to my surprise it lasted — but that chapter was short and filled with many aches, pains and superficial expectations. I quickly realized that love is not a fairytale and it is not always ideal. Yup, girlfriend grew up. Timing can be wrong, people run off, and love fades out as quickly as it comes in. And after a year or so I decided that I was okay with that. I felt at peace with the fact that some good things end so that beautiful things can begin, that heartbreak is inevitable and life must go on. And so I did, which was the best, and only, decision I had.

There is a quote that I read years ago that really resonates with me lately that I’d like to share with you.

“Be soft. Do not let the world make you hard. Do not let pain make you hate. Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness. Take pride that even though the rest of the world may disagree, you still believe it to be a beautiful place.” -Kurt Vonnegut

It brings up the question that I have asked myself each night before I close my eyes for the last 3 months: At what point did I choose to wake up and dress myself in an invisible armor simply to protect myself from wars that had not even begun?

A close friend and I sat down last week and he told me that if I need to work on one thing it is this: not going into a conversation or situation with a “loaded gun”. As a single independent woman I feel as though that is my new-found gut instinct. I feel defensive when it isn’t necessary. My nerves turn into sharp thorns that make me appear to be hard to approach. But the truth is that I feel fear. I fear the pain that I once felt because I chose to love. Because I chose to let myself be vulnerable, open, and willing to fall without anyone guaranteeing to be there.

But when did I lose my desire to “kill em’ with kindness” rather than with hateful words? To be silly and sweet, to gain trust by my actions, and to bond over a basic respect and understanding of one another.

I believe the woman/man who loves with no limit is the one who is lovable. The first to grab the others hand is the one that feels the spark many of us seek. And so that is what I would like to work on. I want to regain my tenderness, open up to the unknown, and be willing to take the jump into the divine. Because there is nothing more powerful than giving a love that you once questioned, a kiss that was once so sweet, and the trust that was often withheld.

Here’s to a new kind of love and a change in armor.

xoxo, Bailey Mikell

You Will Be Stronger

You had me second guess myself so many times that I’d be surprised to find a single doubt within if you asked me to look today. You led me astray more times than I chose to count. I fell flat on my face but I didn’t ever give up. My phone bill teetered towards overage charges for the first time since high school; I sobbed to my mum so many times our plan couldn’t keep up, yet somehow she always did. It’s been since I said farewell to my childhood that my lips have trembled like they did during this month. I crumbled in situations that I’d usually be holding down.

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And sometimes, if the stars aligned just right, I’d be at the end of a gut-wrenching day doing my best to catch my breath & I would suddenly find myself in an opulent moment. After letting those sporadic moments of bliss amongst blur confuse me for a while, I started using them as fuel: I knew if I consistently fought until I couldn’t anymore I’d start to see results. Slowly but surely, things began making sense.

April, I know we didn’t always see eye to eye, but our 30 days of trial & error together splashed color on my white walls & infused a deep appreciation within. Thank you for kicking me in the ass even though I was usually still trying to get up from the last time. And, thank you for teaching me how to be strong even when I am alone. I reached out to my incredible loved ones a lot, to say the least, but whenever a new situation arose I had to learn to adjust (still learning how)

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I guess I’ve decided that a firm reality check isn’t always the sweetest cup of tea, but it sure does make a pretty little promise — that this too shall pass, and when it does, you will be stronger. 

All my love until we meet again next year, xoxo, your little warrior

“April hath put a spirit of youth in everything.” (Sonnet XCVIII) -William Shakespeare

Didn’t feel a drop

Today I’d like to sit beneath an umbrella and kiss until the rain stops; Then we can go inside & laugh about how we didn’t feel a drop. How special is it to have someone to do such silly things with and not have it feel silly at all.

I love you Andy. I can’t wait for you to come home.

All my love, Honey 

Refreshed & Ready

“Keep your face always toward the sunshine and the shadows will fall behind you.”

Walt Whitman

After a beautiful weekend I feel refreshed & ready to put all of my energy towards growing as an individual. This week I have plenty to do with very little time, bare with me if I tend to dip in & out during the madness. Can’t wait to catch up on my daily reads. I always miss reading all of your posts when things get busy.

All my love, Bee

Web To Book

I have so many beautiful women in my life. Everyday I think to myself, ‘Really? Each of them seem to shine just a bit more then the day before.

One of those girls is the fabulous Elana. She and I think so much alike it’s crazy. I truly admire her inner & outer beauty. Elana has supported my passion for writing since day one. Often her ‘likes’ and comments make it all worth it. Earlier this week she gave me the idea to print out my favorite posts from Commander In Chic to compile a book. It would not be a book with chapters – I imagine it being something you would keep on your coffee table or desk.

I’d like it to be something you could grab for a quick dose of daily inspiration & self empowerment. This is something that is clearly in the beginning stages, but I think that picking the best posts on each anniversary of CIC would be perfect. So the first book would be called “Commander In Chic: One”

If you have a favorite post that hits close to home or inspired you more then usual I would love to hear about it. I will start compiling these posts and begin the creation of this book. Would it be something you would consider purchasing? March 20th will be ‘Commander In Chics’ birthday! This journey has been miraculous, and I would not have shared it with anyone but you. Thank you…

Ps. Check out Elana’s Photography – She does an incredible job & will bring the beauty you never knew existed to the surface.

To The Point About Fine Print

Pardon Johns french, he’s just so damn uncouth sometimes… 

“If you go home with somebody, and they don’t have books, don’t fuc*’em!”
― John Waters

Good morning little birds, I hope you went to bed with a dream & woke up with a purpose (& a new chapter to dive into, of course) XOXO