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Sunday, February 7, 2016

Update

I'm BAAAAAACCCCCCKKKKKKK...

I can't believe it's almost five months since I've done a blog post for this site. 5 months. WOW.

Don't worry... I've been writing. But when you're sending in submissions and saving all your best ideas for a slightly larger audience, the piddly personal blog tends to sit on the back burner. With that being said... I LOVE I AM THAT GIRL!!! I have thoroughly enjoyed writing every single piece I have written for them. I am so proud of the work that I have put in there, and I know that writing for them has helped me immensely in developing this craft.

Since I've written last many things have happened. I'll fill you in below:

1. I turned 29 (and that is where the conversation ends)
2. The 3rd Anniversary of Avery's passing occurred late in October. (I usually function horribly for about a month each year at this time)
3. We celebrated another amazing Turkey Bowl with the Gillette family (our epic Thanksgiving tradition)
4. I coached my first EVER State All Around Champion (such a proud moment)
5. We celebrated our first Christmas with a sibling missing, which signified we are really growing up and moving on (Abby was off adventuring with her boyfriend's family in Chile)
6. I took on a role within the IATG local chapter program that I absolutely love (those girls give me so much joy)
7. I was approached by the National Eating Disorder Information Centre in Canada to write another article for their blog (which I am incredibly honored to do)
8. Our gymnastics team has gotten off to an incredible start to the season. We only have 3 meets left before conference!!!!

There are so many more updates, and I'll write on them as I see fit. I just wanted to pop in and say I have not disappeared... and shit's about to get real.

:)

Love True,
Allison

Extraordianary

This post was originally published at www.iamthatgirl.com


"You are profoundly and utterly extraordinary."
-Alexis Jones

My heart claps incredibly loud reading these words (Disclaimer: the term "heartclap" is a signature phrase in the IATG community used when something truly resonates deep within your soul). The words of a woman who has, without ever meeting me or knowing anything about me, completely reshaped the image I have of myself. I did not know confidence like this existed for me. I knew it existed of course, I just wasn't aware it was something I could manifest within myself. That is, until I stumbled across the I AM THAT GIRL phenomenon sweeping this nation.

I had friends who were beautiful, intelligent, witty, confident fire crackers and I was JEALOUS. I remember wishing that I was more like THAT GIRL, even though there were a lot of girls in my life whose qualities I lusted after. I wished I had THAT GIRL's confidence, or THAT GIRL's athleticism. My roommates were all THAT GIRL to me because they were brilliant, beautiful and had incredible senses of humor.

Everyone loves THAT GIRL because she exhibits all of these incredible qualities. She's strong without appearing over confident, she's loving without seeming over bearing, she's beautiful on the outside without knowing it and she's beautiful on the inside with the most selfless heart.

My entire life I knew girls like this and secretly looked up to them. I always wished, with my whole heart, that I could be just like THAT GIRL.

When I found Alexis Jones and the I AM THAT GIRL community, I bought her book immediately and messages like this started flooding through my heart:

"To be 'that girl' just means you're going to give life your best shot, that you're not going to make excuses or justifications, that you're going to go for it, whatever that means for you. It also means you're going to be an example of true beauty in the world and encourage the same for all the other women in your life. Being 'that girl' means you are a constant work in progress-- you're willing to be vulnerable, flawed, and compassionate and are someone who stumbles and falls but isn't afraid to admit her shortcomings in the midst of her magnificence."

That's when I started thinking about all of those girls who I had admired for being THAT GIRL in my life. I had never felt like THAT GIRL. I had never assumed I'd be worthy of the same kind of admiration I had been feeling for my rockstar friends. But reading Alexis' words about what truly defined THAT GIRL gave me a strange sense of enlightenment.

I'm giving life my best shot. I'm living life inexcusably, and going after my dreams same as the next girl. I love with my whole heart and acknowledge the fact that imperfection is the most beautiful expression of womanhood. Coming to the realization that being a "work in progress" is okay was completely liberating for me. I had always had this idealized vision of who I could be when I become that perfect version of myself. But through my involvement in this incredibly inspiring community I've realized that embracing exactly who I am NOW is the most perfect display of grace.

I AM THAT GIRL. It may have taken me 27 years to figure that out, but I have. All of those other girls... they are THAT GIRL too, but so am I, and I am finally at a place in my life where I can appreciate that my sense of humor, my athleticism, my beauty, my brains and my confidence are what make me, ME! They are unique to my own self and yours are unique to YOU!

It's great to have role models, or people you admire. But inn admiring all of your idols don't lose sight of what makes you THAT GIRL, because that's exactly what you are. Embrace all of your Beauty-full... because there's a lot of it within you.