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Transformation: The Messy Stuff that Happens Before You Become a Butterfly

by Lisa on February 5, 2013

I was thinking a lot about the idea of transformation today (well, actually, I’ve been thinking about it pretty steadily since 2003, almost always claiming to be in limbo in some way), and my Mom sent me a link to a Dear Sugar column that had an awesome description of transformation in it (I heart Sugar/Cheryl Strayed—buy her book, you’ll love it. Tiny Beautiful Things).

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not despairing over here—I just thought this summed up a lot of what transformation is in the stripped down non-ego real way (not the drama queen wrapped up in being a victim way).

I have had so much fun in the last week—with my family (k’s bday dinners), with new friends (bowling, hiking, being outside, eating out), by myself (walking…a lot), in yoga class… but I do need to focus more on the things I am here to do on my California Sabbatical. What have I realized? It’s way easier (but also more annoying) when someone else tells you what to do and gives you deadlines. I have this issue of having so many ideas (my super power is being the Idea Queen), but not knowing on which thing I should focus my energy. 

How’d I deal with it? LISTS. Lots of LISTS. Also, thinking of all the amazing things about my life.

This is a peek into my apartment. Yes, I put stickers on my wall! And I love these guys... although there's one I'd love to reposition a bit and I can't because although they are removable, they are not reusable. I'll show you the rest of the place soon---I was waiting till I had everything "done" but I don't know when that's going to happen. I love this apartment so much and all the stuff I have in it--there's something so satisfying about that!

I found a juice bar called Nektar that sells a 32oz green juice for $8.50!!! It is no longer financially responsible for me to make my own juice...there's no way I could make it at home for that cheap. Also, yay for thumbholes when it's 50 degrees out (and sorry to my family who is freezing in NY while I merely have to put on a sweatshirt to go outside!)

It has been quite warm most days, in the 70s, and my friend Pilar and her husband and I met to take some pics for the program Pilar and I are developing---her handstand is way more impressive at 33 weeks pregnant!

Another day in paradise...

An evening walk...

In my 'hood, view of the Santa Monica Pier at night.

It's even crowded on Sunday evenings, but nothing like summer or during the holidays. When I need a little uplifting, I walk down the Promenade. It has a great energy, and I really like (some of) the street performers.

If I were to reflect on transformation a little more, in relation to what my life looks like these days, I’d notice a huge change, visually, compared to one year ago. Not only did I chop my hair and get stronger and find my groove with eating, but I physically moved across the country and have a home that I love. Plus, I’m warm. And you can’t beat that (in my book).

This transformation of my life is positive—it feels positive, it looks positive. I am (mostly) enjoying it. Especially when I remind myself that I just need to look a step or two in front of me and do what feels right… it’s not necessary to see where I’ll end up or what the exact journey will be (no matter if that would feel really comforting to know sometimes!).

Have you ever transformed yourself or your life into something completely new and different? 

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  • Kyle

    Would the journey be as much fun if we knew exactly where we’d end up anyway?

    Also, what I’m getting out of this (after seeing Pilar’s photo on FB) is that I need to get my handstand down before moving to California. ;)

  • Lori and Michelle

    awesome that you found a juice place!! as much as I love fresh juice, I sure would like someone else to do it for me :) I wish I was able to come hang out with you when I was in Cali, but my trips are always work related.


  • lindsay cotter

    i can tell friend. YOu have a glow, a grow glow. Growing into your confidence. I loved seeing your journey

  • The Candid RD

    You look amazing! Seriously. The transformation is doing something wonderful :) I love those birds on your wall too, very peaceful.
    I have been slowly transforming into someone who is not as rigid. Slowly but surely, I’m being less strict with myself and others. I like how I feel, it’s working….

  • Melissa C

    Lisa, you look amazing! I can tell you have transformed in a positive way since I met you last year. It seems to me like you have found your happy place in California :) That juice looks amazing! Wish there was a place around Rochester that had yummy juice like yours!

  • meri

    wow- you look really great and healthy. whatever you’re doing, it’s working :) Love the wall art too!

  • Jess

    Ohhh I DIG this description of transformation!! Right ON — it is all the ‘messy’ stuff in the midst of transforming, it’s actually beautiful and not ugly at all if you ask me. I LOVE LOVE LOVE where you are, both physically, mentally and soulfully, you are just blooming and it makes me so happy for you friend. LOVE! PS all these warm weather pics are making me SO JEALOUS as we head into a weekend of um, 30+ inches of snow forecast?? I’m moving!! LOL

  • Lisakthrives

    We’ll all perfect our handstands together… outside. on the beach.

    On Tue 05/02/13 21:11 , “Disqus” sent:

  • laury (the fitness dish)

    I absolutely LOVE that and may just have to read it in my yoga class this weekend! You look amazing, Cali really suits you…even though you always look great!

    I wanted to talk to you about oxalates in green smoothies/juices and get your thoughts on them. One day when you have a minute hit me up!!

  • Brittany

    I love the idea of transformation I think constant transformations are great! I also love your birdy wall, AND your handstand is LEGIT!

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