Going Solo: Why You Should Go to a Movie Alone

I pulled my debit card out of the ticket machine, and retrieved my ticket as it spit out. I slid it in my jacket pocket, adjusted my purse strap on my right shoulder, and made my way to the concession.

As I stood in line, my first thought was everyone is staring at me; they all know I’m here alone.

I was sandwiched between a cuddly couple waiting in line in front of me, and a father with his two kids behind me.

Giggles filled the atmosphere.

“Can I help who’s next please?” I didn’t hear this.

“Can I help you?” The girl behind the counter called out to me. Her disapproving look on her face told me that she’d been calling to me a few times more than I realized.

Oops, I thought to myself.

I continued looking up at the menu board, and felt such a sense of freedom standing there. I could order anything I wanted. No one was waiting for me, except for the impatient girl taking my order.

I took a deep breath, inhaling a sense of peace. I tucked my hair behind my ear, and gave her my order of popcorn and drink.

When I arrived in the theatre room, I scanned the rows of seats. There were many available, with only about twenty people waiting for the movie to start.

I can sit wherever I want. I exhaled any embarrassment that I mistakenly felt.

Juggling my fountain drink in my right hand and my overflowing popcorn bag in my left, I made my way up the stairs to the middle row, and walked across to the centre.

Though it was in a public theatre, I found it peaceful seated there alone. It was like it would be at home, on the couch, except with a huge screen.

I walked out of that theatre feeling renewed. Though, the movie didn’t turn out to be a favourite of mine, the experience was.

This was about four years ago now. I think I’m due for another, as I miss it…

Going to see a movie alone is so freeing.

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I’ve met countless people who claim that they could never see a movie alone. And even I was one of them. But I am telling you, it is so good for the soul. It is so freeing for the soul. Whether you’re single or in a relationship, give it a try sometime. You just might like it!

Benefits of Going to a Movie Alone:

  • You can pick whichever movie you want, with ease.
  • It’s liberating
  • Sit wherever you like
  • Enjoy some “me time”
  • It’s empowering
  • Learn to be alone (if you’re not used to it)

Sincerely + gratefully,

Jen

5 Ways to Ignite a Fire in Your Soul

5 Ways to ignite a fire in your soul

I feel a big life change brewing. I’ve been feeling it for most of the last year. As if I’ve been walking on a goldmine, and have had no idea what’s beneath me.

I’ve had this excitement simmering in my soul, just waiting to boil over and make its appearance.

Though I don’t really know what’s brewing, it’s comforting to have that feeling, as it’s better than the alternative: having no hope or any desire to achieve and move forward in life. So although I’m feeling impatient, I’m also feeling thankful, and trusting God in the process.

So although I’m feeling impatient, I’m also feeling thankful, and trusting God in the process.

I’ve thought a lot about what could have led me to this feeling, and I came up with a number of factors that I believe contributed to bringing me here.

1. Start a challenge.

I started a 365 project with my photography on my instagram account at the beginning of 2017. This was a crucial aspect of my growth and lighting the fire within me. It pushed me out of my comfort zone, and held me accountable for taking personal photographs more often, and expanding my creative mind in experimenting with different styles and light. Being something that I absolutely enjoy, it brought peace and joy to my soul by doing it more often, and sharing my love for it more often.

While I technically “failed” this project/challenge, in my mind I actually won with success. I posted a new photo daily for 67 days, not the 365, but the benefits and growth I experienced from it was so priceless. I did not fail.

I believe this can be done with more than photography. It can be with anything you enjoy, or anything that you’ve been wanting to do better at. It could be a challenge of running, yoga, journaling, walking, drawing, etc. Document your journey, and inspire others. You never know what doors will open!

2. Join a group of like-minded people.

I joined a small group at my church. Once a week I get together with a group of beautiful souls. We lift each other up, support each other, learn together, grow together, pray together, laugh and cry together. Though I am not able to make it to group every week due to a rotating work schedule, I am so grateful for these ladies.

3. Be vulnerable.

In my opinion, this one is important. You can read more about my story of vulnerability here. My 365 project also led to my sharing of my writing, mostly through poetry. It began with posting photos, and wanting a good caption with them, so I started writing poems like I did when I was younger.

4. Books and/or podcasts

Read more books about personal growth (self-help), or if you listen to podcasts, listen to more personal growth topics.

I am a bookaholic.

5. Journal

Everyone in my life knows how I feel about journaling. If you’re not doing it, start.

If you need some tips about keeping the habit of journaling, check out my last blog post here.

So, until I figure out the “big change” I’ve been feeling in my bones, coming my way, I’ll just keep walking along and singing my song 😉 (moms, you know where that line’s from, am I right?) hehe.

Have you ever had this feeling?

Sincerely + gratefully,

Jen

how to ignite a fire in your soul

Vulnerability: How I freed My Heart + Found Myself

It’s a strange thing, vulnerability. Like shedding a layer of your skin off, and exposing the world inside of you, it is both refreshing and uncomfortable. The perfect mix of confidence and insecurity. We think that we are alone in the fact that we have a dark, maybe even ‘strange’ world beneath our surface. We think that we should never let that part of us see the light of day. Suppress it. Neglect it. You keep pushing away that piece of you that you believe is so unworthy.  There’s that piece that might’ve even been haunting you for a large portion of your life, because you’re so ashamed of it. You think if you keep it to yourself, it’s not true.  It’s easier to just ignore the tough emotions that we’ve dealt with in our lives, and try to forget them.

But vulnerability is so much more than any of this. It can be healing. It can be healing for not only you- but for others as well. We’re all fighting battles. Most of them, we are completely unaware of. Have you felt worthless for years because you didn’t get the support you so desperately needed as a child? Have you been blaming yourself for something, and it has been devouring you? We all have something. Most of us have a version of ourselves that we are not proud of.

We have all been a small child, and that little girl or boy still lives within our hearts.  For most of my life, I locked mine away. And every so often, she would cry to be let out; to be set free. Every time she tried to get out, or screamed in agony, I’d yell back. I would push her arms back through the bars of the prison cell that I had built inside my heart. And I’d add another lock on the door. Again and again, I would turn away from her, and give her my back. I’d walk away from that cold, empty cell in the corner of my heart– that cell that holds the girl I once was. And I’d cry for her. With every piece of me that had fallen away, I would cry for her. Then she would be quiet and I would ignore her again, until the next time that she wept and cried out in agony.

I spent much of my teens and twenties resisting everything I was. I created this mask that covered my foundation; everything that made me who I was as a child. With everything I had, I pushed that little girl far back inside of me. I hid her so well that even I had a hard time finding her on the day I decided that I missed her. Whatever it took to be friends with certain people, I devoted to becoming. I suppressed so many aspects of myself.  I suppressed them so well, that they created a pool of sadness within my heart. And I was drowning.

I have graduated highschool, and been to college, while having grown up in an unstable, alcoholic atmosphere. I have loved and been married. I gave birth to a child. I have been divorced. And I have loved again. Of all of the experiences I have been through, the toughest, by far, would be in loving myself. It has been tough, mainly because I haven’t felt worthy. I could say that I wish I had known this piece of information years earlier, but then I wouldn’t be who I am today. And now that I’ve discovered more of whom that is—I quite like her.

Imagine what doors would open, if we were sincere about who we are. Imagine how inspiring you could be to someone who feels lost, or alone. Imagine the lives that could change for the good of this world.

I have never felt more freedom than when I unlocked that cell. I will never forget the sound of the rusty door scraping along the floor of my heart as I swung it open and walked across to the corner on the other side, where I saw the shadow of a little girl, curled up on the floor. With whispers of past hurts, regrets, and tears, echoing all around me, I held out my hand, as the frail little girl slowly lifted her head to look at me. I felt her icy fingers in mine, and helped her to her feet. Brushing her hair away from her face, I looked into her deep, beautiful, innocent eyes. And I told her that she was amazing. I told her that she would be worthy of anything that she would want out of this world. I told her that she is loved- so unconditionally loved- by Him.

If we’re blessed with a safe place to share, maybe it is good once in a while. Maybe what we need is to console and love our inner child; our inner self.

Sincerely + Gratefully,

Jen