Light and Love is always guiding you. Have Faith and Trust the hand that leads the way…
Although, with the eye, one cannot see it, my left hand is present at all times and never leaves my side. Not in just the phantom sensation sense but the energy and in Spirit; it remains as a gift, if you will, of what it Truly means to live. There’s an absolute knowing that although I cannot always grasp this missing piece of me, it is always present as a reminder that I survived and will continue to each and every day, with our without it because our bodies, careers, relationships, house, car, status, our “circumstances” DO NOT DEFINE our LIFE; our HEART. Fulfillment, validation, security, Happiness & Love can not be found and obtained “out there”, as in, outside of ourselves. We all have a gift, a light and treasure within that is infinitely greater than anything the world can offer…Love. ”Every fiber of our being down to the smallest particle of our being is LOVE. We have Love. We are Love. We provide Love for the entire world, simply by existing.” ~ Caroline A. Shearer Love is the source of all!!! Love IS indestructible and that, my friends, can never be broken or taken from us, it lives within, always has, and it is yours to cherish and celebrate.
“Love is what we are born with. Fear is what we learn. The spiritual journey is the unlearning of fear and prejudices and the acceptance of love back in our hearts. Love is the essential reality and our purpose on earth. To be consciously aware of it, to experience love in ourselves and others, is the meaning of life. Meaning does not lie in things. Meaning lies in us.” ~ Marianna Williamson
We all may dream, desire and seek to become something GREATER than our present “circumstance” but our risk of not reaching our full potential is perpetuated by self inhibiting fears and DISbelief in oneself; “not enough”, low/no self esteem, image distorted misconceptions of self and negating the beauty and value of your unique gift to the Universe; your PURPOSE. Sad, really, how the most dysfunctional relationship we have is with ourselves sometimes:( When we can grasp the Truth that our circumstances do not define us, we then SEE & BELIEVE that we are capable and beyond…EVERYTHING you want is on the other side of fear. LOVE. Our greater purpose already is present and lives within, whether we can see it or not. To me, this is what it means to just have Faith. You might not always recognize it with the eye, but you know the Spirit is alive and present when you believe……
I believe God’s purpose will always prevail as He guides you with His hand, lifts you up and never leaves your side. There are no accidents in an intelligent Universe. You are living out your story, your purpose…right NOW.
“Seek His will in all you do and He will direct your paths….” Proverbs 3:6 …and she never looked back. I Believe.
After enduring the greatest physical & mental challenge of my Life, Running from LA to Vegas, 340 miles, 41 hours, on a pro running team😳!!!! Clarity. Truth. I’m Alive! Something once insane, unfathomable to me but I had a vision that exceeded self doubt & fear: INSPIRE greatness for others in the most unfathomable circumstances, because something whispered to me I AM CAPABLE!!! And so are You! Just #BELIEVEandBECOME !! I Believed. I Became. Please follow our journey @thespeedproject for updates on the documentary. #LASP #speedproject #Nike #NikeRunning #Faith #Believeandbecome
THANK YOU FOR GIVING ME THE STRENGTH, THE COURAGE, THE PASSION, THE DRIVE, THE POWER, LIMITLESS LOVE, THE GIFT OF LIFE ITSELF. THANK YOU FOR MY LIFE!
Exactly 4 years ago today I woke up in a hospital bed surrounded by people who loved me, a garden of beautiful, vibrant flowers and selfless doctors. Tears running down faces, sadness, empathy and pain filled the room. I knew my life was altered and had changed forever that morning. In response to all the LOVE surrounding me, my initial response was, “No no, it’s ok. I’m still here. THANK YOU ALL. WE’RE ALIVE so LET’S LIVE.” More or less, but really…a new perspective whispered “it’s time to truly live your life….if not now then when?” This morning, I again woke up with even more admiration for life than yesterday or the day before or that very morning 4 years ago to this day. I loved my coffee. I loved my body for allowing me an 10 mile run this am. My mind, my sight, my breath of LIFE. My beautiful family and friends. I loved the gift of another beautiful day to breathe, love and LIVE! I was right. My life did change in the most incredible way March 18, 2009……I fell in LOVE with LIFE.
You gave me wings & I used them ….
“God doesn’t call the qualified. He qualifies the called….” The Lord’s purpose will prevail.
It is not in perfection that others are inspired…Let others get inspired by how you deal and use your imperfections. With every day, embrace your opportunity to conquer, achieve, inspire, educate, help, Love & LIVE . A new day, created for YOU. On this pursuit, Trust His plan. You are living your Life’s purpose … UNfailing Faith. To God be the Glory! Much Love.
I accept that I am a living poster child of surviving life’s unpredictable journey, when at times may feel inhumanly painful, scary or confusing. My life now seems to fulfill one big social experiment. How one individual perceives me to the next is the most elaborate study of the human psyche and behavior. Some are scared, saddened, angered, confused, inspired or simply, just curious when they see me. How, why, what happened to her? Then, for a split second, I can almost see the frequency overload firing as their mind tries to comprehend the meaning of something so “weird” or “sad, tragic” or “inspiring”. Regardless of what people were occupied with in the moment before, once they take my “circumstance” in, I feel a shift; a sense of gratitude for their own life. Some reactions reveal they’re glad “it didn’t happen to them”….and I know first hand that life can change in an instant for anyone. You don’t get an explanation, the answer, the meaning of it all. Just left with your own psyche, inner relationship with self and, ultimately, with God. I feel as if I am living closer to my True self and purpose than ever before.
In 4 years what is it I have learned? What have I discovered? I am a constant reminder to others of the unpredictable, inexplainable circumstances we are sometimes handed in life. I have learned that no circumstance truly defines you, but for most of us, we most likely think it does. I believe I was given a “role” in life, a purpose if you will, that allows me to help, teach and inspire others to live more fruitful lives almost every day. The more I embrace that role and all that I am, right here, right now, I get a sense of clarity that whatever I have become up to this point is what, where and who I am suppose to BE*. Whatever this circumstance is, it enables me to give more love. I proceed through the daily hardships, trials, challenges in one way only: Give more LOVE. We are able to survive the pain of any day when we Live in Love.
We all search for that ultimate meaning, purpose or reason behind it all, the only thing that remains true and constant for me is an ever evolving path to create a happy life. That entails trial and error, successes and failures, hits and misses. This way of life ignites a burning passion in me for this Life that never, ever stops stops growing and evolving. ”The pursuit of happiness” may insinuate a defeating search to reach ultimate peace and happiness rather than BEing happy and at peace NOW. However, I’ve stated in previous blogs that it isn’t until we stop searching “out there”, as in outside ourselves, for something or someone to bring us happiness that we find real peace within. YOU are the ONLY one who can provide, create, understand the essence of happiness within self. Nothing and definitely no one else can achieve that for YOU.
Fall in Love with what you have to offer this world! Loving my new self, just the way I am, regardless of the weirdness, pain, stares, physical and mental challenges, allows my “uniqueness” to service others in more ways than I ever imagined. There may be moments of apprehension but the rest of the time find the courage to step out into the world and scream, Hello! This is ME and I’m not going anywhere. It is NOW, and I am never stopping. People often ask me “how do you it?” I guess I don’t think much of it. I just DO. Unfailing Faith! Never give up and never alone. In Faith, I CAN do it. Anything is possible. We’ve all perhaps experienced beautiful revelations, wisdom, strength, courage and resilience that come from struggle, pain, tragedy and even despair. The Truth in my experience is I may have been broken down only to be built up, restored, stronger and wiser to become the woman He wants to use. Have unfailing Faith that you were created for greatness. Never underestimate your unique purpose and don’t be afraid to show the world exactly who you are. One day, one person, one story, one smile at a time, we can make a difference and change lives!
I dedicate my experience to teach, help and inspire others, with or without disability of any sort, to LOVE who you are, embrace your “flaws” and become who you are meant to be. I want to encourage us all to educate and teach others rather than pitty and label, relate and connect rather than judge, appreciate and love rather than make assumptions on others situations. This is our one life; we will be challenged, scared, intrigued, tempted, tested only to bring us closer to Truth. … embrace, learn, accept, move forward and teach for the means of living a more enriched, invested life….and to God be the glory!
Oh ya, you may ask, what could be so “interesting” or “weird” about me that people take a moment out of their lives to give me the real them? Well, for starters, & only starters, exactly 4 years ago today I lost my left hand in a car accident. THANK YOU for today, and EVERY DAY FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE!!!!
“… nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get it and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done! Now if you know what you’re worth then go out and get what you’re worth. But ya gotta be willing to take the hits, and not pointing fingers saying you ain’t where you wanna be because of him, or her, or anybody! Cowards do that and that ain’t you”! ~ ROCKY Best Quote Ever!
BELIEVE. Believe and Become.
“When they said it wasn’t going to be easy, things would never be the same, I lost it all…I responded with, ”sooo how awesome can I make this NEW life amidst this “tragedy”. However, periodically I’d have frightening thoughts that created a sharp, burning sensation in my heart. I remember a time in my life when I first experienced “heartbreak”; my heart was in pain, aching, broken. But this time was different, unfamiliar, & scary. A fleeting, doubtful thought came rushing in, “Will anyone ever truly Love me again?” I immediately responded confidently with, “Yes. Of course.” I knew the answer & I felt relieved; not sure why I knew, I just did because I STILL had my Faith. If I am alive, He is not finished with me or my purpose to rise and prevail. I still had me, my Life, & I LOVED it more than ever. There’s a wonderful law that attracts & I knew someone would reflect that love.
And then, we all know the unnecessary, ridiculous trickle effect of negative thought. For me it began with: “Will I be starred at & perceived as a weak, crippled or incompetent individual by others? Can I handle that perception of me?” Probably, I tried convincing myself, “If I like me, other’s perception of me can’t change that, right?” So I worked towards things I was passionate about that made me feel healthy & whole. Acting, nutrition, and sport, giving, creating…I remember taking walks alone, shopping in Beverly Hills just a couple weeks later; no hand, no bandage, just my new normal because that’s all I had. I could imagine the confusion it stirred up when someone saw this “normal” looking girl, but something was blatantly missing; almost frightening to fathom for oneself. I thought, “Being that girl with one hand might take some time to get use to myself; it is what it is & I understand you just can’t get around the elephant in the room…the looks are just a part of it Chauntal” I talked to myself & God A LOT, thankfully guiding me through. It’s an extremely unconventional distortion to some but then to see “the girl with one hand” smiling, laughing, going about life in a healthy, positive way, was almost even more unconventional to observe I imagine. I understand now, that the way I was handling it all was what was conflicting for the mind to comprehend.
Believe to achieve greatness! ❤✨ Rise up and soar!!! …. Oh but remember, you are never Truly alone … #Believeandbecome
“He deliberately chooses imperfect vessels; those who have been wounded, with physical or emotional limitations. Then He prepares them to serve and sends them out with their weakness still evident so that His strength can be made perfect in that weakness.” Your circumstances do not define you, but perhaps a definitive asset to living your True purpose. Embrace your “flaws” and have UNfailing Faith. You are capable. You are qualified.
When we hear the phrase “Just have faith”, it sometimes feels like this distant, unsupported cliche on what we all try to conquer daily: “Trust everything is going to be just fine.” Although it’s casually thrown around like just another generic, positive encouragement, what is the truth in this advice? We have two choices in how we approach life: in fear or in Faith? The choice is yours. To have Faith you have to Believe… Believe that you are worthy, capable and meant to live a happy, healthy, fulfilled, good Life! Believe this Truth! Faith will not necessarily make things easier but it makes anything possible. Without all things possible you are left with guaranteed defeat: the impossible. Many individuals may have a misconception of what it means to have Faith. The desire to have faith is a deep, heartfelt desire. It wells up from your heart when you seek a truer way to live from Spirit and it often rises up in times of struggle or pain. Perhaps the way to experience true faith, not just talk about it, is to allow it to carry us through times of trouble. Trust.
After I lost my left hand in a car accident, I tried to jump right back into my old lifestyle with completely new circumstances. Soon enough I realized, I was afraid I wouldn’t reach my full potential in Life after this “self-inhibiting”, physical loss. The scariest thing for me was getting back on that stage, let alone the audition room full of, for lack of a better word, “judgement”. The charasmatic, brave, trusting actress I once knew began to listen to false whispers of self doubt, failure, and defeat about my new self… How would they perceive me? This haunting question being our most limiting, universal fear: How will others perceive us? Fear of failure to family, friends, pears, but most destructively, to self. Through many days, now years of faithful practice through the battles and struggles I endured, I’ve not only believed but experience the possible in what seemed impossible. This is the ultimate power of Faith over fear. Shift of perspective and an all knowing Trust. ”When you change the way you look at things the things you look at change.”
Had I not taken the leap, taken action and continued to pursue a lifelong dream, I was guaranteed 100% failure. I find liberation in pursuing this outstanding task; to step in front of a crowd and perhaps be rejected as an actress with one hand. Quite frankly, I got a lot of the sympathy card rather than a receptive audience to a talented actress that happens to have one hand. I experienced the awkward applause for the “disABLED” girl or a generic “good for her” comment rather than seeing ME as an up and coming, successful artist. But as I continue to face my fear, overcome mixed reactions from the outside world that is not myself, this unconventional mission I choose to pursue becomes more respected and accepted, as I no longer can fear how others might perceive me. It was almost as if the outside perspective no longer existed when I realized I am the only One who can judge or define my success or failure.
Fact: I have one hand. I love to act. I have a dream that can only die through fear. So perhaps you feel awkward, unattractive, overweight, untalented, unpopular, “WHO CARES WHAT THEY THINK”. If you can conceive it, Believe it, YOU can achieve it!*
Fear has an incredible ability to paralyze our potential, to keep us from launching out to become who we are meant to be and ultimately, to keep us from believing in ourselves. When we feel the presence of fear we must admit its presence and declare that our Faith is stronger than our fear. Make this declaration over and over again, strengthening Faith by choosing it. Rather focus on our disabilities, celebrate our abilities. Whatever physical, emotional or mental obstacles we face, it is so minimal to ALL the greatness we have to offer the world. That statement of Truth is a state of absolute Faith.
Physical pain, on the other hand, is something I understand far too well….and when I felt that the suffering and sharp phantom pains would never escape me, I endured the awakening presence of Life beyond pain … through this suffering, I realized I am very much ALIVE because I feel. It can only get better from here. If you are in a time of trouble count it a a blessing, as trouble gives you the opportunity to consciously choose Faith over fear! Believe in something greater than this; in a life of abundance, ease and happiness. Had I focused on all the things I could no longer physically do that I once did with 2 hands I’d be limited in a paralyzed state of mind; of being.
LET YOUR FAITH BE BIGGER THAN YOUR FEARS
Lastly, I was in spin bootcamp the other day, and my awesome instructor said exactly the same thing I was working on for this piece; I love moments of synchronicity … He said, “What if this was your very last ride? How would you go out? How would you let this define you? Giving up before it is over or give it all you got till the very last second?!” I almost killed myself on the last song lol 😝 but those last few minutes were so symbolic to how I want to live my life. In every area, if these were my last days, how would I want to go out? In fear or in Faith? I understand not all of us are met with a near death experience but had I not woken up 3 years ago, I realize only FEAR was holding me back from living my life to the fullest; inhibiting me from fully Believing and Becoming who I want to spend all my days being. I walk in Faith because I chose.
If this Life as we know it were to disappear, END tomorrow, what would you do in the face of your FEARs? How will you spend your last days and what in the world is holding you back now? ”TODAY is the first day of the rest of your Life.” If you are alive and willing, you are capable. Perhaps you don’t think you are “willing” to expand and put yourself in the face of your fears, but having a desire to become greater in any area of your life allows greater possibility to become your reality, which is one step closer to achieving your dream. The power of one inspired thought leads to endless possibilities….
We are all worthy of the abundance of God’s greatness. You must Believe. And beyond just being a Believer, be a Becomer. Believe to Become your wildest dreams & beyond!
Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about the things we cannot see. ~ Hebrews 11:1
DON’T CRY ABOUT IT, DANCE ABOUT IT!!!
Exactly what I needed to hear!!! Perhaps you do too! This is YOUR time. This is MY time. This is OUR time. WE in this together! Let’s Make every day better for each other. We are all on the same team, take it from the kid, lets start acting like it! CREATE SOMETHING THAT WILL MAKE THE WORLD AWESOME!!!! “Don’t stop BELIEVING….unless your dream is stupid, get another dream ))) I’m on your team. Be on my team.” #BelieveandBecome
Last weekend I experienced a very SPECIAL reminder that there truly are no accidents, meaningless events or “mistakes” that take place in our lives …. 4 years ago, I auditioned for a playhouse in Hollywood called the 68 Cent Theatre. At this time my career seemed to be getting great momentum, and rising quickly. However, I felt it was becoming harder to be taken seriously as an actress the more I was being considered for more competitive roles in the industry. How was I going to make my mark, inspire, be True to myself and not fall into the assumed category as just another blonde, “do-da-doo actress” ? (other’s presumed perceptions:) My vision was always clear: Stay True to self, and remember why I started acting in the first place. To create. Inspire. A passion I didn’t choose, just always was. Because I LOVE it.
I hadn’t done theater since I was about 15 years old, not really my thing if you will, but I knew it would be another avenue to exercise and consistently work on my craft. Like any other sport! Actors must act. Apprehensive to the theater idea, my friend talked me into it and I found myself underestimating my talent amongst a very East Coast dominant community of very talented actors. I proceeded to walk into the audition, with a pink dress and smiled my way to the stage. I raised my own bar and delivered a solid piece from the play “Proof” with confidence and no appologies in who I was…a little blonde, smiley 23 year old:) So…I got in! I did several shows and was a committed company member for over a year. I was in this magical play called “Let us go out into the Starry Night” in a John Patrick Shanley (13) Festival during a very traumatic time in my life. The fateful night; I was in a terrifying car accident and I lost my left hand. I believe it was on a Thursday and I was to perform on Friday. When my Theatre 68 family came to visit me I specifically remember theatre founder/creative director, Ronnie Marmo, presenting me with a huge basket of goodies & a framed picture of me with daisies surounding it signed by every member of the company. No words, but LOVE. I remember apologizing, I’d ruin the weekends show but as soon as I got out of the hospital I’d be back. It was probably taken as a sweet, unrealistic gesture at the time, but when passion truly lives in the heart & soul, we are unstoppable. Exactly 3 weeks later I jumped back on stage and finished out the show.
That first night back I’ll never forget. A standing ovation, as acting and that stage made me feel more alive than ever. I felt so inspired to INSPIRE. I was told I was an inspiration and for the longest time I never truly believed it or understood why? I just knew I was still given this life to LIVE in it. On this “pursuit of happiness”, there is no plan we can set in perfect motion; God’s purpose will always prevail. I look back now, appreciating the resilient persistence and determination that lived within myself, I never even knew existed till then. Giving up wasn’t & isn’t an option. In the last 3 years, I’ve gone on to not only star in feature films, guest spots, commercials; although acting is and will always be my first Love, I found greater purpose to inspire not only on stage or film but stay true to my mission to inspire greatness through many artistic avenues, on the greatest stage of all: MY LIFE. I’ve lived more life exploring, helping others find their purpose and being receptive to whatever He calls me to do and be….When so many cried in my arms saying, “Now what. You “we’re” going to be an actress” I almost believed the lie I could have told myself. But instead I was lifted….when passion lives within, it is God’s purpose and intention for you, He will bring to pass every dream and promise He has put in your heart. And again, just another perfect piece to my puzzle, this company I was once so apprehensive to join, is family to me.
Last weekend was a very SPECIAL reminder of trusting the bigger purpose, amidst any adversity! Two months ago, I simply walked back into Theatre 68 to say hello to Ronnie & friends, and audition for a play a week later and last weekend I found myself, full circle, on my home stage!!!!! My first live show, back on stage @ Ronnie Marmo Theatre-Company. Doing what I Love. Loving what I do!
No matter where we think this journey should’ve, would’ve, coul’ve taken us, TRUST, You are exactly where you are meant to be. There are no accidents in His plan for you. It was all created FOR you. You may not understand; embrace the confusion. You may hurt; appreciate the pain of being ALIVE! If you are in pain, struggling, feeling lost or hopeless, in Faith, celebrate this time to strengthen, grow, evolve, to prepare, educate, explore and LIVE the life you are meant to live. Your better days are ALWAYS yet to come!
Please come support “Check Please” showing every Friday & Saturday at 10p @Theatre68 Ill be starring in one-act “Dented Cans” with Joe Dalo written by miss Ariel Hart & directed by Ronnie Marmo
You gave me wings & I used them ….
“God doesn’t call the qualified. He qualifies the called….” The Lord’s purpose will prevail.
“He deliberately chooses imperfect vessels; those who have been wounded, with physical or emotional limitations. Then He prepares them to serve and sends them out with their weakness still evident so that His strength can be made perfect in that weakness.” ~ Christine Caine
It is not in perfection that others are inspired…Let others get inspired by how you deal and use your imperfections. With every day, embrace your opportunity to conquer, achieve, inspire, educate, help, Love & LIVE . A new day, created for YOU. On this pursuit, Trust His plan. You are living your Life’s purpose … UNfailing Faith. To God be the Glory and have a BLESSED day!!! Much Love *CcL
True kindness lies in the act of giving without the expectation of something in return…
“People are often unreasonable and self-centered.
Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of ulterior motives.
Be kind anyway.
If you are honest, people may cheat you.
Be honest anyway.
If you find happiness, people may be jealous.
Be happy anyway.
The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.
Give the world the best you have and it may never be enough.
Give your best anyway.
For you see, in the end, it is between you and God.
It was never between you and them anyway.”
~ Momma Theresa
… the doers, the courageous, the Believers* Surround yourself with Love
Surround yourself with people who Believe in You. Surround yourself with people who are going to life you higher.
Surround yourself with people who know your worth……You don’t need too many peopleto be happy, Just a few…. real ones who appreciate you for exactly WHO you are…
There are so many gratuitous quotes that I want to scream out to the the world and encourage others to share the same delight in celebrating our daily blessings! Here’s my best attempt to sum it up: Give Thanks to the One who Blesses You. Be grateful for all that you are, all that you have, all that you have become, all that you will become and simply look upward and say Thank You.
Happy & Thankful!
Thankful. Thankful. Thankful. All week, All day, Always! Another beautiful year of Love, blessings & gifts of LIFE. When I ask the question “What am I most thankful for?”, how could I ever sum it up? Well, for starters, thank You for my ever evolving life of possibility, discovery, knowledge, laughter, lessons, inspirations, and unlimited LOVE to give & receive….For ALL things that make up this journey we embark on every day. And just how fortunate we are to be given this chance to Live it.
The foundation of Life, I believe is granted in the simple things that perhaps we unconsciously take for granted every single day that in fact shape our lives. If we turn our definition of “the little things” in life to more like our abundant foundation, we realize just how very lucky & blessed we all are…I have a job, good health, a home, food, a car, clothes, amazing friends & family; I have this moment and this breath of Life. Whoaaaa! I just described my life!! Healthy, happy and blessed. I Love my friends, my family, my opportunity to LIVE! I <3 LIFE! One day I literally just started substituting the word life with gift, for mine was put in perspective, shown grace and blessings rather than a lack there of. What we all consider the simple things really is the essence of life!
Sol, how is it we find ourselves focussing, or even unconsciously obsessing over the things we “wish” were different or better in our lives. We constantly reinforce that our present state is not enough when thousands less fortunate, suffering, would trade places with our American lifestyles. And for some, even taking their last breath in this very moment. Sure, there might be a struggle to maintain this simple foundation of maintaining your job, relationship, your purpose. Therefore a slight resentment towards the minimum expectation of you to function in this economic struggle, consuming generation creeps in every now and then. Your purpose is beyond self fulfillment. Or perhaps, you are the one looked enviously towards for living “the good life”, achieving great things and not suffering in this economy? You are blessed so that you can be a blessing! Show your thanks by giving, how little or much you have to offer, others need you!
No matter what you do , where you came from, who you are, Life takes work and effort, but YOU have to show up. Ready, willing, hungry for living the Life God intended for you. Imagine if we no longer lived in a striving state of mind, seeking something bigger and better and simply recognized, “THIS, right here, right NOW, is Amazing.” Count your blessings. “Once you realize how valuable you are and how much you have going for you, the smiles will return, the sun will break out, the music will play, and you will finally be able to move forward the life that God intended for you with grace, strength, courage, and confidence.”
I remind myself not to take the good things for granted. From my experience, it was confirmed that my body, possessions, external experiences do not define me. At one point in my life, the most minimal daily tasks that were once perfunctory to me became obstacles that seemed to take over my new normal. Gratefully, my strength, defeat and power to wake up to really live a life of purpose, I know now, I can overcome. Being able to smile when things get tough. Try harder when I want to give up. And give Life all I got! Grace and Resilience. I recognize that this is my biggest gift, within. I am most thankful for understanding this Truth; my Truest self within. It’s a way of life, a practice if you will, that’s ever evolving. There’s always room for growth but I just feel grateful for my higher understanding and relationship with God and self more than I’ve ever known. Here’s to the happiest Holiday season yet. Thanking friends & family & you. Peace. Love. Blessings to all! And above all, Thank the One who Blesses us.
After returning from my amazing Nike Campus experience in Portland, OR last week I felt empowered to be the BEST athlete I could be; the BEST me. Nike always has a way of doing that:) Watching Alberto Salazar coach & train Olympic Silver medalist, Galen Rupp, and future Olympic champions on the track, I felt so inspired to run harder, faster, longer than perhaps I ever have in my runners life. I had no intention of even enrolling in yesterday’s Malibu Marathon until a friend of mine casually mentioned it a week prior, and I knew it was the perfect opportunity to put my skills to the test. I always speak about the power of just saying YES! to opportunity, to create possibility. So I did.
After training with Nike+ Kinect all week and pushing my limits on my long distance runs with the Nike Training Club, when this opportunity presented itself I realized this is what I physically may have been trained to do but let’s see how my mind responds when put to the test.
My goal was to finish in an hour, 45 minutes … However, the competitive athlete in me took over; I went in with “In it to win it” mentality. Realistically I didn’t think I’d even come close, but I committed to give it everything I could and just have FUN! To my surprise, I finished 10 minutes faster than I anticipated. I ranked 3rd female in my division! Just about 3 years ago, I would maybe run to my local Starbucks, order a latte and walk back. After my accident I was without a car for about 4 months, I began to walk the streets and run LA, literally. Who would have thought a simple choice to keep moving forward and never give up no matter what Life throws at you, could bear such fruit & rewarding victory in my Life. My choice to lead a healthy, active lifestyle has enhanced the quality of my life in so many areas. Hours of faithful practice, determined training, consistent running when I could come up with hundreds of excuses to quit, I never did. Yesterday felt nice to receive validation on why I train hard at Life. I recognized greatness and an unknown success in myself. It’s interesting, when we set goals, no matter how big or small in Life, we create possibility. Without possibility there is only the impossible. Never underestimate the power of unfailing Faith: “Whether you think you can or you can’t, either way you are right!” When you Believe you can, YOU CAN. Become.
GAME DAY! Rise And RUN! Race to Paradise!
Just finishing a marathon at any level isn’t just an athletic achievement. It’s a state of mind; a state of mind that says anything is possible.
Claiming #MYMOMENT on the RUNway! 13.1 miles later! Feeling like a gazelle!
“The thirst you feel in your throat and lungs will be gone minutes after the race is over. The pain in your legs within days, but the glory of your finish will last forever.”
AND ON TO THE NEXT! Never in my life did I ever imagine these words would be coming out of my mouth BUT…..I just signed up for the Hawaii Marathon 26 miles, December 9, 2012! To achieve is to Believe.
“I don’t think about the miles that are coming down the road, I don’t think about the mile I’m on right now, I don’t think about the miles I’ve already covered. I think about what I’m doing right now, just being lost in the moment.” ~ Ryan Hall, U.S Olympic marathoner
It is a mission of mine to INSPIRE GREATNESS in everything I do. I rarely update my personal life but I can’t help but want to share the journey it has been and will be with you…I have been training mentally, physically, with full intention to INSPIRE OTHERS to find their own Greatness within themselves. I find myself stepping up to much more meaningful challenges than I’ve ever had to endure. As I naturally battle daily struggles, try to comprehend life, seek further and trust in Faith, I now see my previous ways of overcoming and reaching new levels of my own greatness have surpassed any self-fulfilling desire; I realize I train hard to find greatness, but I train at my BEST to INSPIRE others to find theirs!!!
This month I was recognized as a “Global Influencer” by my greatest inspiration, a mentor, if you will, NIKE. I was asked to rise up to a specific challenge in accordance to the question, “What are you training for?” I was recognized as a Nike LA Destroyer for their 2011 Destroyer campaigned and I feel so honored to be one of the few selected every day elite athletes, artists & influentialists to visit the Nike Campus HQ in Portland, Oregon for the launch of XBox’ NikePlus Kinect high intensity Training program. I feel so blessed to once again share “My Moment” with NIKE! I had just finished an 8 mile run when I received the invitation; catching my breath, the presence of sweat and pounding heartbeat, I thought to myself, “What am I training for?” On a greater platform, not just in sport, career, but in LIFE! I didn’t have a direct response, but I knew I train every day for my passion for Life itself. I never gave up, and I never will!
I train to find my own greatness within, to be the BEST athlete I can be, BEST actress, BEST daughter, friend, the BEST me I can be. The actual training week leading up to the challenge in Oregon, I discovered that the further I pushed my own limits and challenged myself mentally, physically & spiritually, I reached a higher level of fulfillment; I was inspiring others to do the same. It no longer became about me but about the growth, success & greatness developing around me in others as they joined the movement. In turn YOU inspire me to never quit, never give up & never lose Faith! Thank you. Here’s a look at #MYMOMENT Thanks @NIKE @NIKEWOMEN @NIKEPLUS for an amazing #NikePlusKinect experience and reminding me what I train for in Life every day! I BELIEVE TO BECOME THE GREATEST “WE” WE CAN BE!!!
Inspiration. Training week. My home turf. Venice/SantaMonica, CA. Cali Life. I run LA, literally. Golds Gym, Venice. Cyclist. Temescal Canyon Hike. Lifestyle. No excuses. Never giving up! I TRAIN TO INSPIRE GREATNESS.
Nike Campus. Land of champions. Michael Jordan. Alberto Salazar. US Gold medalist. Galen Rupp. Megan Rapinoe. Future champions in the making. Legends. Inspiring. Nike Inovation. Super inspired to return home and be the BEST me I can be! Find your Greatness. It’s OUR moment. Give Life everything you’ve got!!!
No matter where we think this journey should’ve, would’ve, could’ve taken us, in Faith, Trust we are exactly where we’re meant to be!!! Life happens & it’s a gift, depending on how YOU perceive it. So have a GOOD day & “watch with glittering eyes, those who Believe* in magic just might find it!!!!” ✨✨✨ ~ Chauntal Lewis
I’d like to thank everyone who came out to the ”Believe And Become” very first charity event in partnership with The Young & Brave Foundation last Monday at Nine Zero One Salon in support of our hero, Travis Taylor!! Your generosity and donations have opened up new possibility for Travis to overcome & flourish in the journey that awaits him. Travis’ spirit is shining brighter than ever and he is well on his way to recovery with help from his wonderful friends, family and you. He will be shopping prosthetics for the loss of his right arm next month because of your help! Thank you again for making it all possible and making a positive difference in ones life forever!
Every day we have the opportunity to learn and experience some-thing and some-one new. Seize the opportunity. Learn and experience everything you can, and use it to change the world!!! “Every good act is charity. A man’s true wealth hereafter is the good that he does in this world to his fellows.” …. Love*
~ Chauntal Lewis
A True Inspiration to us all….my Hero, Travis Taylor. Thank you for continuing to Believe* & sharing your Light* with world!
With my Sis, Riawna & Travis’ bro, Jesse. Through Family bond, we find STRENGTH & foundation. Blessed with the Best. Siblings.
Thanks to my good friend Nathaniel Curran, founder of “The Young & Brave” Foundation, for coming out to support all day & help make this possible!!!
The crew who helped bring it all together! Beautiful people.Thanks Caitlyn Crosby & The Giving Keys for donating custom Believe & Become & Brave keys for this special day!!! Your contribution made a great difference.
Nothing better than True friends volunteering time & Love to make a difference.
“Helping, fixing and serving represent three different ways of seeing life. When you help, you see life as weak. When you fix, you see life as broken. When you serve, you see life as whole. Fixing and helping may be the work of the ego, and service the work of the soul.”
Live simply so that others may simply LIVE* Thank you for giving Travis this opportunity! Give Love & God Bless*
Friends and Loved ones! I am hosting my very first “Believe and Become” fundraising event this Monday, August 20th, from 12-5p at the beautiful Nine Zero One Salon! I’ve partnered with “The Young and Brave” Foundation in support of cancer survivor, Travis Taylor. The Nine Zero One staff with be offering discounted services (%50 less than regular prices) along with a silent auction. 100% of the proceeds will go towards helping Travis in his recovery and the purchase of a prosthetic for the loss of his right arm. Please come out, support the cause and help change one life…one day at a time! Spread the word & the Love ♥
Please call Nine Zero One ASAP to book an appointment (accepting cash or check only the day of): 310-855-9099
Thank you for the support, always! Much Love xo #BELIEVEANDBECOME
Beauty is a light that shines from within. Let your True beauty shine! Living a life of Truth, Beauty, Love.
We are all artists. Creators. What makes You an artist? We create our lives every second.
I have an undying, burning passion to live and create as authentically as possible. In all areas of my life, I aspire to inspire! I have reinvented the meaning of structure in many areas in my life. My system and way of “just being me” with the use of ONE hand has evolved in such a way that allows me to proceed as effortlessly as I can. My new “normal”, making anything possible, with or without. There’s no other way when this is the way; I accept, adapt and proceed onward and upward! I somehow see the irony now, how my creativity is starting to filter through my one hand, in ways I never imagined. I find my right hand living a life for 2, as many forms of my expressive art is actually generated through my hand. For starters, my passion for writing has excelled not only on this blog, but many other projects, physically transcribed by my ONE and only
In my last blog I talked about staying INspired and acting on moments of inspiration. My focus has always been in performing arts, acting, dancing, singing, creating Life or a reflection of life. As I expand and evolve as any artist, I have been inspired to channel the literal artist that lives within me through my work as a makeup artist (@NineZeroOne Salon). This is an exciting new addition to my creative journey I love so much. Through my self-esteem education I also promote feeling healthy, alive and beautiful. As I have now done several transformative makeovers for individuals with low self-esteem, the most rewarding feeling I receive from this service is the confidence I see literally take place as they start to look and feel beautiful from start, through the process, to the final product. It’s important that we all feel happy with who we are and how we look. I always remind us all that happiness is the best makeup; a healthy, happy lifestyle will bring out the most illimunating YOU you can be!
I’ve worked in an industry for over 15 years where one’s image is integrated with artistic creation. Whether through film, television, fashion, to hair, makeup and beauty. We live in a beauty obsessed culture where the interpretation of beautiful is not only distorted but our youth has become oversaturated by media and pop culture generations; emphasizing thin, younger, prettier….. I am surrounded in a city where women will pay hundreds to thousands of dollars to enhance their natural self. Sadly, that which was created by Creation itself, uniquely divine & beautiful, is being skewed and altered, injected and reconstructed. I see it every day….thousands spent for the best of the best procedures, doctors, stylists and beauty artists.
Hollywood will continue to convince us that we can all look like a celebrity; steps A + B + C + $$$ + material possessions + procedures = Beautiful. No wonder our perception of beauty is distorted. The Truth of it all, a healthy body and mind is a healthy HEART. A healthy, happy HEART is LIFE! On the other hand, we mustn’t denote or judge or deny an individual’s desire to look and feel beautiful; it enhances the quality of life, to love oneself inside and out! Yes, celebrate your beauty! I always speak about self love. It’s ok to fall in love with yourself! I love that I am able to remind so many who struggle with image that YOU are beautiful just the way you are as well as inspire growth and hard work to lead active, healthy lifestyle as well! This in turn gives myself confidence and enhances my own light within as I help remind others of their own beauty.
HAPPINESS IS THE BEST MAKEUP.
“Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with Love, Grace, and Gratitude.” ~ Denis Waitley
You cannot BE your job, clothes, car, boyfriend, ethnicity, bank account, your “situation”; it’s not who or what you are. When you live a life UNattached to these outer things, NO LONGER searching out there to define your happiness, you NO longer are left feeling empty, defeated, unimportant or self depricated. That is proof!, reminding you this outer “stuff” does not define you because the whole definition of happiness is within YOU. YOU are the ONLY one who can provide, create, understand the essence of happiness for yourself. Nothing and definitely no one else can do that for YOU. You may take these circumstances only to build meaningful a relationship with your Truest self within, resulting in a happier, healthier, better quality relationship to Life itself … as a reflection of YOU.
Much ❤, CcL #BelieveAndBecome
Influenced in an exalting way ….
What does it really mean to be inspired? And even more, to be an inspiration? We all struggle with our personal daily battles, whether emotionally, intellectually, financially, creatively, spiritually, and physically but amidst our conceived limitations, we all desire inspiration in many forms, whether we realize it or not. A reason to get out of bed, get excited, and GO! We should all aspire to inspire and to be inspired….and in fact, we all do on some level. To be inspired, I believe, is to be IN SPIRIT in all you do. So if you seek inspiration and greatness in your life, see the beauty, the light and God’s greatness in everyone and everything.
When I recognize an honest moment of inspiration it can be the most liberating, powerful feeling. I come alive in that moment of clarity! Sometimes the moment reveals an obvious reason as to why I am enlightened or simply happy. Other times, I’m not exactly sure why I suddenly become so intrigued, uplifted, then motivated by someone or some thing. I’m then opened to, perhaps, a new way of thinking, doing or being the best me I can be… feeling inspired leads to enlightenment: awakening that intellectual or spiritual light within you. When was the last time you felt inspired or saw the light*???
What if…..we utilized every moment of inspiration? Rather than feel the power of inspiration and let it pass, when you see another individual succeed or do something exalting, creative or inspiring that subconsciously or consciously uplifts you, it is a beautiful reminder; you, too, can find that same passion in something within you. The greater inspired you become, the more others are inspired by you. Others will reflect your light when your heart radiates Love. Love is inspiration! You are Inspiration! “To be inspired is great. To Inspire is incredible.”
Start out simple: As I write this, I’ve been observing a photograph of two women, best of friends, carefree, laughing hysterically in each other’s company. I thought to myself, what a beautiful, authentic captured moment. “I’d like to be more creative but I don’t have an eye for photography.” I subconsciously shut down the Creator within me before even giving myself a chance. Whether it’s photography you appreciate, a marathon that seems impossible to complete, a charity you want to be involved in, auditioning for a play, taking a dance class, etc etc etc, get up and Go!
I ask myself, how often do I actually act on my moments of inspiration? Quite frankly, I fail at this daily yet succeed at it eventually, inevitably. I’ve written on the power of just saying YES and all the possibilities this simple word can open you up to! One step further, when I discover new potentials I never even knew I had within myself, it always began with a moment of inspiration. I most likely took a risk and tried to DO something, BE something outside my comfort zone. I’ll then say to myself, “I should SAY YES to more often”…another simple motto I try to stay True to. Give yourself permission to be BOLD, Alive & brilliant! Say YES! to yourself. If you are admiring a painting and captivated by the creative process that made that piece of art possible, embrace your curiosity and admiration. Perhaps you aren’t going to be the next Picasso but you may never know your hidden potentials without picking up that paint brush and applying color to your canvas to discover your genius. It begins with taking that first step into the unknown which always leads to new opportunity. Limitless possibilities!
Obviously, our goal is to stay focussed and succeed in one area on our lives but many times we may limit ourselves to the things we “think” we can or can NOT do. I’ve never been to keen on horseback riding, in fact it doesn’t excite me. I can fully send love and appreciate one’s passion for anything but you won’t see me training to be a jockey any time soon. However, I’ve always lived at the beach, I love the ocean, water, sand everything about it and I’m actually intrigued with becoming one with God’s creation, nature. As I’m writing this I realize I have said forever, “I love surfing, I should surf!” It inspires me. You might see me catching waves soon
I have learned that people, places and life itself is one big inspiration. Open your eyes, all around you, magical moments are happening for YOU and because of YOU. Beautiful moments are for you to absorb, experience, appreciate and when you get that overwhelming happy, tingly, kind of sparkly moment of YES! I am inspired! Act on it. Stay inspired & act now! If you don’t see results immediately, continue…growth & progress is always happening in the action of right now. Believe. Receive. & Live your Life INSPIRED! #BELIEVEANDBECOME
BELIEVE AND BECOME supports and promotes Dove’s self-esteem education to help free the next generation from self-inhibiting, “self-limiting beauty stereotypes.”
The Believe And Become mission has been developed to enhance one’s Self-Esteem and to make a real change in the way individuals perceive beauty and embrace their own unique image. Dove’s self-esteem fund targets young girls, expressing “When they feel positive about themselves and the way they look, they are more likely to engage in life, enjoy social interactions and live up to their full potential.” B&B wants to expand! We ask you to take part in supporting ALL children and young adults with disabilities to widen and enhance our perception of what we perceive to be beautiful. Too many kids and young adults do not reach their full potential due to lack of self-confidence and self-esteem. Now, imagine adding a physical disfigurement that inhibits every day activities and abilities that do not look like, let alone function like the rest of the world. Children with disabilities including limb loss, paralysis and physical disfigurement may incrreasingly develop image disorders, social isolation, misconcieved occupational limitations, identity complexes, issues on sexuality, social acceptance/confidence and psychiatric disturbances such as body dimorphic disorder or depression.
Self-Esteem is central to everything we do and has an effect on every aspect of a person’s life. It affects behavior and thoughts. It changes how you feel about and value yourself. The level of our self esteem determines how we operate in life – how we interact with others. It determines our goals and what we strive for, our achievements, and our satisfaction and happiness in life. Increasing numbers of children develop low self-esteem from developed complexes about looks, as young as 5 years old. In a society believed to be an image-obsessed culture, self-esteem education can enhance and introduce our future generations to embrace their flaws, BELIEVE in themselves and BECOME who they want to BE.
To make change possible, we can all play a role to help free ourselves and the next generation from beauty stereotypes; one child, one person, one compliment at a time. Inspiring each other and others. It could be as simple as sending a word of encouragement to a young boy or girl in your life or supporting self-esteem education in your community. The B&B mission promotes groups, organizations and individuals who are positive role models for our youth and disabled community. Focussing our efforts to foster POSITIVE, image-related self-esteem to girls and boys, with or without a disability, will create a solid foundation for our youth, establish self-confidence and inspire young generations to reach their full potential—no longer defined by loss, disability, “flaws” or poor self-esteem. ”By mentoring the next generation to celebrating real beauty in ourselves and others, we can open a world of possibilities for children everywhere.”
B&B SOCIAL MISSION: BUILD SELF ESTEEM AMONGST YOUNG BOYS AND GIRLS WITH DISABILITY, DISEASE OR ANY PHYSICAL DISORDER. It is my mission to continue to provide the tools and support to individuals, groups and organizations. Off the top of my head, a couple resources include:
- Dove Self-Esteem Programme: Building positive self-esteem in girls everywhere.
- The Challened Athletes Foundation: “Established in 1997, the Challenged Athletes Foundation recognizes the athletic greatness inherent in all people with physical challenges and supports their athletic endeavors by providing unparalleled sports opportunities that lead to success in sports — and in life.”
- Paddy Rossbach Youth camp: ”To make a difference in the lives of children with limb loss and limb difference by increasing their self-confidence and self-esteem through a traditional and supportive summer camp experience.”
- http://www.LoveYourFlawz.com: “A place to share all of your amazing, unique flaws…learn to embrace and love them. Imperfect is the new perfect.”
- Center on Research for Women with Disabilities (CROWD): Promote, develop, and disseminate information to improve the health and expand the life choices of women with disabilities.
*I am always seeking groups, organizations and foundations to support and connect with. Please be in touch and collectively we will help change lives.
“Imagine a world where beauty is a source of confidence, not anxiety.” ~ Dove LOVE OUR CHILDREN. LOVE OURSELVES. REDEFINING BEAUTY.
“…She still speaks to the little girl who wanted to be an artist, a doctor, a poet, a wing-walker. She listens when that little girl talks, when she paints pictures of the clouds, when she draws something magical in sidewalk chalk. She makes her every day a place for old dreams and new dreams, dreams that tower and dreams that whisper…. I AM HER.” WE are all meant to SHINE as children do. We do no serve to the world and others around you by shrinking or playing small. There is nothing enlightened by keeping your TRUE gifts inside. Do not die with your music still within. Share your harmony with the world!
Have unfailing Faith in YOURSELF.
When you commit and fully believe in what you love to do, in your passions, the world too will be a believer in you! I observe, when greater awareness and recognition expands for an individual, it is a result of their own belief in how amazing their product is; their product being themselves. How do we become our own biggest fan and reveal, even promote our gifts to the Universe for the good of others and ourselves? Believe in SELF! Know your purpose is worthy of sharing with the world!!!
We all want to feel relevant in this Lifetime, whether in relationships, our job, our purpose to wake up every day. We all are here to make our own mark on this world. In truth, you are a living legend! Right now. Maybe you want to be the greatest mother, father, sister, daughter, actor, dancer, CEO, boss, employee, whatever roles we take on in this life, our purpose is fueled by relevance and making a difference for the good of others. And at the same time, who or what makes it relevant or purposeful is YOU, and only YOU. You create your own perceptions and interpretations of who “hears” you and “sees” you as significant. NO ONE dictates your significance in this Universe but you. If you feel honest, true and simply good about your work, LIVING your legend, you create and confirm your own relevance.
Most of us may resist putting ourselves “out there” in fear of rejection. But what if that “fear” didn’t exist? Instead of this self-imposed emotion, “FEAR”, replace it with embracing the unknown; trusting the moment and being receptive to where you place yourself day to day. Would you approach your passion and your life differently today? When you feel truly proud of something there’s a sense of freedom that comes with it, where you do not have to prove to one person just how incredibly awesome your doings are in life…You just ARE when you do it for the Love. Finding that is the first success. Simply ask yourself, when I am most at peace, happiest? Be Honest. Be True. Is it honest and worthy to you? You’ll be surprised then, who too will be a believer in you. At that point, you will appreciate the praise but don’t care to give others the credit anymore with letting their perceptions define you.
Remember, Truth will always shine through and reveal itself. I’ve fallen into underestimating the work I have invested in my life (“not enough”), especially as an artist and amputee, but I have also celebrated my talents and strengths, giving myself permission to feel accomplished and worthy! The Truth is, the more confident and respect I have for my own efforts, talents and unique qualities, the respect I feel from others is a pure reflection of how I perceive myself. Today, focus on all the GREATness that you are and have accomplished thus far. Anything and everything that YOU productively did that got yourself to where you are today, is a result created by you. No one person outside yourself got you there. The recognition and Love you deserve or seek is through YOU.
Living in LA, I sadly see talented, worthy, incredible human beings underestimate, compare themselves, then lose themselves in seeking recognition from the one’s they perceive to be “better” (rich, famous, cool) or more “recognized” (LIKED) than they. Be careful on the emphasis you put on how others perceive you or your art/passion. They do not CREATE you unless you let them. Why would you start creating something only to let others finalize the the work YOU did for you, by letting them define it’s worthiness? It makes no sense. You did it. Own it, unattached from what “they” say, “they” think or “they” feel. Be a BELIEVER in YOU because you are the Creator of your OWN life.
“THE FUTURE belongs to those who BELIEVE in the BEAUTY of their OWN DREAMS.”