From the Heart:
The Secret

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I’ve been stuck on this post for the last few days, mostly because I don’t like to publish something just for the sake of content. For me, it has to be genuine and thoughtful and true. And I’ve had something genuine and thoughtful and true to share, but I’ve been thinking a lot about how I want to share it. Last Friday, after a rough week of work, I took one of my favorite neighborhood walks to treat myself to dessert. During my walk, I returned a phone call to my younger sister and for reasons unknown, allowed a conversation that I generally try to avoid with her because it’s a topic we just can’t see eye to eye on, ever. I was exhausted and stressed out, but somewhere in between spoonfuls of graham cracker frozen yogurt and a lecture on self-love from my well-earned perch as the “older and wiser” sibling, I had a moment. Though we were talking about her, the moment was all mine. Because it was then, on a warm Friday evening in late-September (on the brink of a full moon, that full moon), that I realized I had finally grown up. It was like all the lessons of yesteryear which had been marinating for the last decade decided to seep through my stubborn exterior that had been clinging to youth, to learning the hard way. And then, just like that, everything clicked. There was no more steadfast resistance, only clarity. And I didn’t even have to stare down all the mistakes of my past and acknowledge I was wrong because those silly lessons had already been lived and learned, which of course, is what brought me to that moment on Friday night. I’m a huge fan of coming-of-age novels and the like so surely you’d think I’d have had some preconception of how it was supposed to happen – this growing up thing. Admittedly, I (mistakenly) assumed it had happened, years ago. Only now, of course, I know it didn’t.

In case you’re wondering, and entertaining suspicions that I might be slightly crazy, I’m not so stuck on the moment. It’s what happened after. For the past six days, I have felt more free than I have ever felt in my life, like the heavy cloud of anxiety, confusion, frustration, and uncertainty that had been hovering over me at varying heights for the past ten+ years of my life had finally vanished. And every day since last Friday has been the most glorious day. I haven’t done anything even remotely special or out of the ordinary. Nothing in my life has changed, except the way I see things. I now know I don’t have to carry around the past like it’s some heavy burden, or shrink with fear at the thought of what lies ahead or how the hell I’m going to get there. It all feels quite simple. Light. In terms of weight and illumination.

Mostly, I feel possessed by the strongest sense that from here on out, its only forward – that I’ve crossed a previously impenetrable barrier and there is no going back. But what’s most brilliant about it all, is I have no desire to. On this side of life, we live and let live. No expectations. One day at a time. To be sure, there is still much learning, much growing to be done. New lessons, but of a different variety.

As a full-fledged adult now (read sarcasm please), I can vouch for this: the secret is simple, but apparently, it might seem like a complicated physics equation until you’re ready to see it’s just plain English.

In any event, here it is: You own your life. Nobody else does. Not your parents, not your partner, not your employer. You have the power to be whoever you want to be, to do whatever you want to do, and there is little gratification in delaying it until some uncertain date in the future that may or may not ever arrive. To quote Fitzgerald, “You can change or stay the same.” The point is, you can’t sit around waiting for things to happen. Nothing you ever want is going to come knocking on your door. It’s never that easy.  You’ve got to go out there and get it yourself. No matter what barriers lie ahead. And once you take back your life, nothing can stand in the way of your happiness. There is nothing – I repeat – nothing – stopping you, but you.

And this too: You are love in its purest, simplest form. It is every part of you. You don’t need to look outside yourself to find it. Share it generously. But when it comes to receiving it, remember first that the only kind worthy is the one that matches yours – pure and simple. If it’s processed, its not real. And as is the case with most things that aren’t real, it won’t last. And it will make you sick. And probably break your heart. Maybe your spirit too.

And finally, this: Everything is energy. Let yours be positive, always. And if it’s not, find a way to make it. It comes back to you in the form it’s released.

And, if you’re on the other side, don’t worry so much, it’s all going to come together when it should, and even all the bad mistakes, terrible decisions, poor judgment, will add up to something. Truly, they form the bridge that allows you to cross over. Don’t worry about rushing these things though. The universe has a plan. Promise, promise.

Happy living!

xoxoxo

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From the Closet:
School Uniform

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T Alexander Wang dress, LF stores plaid shirt, Isabel Marant booties, Gucci bag, Free People necklace, Valley sunnies

I went to Catholic high school which means I am all too familiar with the standard plaid uniform. This is obviously a different take on it. The grown up version. And what I’ll be wearing all fall. Pretty much.

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From the Heart:
Believe

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A few years ago, spurred mostly by boredom, I turned a would-be romantic evening with a suitor I had little interest in into an opportunity to get a new tattoo. So before dinner and drinks, the word “believe” was inscribed on my wrist to serve as a permanent reminder that sometimes you just have to let go of the things in life you are desperate to control and have faith that everything is going to happen exactly the way it should, when it should. Most probably I had no idea what was coming for me that night on Hollywood Boulevard when my innocent date watched in awe as the word was inked onto my body. Surely I couldn’t have. At the time, it was all fun and games. Then one day it stopped being fun and games. That was nearly three years ago now. Once before, I’ve written about my monthly horoscope (here), because at the time, I was in a hole so deep I had to cling to some hope that things would get better, even something so seemingly remote as celestial bodies in distances beyond comprehension and their otherworldly influence on my present reality. This time, I’m not in a hole at all. To the contrary, I’m on the ascent.  I’m writing about it again though to emphasize the power of faith – of believing. According to my September horoscope, Saturn is to depart from my love sector on September 17th, not to return again until 2041. Pesky little Saturn has been causing me trouble in love for the past several years, but perhaps for my benefit as it’s presence was to teach me life lessons. And life lessons I’ve been taught! Once Saturn leaves, I will “see that I’m infinitely lovable and ready to love again.” Except that I already have. In the last three years, I’ve had disappointment after disappointment when it comes to love. On more occasions than I can count I’ve wondered why I repeatedly keep getting dealt a bad hand. When strangers have wondered why I’m single, I’ve brushed off their confusion with a joke about being unlucky in love, though its felt like a scary truth. I’ve analyzed, obsessed, gone practically mad trying to figure out what is wrong with me and why I’m perpetually unlovable to everyone I want to love me. But still, through it all, I’ve held onto the belief that things would get better and when I was ready, the universe would give me what I’ve been waiting for,  and then, no girlfriend, fiance, wife, job, responsibility, ocean, or continent would stand in the way of what was meant to be. And that belief has been the reason I’ve been able to go to sleep alone for some 1400+ nights now, not willing to settle for some lesser form of love. It’s been lonely, oh god, it’s been lonely! I’ve had a few Sundays in the last year when I’ve sat on my couch looking at my phone for hours – waiting for what, I don’t know, some form of human contact, I presume. The point is, life isn’t always meant to be the way you want it to be. Sometimes you get dealt a bad hand and sometimes you get dealt ten or twenty. And surely there are many things we can’t explain no matter how hard we may search for reason and truth. But by and large, I have come to believe, that everything happens exactly the way it should, when it should. And until then, you’ve just got to buckle up and enjoy the ride, knowing there will be a few bumps along the way. And yes, you are entitled to moments of self-pity, I’ve had those too, plenty actually. But beyond that, I always arrive at a place where I’m content because I’ve discovered the lesson that was to be learned. So do that too. Discover the lesson that is to be learned.  Just don’t stop believing. Which incidentally, is my favorite song, and also, part of the reason I chose the tattoo.

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From the Closet:
Summer Staple

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One Teaspoon cutoffs, Current/Elliott plaid shirt, Chloe booties, Saint Laurent bag

I’m still trying to lose that last 5 pounds I put on while in Paris, which means plaid shirt tied around my waist has become a summer staple. No, its not there in case I get chilly. It’s been nothing but unbearably hot in LA lately. But it works wonders for covering up my thighs – my always problem area. Tricks of the trade!

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From the Heart:
Evolution

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Since I’ve been back from Paris, I’ve been trying to fit my new self into my old life, and finding, it’s not working. Everything feels small – my clothes, my apartment, my world. Most evidently, has been this disconcerting feeling every time I think of my blog. It felt like it took on a new character when I was free, traveling, sharing my adventures with all of you. And since my return, I’ve been a lot lost trying to figure out how it should evolve to reflect how I’ve changed and grown. When I started four years ago, it was exclusively about fashion – a place to share my inspiration with the world. A few years ago, I started this From the Heart series, because I wanted to share more than fashion with my readers – I wanted to share my life, my thoughts, my challenges. my growth, my insights. And interestingly, that part of this blog has become the part I’m most passionate about. It seems that change worked out well for me because it allowed me to be more authentically Gabrielle. In any event, I’m not in my twenties anymore, and I have a  lot more to say than what I’m wearing and where I found it and how it makes me feel. So, after much thought, I’ve decided to continue the evolution of my blog by sharing other passions in my life more frequently, including my passion for Los Angeles, travel, fitness, design, the outdoors, events, and living a (mostly) healthy lifestyle. I hope you enjoy the changes, and as always, your feedback is most welcome and appreciated, even if you think it’s something I might not want to hear. Happy Monday my loves! xoxo

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