My Greatest Love Affair

Today is a monumental day. For it marks 5 months from the most devastating breakup of my life.

No, not from a dude! {…They’re all canceled.}

From my one true love… Los Angeles.

The heavily polluted smog = my Love Potion Number 9. I miss being woken up at 6 AM to the glorious sound of jack-hammering construction {or my next door neighbor jack-hammering his boyfriend}. I miss the tinge of fear that traveled down my spine each time I realized I hadn’t locked my car door & a schitzo 6’5 male wearing a fuchsia wig, “Barbie Girl” crop top, and sparkle spandex short shorts with his nether regions peeking out the bottom approached my Mini Cooper at a red light on pink roller skates, singing + gyrating to Beyonce whilst knocking on windows in hopes of making a quick buck. I miss the look of disgust my neighbors would give me when I had the audacity to smile & ask them how they were doing in the elevator. I miss paying $20 for one shitty well tequila soda at Poppy, accidentally running into someone & spilling said drink everywhere– realizing that person I just doused in Jose Cuervo is Justin Bieber, and then at that exact same moment, a surprise performance from G-Eazy ensues {True story} And yes… I would even do anything to be back in that traffic. That horrendeous traffic that would take me 1.5 hours to get from West Hollywood to Santa Monica {9.2 miles} each weekend. Because guess what? Watching that technicolor sunset with a cocktail in my hand & the ocean air frizzing my weave was worth every last second of road rage.

I get a lot of questions from girls asking for advice on moving to LA + also ?’s from girls who are thinking about moving back to their hometowns & wondering what my experience has been like being back home…

So here’s the REAL tea… When I headed West, I thought my life would be like Miley Cyrus “Party in the USA!” Hopped out the Coop on Santa Monica Blvd with a dream in my lululemon crops. I had a perfect view of the Hollywood sign from my insanely fabulous rooftop terrace. I had a Trader Joe’s {my personal heaven on earth, if you didn’t already know} 10 steps from my apartment lobby. I had my quintessential tall, blonde, model best friend in tow, our combined closet of Revolve + Rag & Bone {but mostly Forever 21 and Brandy Melville… not for long though, we proclaimed! We were going to be RICH!} & lived one stone’s throw from celebrity hot spot, Delilah. EVERYONE in my building was under 35 with model looks. The only thing fat in the building {besides Andy Milinokas– the self-proclaimed “Fat Prince”} were the bank accounts, considering the sky high rent prices & ALL luxury cars in the parking garage. If they could do it, I could do it… Right?! I thought that posting one crisp photo sipping a $13 Lavender Hemp-Ballsac Milk Lite Froth No Foam Latte at Alfred on Melrose would bring me instant Insta fame. That rocking my finest destroyed Fashion Nova jeans + a leather jacket at Warwick would have all the girls flocking to me to be my friend. That I could waltz into any establishment & they’d hire me on the spot. All it took was one pervy paparazzi photog gassing me up by taking my photo as I left Catch one evening {100% chance he was just testing the light for when an actual human worth photographing strutted through} and I thought I had this whole “LA thing” in the bag. Ahhh… now I see why everyone moves here!

……HA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Heaping Dose of Reality #1: Hey… Guess what, sis….? YOU ARE NOT A MODEL!!!!!!!!!

Like 90% of other Millennial girls who make their pilgrimage West, I had hopes that a byproduct of moving to Tinseltown would be becoming an influencer. I mean, I had the perfect backdrop! Who WOULDN’T want to follow along on my glamorous adventure in Hollywood?! Ahhhh yes, brands would be BEGGING to pay me thousands of dollars to post their products {To who? My 3K followers!?} Yeah… So it turns out that’s NOT how it works. At all. It also turns out that I’m an awkward fucking turtle, who not only doesn’t know how to take a picture, but also had zero social media // blogging skills. ZIP. ZILCH. NADA, HONEY.

This posed to be a problem. A slight kink in my riveting Instagram career, if you will. I always had a dream of starting a blog, but my passion for writing had been on the back burner for many years. No one had ever read anything that I had written {except for the handful of ex boyfriends who got their grimy little paws on my journals + got their feelings hurt. LOL} So tbh, I thought that no one would care. Or be entertained. Or buy anything I suggested. Or whatever my intention to start a blog was at the time. I didn’t want to put myself out there, I just wanted to have my rent paid by posting the fact that I liked Too Faced Born This Way Foundation, attend Blogger Brunches, take boomerangs of the waves kissing the sand behind a plate of yellowtail sashimi at Nobu Malibu, get an invite to SoHo House, and have boxes stacked to the ceiling of free clothes + makeup from PR packages. I truly thought that this was what it was all about.

Until one day I was bold enough to be REAL, raw + vulnerable and share a little piece of myself on the internet, and my life changed forever. It took me 27.5 years, but on that day, I found my purpose: Writing. Because getting feedback from girls telling me that I inspired, entertained, or provided them with even one ounce of value– fills my heart with enough joy to last 100 years. I think I’m going to chase that high for as long as I live. My superficial “dream” of social media success changed and evolved into something so much more meaningful, and I couldn’t be happier that it took that sharp right turn.

LA Round 1 taught me that if you don’t work tirelessly, around the clock, chasing your dreams + taking MASSIVE ACTION to achieve success… You gotta go home! Peace out! THAT’S the TRUE tea as to why everyone is buzzing around & trying so hard– That’s also the exact reason that I couldn’t stay. My efforts weren’t nearly enough, and it is sink or MF swim. The reason that my parking garage was filled with 30 year olds whippin’ G-Wagons wasn’t because they were on clearance in LA… It’s because everyone WORKED HARD to achieve the success that they desired.

Since that day that I hit post & decided to make it my life’s mission to see this little baby blog to fruition, I have STUDIED this craft– especially after being home in AZ the past several months. Ignorance was bliss on that tipsy February evening that I officially started this thing. I truly thought that all I had to do was write a cute story, hit post, and I would magically drive millions of views to my blog each month as long as I wrote great content! WRONG. There is SO much that goes into it. If you’ve tried starting any online biz, I’m sure you found that out very quickly! I have spent THOUSANDS of hours {& dollars}, + truly every waking moment of my LIFE since then {in addition to my full-time job}, trying to figure out how to run a successful blog. There is no manual. Only millions of half-assed articles that run you around in circles, skimming only the very very surface level of blogging. Or expensive eCourses that over promise & under-deliver. But the process has been SO valuable to me. {And hopefully others in the future, as I am documenting EVERYTHING I’m learning along the way!} I’ve been undercover for the past few months, working to the bone behind the scenes, and I’m praying that it will be worth it. It’s pretty crazy & can be lowkey discouraging when you dedicate your entire being to something for the better part of a year, with not much to show for it. But something tells me that’s just part of the process.

My point is: Pursue your dreams, but seriously take a REAL inventory of what you’re getting yourself into. If you want to move to LA with the intention of becoming an actor but have never acted in your life, buckle up. Model but the only person who has ever taken your photo is your very own right arm, selfie style? Good luck. Work in fashion? Get ready to accept an offer of $13/Hour for your dream job– because EVERY girl moves to LA to work in fashion, and there will always be a girl willing to accept a super atrocious salary if their parents are still funding their life. Figure out what you’re going to do. BEFORE you arrive, because trust me… NO ONE is going to teach you. And if you don’t? It’s likely that you’ll get eaten alive and maybe even laughed out of town. It really isn’t a “wing it” type of place. You HAVE to know what you want & where you’re heading. If you don’t, it’s very easy to get lost. Keep the main thing the main thing, don’t try to dabble in everything & major in nothing because… BEEN THERE, and it will get you nowhere fast.

If you dare to ditch the safe, comfy, mainstream life in exchange for an adventure off the beaten path aka dream chasing, I have to warn you that there is only one guarantee: You WILL be beaten down, discouraged, told that you’re an idiot {“No, but what are you going to do for a REAL job…?”}, told that it’s impossible/there’s too much competition, question whether or not you’re good enough, burn out, feel like giving up, THE. WHOLE. NINE. But what’s more painful? The pain of trying and trying and trying to make something of yourself with the chance that ONE DAY {maybe tomorrow, maybe years from now} it ends up working out and your wildest dreams become your reality…? OR the pain of working the rest of your life punching a clock, building someone else’s dream, wishing that you had done it for yourself?

WHO THE HELL DO I THINK I AM….? TONY ROBBINS???

To wrap it up, my slice of advice for those who are thinking about moving to LA:

#1: HAVE A BIG BIG BIG BIG BIG DREAM THAT YOU WANT MORE THAN ANYTHING.
Something that will keep you going on the hard days. Because there will be a lot of those.

#2 HAVE A SHIT TON OF MONEY.
Only move to LA if you’re prepared to struggle. Financially, emotionally & spiritually, lol. No, seriously. When I say it’s expensive, I mean… I wouldn’t even consider moving unless you’re definitely going to be making six-figures. I also wouldn’t advise cutting corners and living in a suburb/weird area. It’s not the same. If you want a luxurious quality of life that’s also {relatively} affordable, move to Scottsdale, Dallas, or San Diego. Not Burbank {My humble opinion} The cool thing about LA is that there are so many cool areas, find the neighborhood that you vibe with, that is filled with like-minded people that you might want to be friends with, and has places you’ll want to hangout at in your free time. Because as much as I LOVE THE BUNGALOW {when I die, bury me at that glorified frat house, plz} it was a major pain {and $$$} to get down there every weekend. Wouldn’t have had that problem if I chose a home closer to the shore & was a West Side bish {maybe next time?} Anyways, live somewhere nice, safe, has parking, ameneties, and somewhere that you LIKE, because unless you’re totally ballin’ outta control, you’re going to be spending a LOT of time there.

#3 YOU NEED SOME REALLY THICCCC SKIN.
People are generally NOT nice. Not to say that everyone will be mean to you… But if you come from a place where everyone is sugary sweet & polite, just like I do, you’re going to be in for a rude awakening when people straight up ignore you when you smile or say “hi”. Common courtesy and basic manners aren’t necessarily the norm. But my B-E-S-T advice: don’t let the city make you cold. Get a little edge, deff stick up for yourself & don’t let anyone walk all over you, but hold onto your sweet, sunny demeanor with everything you’ve got! People REALLY appreciate cool, nice chicks out there. Being a snob just isn’t charming any way you cut it.

#4 LEVEL UP, LEVEL UP, LEVEL UP…
When I crossed state lines, I thought I was looking pretty cute. Just remember, you may think you look good now, but the second you step into the 90210 don’t be surprised if you’re hit with crippling anxiety when you see the VISIONS of perfection just like I did. Perfect skin, hard bodies, impeccable style, effortlessly chic hair, and designer everything. The good news: I wanted to be in the running with these types, so I figured out REAL QUICK how to get myself on point– & on a budget 😉 Stay tuned for more tips on how to level yourself up, at home, with DIY treatments because… $400 facials and $2,500 extensions + haircuts just weren’t in the cards for me, but a girl still had to figure out how to make it W-E-R-K!

K. So now for the ladies who, like me, moved to a big city thinking that that was IT, but then their hearts began to tell them to go home… Now they ask me “Should I leave, too!?” Ugh, it’s hard to say. In hindsight, I didn’t try hard enough to make LA work for me. Seriously. I doubted myself, I didn’t know what I was doing, and I DEFINITELY wasn’t making enough money. But I also didn’t TRY very hard in the end to change my situation. I didn’t have the concise vision or the drive that I do today. I also had a lot of outside influences drawing me back. I had a lot of loose ends that I am SO happy I came home to tie up. I felt in the midst of a quarter-life crisis, pulled in several different directions. I mean, I was about to be 28, why wasn’t I married like my friends yet? Throw into the mix that my ex {who I moved to California to run away from} was begging me to come home, throwing empty promises my way, giving me such a hope for a really nice, suburban, picket fence future. Safety. Comfort. The things that were really missing in my life in LA. I felt like I wasn’t cut out for the super fast paced life…

So I went home. I don’t know if you’ve ever visited Arizona, but it’s seriously a Utopia. Beautiful weather, people, restaurants, fun nightlife, everything is really really NICE! My life is absolutely amazing. I have zero complaints. I love my family, friends, job, day to day life… But something is missing. I’m different. I wouldn’t change one thing about the way things unfolded. I had a TASTE of my dream. I gave it up to “follow my heart” back to a boy. It didn’t work out. The hardships that followed made me stronger than I ever even knew I could be. I’m smarter. I’m wiser. I’m forgiving. I’m understanding. Today, I can seriously call that kid who shattered my heart, my friend. I started back at SQUARE ONE. And I rebuilt. Every single day, one brick at a time, I’m rebuilding. Maybe I came back, for a comeback?

This weekend in Vegas, when we sat down at dinner, K turned to me and said, “You’re so funny… Every time people ask you where you’re from, you pause. It’s like you want to say LA…”

So I think to myself… Is that because secretly, deep down, I still wish that WAS my home…?

I guess now, all I need’s a hundred million dollars & a bad bitch. Only now, that bad bitch is me…. EG 2.0.

This is a funeral for my lululemon Range Rover Paradise Valley housewife dreams.
PG EG is dead & gone.
I’m ready to give it my all to make it happen for myself.
Again.
XO


XO
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3 Responses
  • Jess
    November, 8, 2018

    Damn girl, your honesty is incredibly refreshing. Thank you for sharing! <3

  • alwaysusebutter
    November, 15, 2018

    Hey! I hear you on the discouragement and anxieties of devoting so much time to something you really want to work out and not immediately getting the rewards. I’m in the same boat and it’s so frustrating! But I think the best thing you can do is just keep at it. It’s the tough times that makes success, most people quit when it gets hard & that’s when we relentless bitches have our chance to step up and show the universe that we’re in it for the long haul by NOT quitting and just working even harder. (yeah and now here I am thinking I’m Tony Robbins or something sooo!) Anyway – looking forward to following you on your journey! See you on the success train 😉

  • Natasha Kalita
    November, 27, 2018

    Your brutal honesty is so refreshing and will get you noticed! You’re a great writer, funny as hell, and things will happen for you! I can feel it.
    Xo

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