The above quote: : ““Remember to breathe. It is after all, the secret of life.” …
Posts published in October 2018
Meet Martina: a 20-something, first-generation college graduate born, raised and recently returned to the Windy City.
In her own words…
“I used to think that 23 would be my year…
I’d have my own place, own car, be well into my career and finally able to keep a steady gym regimen. I’m 24 now stumbling sloppily into 25 and I’ve achieved none of the later. Fingers crossed for 32.
Compared to the average 20-something, my resume may be beefier than some but make no mistake— I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing. We are told that these are the best years of our lives but they don’t always feel the best. I think we all hope that this motion of self-doubt will dissipate with age but as I inch toward a quarter-century I am learning to accept that it will be here forever.
Am I doing enough with my life? Am I making enough money? Does this outfit make me look fat…and can I really pull off this red lipstick?
This confusion around if I am enough in comparison to others is always there behind the surface keeping my nose warm and my eyes alert. I have learned that where self- doubt is constant, self-confidence must be too although it is easier said than done. Switching between the two narratives takes only a minute.
So, the next time you are stuck or unsure of yourself slap on some red lipstick and fake it til’ you make it.
I remember moving cross-country after graduation, my life consisting of two suitcases and a duffle bag. I was ready for the world and surely it was ready for me too. My collegiate success made me overly confident; I thought that I would apply for the job I wanted and that would be it. That was not it. I quickly got used to rejection without being rejected: no email, no callback, only uncertainty, and doubt.
That summer I discovered that crying in the shower is best because your roommates are less likely to hear. Instead of waking up proud I woke up thinking, what am I doing? As a kid, I dreamed of the possibilities I could have but as a college graduate, I was overwhelmed by them. One moment feeling like I am on top of the world and can do anything, the next crying in my pool because I am unsure of my place in It.
The fear and uncertainty of what to do next and what am I doing right now are constant so I embrace it. I let it excite me the same way that watching a scary movie excites me giving me the rush of adrenaline I need to get out of bed even on the bad days. It is only through fear and uncertainty that I have gotten this far and through the same that I will continue to go further.
Put one foot in front of the other and keep moving.”
Meet Debi (@debililly), we share a mutual love of family, Chicago, as well as magical Nantucket. This Chief Eventeur has been designing perfect events for decades. She has quite the high profile clientele list, but also regularly shares tips on how anyone can take their events from “grocery to gorgeous.”
From a very early age, Debi drew her party planning inspiration from her grandmother (Gigi). “My friends would come over, see all our beautiful family celebrations, gorgeous table set for the holiday, beautiful presents overflowing under the tree, and exclaim – ‘I’ve never seen anything like this!’ Gigi always makes everything so thoughtful, full of tradition, and creates moments to cherish.”
Her career began before Debi even graduated college as she was planning away; sorority sister’s weddings, designing flowers, invitations and more. She loves to weave a creative thread into all the planning and design details – from start to finish.
Born and raised in Chicago, Debi has loved the Hotel InterContinental Chicago Magnificent Mile for many years. She chose this location for her photoshoot as the beautiful hotel is a family favorite. “Complete with a Great Gatsby swimming pool party vibe and gorgeous family suites we sink in and unwind together. It is rich with gorgeous architecture and full of 1920s history. My kids love to spend the weekends in hotel robes nibbling room service as they pool party, while I throw parties and weddings downstairs in the gorgeous ballroom.”
#Ad Oprah Magazine November 2018 with JC Penney photo of Amy Boyle by Kristen Smith…
(in her own words)
I found Pilates twelve years ago after a large weight loss and a stress fracture from running, and knew within months that I wanted to learn it from the inside out. I had done many kinds of exercise before, but none made me feel the way Pilates did. It was as if I were suddenly introduced to dozens of cool relatives I had never met before, and now we were all learning to communicate and get to know each other. My body was a family, there to support me, and I them.
In the 5 years we’ve been working together, Marcia has supported me through two pregnancies. During recovery, she helped me reconnect not only with my body, but also with my identity beyond that of a mother. – Ashley (pictured with Marcia below)
After a year long training program, I began teaching, and soon after took on a Prenatal class. It was scary at first. The American Medical Association guidelines for teaching pregnant women was a list of “DON’Ts”. But where were the DOs? After all, pregnancy isn’t a pathological condition; why would we treat it as such? After taking further training with a woman named Carolyne Anthony, I realized pregnant bodies were strong, not things to be afraid of, that they had changing needs throughout the trimesters and, equally important, in the first year postnatal. I also realized that the exercise and healthcare communities were failing women on many levels, and that I could help bridge those gaps in information and healing.
Too many of us are tuned in to the external noises that tell us how to look, what to do with our bodies, instead of our internal voice—the collective voice of our body, our family of parts. Too many women live with pain and discomfort. Too many new moms don’t know what to expect of childbirth, recovery. Too many of us don’t know enough about how menopause affects us. Too many of us store the mental and physical scars of sexual assault, or abuse. Too many women settle for buying adult diapers instead of getting pelvic floor therapy.
As a Pilates instructor who specializes in Pre and Postnatal, I want to change all that.
A few months ago the ACOG (American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology) put out a statement revising their recommendations for postnatal care. In the statement they equated past treatment of pregnancies “as if the baby were the candy and the mother was the wrapper,” thrown away after the birth. We can do better, they said, and I agree.
After ten years of teaching all kinds of bodies, and well over five hundred pregnancies under my belt, I can say that I teach Pilates because I believe my job is to educate all people on their bodies and empower them to improve their mind/body relationships. When we learn to listen to our bodies, when we understand those voices, we can advocate for their rights and needs. I’m not just teaching Pilates, I’m building an army of educated, healthy women, and they are ready to fight for what they deserve.
Marcia teaches at Frog Temple Pilates in Chicago
Her blog: GreatBalancingAct