Hey guys! Finally, an update! Sort of.

In this video, I kind of explain my lack of updating.

Hello World! Vlog
I do hope to keep this semi updated as well, and I hope you guys get a chance to watch the video!

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Grad School

Almost a month ago I started grad school. To be completely honest with you, I was terrified. I wasn’t sure what to expect, let alone realize just how much of a time commitment I was making by going back to school. Don’t get me wrong, I love learning. Knowledge is power! But something was still bugging me.

I’m going to grad school to become a licensed marriage, family therapist and a licensed professional clinical counselor. I should be excited about this new career path, right? Yes and no. I was excited because I love back-to-school shopping, but I wasn’t for some unknown reason. It wasn’t until I had this pretty painful conversation with my psychotherapist that everything became clear.

I have had my fair share of friends that have passed away. Each one has  affected me to my core, and I’d be lying if I said otherwise. Each of my friends had made future plans, and while they are in a better place, I’m continuing on with my life. The plans we made will be unfinished plans. The different life events we planned on experiencing together will be ones that I will now experience without them. Realizing that sucks. Why do I get to keep on living? What makes me different?

Enter survivor’s guilt. Never in my life had I expected to lose three friends by the age of 23. This is the time when we are meant to be invincible, and yet their lives ended far too soon. Moving on is hard. We made to hang out, grow up, graduate, start families, and here I am (seemingly) alone.

With this newfound revelation of what has been going on inside my mind for the last several years, I’m trying to move on without guilt. I’m trying to keep the promises we made, because we promised to be more. We promised to make a difference. We promised to be there. It’s not going to be easy. It’s not easy now. I feel this knot welling up in my throat, and I just want to cry because I am still that young girl that lost some of her best friends.

If you have lost a friend to death or a circumstance out of your control, know that you’re not alone. I am here for you. I know the pain. We can get through this together. Take care, friends.

Lots of love and hugs,
Becky Espinoza

Still I’m Missing…

On most Wednesday nights, I go to my church’s young adults group called Ethos. The group is really great, and I’m starting to make really good friends. We started this series called Uphill: The Battle for the Abundant Life.

As we are going through this series, Charles, the Ethos pastor, was talking about how he likes to look at very successful people like Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, etc. He commented on how you can see the fruits of their labor, and one can even say that their lives have reached completion in a sense.

I begin to look at my life, and I know that I am nowhere near complete. There are so many things that I want to do with my life and time. And I mean, where to begin? Counselor, teacher, barista, photographer, writer, awesome girlfriend (some day… Jake suggested that, and more on that on my next post), and so much more.

I have already completed my undergrad career; I got accepted to my dream grad school, and yet I feel like I’m missing something.

I like to take a look at the broken parts of my life from time to time. Rarely is it for a pity party (although, ice cream helps), but it’s to see how despite the crappiest moments in my life, I’m not done and I won’t give up.

In my last post I shared lyrics from The Workday Release’s new album titled City Lights. Let me share once more from the song Damages.

“Don’t count me with the damages just yet; I know that I have fire left.”

I have the fire to do more with my relationships and myself. That drive, that passion comes from my Creator. It is the One who hung the stars that has stirred up the fire that is in my bones. The fire that urges me to be more, to love more, to live outside of myself, and to make a difference in someone’s life.

Maybe you have a fire within you. Maybe you have a passion for something that is crazy. Whatever it may be, I encourage you to pursue that passion and fire. You were created with a purpose. Live out your dreams. Live out your purpose. Know that I am rooting for you! Keep doing you!

Lots of love & hugs,
Becky

Welcomed Changes

I am not one for liking change. Change puts me under a lot of stress, and when I stress, I’m not a great person to be around. I cause problems in my relationships; I procrastinate more (which frankly, I didn’t think was possible); and I just hate to be around myself.

But recently, there have been a series of recent changes that I am okay with, and I actually love the changes.

While I wish different aspects of my life were playing out the way I’d like, the changes happening in other parts of my life are exciting!

I applied to grad school around mid/late January. I heard back from the school for interviews early February. The interviews ended up taking place in the last week of February. That’s when changes started happening.

The Monday before my interviews, I decided that a way to calm my nerves was to go to a concert! I mean great music lifts weary spirits, and I knew that listening to The Workday Release would do just that.

As I drove to LA, I drove by the famous skyline. I began to remember the different times I would drive past it to go visit Paul. It’s so strange not having him around anymore. The change of him not being around is becoming bearable.

When I finally reached the venue, I got to see David play after about three/four years. It was great seeing how much he has grown musically! As his set went on, he played one of his new songs that bears the same title as the album, City Lights. It’s a fun song that talks about the city and trying to make it on your own. The chorus stuck with me.

“Take off, show me the stars
I’m ready to leave; I’m ready to leave the city
I’m flat broke, show me the road to the good life”

As much as I hate change, I didn’t realize that I am craving change. I’m ready to leave. I’m ready for the good life.

A few days later, I had my interviews for grad school. I GOT IN!!! I’m going to be starting a new chapter in my life academically.

A few days after my acceptance, I received a phone call for an interview to be a casual sub for a really great company in their children’s learning center. There might be a change in my professional life as well.

I am getting more responsibility with the high school ministry that I am a part of, and I couldn’t be happier!

I am making friends, and a friendship that I didn’t realize that I even wanted when I first met this individual is flourishing. I cannot wait to see where that leads either!

Change is in the air, and for once, I am thrilled for it.

Lots of love & hugs,
Becky

P.S.
If you get the chance, you should definitely get The Workday Release’s new album City Lights on iTunes, Amazon, and GooglePlay! You will not be disappointed!

Tell Me When My Time’s Up

What is there to say about life?

I always feel like I could be doing so much more with my life, mainly because I know that I can be. I mean don’t get me wrong, binge watching your favorite show on Netflix for the fiftieth time will finally get you to notice that one hair twitch that changed the course of the entire series and ultimately your life is super crucial.

I do not mean that in any serious way, but I just start to question what I could be doing instead of watching The Secret Life of the American Teenager for the tenth time (go ahead and judge, I know it’s ridiculous and I own it). I could finish reading the book I started over the summer, or one of the seven crochet projects I’ve started over the last few years, apply to grad school! Oh, wait… I actually did apply to grad school, and I also have an interview for that… I should start prepping for that…

The thing about life is that we never really realize how short it is until we look back at old calendars with only doctor’s appointments written down, or yearbooks in which maybe five people wrote in it including your two favorite teachers. Maybe it’s not even going through these old mementos, but rather going to a funeral/memorial of someone that you knew.

This happened to me recently. I went to the memorial service of a girl that I went to middle school with. When I first met her, I wasn’t too sure if I even wanted to know who she was because of the people that she hung out with. They weren’t very kind to me, and I wasn’t too sure if she was the same way. Fast-forward a year later, and I am on a bus with her on our way to Mexico on a mission trip. I got to know her really well. She was very kind and empathetic. I liked spending that time with her.

We get back to the States, and we didn’t talk much after that. Life just got crazy busy for both of us, and we lost contact with each other. Several years past and we are in December of 2014. I see a Facebook post saying that she had passed away. I just couldn’t believe it. The sweet girl I met was no longer around.

I sat staring at my computer screen just waiting to feel something. Anything.

Is this real life?

And then it hit me. I felt as though I had been catapulted back into the hotel room I was in on February 23, 2013 when I had two phone calls with two very important people. It was like I could almost hear both Lindsey and Teri saying that Paul had passed away. I felt like everything was still and I could just hear my heart beating. The knot began to form in my throat. I sat in shock.

While I sat at my friend’s memorial service, I kept going back to Paul’s death. This wasn’t to say that I didn’t think of my friend either, it’s just that they both had the same shock factor and it was like I was going through the experience along with this current death.

My friend had plans to make herself better; to make a better life for her daughters. Paul was filming as an extra and he wanted to continue his music. They were actively doing something with their time and lives.

I’m over here shipping Oliver Queen and Felicity Smoak.

I want my life to be meaningful and not just empty calendars with appointments written on them. I want to write a book (about what, I have no clue). I want to be proficient at the ukulele. I want to learn how to be a barista. I want to go to awesome concerts. I want to run a half marathon (training for it counts, right?). I want to fall in love. I want to do things that can help people. I want to change lives.

But to do that, I need to leave my room. I need to stop being lazy.

Oh, Lord, give me strength.

Love & hugs,
Becky

Saying “Goodbye”

Over the last two years, I have had to say “goodbye” to certain people in my life. Some of them were because of personal reasons, people wanting to peace out of my life, and death. I for one am not too fond of goodbyes. I feel like what I had known for so long, what felt so secure, is nothing more than something that can be snatched away.

I was watching the new Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb movie at the theatre by myself (sometimes you just need “me time,” you know?), and there was one particular scene that hit me pretty hard.

In the scene, Robin Williams’ character, Teddy Roosevelt, tells Ben Stiller’s character, Larry Daley, that he and some of the other museum characters are ready for a change. Larry replies with a very emotional, “But I’m not ready!” (see?! No real spoilers!)

I started thinking, how many times have I said that to others? How many times have I thought this when I couldn’t bring myself to say the words?

I began to think of the people I have lost. They seemed to have been ready to go, whether it was by choice or death. The only person in the relationships (platonic, familial, and dating) that wasn’t ready was me.

Often times I think of how I’m not ready to let go of certain things, but I am reminded that even though I may not be ready, others might be. I need to respect that, and let go even when I feel like I can’t. Courage isn’t found in being brave, but is found in going through the scary and painful things.

I know that I am nowhere near brave, let alone courageous. I am just a girl that longs for consistency, stability, just something that will not hurt me. The odds of finding that in life are slim to none. I need to accept that. I need to accept that life is a series of ups and downs; it’s constantly changing.

That’s where Christ steps in. He is the true constant in my life. He hasn’t peaced out on me. He hasn’t told me, “I just can’t be with you right now.” Or, “I can’t do this anymore. I need an out.” He is the most legit thing I have.

And yes, I have felt like sometimes he wasn’t there for me. But how many people have we pushed away only to feel like no one cares? Where my fears, anxiety and doubts have plagued my life, His love and grace abounded so much more.

Now I’m not saying that this all changes my anxiety, but what I am saying is that it continues to push me to a point where I can have courage despite the crappiness of my life. I can go through the scary and painful things in life because even though I may not be ready, I know that Someone is ready.

I know that being courageous isn’t easy, but knowing that there is a constant can make it bearable. I’m not going through it alone, and neither are you.

If you ever need a bro to talk to, or someone to go through life with you, I am totally here for you. I would love to be courageous with you. I can be reached via Twitter (@beckyblendr), Instagram (@beckyblender), Facebook (Becky Espinoza), and Email bec.espinoza@gmail.com. Life isn’t meant to be done alone.

Love & Hugs,
Becky

Freeway

My church (Eastside Christian Church) and I have been going through this series called Freeway. It’s all about finding the “free way” through Christ. It’s about being honest with God, others, and more importantly, yourself.

So far, the topics that have been covered have been:
– Knowing the One who grants freedom
– Awareness
– Discovery
– Ownership
– Forgiveness

The topic that has struck me has been the topic of ownership. How does ownership grant you freedom? Are they even connected? Why yes, yes they are.

Ownership is connected to freedom by how we react and own up to our choices. An example in my life where I have lacked ownership has been when I lost one of my closest friends a year and a half ago. I blamed it God, and I mistreated the relationships I had/have and jumped into a romantic relationship before being ready. If I had taken ownership of the pain I felt from losing a friend, I probably wouldn’t be trying to mend a broken heart from a broken relationship that I allowed to compromise some of my morals.

In recent pop culture news, Shia LaBeouf opened up to Interview Magazine and stated that he found God while working on his recent film Fury. I read the interview, and let me tell you, I want to meet Shia even more now (I had a HUGE crush on him when he was on Even Stevens!). At the end of the interview, Shia says:

I’ve been a runner my whole life, running from myself. Whether to movies or drinking and drugging or fu**ing calamity or whatever it is, I’ve always been running. I’m a dude who loves delusion. It’s why I love being an actor—I never have to actually look at myself or be faced with my sh** or take responsibility. So it’s been an eye-opening thing to have to look at myself, at my life, and have these reflective moments… I’ve been blessed with a sh** life.

What I absolutely love about this quote and article in general is the realness of it. I think often times as Christians in America we look at our lives and circumstances and ask God “why?.” I know I do this, probably on the daily.

Shia’s interview shows revelations from his time as being a Christian that has taken me years to even grasp. He [now] takes ownership of the circumstances that he has been through, even if they weren’t his fault. He has had to take responsibility for his life.

As someone who has grown up in the church, I haven’t taken responsibility when I should have all along. So what if Shia throws out expletives ever so often, as a young-ish Christian, he is more mature than I am.

Shia has been a great example in realizing that I need to take responsibility of my life and the choices I make. My encouragement to you is to take a step back and look at your life. Maybe you’ll see that you already take responsibility for your life, or you need to make some choices and take ownership of certain actions you may have done. I know that I need to do this.

Be blessed guys!

Lots of love & hugs,
Becky

P.S.
Sorry if this is all jumbled!