Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Reason #15: Eloise, I mean Gillian, in the Plaza

Last night I attended a NYC alumni fundraising event at "The Plaza". I was quite enthused of my university's choice in location as a) the Plaza is stunning, b) the last alumni event I attended I was slugging beer out of paper cups at Brother Jimmy's, and c) the first project I was put on in my current job was the financing of the Plaza. It certainly was a nice change of pace to be strutting around the Grand Ballroom with a glass of champagne in hand, in comparison to checking out the construction and budget status in a hard hat. I don't know if it was the champagne, or the piano playing, or rekindling with old college friends, but the energy in the room was lively and vivacious. When the President of our University stood up infront of the 300+ crowd, he asked if a volunteer from the audience would talk about their college experience. I don't know what happened, but when the President asked for a volunteer, my arm shot into the air and started flailing. While I was sitting in the back row (AKA the seat closest to the bar), the President looked back and sure enough called on me. Now dont call me crazy, but this is what I remember next, BA DUMP, BA DUMP, BA DUMP, BA DUMP. Nope it wasnt the University jazz band coming in, but my heart nearly pumping out of my chest. I truly could not remember the last time I felt such nerves. As the lady with the microphone started walking over, my knees started feeling weak (uh hello what is going on body?). Just as I was forcing my weak knees to straighten out and stand, the lady turns and hands the microphone to a girl a few rows infront of me instead. UH HELLO??? The first words the girl says are, "Hi my name is Stephanie, and I dont think I was the one the President called on, but anyway...."

So nonetheless, I never got to speak infront of the 300+ crowd. Perhaps it was best? I did have a little too much of the kool-aid, and who really knows what part of my body would have began twitching next. But after thinking it over, I realized my arm shot in the air because I had a wonderful college experience, and I wanted to express my gratitude. The nerves were mere excitement.

Now clearly the focus of my blog is health and wellness, which does NOT exactly correlate with being nervous, sweaty, awkward, and twitchy. But in a way I feel I kind of had an "ah-hah" moment, and I was experiencing that "alive" feeling. The same feeling I got before my state championship soccer game, and before my first date with my boyfriend, and during the last leg of my half-marathon. Those adrenaline running, endorphin pumping moments are the best, and the ones you remember, and unfortunately I don't think I feel them nearly as much.

So I am challenging myself (and others) to take more chances, to feel the rush, and to feel alive. As I posted on my very first post, my personal mantra is:

Be compassionate. Live with intention. Continue to learn. Take chances. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Appreciate your family and friends. Dwell in possibility. Dance. Do what you love. Live your life.

It is time to grab the microphone!

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