During the last week of classes before my college graduation, I also attended my last counseling session. Graduation seemed to line up perfectly with a natural ending to my time in counseling. I was in a very positive place— with much thanks to Lindsey, my counselor— and was ready for the next chapter. My last session was meant to be one of closure, and I had the opportunity to reflect on many of the moments that had gotten me to that one.

“These moments will all become stories someday.”

Those moments—many of which were dark, lonely, and painful—were now just chapters in a bigger story. The hours I spent bawling on a bathroom counter or in a bookstore parking lot and realized I was struggling with something more real than I had previously allowed myself to admit. All the times I was asked if I was OK and chose to lie. The letters I handed to Lindsey, admitting things I couldn’t bear to say out loud. Together, these moments reflect a time in my life when I was empty, numb, exhausted. At the time, they felt endless, and I thought they were my whole story.

“This one moment when you know you’re not a sad story. You are alive.”

Looking back now, I can tell you exactly how these moments led to brighter chapters. In the end, they gave me the courage to create an even happier story than if I had merely been content. For every painful moment, there were beautiful ones that reminded me I was not just the sad, empty person I once believed I was: the night I slept under the stars in the Australia Outback; the day I spent 12 hours doing random acts of kindness through a club at school (and realized I was proud to be part of a school I was once unhappy at); many evenings filled with laughter in the townhouse I shared with four amazing roommates; the day I watched a friend, who had left school to get treatment for an eating disorder, get married.

During those moments, I couldn’t help but briefly look back and compare it to the months I spent believing I was a sad story. These moments would have been great no matter what my past had been like, but because I had struggled, they were so much more meaningful. Because I had known emptiness, in those moments I felt something much better than just “happiness.”

“In this moment, I swear, we are infinite.”

Infinite. A word that is both vague and oddly specific. It has no real definition or limit, and yet, I know exactly what it means.

Infinite are the moments that are the complete opposite of numbness or emptiness. Moments when you are so full of emotions, they spill out of you through smiles and laughter. Moments that nearly bring you to tears, because you once didn’t believe they were possible. You can’t plan these experiences. They usually catch you off guard. But those who have known emptiness can also know what it is to feel whole, to feel full—to feel infinite.

I know my story isn’t over, and there will be more difficult chapters ahead. I will see pain again. I will know loneliness again. That’s just life. But I also know these chapters come with the promise of more infinite moments—and those are worth holding on for. 

—Jess Cooney, TWLOHA Fall 2013 Intern

whats your typical workout week look like? reps/sets and what kind of workouts do you do? what kind of split?


I usually follow a strict program for atleast 6 weeks before moving on to a new one but every once in a while I like to just listen to my body and hit the parts I see/feel need work. This week;


     Mon - Legs/Shoulders

Kettlebell swings - warmup

Squats (ass 2 grass) - 3x10

Leg press - 2x10

Leg Extensions - 3x15

Lying Leg Curls - 3x10

Seated Calf Raises - 3x15

DB Shoulder Press - 3x8-10

Side Lateral Raises - 3x12-15


Single Arm Front Lateral Raises - 3x12-15

Rear Delt Raises - 3x12-15

Upright Rows - 3x15

DB Shrugs - 3x8


     Wed - Chest/Tri

Bench Press - 3x10

Incline Bench Press - 3x10

Flat DB Press with bands - 2x12

Flat DB Flys - 3x15

Dips - 2x12-15

Tri Pushdown - 4x12

Single arm Reverse Grip Tricep Pulldown - 3x10

Tricep Extension Machine - 3x12-15


     Fri - Back/Bi

Deadlift - 5x5

Bent Over BB Row - 3x8-10

Seated Row with Band - 3x10

Wide Grip Lat Pulldown - 3x10

Barbell Curls - 4x12, 10, 8, 6

Seated DB Hammer Curls - 3x10

Preacher Curls - 3x12, 10, 8


When It Comes to Fighting Stereotypes, I Want My Kids to Dare to Be Impolite

About four months ago, I took my older son, Jojo, to the barber shop.  I told the barber not to shave off all of Jojo’s hair and to just trim it.  He then proceeded to shave Jojo’s head practically bald.  ”Whoa, whoa, I told you that I did not want it bald, this is way too low!” I exclaimed.   

"How can I tell you this?” said the black barber with clippers still in the front of Jojo’s hair. “You’ve got a real n****r here.  He is a native boy.  He is from the tribe.  This ain’t pretty hair.  This is the best cut for him."  Despite the prevalence of the n-word in hip hop music, popular culture and the streets of my New York City neighborhood, I was both dumbfounded and devastated by the remark.  

And I didn’t want to make a scene.

Because I’ve played the incident over and over in my mind since then, if I could go back in time, I know exactly what I would say. “Brother, this boy in front of you is my little king.  How dare you refer to him as a ‘n****r’?  That word was used to oppress us and it has no place coming out of your mouth or anyone else’s. His hair is magical.  It defies gravity and replicates the DNA helix.  If you can’t respect that magic, we have to leave.” 

Read more. [Image: ostill/Shutterstock]

(via npr)



braid out

[look of the hour]

Love natural girls


Citizen’s Clean Water Summit organized by the Sierra Club. Stand up for Florida’s Waters.

Why I'm Not Here for #WhiteGirlsRock | Olivia Cole


  • Black Girls Rock! is necessary because when you Google “beautiful women,” this is what you see.
  • Because Pixar has never made a movie featuring a black cartoon character.
  • Because a black actress has never won a drama series Lead Actress Emmy. (Although Kerry Washington will change that, I am certain.)
  • Because in 39 years, only three black women have been part of the cast of SNL.
  • Because, until Scandal, the only real place you could find black women in leading roles on television was The Real Housewives of _______.

  • Because the “first black Disney Princess” was a frog for 95 percent of the movie.

Is what it is

(via mochafleur)




20 places that don’t look real (part 2)

11.Mount Roraima-South america

12.Naico mine-Mexico

13.Red beach-China

14.Solar du Uyuni-Bolivia

15.Tainzi mountians-China

16.Tulip fields-Netherlands

17.Tunnel of love-Ukraine

18.Wisteria flower tunnel-Japan

19.Zhangye Danxia landform-China

20.Zhangya Danxia Landfrom 2-China

i want to go to all of these places now.

The world is such a strange and beautiful place

(Source: phenex-sirius, via alluringtomost)



"…The God Graveyard, old gods that have been worshiped throughout our history but are no longer prayed to, how many more will be thrown into the wind?…"

It occurs to me that, with around $20,000, I could make this a real thing…with, like, real headstones and a permanent place in the world. Not sure why I want to do that, but it seems like these gods should have a place where people can come to remember them.

Though, I’m having a hard time figuring out how I would ask a grave marker company for “bulk rates” without sounding like a serial killer.