I have been waiting to cross this festival off my bucket list for quite some time now and after finally checking it off it has by far exceeding all expectations.
I don't quite have the words to describe how incredible it truly was but I will do my best. RiSE is a spiritual event that brings people together. It brings those at the festival together starting as complete strangers and forming new connections and some new friends. It brings so many people closer to those on the other side who want nothing more than to have just one more conversation with their lost loved ones.
I have to say the pure emotion and kindness from everyone attending made me feel like I was in another universe. There were two lantern releases and the first one literally took my breathe away with a rush of overwhelming emotions. It was overwhelming in the best way possible and hands down was A. the most beautiful thing I have ever seen and B. the most unreal thing I have ever seen. 13,000 lanterns all soaring up into the air. I get chills just writing about because it was one of the best experiences of my life. I strongly recommend this for everyone in their lifetime!
On my first lantern I wrote to me. I wrote what I have learned from my past and things I didn't necessarily love about myself. On the other side I wrote from the old Alexa to the new Alexa. Things I want to accomplish, how I want to live my life, and what I have learned from those mistakes or happenings from the other side of my lantern.
Something I have been working on this year is really focusing on me and my happiness. Putting the good type of selfishness forward. The fact that I got to do this with my lantern and release it to the universe felt like it was all coming full circle and that I really am changing my life the way I want to be.
On my second lantern I wrote to my dad. This was a very emotional experience for me. Now, I have released balloons with letters on it for my dad but something about the lantern and being surrounded by so many others looking for the same feelings took it to another level. My letter was to catch up with him. To fill him in on my life and tell him all of my emotions about him being away. I hope more than anything my lantern found you in heaven.
Sometimes it took awhile for lanterns to fill with the hot air so they wouldn't float away ... or some would get holes in them and it was really difficult for them to float ... watching others struggle to get their lanterns up tore my heart apart. You'd continue watching them cheering them on under your breathe because you knew how badly they want their lantern to fly and then when it finally did the look on their faces, the dance moves they did in excitement, the tears in some eyes ... it was so surreal and formed so much unity.
From the old Alexa ... To the new Alexa ...
I am so damn proud of the woman you are becoming. Please start to give yourself more credit in life. You are too hard on yourself so ease up and breathe a little more. Keep learning ... knowledge is wisdom and wisdom is wealth. You are the perfect combination of sensitive and a savage. Exist on your own damn terms and go wild for awhile. Read the rules before you break them because if you obey all the rules you will never have fun. Therefore, never let the rebel die in you. Find someone who sees fire in your eyes and wants to play with it. Don't settle for anything less. Love being you because it pisses off all the right people. Logic gets you from A to B but imagination gets you anywhere you want to go. So imagine, dream, and wander far. Chase your dreams not your kettle because some things in life just aren't worth chasing. If you're passionate enough about something people will join your army. Sometimes running from your problems means running into new opportunities so when you feel stuck ... run. Share your story you never know who's listening and who it may help. Your step count always matters so step away. Always find a way to have your cake and eat it too, sometimes its just harder work. If you walk in enough circles your bound to find your way, never give up. If you know you're a good catch let yourself fall damn it. Sometimes it's okay to be selfish. Never forget the old you and where you came from because that's the driving force of who you are today. Always believe in believing in something, anything.
Livin' the dream today because tomorrow is not promised.
- Sacrifice - the need to either give up something or lose something.
- The grind - to thrive under all conditions.
- Happiness - it's a choice so choose it, it's contagious so spread it, it gets better with age so age well and it is a life long pursuit so never give up.
- Small victories - have the possibilities of creating large opportunities. Your biggest victory is the fact that you have a life to live so don't waste it.
- Humility - gives you the ability to be magnetic to those who make you all warm and fuzzy inside.
Be Bold. Life Changes. Hot Boys.
Do you. Have Fun. Be Cool.