By: Co-foundress, Christy Skarulis
One of my fondest memories is my first trip to D.C. I was inspired by the sheer size of the monuments as we drove through them and perplexed by the changing colors of the Fall leaves (Fall isn't really a thing in Florida). Those feelings rushed back when I moved there in 2009 and every time I returned after that.
I cannot say the same thing for departures. The moment I hear the engine start to rumble, I immediately fall asleep and do not remember much when leaving places.
Cue the mood music:
My final departure out of DC was different. I was wide awake. I sat down in my window seat and stared out the small portal as the flight took off.
As we ascended higher and higher into the pitch black sky, the view of the city was so magical, it brought me back to the awe I felt on my very first trip. Around the brightly lit monuments and atop the sleepy suburbs we flew. Then, the plane made a surprising turn and we slowly circled around the entire city as if the pilot gave me my final victory lap.
I could see everything: the apartment building I lived in with my two best friends; the law firm where I worked and learned my boundaries; the yoga studio I took refuge in when my longterm boyfriend and I broke up; the plaza where I waited in line at 2am for tickets to see Hillary Clinton; the Mall I walked around during the Snowmaggedon; the road I took to see my sister when she had her baby; and the roads we stumbled through in high-heeled stilettos as newbie freshman trying to make our way in school. It hit me: none of my memories were about accomplishments or the decisions I stressed day in and out about. They were experiences, memories of a time when I grew stronger as an individual or enjoyed with cherished friends.
As the plane headed south and I looked at the dimly lit path ahead, my worries and anxieties dissipated and my heart filled with unquestionable trust that everything will be as it is meant to be. As the engine rumbled, the plane slowly rocked and my body crept into its usual slumber.
A Note About Our Future Adventure
Ashley and I started this company on the blind faith that we could use our talents and skills in a constructive way. We created Grip The Mat as a means to not only promote balanced lifestyles to others through our events, but to also remind ourselves to live every day to the fullest.
We created Grip The Mat as an extension of ourselves (of who we are and who we want to be), so it is only natural that it should help us grow and move forward. I'm heading West to forge new paths and launch Grip The Mat LA. It does not feel easy. Change certainly is not comfortable. It is, nonetheless, happening. As a good friend once advised, "bend your knees and roll."
So, here we go! Onward, in the direction of our goals. Upward, in the direction of our dreams. We can't wait to host our social experiences and you in Los Angeles!