Marriage is honest.  And hard.  It’s working and trying and holding on for dear life because you know it’s worth it.  Marriage is safe.  And comfortable.  It’s possibility and security wrapped up into one.  Marriage is sides of the bed and socks on the couch.  It’s picking up where the other lets off just so you can keep the ball rolling.  Marriage is fights and yelling and being incredibly irrational…because that’s what love can do to you sometimes.  Marriage is compromise.  Lots of it.  It’s humbling (thanks Christy for that one)…and tests you on every level.  For no other reason than because you want to be the very best you can be for your partner.  It pushes you and drives you crazy and breaks you down…but it is always there to catch you.  It’s the soft net that appears when the floor drops out from under you.  It’s the laughter that lights up every crevice of your being.  Marriage is glasses of champagne…just because.  It’s sitting for hours without saying a word because you don’t have to.  It’s listening…and really hearing what they’re not saying.  Marriage is that feeling that something really can last forever…like somehow you ended up with the one person in the whole universe that you actually want to spend every single day with.  Marriage is knowing that everything else in the world can fail…but it’s the one thing that never will.  Not because it can’t…but because you won’t let it.  Marriage is fighting…tooth and nail…every single day.  Not with each other but for each other. For the life you want…together.  It’s saying thank you and and never forgetting the small things.  It’s window seats and broken eggs yolks and opening car doors and driving the whole way.  It’s waking up every day and asking yourself how you can make their life better.

 

Marriage is honest.  And hard.  But it’s worth it.  I know I’m no expert…but as we close in on our first year of marriage I feel like this last year has taught be more than all my other years combined.  There’s something that happens when you become husband and wife.  There are these expectations you put on yourself and the way you think things should go…and then there is reality.  And the reality is…at the very core of it all…marriage is a promise.  To do the very best you can.  And while not every day is sunshine and rainbows…every day is better than the last.  Because it’s a day spent together.  No matter what…no matter where we are or what we are doing.  No matter if it’s a good day or a bad day…or the worst day.  I’ll always have Gary there to make me smile.  To hug me and make the world disappear.  And not to be the perfect husband…but to be my husband.  Which is more than I could ever ask for…

 

 

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  • Tami Paige - March 26, 2015 - 9:31 am

    Lauren Truelock, you are good at relationships. Did you know that? You are. You’re good at them because you have a good balance of honesty and grace. You hold our feet to the fire while standing in it with us. You know you’re not perfect, but you’re never going to not stop working to be better. So Lauren Brooke…I just wanted to remind you that you’re good at relationships, because loving well is just loving. Showing up. Being present. Staying…and you do that. Love ya sister.ReplyCancel

  • Anjelica - March 27, 2015 - 12:32 am

    Yes. yes. Yesssss. I can’t thank you enough for this one. As you are closing in on your first year of marriage, my journey on the road to marriage is just about to begin. It’s an honest reminder to let go of the reins of what life is supposed to be and ride out every moment with the one that makes it all worth it. This is lovely and honest….ReplyCancel

 

We had been saying for years we would make it out to South Dakota to see Uncle John and Aunt Julie.  They are two of our absolute most favorite people in the world and one way or another our South Dakota trip just kept not happening.  So over thanksgiving we put a weekend on the calendar and promised to make it happen.  And that’s exactly what we did.  We loaded up the car and drove 9 hours west to the land of motorcycle rides and deep friend bacon.  Beers at the Ice House and laughing until your side hurts.  Patio sitting and margarita drinking.  Ribs like you wouldn’t believe and time with the kind of family that you can’t believe you are lucky enough to have.  Our trip was nothing short of amazing and as we drove those long hours home…I think a little part of all of us wanted to turn around.  Because weekends like this remind you what’s really important in life…like spending time with the people you just don’t want to live without.

 

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If my marriage can be half of what theirs is I will die a happy woman.

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You best believe I brought the selfie stick!

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This place, The Ice House,  was so awesome.  It is rated as one of the top 10 bars in the country and you literally pull up…sit on this little wood landing and a lady comes out and brings you beer.  Then when you are done you throw it between your legs and shatter the bottle.  It was definitely one of the highlights of our trip.

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I went ONE HUNDRED MILES on that thing!!!  It was an experience…I think I’m meant for the open road.  Just maybe in a convertible.  ;)

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Our trip wouldn’t have been the same without Miss Lola.  One of our favs…

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We had a little fun…just a tad.

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And then we DEEP FRIED BACON!!!!  Say whaaaaaaaa?!?!?!

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We’ve been hearing about Uncle John’s ribs forEVER!  And let me tell you…they did not disappoint.  Fall off the bone doesn’t even cut it…you cam pull the bone clean out.  They were to die for.

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Saying goodbye to our home away from home.  :(

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South Dakota…we will most definitely be back.

 

I’ve known Brian longer than I’ve known most people in life.  Our brothers are best friends and after so many years, that pretty much makes you family.  We’ve spent countless cookouts and race parties and random nights full of a few too many cocktails together and the first time he brought Steph to one of these said nights…I knew it was going to be forever.  Something about these two just fits.  Perfectly.  They compliment everything about each other in the best way and there is no doubt when you are around them that their life together is going to be nothing short of an adventure.

 

Brian and Steph…thank you for including me in your amazing day.  Rain or shine…it was perfect.  It’s so awesome to watch your friends get married but it’s ever better the get to document it.  I wish you guys nothing but the best and I can’t wait to have a few too many cocktails together soon!

 

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A big thanks to my second shooter, Brandi Toole, for shooting with me!

And another big thanks to all the vendors that made this day happen:

Venue: Holiday Inn Miami Beachfront  |  Florist: Jeannie Frankovitz |  DJ: Miami DJs  |  Cake: Fabulous Cake Couture  |  Makeup: Miami Makeup Pro  |  Hair:Randy Garcia HD

 

Recently…I was posed the very interesting question of why?  Why do I put it all out there?  Why is my business based so wholly on who I am instead of what I do?  Why do I feel it is so important to be the most authentic version of yourself online…to be vulnerable and real even when it’s not easy?  And to be honest…I didn’t have the answers.  These questions have stuck with me over the last few days and while my mind is still trying to mold the words as to why living this way is so important to me…I think I came to somewhat of a conclusion.

 

Because I am a difference maker.  Or at least I really want to be.  There is plenty of perfect in the world.  Blogs that show you incredible houses and offices and lives of people who have 10 kids and still seem to do it all.  Who’s kids never seem to make a mess and days never seem to be anything but sunny.  Who are #blessed even when behind the scenes their world is crumbling.  I get it…who wants to put the messy out there?  And who’s to say we aren’t allowed a certain amount of privacy?  But for me…it’s about showing both sides.  No…if Gary and I are fighting and I am crying in the bedroom I don’t feel the need to post an Instagram of my puffy eyes letting the world know about it.  But I am also not crying and posting a picture of Gary and I kissing saying how lucky I am.  Because what good am I doing for every other person out there if I try to make it appear as if every day is perfect?  If I pretend like my office is always clean or my life is always right on track.  If I act like everything is pretty and perfect all I am doing is making someone else feel inadequate.

 

But if I am real.  And honest and authentic…then it brings us together.  It shows the world that hey…I’m a real person with real problems and a real amount of dog hair on my floors…but that makes me no less than the person next to me who cleans up their desk before they Instagram it.  I still have a great life and great husband and a cozy little house even if it will never be HGTV worthy.  I want to drop the veil that separates social media and real life.  I want to redefine what we consider normal and celebrate the lack of perfection that makes real life so beautiful.  I believe these are the little things that can make the big difference.  And while I don’t have all the answers I think what it really comes down to is a question…

 

…what kind of difference maker do you want to be?

 

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You know how they say one friend can change your whole life…well Lola is that friend to me.  We met when I was working at Arthur Murray and we used to sit in my office and solve all the world’s problems.  Our minds work so differently that together…they were like magic.  Everything about Lola is infectious.  Her laugh…her spirit…her attitude towards everything in life.  I can’t tell you the number of times just talking it out with her had the ability to turn a total disaster into greatness.  She sees the world in a way that is so unique and when you are around her…you just know you are around someone truly special.  She makes you want to be better but there isn’t anything in the world you could do that would make her judge you.  She’s authentic, strong, hilarious, an incredibly hard-worker, beautiful and one hell of a person.  Bottom line…Lola is an incredible woman and one that I feel so incredibly lucky to have in my corner.

 

__________________________________

LOLA DONAHUE

 

I am never satisfied with anything.  I always want more.
People tell me I can’t have it all, especially my Mom.
I was sexually abused by my Grandfather at a very young age.  My Grandma knew it was happening and told my parents that she wouldn’t “throw away” 30 years of marriage over “something like this”…cue the next 3 decades of abandonment, eating, and relationship issues.
I feel like I was cheated out of a fun and care free childhood.
My other set of Grandparents would always tell me I needed to lose weight. No matter how much I lost, it was never good enough.
When I went to borrow a calculator the morning of my ACT test, my Grandpa told me I needed to “back away from the dinner table”…I cried the entire 4 hours of my test.
When I see amazing Grandparents with their grandkids I am sad and jealous.
I used my abuse as an excuse to never live to my full potential.
I am a complete commitment-phobe.  I have a hard time committing to ANYTHING.
I have been engaged 3 times, proposed to 6, and am still not married.
I eat too much.
I was bullied in school for years.  My Mom taught me to make fun of myself first before anyone else could.  It taught me to be strong, but never allowed me to believe that I was truly good at anything.
I pretend that I am not competitive.  But I am secretly EXTREMELY competitive.
I have always felt fat.  Even when I was skinny…I felt fat.
I have only had the “butterfly feeling” for two men in my life.  Both of them left me.  One killed himself the night after I stood him up (and it was the first time I deliberately did something for revenge).
I am terrible at being vulnerable.
I wonder if I am ever going to find a husband.
I don’t want kids because I am terribly selfish with my time.
When in a relationship, I am a complete hypocrite.  I want to do whatever I want, but I don’t want the other person to do the same.  It should be all about me.
I think all men cheat.
I think all men eventually get bored.
I would never write in a journal because I would be too worried my Mom would find it and have a heart attack.
The only time I have ever cheated on a test, I got caught.
I am pissed that I have stretch marks and I haven’t even had a baby.
My mom’s way of showing affection is to make fun of me.
I am a complete extremist.  I am either all in or all out…there is nothing in between.
I rush into almost every relationship.
I have ZERO patience.
I never read directions.  Which always causes me a lot of stress and wasted time.
I used to have debilitating migraines.
When I would get anything less than an A- on a paper at school, I would throw away the papers before I got home so my parents wouldn’t know.
I hold a grudge…for a long time…. and I am still working on forgiveness.

 

What I know now is that life is GOOD!
HOW YOU THINK IS HOW YOU WILL LIVE, the problem is we are usually thinking about all the wrong things.  We usually wake up and play the same old, tired recording in our head.  I don’t want to get up…I hate my job…why do I have to go work…I hate the way I look…I hate the way I feel…I am too fat…I am too ugly.  The list can go on and on…. We are our own worst enemies and I believe we need to change what we are thinking.  When I wake up, I immediately list what I am grateful for.  Before I go to bed, I list what I am grateful for.  Be grateful!  For everything!  There are no problems, only opportunities to be better and while you may not have control over WHAT happens to you, you do have control over how you FEEL about it.  No more self hatred.  I only choose to see the good in any situation, no matter how bad it is.  You are not your past.  When I look in the mirror I choose to focus on what I love about myself, not what needs to be changed.  Living authentically means living from love, not from fear.  You can do, be and have anything if you love and accept yourself flaws and all!

 

#wcw, amazing women, inspiring women, women who inspire_0001

  • Janet Wakefield - March 21, 2015 - 2:14 pm

    Wow Lola
    I am so touched by your story and the remarkable lessons that you have learned along the way. Thanks for your courage in sharing this with us all.
    LOVE YOU
    MOM WakefieldReplyCancel