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A cowboy girl at Georgetown...

Years ago, before this Tik Tok stuff became a “thing” and our attention spans shrunk to 10 second clips….we read blogs.

(Before someone freaks out about it, yes I know I’m dating myself here by saying this, and yes…I continue to read too many books! Just to clarify, only talking in online engagement here folks!) Now, I sure hate to wax poetic and sound silly—but I loved blogs. Since I was schooled at home and we always lived pretty far out, in high school they became a fun way to stay connected to folks outside the immediate area. Some of these blogs just plain inspired the heck out of me. Art, fashion, the everyday musings of those who lived on the outer edges of society--I loved the words and pictures and how it provided a permissible “peek” into so many creative’s worlds.

Frankly, I am by nature, a private person. I don’t share a lot of things on social media that folks seem to feel comfortable sharing these days, and I share some things others might balk at. But regardless, this little corner of the internet where the folks of “Dear Cowgirl” gather, has become something precious to me. The community which evolved from the simple act of sharing something online, has been a gift far beyond what I could have ever imagined. Like a little gift with big consequences.

This last year has seen a lot of changes in my life, and I’ve frequently wondered at the “how” and “why” of sharing what that looks like with folks online. I hesitate at things like the “get ready with me” videos that seem so popular now, not because I don’t enjoy them too—but because they simply don’t feel like “me.” You most likely won’t ever find me lip syncing or dancing to some rap song on Tik Tok either, and I just can’t apologize for that…because it wouldn’t be real. It wouldn’t be me.

However, this is me.

This little blog, this little space, where words and pictures and good humans converge—this is my space.

I hope to use it a little more this year to share the in’s and out’s of life as a cowboy girl navigating the wild turns of life. Maybe it’s not flashy, and maybe it seems a little outdated…but if you will indulge me, I think I shall begin to use it as a bit of a diary if you will. A space to chat, recount and relive, to wonder and ponder and discuss, and hopefully share the current adventure of graduate school in Washington D.C.

You see, I had this wild idea, this dream, for so many years—and then it came true. I’m blessed to be attending Georgetown University in the SSP program, studying Terrorism and Substate Violence under the tutelage of exceptional humans. My professors and fellow students come from wildly diverse backgrounds….and I am honored to be among their ranks, just wearing boots.

Life is so funny. One day you are hauling water to your off grid cabin in the remote wilderness tailed by a fox—and the next, you are walking cobblestone streets of Georgetown with a thirst for knowledge that feels as though it will never be quenched.

What a gift this wild life is.

In my first year here in Washington D.C., I will admit to feeling a little confused over who and what I was. How that looked while navigating these new spaces was a challenge in more ways than one. In many ways, this city and its pulse made me feel lost and reborn all at once.

But it’s been a year, and I gradually found my footing. The delicate balance between being open and steadfast in one's beliefs, honest and accepting, strong and resilient—I believe this to be a learned skill of balance. One I am still working to grow every day! A very wise man whom I respect greatly as both a mentor and dearest friend here at Georgetown has encouraged my “cowboy” side since I arrived. In the softest and kindest way possible, he has continually reminded me of who and what I am. Looking back on this last year, I see now how he has so gently tried to help me see that those pieces of myself I have always viewed as “weird” and “awkward” and “different” are actually, strengths. Strengths that must be accessible if I am to contribute in this unique space and help others….all while growing myself. I didn’t realize it at the time, but as he would ask about the things I hold so dear—horses, cowboyin, music…he quietly encouraged that part of me that was so worried about allowing myself to be all those things at once. The academic, the cowboy girl, the songwriter, the wanderer, the wild one. Those gentle prompts have paid off, and I see now what a gift this “odd” background I have truly is, and feel grateful for his encouragement to not shrink to fit into spaces…rather to exist, to learn and to grow. Just as I am.

Today, I feel more prepared than ever to navigate the grand stone halls of Georgetown.

Wearing boots, singing cowboy tunes and bringing issues the ag and cowboy community currently face to light in different spaces and hopefully new ways…just a cowboy girl in Washington D.C.

I hope you’ll join me (and Lefty!) on this adventure, Hoya Saxa!

(Promise to explain more about THAT in the next blog!)



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