Guest Blog: Meet Danielle (Ottawa)

Do you ever question how you’ve become part of such a large, exuberant, extended family from time to time? Well let us introduce Danielle, she has questioned it herself maybe not just once but numerous times over the past two years. If you have yet to meet Danielle she is a generous friend who listens, takes time to digest what you’ve shared with her and will whole heartedly speaks the honest truth back at you. This environmentally friendly, biker gang member has seen her relationship with NP grow and has some words to share. We thank you, Danielle for continuing to show up, be present and encourage others to step outside of their comfort zone. It’s about time you meet Danielle.

Sunday, 9:05 PM

DH: ooohhh I am not ready for this week to start! Can’t we stay in weekend bliss a little longer?

NP: Oh girl, come on! Don’t you know that if Monday doesn’t come then Wednesday doesn’t come? You want Wednesday to come.

DH: yes, yes, yes! Ok, Wednesday is coming! 

Monday, 5:45 AM

NP: Wakey wakey! Let’s go!! Melissa, Ian, and Allie are at the gym… You are going to miss out if you don’t get up right now! 

Tuesday, 6:55 PM

DH: hmmm it’s dark and cold out and my couch feels so cuddly after my long day.

NP: Leeeettt’s get a move on girl! You are going to miss out on moving your body with some kickass people at Run Club! If you ask nicely, Becca might even come get you… You know you want to be there! 

Tuesday, 8:37 PM

DH: Friends? Friends? Who can I talk to next? Who is doing what? Can I have more friend time?

NP: Sloooowww it down girl! You need to get to bed! Take care of yourself. You can talk to them at coffee tomorrow. Right now we need to get some food into you and tuck you in!

Wednesday, 5:35 AM

NP: GET UP!!!! ITS TIME TO GET A MOVE ON! 

DH: What?! OH! I am up.

NP: Move a little faster, girl! Biker gang is waiting!!! You won’t be allowed to hold on to Dan’s beautiful tag if you don’t show up on time! 

DH: Bahhh I am doing my best here! 

NP: If I recall you wanted a friend time. Andre, Jamie, and Seumas won’t wait forever! 

Wednesday, 6:29 AM

NP: Shake your body! Move a little faster! Smile a little bigger! Say hi to someone new! 

DH: This hurts. They’re faster than me. I don’t want to do this.

NP: Keep going! Push just a little longer. Zephyr will run with you.

Wednesday, 7:10 AM

DH: Ahh, coffee.

NP: See I told you. Worth it! You are stronger than you think <3 

***Note: I picture NP as a squeaky, bouncy character similar to that of Little Miss Giggles from the Little Miss series of children’s books.

Some weeks are happy with high energy. Some weeks have very serious lows and I struggle to pick myself off my couch. Either way, for the last two+ years, every week has had some variation of this story. NP is its own character in my life. 

At first, NP was a new friend I was just getting to know. I had a goal of meeting new people and being more physically active outdoors. I was shy and it took a long time for NP to get to know me and for me to get to know them. And I mean a LONG time! For the first 6 months, our friendship was a little shakey. I was consistent but on PR days I wasn’t sure how much I liked my new friend and on Canada Day their presence and energy really intimidated me. They had something shiny though that kept me coming back for more.

Like any relationship, I had to put in the work. That was work on my relationship with myself and those around me. Being kind to my body that facilitates so much, asking more of it but also appreciating what it gives me. Being vulnerable with friends, letting people love the whole me and trying to love those pieces too. Being consistent, showing up even when the day before felt so unbearably low so that I can get a little extra support. Being consistent, showing up to give others a hug or a smile because they might need it. 

This year has been a difficult one for me. I have had a lot of ups and downs. The consistency of NP has extended beyond the 31 minutes on Wednesday mornings. NP is a friend that I am proud to introduce to other friends. They are kind and caring, they push me to be better to myself and to others, they ask a lot of me but give a lot in return. They remind me that I am strong and that strength doesn’t have to be found in solitude. 

Trying something new is hard. Making new friends can be scary. Pushing yourself out of your comfort zone is always uncomfortable. Trying this crazy thing one morning in May, and showing up again and again even when I wasn’t completely sure the first time, has proven to be inexplicably worthwhile.  


ANNOUNCEMENTS:

  1. ATTENTION for the month of November we are BACK at Parliament Hill that’s right folks for the entire MONTH of NOVEMBER.
  2. See NP social page for info on Snow Globe !! And other fun activities
  3. Bring a friend next week!
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