Stepping out into the great unknown

Change. It is the only constant. This is just a chapter. It’s only a matter of time before I turn the page and start something new, a journey into the unknown.

As you may or may not know, I will be studying abroad this fall. I leave for Florence, Italy in August. It will be my new home for a few months, and I can’t wait.

Florence, Italy

Photo by eugkyr.

I have never lived outside of my hometown where I’ve grown up. It’s comfortable. It’s home. This move is a huge step for me, granted it’s not for much longer than a few months. But it is me really stepping outside of my comfort zone. It is the epitome of my independence. To live in a foreign country. In an unknown world where I know nothing more than a very minimal amount of the language.

No one really knows what the future holds. It is the great unknown. It is chock-full of surprising twists and turns.

“I’m choosing happiness over suffering, I know I am. I’m making space for the unknown future to fill up my life with yet-to-come surprises.” -Elizabeth Gilbert

Although my decision to study abroad was a somewhat random and last-minute thought only about a month ago, there is nothing holding me back from doing it. I had thought about going abroad in the past, but I never found the courage to actually go through with it. There was always someone that held me back. A relationship. These men never intentionally or consciously kept me from pursuing a dream. It was me. I thought that if I left, I would lose them. I wasn’t ready for that. But now, I am finally free to be myself and by myself. I am taking that opportunity and running with it. I am entirely confident that I am making the right choice, no matter what anyone else tells me. I know that I will have the time of my life, and that makes me all the happier.

If a decision leaves you feeling hesitation instead of expectation, it’s probably not the right move.

Crystal Ball

I am in no way superstitious, but I had a little fun this morning with a free tarot card reading. My results confirmed any doubts and questions that may have been lingering about going abroad for a little while. Ironically, I could relate to my results and all of my cards, past, present, and future.


The Five of Swords in the Past position
Hopes have been shattered, ambitions crushed, vulnerabilities exploited by others. The enemy could be another individual, “the system,” or your own shortcomings or lack of self-respect. In any case, the defeat brings humiliation and a sense of helplessness. Life may feel like a cruel joke. These humbling circumstances are not completely grim. Pain can be a profound catalyst for growth, and dissolution offers the opportunity for a new start. To avoid being caught in a spiraling dynamic of bitterness and treachery, resign yourself to losing the battle. Search for the lessons that lie in the ruins. If you are the one who feels powerful and conquering at this time, ask yourself how you got here. Does a trail of others’ tears lie in your wake? When people gain at the expense of others, everyone ultimately loses.

The Empress in the Present position
In a reading, the Empress calls on you to love and care for yourself, body and soul. Follow your emotions and listen to your instincts. She also asks you to embody her qualities of nurturance, and give something of your own glory to the world.

The Four of Wands in the Future position
Meaning: This card portrays a joyful passage from one stage to the next. Like the May Day celebration, the Four of Wands is about the gaiety that encourages growth and abundance. The spring crops are in the ground. A good foundation has been established; great optimism is in order. Remember, delight has a vital place in creating lasting success. With hard work behind and more challenges ahead, now is the time to relax and enjoy. Take pride in all that you’ve accomplished. You’ve come a long way!

Carina Jaynes


Freedom & Independence

Beyonce got it right when she said, “Ladies it ain’t easy being independent.” You know exactly what I’m talking about if your a single woman in this world.

girl in sunset

I myself am only recently single as of earlier this year for the first time since I was able to date. I have constantly had a boyfriend since my sophomore year in high school. I had those short breaks in between guys, but never enough time to really find myself and what I want out of life. The time to be free. That is independence. In fact, the very definition of independent is, “Free from outside control; not depending on another’s authority.”

This post is inspired by all of those women out there that have that one unhealthy relationship that they know they shouldn’t be in because he treats her like crap. I have been seeing it around me and in movies a lot lately. I’m sure we’ve all had at least one of those in our lives. The one where he calls whenever he needs something and knows you’ll come running to his kiss his feet. It’s the one in which we pretend that we don’t really want a relationship either. We’re just “hanging out” and “having fun.” The comfortable one. The one we are addicted to like a drug.

I read an article recently on called 88 Important Truths I’ve Learned About Life that said:

The most common addiction in the world is the draw of comfort. It wrecks dreams and breaks people.

Trust me, I know how comfortable it is to come home and know that someone is there waiting for you, or that you never have to feel alone because there is someone special in your life. But you know what? That feeling of not being alone is only a facade. The article also said that if you aren’t happy single, you won’t be happy in a relationship, and that is so true. Granted I am somewhat of a newbie to this singlehood, I am probably the happiest I have been with myself ever. Finally taking a step back and seeing people around me doing the same thing I was in my unhealthy relationships is a huge eye-opener. I want to shake these women until they can see what I do.

I will admit, however, that I did have some help in getting to where I am happy about being single. Before the end of my last relationship, I read a book by Dr. Laura Schlessinger called 10 Stupid Things Women Do to Mess Up Their Lives. My mom gave be the book a long time ago when I was in high school. But I was stubborn then and thought I was in love with the guy I was dating. Boy, was I wrong! Yet, I seemed to keep falling for these guys that didn’t treat me right. Not all were bad, but there were always times in every relationship that I found myself asking myself if it’s what I wanted.

In a last ditch effort to make my last relationship work, I picked Dr. Laura’s book up off my shelf and started reading. I couldn’t put it down. I wasn’t married with kids or anything, but everything she was saying was like it was directed towards me. It felt weird and empowering to read about some of these women and how “stupid” they could be when it came to their relationships. Then I thought, “Shit. This is how I am.” I knew right then and there that if I wanted any relationship to work out in my life, I needed to change. I needed to work on myself and my insecurities. That’s what I’ve been doing ever since.

Yes, the loneliness gets to me every now and then, and sometimes life can get you down, but I love being able to come home to my own space and relax and do whatever it is I want to do. It is so incredibly freeing. I can do anything. It’s an exhilarating feeling of relief. No thing and no one is holding me back from following through with what I want to do with my life. It’s bliss.

The point is ladies, you’re not alone. Listen to your family and friends, the ones on the outside looking in. The ones who have been there. Listen to yourself. If you know it doesn’t feel right and are questioning your relationship, or lack thereof, get out right now. It isn’t worth the long-term pain and heartache. It may hurt for a little bit at first, but it’s better than figuring it out 10 years down the road when you’re hiring a divorce lawyer. You will find someone that deserves you and someone that wants to be with you and treats you the way you should be. Find your inner peace and happiness. It will resonate and you will glow. People will notice and they will be drawn to you. Trust me.

Carina Jaynes

So it begins…

Everyone is always telling me, “Carina, you need to start writing something…anything.” I can’t tell you how many times I have been told that I should start my own blog. I simply respond with, “Oh, I used to have a few of them, but then lose interest and never update them.” I guess I felt I never really had anything to blog about. I mean, who would really want to read what I have to say anyway, right?


I have also been told by people that I have a way with words. I’ll text a friend and they’ll respond with how well I “write” to them. So I figured now is as good a time as any to start a fresh blog. My own web diary that maybe you’ll read, maybe you won’t. But you know what, when people ask me why I don’t write and/or have a blog online, I can finally respond with those two words we all desire to say– “I do.”

I suppose I can accredit this new-found hobby to my incessant boredom of days as of late. I am out of school (graduated from San Diego State University in journalism…another reason why people wonder why I don’t write), and always at home, even though it’s summer. Potentially, my last summer of freedom without the restraints of one of those nine-to-five “big-girl” jobs. This is also the first time ever in my life that I have been solo with nothing and no one to really hold me back from doing almost anything that I want…minus this pesky DUI that I obtained at the end of last year. But that’s for another time. Right now, I’m just going to focus on the positive.

So here it is Mom and Dad. The blog you have all been waiting for. Here’s to the beginning of a new me.


Carina Jaynes

The content that was previously posted on this blog were for my journalism multimedia class taken last semester. I thought about deleting it, but I just didn’t have the heart. I kind of like the idea of my other work being available for everyone to see. I am proud of it.