February 1, 2017

The Best Cure

I’ve had a weird week. On tour, we have hours on end wandering around a new city trying to entertain ourselves before having to get ready for our shows at night. Sometimes we are very productive and go to the gym, site see, and explore. Other times, more so than not, we sleep in until late in the day and slowly make our way into the venue and just sit. I’ve come to realize that “sitting around” can be a poisonous thing for me. It allows my mind to think. Think a little too much. If I sit for too long I over analyze everything and stress myself out with questions, concerns, and complaints about myself. This week I have felt very unmotivated. I feel like my body isn’t where I want it to be, I haven’t been overly happy and bubbly, and I have torn myself apart by judging every ounce of insecurity and problem I posses. I ultimately was being incredibly selfish by only thinking of “Me, Me, Me”. Yesterday, however, I found the best cure that turned my whole day/week into sunshine and butterflies.

I think I’ve mentioned this before but Dancing With the Stars has created and maintained a beautiful relationship with Children’s Hospitals around the country. The best days of the year are when we get to go visit these beautiful angels and are inspired by their strength. Our cast members were invited to go to the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital yesterday. It was the most magical day!! Spending just a few hours with these angelic souls completely changed my mindset and helped me focus on what truly matters in life.

We first started the day in the Seacrest Studios room by chatting on their radio show that’s broadcasted in all the rooms for the kids to watch. We talked about what we would be if we weren’t dancers, what our favorite dance styles are, what keeps us motivated during hard times, and what we like to do on our time off.

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I think this is when Keo stole the mic and started singing to the kids…. hahaha.

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We then played a game a charades. The kids loved this game and had fun guessing what we were acting out.

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Monkey.

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Snake.

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Diving into a pool.. although my form could be mistaken for Michael Phelps 🙂

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Meow.

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Putting on makeup.

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Birdy.

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We then got to take pictures with the kids who were healthy enough to meet us. I wish with all my heart that we could have gone around to all of their individual rooms and met the ones who were too sick to leave their room. But Cincinnati Children’s is ranked number three in the country, so they are pretty strict with their regulations and rules…. totally understandable.

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This sweet little angel melted my heart.

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I’m also so grateful that I get to work with some amazingly talented people that have hearts full of gold. I’m even luckier because I get to call some of them my best friends. (Remember when we talked about surrounding yourself with good people who motivate you? I think I found mine :))

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When we fully commit to putting others before ourselves, we have no choice but to forget about our own issues and problems. There is a quote I love by Gordon B. Hickley that says, “The happiest people I know are those who lose themselves in the service of others”. We all want to be happy, right? Isn’t that our main goal almost everyday? Finding happiness in this crazy and chaotic world. I promise that if you take just a few minutes everyday to think about somebody else and see how you can make their day a little brighter, yours will be beaming with sunshine and light! Sure love you guys.

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12 thoughts on “The Best Cure

  1. Thank you for this post! We were one of the lucky families that were able to meet you at Cincinnati Children’s. I don’t think you could even understand the depth of gratitude we have for your visit. You made my three daughters (and me) smile so much! For that time frame they forgot about their pain, the fear of what is to come in life (because they have a Chronic Illness) and the fact they have no friends. Who wants to hang around with a 17 year old who uses a walker and that slows them down & can’t do much activity without breaking, spraining or dislocating a bone. Who wants to hang out with a 15 year old who requires someone medically trained to be with her at all times and passes out with no warning. Who wants to hang out with a 13 year old with misophonia in which many sound make her cry, fearful and angry. For that time frame you all made them feel loved, accepted, important and human. You have that power and that platform and thank you for your new found perspective to carry on!! I think it means more to others than you will ever know!!

  2. Jenna–I have two daughters, age 11 and almost 15. We are huge fans of Dancing with the Stars and have been for many years. You have brought such a special magic to the show with your positive energy and kind heart. Your blog is genuine, inspiring and heartfelt. I’m so happy that my daughters have you for a role model as they grow up to be strong, positive women themselves. Keep being you, and thank you so much. Fondly–Jen

  3. After I finished reading your post, I noticed that I felt better. My workplace has been horribly difficult recently, to the point that I do not want to go in anymore. Too many of the kids are too young to be in daycare all day long, and they barely function, and others are not nice to their peers. It’s hard and stressful for everyone involved, and it’s equally hard to put on a happy face, although we do. But our trials and tribulations are nothing compared to what the Hospital Families go through every day. It is very possible that my day tomorrow will be less hard because of what I read tonight. Thank you, Jenna. P.S. The pictures are fabulous, especially the “putting on make up!” 🙂

  4. Every time a read your posts I can understand myself better. Thanks to show us your vulnerable side. I always think I’m the only one with all the problems, insecurities and doubts. Well I”m not young as you are and I havent get myself together or decided a carrier but I still feel that I came a long way. Reading your posts I can (sometimes) see the positve side of my choices. This post in particulat is very important to remind us to be grateful and happy if what really matters in life. Thanks again!!

  5. I saw you on Tuesday at the Aronoff and you were amazing! And I could only get my husband to come because you are his favorite, even back to the SYTYCD days! I’m so glad you all could visit children’s. Such an amazing way to uplift others. Your blog is awesome, keep it up!

  6. Jenna,
    I am a mom of 3 kids and are much older than you! But I have a 15 yr old daughter who dances and we love to watch you and all your talented friends on DWTS. Your blogs are so inspiring, genuine and heartfelt for all ages. I have so enjoyed your book suggestions for myself and my daughter ( Great gift from your mom!). I can feel your heartbreak through these blogs but just have faith that what is meant to be will be and you won’t be able to stop it! Debbie

  7. Jen, you are a truly beautiful soul. This comes through in how you dance, how you carry yourself, and in how you write. I haven’t commented to you yet, but I enjoy reading your entries here and learning so much more about you. Thank you for sharing. I am so glad you found your light this week. My friend’s daughter spent several years going through surgeries and chemo, so I know first hand the anguish of these families, and how seeing their child happy and healthy is all their loved ones want. You may not be able to bring them complete health, but I’m sure you all made them happy and that in itself improves health! I’m glad it improved your well-being too, right when you needed it. But when you find yourself “in that place” you spoke of, it’s true that ruminating isn’t good, but completely fighting off negative thoughts and emotions isn’t healthy either. Society is overly focused on being happy, but the reality is that life is not meant to be happy all the time. We feel like there’s something terribly wrong with us or negative about us if we’re not the happy, positive person everyone wants us to be 24/07. Remember that all thoughts and feelings are there for a reason. Embrace that. Accept the thoughts for what they are, address them, and then they can leave you. Avoiding them or pushing them away/looking for a distraction will only lead to them getting bottled up inside and exploding in the worst possible way at some unexpected point in the future. You seem very self-aware, so you probably already know this and are simply writing about certain aspects of your thought processes this week. But I just wanted to put that out there in case you or anyone reading this needed to hear it. I mean certainly look for the positive and find your light as you did! But just know that no matter what you’re thinking and feeling, you’re ok. Embrace. Accept. Address. And then move on…as you probably did. XOXO

    1. I have never heard such wisdom before. It makes perfect sense and I believe will help a huge number of people. Well said and perfect advice to Jenna.

  8. We were also one of the families that was lucky to meet you! Kaylee had a blast! For a little while Kaylee forgot she was at the hospital for what seems like the “millionth” time. When her life is fillied with doctors appointments, therapy appointments, and multiple surgeries only at the age of four, sometimes you forget to stop and embrace the little things in life. Thank you again for this wonderful opportunity. This will be an experience both her and I will never forget! God Bless!

  9. I didn’t expect to love your blog as much as I do! It is way more personal and much deeper than almost every other blog I know. Thank you for sharing your normal, vulnerable not so glamorous side. I just started to change my diet and started to work out because I was soo inspired.
    Thank you <3

  10. excellent put up, very informative. I’m wondering why the other experts of this sector do not notice this. You must proceed your writing. I’m sure, you have a great readers’ base already!
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