Past and Present


shantel rousseau monochromeshantel rousseau outfit postasos sock boots

Shooting OOTD’s in the middle of downtown isn’t the easiest thing to do in the world. People are staring, commenting, trying not to look but totally being bait about it (I saw that lol), leaving and then COMING BACK to see if you’re still there doing what you’re doing lol… Yelling obnoxious things at you like.. “WHAT’S YOUR INSTAGRAM?” & you low-key want to shout it but then you’re not quite sure if they’re being an asshole.. Typically the laughter will then follow so then you know it wasn’t genuine.

BUT YET, we persevere, we ignore, WE GET THE SHOT and then we move on.

& sometimes you see people (or they see you) and you wish you hadn’t, or it’s a stark reminder of where you used to be or who you used to be.

& in this outfit, on that day – that awareness was palpable.

simply shantel instagram

Whilst, Michael and I were creating magic – I saw someone I used to be super close with. They saw me first and through the chatter aka distraction, I saw them (slightly cz I wasn’t wearing my glasses LOL! – usually that would annoy TF out of me that I couldn’t see them.. but God was saving me that day lolol!).

& at first, I was annoyed. Annoyed that we were in the same place, annoyed that I was in such a state (posing) and them in theirs (relaxed). My insecurity threw me off from my game.. I wasn’t paying attention..immediately lost in my head. Not focusing on mine. Not staying the course. Not remaining steadfast.

aritzia turtleneck

The moment came as quickly as it went (again, GOD!). Like, a faint breeze that you didn’t know you needed until it departed.
The (good) thing about living in your head like I am guilty of is that you can talk yourself off of the same bridge that you brought yourself to.

& that’s what I did.

I decided to take the moment as my own. It wasn’t going to be a reminder of my ego, my false self and the negativity that had already brewed up. It was an indication of where I was now and they were simply a figment of my past. End of story.

I channeled those initial dark thoughts into positive energy. I was different then who I was than and that encounter, reminded me of how much I’ve prospered since those days.
I wasn’t my full self when they knew me and to be honest, their departure was one of the most freeing things that ever happened to me (even though I didn’t fully know it then – do we ever?).

all brown outfit inspo

The point of my rambling is really a couple of things…

1) Be gentle to yourself. Even the most heinous of experiences, enrich you in ways that your soul will prosper from (if you learn it, let it and accept it).

2) Whether you’ve known someone for 10 days or 10 years.. carefully and consciously audit the people in your life. Make sure that more often than not, they’re serving you. A friend calling you out on your bullshit is healthy.. A friend calling you out because she’s projecting her insecurities onto you is not. Be so self-aware that the difference is quick and easy to catch.

3) Never be afraid to re-introduce yourself to people. We are infinite beings living a very finite experience. It’s yours and yours alone – so don’t waste one minute being or expressing anything that doesn’t serve you in this very moment.. because the present is all that we really have.

simply shantel


If you made it this far – thank you so much! I hope you have an amazing day and if you enjoyed this post, make sure to show some love on my latest Instagram post!