Welcome to Real Women Wednesday.
This series is to empower and inspire women around the world. Every Wednesday I release a Q&A with a remarkable woman who I’ve connected with and/or admire. The mission for this series is to ignite the fire within whoever is reading this while being introduced to women whose fire is burning bright.
It’s about growing our sisterhood and developing the understanding that all women are divine beings. While we’re all different, we each bring wonder and love in this world. Isn’t that a beautiful thing worth sharing?
This Wednesday’s woman goes by the name Kira Hak. I first connected with Kira through Jocelyn, last Wednesday’s RWW. Jocelyn thought that Kira would be the perfect fit for a Q&A and I couldn’t agree more! Kira founded the blog Adventure Haks, which I love following. She is full of adventure, gratitude, and love for the world. I want to have the kind of adventures Kira has when I grow up!
Let me introduce you to Kira Hak!
Tell me five things I don’t know about you
I took Criminology at the University of Windsor for 1 year before dropping out and moving to Kelowna. That was 8 years ago. Since then I have completed a business diploma at Okanagan College. It took me 1.5 years longer to complete because I was working full time so that I could pay for it without getting a loan.
I am a voracious reader and a compulsive note taker. I’ll read anything and I’ll write down everything from lists and ideas to concepts and quotes.
I like tacos. I eat them 2-3 times a week. I actually ate them for breakfast and lunch today. Okay, so maybe it is more like 4-6 times a week.
This one will probably surprise quite a few people but I have an irrational fear of swimming in lakes/the ocean (but I love scuba diving). My husband is currently helping me overcome it. I have swam in 5 lakes this past month (and he only held my hand once, ha!).
I make my bed every morning. Even if I wake up at a friends house or at a hotel.
Where is home for you?
Home is a more of a feeling than it is a place for me. It is things like the warmth of a fire when the air starts to cool, the comfort of a cozy bed after a long day, and the weightlessness I feel when my husband wraps his arms around me.
You’re in need of some alone time, where do you go?
To a yoga class, the beach with a good book, or hiking – being in nature always helps clear the internal and external noises.
What has been the happiest moment of your life?
The day I quit my 9-5 job. Although I didn’t know it at the time because I made that decision during a really difficult time in my life. My step brother had passed away unexpectedly the week before and I was still right in the middle of my grief for my Oma and Brother-in-law, who both died the year before.
I really didn’t plan on going into work that day and quitting. I went to work, like any other day, and realized an hour into my shift that life was way too short to waste another day being unhappy. I had to make changes and the first change was leaving my stressful job. It is unfortunate it took all that happening for me to finally learn but if there was a positive it was that.
It has been just over two years since that happened and I feel like I have been thriving since. Losing so many close people in such a short time and being at an emotional rock bottom is what gave me the courage to put the fear aside which I think is what holds most people back. Fear of the unknown. Fear of judgment. It is what held me back. In letting go of the fear and focusing my energy on the things that brought me joy, it also helped me gain a whole new confidence and sureness about myself that I had never experienced before.
Think back to your childhood… what memory came to mind?
I have written out the answer to this question and deleted it a few times because I couldn’t decide if I should be honest, force up a happier answer or just make something up. I truly wish the memory that comes to mind when reading this question was a good one. But, it isn’t, and that is my truth.
The memory is the first time that my mother tried to commit suicide. Whenever I think or talk about it my heart still starts to race and I feel that tightening of the stomach, you know that nervous feeling in your core when something bad has happened. I don’t know if I can fully explain how it feels to have the one person you love most in this world, the person who makes you feel safe, tell you that they don’t want to be in this world anymore. The blame, guilt, sadness and anger that this brings up in you.
I remember it so vividly. I was sitting on my bed reading like I did every night before bed, when my mom came into my room and told me she had to show me something. She sat down on my bed and pulled up her sleeve and showed me cuts on her arm and explained to me what she had been trying to do. I was 10 or maybe 11. It was the year 2000 anyway. I was so angry and scared. I made her promise me not to do it again and then I stayed up that night until she drank herself to sleep. She had always drank a lot but I had never really thought anything about it until this night. She was typically a happy drunk. After she fell asleep I went around the house and collected every knife, scissor and blade I could find, wrapped them in a towel and hid them in the back of my closet. It was from that day forward I became a mother to both her and myself and why it is such a defining moment for me.
Where do you feel the happiest?
By the water, under the sky and/or in the mountains.
What does being a woman mean to you?
Accepting myself as I am; in mind, body and spirit. Being kind to myself and others. So I guess being a woman to me is just being a human.
How do you think we (as women) can help build friendships/relationships instead of competition between ourselves?
By building a better relationship with yourself. I think competition stems from thinking that we are not enough so finding out why you are telling yourself that story and focusing on connecting with yourself is the first place to start.
How do you work on yourself and improve your mental health?
I want to start off by saying that I think self-care is SO important. You can’t be a good friend/spouse/parent/etc if you don’t take care of yourself first and I wish more people made this a priority.
I read books & listen to podcasts. I hike, write, do yoga and/or meditate to clear my head and organize my thoughts. And of course coffee dates & real talks with my best girls.
I also go to counseling. I used to only go when things got really tough I recently started going once a month. It has been beneficial for so many reasons.
What words of wisdom did someone important share with you?
This past winter I went to a talk about addiction by Dr. Gabor Maté. At the end, during the book signing, I asked him where someone should start in healing after trauma. His response was “Stop focusing on the trauma and start focusing on how to connect with yourself again.” As obvious as it sounds it wasn’t a way I had looked at things before. It was shortly after this that I began counseling and the beginning of a whole new healing process that I didn’t know I needed.
If you could tell a teenage girl/young adult one thing, what would you say to them?
Jeez, only one thing!?
I would tell them that they are enough and they are loved. And then I would give them a big hug.
How do you think the world is different for younger generations?
How connected we are. Kids were mean when I was in school. I can’t imagine what that must be like now that people are able to hide behind their computer screens.
What are your thoughts on social media and being able to connect always?
I have a love/hate relationship with social media. It is the best and worst thing. I use social media so that I am able to do what I love and still make money, but I also love when I am completely off-grid and disconnected from it. I think the important thing for everyone is to find a healthy balance and know when it is time to put the phone down. And hey, I’ll be the first to admit that I struggle with that.
Hello, me again. I just want to say a HUGE thank you to Kira for taking part in RWW and answering these questions. The answers that we all read were thoughtful, real and from the heart. Not everyone remembers positive memories first and that answer really hit home with me.
Thank you, Kira, for being so vulnerable. Kira is actually packing up her house with her husband and driving to South America and back on their motorcycle. What a year she will experience!
Are you wanting to read previous RRW posts? Catch up here.
If you’d like to be featured on Real Women Wednesday, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or reach out to me on social media. My handle is @thebookofmolly.