Tuesday, January 29, 2013



My guilty conscience is one I would bet on if there was a contest to see how bad a person can possibly feel. There is absolutely no way in hell I would lose. I’m sure this stems from a Catholic complex, being the entire focus of my parent’s acute attention and feeling an anxiety inducing need to prove myself in an affluent area. Also, if I had a quarter for every time someone said to me, “What’s wrong with you?” I would be the most popular gambling-obsessed old lady on a trip to Atlantic City (they play the quarter slots, right? Or is that pennies...) 
This popped into my head yesterday and illustrates my point relatively well. I was in a play in middle school where I actually had a supporting role for once (my director in middle school hated me for unknown reasons.) Do you want to know what I was? I was a french maid and because it was middle school I had long sleeves a knee-length skirt and tights on. I swear, I don’t think a french maid character has ever been so covered up and prudish. We had to perform the show twice during school hours on opening day (which was awesome because we got to skip class.) We were eating lunch in the gym where the youngest kids in school were also partaking in lunch. I threw a chip at my friend (pretty sure I was provoked) she blocked it, the chip exploded when her elbow hit it out of my hand and you’d think that should be the end of the story. No, I was pulled outside with the other girl involved, and a couple kids that had apparently been exploding chip bags. Our group of rambunctious hooligans received a stern talking to. They threatened to take my part away, told us we couldn’t bow in the next show and told us we had to apologize in front of the entire cast for our behavior since we had set a bad example. So, while crying, I apologized to the entire group…for ALMOST throwing a chip. I cannot tell you how guilty I was for having practically pelted a friend with a salty snack. I didn’t get over it for months.
Whilst driving a friend’s car in Chicago one summer I absentmindedly T-boned another car – I was completely lost at the time. The owner of the now nose-less vehicle wasn’t in the car at the time; I was actually going to meet him at the field museum. No one was hurt; the police even said if there was such thing as a “good accident” this was it. The damage to the cars was minimal, they were definitely still drivable, but I swear I cried all the way back to Missouri. The whole time I was thinking my parents were going to make me move back to Kansas and go to community college because of my mistake. I kept thinking I would never meet anyone to marry me; that I had no future. A friend in the car told me at some point you have to stop caring what your parents think and everyone else for that matter, you live for yourself. Even then I knew she was right and to this day I haven’t been able to stop caring.
I’ve apologized for a number of things I never should have taken the blame for and many more things that were most definitely my fault. Things that weren’t that bad, that I was never able to explain, that I took upon myself in order to put an end to something and that someone else caused. It’s relatively easy (except that I like to repeat scenarios in my head over and over dwelling on what I should have done differently.) I have a knack for convincing myself that I’m terrible for whatever I’ve done, I can even perfectly justify why I think I’m the worst person in the world and my life is going to be over. 
Life is entirely too short of these shenanigans, but there's the rub. Everyone knows life isn’t fair. We are well aware of this fact, it’s like knowing you’re going to die one day, but that doesn’t mean we don’t bitch about it. And to avoid being  a terrible person (what does that even mean?) or too bitchy, or bratty etc., I just take it. Don’t get me wrong, if someone was harassing a friend of mine or saying inappropriate things or being racist or something I wouldn’t hesitate to fight about it (and I mean fisticuffs kind of fighting) it’s the smaller things, the passive things that I kind of curl up and take. The grey areas where some people are never held accountable and their conscience isn’t as outrageous as mine. Those in between times when the blame lies on both parties, where there's a difference between standing up for yourself, asking for what you want and being selfish or crossing a line. But then who's right? Who can even judge without knowing both sides, truthfully, with no embellishment?No one.
It's where taking responsibility resides, where you could say honor lives and stuff and junk. Honor sounds like Knights of the Round Table pinky promises and things that aren't things anymore (speaking of pinky promises, my little sis in Big Brothers Big Sisters had never heard of a pinky promise... is that like an old person thing?) Let's be real, you know it's true about "honor." Chivalry is for the most part dead, and honor is kind of going extinct, at least it's on the endangered species list.

I'm no better than anyone else, don't get me wrong. I definitely don't think I'm more honorable (I don't even think people of this generation really contain what was once known as honor, it's like an appendage we evolved without.) I make mistakes (tons of them), wear my heart on my sleeve, cuss too much, talk too loudly, vent, care too much, come off crazy and complain. I'm just really good at punishing myself for being...hm...less than honorable? I wonder how much of a sonofabitch I would be if I just ran wild and crazy without beating myself up all the time. You know that saying that we are our biggest critics? Yea, that's the gospel truth. Well, most of us are at least.

Seriously, if you think your conscience could beat mine in arm wrestling we should throw down guilt and regret stories. I bet mine could take yours.

Basically this was my confession to being my own worst enemy, like that Pink song.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


This is the preamble to a three-part series of posts - they are confessions:

I’m not exactly sure why I decided to be this candid in front of anyone who wants to read this, but I think it has something to do with a type of therapy.  If I write it down and share it I’m acknowledging that I’ve done something, I’m confessing, it’s a penance and something like a punishment - maybe it's just cathartic (not in the same way a T. Swift concert is, a friend gushed once that her concert was a very cathartic experience for him.)

I started out this blog at a really low point. I was writing it as part of my steps toward stability and it did help me recover some of my frail confidence. It continues to do that for the most part as I show the online world how vulnerable I am, my bad choices, flaws and things I’ve learned in attempts to change my frame of mind. 

This is all kind of funny because I just wrote a post about having a bright and shiny outlook, I’m sure I’ll get back there eventually. Right now, this is what I want to say.

"There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed." ~ Ernest Hemingway


I was told recently that I think about the past too much, that I dwell on my former relationships and the irreversible choices I’ve made. This is all true and something that I was already well aware of. Example: I discovered CDs in my car this weekend from two different exes. I don’t know when the last time I listened to them was and I’m not sure why they’re still in my glove box but there they are, one with nothing written on it and the other in Sharpie cursive. 

I’ve only had three exes, three people I wanted to be in a relationship with (if you count my middle school relationship that’s four but I’m not sure anyone does that when the most intimate thing you did was hold hands at the movies.) Two of them I called my boyfriend with a sense of satisfaction I didn’t know possible. In high school, I wouldn’t call my long-term relationship anything, I wouldn’t admit that it was a relationship. I had some nice half-baked "relationships" along the way but none that rivaled those three.  Maybe that’s why I linger so much thinking about them. Without going into any detail, just know all of them ended like a broken bone that you never had set. They bother you and don’t heal quite right and they cause a lot more pain than they ever should.

I can take the blame for the ongoing discomfort; always looking back has a way of tinting everything and making it seem perfect. Even the bad parts can be overlooked and forgotten when you feel like you’re suspended in midair all alone (I imagine it’s what astronauts feel like in zero gravity only emotionally.) It’s scary looking around and having nothing to cling to. So, I’d look back and try to hang onto them to keep me grounded. I’ve never been the type of girl that needed a man , I still don’t think of myself that way, but once I’ve opened myself up to having someone be mine and I theirs it’s like removing a piece of myself to let them go (I assume most of you know what I mean.) I’ve only felt this three times, don’t get confused, I’m not like this with everyone. One of them I couldn’t even say “I love you” to because I was afraid what I felt wasn’t love, I didn’t want to be lying, I wanted to make sure it meant something every time I said it.

There have been periods of time when no one was interested in me romantically at all. Times when I was the friend at the bar, the one that had to be entertained by the friends of a dude that wants to meet the girl friend I came with. This still happens relatively frequently. There were times when a few people liked me at once, where I’d go on one date with someone and decide I didn’t feel anything and that we should just be friends (that was a common occurrence in college.) There were other times when I really liked someone that “friend-zoned” me hardcore. More recently, I’ve had guys at the bar asking for my number. I’ll half-heartedly give it to them thinking I should just give it a chance, to then be so obviously lukewarm and evasive they get the hint and stop trying. Maybe I really am disillusioned with the whole dating thing.

I’ve kind of always thought of myself as a bit bitter, maybe too realistic. I used to say it was because some of my family members had such hurtful experiences involving relationships. I can’t blame it on them. Maybe it came from being told at about 14 by a scorned boy that I'll never get married, and then told again as a 23-year-old. I can't be sure, this is just an aspect of life I struggle with.

So here we are, I melted down recently. Not that I haven’t had mental breaks before, but I would say this one might be the worst (not in terms of depression by any means, just in pure personality-lapse, I didn't react as myself) and triggered my deviation from more amusing posts to, you know, whatever this is. The whole thing had to do with a person, and none of that matters, right now, honestly. I will say however that if I wrote the series of unfortunate events that came to pass I could probably write a pretty decent TV show that could rival The New Girl, The Mindy Project and Girls in awkwardness (and possibly humor, I like to think that in a few months this might be funny.)

Here’s how I explained what I’ve been up to recently in Facebook chat to my daughter that's still in college (pledge daughter that is):

“I've been going to the country bar to line dance, and *                    subsequently melted down mid last week, so I drank for 4 days, proceeded to probably make myself look super psycho, but I'm better now 
I also play soccer”

*Redacted to avoid revealing what happened because at this point it's irrelevant.

I couldn’t really get out of the whole situation unscathed, I could have handled the whole thing better, but I try to handle everything without completely losing it (I'm not saying I don't fail at this sometimes, but in general I tend to not go too overboard.) I think it just wasn’t in me to do it this time. Everyone else gets to fall apart completely, they're usually forgiven. It's kind of like when you get screwed with enough and can't take it anymore you pull a Ralphie (OK so not exactly like that, but emotions are nothing to toy with.) So, it took me from Wednesday to Sunday to do this: 

And I've only kind of achieved the pulling myself together portion

I'm relatively certain the guys I've said "I love you" to have actually both stopped believing I ever meant it for various reasons. I did love them, however, despite my idiocy, poor choices and actions, despite everything they did to me and what I did to them. So, these are my confessions, a little less than a month before Valentine's Day, nearing my 24th birthday. Yes, the past holds me back, it holds a lot of people back because it will always be there. Yes, time heals wounds (kind of) and I know I'll be fine. Eventually, the embarrassment will subside, hopefully it's worse in my head than in real life (not so sure about that one though.) Yes, I am guilty of the typical Southern thinking that I am going to die alone because I can't seem to make this stuff work. Yes, I wish I could go back and react differently (like a lady as opposed to like... the opposite of that but crazy. I don't know what that would be.) Yes, I think I reacted on the side of dramatic and I wish I'd pulled an Audrey as opposed to a Britney, but what can you do. 

And if you think this is weakness you try writing your emotions out, how you're really feeling, try "bleeding" in front of other people. Anyway, no one can be strong all the time. 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

I feel a quarter-life crisis coming on, wait...maybe not

I said something recently that was misconstrued (this actually happens relatively often.) What I said was, “The only good thing about your 20s is being young.” Unfortunately, I said this is in front of a few coworkers that are on the wrong side of 35. They apparently thought I was saying they were old or something. Really I was just trying to say that your 20s are hard. Like, harder than I thought they’d be when I was an angst-filled teenager.

I suppose when I was younger 24 sounded old (I turn 24 in about a month.) Actually, I know it sounded old because when I say it to myself it scares the hell out of me. Funny thing is, I play soccer with people in their 40s and I NEVER think of them as being old. When I think of someone else being 30 I never have images of cakes with gravestones on them and black balloons at birthday parties.
Tell me you get that reference, please. You know when people are getting older and friends give you cakes that say “Over the hill” or something equally “witty.” And there’s a gravestone on your cake and maybe someone gives you a gag walking stick with a mirror and a horn on it. I know that wasn’t just my family. But speaking of my family, my aunt’s 50th birthday was a year or two ago and her cake was shaped like a toilet and had like blue gelatin in the bowl with a chocolate poop floating in it. The frosting read, “Everything goes to shit after 50” or  “After 50 everything turns to crap” or something equally gross to accompany a pastry.

A coworker recently said she was having a quarter life crisis, which I feel like is pretty typical. I’m not sure there’s a person I know that's gotten through the "torturous twenties" (get it? like terrible twos, but I just made it up...whatever) that really wants to go back.

I mean, in your 20s you look pretty good, gravity hasn’t completely destroyed your appearance, running on very little sleep and crackers for lunch still magically works somehow and drinking a tad more than is necessary is accepted and a reasonable way to deal with stress. That stuff is pretty cool. Figuring out where you want to go in the future profession-wise, relationship-wise and mentally being prepared for what that all means is the opposite of cool. It's also the opposite of fun. 

Also, when you turn 24 that song "What's My Age Again" by blink-182 doesn't apply any more and that just totally sucks.
This is it, but you should really know already. 

I like being able to say I'm in my 20s, I like imagining I have a lot of time left, a lot of options, that I could go anywhere and do anything. If I wanted I could move to the Northwest and live with the hipsters or move to Cali to pursue an acting career (or be an extra or something, BUT STILL.) I could move to the Northeast and break out my black leather jacket and dull colored clothes or I could stay here in endless summer to wear shorts and bright, obnoxious patterns. But then again, you don't have to be in your 20s to do any of these things. If you know what's going to make you happy, that should drive you (I'm saying this because I sometimes feel like I've backed myself into a corner and I don't have any options. This is like a reminder to me and maybe it will like help other people or like you or stuff and junk.) 

I know there's so much time for things to fall together. There's room to make mistakes and to do the right thing. There's always time to start doing what you want to do, it just always seems like time is slipping by, that there's never enough or that you are wasting what time you do have. 

So, I'm going to give you some advice some of my soccer teammates told me today. One said "stop and smell the flowers" but the other said "stop and smell the weeds." He said this because his daughter picks the weeds and puts them in a little vase with water. You know, some weeds are the prettiest plants, I know when you were a kid (if you were a girl) you probably made crowns with those tiny white flowery things that were actually weeds. I mean, hello, everyone put dandelions behind their ears when they were yellow and blew all the little puffy things off of them when they looked like little Epcot globes (and if you didn't make a wish you were doing it wrong.)  And I like thinking about it that way better. We already stop to smell the flowers because they're pretty, they're the easy things to enjoy, but the weeds take a little more work but worth it.

I don't know where all this crunchy talk came from, but it sounds good doesn't it? 

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

So, this is the New Year...

In the words of one of my fav bands (Death Cab for Cutie) - "So, this is the new year, and I don't feel any different."

That's not EXACTLY true, but it definitely isn't because the Earth had a birthday or whatever. Remember when I had this blog and I was good at keeping it up and stuff and junk? Well, the holidays put a damper on my creativity and totally wore me out. Excuses, excuses I could have made time or like, wrote a little instead of watching the Big Bang Theory and Family Guy every night before going to bed. I could have done less indulging (read: drinking) when I went back to my own personal winter wonderland in Kansas. I could have refrained from watching EVERY Christmas movie I could get my hands on (that includes The Santa Claus 2... really) with my parents. But I didn't, and here we are in 2013.

Pretty sure the world isn't scheduled to end this year, so that's a cool thing. I say that now and in a few months a crazy zealot will be all over the place talking about something weird that'll wipe us all like an acid rain tornado storm. Which now that I put scary environmental things together like that willy-nilly is actually a pretty terrifying mental image. M. Night Shyamalan should totally make a movie about that. Or Michael Bay because I imagine there would be a lot of explosions involved.

I didn't make any resolutions except for to keep on with my goal of trying to make myself happy instead of worrying about what everyone else thinks. I mean, there's that goal (that everyone should have) of not doing the same stupid shit this year that we did last year.  That one is actually a lot harder than it sounds because I'm pretty sure I've already messed it up, BUT I still have 357 days to keep trying. Or failing. Potato potato... which doesn't actually make sense in print. Potato po-tah-to then, for those of you confused about my phonetic rambling.

I do feel the slightest bit different on this side of the holidays, I'm trying to think about everything being bright and shiny because, well, I hear it's better that way. I've had people tell me that good things come their way because they think good things will come their way. That kind of thinking isn't even related to karma it's just their frame of mind. They want/think they deserve good things and they get them. Simple as that. It couldn't hurt to put on the rose colored glasses for a bit, drink the Kool-Aid and all that (wait). Although the color of 2013 is emerald (see, I'm not making that up) and when mixed with rose I think that would make some sort of breen color (yea, breen, like brown/green.... think I got that from Rocko's Modern Life...) I have a good feeling kinda'.

Do you ever do that thing where you just sit and wonder where you'll be this time next year? Not like imagining where you want to be, but actually wondering what job you'll have, who you'll still be in touch with, if you'll be dating someone, single, living in the same place or if you'll be drastically different. I wonder that all the time. This time last year I was still living in Alabama and it never crossed my mind that I'd be living in Florida in a year. I never thought I'd be working for a print publication, especially not one that focuses on business (remember how I'm bad at numbers...yea.) But here I am. And if I've learned anything, even one night can change everything. One misunderstanding on Halloween can halt a friendship for months, one chance meeting at a bar can lead to taking someone home for Christmas.

Think about it.

Weird, right?