Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Don't celebrate the New Year yet - celebrate the last day of 2013!

I'm a big fan of not waiting for your life to "begin."

I'm in school right now.  I've been in school ("in" being used loosely here, as I was home schooled right through high school) since I was 5 - 15 years now - and I have at least another 5 (ungrad/Grad school) before I'm done.  At times, I fall into the trap of thinking, "When I'm done with school, THEN exciting things will happen!  THEN I will travel and be spontaneous and carefree and happy!  THEN my life will begin!"

But, I really don't believe that.  Oh, I'm sure plenty of exciting things will happen.  But my life won't start then, because it started over 20.5 years ago.  There is nothing to wait for; I'm here, living, right now!

So I made a pact with myself: when you're 25, 26, 27 - however old I will be when I'm done with school - don't be disappointed when you look back on your early twenties. 

2013 didn't disappoint me.  I'm enjoying one final day of this lovely year.

To quote Holiday Inn, "Let's watch the old year die with a fond goodbye, and our hopes as high as a kite."

Happy last day of 2013, and have a blessed New Year!

Monday, December 2, 2013


Thanksgiving is the most heartwarming holiday of the year for me.  It's a break from all of the stress of school and homework and applications and studying for finals, and I get to surround myself with my family.

My thankful list for this year:

Lights in my room

Bears game during class

Sweaters that have feet

Blue hair

Leafmageddon in the front yard

Every sunset

Beignets on Mardi Gras

*Going to the casting call for extras for the Divergent movie.  (We didn't make the cut, but my bff's sister has a pretty prominent role!)

*The release of the movie At Any Price.  My mom, sister, and I are all in it, but my mother's the only one visible in the trailer.

*Spots of color in a neutral life

 *Going crazy from school

*Beauty that is unexpectedly found on a train from New York City to Baltimore

*Books books books

*Snow... always for snow

*Using chemistry labs as coloring paper

*Happy reunion with my Br. brother in New York

*Favorite dress of all time (and last minute hotel self-portraits)

*Thanksgiving for days





*Quotes that daily inspire me to be better

*But most of all,

*... having security

Friday, November 15, 2013


Here's another post on depression for you.

I don't remember exactly how long I was depressed, but I remember it being really bad when I was 13.  Once it hit, I withdrew from pretty much everything I enjoyed, I stayed home all of the time, I avoided my friends, I gained a ton of weight, and I spent the majority of my days crying without really understanding why.

I never suffered from a lack of support or love.  I'm not coming from a place of "no one understood, I was completely alone, my life was terrible" - none of that applied to me.

The thing that was the worst about being depressed probably wasn't the crushing weight of a sadness I didn't understand.  It was knowing that I was disappointing people.  Knowing that I was being a terrible friend, sister, and daughter.  Knowing that I was being awful, but believing I was completely incapable of doing anything about it because I just couldn't do anything, and the unbelievable weight of the guilt.

That's the worst part.  The guilt.  No matter what, people are going to make you feel guilty for being depressed.  It may be purposeful - "You don't have any reason to be depressed.  There is nothing wrong with your life.  There are people everywhere who have it so much worse than you."
More often than not, though, it was inadvertent.  My friends would invite me to do something; I would say no.  They would be hurt, because I said no to being with them every time, in favor of staying at home alone.  Of course they were hurt.  They had every right to be.  They didn't know what was going on with me.  As previously mentioned, it is really hard to talk.

They would call me out on it.  Why wouldn't I do anything with them?  Why was I avoiding them?  Why wasn't I there for them when they needed me?

It was terrible. I was terrible.  I knew it then.  I still believe it now.  I missed so much, and hurt my friends so badly, because I wasn't there.  

And so I felt guilty.  I felt enormously guilty because I couldn't be there, because I wasn't there, and for goodness sake why couldn't I do anything?  Every day there was a new thing to feel guilty about.  Every day I was letting someone down because I couldn't get myself to do something, and why couldn't I do anything?

It's been 7 years since those days.  I was finally put on medicine and starting sorting through all of the emotional messes I still had buried within me.  And once I was able to deal with it, I was also able to realize something:

I was sick.  I was SICK.  I had an actual, diagnosed problem, and I was sick.  There was something really wrong.  Chemical imbalances in the brain, or what have you, but it. was. real.  I think a lot of the guilt I had stemmed from the fact that I didn't feel like other people believed that my depression was a real thing.  It was something a dramatic teenager convinced herself that she had in order to excuse herself from doing things.  

No.  It was real.  There was something really wrong with me.
(It is still so relieving to type those words out, even now.)

There was something wrong with me, and - right, wrong, or indifferent - I did what I had to do to get better.  Staying in was better than going out for me.  All of those times I said no were because I was trying to protect myself from further hurt.  I did what I had to do to get better.  It took me years to understand that yes, I had hurt my friends.  I had hurt my family.  The fact that I didn't do it on purpose, or that I didn't want to hurt them didn't change the fact that I did hurt them.  But I also came to understand that they loved me, and since they loved me, they would forgive me.

They have, and it's still just so amazing to know that.

I guess the bottom line is, people are going to make you feel guilty for being depressed, and that really sucks.  But if they really love you, they will forgive you.  In the meantime, you have to do what you have to do to get better.  I wish there was an easy, one-size-fits-all solution for being depressed, but unfortunately that's never an option in life.  Just remember:

1) If they love you, they will forgive you
2) You have to take care of yourself, and do what you need to do to get better
3) Never feel guilty for being depressed.  It isn't something to be guilty about or ashamed of.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

41 half years old

November 4th was my half birthday.  I like my half birthday, because it seems to me that it is just as impressive that I am still alive even 6 months later.
I also like to use it as a point to look back and ask myself, "What did I spend my time on in the first half of this year in my life?  Can I even remember?  What should I do with the rest?"

I reflected on the thoughts that are most prevalent in my mind now, at 20.5 years old.  Though they be childish or overly simplistic, here they are.

* People are hypocrites, and that will be constantly evident throughout life.  But don't go around believing that you are exempt from this.  You too are a hypocrite.  But God forgives you and loves you, and asks that you forgive and love everyone else.

* I never have to apologize for being as nerdy, smart, dumb, needy, sappy, lonely, sad, or joyful as I am.  These are simply states of being, and if they bother other people, it really says nothing about me.

* There are far more people in the world than I ever believed who are like me and who understand me.

* I have trypophobia, which is actually pretty common

* There is a certain sick pleasure in being sad all of the time, and in being a constant state of near-tears.

* First love does not necessarily equal true love.  Nor does the one whom it seems you "belong" with and are "destined to be" with necessarily mean that they are the one you should or want to be with.

* I don't believe that anyone will ever love me better than they love anyone else.  And yet I have faith that I will be proven wrong.

* If the previous statement seems contradictory, that is because I believe that people can love and hate someone, believe and not believe something, both know and not know, agree and disagree, and every other contradiction in the book.  We are more complex beings than even we think.

* I am finally learning what it is like to be confident enough to question everything I believe.

* In the end, people will always have much more control over you than you want to believe they do.

* After being stuck in one place, doing something that I didn't like (but knew was a good thing), it was finally exactly where I needed to be.  God puts us where we need to be... but not on our time table.

* I think there is so much that we don't understand simply because humans, as wonderful and complex as we are, simply are unable to completely open their minds to understanding.

* In a world where people are split into Valjeans and Javerts, I would be a Javert.

* In that same vein: I am so much more dichotomous and judgmental than I want to believe I am.

* And lastly, just a thought & a reminder... some things are enjoyable only in retrospect.

Let's see what sort of wisdom 20.5 - 21.0 holds.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Love is liking people

Wednesday in sociology class we were talking about (brace yourselves) society.

We were talking about Martin Luther King Jr. on the 50th anniversary of his I Have a Dream speech, and what he might say about the world today.  He fought for equal rights for all people, because why should we judge people as lesser than us because their skin is a different color?

People tear each other apart everyday.  People treat others badly just for the fun of it.  I recall this one day I was walking along side of a relatively busy road, heading to Walgreens.  A car drove by, and the person in the passenger's seat shouted something and then intentionally flicked their cigarette butt at me.  It didn't hit me; it landed a few feet in front of me... but why?  Why would it bring them pleasure to throw a burning cigarette at a complete stranger?  Why would it even cross their minds?

Another time, I was turning onto a neighborhood street in my car, windows down.  As I turned, I noticed a girl about my age sitting on the sidewalk right at the corner.  I smiled at her as I turned, and she responded by saying, "What are you looking at, bitch?"

She called me a bitch because I smiled at her?  What reason on earth could she have for insulting a perfect stranger, who was smiling at her no less?

I am under no illusion that I am innocent of behaving this way.  I know that when people in the car behind me who zoom around to get in front of me, it's not because they're personally terrible people.  That doesn't stop me from being annoyed with them and insulting them under my breath.  But why should I feel that way?  I've done that before.  It doesn't mean that I'm a terrible person (I hope).  Why should the perfect stranger (in the car that is now in front of me) any different?

My sociology teacher said it, as simple as it is true: We are all the same.  We're not like dogs and cats, completely different species.  We are all. the. same.  Cut us open, and you'll see we all have a heart and lungs.  We all look the same from the inside.  We are all composed of good and bad experiences, hopes and failures, blood and tissue.

Why do we want to hurt each other?  We are all the same.

This entire post was inspired by this quote from a Peanuts book.

I'm no good at conclusions, but I think that says it all.

Sunday, August 18, 2013


Tomorrow is a School Day.  Tomorrow marks the beginning of my third year at a community college.  

This was not in my plan.  My plan went more like: two years of community college --> Associates Degree --> Two years at a university --> Bachelor's degree --> 2+ years at Grad school --> Master's degree in Speech Pathology --> job --> Marriage/children/live on a horse farm in Italy/&c. 

It's disappointing not to have it go exactly as I wanted it to go, but I do understand that I'm not the one drawing the master plan.  I don't know where every path in my life leads, but I trust that, if I let him, God will guide me down the right one.  I believe 100% that God holds the bigger picture, and I need to surrender any notion I have of being in control and let my burden rest in Him.  

So far, that path is the one that still includes community college and living at home.  In some ways, however, this is still a blessing.  Still living at home means I get to be with my family & pets.  I always have access to a car.  And I  will get to stay at my wonderful job for another whole year.  In this case, the blessings far outweigh the disappointments.

I have had plenty of blessings in this last week before school starts again.

I got to reconnect with my pen pal of 9+ years :)

Spend time with my favorite people

I've been taking a lot of pictures of details, because I always want to remember the little things.

Like how neat the fan looked, reflected in my e-reader

Or how spectacular the sunset was that night (we'll stay mum on the fact that this was taken in a Culver's drive-thru)

Or how sweet my kitty was that day.

I went to see the Arlington Million at Arlington Park, for the 9th year in a row

I spent time at the pool with my favorite people

& celebrated half-birthdays and last-days-before-school with Thai food and cookie sundaes.

Here's to another great school year!  (Blerg)