Saturday, December 22, 2012

Every goodbye a lesson

“After a while, you learn the subtle difference between holding a hand and chaining a soul. And you learn that love doesn’t mean leaning, and company doesn’t always mean security. And you begin to learn that kisses aren’t contracts, and presents aren’t promises. And you begin to accept your defeats with your head up and your eyes open, with the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child. And you learn to build all your roads on today, because tomorrow’s ground is too uncertain for plans and futures have a way of falling down in mid-flight. And after a while you learn that even sunshine burns if you get too much, so you plant your own garden and decorate your own soul, instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers. And you learn that you really can endure, that you really are strong, and you really do have worth. And you learn, and you learn. With every goodbye you learn.”
                                                    — Veronica Shoffstall

Three letters for the end of the world

Shockingly, the world didn't end today. As I got to thinking though, I realized I had a few letters I needed to write but never send. If it really was the end of the world, this is some of what I'd say.

Person #1: Even after all this time I still miss you.

I'm not even sure why. Sometimes I think about all the awful things we said to each other and I can't help but hate you a tiny bit. And smile. You always managed to put the same stupid grin on my face and that hasn't seemed to change with time. There's just something about you. You crawled under my skin and no matter how hard I try to shake you, there you are. You once said no one was special because we're all special, but I don't believe that. I can't. Because for whatever reason, you're special to me.

As the days have turned into months your pull on me has gotten a lot weaker, but I'd be lying if I said it wasn't there at all. I loved you. I still do. And even though you never cared enough about me for it to truly matter, I don't do things in half measures. So there you are. This tiny little part of my heart that won't stop beating. You said long ago you learned long ago not to trust your gut. You'd been proven wrong too many times so you had to learn to be cautious. That became the lesson you taught me.

Person #2: I don't love you but I'd be lying if I said it doesn't bother me that you don't love me. I know this makes me a bad person, but I'm amazing and you're an idiot for not realizing it. Sometimes I wish I could feel more for you. Even though I know it'd end disastrously, I can't help but feel a little sad over how indifferent we both are. We've become comfortable with one another and that's always the hardest part. Yet we lack that...something. You once said you weren't sure if you'd ever been in love before. I think that's the difference between you and I. I need someone who knows falling in love is easy but staying in love is hard. That love is like a bolt of lightening that takes no prisoners. I know we care in our own ways, but it's not the same.

And that's kind of sad.

Person #3: The first time I saw you you were looking at me. I could feel the weight of your gaze like a lead weight around my heart. I found myself trying to be funny and witty whenever you were around. I thought I could win you over with my cleverness and only now do I see how very hard I was trying. I knew we didn't have a lot of time, but somehow I thought it would be enough. I tend to do that though. Always putting too much faith in tomorrow.

You came into my life like high tide. I relished in the rush of you even as I drowned in my own expectations. As the water slowly pulled back from the shore though, I was left bereft. I didn't know what to do with myself and the sudden coldness I felt in my bones. I think of you too often. I know this. I think it's because part of me keeps hoping you'll come back into my life. It's not impossible right? High tide and low tide. But I'm tired of being haunted by the hope of something that will never come. I can feel myself being broken down into tiny little flecks of sand and I can't bear it. So know that when I think of you, I think of how to rid myself of you. I'm not even sure you're real. I think you might just be an idea. A reflection of the things I'd like to some day find glittering on the surface.

Please come back.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The best thing you'll read today

I Have A Lot Of Feelings:
I have a lot of feelings. Like, mountains of feelings. And regardless of what people might say, they are not flimsy or aimless — I feel on purpose and with purpose and I don’t take kindly to people who say I’m emotional because I’m a writer or an artist or an attention-seeker or because I was never able to fully shake the teenage-screamo-music-angst from my skin. I feel in big, sleep-consuming ways; this isn’t something I can shake and I don’t think it’s something that I need to or have to or should shake. It’s who I am and I’m proud of the fact that I feel so much.

Because I want to be moved: fully, completely. I want to wake up in the morning knowing that I’m going to feel something, that I’m going to sink my teeth deeply into the belly of this life, that I am going to express myself with honesty and conviction. And sometimes this means that I spend an hour or two curled up in my bed crying over youtube clips of spoken word poetry. Sometimes it means that I’ll grab a friend and run toward the nearest swingset in the rain and other times it means that I will write someone I miss a letter that I will never send.

When a feeling comes on, I welcome it with open arms. I make room for every shade of that feeling, every hue. Sadness isn’t just sadness but grieving, longing. Happiness isn’t just happiness but jubilation, rejoicing, fulfillment. I make a home for these feelings, allowing them space in my heart and my mind. Not forever, but enough to let them coarse through my veins until I feel cleansed. And sometimes they stay for far too long and sometimes they leave too soon, but I’ve learned to be flexible, to allow for their spontaneity.

Feelings can crush us in two ways: they can terrify us into suppressing them or they can intoxicate us and leave us ravaged when they leave. It’s important to know how to feel feelings and not misuse them or warp them into something that they aren’t. And I’m not saying that the only way to process feelings is by screaming them to the world through impassioned op-eds or ultra-violet love letters or breaking down into tears on the subway, but what I am saying is to allow yourself to feel what you feel when you feel it and no matter how maddening or marvelous, to know that all feelings pass: sometimes quickly, sometimes achingly.
As someone who feels things either very deeply or not at all, this post really spoke to me. I like that I am usually friendly and smiling and upbeat. I like that I am moved to tears by pretty much everything. I'm lucky enough to be deeply in tune with the people around me and though it often leads me to feel more than I should, I wouldn't have it any other way. I like feeling alive. Even when it hurts.

Monday, December 17, 2012

I reach out trying to love

I can't stop listening to this song. It's a good reminder that even though things don't aways work out the way I'd like, just being able to feel excited about something is a gift.

It's been a long time coming since I've seen your face
I've been everywhere and back trying to replace everything that I've had till my feet went numb
Praying like a fool that's been on the run
Heart still beating but it's not working
It's like a million dollar phone that you just can't ring
I reach out trying to love but I feel nothing
Yeah, my heart is numb

But with you
I feel again
Yeah with you
I can feel again


Woo-hoo (x4)

I'm feeling better since you know me
I was a lonely soul but that's the old me

It's been a long time coming since I've seen your face
And I've never went back trying to replace everything that I broke till my feet went numb
Praying like a fool that just shot a gun
Heart still beating but it's not working
It's like a hundred thousand voices that just can't sing
I reach out trying to love but I feel nothing
Oh my heart is numb

But with you
I feel again
And with you
I can feel again

But with you
(I'm feeling better since you know me)
I feel again
(I was a lonely soul but that's the old me)
Yeah with you
(I'm feeling better since you know me)
I can feel again
(I was a lonely soul)


Woo-hooo (x4)

(I'm feeling better since you know me)
(I was a lonely soul, but that's the old me)
(I'm feeling better since you know me)
(I was a lonely soul, but that's the old me)
(I'm feeling better since you know me)
(I was a lonely soul, but that's the old me)

I'm feeling better since you know me
I was a lonely soul but that's the old me
A little wiser now but you show me
Yeah, I feel again
Feel again...

New York in Pictures

I've always wanted to see the east coast and I was lucky enough to find a great deal on tickets to New York. The trip was everything I hoped it would be and more. I didn't get to spend nearly enough time walking the streets hopelessly lost, but I'll find a way to go back real soon.

new york1
new york2
new york

The funny thing is I've always thought of myself as a west coast girl. I'm a California girl through and through and I always thought I should stay near my family. But when I set foot in that city of concrete, I home. Maybe it was the high from the vacation, but I think it was more than that. When I used to play house with my friends I would pretend to be a bartender living in a loft above the bar while working my way through college. I like the bustle and the noise of the city. the knowledge that millions of people are all around you and you're just a tiny little person in the big wide world. I loved the subways. The little neighborhood shops. The history.

I have to go back. Maybe for good.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

In which our heroine falls in love too easily

Normally I go through my days with relative ease. I try to get my never ending to-do list as close to completion as I can while relishing the time I get to myself. Things aren't always perfect and I often allow myself to get far too stressed, but for the most part my life has fallen into a happy rhythm.

But then something happens.

You meet a stranger that throws everything off beat. Suddenly your happy little life doesn't seem to fit so well. You find yourself questioning things you were always so sure of. Just days before you would have sworn you knew where you stood and now you find yourself questioning what it is you really want. Things that were completely ridiculous to you, like settling down, seem not so bad. You tell yourself you're just being silly. That this stranger isn't any different from all the ones before. And yet, you know in your heart it isn't true. You can tell by the way every text feels like a gift and the way every word is over analyzed. You start telling your friends all about this unexpected whirlwind that came into your life, even though you know it is far too early to be so excited. You know these things are delicate, that plans easily fall apart and promises made are far too often promises broken.

You do it anyways.

And your friends can't help but get excited with you. They know even better than you how premature your excitement is, but they believe in magic just as much as you do and they want you to be happy. Yet reality has a horrible habit of sneaking in when you least expect it. Even as you dream up extravagant scenarios in your head, your gut tells you something isn't right. As you excuse away their possible waning interest, your heart knows otherwise. "They would make the time if they really wanted to" your heart whispers. "It's time to wake up" your mind says. And the truth slowly seeps in. You realize they are like so many that came before and will unfortunately come again. You really did get carried away and what you thought was something special was really just an idea of something that doesn't really exists. At least not yet. Sometimes a sigh is just a sigh and people are often less than you'd like to believe.
At first you feel slightly cheated. Out of what you aren't sure, but cheated none the less. Anger and resentment make brief appearances, but you eventually settle into a vague sort of sadness. The creeping fear that maybe you aren't gonna find what you're looking for. Maybe magic doesn't exist. You allow yourself to wallow in self pity and start to wonder if it would have made a difference if you were prettier. Or more successful. Or skinnier. But you aren't the kind of person to feel too sorry for yourself and you find new ways to take your mind off things. Movies don't work as well as you'd like, but running is always good. And slowly you realize you aren't doing things to take your mind off things. You're doing them because you enjoy them. That bounce finds it way back into your step and that rhythm you were so quick to throw away becomes the comforting song of your life. Yeah your ego is still a little battered and bruised, but you once again become more and more thankful of all the wonderful things about your life.

Time is too precious it to waste on anyone who doesn't think you're amazing.

So you go along your merry way accepting that love will find you when it's time. If magic was so easy to find it wouldn't be so fantastical would it? You decide you're gonna stop getting so excited from now on. At least not so quickly. You're tired of getting hurt and a little caution could be a good thing for you.

And then you meet another stranger...

Don't ever leave me again internet

I thought the worse part of moving would be all the manual labor and the sea of disorganization that has become my life. Nope. The worse has been going almost two weeks without internet. Luckily for me though, as of today I am plugged in once again. High fives for everyone!

I love you internet. Let's never part from this day on.