moving in circles

The week between Christmas and the New Year always feels like a blur. Like seven days of confusion, tentative plans, anxiety to bring in the new year as creatively and happy/healthy as possible.

I like to spend my seven days reflecting, writing, reading a new book. This time last year I was so focused on finding inner peace that I forgot to be thankful for what I have around me. This year, I feel as though I don’t have enough time to appreciate what is right in front of me.

I am entering the final semester of my undergraduate program in the spring and will be achieving my life-long goal of becoming a teacher. I will then be able to flourish with whatever direction I choose to take. I can remain in the classroom as a student or I can create my own classroom. The opportunity for either is a blessing.

But as I sit here, trying to generate a list of things I am grateful for, I find myself struggling.

I am blessed beyond measurable. I have more material things than I could ever truly ask for and I have the love and support of so many people around me. this should not be down played or under appreciated.

However, I find myself more concerned than appreciative as I end 2017. there are numerous people in my life that I feel I am losing connections with. I feel I no longer relate or agree with the people I surround myself with. Whether it be what to eat, religion, politics, or even the definition of dependability- I feel like I have no one to talk to about real things anymore. Small talk fills every conversation.

I hate to say it or feel it or even think it. But I really miss laying next to someone who feels so much passion for the world and sees the beauty in it all. I miss being able to sit across another soul with a cup of coffee and talk about the world, dimensions of the world, ideas about the stars and galaxies, healthy conversations about religion and the human traits of pride and jealousy. I miss being curious and someone igniting that curiosity along with me. I miss seeing the world differently every single morning, finding a new spot in the middle of nowhere to find a new constellation. I miss the novelty of the world that I’ve had in years previous.

Reflecting on this year has proven to be a challenge. This year has been the hardest I have ever experienced mentally, emotionally, financially, physically. I feel like I have overcome a lot of hurdles, busted down a lot of doors but still have so many walls and fears to beat. I have had a lot of support to get me through the ugliest of times but as I sit in my parents basement and watch what has happened this year unfold in front of me- I am not proud of those around me. In a way they belittle me, my beliefs and behaviors simply because it does not match their own. I feel out of place standing in the kitchen amongst them- ashamed of who I am, unable to share my values and beliefs.

I find myself begging for a relationship that existed only half the time for the last 3 years. This somehow feels more complete than the loneliness I feel now amongst people I have called friends for so long.

in 2018 and for the rest of this week, I will praise the temporary nature of everything in life. relationships included. Nothing in life matters as much as mental health and I need to start being an advocate for my own. This may include limiting exposure to certain people who threaten that. experiences are temporary. I mustn’t be afraid to make moves for myself if that means risky the comfort of the people around me including relocation. This year, bravery needs to mean being critical of myself and my actions, standing up for myself and what I believe even if it varies from those around me.

men want a contradiction

men want a woman that is strong, independent, able to thrive in her own world. but they also want a woman who won’t run, who takes direction, who is moldable and plastic.

forget the fat ass, skinny waist oxymoron. this is a contradiction of heart and soul. The most sought after woman is the one who does not need a man, does not want a man but will not disrespect a man or his authority.

men want a woman who loves herself but not more than she loves him.

they seek a woman that they can break and remold and then leave while saying “you were fine before me, you’ll be fine again” pretending they had no influence over her mind and heart.

they want a woman filled with contradictions so as to not receive the blame when they in turn contradict their praises of love with their actions of deceit.

Letters I will never sign, #3

Babygirl, run. run away from the words spitting at your soul, belittling your successes. Run away from the age difference and the restless nights. Run away from the verbal attacks and the flee to somewhere safe. you are not a child, you don’t need a weekly allowance. You are not dependent, you do not need to ask permission nor for forgiveness.

I have lived this hell before. i see your suffering through my own memories. your pain pulls at my heartstrings. I’m watching you walk around the same circle that my footprints litter. I will not hold your hand until you take one foot off the track, until you come to the realization that emerging yourself in this cycle is deadly. you’re stubborn, I get it. you don’t wanna ask for help, you don’t have to.

just run.

find a safe place within yourself. find a love that smothers you with gratitude and beauty rather than throws it at you face with a back-handed compliment.

run.

you are not giving up, you are not quitting. that first step is the most important toward peace of mind and happiness.

run.

its the best decision I ever made.

Letters I will never sign, #1

I wish I knew what exactly happened between us. You left, that is the simplest way to put it. Then, you came back and instead of welcoming you back with open arms as I think you expected, I asked you to leave again. I finally had a sense of who I was without you. my entire adolescence had you by my side- I never questioned my life without you in it. But when you knocked on my door, you found that wasn’t who answered. instead, you found an individual who was scared, hiding behind a veil of strength and new opportunities. Regardless of the fact that this person was dependent, was offering the world to a person who was going to destroy it, I needed you to leave again. I needed you to give me the space to find who I was without your rescue. But you didn’t, you never left. You wanted to be a hero, my hero so badly. You wanted to avoid me being “the one that got away” so terribly that I ran instead. Your persistence, something I used to adore, was the fuel behind my fire. You never expected the word no- you were taken back by the idea I didn’t want a savior. And yet, you utilized every resource possible-searching for a weakness you could exploit. You cut off my resources, you limited the amount of people I felt safe to communicate with, you made me feel as though my life was no longer confidential or my own but that my decisions influenced your life as well. You tried your best to show me the beauty of love, of compassion, of friendship. You simply showed me what happens when two people who have loved each other whole heartedly attempt to forget the passion and befriend one another. This isn’t gonna work.

a day dream (a nightmare)

curled toes underneath stirred sheets.

hair strands scattered across worn pillow cases.

the weight of the world rising up and down with each breath on a sunken chest.

eyelids heavy as the dew on each blade of grass begin to lift, sunlight penetrating her iris.

liquid courage lingering  from the night before presenting itself as a slight discomfort in her temple- no raw courage left to breathe.

the only battle to fight today is the one in her mind. a ping-pong game of thoughts. a back and forth of strength. mind victorious over matter.

a heart longing for freedom, a mind searching for peace. the road to either scattered with debris.

as her hand reaches to lift the sheets she craves the warm breath of advice and guidance. she has gained a reliance on words flowing off others’ tongues.

what she finds instead is a quick rush of cold air sweeping across her bare, freckled skin, reality sending a chill down her spine.

one foot on the floor, the other lingering in the warmth of the sheets- shaking for adventure, shivering from fear.

hesitancy shortening every breath.

an open letter to the future

First off, let me be very clear that I am not apologizing or attempting to minimize myself. this is simply a prelude to the adventure yet to come. This is going to be hard and  guaranteed to be frustrating. There are going to be days in which slamming the door and walking away is inevitable. I will hold my ground and flaunt my stubbornness even when I know I’m wrong. My grudges will fade but only after a kiss on the forehead. I hold my pain close to my heart. Please don’t ask me to share it- rather take me on a walk. Let me rest my head on your shoulder and wrap my arm around your waist. Let’s embrace the silence. I will work through it myself. I can be sarcastic and mean and bound to cross the line. Tell me. I do not want to be belittled but hold me to the same standards at which you keep yourself. I need to be reminded to be humble at times. You earn my respect with blunt honesty and integrity.

I have unbelievable ups and downs. But they happen. They will be exhausting for you and me. I beg for your patience in these times. There will be lots of highs- my smile will radiate. There will be lots of lows- I may not get out of bed for days. I need you by my side for both. Those days in bed, I am allowing my mind to overcome the matter and the best way to remind me of my strength is to play with my hair and marathons of law and order.

I wander. Thats what I do- i get in the car and disappear without warning. Sometimes for a couple hours, sometimes for a couple of days. I grow silent. I bottle every letter that is on the tip of my tongue and I shove them down my throat. I drink-sometimes too much. I”ll take wine straight from the bottle or beer from a can. Keep your tequila. I curse, I scream, I  say shit under my breath. I cry, I grieve, I grow restless. When I decide I want something- there is no turning back. When I decide I hate something- there is no turning back. I will not bring up my political opinions until you disrespect someone’s human rights but I will judge what shoes you are wearing without blinking. I want to go camping and hiking and fishing but goddamn it- I want my bubble bath with candles afterwards. I beg for constructive criticism but the second you question a decision I have made, I will verbally attack you. I am spontaneous but appreciate punctuality and itineraries. I go with the flow but want it to be structured. I need to know what the rules are so I am able to know just how far I can break them. I take people in with open arms but my door is always locked. I want to work with children every day of my life but I do not crave to have one flourish within my womb. The sunset is the most beautiful part of the day but I’ll get up for the sunrise any day.

I contradict myself on the daily- in any conversation, with the clothes that I wear and the attitude I maintain. I hate marshmallows but love s’mores. Get the picture? I will make you cringe, cry, belly laugh, slam doors, drink away your frustrations, throw you surprise parties, and never walk away angry. I will make you crazy, tired, ecstatic. you will question if I am more than you bargained for. but no matter what, I guarantee an adventure.

 

Wings in Time of Danger

She’s beautiful and she’s intelligent. She has a watchful eye and a cautious guiding hand. She provides protection but thrives on adrenaline and close calls. There’s no such thing as learning lessons the easy way in her book and when you decide to throw a few back, you better be ready to keep up. Her frizzy curls are blowing in the wind as she holds on tight to the leather wearing, long haired, scruffy man in front of her on that two wheeled road trip machine. Her freckles shimmer in the sunlight as her smile lights up the room. Think you’re witty? Try again. Her sharp tongue will make you wish you had never opened yours but her laugh will leave your heart happy for days. Her leather skirt makes a traditional wedding contemporary and her sky high heels help your mouth fall to the ground as she walks by with all the confidence in the world. The woman knows no boundaries and certainly disagrees with any form of authority figure. Rebellion is her strongest quality. And despite her atypical lady like manners, she is kind and passionate. She wants the best and will work hard to get it. She is a strong friend and one to be counted on in times of hardship and certainly in times of celebration. A day in her presence makes two without seem like eternity. She is contagious. I didn’t know her well but I know her now. I understand her sense of humor and her wanderlust. She tests me. She pushes me to my limit and forces me outside of my comfort zone. But her hand rests on my shoulder confirming her dedication to adventure. There is not a road I have travelled or a stone I have turned over in which she has been absent. She doesn’t frown upon my mistakes but makes them lessons instead. I’ll meet her again someday. And on that day, I will pour that Yeager down my throat and awe over her stories and experiences while we reminisce on mine. Until then, I will embrace what she gave me: a beautiful smile, curvy hips, freckled skin, wit, and a never ending sense of adventure with a heart as strong as a lion’s. She is my Granny Dee and she is my wings in the face of danger.