Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Part of Life's Eternal Rhyme

I took a walk this morning. I need to get back in the habit of exercise, light as it may be. I also need to do something with my newfound clarity. I realized that this clarity brings with it a numbness. Not a choking, crippling, or bitter numbness, but a numbness that is allowing me to separate emotion and thought and really focus on the experience.

This must be something that normal, rational, less ardent people evidence on a more regular basis.

A walk seemed like a good thing to accompany that.

Well, at the end of today's sorting time, I started to actually look around. I opened my eyes and started to fully take in the picture that I'd been walking through.

Yes, I'd noticed the ducks and the geese. I'd politely smiled and nodded and greeted fellow walkers with a sincere good morning, and I watched the squirrels scurry about doing whatever important business was so important that they had to scurry about to get it done. I'd even been aware of the gravel crunch underfoot from time to time. But I'd been so busy focusing on the images in my head that I didn't really open my senses to the day.

It's a great time right now, weather-wise. It's chilly and windy, but not so cold that you can't talk yourself out of staying in bed. My only necessary defense against the cold was a sweatshirt and a scarf. And the sky is a disarming shade of blue gray that seemed content to settle over the green water and against the occasional red of my little trail.

It all makes for quite the scene, and alone it would surely be enough. But today brought an added bonus. Today the prettiest thing was the leaves. Taking them in I realized that it actually looks like Fall. That pretty much never happens in Texas. So imagine my delight walking the path along the lake, seeing that the leaves were making a delightful background of red and yellow and orange and brown and green. It was lovely.

Do you know what lovely means? I looked it up once. Beyond the idea of being "delightful to the eye, heart, and mind" or "highly pleasing", which are both beautiful and warming, was the definition: "capable of being loved." You are lovely. You are capable of being loved. You inspire the greatest and strongest most powerful emotion there is. It's been one of my favorite words for as long as I can remember because there is something so sweet about that idea.

This morning, the leaves were lovely. And then, more than that, they were loved.

They inspired warm feelings and made me start thinking about the fall. And how beautiful it is. How the colors in the trees stood against the sky and then shared that same beauty scattered on the ground as they fell. And the loss. For a minute, the loss. And after that minute, I realized, maybe Fall isn't about leaves dying. Maybe it's about the trees accepting change.

I fight change all the time, but it's one of the most natural things in the world. The trees accept that their leaves must die in order to start anew. That needs to happen. But if only it were that easy. I don't fight change because I'm stuck in my ways or afraid of new things. I fight it because I don't know what it means for holding on.

Isn't holding on a part of that eternal optimism? Isn't holding on about faith? Isn't holding on about keeping hope alive and fanning the flame when it threatens to burn out? Does change mean I can't cling to these things I hold so dear?

Change. Acceptance. Hope. Holding on and letting go. What's smart and what's right. Balance. These are not things I claim to fully know or understand. I wish I did.

Maybe I can take a nod from the trees. Maybe I can say that the leaves may change, but the roots stay the same, and that which grounds us is most important. That time makes you stronger to the way things have to go. That our branches will still reach out. Any combination of things to make me feel better. I want to feel better. Maybe I did for a moment. In a lot of ways I still do. I haven't lost my clarity. I haven't lost my peace. But I just get so easily attached to my leaves. I want to keep them forever. My leaves are lovely. My leaves are loved.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

A Few Christmas Random Thought Fun Facts

Earlier this year, I got tired of people playing Christmas music and indulging in Christmas things too early and not taking the time to celebrate the sincere and gracious holiday that comes before it. To combat this, I ruled that you may listen to Christmas music the day after Thanksgiving IF you have not lusted for it in your heart. If you have, and your appreciation of Thanksgiving has suffered for it, then you must wait until December 1st. This rule extends past music and to other Christmas celebrations.

Well, Thanksgiving is over. And I did not lust for Christmas in my heart. So, guess what?

Yep, I've opened my mind to Christmassy things. And since then, Christmas thoughts have been flooding my brain almost non-stop.

Again - it's okay, it is allowed.

Well, I have a few Christmas oddities that I realized I have and am now sharing. Because sharing is caring and 'tis the season!

1. Two of my favorite (and most quoted) commercials of all-time happen to be Christmas commercials.

This one:

And this one:

2. Whenever I use the phrase: "I'll take it" I either say it like Donna Reed in "It's a Wonderful Life" or immediately think of her afterwards.

3. When I was little, I used to sing that the lyrics were "Later on, we'll perspire as we dream by the fire." It made sense to me. Fire is hot.

4. As much as I love this movie now, when I was little it used to freak me out. At least the intro by David Bowie did. Something about the way he talked. "Walking in the Air" gives me chills.

5. I still think of Frosty whenever I tell someone Happy Birthday. I sometimes tell them like him.


That's all for now. Just a few things that were on my mind. Take this knowledge and tuck it away in your heart. You never know when you're going to be on Jeopardy.

Friday, November 23, 2012

A B-Movie Christmas Special!

This is the story of my Christmas earrings.

But not like the actual story, because that's not really very entertaining. Well, it's not movie-worthy. That story is just that I happen to love Christmas earrings and have acquired enough that for the past few years (maybe 7?) I have been able to wear a different pair of earrings every day from December 1st through Christmas. More fun fact than silver screen.

Well, I had a friend send me a text message today to tell me about her niece who is wearing her Christmas earrings. It was a victory. A true triumph of the human spirit. Get 'em started young, folks. I mean seriously, when my friends start having kids, they will be getting Christmas earrings from their crazy aunt Tabitha all the time! (Or, you know, every Christmas)

Btw, they totally aren't out of the woods if they have boys. I'll find something to supplement it. I mean, what if they end up having girls and boys? Or just boys? It wouldn't be fair to leave a kid out of an awesome present just because they're not a girl. That would be sexist, and I believe in equality. I can't guarantee that they won't be giant light-up singing buttons or A Christmas Story-esque bunny suits, but eh, cross that bridge when we get to it.


Because I have been sucked in to social media, I tweeted about being reminded that Christmas earring season was upon us. This led to another friend asking if I had found my missing ones. Yes, sadly, some of my Christmas earrings had gone missing. In a few moves and travels, my earrings managed to become separated. I did find some, but now I don't remember where I put them. This is equally distressing.

But out of tragedy comes art! From the ashes, rises the Phoenix! The night is darkest before the dawn! This is all very dramatic stuff.

I still have about a week to reunite them. Thinking about this I realized that the reuniting of the Christmas earrings is like a B-movie Christmas special. And one should stay tuned for a "Saving Christmas" movie special with a special guest appearance by Santa. (That's a lot of special!)

I don't think I'm quite ready for script writing. This is all very conceptual. It's a process. I think I have to be artistically tortured and mope around wearing black for awhile in order to get this done. So, I'll start with the bare bones. Flesh it out later. (I've always liked that imagery.)

I was told that every good Christmas movie has to have an underlying love story. First, I thought maybe I would be in there, and the love of my life would be trying to return the earrings, but maybe I'll take myself out of the equation and just have a pair of earrings that have been separated. They have to find each other. And save Christmas with the power of love. (Cue Huey Lewis & the News)

But here's the cast of characters.

- Santa (duh)
- Christmas earrings (CG animated, not unlike the Smurfs)
- Maybe a reindeer
- Orphan child
- Clueless owner
- Antagonist of some sort

Here's the story-line so far:

I'll play the clueless owner. I'll be kind of like The Master in A Brave Little Toaster, or Andy in Toy Story. Wonderfully loveable, and unaware of their inanimate objects' ability to be animate. My earrings are not only trying to get back to each other, but they're trying to get back to me before I notice that they're missing. They have a calendar and know that the amount of time to get back to me is dwindling. Then maybe they meet up with Santa and have to help save Christmas. And there's a little orphan child that wants to believe in Christmas and Santa but everything and everyone is working against him. And the earrings help him to believe and the magic of Christmas restores everything and everyone! There might also be a unicorn. Who has always wanted to be a reindeer. and that's where the reindeer comes in. And the earrings all have these crazy personalities that match what they actually are. Like, my polar bear is a little grumpy or maybe addicted to Coke. (The drink, not the drug - family friendly, y'all). And the penguins will be quirky. And the little Santas will be TOTALLY confused when they meet Santa because they kind of believe that they ARE Santa. And the bad guy could be an earring whose partner was thought to be destroyed a long time ago so now he's bitter and angry and wants the other earrings to suffer like he has. But he isn't really bad, he just is lonely and wants the others to stay with him and acts out of desperation. Hmmm. Maybe he can replace the need for an orphan. There could be an act of self-sacrifice, or maybe he finds love anew. In a script this all makes sense and all the loose ends are tied up neatly in a beautiful Christmas bow. But seriously, sometimes continuity and competency is just overrated.

It's a work in progress, but I think I've got something here. I'm gonna end up selling it to Hollywood eventually. Maybe someone from Lifetime or the Hallmark channel will pick it up. But I'll only sell if they can guarantee that my art will not be compromised. Or they offer me the right amount of money. Same difference.

P.S. Still working on a snazzy title. Maybe "Listening for Christmas" or something that makes sense and also ties into ears somehow.

P.P.S. The title will TOTALLY be mentioned in the movie, because that's one of my favorite parts of movie watching - where I understand where the title came from.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


Last night I went to sleep super early. Really early. As in, my body woke up several times in small increments starting at about midnight that went on for a long time until I finally gave in and got up at 5:30.

And somewhere in those groggy, semi-conscious states of indecision about waking up, something interesting came through. I think it was clarity.

There's a quote from Peter Pan that I happen to really love. It's: "You know that place between asleep and awake, the place you can still remember dreaming? That's where I will always love you, Peter, that's where I will be waiting."

I like it because it's kind of sweet. It's sad, but sweet. There's a place where whatever you want to feel is safe. Where even if you're not supposed to feel something, you still can. Because it's between dreams and reality. And having that feeling of love is reality, but it stays a dream because maybe you're not supposed to feel that way in real life but you can in a dream. I don't know if that really makes sense, but it kind of does in my head.

Of course, that's not what I'm even really thinking about. I was thinking about that reality-dream place. I'm inclined to believe that there are a lot more feelings and ideas that exist in there. It's more than a safe haven for feelings that can't live in reality. It's a place where true thought can exist. There's enough of the dream feeling to let you believe that anything is possible and enough reality to grasp whatever you're needing to deal with but not enough allow you to tell yourself "no."

I was in that place this morning. And it was wonderful. I don't think I fully understand what exactly it was that gave me this feeling of clarity. I can't remember. But there was a moment where I felt at peace.

I've been looking for that peace for a long time now. And every time I thought I found it, something else came in and knocked me off my feet. The hits just kept coming. They were real hits, but I know a lot of what kept me on the ground was me. My irrational, one-dimension, self-doubting, easily influenced brain kept getting in the way of the peace that was so within my reach.

I'm actually a little afraid and yet inclined to believe that it was a test of faith that I was failing miserably at. And God kept giving me hints and I just wouldn't take them. It's like those questions you find on exams sometimes that your professor is trying to help you with. The ones that are dead giveaways. The ones that have the same answer next to every single option on your multiple choice test. And I just kept staring at my paper saying, "Nope. No way. It's way too easy. It's gotta be a trick somehow." even though God would never do that to me.

I wasn't letting myself trust him because I had convinced myself that I was fighting my own thoughts. And the truth is that I was fighting his reassurance and listening to my own irrationality. And that's just plain stupid. Because we know who has the upper hand in these kinds of things.

I knew the answers. They kept coming through, and in so many ways. I thought about some of what I wrote in my last post. The part about knowing that God is looking out for me. Maybe my half-awake dream state was channeling that to teach me something.

I think I learn about myself when I write. The words just shoot out of my fingers from my head and all of a sudden I am terribly aware of something I'm feeling. Sometimes I read over a post and think, "I was feeling that? I really feel that way about myself? I actually think that?" Honestly, a lot of the time I feel like blogging is an experiment in free-association writing that I didn't even know I was taking part in. And now, I just may finally believe these things that I write. That I'm okay or at least will be. That I have true support, and the best kind at that.

I found clarity. I found peace. Now I just need to hold onto it. I know who I'm fighting now. I know that I have been my own worst enemy in this one particular situation. I'm calling for a cease-fire. We're down to negotiations. And we're gonna sign a treaty. And when I get tempted to go back on the terms, I'm going to come back here. And remind myself to keep the faith. Because

- Everything happens for a reason.
- If it's meant to be, it's meant to be.
- Everything in his timing.
- There is something amazing in store for me.

Now, just believe.

Sunday, November 18, 2012


Can I say something that might sound crazy?

I know. Most of what I say can be skewed that way, but I don't really think I'm going there this time.

What I mean to say is that I was just thinking about something. And now, because I wasn't going for crazy, I am suddenly in a place where what I am wanting to say has reminded me of Hamlet, which seems somewhat off the beaten path and I promise I didn't mean to go there. But there's a wonderfully snarky scene wherein Polonius asks Hamlet what he is reading and Hamlet replies, "Words, words, words."

And if you asked me what I was thinking about right now I'd answer the same way Hamlet did. Only it wouldn't be snarky, because to be snarky I'd have to reply, "Thoughts, thoughts, thoughts."

Truth is I am thinking thoughts. Thoughts about words. Thoughts about the importance of words, and the weight of words. The consequences of words. Finding the right words. Recognizing the wrong. And knowing when to not use words at all.

I happen to love words. I've been told I am good with them. Not to say that I'm some great writer or speaker or something, I just mean that when someone needs words, I'm pretty good at coming up with the ones they need to hear. It's a blessing, really, I know that. But because I can find the right words for other people, I often find myself hoping that I've found the right ones for me. Though, I rarely feel that I have.

I have trouble convincing myself of things sometimes. I can find words for many a scenario and situation, but when I try to apply them to something that's really for me, that's really important, I lose faith. I don't trust myself.

Sometimes I feel like the story of my life is, "She wanted to say..."

And I hate that. Because there are times where you don't speak. There are times when your actions are so much more important and the best thing you can do is just to say nothing. But there are also times where your actions betray you and everything in your head is screaming the words that you feel are right. The words that go so against the things you're doing. The words that go against even the words that you let yourself say. And sometimes that hurts people. And most times that hurts you. Because you hurt for yourself and them. And why should someone else hurt because I couldn't get my head together? Because I couldn't find the right words for me? To say what I really felt. The words that could have helped us both.

And this is really hard to write for some reason. Maybe because it's really honest. Vague, but honest. Or maybe because I know that the feeling of wanting to say something and not doing it is so closely tied to the things that just may be regrets in my life.

I know that I don't really believe in regrets. I believe that everything happens for a reason. I believe that everything happens in its time. I believe that God is in control and there is a plan and he works with the decisions I make and he loves me and is looking out for me. But I have this tendency to run things over and over and over again in my brain. And when I land in a situation that's not so good, I do that even more. I fixate. I replay every single moment, every single word, and I imagine every single possible scenario and try to see where I could have changed things. I second guess things that I know I can't change. And I blame myself in those moments - where I wonder if things could be different had I trusted myself with what I feel were the right words.

And I know that I'm responsible for my own actions and that at the end of the day everything is going to be alright and that worrying does nothing. I read that "Worry does not empty tomorrow of its troubles, it only drains today of its strength" and that couldn't be more right. It's just those sometimes moments. Those will get you.

This sounds terrible now. It's an awful mix of self-pity and delusion that I can't quite keep the optimism out of. Honestly, it's a mess. But in the morning, I'll wake up and I'll be okay. I'll probably be okay before I close my eyes and go to sleep. Maybe even as soon as I finish writing this post. The strange thing is, I don't think this is what I was going to write. In fact, I'm pretty sure it's not, because I started to write because I was thinking about a story that didn't even make it here. A story about last words, and my thoughts about them and how I've woven that into my life. I guess it actually would fit here, but I think I'll save it for another time.

Right now, I'm done. And I swear y'all are going to think I have some serious issues, but this particular outlet of writing knows no limits. I need it for all the emotions in my head. Things I write about aren't necessarily the things I deal with all the time or thoughts that are constantly weighing on my mind. It's just that I needed to clean out some of the corners of my brain. Because looking at it in words kind of makes me feel like I'm confronting something. And maybe this time, in this way, words are on my side for me.

And maybe "nonsensical" is truly the right descriptive.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Some Thoughts I Thought

Okay. It's been awhile. I haven't written. I'm a bad person. I don't deserve your love, people have suffered, and the children, for god's sake, what about the children?! Blah, blah, blah.

I know. I promise. I know. But I am going to make it up to you. Or at least offer up a reconciliatory post that may or may not appease you. But seriously, if I'm gonna make an attempt then you can at least meet me halfway. Put aside your annoyance with me, chant some new age mantra that makes you feel better, and be prepared to enter my mind.

This is the part where if this was an old timey cartoon from the time of awesome cartoons before people started ruining cartoons the screen would flash some weird black and white swirly hypnosis thing in the background while the image of my head growing slightly larger and then smaller to make it appear as if it was moving towards and away from you at the same time would be there. And my eyes would be glowing and "be prepared to enter my mind" would be said in an ominous, kinda wavy voice, like the way someone would say, "OoooOoooh" if they were trying to be scary. Used to be scary. Nowadays it's usually more sarcastic.

Got that image? Okay, let's try it again then, for funsies! Imagine all those things. See the swirls? My head right in the middle of the screen? Glowing eyes? Okay, now:

"Be prepared to enter my mind!"

Awesome! Am I right??! 

You know, if you wanted to, you could even try something like, "BE PREPARED! To enter...MY MIND!!" And "mind" would be the most wavy sounding word of them all.

Of course, feel free to use any other variation that gives you ze goose pimples! Maybe even throw in some creepy finger motions. Like horizontal spirit fingers, but slower, and creepier, and not stupid. 

Yay! We're having fun!

Well, then. Now that we're all happy and excited and hopefully prepared to enter my mind, (Yes, there was a takeaway in there. It's like I just made learning fun, y'all.) here goes:

I learn random things all the time. And then I fixate. And my brain goes off on little tiny tangents. Here are a few of the things I heard, their tangents, and then the subsequent tangents of those tangents. Yay!  

New Knowledge: The king of hearts is the only king without a mustache on a standard playing card.

This is probably because he is the king of hearts and realizes that not a lot of women like mustachioed men. I'd say that I'll never date a man with a mustache, but when you say those kinds of things they usually end up happening. Like there was a town my mother said she would never live in and then BOOM, one day, we totally lived there. It's risky to say things, folks. Even to think them sometimes. But not like the way Big Brother in 1984 would make it risky because you have to worry about the Thought Police. No, just risky in the way that you feel it's risky because you are more than just "a little stitious" like Steve Carell as Michael Scott, but are almost full-blown crazy superstitious at times like me and if you don't knock on wood things are about to get really bad. Bt-dubs, I'm totally knocking on wood right now.

Also, thinking about 1984 made me think of this commercial that I think is awesome even though I'm not even really a big fan of macs. I'm sure it's somehow relevant.

New Knowledge: The average human body contains enough fat to produce 7 bars of soap. 

Is there some serial killer out there making people soap?? It'd have to be some crazy lady peddling her people soap at local craft fairs. And everyone would think she was so sweet and nice and precious and just your typical middle aged soccer mom with a squeaky clean past except for the killing people to make soap! Which is morally wrong on multiple levels because it's murderous and also kind of greedy because she's turning a profit. And she'd have scents called things like, "Russell" and "Jane". And everyone would ask about why they were named that and then believe her when she explains that Russel is a dear friend who smells like mint and Jane has always liked lavender when that's NOT the case AT ALL. She just made Russel and Jane soap smell like that and I don't care how cute they look in shades of light green and purple tied together with bits of twine, because it's just not right! And this is why I'll NEVER buy soap at a craft fair. Especially if they have sketchy people names. I'm onto you lady, and I'm calling the cops. 

New Knowledge: Humans are more likely to believe a statement if it rhymes.

"If it doesn't fit, you must acquit." I have been enlightened. I suddenly understand the O.J. Simpson trial. And I'm also kind of wondering how often this type of thing has worked. How many other crazy things have happened because the human ear is susceptible to pleasant sounding rhyme patterns? And more importantly, can I use it to my advantage? For instance, "You should give me your money, because bees make honey." Is it working? Because I will totally set up a paypal account right now and we can do this! Or maybe, "You know you love me, because the sky's above me." Are you having unusually strong feelings for me even though we've never met? Do you have an urge to be my best friend and buy a breakable heart-shaped "BE FRI - ST ENDS" necklace so that we can each wear half? This is a feeling possible without rhyming, though, so I don't know if I can really depend on that one. And I don't know if there really needs to be a fact in the statement. I need more guidelines. Except that if I went to anyone for guidelines it would probably be someone who typically exploits the rhyming rule and they wouldn't want me to use it because they've become all selfish and absorbed with the power of the rhyming enough to want to keep it all to themselves and they'd tell me something like, "The rhymes don't work, and you're a jerk" which is both hurtful because if it does work I'd believe them but it also might answer my question because the second half is certainly not a fact but now I know that it does/doesn't work and you know what else? Infinite loop. Stuck in it. Thanks a lot.

New Knowledge: The chances of dying by laughter are 15 billion to 1.

Takeaway? It's still possible. And I think it would actually be a kind of nice way to go. I mean, people tend to be sad about death. That's totally natural. And usually people can find a way to buck up after awhile, but it's not easy and it's rarely immediate. But when someone asks, "How did it happen?" and you say, "She/He died laughing" you can't tell me that wouldn't surprise just about anybody! It's so ridiculous that you kind of have to stop and appreciate the comedic wonder of it. And maybe you'd even think, "Yeah, So-and-So would be the one to go laughing. She/He would definitely do that." And then maybe people would smile. Which, if you're the kind of person who died laughing, would actually make you happy. And you'd be in heaven glad that you could give your loved ones that comfort. Plus, you'd still be kind of super pumped about the inevitable conversation that you get to strike up with people you know and meet in heaven:

"So, how'd you get here?" 
- "Laughing."
"I'm sorry, what?"
- "Oh, I died laughing. Yeah, 15 billion to one and you're looking at the person that beat the odds."

Kind of awesome. And the person or thing that made you laugh would become super famous. It'd go down in history books. And a whole bunch of people would seek out the cause because they are brave or maybe really foolish and would listen or watch so that they could have bragging rights. "Yeah, I heard/saw him/her/it. And I'm still kicking." But there would probably have to be some kind of warning that comes with listening to/watching whatever it was: "Witness at your own risk. May cause death by laughter." It would add a whole new definition to "That comedian kills 'em!" if it were a person. Though, I wonder if they'd be tried for murder? Involuntary manslaughter, most likely. That would be one for the ages. 

Of course, if your own thought made you laugh, is that suicide? Unintentional suicide. I'm pretty sure suicide by laughter is lacking mens rea. Maybe that's one the world will never know.

New Knowledge: 27 Million years ago penguins were five feet tall. 

Did that make them more loveable? Because penguins are already pretty gosh darn awesome! (Pardon my language) I mean, when I was a kid, I thought that those my-size Barbies were pretty cool. Now imagine a my-size penguin! Only it's better than a my-size Barbie because it's actually real and you could give it a full-on hug and it would hug you back and do adorable penguin things and okay, I've answered my own question - the height increase totally makes them more loveable! 

Unless they were rogue penguins. Like maybe penguins that had some really horribly traumatic thing happen to them when they were little. And then they start to bully other penguins and then those penguins got scared and that will lead them to the dark side because fear leads to anger and anger leads to hate and hate leads to suffering and did you penguins learn nothing from Star Wars??! And then there was a penguin apocalpyse and they all fought each other but the smallest and smartest and maybe bravest of the penguins refused to fight, and they fled to start a new life on their own. A brave new world. And that's how we have modern day penguins and why they are so loveable. Because they are descendents of penguin pacifists. But if I had a time machine I would totally still go back to meet the 5-foot tall penguins. Because maybe I could get there in time to help those penguins with troubled pasts, because at 5 foot 3 and a half, I could give them awesome hugs. And then penguin war would never start. And we'd have wonderful 5-foot tall penguins that everyone could love and hug and invite over to your house to play "Don't Break the Ice" because you've really always kind of wondered if penguins are good at that game.

But really that's just a dream because I know better than to use a time machine because it would mean risking messing up the space-time continuum. But a girl can dream. A girl can dream about loveable, huggable, 5-foot penguins all she wants.

The end.

Well, not the end of the post. I just didn't wanted to somehow distinguish that we were not leaving the main part of the tour and heading for the wrap-up.

Those were some thoughts. Long post, maybe? But this is the kind of post you can stop and come back to. The bolded words separate thoughts. Maybe I should go back and leave a note about this up top, but I'm probably not going to. Because sometimes we learn best from experience.

There's a lesson in that. You are now a wiser person, and you're welcome.

Monday, November 12, 2012

And then I called the Cowardly Lion...

...because I somehow knew he'd understand.

I haven't had this blog long, but I realized something. I'm avoiding. I'm able to realize this because I know myself. I've had several things that I could write about. Things in my life and the dates on the calendar have provided me that. But I haven't. Because I get scared. And I avoid when I get scared. Don't get me wrong, I get lazy, too, but with some things I just get scared.

And I still am.

That's why I'm writing about the calendar. Because the past is sometimes easier to face than the present. Because it's already happened and you can't change it. And facing it takes a different kind of courage than the courage it takes to talk about what's really happening. The things your decisions can still change. True, sometimes the lines get blurred between the two, but right now, in this moment, I have more courage to face this.

Maybe because what I have to say comes with happiness. It's memories. It's good times and the scariness factor in it is only that I don't know what my takeaway will be from it. I don't know if today will be one of those where I find the strength to focus on the good or let the bad grab hold of me for awhile.

The truth is that right now, I'm letting you in to another part of me. A part that I'm still working through. And today will only be a touch because I'm not ready to share it all. No details. Not the ones that really hurt. Today you can have more of the good.

I could start with the memory of a year ago, but it won't be easy to understand without going back almost two. January 9, 2011, I lost a dear friend and one of the loves of my life. He passed away. And that's all I'm going to say about that.

The repercussions of losing someone you love and care about are great. They cut you to the core. They sting and burn and tear and rip at you body, mind and soul. It takes a long time to face them and I don't think you're ever fully healed. But I'm not ready to go into that. I wanna talk about the good memories. Even if you have to sift through a little of the bad to get there.

A week in November, one year ago that stretched from a Wednesday to a Saturday were hard for me. It started with the 9th.

It was the 10 month anniversary of my friend's death. It was 10 months that day that so many of us had had to go without him. His laughter, his wit. His smile and his hugs. It was a rough one. I remember driving home that night from a part time job I had just crying. I was so upset.

I had spent part of the night and most of the day thinking about something a mutual friend told me after he passed away. She said that she knew he loved me because of the way that he looked at me. That she could see it. This was the single best and worst thing someone could have told me. I knew he loved me. He told me all the time. We had a friendship and conversation that came easy. I felt happy when I was around him. But to be told that he loved me with a look? It built me up and broke me down in one fell swoop. And then it did it again and again in a horrible and wonderful loop that I had to force to a stop. And most times I stopped on the good of it. On the fact that his love for me shone through. Because I am the eternal optimist. And deep down, I know that I am made of stronger stuff than despair. But sometimes, you just find yourself in a bad place. Like that night.

I was driving home in the dark, and I remember thinking, "What am I supposed to do?", "How do you go on when you lose someone who loved you with a look?" And then there was proof to a sneaking suspicion I had that God let my friend control my ipod. Because the thing was hooked up to my radio, and on shuffle, and then it started playing "My Heart Will Go On" by Celine Dion. And I laughed. It was one of those grateful, breathless, incredulous half-laughs. Where you laugh almost in spite of yourself.

Because my friend is the type of person that would do that for me. He would never want me to be where I was. He would never want me to hurt like that. He would want to remind me that he was in a better place and that I would be okay. And he would do it in a way that made me laugh. With an absolutely cheesy song that we both could appreciate.

And somehow that night, in between Toy Story on the tv with two wonderful roommates when I got home, a text conversation with a friend that is a true rock even 24-hours away, and a song that was heaven-sent, I made it through the first of that week's trials.

The next night I faced a second demon. My friend Maria came into town. She is not the demon. Truth is she is an angel. But she came into town and she wanted to go out. We were going to have a double freshman year roommate night. She was mine, and my friend/current roommate Geese was going to bring her's, mutual friend and awesome person, Kelli. Unfortunately, Kelli was off being an adult, and in New York interviewing for a job, so she couldn't come, but the three of us decided to make a go of it anyway. The only thing was that Maria wanted to go to The Hall.

I hadn't been there since October 21, 2010. OAK officers decided to have a night out. We were gonna go dancing and bond. But through a series of events, it somehow became only half of us. My friend was one of them. (I'm not ready to share his name, I'm sorry. I don't know why, but I can't do it right now.) Well, I remember the feeling in my stomach upon showing up. It was a little out of whack. I hate showing up to places on my own, and I hadn't been able to get a hold of anyone about details of where exactly to meet up. When I finally did reach someone, he came to find me. It was a double blessing. I was relieved to be found and happy to see him.

I remember we were still trying to get some of the other officers to join us, so I had my phone out. I remember him urging me to do what I could to make them get there. And I remember him almost immediately afterwards telling me to put up my phone and dance. Moments like that were his only flaws. The silly, unthinking, laughable and forgivable ones. I was slightly annoyed because it's not like I was attached to my phone and I was only doing what he asked, but then I forgot about it. Because you can't stay annoyed with someone like him. And it was much more fun to dance.

The Hall used to play a good mix of country and contemporary music, but mainly country because after all, this is Aggieland we're talking about folks. This is Texas, y'all. And you don't want to anger the natives because that would be a bad choice. But the contemporary dance music was a good break in between couple dancing and we enjoyed it. And I enjoyed watching him dance. There was a point when Enrique Iglesias' "I Like It" came on and I swear people stopped just to see him white-boy break it down on the floor. And I laughed. And I adapted some of his dance moves as mine for whenever I hear that song.

And I remember dancing with him. Two-stepping around the room as he tried with all his heart to remember how to "thread-the-needle", stopping us in the middle of the dance floor in the way of everyone else and eventually pulling me off to the side so he could try it again because he "had just done it" and then needing to go find Lauren to show him again. I remember when he dipped me and I freaked a little only to have him remind me to trust him because he was not gonna drop me. It was fun being there that night.

Afterwards we went to Whataburger - home of the drunken food that none of us were actually consuming because we were drunk. He and I didn't drink and the other two we were with don't get drunk. We just happen to like Whataburger. Again, Texas, y'all. There were fun times had there, too, but I won't go into detail.

The thing is that it was a wonderful night. It was a lot of fun, and I was holding it in my memory as that. The Hall had become that night for me. And to be asked to go again scared me a little bit. But we did it.

We went to The Hall. And though it wasn't the same kind of night I had with him, it was still good. We danced. We wobbled. I held it together. And then we left for Northgate (the main CS bar scene) and laughed at ourselves for striking out at almost every typically reliable dance place. Daisy Dukes was having a bikini contest. No, thanks. Martini Street turned The Drink turned some-name-I-can't-even-remember was no longer a dance place. And a bunch of the little clubs along College Main were just not happening that night. But Maria scared some guys away in Spanish, and then we laughed at ourselves again for running to our car in the cold as that was the price for our awesomely sketchy parking job that saved us from having to pay. And I made it through the second test.

But I think now I have to stop before I write about the third thing. Because I need to. I know I once promised to be honest here. And I will be, and I am, but you gotta give me time. I'll be honest bit by bit. I'm still avoiding, but I've given you the start of a big piece of me. I hope that's enough right now.

A Birthday Blog


Happy Birthday, to you!
Happy Birthday, to you!
Happy Birthday, beautiful Aggie ring!!
Happy Birthday, to you!

Two years ago today, I received this beautiful reminder of what it really means to be a good Aggie. It is a testament to tradition and encouragement to strive to be a better person. This ring is a symbol of so many of the things that a good Ag should stand for.

"From the outside looking in, you can't understand it. From the inside looking out, you can't explain it."

Friday, November 9, 2012

Flashback Friday! ...Funday!...Ferrets? [insert sensible alliteration here]

I'm gonna try something new. I am instating something called "Flashback Friday."

I know. It's already sounding crazy awesome! Calm down, and grab that inhaler if you're asthmatic, because there's more than just a title with alliteration. (Though that could easily be enough.)

This will be a very special Friday Funday treat for all my lovely imaginary readers, because you've just been so darn good about reading and pretending to be interested in my stories! And also because I happen to believe in positive reinforcement.

I believe in positive reinforcement because I'm afraid negative reinforcement would be something along the lines of: "Every time you don't take the time to visit my blog, a puppy gets it!", and I could never go through with a promise like that unless "it" was something like a brand new chew toy, or a bone, or a stylish new collar. With diamonds. And little jingle bells. Maybe.

I'm actually a total animal pushover. They can sense it. Dogs just know that I'm not going to discipline them, and that's why they like me. I think my aura translates into doggy with messages that say things like:

"Yes, jump on me, please!"
"If we go outside, I will let you control the leash!"
"Yeah, you can eat with me at the table. The more the merrier, and sharing is caring!"
"Oh, is that surgical cone being a bother? Here, let me get that off for you."
"Yeah, sure you can go outside unsupervised. Who cares if you've been an apartment dog all your life, you need adventure!"

Makes dogs love me. Makes my friends who own dogs shake their heads and sigh. And also very rarely allow me to dog sit.

Along those lines, someone once told me that I was the kind of girl who would free all the lobsters from the lobster tank.

It was a pretty accurate prediction.

Honestly, I might.

But if you ever hear about that happening and you think you're gonna be some kind of hero by trying to turn me in, I was TOTALLY kidding. Geeze, learn to take a joke. But if that story doesn't work, I just may have to rethink my stance on negative reinforcement. Only it won't be with a puppy.

Think about it.

Am I understood?


So, let's get to it! I will be posting some of the random thoughts that come in to my head that could probably never be connected to anything else. These are things that have been triggered by small everyday occurrences and usually zoom in and out of my brain in a matter of seconds. Some have been written down. Some were sent as text messages to confused friends. But they're all old and in need of new life. They will find it in Blogland. Or maybe this is Blogville. Blogtown. The City of Blog!

Well, you get it, it's not too hard a concept to grasp.

No? Still struggling? No worries. You'll get the hang of it

Think of it as a field trip into my brain.

Please keep your hands and feet inside the vehicle at all times.

And yes, there will be a quiz at the end.

A la Ms. Frizzle, "Here we go!":

When seeking charitable donations, people need to clarify that you should give to disaster relief. Because Patti Stanger totally just tweeted that we should “Please give to Hurricane Sandy!” When you say that I get a picture of some really weird and twisted sacrifice/offering wherein we leave gifts and food and quite possibly a virgin tied to some sort of pedestal on a cliff somewhere for a giant wave to envelop. “It is done. We have appeased the hurricane gods. All is well now.” Yeah…that ain’t gonna work.

I realized that whenever I say, or even think, “I hate [insert whatever here]”, it is almost always followed up with “I hate that rabbit” a la Yosemite Sam. Sometimes I just hear it in my head, other times I say it out loud.

Have you ever tried saying “yes” while shaking your head “no”? Or saying “no” while nodding “yes”? It feels weird. It may be a kind of “rub your stomach while patting your head” thing. Not impossible or necessarily difficult, but kind of weird.

I just watched an elderly woman riding down the street in her electric wheelchair. What if the person I saw doing that was my grandpa? What would I do? What's the right thing to do? Do I just kind of smile and wave? Honk the horn? Challenge him to a race? Maybe I'm supposed to call my grandma and get him home. After our race.

There’s some joke that has the punchline “Pati O’ Furniture”, but I can’t for the life of me remember the joke. But that sounds like a play on an Irish name. Do I have racist jokes in my head? Maybe I can’t remember because the good in my brain is trying to block it out. Good job, brain! But who the heck was telling me these jokes?!

I just whitefied a man. Yeah, it’s a real thing. My brain turned the name “Perez” into “Parker” with absolutely no suggestion at all. Awesome.

See what I mean? Totally random. And they have nothing to do with anything. They're just thoughts I've had. And now we're done. (Yes, I can be as anti-climactic as I want in the closing, it's my blog.)

Okay, bye bye, now. Buh-bye! Bye-bye!

P.S. I lied about the quiz. This time. But I reserve the right to quiz as I please. It's in the bylaws. And now you know to be prepared.