Thursday, November 28, 2013

An Admission

There are things I am not grateful for.

What I am grateful for is my bed. Always my bed. I'm grateful for this awesome and amazing world and all the beauty in it. I'm grateful for the opportunities I've made to explore some small part of it. I'm grateful for the opportunities I've taken to live in other places and to learn and grow. To discover myself, to become myself, and to love who I am.  I'm grateful for my parents. For my brothers and sisters, and my cutest nephews in the world. And I'm grateful for my people. For a small handful of my best friends. People that I don't have to explain myself to. Two of them here, three in Seattle, one in Iowa, one in Pittsburgh, one in North Carolina, and one in Ethiopia. People who have seen me at my best and at my worst. People who know me sometimes better than I know myself. People that no matter how much time we've spent apart, nothing changes when we get together again. Of the myriad of things I have to be grateful for each day, these are the things I'm grateful for most. And I'm grateful for Stefan. Obvi.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Color Me Wonder

Today I had a fair amount of anxiety over sharing my crayons with my favorite 3 year old nephew.  So, ya know, adulthood.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

White Girl Problems

It began last night. The prep work. My hair had to be washed last night so that it could air dry over night so that I could spend 40 minutes putting it in large curls this morning, which would set for thirty minutes while I did my makeup and got dressed. Then I could let the curls calm to a beachy-curl slash wave while running errands so that by my appointment time my hair was the perfect combo of clean, sleek, effortless, but still chic that is needed to meet someone who holds the future of your precious locks in his hands.  I mean, you can't just show up to an appointment to get your hair done for the first time in a ponytail --the horror! I even went so far as to manicure my eyebrows and shave my legs for the occasion --although the latter may have been overkill. In all honesty though, it's a big deal. So I left my house with hair and makeup perfected, ran my errands, then started the long drive to my appointment. Fifteen minutes can seem like forever :) I was more nervous for this than I have been for anything in a LONG time. And let's remember I've recently relocated to a new time zone, started a new job, and traveled out of the country twice in the recent past. Physically nervous --beyond butterflies. Which reminds me. If you're prone to gut-churning nausea-inducing anxiety, you should forego the caramel macchiato for breakfast and go with something of actual substance --less caffeine and sugar.  By the time I arrived at the salon I was honestly terrified, and it took several calming deep breaths to get out of my car.

Getting your hair done by someone new at a new salon is one of the most terrifying things a girl can go through. I almost cried. #firstworldproblems

The Before. Terror. Terrified.

And it was all for naught, of course. It usually is. But my hair is my most prized possession, and sometimes all the research is just wrong. It's only been wrong once for me, and I got over it, but still. Dan was fantastic. I was in good hands. I wondered at first --being the only brunette in the salon, but I am back in Utah now and these are things I'll just have to deal with. The salon was sleek and comfortable, the music was fantastic and just this side of mainstream --my favorite. And when Jason Walker's "Down" came on, I knew it was going to be just fine.  No gossipy idle chit chat --I explained what I liked my hair to do in general and the problems I'd had in the past, handed full control over to my new stylist and spent the next very delightful hour discussing books and travel. And now my head is about two pounds lighter and smells delicious :)

The after. Happy girl. Happy hair day.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


Sometimes I feel guilty ...not guilty... sometimes I feel as though at 31 I should be more of a responsible adult. For instance, maybe put the ipad away, stop watching teen-targeted shows, and go to bed when you have to be up in 6 hours. Then I think, ya know what? I spent last night rapidly transfusing massive amounts of blood products in to a gruesome humpty-dumpty who's tongue was sticking out of the middle of what should have been the base of his throat. So there. I can watch you-tube videos and Vampire Diaries reruns as much as I want. And I'm going to eat a popsicle and chocolate covered raisins for dinner. So there!

To clarify... I could sleep, I just don't want to. It's not the gore that is my daily routine that's keeping me awake, rather I use the routine-ness and mundane nature of the gore to justify some questionable decisions. Yay adulthood :)

Thursday, November 7, 2013

An Ugly Truth

Tonight I came face to face with a very ugly part of my soul. I had an entire post written about the ordeal, then I realized it was much more journal appropriate. You know, as in the secret journal that not even posterity should discover lest future generations realize what a crazy maniacal person you truly are. But the feelings I'm having now, the realizations coming from that experience are so powerful.  I won't recount the entire story, but I will say this: Whatever you find yourself complaining about or feeling bad about WHATEVER it is, take a moment and imagine you telling the complaint to a friend doing purely selfless work with public health in a third world country. Or write it down as though you were writing a letter to such a person. Then hear yourself say it. Hear the gravity of what your saying to this person, and allow yourself to see and imagine what their daily problems consist of. Just let it soak in. It changes your perspective.  And maybe it brings you face to face with the root of the problem that you've been battering for some time. Stark reality is cold.

The grass really is always greener. Don't let yourself immortalize past experiences on a pedestal of the bright and shiny. Don't let yourself discount your present experiences because of dreams of the past or of the way things could be. This is not to say don't dream, don't change, don't become. Quite the opposite. Be where you are. Appreciate each day for what it is, and when that day has gone, appreciate it for what it was --nothing more, nothing less. Dream big, aim higher than the stars, but don't let it put a damper of where you are now. Just realize the beauty of the position you're in to control your own reality, your own experience. Take stock in what matters. What really matters. Don't mourn things you gave up to grow to where you are now. Remember the things you gave up and be grateful that you had them, be grateful for where they have gotten you, but BE where you ARE. Always. Always moving and going forward.

And be easy on yourself. We all have ugly spots on our souls, it's part of this human experience, finding them, accepting them, and cleaning them away. You can hate certain parts of yourself as long as you hate them while staring them in the face. Don't turn away and pretend they don't exist. Don't close yourself off from them determined to feign ignorance. Acknowledge that they exist, feel whatever feelings associate with them and then work like hell to un-blemish the spots. The best lessons often begin with the deepest pain.

And be grateful for friends who when you accidentally show them your most ugly spots, love you anyways. And maybe try to be that friend for other people.