What I learned.

I never even once thought of the people I’d meet on this trip. I was like, “I’m a solo traveler within a group; everyone is going to be doing their own things.” It didn’t even occur to me that I might meet people and even more so, meet people that I could grow to adore in such a short time.

Just writing that makes my eyes swell up with tears. The people I met this week were just as incredible as Iceland is. I focused my writings a lot on the trip itself but haven’t included much about the people that I’ve met along the way; mostly for their privacy. I have some feel-good stories and many moments in my journal that I’ll keep for myself to remember them by and cherish forever. I don’t know if any of us will ever cross paths again in this life, but I hope we do. It makes my heart so warm knowing there are people in the world that have the same wanderlust spirit and taste for adventure that I do because it’s easy to forget that when surrounded by people with different desires.

G (Gunner, our tour guide) was absolutely incredible. She is so proud of her heritage and of her country. She’s kind and welcomes you warmly and she’s so consistent. She’s not “on” and you can’t see through her because she is 100% genuinely authentically incredible. There was an elderly couple on our trip that had been all over the world; 100+ countries in their time together. The last time they’d been to Iceland was 1966. My mom was one! While some of their travels over the years was for work; a lot of it was for adventure and pleasure, too. They said that our guide was one of the top 5 EVER. In the 50+ years of traveling, Gunner Rosdottir is in their top 5. Talk about a compliment and it doesn’t even do her near as much justice as she deserves.


Guys, I’m so proud of myself. Like, in the best possible way. I can’t even think about it without crying and all of these feels are the most wonderful kind.

I noticed on face book that people are posting what they looked like at the beginning of the decade and at the end; most of them glow-ups but honestly that’s only due to fashion. I reflected on this on my last jaunt of a flight home. Physically, I’m much heavier now than I was at the beginning of this decade; is that a glow-down? I’m sure I’ve learned how to do my makeup a bit better and I’ve hopefully upgraded my fashion game but so much more has changed internally for the better rather than externally.

My life is split up into a handful of segments and I don’t know if that’s normal or not. A decade ago, I was in the early years of what would become a rocky and tumultuous relationship. I was more insecure than I’d ever been in my life and thought that by loving someone harder, I could fix them. Seven years ago, I was forced to leave that relationship because my mom and brother moved me out in the middle of the night due to an explosive conversation they heard when I secretly dialed my moms number. That didn’t last. He was broken and I was the only one that could salvage what life he had left in him. Or so I thought.

He didn’t share the same sense of adventure that I had. So, five years ago, I took the first step into not waiting around anymore for my life to begin. I started traveling with my mom. I feel like my first trip with my mom, through reflection, was my first real step into gaining Independence from an abusive situation. It took me another three years before I finally left that broken relationship.

Two years ago, almost to the day, I left the man that I’d loved with every ounce of my being for nearly a decade; for my entire adult life. I don’t know if i’ll ever be able to love someone the way I did him ever again. I know I’m capable of love; I’m a lover by nature but he took a piece of me that I’ll never be able to give someone again. A love that was fueled by pain. A love that I’m not willing to go through or forfeit to anyone ever again. I want a love that will move mountains, not dig graves.

That same two years ago, I was so unbelievable lost and broken in the truest sense. I came to realize that I wasn’t a person. My entire being existed to make his life better. I didn’t have a sense of self because it died when I left. I wish I could have told that girl then what I’d be doing now. She never would have dreamed of visiting Ireland and Scotland in 2018. She never would have dared go on a solo trip to the North Shore in her home-state. She didn’t think she’d ever get to see the Grand Canyon and she never ever, in a millions years, would have guessed that she’d travel to Iceland alone. I wish I would have told that girl that she’ll get through the pain and immerse the cocoon of heartbreak stronger and more powerful than she could have ever dreamt. I’m so proud of the woman I’ve become. I’ve always been strong but I can’t get over just how strong I am. How I can do this life and do it well, all on my own.

I know that I frequently reference this period of my life; this relationship.. And while I’m not defined by it now, it did define my life and who I was in it for a third of my life. So, I think it’s okay to refer back to it because it will always be there and it’ll always be a stepping stone of chapters in my long life of book. I’m only 30. I have so many more pages to grow from.


Thank you, dear readers, for coming on this journey with me. I’ll leave you with a quote by an Icelandic Nobel Peace Prize winner. Our tour guide recited it to us on one of our magical days traveling through the land of fire and ice:

“Where the glacier meets the sky, the land ceases to be earthly, and the earth becomes one with the heavens; no sorrows live there anymore, and therefore joy is not necessary; beauty alone reigns there, beyond all demands.” – Halldór Laxness

CWA #1

Awhile ago, I announced that my mom had given me a book called “642 Things To Write About.” I had intended to start this earlier but nows a better time than never right? As mentioned in that post, you’ll know it’s a creative writing peace based on the title. I plan on just opening up the book and choosing the first topic I see. Some will be fiction some will be non, depending on the topic I suppose. Here we go…

Who people think you are, compared to who you know you are.

Wow. Jumping right in I guess. This is awfully tricky because it really depends on who the person in question is. People judge a book by its cover in all different forms. I could look at the cover of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” and think it’s going to be a phenomenal book while my 70-something year old grandma could look at it and see a bad illustration of the greatest book series of her granddaughters generation.

A judgement that has stuck with me for a very long time is something my 10th grade best friend said to me. I enrolled in the Newfolden school district mid-9th grade year. I was quiet. I always am when I’m somewhere new, I know that for sure. It took me some time to warm up to the 25 or so people in my grade. Fast forward a good year or so, I became really close with a group in my class. Well, as close as you can be. See, being the new kid gives you some kind of exotic sense of “who is she?” But your face doesn’t pop up when childhood memories are reminisced or last years festivities discussed. They don’t know your deepest darkest secrets or who your first kiss was. They don’t always include you and when it comes down to basic instincts, they never fully trust you.

Regardless of all this, looking back they were some of the best people I had ever known. After a year or so of becoming friends and comfortable sharing my boring 16-year-old life with, my bestest friend at the time told me something I’ll never forget: “When you first came to this school, I thought you were a bitch.”

Nice, huh?

We went on to discuss her statement. It was nothing I said or did. I just looked like I’d probably be a bitch. It wasn’t a look I gave her (not knowing her) or the people I talked to the first day. It was just a “feeling” she had. I’ve always wondered what people thought about me, I think everyone does. But since that moment, I really think that I became more aware of that nagging wonder.

I’ve had about four best friends in my life. In chronological order: Kristi, Sam, Adam, and Chris. Kristi popped back in when we were in college. I moved from Roseau so we were disconnected and now, we’re disconnected because of well…life. But I still consider her one of my dearest friends. Even with our lives so different and going years without talking.

The other three still hold a huge piece of my heart too. Sam was my first and longest friend when I moved. We shared some of the literal best times of my life together. Nothing and no one could ever replace a friendship like we had. It was hard to “stay friends” when she left junior year and I decided to pursue college.

Then there was Adam. Adam pulled me out of my shell. He was wild and open. He would sing like no one was watching and not try to clean up because someone was coming over. He was confident and my confidant. We did everything together.

And same goes for Chris. Chris, my brother, and I were connected at the hip for some time but like every friendship, things change.

I wish I could have been one of those people who have had a best friend since kindergarten. Even as adults, be close. Meet up, go to each others bachelorette parties, travel together. All that jazz. But you know what? If that were the case, I might not have met the four that I did have.

Clearly, I’ve gotten off topic here. What I guess I’m trying to say is I have no idea who people think I am. And I have no idea how people decided they wanted to be my friends along the way. The only insight I’ve ever gotten was that I’m probably a bitch even though I don’t think I am.

I think that people think I’m reserved. That I’m quiet. I think that people think I’m a know it all or stuck up. I think people think that I think I’m better than them. I think people think I’m a fat slob. I think people don’t trust me or feel uneasy around me. I think people think I’m stupid for staying with Channing when I should have left.

I don’t think that anyone envy’s my life as I do theirs.

Who am I really? At 25 years old, I should know who I am, shouldn’t I? I should have lived and made more mistakes than I have. I should have traveled and gotten my bachelors and volunteered at a soup kitchen and partied harder and loved deeper. I should have experimented and dated more guys. I’m sure that’s what the “wondering me” would say. But it’s not about her. It’s about the “actual” me.

Who am I really? I’m a 25-year-old woman trying to figure my life out. I’m a bitch but I’m only a bitch to people who actually deserve bitchiness. I love hard and fall even harder. I’m a thinker. I’m an observer. I stumble over my words because I don’t know what I want to say but I know how to write it. If you mean the world to me, I’ll put your needs ahead of mine. Always. I’m a bad tipper because I expect excellent service. I lack empathy. I wish I had access to that deep socket in my brain to empathize with homeless people or women who regret last nights hook-ups but I don’t. I love children and want to be a mother. I love to write but feel that it’ll never get me anywhere. I’m quiet in settings I’m not comfortable in. I don’t trust very many people but I expect people to trust me. I strive to be someone who my brothers look up to but I don’t think I’ve done a very good job of that. I know I’m a good person and that I care too much. I know that I am smart but I know I’m not the smartest. I believe in third, fourth, and fifth chances. I know that my family and boyfriend are the most important things in my life. I know that I focus to much on wishing my life had been different instead of appreciating the life I have. I know I’m fat and it makes me hate myself. Like really, really hate myself. I know that my size and the way I look deter me from being the person I am inside. It prevents me from being the outgoing girl I once was. It puts a road block directly in front of me. I don’t go out and meet people because I’m bigger than a mini-cooper.

I know a lot about myself but I don’t always know who I am. I’m not who I think I am because of what I am. I don’t know if I’ll ever really know who I am. Who are you?

Series Finale.

I just wanted to take a quick second to say thank you to anyone and everyone that checked out my blog over the last few weeks since I began my “12 Days of Christmas” series. Before the series began, I was averaging a whopping 3 views per post thanks to the very few devoted readers I have. Since then, my average has octupled! That’s 8 times as many views as normal. My blog peaked at 56 views in one day on 12/22! So thank you to everyone that took time out of your scrolling to click on my posts!

My stats will likely go down again since I won’t be posting to FB after this series. I don’t usually post my personal blog because I’ve been bitten twice too many times by the sharks of the social media world. I enjoy writing on many different levels. Sometimes I like to stick to a topic and sometimes I like to bitch and moan about life. In the past, I probably was more personal than some were comfortable with involving certain aspects of my life. That is the primary reason I stopped posting to Facebook and sharing my voice with the people I knew because people really can be assholes, myself included.

That, however, is besides the point. This Christmas season, no matter how hard I tried, didn’t feel like Christmas. And per my unofficial poll, it was a mutual feeling throughout the small population of people I know. I attribute it to a few different things:

  • 1. The season was short. Thanksgiving was late in the month of November so Christmas really only had 3-4 weeks to happen and become everything we dream of.
  • 2. The weather. It’s been awfully mild this year. The last few years have actually been quite warm but this year we had little to no snow..anywhere.
  • And 3. This one is more personal but it just didn’t feel like Christmas at home. We didn’t put everything up this year because we moved into our apartment in November and we didn’t host my families celebration either. So it kind of felt..bleh.

I do have to say though, because of my self-mandated writing assignment, I began to think about the Christmas season outside of the box. Instead of focussing on hurrying up and buying everyone the best gifts which isn’t what Christmas is supposed to be about; I tried my best to appreciate the finer things that this holiday season has to offer. My mom being selfless and donating goods to the homeless shelter, Channing and I quietly watching a wintertime parade. Traveling to see family and seeing our nieces and nephews. It was a very nice but short holiday season.

Of course, as always, I wish I could have done more. I wish time and finances had allowed us to go to Jayde’s Christmas choir concert and to bring Duane to the Holiday Train in Thief River. I wish I could have spent some real quality time with both of my brothers and watch more Christmas-y shows. I wish we could have done a little more and gave to the poor. The great thing about all of this is that life isn’t over. There is still time to do and to give. To visit and to see. There’s more time than we even know what to do with so as long as it’s not wasted, the “I wishes” will become “I haves.”

I hope that you took time this Christmas season to enjoy it instead of stress over it. I hope that you received and gave everything that you had planned on including love, good fortune, and happiness.

As previously mentioned, I probably won’t be posting my personal blog to Facebook again for awhile unless I feel that I have a really good story or something to share simply because I don’t want to crowd peoples Facebook feeds. Feel free to comment, like, and share all you want. I really enjoy hearing your feedback. Stay tuned for an even better year then all the years so far! And thank you, again.

1st Day Of Christmas: Oh, Christmas Tree

IMG_7985Beginning the 12 days of Christmas I only found it fitting that I’d introduce you to my Christmas tree. For the past five years I’ve accumulated quite an assortment of blue and silver Christmas decor but once Christmas clearance was in full swing last December, I decided to change it up and opted for a more “traditional” color scheme. You probably can’t really tell by the photo but I chose reds, golds, and greens – Christmas colors of course.

Unfortunately, I haven’t had much Christmas spirit yet this year. Usually our apartment is dolled up floor to ceiling; kitchen to bathroom in Christmas but not this year. So far we’ve only managed to put up the tree, a couple decorations, and a string of lights.

I think part of it has to do with the struggle we had to move and get settled into a new city so quickly. Three months ago we hadn’t even been planning to move and here we are. Settled in (kind of) two hours away, new jobs, new people, new life. I really do have to give Channing a pat on the back though…we’ve been through a lot of unmentionable shit (for lack of a better word) over the years but boy that man will do anything for me. We could have very easily stayed in Grand Forks. We both had great paying jobs, enjoyed the people we knew, had a comfortable living situation but it wasn’t our “dream.” We didn’t see ourselves planting our tree there.

It was definitely a financial risk moving to Bemidji for both of us but we’re bound and determined to rise above it in order to pursue our dreams. And before you laugh at that last sentence – Bemidji wasn’t our dream either. We don’t know exactly where we want to grow old at but we knew for sure, above anything, that it wasn’t Grand Forks.

If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. ~Maya Angelou

And we did.

Another part of feeling out of the Christmas spirit this holiday season is knowing that not a soul will be coming to visit us through the holidays. We won’t be hosting Christmas this year which I’ve come to terms with but the way that certain things have been gone about really has given me a bitter taste in my mouth. That’s my problem though – there’s a point when we all need to be the bigger person and watch how the acorns fall rather then picking them off ourselves.

To help me fully get into the holiday spirit this year, I’ve decided to do this “12 Days Of Christmas” blog series. I believe I explained it a bit more in my previous post but that’s day one! I’d love to see your Christmas tree pictures and hear how you’ve gotten into the Christmas-y mood this year!

A New Series.

There is so much that I want to write about about and at the very same time there’s nothing to say. I’m a thinker. My gears are constantly turning. It’s like my brain is shape-shifting in ways that I don’t even know how to explain.

Oh, were the days when you could walk around with a hand held recorder to record all your thoughts. I mean, we still have it sure – it’s called a phone. In order to record anything you have to swipe to unlock, swipe to find the app, wait for your phone OR the app to stall and then load…do I need to continue or do you get the point?

My newest thought was to do a “12 Days of Christmas” series on my blog. When I looked that up, I came across some new information. The “12 Days of Christmas” actually starts on Christmas Day and runs through January 5th. Am I the only one to not have known that? My entire life I was under the assumption that December 25th was the last day, day twelve.

Sticking to my original assumption though, I’m doing it my way. Day 1 will be December 14th because that only makes sense – the 12 days leading up to Christmas. Obviously.

I have a few reasons for pursuing this. The first being that I’ve been so busy trying to manage my second blog that this one has kind of taken an undeserved hit. In a perfect situation, I’d obviously have only one blog. One central location for readers to find me. But that’s not the case. I have so much invested into this blog that I don’t want to let it go and I won’t be posting any of my random, no subject rants (like this one) on there anyways.

I have (well had) a few plans for this blog to begin with because I haven’t been making a very good effort to write. Writers block doesn’t seem to be a problem..Netflix does. Orange Is The New Black anyone? Talk about an addiction. I finished it in less then a week and now I’m on to my next fix: House of Cards.

Damnit, Netflix.

So stay tuned everyone. The self-required “12 Days of Christmas” series begins on December 14th.

A Working Title II.

Wow! To say “it’s been awhile” is a bit of an understatement. But I come to you with fabulous news! As you know (or you should know) I recently moved to a new city and started a new job.

I also received approval to start a Featured Staff Blog at the local newspaper that I’m working for. This is exciting news for me! I love to write and I would love it if my voice could reach more than the small handful I’ve received with this blog and my previous blog. But please, don’t fret. I won’t be abandoning this one.

This blog is going to remain the same. It will include my random ramblings, critiques on life in general and everything in between. My new blog, creatively dubbed “A Working Title II” will be a little more straight forward and to the point. I won’t be going in deep on the personal front or posting anything borderline offensive. It’ll be clean cut I guess some would say and I’m okay with that. It’s a foot into the right direction for me.

Since I didn’t go to school for journalism or actually anything even close to that; I feel that any opportunity I have to get my voice out there is an opportunity to take. I’ve posted a few times on my new blog and I plan to post the link for those posts periodically on this one so that you always have access to them.

I hope that you continue to see what’s going on in the wonderful (kind of boring) world of Ori as well as start a new trek to my new blog! If you have any questions or would like to you know…publish me – my contact information is updated on the appropriate page.

To visit my new blog; A Working Title II, click here.

As always, enjoy!

Week Hashtag Five.

My blog has been pretty bare lately. Busy I guess. No really, I’ve been busy up to my ears. I’m coming to an end of the last Monday at my current job. Four days to go. Most people don’t give a five week notice. But I did. Partially my choice, partially not. Anyways…week five is officially here. Day one is officially done. Bleh.

I’ve come out pretty good on those Facebook Buy & Sell pages over the last couple weeks. If I hadn’t already spent what I made last week, I’d have come to my PR Buy & Sell total: $110. Not too hashtag bad if you ask me. I thought I’d try this new thing; replace curse words with the word hashtag. I’m wondering if people will take me seriously or think I’m a hashtag genius.

I mean, I come from a crop of digital inventors. My first boyfriend broke up with me via MSN. Emoji’s were cool before Apple “thought” them up. My generation created chat rooms and MySpace was our baby. Now we speak in hashtags. And by the way, if you haven’t come across at least one millennial who has used hashtags in open dialog than you might want to buy that particular millennial a computer, smart phone, and some good ol’ fashioned non-dial up internet.

On with the show. Did you know that if you rent a brand spanking new, only four other people live in the building, apartment…figuring out hashtag internet is an exhausting 1 hour and 51 minute headache on the phone? Now if I could just lug around the corded telephone with a football fields length worth of cord around the house with me, it wouldn’t be a big deal. But to crank my neck or listen to the God-awful “please hold” music on speaker for that long? Where did my night go?

63f15aada3cae11993bcae4c230c561cNot to mention, I’m living like a poor kid right out of high school trying to cut it on a punctured blow up mattress. I guess the one thing I have going for me is that I’ve thrown housework out the window for the next four days right? This is the life. Week five.

Have you seen the MTV hit show Awkward? If you haven’t, you should. It’s classic bad acting, cliche, high school drama rolled into a thrilling must-see 30 minute TV show. I watch it every week. It’s one of my many television heroines. Anyways..last week Tamara and Jenna were fighting (they’re best friends and apparently best friends fight. Who would have known.) Tamara is a very high strung, super organized, always knows what’s going on redhead. And Jenna, she’s a super chill, go with the flow, wrong place wrong time kind of girl.

51WAhDYHNcL._SX258_BO1,204,203,200_Closing in on the end of their little fight, Tamara expressed how she would just die to be as chill and relaxed as Jenna is. To just go with it, take life as it is. That’s how I wish I could be. Maybe. My mind is always moving, even when I’m relaxing, I’m constantly thinking. I’ve never been that girl but I’ve always been that girl.

Once I get fully settled into my new place I have an updated game plan for my blog. Some of it will be the same blabbering on about nothing and some will be creative writing assignments courtesy of an early birthday present my mom (and blog reader) gave to me. Any of the 642 things to write about or variation of such will be labeled CWA #1 and so on. Any normal post will stay the same.

I hope you enjoy! Here’s to week five, day two.

She Got Her Wings.

So much can happen in one year. Some enter this world and some exit. Families are formed and families are torn apart. People are forgiven and people are damaged. Some die and some are born. We travel and we get snowed in. We fall and sometimes we get back up. We change jobs, we move to new cities, and sometimes..we sit still. Sometimes life happens so quickly and days turn into weeks that turn into months that turn into years. Before you know it, you can’t even remember the last conversation you had with someone because of life.

And at the very exact same time that “life” is happening, it doesn’t. Life isn’t easy, I don’t think it was designed to be easy. Everyone will hit a rough patch or twenty. Some will suffer throughout their childhood. Some as young adults. Some won’t even suffer until they’ve hit the peak mid-life crisis stage of life. But it happens to the best of us.

Truly..to the best of us.

One year ago today, an old friend passed away. I call her an old friend not because of our age but because of life. Life got in the way from seeing each other often. Life got in the way who’s who and what’s what. Life got in the way of appreciating the goodness, the memories, the time.

And death? Well, sadly, death brought us back together. We don’t often think about everyone that has made an impact on our lives every single day because there’s still time. There will always be time to run into them at Wal-mart or catch up at class reunions. There will be time, especially when you’re 23.

That’s where I was wrong. This last year I’ve really tried to work on finding out who the hell I am. What I stand for. Who and what I love. I’ve tried to humble myself (it isn’t easy) and I’ve tried to be a more empathetic person (definitely not easy). I’ve tried to improve myself because of one person and that person is Aron.

Now, I wasn’t best friends with her. I didn’t keep in touch like I should have. I didn’t know what she was doing in her day to day life but I knew one thing. Time didn’t change her heart. It may have changed her life but it didn’t change her heart. It wouldn’t have mattered if 2 years had gone by or 20, she still would have come right up to you with a hug and a smile and ask what the hell you’ve been up to.

Man, I wish I could be like her. I wish that I could find the best in people and care as much as she did. I wish that she was still here and I could make a valiant effort to reconnect with her. I wish that her family could squeeze her too tight just one more time. I wish that holes weren’t created in hearts the day she died.

One year ago today, an old friend passed away. So much can happen in one year. Some enter this world and some exit. And some..well they are with us every day. We all miss you, Aron. Keep us on our toes will ya? I hope those wings fit you just right.

I’ve mentioned Aron in a couple posts throughout the last year. I’ve posted them below for Elaine, Melissa, and Austin. Sending the biggest hugs I can muster up your way today.

10/17/2013:
We Shouldn’t Have To Say Goodbye Yet
10/22/2013:
I Want To Be A Better Person
1/8/2014:
Heavy Hearts & Open Arms
4/4/2014:
Does Heaven Have DQ Ice Cream Cake?
8/14/2014:
Genie, You’re Free

Ciao.

IMG_7036This weekend was full of fun. I will try to spare you on all the rambling on details but it was nice to do something out of the norm. Not that my weekends have been “normal” or anything. I am pretty aware of the fact that I live a “dull life” in comparison to many of the people that I interact with on a daily basis. I’ve actually been busier than I’m used to over the last few weeks though. But if you’ve been keeping up with my blog or twitter feed, you already knew that.

We had a nice yet unexpected dinner with my aunt on Friday evening. And we also went to visit my SO’s niece and nephew which was a blast because they are both at such fun ages. I remember growing up and my Uncle Troy seemed to be always present in my younger childhood days. Moments with him were some of my favorite growing up.

We haven’t always had the opportunity to connect with our niece and nephew as often as we’d like to have in the past but are making a great effort to do so as much as we can presently. It’s a good feeling.

Bw-obAeCcAErsTdSaturday was full of JC, shopping, a baby shower for Channing’s sister and some good ol’ quality visiting time with my mom. When days are jam packed with thing after thing after thing, it seems that there are never enough seconds in the day. I loved every bit of the weekend but I wish that I could have spent more time doing each thing because it seems like an hour only last 20 minutes these days.

Oh, and my mom, brother, and I went to get our hair done at my aunts salon in Halstad. (This is a different aunt from my Friday venture.) I wish I had a picture of my moms new do as well because she looks great!

Does time go faster than it should? I began to notice that each day seemed to go a little faster when I was in 4th grade. I don’t know what the particular event was but I know that I was at school and I all of a sudden felt like the day zoomed by. Around that time, I must have become more concussions of the measure of time.

As I’m proofreading this post, it’s kind of silly I guess. To lay out what I did on my weekend. It’s actually kind of boring. I just felt like writing and really don’t have anything specific to write about.

Actually, I do have a couple things to write about but I’m working through how to construct the posts. I have some blurbs of thoughts down but nowhere to go with them. We’ll see what happens. Ciao.

Bullies.

If we can’t teach our children to stick up for themselves than we are going to raise a submissive generation of pity induced robots.

My brother posted a Facebook status about a video that went viral locally. It was of a girl crying and her brother telling the camera that his sister had been being bullied.

I saw it on the news. It was sad to see. I had mixed emotions when it was publicly broadcasted on the 6 o’clock and 10 o’clock news because I ran threw both sides of the story in my head.

For one, I think it is horrible that her mom had the damn balls to film her daughter balling her eyes out from being bullied and then publicly posted it. I’ve said it a million times, I’m not a mom but that doesn’t exclude me from having a very just opinion about something because one day I will be a mom and I’ll still have an opinion and still be entitled to it. I felt like I had to clarify for the “but you’re not a mom so you can’t have an opinion” speech.

Anyways, I’m sure that the mothers intentions were to spread awareness that bullyng is real and in our community. We already know this. In my opinion, video taping your daughter clearly upset and Facebooking the world is so far from comforting; it’s ridiculous. That alone isn’t only being a bully yourself but it’s going to encourage people to poke more fun. Kids are going to watch the news with their parents and see the video. Then they will bully the poor kid even more for being a cry baby and a tattle tale. Do you not think it’d be absolutely humiliating to see yourself clearly distraught on television? A round of applause for the “Inconsiderate Mother Of The Year” award everyone.

Bullying does happen. I’ve been the victim of it for many different things over many many years. From 1st grade to 5th. As a pre-teen and a post-driver. And even as a college student and full grown working adult. It’s everywhere. It’s unavoidable in the disgusting, soul grabbing world we live in. It sucks and it hurts but stand up and fight for your damn self.

Kids are assholes but so are the grown ups. If we can’t teach our children to stick up for themselves than we are going to raise a submissive generation of pity induced robots. And I’m not saying that bullies should get away with being bullies. They shouldn’t.

The adults around should address the issue not only in general but when they witness bullying. They should be punished just as if they were late to class or caught smoking in the bathroom. If it is off school grounds, there are still opportunities to educate the bullies. Teach them about karma or even the golden rule. Teach them to be kind.

My brother would tell you to teach them to fight. Throw punches. Show them you’re tough. I get it. Heck, if my kid were being bullied; I’d want to punch the bully square in the face too but I don’t want to raise my kids knowing that violence is okay.

I want them to be physically strong but not to use it as a means to end bullying. I’m sure this is all easier said then done. If I had punched any of my bullies. I really don’t think it would have changed anything. I’d probably have been perceived as the mean kid. Not the bullied kid who took a stand.

Teach your children to stand up for themselves through proving the bully wrong. Teach them to do what they love no matter what anyone says. Teach them to kill with kindness and excel. Fight back with words instead of fists. And don’t fight back with hatred in your voice but with confidence.

If you guide them down the path of being strong and standing up for themselves, they will be fully capable to handle the real world because elementary is just the prologue to life.

So stop sheltering. Stop promoting a passive attitude. Stop treating your children like babies. They are going to be exposed to the world sooner or later, wouldn’t you want them to have as much experience with it as possible?

Another Quiz.

It would be hard to believe that just a few short months ago, the BuzzFeed quizzes that we are all familiar with were barely spoken about in comparison to today. It seems almost overnight our news-feeds went from the usual humdrum of every day life to quiz result after quiz result after quiz result.

The funny thing is, it isn’t even annoying. Well, not to me anyway. It’s always like ‘yes another quiz!’ And if I’d already taken it I’d compare myself to what that person got. Super cool 21st century shit right there. We’ve found out which state we actually belong in (Wisconsin) to which actress would play us in a movie?” (Jennifer Lawrence). I’ve probably taken 15 or more of these over the last month. The great and addicting thing about them is as follows:

1. The Format. They all have the same boxed layout for every question. Simple and easy.

2. Answers Are Relatable. Just about every single question has an answer that will appeal to any single person.

3. The Result. No matter the result you get, you’ll always have a small paragraph explaining who you are and usually it makes sense.

Although there’s a simplicity to the quizzes and we already know the facts about ourselves – it is like we all want a deeper understanding about the one person we know everything about. Ourselves. Take horoscopes for example. We were all born on our designated days. Our sign will never change but so often you see your horoscope blasted everywhere you look. It’s in the newspaper, your favorite magazine, online, it’s everywhere. I’ve known my astrological traits and characteristics before I knew how to add and subtract, yet I yearn to know more. To thrive off of a better understanding.

Why? I don’t know why? Maybe we all just want to have a better understanding of why our lives are working or not working. Why we view the glass as half empty when we live perfectly full lives. Maybe we want to have the reassurance that we are old souls and that our temper is derived from something deeper than the surface.

igotab

I recently took another BuzzFeed quiz. The latest question: “What Grade Are You Getting In Life?” And would you believe that I got a B-?! A “below average” grade? I believe it. I was actually expecting a “C” based off of the answers I gave.

I live a good life, I know that I am blessed. I mean I have an amazing family and support system. I’m in a happy and loving relationship. I have an okay paying job. Any debt that I have is manageable I guess. So why did I doubt myself when scrolling through the quiz? Well, although I’m content with my current situation, I am disappointed in my life path.

As I’ve mentioned on many occasions, I’m not where I had dreamt I’d be at this point in my life and apparently I haven’t accepted that force of nature yet. I also don’t know what I want to be when I grow up. I’d love to go back to college not only to soak in knowledge but to better my career but where will it lead me? My deepest passions are photography and writing. Having an excuse and saying “but that won’t get me anywhere” is chalked up to a bunch of bullshit. Will 2-4 years of $20,000 a year schooling realistically pay off? I don’t know. But will it make me feel more fulfilled? Probably.

I don’t want to live a poverty stricken life. I want my future children to live good rounded lives. Be able to do things and go places without having to worry if mom and dad can afford it. I want to own a home. Not a fixer upper, dump of a place but an actual home. A beautifully decorated by me masterpiece.

I want to be successful, be happy, and travel but I’m so far from that it’s ridiculous. I’ve changed my “current situation” so many times since I graduated high school so I know that it can be done but how can it be done if you don’t know where to start or what to do? So if anyone is looking for a blogging, picture taking, good with numbers, multi-tasking, organized, traveling wanna-be, museum loving, hardworking woman…hit me up. I’m all yours!

And it’s not just a career or school path in life that’s preventing me from turning my B- into an A+. I just don’t know where I want to be. I know that I want to go abroad for more than just a 10 day vacation. I know that I want to live in a huge city but I also want to settle down in the country. I know that I want to own an art studio to exhibit mine and other artists work. I know that I want to get healthy and be more social. I know what I want, we all do. How are we supposed to take what we want, balance it with what we have, and somehow be completely and wholeheartedly happy with the result? It’s not possible, is it?

What grade would you give yourself in life? Click here to find out what BuzzFeed gives you! Do you think that we’re harder on ourselves than we should be or does that make us pursue things at a greater level of determination?

Sell The Sizzle, Not The Steak.

Lately I’ve been feeling conflicted when it comes to my blog and the guts of it. I find myself carefully constructing these posts only to either draft 50% of them or choose who I publicly share it with out of the fear of who is reading it. Quite frankly, I don’t care who reads it. I like the feedback whether positive or negative. I want strangers, friends, other bloggers, family, ect to hear what I have to say but than on the other side of equal balance and importance are my coworkers.

Although we’re all entitled to an opinion and I am very stubborn in that way of thinking; I don’t want to offend the wrong person. This, meaning someone I work with. I don’t want something that I say or believe to be taken the wrong way or even simply be wrong in their eyes and than I pay for it on the professional front even though this is my personal blog. But, given the world we live in; our personal space needs to abide by our professional lives rules and regulations.

I suppose I have a few options:
1. I can make my blog private but than what’s the point? I write because I want to be read.
2. Stop sharing my blog on Facebook. Currently, I will share it here and there but not always. And when I do, I usually share to everyone except specific people. You know what I mean? But that gets so annoying and Facebook is really the only place that I can share it to friends and family.
3. Make my Twitter private, thus eliminating any wandering eyes looking for some kind of twisted revenge.

All are just plain ol’ first world problematic pains in my butt. I haven’t decided yet what to do but what I know for sure is that I want to write whatever, however, and whenever I want without the fear of it interfering with my professional life. Now, I really haven’t done or said anything that would cause this kind of uproar but that’s what I’m trying to prevent because I know perfectly good, hardworking people that have gotten fired or been prevented from getting jobs due to something or another on social media. Where does that leave the blogger in all if us?

I guess the people that really make a dinosaurs footprint in the history of our world are the ones who don’t give a shit. That just roll with the punches, march to the beat of their own drum, ect. Thinking about this, the people that I look up to most are daring. They’ve been knocked down, rejected, and thrown shit-filled curve balls but they are the ones I admire.

So here’s to taking my own stand, pushing through the hurdles, proving people wrong and myself right. Sell the sizzle not the steak right?

Take It Or Leave It.

IMG_2462

I’ve reverted back to “A Working Title.” Very temporarily named “More Than A Freckle-Faced, Four-Eyed, Red-Headed Little Girl,” I realized that wasn’t what I wanted to put forward into the world. At the time, I think I just wanted to be seen and heard at a more real tense in life.

For so long, most of the people in my life have seen me as the ginger girl in high school, the shy co-worker, or the first-born daughter, grandchild, and niece. I know that I’m more than that, but if people can’t get past the clouded memories of a child that never grew up than I suppose it’s their own loss. Right?

I’m a 24-year old woman. I’m a writer. I have opinions and a love for photography. I’m shy and outgoing simultaneously. My thoughts run so deep that sometimes I don’t have words for the things I want to say. I love, I speak, and most of all – I have grown up into an independent thinking person. And I’m finally ready to rid the past opinions of myself. My life is a work in progress, thus the name of the blog. Take it or leave it.

Write It Out.

DSCN0781

Since the new year started, I’ve seen a few new blogs pop up on my various social network news feeds. They are all very inspirational. The ironic thing is; although all of us are doing our own thing – we all seem to have a common ground. And that is: expressing ourselves in a way that we haven’t before. Something was missing and that was explanation, interpretation, and most of all our voices in the written form. I don’t know about anyone else but I find it easiest to express myself in any emotion through writing it out. Sure I’m fully capable of declaring my emotions in any which way physically and vocally but actually digging a little deeper and getting my voice heard only happens through writing. The unfortunate thing is that we never really know who is listening to it when presenting it on a public forum like this. I’m sure people all over the world see our open book and pass their own judgements just like I myself do. But the people that we actually want to see and read and understand seem to have no idea that these parts of our lives exist. To each their own I guess, we can’t make anyone do anything.