Life Choices at Midnight

I have these rare moments at Midnight where I’m hungry, but nothing sounds appetizing. I stand and stare into the fridge, trying to deduce what will satisfy my body.

I decided to go with a roast beef sandwich. I made one late last night and I thought, can’t wrong with roast beef two nights in a row.

Now I’m not an amazing cook. I rarely cook and I have no patience or natural instincts for cooking. But I cook. I can make you a mean french toast, various forms of eggs and egg in toast, sandwiches, and a few assortments of desserts.

Last night’s roast beef sandwich went very well, so well in fact that was the main choices for attempt number two.

Problem: I left in the middle of toasting my beard. Trying to multitask cooking and watching John Mulaney’s New In Town was a bad idea. Definitely burnt my toast. During toast attempt number two I was scared for a brief moment when I thought we were out of roast beef. I definitely had a cartoon “oh noo!” moment, but think petite redhead in a cartoon saying no or something adorable.

Don’t worry, because the roast beef was hiding under the ham.

I made the sandwich (not as good as last nights) the stem of the avocado ended up in the sandwich somehow. Then I went back into my room to watch reruns of The Walking Dead.

30 minutes into my late night sandwich eating and Netflix watching my brother comes home and walks into my room to ask me why he found my glasses in the fridge.

“huh…I didn’t notice.”

“Sister! How is that possible?! You can’t see without them!”

“Well, all the zombies on The Walking Dead look at same blurry or not.”

The moment you realize maybe it’s time for bed because you’re that exhausted.

Glasses back on I decided to eat a cookie. But I couldn’t open the box and I had to ask my brother to open the box, which prompted more “Sister! you’re a mess!”

Ate the cookie and watched Mike Birbiglia, My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend. Yes, I am moving back and forth between shows on Netflix.

Beware: You May Fall in Love with Me

New York Times went over what psychologist Arthur Aron believes are 36 essential questions that can accelerated falling in love. Aron explores the idea of intimacy between complete strangers by having them ask each other a series of 36 personal questions and answers.

So I decided, like any rational woman trying to avoid editing her own writing to give these questions a shot. *You’re supposed to answer these questions with “a partner” but I have no stranger, I have no man to test this out with, so I will just write out my portion.

You’ve been warned, you may fall in love with me. (Not).

Set I

  1. Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest? I’ve been wrecking my mind over who I would want to have dinner with. Between famous writers to my mentors (who I have dinner with at least a few times a year) If I’m going to be a genie with this dinner, perhaps I can say I want to have dinner with someone who would end up having amazing sex with me after dinner. That’s the choice I’m hoping for, knowing it ain’t happening anymore.
  2. Would you like to be famous? In what way? I don’t think I want to be famous. I spill food on my clothes and I like going to the bank looking a mess and buying food in questionable outfits. If I was famous I would be plastered all over tabloid covers with the caption “What was she thinking?” Perhaps in the most unrealistic idea of wanting to be famous, would be to have a collection of poetry sell well. That would be marvelous.
  3. Before making a telephone call, do you ever rehearse what you are going to say? Why? Better question would be when don’t I? I always prep phone conversations. As a person with high anxiety and someone involved in the speech community, it’s important to prep my conversations. Plus if it’s an important phone call you’d be crazy, not to prep the conversation!
  4. What would constitute a “perfect” day for you? Gosh, I’ve answered this before: Drinking tea, working on my writing, chatting with friends, eating some good food and some good sex. Watching a movie and cuddling with someone would be nice right about now. Or: Going on a hike, reading a wonderful book and lying out somewhere beautiful.
  5. When did you last sing to yourself? To someone else? Last time I sang to myself was yesterday driving home from work. I sang “Flawless” by Beyonce, “OctaHate” by Ryn Weaver and “Come And Get Your Love” by Redbone. The last I sang to someone else, umm probably when I was drunk  and it was probably “My humps.” Get me drunk enough, ask me to sing, I’ll probably sing.
  6. If you were able to live to the age of 90 and retain either the mind or body of a 30-year-old for the last 60 years of your life, which would you want? My mind, because once the mind goes its really hard to enjoy life, to enjoy who you are. If the mind goes how can the body really stick around? Or why would the body want to?
  7. Do you have a secret hunch about how you will die? Sometimes when I’m driving I picture a car slamming into me or I have these terrible dreams where a man tries to rape me. But no secret hunch, because my hunches are always wrong.
  8. (Can’t do 8, about a partner)
  9. For what in your life do you feel most grateful? For my learning disability. I’m not sure who I would be if not for carrying this particular part of myself. I’m aware my disability has given me compassion, empathy and the willingness to walk in another’s shoes.
  10. If you could change anything about the way you were raised, what would it be? Maybe to be less anxious and more of a risk taker. 
  11. (Can’t do this one….partner)
  12.  If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability, what would it be?  To only need an hour or two of sleep a night and to never feel drowsy. 

Set II

  1.  If a crystal ball could tell you the truth about yourself, your life, the future or anything else, what would you want to know? The sane, logical, what how I know I should answer with, I don’t want to know about my future, we aren’t meant to. But the insane side of me, who peeks at season finals and awards shows online before I watch them would want to know about her future. I would never ask about myself because I’m sure I know all about my negative flaws and insecurities I mean I do spend 24/7 with myself. 
  2. Is there something that you’ve dreamed of doing for a long time? Why haven’t you done it? Not really. I want to travel more and I will eventually I want to get my masters and I will. Geez questions gives us a break, dreams are called dreams for a reason. It’s a work in progress. 
  3. What is the greatest accomplishment of your life? I’m never sure how to word this, because it’s not exactly receiving my bachelor’s degree. I want more than that now. How do you really explain to someone that your greatest accomplishment is overcoming everything you thought you would never could? The way I write, the way I read, the way I believe I can achieve so much more, that’s my greatest accomplishment.
  4. What do you value most in a friendship? Trust and honesty
  5. What is your most treasured memory? How can anyone just have one treasured memory? I treasure the memories I have camping and looking up at the stars. The national parks I’ve been too. I treasure each moment I get up on stage and perform my poetry. Actually, I also really treasure when I performed two of these Dramatic Interpretations. (Won’t give out the names) but I really felt like myself and another person all at once. That moment where you finally take a breath, magic.
  6. What is your most terrible memory? I have two memories that are so strong it feels like they happened yesterday: 1. When I was in kindergarten and I saw my dog get hit by a car. 2. IWhen I was very little I had a brain scan. It was terrible, dark, cold room. The cap on my head looked like a swimmers cap and the paste from the metal rods in my hair twisted and hurt my head. I knew why I was there because one of the teachers in the special education program wanted to figure out if I was autistic or not. One of the first times, I really felt like something was wrong with me, but I couldn’t see it or feel it, but I understood that I wasn’t like everyone else in my class. 
  7. If you knew that in one year you would die suddenly, would you change anything about the way you are now living? Why? Of course, I would change how I was living. I would only have one year left. I would go do all the things I was putting on hold and spend time with those that mean the most to me. Which then begs the question, why are you putting anything on hold? Why not live life to the fullest! *Mind blown.
  8. What does friendship mean to you? It’s like a relationship without sex. I don’t expect them to be around me 24/7 or to talk with me every day, but its nice to know they are there and they care about me and they are thinking about me. Friendship is the give and take, the making fun of each other and drinking in sweats, watching terrible movies and picking up awful drive-thru foods like McDonalds at 2AM.
  9. What roles do love and affection play in your life? A very big role in my life that I continually try to ignore. 
  10. (Can’t…no partner)
  11. How close and warm is your family? Do you feel your childhood was happier than most other people’s? My intermediate family is pretty close, but they stay out of my dating life, etc. I like it that way. But my parents are very warm and caring people. I’ve always been told by my friends and cousins how lucky I am to have parents like mine. I’m very thankful for the childhood I had. I may have struggled with my learning disability but I had great parents to hold my hand along the way.
  12. How do you feel about your relationship with your mother? It’s no Gilmore Girls relationship (thank goodness) But it gets the job done. We would clash when I was a teenager (I know, how unusual) But I have a great relationship with my mother.

Set III

  1. Make three true “we” statements each. For instance, “We are both in this room feeling … “ (I’ll try to do this one) We don’t know each other. We may never meet. Yet we must feel close to this point of the questions.
  2. Complete this sentence: “I wish I had someone with whom I could share … “ Speech and Debate, books and writing with.
  3. If you were going to become a close friend with your partner, please share what would be important for him or her to know. (No partner, but I can answer this out to space) I can’t cook, I’m too hard on myself, I worry I’m not good at sex or no one will want to be with me, in the long run. I hate being belittled or being put down. I’m terrible at taking medicine. I can be super organized or very messy. The most important part of love for me is having a best friend in the person I choose to date, to sleep with, to be in a relationship with. I want a best friend in that person.
  4. (Need partner)
  5. Share with your partner an embarrassing moment in your life. I have to share just one. Gosh, I don’t even nowhere to begin. I remember one embarrassing time I was in the middle of anal with one of the guys I was seeing and he was at his mother’s large house (his house was being renovated) I’m sure she walked in for a hot second. He didn’t notice, but I did.
  6. When did you last cry in front of another person? By yourself? In front of someone: last month in front of my parents. By myself: Monday night.
  7. (Need partner)
  8. What, if anything, is too serious to be joked about? Rape jokes and “you’re a woman” jokes. It’s hard to specify exactly want not to joke about in front of me. I think its just understanding and knowing the limits of a joke.
  9. If you were to die this evening with no opportunity to communicate with anyone, what would you most regret not having told someone? I’m not sure if I can answer this one exactly how I would want to.
  10. Your house, containing everything you own, catches fire. After saving your loved ones and pets, you have time to safely make a final dash to save any one item. What would it be? Why? Only one item?! Damn! I guess this old copy of The Velveteen Rabbit. It’s a really old copy and books mean so much to me.
  11. Of all the people in your family, whose death would you find most disturbing? Why? My little brother, because he’s my little brother. I would hate to know his life, was cut short. Plus I would miss having one of my closest friends around.
  12. Share a personal problem and ask your partner’s advice on how he or she might handle it. Also, ask your partner to reflect back to you how you seem to be feeling about the problem you have chosen. Ok, I was going to do this one but after a page worth of writing I realized no, too much. Wanna know about my problems, want to help? Email me: astirwriter@gmail.com

So, feeling the love yet? A warm feeling? Heart beating fast If so then you should get that checked out?

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Once a Skinny Girl Always a Bigger Girl

(I could have written more on this subject but it have gone on, so forgive me if I seem to be leaving out thoughts and ideas).

For the majority of my life, I’ve been a skinny girl. Not just kind of thin, but I a stick in high school and I wore double zero jeans. Which prompted my college friends who glanced at old prom photos of me to ask if I had been anorexic:

No, I wasn’t anorexic. I was just a really thin kid. My fathers side of the family hasn’t always been the best gift givers in the generic trait gifting department, between the shortness, the ingrown toenails and the crooked teeth, acne I got one wonderful generic trait that everyone on my father’s side has: “a fast metabolism.” My dads side of the family is the “on the go” kind of people, were cooking is never a concern for them. They would rather be outside running, riding dirt bikes or cycling. So I was lucky to eat whatever I wanted and gain nothing. It also helped I rode dirt bikes on weekends, played on club soccer team, ran cross country and track and really never sat still for a minute as a child.

Growing up I was a tomboy. There was no room for dresses or nice shoes in elementary school. Those clothing items only got in the way of recess sports. I wanted to play sports with the boys and prove I was much faster and more athletic than all of them. (I always was). Sports were a huge aspect of my life as a child due to the fact that I wasn’t great in the school. My learning disability made me quite and take a back seat in class, but sports I discovered was something I excelled at from an early age. So no dresses, no fancy shoes, no cute braids in my hair. My mother always tells me how badly she wanted to dress me up when I was young, but I would always just squirm out of everything. When I was away at school she would randomly send me clothes because she was so excited that finally I wanted to wear the cute dresses and boots and put on make

When I was away at school she would randomly send me clothes because she was so excited that finally I wanted to wear the cute dresses and boots and put on makeup.

End of sophomore year I was side-tackled pretty bad during a school soccer practice. Normally I’m pretty good at shaking things off like that, but I remember feeling pretty dizzy after the fall. I had landed on my neck and back in the worst of ways, but regardless of the dizziness of the fall I shook it off and went on with the day. Later that afternoon I went up to my mother worried because I could turn my neck left or right. It was very tender and very difficult to extend my neck. After a long E.R. visit, they found no broken bones. Few months later I was in Physical Therapy and after a few MRIs they told me I injured all the soft tissue in my back and neck. Lots of painkillers, lots of crying and not sleeping. I stopped playing club soccer and around my senior year, I did try stepping back in and it just wasn’t the same anymore.

I started to really gain more weight my first year at my four-year university. I was older, it was cold as fuck there. So  between growing up and filling out into a more woman form, to adding on meat to survive the winters I had gained more weight. I’ve gone from double zero to trying to a bridesmaid dress, size 10.

I’ve never really had a problem with my weight or my body. Besides my face breaking out I’ve never looked in the mirror dissatisfied with myself. I do love my body for what it is now but sometimes I just can’t help but dread the extra pound, dread putting on a swimsuit, the pool club parties I have to attend, the magazine folds full on women who look nothing like me. The thought that perhaps I’m not going to find someone to be with because this weight isn’t always ideal, isn’t always attractive.

And before you go on a rant of, “don’t say that” or “you are beautiful” even though none of you know what I really look like. I think my point with this whole post is the fact that nothing really has gotten better in the war of body shapes and sizes. Yes, there are more natural bodies in magazines, across the internet but has it really changed anything or have these larger bodies just shuffled into the folds next to everything else?

We spend so much time criticizing a dolls shape, a song about “bass” or how much the latest celebrity momma has shaved off her post-baby body. We forget to talk about how we aren’t over the thin body craze. How much my guy friends skim through hot thin celebrities, hot thin models and any larger woman has “personality” “humor” “big spirited” but the body is still left.

I sit down in my room looking down at my body and I realize we haven’t turned the tide at all in what is truly beautiful. Because I love my body, but I fear showing it off in public, because it’s not the ideal body.

“Sadly, the signals that allow men and women to find the partners who most please them are scrambled by the sexual insecurity initiated by beauty thinking. A woman who is self-conscious can’t relax to let her sensuality come into play. If she is hungry she will be tense. If she is “done up” she will be on the alert for her reflection in his eyes. If she is ashamed of her body, its movement will be stilled. If she does not feel entitled to claim attention, she will not demand that airspace to shine in. If his field of vision has been boxed in by “beauty”–a box continually shrinking–he simply will not see her, his real love, standing right before him.” ― Naomi Wolf

Rough Month (January)

My brother came across me hanging out in the kitchen at 2AM. I made me him jump and yell a little when he saw me standing by the fridge pouring apple juice, eating a bowl of sharp cheddar in my purple underwear.

“Sister! You’re a mess!”

I dislike the month of January, it’s always such a funky month for me. My writing has been crap, I’ve only  submitted to four journals and I can barely hammer out a new poem or clean up an old one. (This happened last January too). Or actually February, but like a period playing a trick on you my bad writing month came earlier.

Sometimes I just feel like such a shitty writer (I can’t even criticize myself in a more structured, fluent sentence) just “shitty” and I just don’t know how on earth I’m going to get into an MFA program. I mean I’m not the kind of person great things happen to. I don’t win all the prizes, awards, I don’t have schools knocking down my door looking for me.

I really hate my job right now. Or I really hate my boss, a wishy-washy, unorganized person who thinks their an educator when really they’re only into it if it’s making the money. My hours have been cut a bit and I feel like my boss is mad at me, for whatever reason I will never know or understand. But I don’t want to teach how they are. All those damn worksheets, that’s not teaching, that’s a cop out. My job has exhausted me to the point I cringe going into work, I’ve given up a bit of work. But I’m putting through, making what I can and then looking around for other jobs. I think I may just stick around here until summer. With my friends wedding and a few speech alumni functions happening I rather work somewhere a bit more flexible work schedule.

I was telling my mom everything that’s been going on at work. She’s been a bit upset to hear how down it’s making me. Especially because she knows I don’t get like this unless I’m really beaten down. How they demand such a high standard of their teachers, yet here I am working at night and I ask where my bosses kid is and they’ve gone on a trip. (Thanks for telling me ahead of time). Also, they’re a bit over religious for my taste. Now don’t get me wrong I don’t mind anyone’s religion but when it starts leak into one’s workplace I’m not such a fan. One time I was sitting in with my boss and another teacher discussing a student and my boss goes goes, “well he’s a freshman dating a senior and I think this senior girl is very promiscuous.”

I’m thinking, “well shit what would you label me if you knew all the weird sex shit I’ve done.” If dating someone, like what senior to a freshman, that’s like maybe three to four years apart? Damn if my boss thinks that’s bad…

So lately I’ve taken to crying in the cry without feeling it coming. Like today, I tried to run a one of my poems as I was driving to work and I just started crying. On the way home three nights ago I just started crying.

It’s a mixer of many things:

  1. Knowing my period is next week
  2. I’ve been fighting this cold (my ears keep popping)
  3. I’m really unhappy with work
  4. Writing has been terrible (the month of rejection)
  5. I’ve been stressing about money.
  6. I haven’t had sex in a year and two months. (this is a thing…getting pounded really calms me down).
  7. The ever looming MFA applications are a little knife in my side
  8. Still adjusting to not having my friends around. I have friends here, but I don’t tell them much about my bad days.
  9. That new super bowl commercial Budweiser has with the puppies is making me cry
  10. After a month of watching my Grandmother very slowly waste away, I think it’s all about over.
  11. My face has been breaking out like I’m sixteen years old again.
  12. And I’ve never felt more terrible about my body than I do this month.

Ok, I got that all out. 

I really hate crying sometimes and I hate when I get like this. I feel like I shouldn’t get like this anymore. I’m an adult and adults hold themselves together. I call these last few years the crying years and I blame speech and debate for that. From the ages of 8-18, I wasn’t a crier. I played sports and I took crying as a weakness, a way for the other team to learn your weakness. Also, I’ve always had a very high pain tolerance.

Expect anal, that’s just the most uncomfortable feeling ever and I’m good. Been there, tried that. not for me.

Now that I have all that negative bullshit out of my way I’m going to list the good things about this month, even though I still feel a bit shitty. But that’s ok to feel shitty, right? I think there’s a book that teaches this very lesson…umm its called, “Everybody poops.

Shit that was good about January:

  1. I wrote this fucking awesome poem about male rape for my friend speech. I guess people are really digging it and I just sent out to a journal. One of the few poems I sent around to my good friends to workshop and they didn’t have any edits. I was like Woah guys, you all always have grammar suggestions.
  2. The sky was beautiful yesterday
  3. My mom took me out to lunch. She knows what makes me feel better (Pizza and clam chowder).
  4. I’ve been a reading machine (more time for reading)
  5. I have icy hot again….mmmm icy hot is so good
  6. My room is almost done (I know took me forever) Just need to hang up a few things.
  7. Spent a lot of time with my best friend Tammy (went hiking).
  8. I’ve been posting a lot to this blog, which is nice. I normally don’t write this much for my blogs.
  9. Two of my students drew pictures for me (nice kids).
  10. I’m getting back into my submission groove, whether I like it or not!
  11. Also, I’m glad its 2015. I don’t think I could have lasted another month in 2014 because I kept saying 2004 so often I felt like I may have been slowly going back in time.
  12. The cheddar cheese this month was awesome

So it’s 3AM

I’m going back to the sharp cheddar

liz_lemon

Some of my Favorite things that aren’t included in The Sound of Music

Some of my favorite things

  1. If I had to pick a favorite movie I would pick, Pans Labyrinth. I love the movements of the characters, the childhood escapism, and the symbolism happening with numbers and folklore of Mexico.
  2. Favorite song, “Here Comes the Sun” by The Beatles
  3. I have a slight Coca-Cola & Dr. Pepper addiction
  4. I’m addicted to The Walking Dead
  5. I love to go hiking
  6. One of my favorite places to visit is Zion National Park
  7. Another favorite place of mine is the desert. I practically grew up out there because my family would go out every weekend to ride dirt bikes.
  8. I love drinking warm tea. (I love tea)
  9. Oh, soup is so comforting. I love eating soup, especially creamy soup.
  10. My favorite breed of dog is a Kerry Blue Terrier. We had one when I was very little and she was my favorite dog ever. I saw her get hit by a car when I was in kindergarten. I miss her so much.