Thursday, October 28, 2010

a letter to the universe.

I got another phone call today. Some days I can roll with the punches, while other days the reality hits me deep into my soul and it feels like my insides are getting ripped out and I am punched in the gut and the universe throws her hands up into the air as if saying you are mine to play with, to toss around like a tiny ship in the deep sea. to throw like a frisbee so far up into the sky that those around you look tiny like little marching ants, unable to relate or hear you. A tiny dice, 'pass go; do not collect two hundred dollars'.

But then I am reminded, I am the universe. You are the universe. Mitchell is the universe. She is the universe. My parents are the universe. And that man who cut me off in traffic... he is the universe. And I sit for a moment, tossing a handful of acorns around between my finger tips. Reminding me that this is life and I am alive and this is so very, very real. The wind is blowing and the sun is blinding me and I desperately try to stay centered by focusing on those acorns and remembering that life is real, and it's all we've got.

I listen to my godmother say the words that she has said so many times before and will likely say again and again until she is blue in the face. Mitchell is back in the hospital. And as she is speaking, I'm not really listening to her words but rather focusing on those tiny acorns and repeating Stop it. Don't think about it. Every time my face gets hot and my breath shortens and I use all of the strength in my body to hold back the flood wall keeping back tears that once they are released, never seem to stop coming. I tuck those acorns into my pocket and swear to myself that this moment will be burned into my memory. If I ever feel like things aren't real enough - those acorns will bring me back to this moment. This moment when things just got a little too real.

I didn't give her a lot of emotion. And I feel guilty and pleased all at once because her baby is in the hospital and she doesn't need to comfort me when she's the one who needs to be comforted. The idea that we can be there for each other hasn't even crossed my mind because I don't know how and I muster up another 'keep me updated' before coldly tuning out and hanging up. I start feeling the tears come, hot and salty, and this time louder I shout to myself Stop it. Stop thinking about it. This person, who I physically share more with than even my husband - why did I not sense that he was sick again. My organ now lives inside of his body and I curse it under my breath, because it didn't do what I thought it would... it didn't make him better. I didn't get to choose how this one would turn out. We don't get to have control.

I tried to distract my attention by rubbing my fingers against the acorns which were hidden in my pocket. I got on the elevator, greeted my co workers, and put on a fancy smile. I repeated it's okay over and over until I believed it and I ate my sandwich and drank my water and pretended everything really was alright. These phone calls are an emotional roller coaster. Disbelief. Worry. Sadness. Anger, such as why can't those goddamn doctors find out what's wrong with him. Ultimatley they end in guilt, because I get to go home to my family and Mitchell doesn't. Not today and not tomorrow and probably not the day after that.

[The funny thing, is how I was literally just thinking about how much hospitals give me the creeps. Hospitals suck and anyone whose ever had to spend the night there knows that the only thing you're thinking about is when do I get to go home.]

But I think that because we make up the universe and because Mitchell is the universe and I am the universe and you are the universe and he is the universe and those doctors are the universe, I think that there is a lot to be said about our thoughts and the energy that we give the situation at hand. The universe does not throw up her hands and leave us all alone, because she is all of us together. And I have to learn how to lean on others and for them to lean on me and to find that balance. I have to find that balance and accept when things go differently than what I had planned or Mitchell had planned or anyone else for that matter. I have to trust that my kidney is doing all that it can for Mitchell's body and if it doesn't last even a year, at least it bought him some time and at least maybe it bought the doctor's some time and they will someday know what is going on.

I have to give out positive energy and not feed into the negative, which is so much easier said than done. I have to remember that we are all in this together, and that I do not have all the answers, and that the universe will embrace all of our souls and wrap us all up together and open us back up again like a shiny box tied up with a big, red bow.

All Hallows Eve

Halloween is my favorite holiday for several reasons: I love candy, I love dressing up, and most of all..... I love spooking myself and my friends. Yesterday I literally hit a gold mine when I discovered the website Cracked.Com - have you ever heard of it? Well.... I got caught up reading about Urban Legends that aren't really legends at all! I think the most chilling one was about a man who had gotten a job offer and was told to go to a specific hostil and wait for someone to pick him up. Soon after he arrived, two men drugged him and he woke up strapped to a gurney in unbearable pain. They stole his kidney and sold it on the black market! Then there's a story about a couple who was spending the night in a hotel room. There was an unidentifiable stench coming from underneath the bed, and after sleeping through the entire night they finally reported the smell to the front desk. Let's just say this - next time I visit a hotel, I will be looking under the bed from now on.... there was a rotting corpse hidden in their boxspring!!! There are four articles on these sort of creepy legends.... check them out here, here, here, and here. I literally could not stop reading once I started...

I will more than likely be neglecting my blog until Monday, because I will be busy dressing up/casting spells/eating candy/howling at the moon and hanging out with two of my best college friends who will be here tomorrow! I'm super excited [if you couldn't already tell]!

10 Really Cool Facts About Halloween:
for more... check out here - the place I got all of this info from :)

[1.] Some believe that Halloween is derived from the Celtic New Year, which celebrates the end of spring/summer (the "lighter half" of the year) and the beginning of fall/winter (the "darker half"). They believed that on this night, the border between this world and that of the afterlife became espcially thin and spirits -both good and evil- could pass through.

[2.] The tradition of wearing costumes came from the thought that this practice would ward off evil spirits. The idea is that if you look like an evil spirit, the real spirits will avoid you.
[so all you un-fun people out there, you better dress up this year!]

[3.] The reason it's popular to carve and light pumpkins comes from the tradition of commemorating souls in purgatory and to also ward off evil spirits. [they used to use turnips, but we now use pumpkins because they're larger and more plentiful]

[4.] Ever wonder why Halloween colors consist of black and orange? Black represents the darkness of the night and orange represents the color of the leaves, bonfires and pumpkins.

[5.] In Scotland, some children take the term trick or treat literally. They perform some sort of trick, such as singing a song or telling a ghost story, and in turn they are given a treat.

[6.] Trick-or-treating resembles the late medieval practice of souling, when poor folk would go door to door on Hallowmas (November 1), receiving food in return for prayers for the dead on All Souls Day(November 2).

[7.] Here's a fun game: In the 19th century, unmarried women were told that if they sat in a darkened room and gazed into a mirror on Halloween night, the face of their future husband would appear in the mirror. However, if they were destined to die before marriage, a skull would appear. To me, it sounds a lot like the game Bloody Mary I used to play as a kid... which let's be honest, is much more fun!

[8.] Haunted attractions in the United States bring in an estimate $300–500 million each year, and draw some 400,000 customers.

[9.] Remember you mother warning you about razor blades being hidden in apples and throwing away candy that wasn't wrapped? At the peak of the hysteria, some hospitals offered free X-rays of children's Halloween hauls in order to find evidence of tampering.

[10.] Did you know that apples used to be a symbol of fertility? The game bobbing for apples originated from this belief and it was thought that the first to grab an apple in their teeth would be the first to marry. Girls who place the apple they bobbed under their pillows are said to dream of their future lover.[fun fact: they used to throw apples at weddings rather than rice... ouuuuuch!]

Have a happy and safe Halloween!!

both pictures found on

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

what i will tell my daughter when boys call her fat.

It's inevitable. Some day I will have a perfect baby and some one out there will mock them. Tell them that they don't matter. Make fun of their looks and their imagination and the way that they dance to their own tune. As much as I would like to shake this person and yell and scream and cry, I know that I cannot. I cannot expect everyone to cherish my little ball of energy and flowing creativity. I want to raise my children to stand out, to be themselves, and that makes some very uncomfortable. Some day I may have a beautiful little girl, and some day someone out there may make them second guess themselves. They may call them a word that travels all the way to their core and makes them want to hide away in a shell. When they run into my arms I will envelope them in my chest and tell them that fear breeds anger, and that sometimes when people are hurting, they try as hard as they can to hurt others. I will tell her that the most powerful thing in this world is love, and loving yourself is the most important thing one can ever do to change the world. If you want to change the world, love yourself. Because when you love yourself, it makes the world light up and your heart laugh and you can't help but love and appreciate others. You will want them to love themselves, too.

When she looks up at me, wide eyed with lashes soaked with tears, lashes that go on for miles like her daddy's, I will be completely honest. When she asks me Mama, am I pretty? Because a boy told me today that I'm fat. Am I? I will tell her the truth: that she is beautiful and that when people hurt they want others to hurt. When she says Mama, I think I will look great once I lose 10 pounds. If I just lose a little bit more weight, then I will be able to love myself. I will remind her how much I have wanted her, my entire life. How much beauty I see when I look at her, inside and out. That she is more to me than a number on the scale, and that a number can never define her worth as a person.

I will tell her about my very first boyfriend. I was in middle school and he was so much more popular than I was. He reminded me of this on a daily basis, so as not to forget. When his friends would talk about me, he would remind me that they didn't really know me. They wouldn't love me if they did, because he was the only person who ever could. When we were alone, I would recall how he would tell me how I could afford to lose a few pounds. I would tell her that one week I survived on saltines alone, because that's how much his words hurt. Why did you believe that, mama? she will ask. And I will tell her that sometimes, when you are hurting and you forget that there are so many people out there who love you and appreciate you and think your special, sometimes when you forget about these people, it's harder to stand up for yourself and speak up and really cherish yourself. Sometimes you start to believe what they're saying, and their voice becomes the loudest voice in your head. And you hear it every time you look into the mirror or get into a bathing suit or take a picture. That's when you need to remember. Remember the people in your life who love you and cherish you and think you're really something special. Because you are, I've wanted you for my entire life.

If she comes to me and says, Mama, I can't eat that cookie. I need to lose a little more weight and then, then I will love myself. I will tell her about the night before I married her daddy, when a boy called my best friend fat. I will remember how she stopped dead in her tracks, all confidence stripped away from her being, and how I held her in my arms as she cried. I will never forget how her face changed as those words poured out of his mouth. He was trying to hurt her. And he did. I will tell her that sometimes, people are mean. Sometimes, people want to hurt eachother, and the easiest way to do that is through our words. That's why it is so very important that you always remember that your words will impact someone. Just as that boy hurt you, you are capable of hurting someone else. It is so very important that you remember to build others up with your words, even when they are trying to pull you down.

If she is still not convinced, I will tell her about how much food haunted me as a young adult. I will tell her that for several years I lied about what I was doing in the bathroom, because I was too ashamed to tell others. Because somehow, I thought I would be judged because I couldn't lose the weight on my own. The weight that was holding me back from really loving myself. I will tell her how it felt to look at myself in the mirror and poke and prod at every imaginable flaw. I will tell her that there was a time when I couldn't stand to be around myself because I just knew that my friends were calling me fat when I wasn't looking. I will tell her that life is short and beautiful and a great adventure - and that there is simply not enough time in all of the universe to spend even a moment second guessing yourself. Because, I will tell her, she is the most beautiful being and I have wanted her my entire life.

And I will tell her that it is our job as women to build eachother up. Because in a world where our voices are not always loud enough to be heard, and our paychecks not always as large, and our bodies never perfect... I will tell her that this is the most important thing: to love youself and to love others. To remember how it felt when a person looked in your direction and said you. are. fat. To remember how it felt to look into the mirror and shift your body from side to side, poking it in disgust. To remember how it felt. I will tell her that her words have the power to help other women love themselves.

Because there is no time to waste on silly negativity and harsh words. Life is not long enough to spend time bogged down, in a constant battle with yourself. I will remind her that you come into the world alone and you leave it alone - your body is your vehicle that gets you from one place to the next, and it is perfect in every. single. way. Never forget where you came from and where you are going. Never forget that you are important and special and that I have always, always, always wanted you. You are worth loving. You have the freedom and the capabilities to be so much more than just a number on a scale. And any guy who cannot see that, any one of them - they can go to hell.

Because I will be her example. I will show her that I am strong and I am passionate and I am not finished fighting. I will not give up and I will not let another person make me second guess myself. I will tell her that even though all of this has happened, all of these people and words and feelings that could have very well helped me to end it all -- these are the things that have made me stronger and helped me grow and to appreciate who I am and what I have to offer this universe. I will tell her that once you are able to embrace yourself, then you can truly live. Because when you love yourself, you can recognize that the boy calling you fat has so much more going on in his mind than the words that are leaving his lips. You can remind yourself that when people hurt, they sometimes hurt others. You can embrace the reality that not everyone is going to like you, but sometimes all that matters is that you like yourself.

Friday, October 22, 2010

smile. be thankful. repeate.

Lately I've been really consumed with talking Sean into moving away from Richmond. I don't think we're going anyplace new anytime soon... so I think I'll remind myself of happy things on a daily basis to keep me in the moment and thankful. Here are 10 things I love about Richmond, Virginia.....

[01.] We live right on the floodwall, and sometimes I can smell fresh water and sand when I breathe in deep.

[02.] Who wouldn't love a view of the city skyline before falling asleep.

[03.] I love living in the Art District, and it's kind of cool living across the street from our wedding venue.

[04.] Let's be honest...... Richmond has a great music scene. {see here, here and here}

[05.] I loveeee living in the tattoo capitol of the east coast... and celebrate often with new ink.

[06.] My favorite consignment shop Clementine {and name of my future daughter} is here.

[07.] Carytown. Drew Berrymore loves it as much as we do ;)

[08.] So much creativity everywhere you turn: colorful graffiti, art walks, architecture.

[09.] Really great museums such as here, here and here.

[10.] The best resteraunts - very important to a foodie such as myself.

That took me all of 5 minutes... and I'm sure I could list at least 20 more things that I love about my hometown. Yes, I still want to move some place new and exciting... but for the time being I can be thankful for where I'm at.

What's the best thing about where you're living?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

quarter-life crisis

"Physicists say we are made of stardust. Intergalactic debris and far-flung atoms, shards of carbon nanomatter rounded up by gravity to circle the sun. As atoms pass through an eternal revolving door of possible form, energy and mass dance in fluid relationship. We are stardust, we are (wo)man, we are thought. We are story."
{Glenda Burgess}

Sometimes I feel like the smallest person in the world. And lately, I have felt almost alone even when in a crowded room. Almost like I am unable to relate to people that I once thought of as exactly like me. I think that I am suffering a quarter-life crisis. Last night, I came home from dinner with my family and I marched up to our rooftop and laid down on my back. We live near an airport, so I stayed for a while and watched the planes come in and out. I looked up at the stars and wondered what it would be like to visit outer space. To really be out there, so far away. Looking down upon the little blueberry we call Earth. I lit a cigarette and turned on my ipod and just enjoyed being with myself. I felt protected by the cool air and the warm city lights. I thought about how much I have missed being with myself. Moreover, how much I have missed liking myself. But I thought mostly about how forced my life feels right now. The 9-to-5 schedule seems to bog me down at times and I like to imagine how different my life would be if I were able to quit my job and spend my days with nature. I hate feeling this way, because I really do love my job. I just love freedom more. I am craving that balance.

Last night we had dinner with one of my dad's childhood friends. He picked up and moved to Mexico City a few years ago, and listening to him talk about his life brought on a sense of sadness. Sadness that I will probably never have an adventure like that. I am so thankful for my life and my husband, but he is as passionate about staying in Virginia as I am about leaving it. I feel as though I am, at times, laying down in surrender. I thought about where I would go if there was no one here to keep me in Richmond. I dreamt big, too. Thoughts of Canada, London.....or even just the West Coast. There is something so romantic about leaving everything behind and starting a new life someplace else. Then I started thinking that maybe I am just running from something. Looking for an escape.

As I took in the last drag of my final cigarette, I looked behind me and felt an overwhelming guilt. I stood there, looking at our building and how thankful I should be for a pantry full of food and a steady income. I thought about my husband, and how thankful I am for the ways that he has been there for me when nobody else was. I felt like maybe I shouldn't be thinking these thoughts. I should enjoy where I am and let go of these crazy dreams of the bohemian lifestyle that I secretly crave: packing a van and traveling from countryside to countryside, selling art and only keeping enough to get by. And when we finally tired of the road, we would retire to a log cabin deep in the woods and on top of a mountain. I flicked my cigarette butt away, and returned to reality. A warm apartment with the television talking away in the background. Greeted by a husband who loves me more than I am sure I could ever understand.

Monday, October 18, 2010

i heart charlottesville

I had the best weekend e.v.e.r.
{it's official. i want to move.}

{does anyone out there know what this warehouse is used for? such an awesome space!!!}

Denise & Stuart {& Jimmy},

Thank you for one of the best weekends that I've had in a long time! It felt like we were in college again and I enjoyed forgetting my responsibilities for a while. I also enjoyed our midnight adventure to the grave yard and warehouse. And taking pictures of orbs. And ordering the nastiest shots at the bar.

p.s. - Come to Richmond soon and I promise more adventures, lots of laughing, and endless ammounts of fun!



Thursday, October 14, 2010

Rainy Day...

I should've studied meteorology rather than social work. Last night, Sean & I had date night at Baja Bean Co. {amazzzzing!} and around 7:00 p.m. I got a splitting headache. Not a migraine, but rather one that made me scream "hurry up and storm already!!!!" 12 hours later.... around 7 a.m. it started pouring down rain. About an hour later it started thundering. Ughh... it feels good to be right, but if only there were another way! Does this happen to anyone else? I'm sure it does!

Anyway.... this month has been overwhelming to say the least. Work has been super crazy and clients are coming out of the woodwork left and right. I'm still trying to get my application ready for Grad. School. I've also done a lot of thinking and re-evaluating and realized some things in my life that need to change dramatically. One thing in particular is that I am getting pretty tired of being what feels like the only liberal in Richmond City, minus Sean. And in order to hold this position, people tend to badger you and mock you and pretty much force you to defend your beliefs on a near constant basis. It makes me want to move far, far away... California or Washington State to be exact.

But for now..... Charlottesville will do just fine :)

I am so excited to visit one of my best friends from college, Denise, and her adorable husband Stuart this weekend. We always have a good time together, and I think that has a lot to do with the fact that we have so much in common. Not everything, but just enough to make it easy to block out the world and have our own little pow-wow about how things should be! Trust me.... our list is long.

Aside from our inevitable "If I could change the world" session, I am also really looking forward to the fall festivities we've been planning.....

I am treating myself tomorrow morning to this - these are my newest obsession.

I am also treating myself to these {because quite frankly, I deserve them!}

I am finally ordering my Halloween costume - this, this and this

Denise and I are going here for apples, pumpkins, donuts & wine

Seeing Ingrid Michaelson l.i.v.e.

Stuffing our faces here and here 
{and also looking forward to Denise's awesome cooking for dinner tomorrow night!!!!!}

and best of all......

In honor of Halloween, we're having a seance!

Scary, I know -- we'll see who cries first!

Can't wait to show you pictures on Monday...... :)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Yesterday was national coming out day and next Wednesday supporters are wearing purple in memory of recent suicides due to gay abuse.
{join the facebook group here}

Some Facts:
** LGBT = Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (Sometimes "Q" is added onto this to include Questioning)

90% of LGBT youth experience harassment in school. source

It is still legal in some states to fire a person due to their sexual preference. source

Adoption is particularly difficult, and sometimes impossible, for same-sex couples. source

A person cannot obtain social security benefits when their same-sex partner passes away. source

Same-sex couples cannot file jointly on their taxes. source

Boy Scouts of America bans LGBT {and also atheists and agnostics} as scouts and scout leaders. source

Same-sex couples and their families are denied access to the more than 1,138 federal rights, protections and responsibilities automatically granted to married heterosexual couples. source

Protections granted to married straight couples but denied to same-sex couples: hospital visitation, Social Security benefits, immigration, health insurance, estate taxes, family leave, nursing homes, home protection and pensions. source

LGBT and questioning youth are up to four times more likely to attempt suicide than their heterosexual peers. source

These are only a few of the ways we discriminate the LGBT community on a daily hourly basis.

This is a picture of the tattoo that I got several years ago to show my support for the GLBT community. I am shocked and disgusted every single time that a person comes up to me and tells me that my tattoo is stupid and the cause is un-important {gross, people like this actually exist within my social circle?!?!?}. Too many people have died or been harassed or otherwise treated less than human over their sexual orientation, and my tattoo is a way for me to advocate for them anytime someone asks me what this symbol stands for.

I hope you will join all of us in this fight for equality. You don't get to choose who you fall in love with.

If you haven't already, visit the Human Rights Campaign Website and discover ways that you can help!

Monday, October 11, 2010

the sight of the sea:

"There was a single blue line of crayon drawn across every wall in the house. What does it mean? I asked. A pirate needs the sight of the sea, he said and then he pulled his eye patch down and turned and sailed away."

Friday, October 08, 2010

have a relaxing weekend!

I don't know about you, but the month of October is so busy that I get exhausted just looking at my calendar. Next weekend I'm planning to check a few fun things off of my "fall to do list"... so this weekend I plan on relaxing with these two cuties.....

The husband's going to the mountains to visit with some friends from college, but I've become such a homebody and I miss lounging around our loft. Is it bad that I'm actually looking forward to cleaning this weekend?

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Note to Self:

Dear Self,

It's been a long few weeks, but you're strong; you can handle it. Why do you embrace everyone else's curves, but criticize ours? Think about that and get back to me. It's starting to hurt my feelings.



Monday, October 04, 2010

Corolla, NC

This weekend I went to Corolla, NC with a group of my best friends and it was an adventure to say the least. Starting with Thursday night. Some of us decided to take off from work on Friday and spend an extra night at the beach house. We squeezed into two cars and drove for 4 hours in the pouring rain and through flooded roads, only to realize that we had the WRONG KEY! That's right... we drove all that way and ended up sleeping outside in our cars..................................................... all I can say, is thank goodness for beer.

Luckily, the rest of the gang made it to Corolla early the next morning and the rest of the trip was perfect. I have been super stressed out lately, and lounging around the beach house in my sweats was exactly what I needed. Friday night I saw one of the prettiest sunsets that I have ever seen in my life {so mad I didn't have my camera!} and Saturday was sunny just long enough for us to have a few hours on the beach. I'm ready to go back!!

Here is a little taste of our weekend:

Hanging out on the porch all night in the rain......

Flooded Roads.....

<3 Corolla Beach <3

Dinner together our last night {thanks Mr. & Mrs. Gary!!}

Such an amazing weekend!!!!!!!

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