Hello, again, Stranger.

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Why, hello.  It’s been a while since I’ve been around these neck of the woods.

In fact, it’s been so long that I actually forgot my username and password. #facepalm

It has been 5 months since you’ve last heard from me.  School is out.  I survived — granted the last few weeks had lots of drama, tension, and tears — but I survived.  Now I am on 2 1/2 months of vacation and I don’t know what the heck to do with myself.  I’ve been working so hard, non-stop, that I am literally having trouble sleeping at night.  My body is exhausted, but my mind is still racing with all these ideas and thoughts about work/school, that I can’t get it to stop.  I spent 90% of the night tossing and turning and getting frustrated that sleep is eluding me.  Even Melatonin isn’t working for me.  #fml  I know working out is supposed to be helpful.  But come on.  You know that ain’t happening.

Besides getting a break from work, not much else has changed.  Except for the fact that 2 weeks ago, I turned 31.  That’s right.  I’m now living IN the 30s.  My biggest epiphany with this new age is that I literally don’t care anymore.  That seems to be the underlying theme when something comes up.  “I don’t care”.  I’m tired of caring about things that I don’t need to care about anymore.  I think that makes me even more crotchety than I already am, but it’s just where I’m at mentally.  Looking back over the last, maybe, 19 years of my life, I’ve always cared too much — about what people think, about what people will say, about what other people want me to do, be, look like, feel like, think like.   I’ve spent too much and given too much value to people’s opinions about and for me.  It’s because I listened to all the noise, that I feel like I’m in this place now, where I’m 31 and just now finding my own.  So, I don’t care anymore.  You don’t like what I’m wearing?  I don’t care.  You think I’m too fat?  I don’t care.  You think I’m too bossy?  Too old?  Too rude?  Too mean?  Too snarky?  I….don’t….care.

So…..there’s that.

I truly wish I had done a better job of blogging as things happened.  There was the “girls night out” that I should have avoided with my coworkers, where I was the designated driver as my coworkers got piss drunk.  There was the family wedding (who, if you’re a faithful reader, I did not attend the engagement of this family member) that we attended that was not as awkward and painful as I thought it would be, although it did make me sad.   There’s the fact that I deleted ALL my coworkers on Facebook.  After that hot mess of a night with the other coworkers, I quickly realized that coworkers were not meant to be friends.  They were meant to be coworkers.  I didn’t want them to know about my personal life, or lack thereof, and I really didn’t care about theirs.   I like being an enigma, sort of speak.  The less they know, the better.

So now I am left with 110 friends — all family and close friends (or people who I want to know about).  My Facebook is officially the most boring account on the planet because I get updates from said friends and family or celebrities.  It’s quite nice.  I deleted EVERYONE under the sun.  I’m sure it’s offended tons of people, but I really don’t care.  None of them were my friends in real life and if they’re upset about being deleted then I’m sad for them.  Because, what do they get from being friends with me?  It’s not like they were emotionally invested in me and my well-being.  It’s a numbers thing.

Meanwhile, summer plans consist of nothing.  Although, I do have plans to travel to Denver for a weekend, which will be nice.  My sister will be gone for 5 weeks to DC for something work-related, which I’m jealous of, but we have both agreed that it’s needed for both of our sanities.  Otherwise we’ll kill each other by August.

6 months in to 2014 and I’m still wondering and waiting for something to happen.  I’ve been told multiple times that it won’t “fall into my lap”, which I understand.  But if someone can just tell me what step I need to take next to MAKE the next thing happen, I’ll take it.  I think God and I are still on the outs, so as soon as I figure out how to fix that, I’ll get back to ya.

I hope you’ll stick around for the next couple months.  I’ll try to keep you entertained with all my wise words of wisdom.

It’s summertime, what else is a girl supposed to do?

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MMXIII

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8 hours away from 2014.

I am less hopeful and less optimistic than I have ever been before.  I used to look forward to the new year so much.  I would write pages worth of inspirational, spiritual, deep thoughts in my journal about what I hoped for the new year and reflect on the last year.  This year, not so much.  I am as pessimistic as they come.  Any hopes of something better coming does not exist in my mind.

This is not to say that God hasn’t blessed me this year, because He has.  I wouldn’t be sitting in my living room, on my comfortable couch, writing this to you if He hadn’t.  He has blessed me above and beyond what I could ever ask or deserve.  This is true for EVERY year, not just this.

But, this year has been a disappointing one, to say the least.  I’ve had lots changes, difficult ones, when it comes to friendships.  I’ve had to let go of a lot of people and it wasn’t an easy decision, but a necessary one.  And, although years from now, I may wonder if I made the right decision, I can say with full confidence that, right now, I am happy that I let go. I’m sad to say goodbye, but ready to fill my life with people who want to be a part of mine.

My job, as rewarding as it is, has been challenging to say the least. I’ve been pushed to take on more than I ever thought I could and I still find myself second guessing my abilities to do it.  But, clearly, God knows more than I do about what I can and cannot handle.

My passion to sing and lead worship has wasted away, which if anything, devastates me the most.  I fear that I’ve lost the talent and ability to do it anymore and I don’t know where to begin on how to fix that. Every day I wonder if I screwed myself up when I quit the worship team at church, because work was becoming too much.

I traveled more than years before.  We went to Cali for a couple of weeks and then to DC for a weekend. I hope 2014 holds more traveling opportunities for me.

I cussed a LOT more than usual.  The F word becoming a daily staple in my life.

I lost weight and gained it all back, successfully.

I spent WAY more money then I should have.

I’ve tried new styles in clothing.  I’m trying to stop dressing myself like a lesbian lady over 40.

I’ve realized how incredibly selfish and unforgiving I can be.

All in all, 2013 is a year that I’m willing to forget.  But, I’m not going to hold my breath for 2014.  I’m too old to keep hope alive for something that has disappointed me time and time again.

BUT…for you, my faithful readers (real and BOTS), I wish you all the best in 2014.  That all you hope for and aim to be, comes to pass this new year!

Pin in Moderation.

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I am addicted to Pinterest.  Typically, when I’m working, I don’t spend anytime pinterest_badge_redpinning anything on Pinterest.  I find that if I am pinning a lot, it’s usually when I am not working (summer, long breaks).  And I binge pin.  I will spend hours, quite literally, pinning away my hopes and dreams.  Even into the wee hours of the night, I am laying in bed, pinning, pinning, pinning.

This week-long break for Thanksgiving has been no different.  I try to use the excuse in the summer that I am pinning things for school (which I am).  But after school has started, I start pinning things that I might need therapy for.

For example, currently I have 431 pins for “My Dream Wedding”.   Yes, that’s right.  I am single and have no potential mate in my life right now, but I have 431 pins detailing every part of my wedding — down to the poses of pictures I would want to take.

I also have 286 pins for what I want my dream home to look like.   I’d have to find someone on “SeekingMillionaire.com” to actually make any of those pins come to fruition, but a girl can dream, can’t she?

The problem with Pinterest is that, when I use it for school, I can make those things happen.  I can make the crafts, do the lessons, etc.  But when I start pinning things about my wedding day or my dream home, I start to get really, really depressed.  Because for those countless hours I spend pinning my life away, I start realizing how much my life lacks.  I’m looking at all the things I WISH I had, instead of being grateful for what I already have!

I could delete Pinterest and be done with it all.  But, I really find it useful for school. I could delete my 431 pins for my dream wedding, but I like that I still have this part of me that dreams of my wedding day.  I’ve been so jaded by love and marriage, that it makes me feel good that there’s still an innocent, hopeless romantic in me that wants to fall in love. I think what I, and all pinners, need to remember is that Pinterest shouldn’t make you feel worse about yourself.  I have everything I am supposed to have right now and for that I am grateful.

Say Hello To My Little Friend, the “F” Word.

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As of late, I have taken up a bad habit of mine that I thought I had under control for a long time.  But it’s crept back into my life and now I feel powerless to stop it.  It’s like a part of me.  Second nature.  I do it without a care in the world.  I love it, but I hate it.  It’s freeing, yet a burden.  

What is it you may ask?  

Cussing.

I have been swearing like a drunken sailor and  I can’t stop myself.  My favorite word to drop is one of the worst ones of all — the “f” word and all variations of it.   The good Christian, the wannabe praise and worship leading girl in me hates this about myself.  Hate is an understatement. But for some reason, I can’t find a better word to adequately describe situations, people, circumstances, etc., without dropping the F bomb.  I’m not going to lie and pretend I’ve got it all together.   This whole idea that Christians don’t cuss or get angry makes me even more angrier.   I know swearing is a bad thing, and quite unnecessary if you’re a good Christian, at that.  

But man, when I’m venting, that F word sure does me a lot of good.

I hate to say that it probably brings me as much joy as chocolate and rom coms/hindi movies do when Aunt comes to visit every 4 weeks.  (And, by aunt, I am assuming you’re able to piece together who THAT is).

To be honest with you, 3 things have stayed loyal to me in my life — God.  My sister. And the F word.   None of those have let me down.   Forgive me if I choose to not turn my back on it either.  

Do I want to stop?  Of course I do!  I want to be a model citizen, woman, role model, and leader.   

But does it make a horrible, terrible person if I say it?  

I mean, it’s not like I bust it out in casual conversation.   It’s not like I’m at the dinner table with my parents and say, “OMG this is so f—king good!”.   I mean, c’mon.   I’m not THAT bad.  And if you know my mom, then you know that would NEVER happen.  She freaks out when I say hell.   She’d have a heart attack if she ever heard me say the F word.   I only invite the F word when I’m really mad or when I am venting about something that makes me really upset.    I would love to hear what all these other perfect Christians say when they’re mad.  I can guarantee that none of their words can hold a candle to F.

I’m torn on whether or not I should feel bad about the fact that I’ve taken up cussing again.  I’m sure when this blog becomes public and I’m famous and leading worship in places, people will bring this up and try to haunt me with it.  But, I’m going to own up to it.   

I cuss.  I get so mad and frustrated about things that sometimes I have to cuss.   Sometimes I say it a lot.   And at the end of the day, if my cussing is the WORST that I’ve done all day, considering all the other things I have been accused of doing/being/saying, then it’s the least of my concerns.

 

The Garbage Disposal

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I don’t consider myself a “handy” person.  I am tech savvy.  I am fond of organizing.  I am really good at making lists and schedules. But fixing things?  Negative.  So when our garbage disposal broke down months ago, I wasn’t too pleased.  I’ve lived in this house for 4 years and haven’t needed real maintenance, by the grace of God.  I needed a plumber once, 2 or 3 years ago, to replace a bathtub faucet.  Our air conditioner stopped working (due to dirt that had accumulated in 4 years) so we had a guy come check that out.  But for the most part, we haven’t needed much repairs DoubleSinkDrainaround here.  Thank God.   But then this dumb garbage disposal stopped working.

First, it got something stuck in there and made this horrible grinding noise.  So we just quit using it.   Then, suddenly it decided to start working again.  It was a Christmas miracle!  But, a couple of weeks later, it totally burned out.  It was over and done. So, we knew we would have to call someone to come fix it.  Who to call?  My dad has this disease of calling the most random, the most cheap, repairmen.  I’m not saying spend $$$ to fix something, but please don’t call some guy who has absolutely no training or is by no means qualified to run a business, let alone repair something.  Sorry, I need someone a little more reputable because I don’t have the luxury of spending money every few weeks because he didn’t fix it right the first time.

So, I did a FB call and asked my friends to give me some names.  Instead of names, though, they told me I could fix it myself.

Clearly, they just met me yesterday.

Me?  Fix a garbage disposal?  When did everyone become such comedians?

Then a friend messaged me and asked me what’s wrong and gave me some suggestions on what I could do, if I wanted to try to fix it on my own.

I threw the idea around for a little bit.  One thing I learned about in California was that I needed to become more self-sufficient.  Somehow, I’ve allowed myself to become reliant, even though I so desperately want to be my own.   So I decided, I’m going to bite the bullet and do it. I am going to fix the garbage disposal.

And that’s exactly what I did!

I fixed it!  I fixed the garbage disposal.  I know that’s not a big deal to some of you, but for me that’s a red-letter day in my book. It just proved to me that I COULD take care of myself.  This little thing that really isn’t that hard to fix, I fixed it.  This fear that I have that I need HELP to do things, even the most measly tasks, I am starting to realize that it was just something I created in myself.  Something that was only perpetuated by my environment.

It may be just a garbage disposal to you.  But to me, it’s just a small pit-stop on the road to discover who I really am and what I can REALLY do.

Still 29.

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I debated whether or not I should start this blog on my birthday when I officially turn 30 (May 20th, for anyone who is curious.  Send all checks to…..sorry, I couldn’t help it:)).   But, I figured it would be fun to fill you in on how I felt before the B-I-G day and then watch my life afterwards.

I know, I am making this sound like something EPIC is going to transpire when I turn 30.  Like, suddenly, the Earth will start spinning the opposite way or something.   I should be really honest with you, though….nothing is going to change.   More likely than not, I will be doing the same, predictable thing I have always done.   You just get a front row seat to watch.   Maybe the lesson you’ll learn from me will be what NOT to do when you’re about to turn 30?

I might make light of this, but the truth of the matter is, and to make myself sound like a guest on Oprah’s “Super Soul Sunday” — I feel a lot more reflective about myself now than I ever have before.   I am seeing and learning things about who I am and HOW I am as a person that I didn’t really pay attention to before.   It’s been uncomfortable and has, at times, filled me with shame and disappointment.   But isn’t that the point?   To realize your shortcomings and get better?

For example, on Friday, I was tweeting about how it was my last day of Spring Break and instead of being productive like I planned, I intended to lay on the couch all day long and do nothing — I was in denial that my break was ending.   Don’t get me wrong, I love my job as a teacher.  I wanted to do it since I was 6 (ask my sister and cousins who have stories of me forcing them to play school, as I was the mean teacher assigning homework to 4-5 year olds).  But, unless you’re in the throws of the job, you’ll never understand how much teachers NEED these breaks.  Teachers who want these breaks shouldn’t be berated for “not loving their jobs” or their kids.   I love my kids.   I love my job.  But I am human.  And when we teachers have poured and poured ourselves endlessly into 20 little lives every day, — days where either it’ll be fruitful or days where we’ll be hitting a wall — we get burned out faster than anyone else.  Have some empathy.

Anyway, after I tweeted this, an acquaintance I follow,  tweeted to teachers that if Spring Break ending was this traumatic, then, “please resign before you infect your class with your attitude.”.

I IMMEDIATELY responded the way I would have years ago — arms up, fists at the ready, punches about to go.   And so I did. I punched.  I hit him the only way I knew how — below the belt.   I got angry, tweeted about how people who aren’t teachers shouldn’t criticize especially when they’re sitting on their unemployed butts.  (He used to be a teacher, but became an artist).   I deleted him, blocked him, and immediately chalked it up to saying, “I’m 30 now….I aint putting up with anybody’s BS!”.

He responded with “I never heard you complaining. This was about someone on Facebook.  And I was a  teacher for 4-5 years before I decided to become SELF-employed not UNEMPLOYED”  I don’t know if he was telling the truth or not.  It seemed coincidental that it was soon after my tweet.   And my friends, afterwards, had said that perhaps he should have thought of people who follow him on twitter who could have taken it the wrong way.  All legitimate arguments, but the truth of the matter is, I lost my cool and while I basically put my character on the line, I also offended someone in the line of fire.

After a few tweets back and forth, and profusely apologizing (from my end), I spent the rest of the day beating myself up in my mind.  I couldn’t believe I blew something SO miniscule out of proportion.  Why didn’t I just handle it better?  If I thought it was directed at me, why wasn’t I adult enough to tweet him privately and ask if he was referring to me?    Why did I have to respond like an emotional high schooler?   And WHY did I have to make it “okay” by claiming that I was 30?  How does responding to something like this make me “30”?

I was mortified and it wasn’t because of WHO I got into with, it’s HOW I responded.  I am always ready for a fight.  Why do I feel like I constantly have to be ON GUARD?

So, by the end of the night, after I beat myself up mercilessly, I finally realized that I’ve got to THINK about it before I DO it.   Meaning, I’ve got to think about what my reaction should be.  I can’t be like the 20-something-year old who made decisions and responded emotionally.   If I’m going to BE 30, I am going to have to start CHOOSING like I’m 30.

I’m excited about 30…..but I can already tell this is going to be a buttface of a ride.