Election Day, 2018

Maybe I am such a nasty woman,

because I believe that we all deserve to feel safe living our lives to the fullest,

regardless of race or gender identity.

Because I believe that we all deserve equal opportunities,

regardless of what kind of family you were born into.

Because I believe that we all should have the right to marry whomever we want,

regardless of what they identify as.

Because I believe in a woman’s right to choose,

no matter what the circumstances are.

Because I’ve witness firsthand the effects of toxic masculinity,

and the double standards applied to women.

This nasty woman will take a stand,

because my whiteness makes it easier than some to do so.

This nasty woman will fight.

And most importantly,

this nasty woman will vote.

Part two.

I’d ripped you out from under my skin,
purged myself of every ounce,
every drop of what I felt for you.
The cravings had finally stopped,
my heart no longer hurt,
and your memory was fading.
But here I am,
with wide amber eyes,
right back at the beginning.
Another taste of being understood,
of talking in circles,
and making perfect sense.
Another taste of your thick sarcasm accent,
paralyzing eyes,
and thoughtful wit.
My soul has been reignited,
but I can’t help but wonder,
how long until you leave again?

If you’re my worst addiction, then this relapse might kill me.

Single and Fabulous. Exclamation Point.

I keep having these moments where the actions of others, or the lives they chose to live, stop me in my tracks and make me question what I’m doing.

It’s mostly guys I used to date, finding their way into my timelines and forcing me to notice that they’re married. Or living with their girlfriend. Or engaged. And these are the guys that I’ve filed into the category of “Ugh, I can’t believe that chapter of my life actually happened,” and yet my stomach turns a little, because if they’ve found their happiness, I can’t help but wonder why I haven’t found mine.

It’s a twinge of self-doubt that makes me put social media down and keep going. I know realistically, I’m not exactly out of time. I’m twenty-six. I’m so young. I know that. But it’s hard to not feel the pressure when you are surrounded by happy people with their happy spouse or fiancé buying their happy house, and it makes me look at my life like I’ve somehow screwed everything up.

When in reality, I have never been this happy, ever. I love my job. I just got back from four days in NYC for work that was an absolute dream (see last post) and I know that my career is just going to grow from here. I also know that even if I did meet someone who could potentially “be the one,” I’m not entirely sure I could give them my full attention right now. I’m not sure I’m capable of giving someone my full attention, and even if I could, I don’t think I’d like myself that way.

I had a lot of good talks in NYC over bottles of wine with my boss, a woman eighteen years my senior, about relationships and what I’m looking for, and she suggested I stop dating men in their twenties because I’m already ahead of them. She told me I’m too mature for twenty-six, and while that’s not a bad thing, men in their twenties are probably just going to disappoint me with their immaturity. She’s right, I am really over the idea of just “hanging out” with someone. And guys my age don’t seem to grasp that there is a difference between dating and being in a relationship. Although the couple of guys I’ve gone out with in their thirties haven’t exactly been what I was looking for either.

I just don’t think it’s my time yet. I’ve always pictured myself getting married in my thirties, and I still have three and a half years until I hit the beginning of that decade. I just hate that I occasionally feel like something is wrong with me, but on the flip side, you couldn’t pay me to be married right now. I’m having way too much damn fun building my own life. I just need to find a guy who’s doing the same.

So this is what I keep telling myself in these moments:

You do you. Stick to your guns. And if you occasionally have a meltdown about dying alone, then so be it. Freak out, get it out of your system, and then pick yourself up and get back to business, because this ladder that you’re climbing isn’t going to climb itself.

NYC.

I had been a mess of anxiety leading up to the trip. This was all about work, and packing the day before sent me into a spiral. I’d purchased one great blazer, the most expensive piece of clothing I owned, and it was going with me, but the rest was just part of my everyday rotation. None of it felt good enough for New York. None of it was chic enough or special enough. It wasn’t Forever 21 by any means, but in my mind, where I was going, it might as well have been.

I somehow managed to pack a decent amount of clothes. Outfits were perfectly planned. Everything was folded neatly and tucked away in the suitcase, ready to be pulled out in an entirely different timezone. I didn’t think I would sleep. I laid in bed and thought about what this trip COULD be like. The voice in my head continued to go on and on about how I’m not worthy of the city I was going to. I had no idea what to expect so my anxiety ran wild.

After about maybe four hours of sleep, I woke up to my Lady Gaga alarm tone. It was the beginning of the song “Applause,” and I stared at my ceiling for a minute while it played, and it hit me.

I’m going to New York City today.

I actually felt the anxiety melt away from my body. I got up, showered, finished packing, called an uber, locked my front door, and didn’t look back.

Once the plane took off, I shuffled through my cheesy playlist of New York related songs (I’m fully convinced that if you don’t listen to Empire State of Mind at least once on a NYC trip, you didn’t do it right) and was glued to the window. As the descent into LaGuardia began, I basically had my forehead pressed to the window, waiting patiently for a glimpse of Manhattan to come into view.

When it finally did, I got chills. I could make out the Statue of Liberty. There’s something about seeing insanely famous landmarks in person that just gives you chills. And I was in an airplane. I couldn’t help but think about what Lady Liberty stood for, and who our country was currently being led by.

We landed. My boss was in first class, and she waited for me to finally get out of coach, and we were off power-walking to the baggage claim while discussing the game plan for the day. She’d warned me: as soon as we got off the plane, it was show time. And she had been right. We had a lot of boxes to check for the day and a short amount of time to do it. I found my silver luggage bag and helped her with her Louis Vuitton bags. We loaded ourselves into a cab and headed to The Palace.

I’d had my head in the clouds since Manhattan had come into view, but let me tell you, that cab ride woke me up. Traffic lanes mean nothing in NYC. If there are two marked lanes, but three cars can fit across, then three cars are going to fit. It was terrifying and exhilarating. I could have stuck my arm out the window and touched the vehicle next to me. I’m convinced none of these people passed a legitimate drivers test, but it was so classic New York that I couldn’t even be upset. It was the perfect welcome to the city.

The Palace is stunning. I was a diehard Gossip Girl fan as a teenager so stepping into that iconic courtyard was a very cool feeling, and of course it’s right across the street from St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Midtown is just… awesome. I don’t know how else to describe it.

The four days that followed were a complete whirlwind that you couldn’t pay me to forget. I have never worked so hard, and then turned around and gone out for dinner or drinks or just to explore a city that never sleeps. I wasn’t ever tired. I’m a girl that enjoys her solid eight hours of sleep during the normal week, but somehow I managed to not only exist on four hours of sleep, but I thrived. I was on my A game at work, made sure to see one of my best college friends who recently moved to NYC, dressed fabulous (with that B game wardrobe of mine) for dinner or drinks and networked my ass off.  The day I had the most free time, I walked over nine miles, and then got cleaned up, threw on high heels and went to dinner downtown. I met people so high up in my company that if they ever remembered my name, it would change my life.

It was like something out of a movie.

‘Oh we’re meeting X from Z company for drinks tonight’

And we did, and we’d order a bottle of wine and someone would swipe a corporate card because it was technically business and we’d sit and discuss said business.  It was the sort of thing that I always thought would be kind of boring but it wasn’t. It wasn’t at all. I was engaged and even when I was just listening, I was doing my best to absorb every bit of information about this industry that I could, because it was only going to help me in the future. I felt, and still currently feel, like I am standing on the beginning steps of a very promising career climb.

New York was a dream, start to finish. My mom made the comment that the photo of me (see below) on the steps of the Met is her new favorite photo because I look so truly happy. I know that smile. I know how it feels on my face. That’s the genuine one. The one where I’m so overwhelmed with happiness that it might actually physically pour out of me. I felt like that the entire trip. It was an absolute dream. 

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It was an exhausting dream that left me dozing off against the window on the flight from LaGuardia back to STL, but it was a dream nonetheless. I’m grateful that I was able to go and be a part of it, and I’m truly grateful for where I am right now. I love my job. I wake up every morning and I’m excited to go to work.  Everyone told me that I should enjoy college while it lasts because the real world sucks, and I’d just like to say, No, it doesn’t. It’s so much better.

Cannot wait to go back to NYC in a couple months. I’m completely head over heels in love with that city. The biggest question we kept asking each other was if we would ever live there, and I finally decided my answer. I wouldn’t just move there to move there. I wouldn’t live there with four roommates and no closet space and no AC and $1500 rent. But for the right promotion… a true career changing position?

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Back in February, I wrote one of my personal favorite pieces that I’ve ever written, and I never shared it. I wrote a series about a specific encounter (I.e. breakup) and I loved them all. They all flowed right out of me and it was so cathartic. But I didn’t share them because the ex was still in my friend circle and I didn’t want to cause drama. Our mutual friends didn’t need to know how ugly it got between us, and we were trying to stay friendly.

Our friendship recently ended, and although I’m not proud of the things I said (when are you ever proud of telling someone they can fuck right off?), I realized that I can now share this and be proud of it. I haven’t been writing a lot of poetry lately so it was disappointing to finally have new material that I liked and yet I was afraid to share.

Recently stumbled across that famous quote by Anne Lamott:

“You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better.”

So while I’m not trying to cause more drama by sharing this, I am no longer afraid, and I want to share my work. Enjoy.

Moment of Humility.

I avoid dating because while I have become pretty good at managing my mind in normal single life, I have always been afraid that I’m not quite ready to let someone in again, and that trying to do that before I’m ready would unleash some old behavior.

And hey, I was right.

I don’t trust men. Chalk it up to daddy issues, blame it on the fact that almost all of my serious relationships have been extremely manipulative, it doesn’t matter. I don’t trust men. I also have a tendency to get paranoid when I’m not grounded.

I like to have the power. So I walk into relationships with men that I know are way more into me than I am to them. I never have to really open up, they just look at me with gleaming eyes and I get to stay safe, fully able to walk away unscathed if I decide that I’m bored.

And I always get bored. Because I’m just not that into them. The men that I fall head over heels for never want me. So I settle with the ones that do but I wind up bored or annoyed or bored and annoyed because I don’t view them as an equal partner.

“Why even date them?” is the logical question to ask.

Because I convince myself that I’m interested. Because I’m lonely. Maybe there is an inkling of attraction there. But I’m an all or nothing kind of person, and when things are right for me I’m 100% in and know to my core that it’s the right decision. If I’m “not sure” or “trying to figure it out,” then it’s not for me.

So I either talk myself into going out with someone I know is very interested in me or I let myself be talked into it by someone trying to set me up. Neither situation ever turns out well for the guy.

This is my dating pattern. I’m fully aware of it.

I’m sorry to all the guys that have been a victim of this. Y’all should start a club or something. I recently realized every single one of these relationships looked exactly the same, down to the personalities of the guys involved also being super similar.

I’m forcing myself to be hyper aware of it because I’m going to try my best to not do this again to someone. My next relationship is going to be with someone I truly care about and know I want to be with, and if that means there’s a decent chance that I could be truly heartbroken by it, then so what. At least I’ll know it’s genuine.

Cannonball.

I’m holding myself accountable to keep writing. Especially when my last post was about how I want to write my way out of this slump I’ve been in and then I go a week without writing at all. So we’re off to a great start.

I lifted today for the first time in awhile!! I made it to the gym on Monday morning and I was so exhausted and still somewhat depressed that I just did some cardio, but hey, it’s better than nothing. Today I was just feeling it. The temperature finally dropped a bit, and this morning it was 75 so my dog and I went for a two mile power walk. It was great. We almost kept going for another mile but people were beginning to take advantage of the cooler weather and do yard work, and the fresh cut grass smell was really hitting me hard. I cleaned up the kitchen, did some dishes, ate lunch, lounged around for a bit, and then finally got restless enough to go hit the gym.

I am weak AF. Again. But it’s okay! I’ll get it back. It’s not like it’s permanently gone. My body is naturally really athletic so the nice thing is that if I’m just consistent then I can build strength pretty quickly. Plus it just feels so goooood.

I ended with abs and I literally just laid on my mat for a good two minutes before I got up, and the biggest smile was on my face. I love working out. I love lifting.

I’ve been at a crossroads lately at work. Another new opportunity presented itself to me.

I haven’t even been with this company for a year yet. I’m almost there, I started on August 1st.

On March 5th, I moved into my current role that’s a pretty boring desk job that I’m already kind of over.

And recently I was offered yet another move within the company.

It scared me. When I’m mentally in a good place, I love constant change. It’s thrilling to me. I lean into it and just see where it takes me. That’s how I wound up in Saint Louis. Something was calling me to this city and instead of questioning it, I just went for it.

But I haven’t been in the best mental space lately. So this new opportunity, this new change, scared the shit out of me. I’m terrified of disappointing people. This is something I’ve never done before, what if I’m not good at it?

I turned it down at first, and about a week later I realized that was a mistake. Lucky for me, the offer was made by a woman who fully understands that sometimes you just need a little more time to think.

I’m going for it. Once again, this newness is calling to me. There’s something in this decision that I honestly feel like I am supposed to do. Plus there’s a slight pay bump, which is always nice.

I think deep down, we always know what is right for us and what isn’t. The trick is just not letting other people or our own fears and insecurities get in the way of that.

On top of all of this, I’ve spent the majority of my previous weekends doing nothing. I got an offer to go out tonight with some friends, and I’m going. It’ll be fun. I need some fun in my life.

Lean into the new. Forget wading into the pool from the steps, just do a motherfucking cannonball in the deep end.