Kate Spade.

She is quick and curious and playful and strong. She is a voracious reader and a fantastic dancer. She saves old snapshots and loses her umbrella. Her emails pile up but she never forgets to call her grandmother. She has 7 dollars in change at the bottom of her handbag.

Kate Spade

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He’s Just Not That Into You.

Girls are taught a lot of stuff growing up. If a guy punches you he likes you. Never try to trim your own bangs and someday you will meet a wonderful guy and get your very own happy ending. Every movie we see, every story we’re told implores us to wait for it, the third act twist, the unexpected declaration of love, the exception to the rule. But sometimes we’re so focused on finding our happy ending we don’t learn how to read the signs. How to tell from the ones who want us and the ones who don’t, the ones who will stay and the ones who will leave. And maybe a happy ending doesn’t include a guy, maybe… it’s you, on your own, picking up the pieces and starting over, freeing yourself up for something better in the future. Maybe the happy ending is… just… moving on. Or maybe the happy ending is this, knowing after all the unreturned phone calls, broken-hearts, through the blunders and misread signals, through all the pain and embarrassment you never gave up hope.

Scabs

This post is going to be gross because apparently I’m a gross human being. Okay, that’s not true. Wounds just don’t bother me. Growing up, I was always that kid who was fascinated by the healing process. It was like “Oh, hey I cut my leg open but this really awesome and gross scab is going to form.” Rarely would I actually let the scab do its job and heal the wound. I’d always have to pick at it. Even though it hurt, I still picked at it. Sometimes because it was itchy, sometimes just because I was so amazed that my body was healing itself, sometimes just for the heck of it. Even though I heard over and over “It’s going to scar if you don’t leave it alone”, I still messed with it. Then I got older and here I am today: somewhat coordinated, not involved in contact sports anymore, not up on pointe ruining my feet, not running with scissors (I never did that). Truthfully the only injury I sustain anymore is the occasional blister from a fabulous pair of shoes, but the whole scab thing still fascinates me. I think what fascinates me the most about it is that it is a brilliant metaphor for emotional pain. (Just go with it). Over the past month, I was dealt a pretty painful wound and it was raw and hurt so bad I didn’t think I could stand it. Then thanks to some very good friends, I was forced to go out and not dwell at it, so a little scab formed over the open wound on my metaphoric heart. As the days went on, I could feel myself getting better. I knew it would take a long time to fully recover, but I was happy and I didn’t expect that to happen for months. The scab got tougher. It was doing it’s job. Now it only really hurts when I go looking for reasons to be sad. When I pick at it. So I sincerely hope I’ve learned something over the years. That scars form if you pick at scabs and it usually hurts a lot worse when you knock the whole thing off and have to start all over again.

I apologize for talking about gross scabs, but I can already tell I’m going to want to compare something to a bruise, and if you know me, you know how much bruises fascinate me. Have a fabulous Friday.

Elizabeth Bishop.

The art of losing isn’t hard to master;
so many things seem filled with the intent
to be lost that their loss is no disaster,

Lose something every day. Accept the fluster
of lost door keys, the hour badly spent.
The art of losing isn’t hard to master.

Then practice losing farther, losing faster:
places, and names, and where it was you meant
to travel. None of these will bring disaster.

I lost my mother’s watch. And look! my last, or
next-to-last, of three beloved houses went.
The art of losing isn’t hard to master.

I lost two cities, lovely ones. And, vaster,
some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent.
I miss them, but it wasn’t a disaster.

— Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture
I love) I shan’t have lied. It’s evident
the art of losing’s not too hard to master
though it may look like (Write it!) a disaster.

Best friends.

Do you have people in your life that you constantly take for granted? It’s not like you mean to take them for granted, but they are always there for you so you kind of forget to appreciate them? I do. All of the time. My Meme and Papa are two that this happens to way more than it should. It really hit me over Thanksgiving when my sister and I were arguing over who should get one of my Papa’s watches. We stumbled on the watch he wore when he was in the Army in the 50’s. While we were fighting over it (it fit my wrist perfectly), I realized there are so many things I don’t know about my grandparents. Then one of my grandmother’s best friends died. Which is a devastating blow to begin with, but then I realized another one of her best friends died this year. And her sister. So if you think about it, my grandmother has lost three major players in her life. Three relationships she has had for 60+ years. Can you even imagine knowing and loving someone for that long? To top it all off, when I talked to her about it she said “I can’t even remember having one cross word with her and even if I don’t want to lose her, I’m glad she’s not suffering.” Wow. I would not have that reaction.  I would have been angry and bitter, but I guess my grandmother is the definition of aging with grace and poise.

Hearing her talk about it and thinking about how much she’s been through this year alone, it made me realize that I want to be the kind of person who has friendships that last my entire life. I want to value people that much; to care for them through everything. I guess I am learning who I want to be. There’s always silver lining in the pain. There’s always a reason to have hope.

What type of person do you want to be?

Advice.

Advice is a funny little thing. Personally, I’ll ask for advice and won’t stop asking people until I get the answer I really want to hear. Do you do that? It’s bizarre because I always ask the people closest to me first; the ones who would be the most honest with me. When they tell me something I don’t want to hear, I go to the next group of people. I spread the circle out wider and wider until finally someone says what I really want to do in my gut. That’s not always the best idea. I mean sometimes my gut makes poor decisions. For example, texting someone in the middle of the night or wearing four inch heels to a groundbreaking ceremony after it’s rained for two days. So it really makes me wonder why I keep seeking out the advice I want to hear instead of the advice that is actually good for me. Why do I constantly put myself in the position of saying “I should have taken your advice, but I didn’t”?

The biggest example of this would be my current situation. Within the span of six months, I graduated college, took a job, and moved out of my parent’s house. (Which if you have done this, I applaud you). At the time I was dating someone and while looking for places to live, I let that relationship sway where I ultimately ended up. I cleverly disguised it by saying that I was in a crunch and really needed to a place to live so I could start my job, but let’s be real. I picked up my life and moved for a boy. Now that move was fantastic until that boy no longer wanted to be with me. Then it got even worse because every friendship I had formed in my new home was connected to him and no one has spoken to me since. That’s when I said to myself, “You know, everyone told me not to move somewhere for a guy. I wish I would have listened.” Some days I still wish I could rewind things and do it differently, but I’ve learned so much.

Putting this into words may make it selfish now, but I did one of the most selfless things you can do for someone. I picked up my entire life, moved away from everyone who knew and loved me, and started over all in the name of love. That’s what love should be about, in my opinion. It should be consuming and inconvenient. It should be passionate and risky. If it’s not, then it’s mediocre at best and there’s too many ordinary things in life. Love should not be one of them.

So while sometimes I think “Man, I wish I would have listened”, I really have to thank my current situation. This brought me out of my comfort zone and showed me that while people might think I’m weak, I am one of the strongest people I know. There’s not many people I know who gave up everything they knew, got their heart broken, and came out stronger because of it. Maybe there’s something my gut knows that I don’t. Maybe it knows what will build character and endurance. And for all of those silly dumb moments, maybe it just knows what’s going to make me laugh when I look back on my life years from now.

Martha Washington

I am still determined to be cheerful and happy, in whatever situation I may be; for I have also learned from experience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances.

Little Things 

This afternoon a friend of mine texted me a link to a YouTube video. It was a video of a contestant on The X Factor singing Something by The Beatles. Holy cow, it was amazing. I was more blown away by the fact that this friend had remembered it was my favorite Beatles song and thought to share it with me. Things like that warm my heart. I probably mentioned I liked that song once or twice, but they remembered. Lately I’ve been so wrapped up in trying to remember what everyone else likes that I’ve forgotten what it feels like to have someone remember the little things that I like. I’ve been too consumed with making others happy that I really haven’t made a point to demand time and attention for myself. So today I made time to listen to a rising star sing my favorite Beatles song, what have you done for yourself today?

Top Ten: Things Said in the Past Month

1. “I’ve always known there was more with you. You’re always more and there always is more when it comes to you. If others can’t see it, then I feel sorry for them. I know you and I’m always excited and impressed when you continually prove that you’re more.”

2. “You are so smart and you are beautiful. You take charge. You call me out on my s**”t and make me own up to it, and I respect that.”

3. “Most importantly keep being Leah. Don’t let this make you bitter and resentful. Those things aren’t becoming of who you are. There are a lot of us who silently rely on you to be you.”

4. “Just set the alarm off at Macy’s and had all the ladies hitting on me.”

5. “You are loved more than you know.”

6. “Even hurt can be beautiful.”

7. “You’re not going out in that. Not in a t-shirt.”

8. “There was never any reason to not be yourself. Who you are is so otherworldly and wonderful. And you hide it whenever you mask yourself.”

9. “The true phoenix from this fire is you.”

10. “Get in the left lane. The left lane. Now.”

 

I’m so grateful for the people in my life.

Romans.

More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.

Romans 5:3-5