Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Charlie Brown would be Ashamed

I love Christmas, and hate it at the same time.  The crowded malls and shopping centers, the traffic, ugh--spare me, please.  I also don't like the mentality we have about Christmas.  All the buying and spending.  Do we really need gifts in first world America?  Is it really necessary, with all that we already have?

I love buying gifts.  I love acing it, and getting exactly what someone else wanted.  I enjoy this quite thoroughly.    If I didn't get any gifts this year, it would be okay by me.  Just let me write a check for someone who is less fortunate.  That's the most important part of Christmas, is it not?  What's the point in buying?  What's the point in spending vast amounts of money on things that don't last?  There is none.

I love fashion magazines.  The pages inside interest me, because--yes--I like clothes.  A little bit--okay, maybe a lot.  I really like boots and shoes.  But all the same, even I know that all of the things in my closet will get worn down, go out of fashion, or get eaten by moths.  I don't feel the nagging to buy anything lately.  It just seems like a tremendous waste.

I sponsor a child that lives on the other half of the world.  He runs and plays football (a.k.a. soccer in the rest of the world); he picks beans in his parents' garden.  He has seven other siblings, and his teachers label him "below average" in school.   But the child is ever grateful for my support, and now that he's able to write me in English, I am finding out more about his life.  He never complains, nor does he say that is in need.  He speaks with simplicity and a humble gratitude that is foreign to America and other industrialized countries.  The used and overly baggy clothes that he buys with Christmas money are listed in detail in an end-of-the-year letter he sends me.  He doesn't smile in his photo, but he always sounds optimistic.  He requests that I pray that he passes his exams.  I love him, and I should be more like him.  We all should.

We're are missing out on mounds of miracles and life lessons.  What does the average American live for anyway?   Charlie Brown thought it was bad in the 60s--man, he had no clue.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Word of Sadness

Tristitia means sadness, wretchedness, unhappiness.  Isn't that ironic?  Trista's name means sadness.  I feel weird this holiday season.  It didn't feel like Thanksgiving and it doesn't feel like Christmas is coming.  These days are little more than just that; they are days.  Normal days...shouldn't they be sacred and holy?  Shouldn't they be joyful?

I miss my friend.  It's easier to talk about her these days.  Some days hurt more than others, but I know she wouldn't want me moping around.

I find that family makes the sadness better, that is, until I have to leave.  Then I am so burdened on the road home.  It's family that makes the holidays.  I can't come home for Christmas.  Sigh.  I want them to be near to me.  That would be nice.

I spoke with a woman yesterday who lost her father the Saturday before Thanksgiving.  How sad.  She was crying when she spoke about it.  I hurt for her.  The holidays are so cold without family.  Spaces remain where loved ones used to be.  As I grow older, I know more spaces will appear, seats vacated.  The winter will become colder, and little bit harsher.  It's love that keeps me warm, and I now realize that I rely heavily on my family and friends to give me hope that I don't find easily.  It'll be okay.  I think this moodiness is my cross to carry.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Crying in My Hands

I didn't go to church yesterday morning.  The alarm went off and I felt like death.  Literally.  The windiness that brought the cold front also blew about allergens that kept me up sneezing and coughing all night.  It was worse than usual.  I think to myself that I don't want to spend the rest of my life being as miserable as my allergy-ridden father.  He had to take a shot every day, or every week--I don't remember exactly because I hate shots and wouldn't watch.  He is constantly congested and doesn't sleep well either.  We always joke that we can tell where he is in a crowd by the sound of him clearing his throat, which he does every minute or so.  My mother says that sound is comforting.  To me, it's the sound of misery.

I don't function well without sleep.  I have nightmares, so sleep doesn't come easily to me.  My allergies make it 20 times worse.  From early February's tree pollen to late November's weed pollen, I'm miserable 10 months out of the year.  If it's a warm winter like it was last year, then I'm miserable ALL year long.  Allergies can't compare to cancer, but they contribute to bronchitis (a sickness I struggled with when I was young), asthma, acid re-flux, and a poor immune system in general.  I drink eight to ten glasses of water a day. This keeps my mucus from being super thick, and it makes it a little easier.  I avoid ice cream and milk products, since they do the opposite of water.

Back in high school, I ran four to five miles during ragweed season.  How did I do that again?!  I ran this past weekend, and with the wind blowing everything around, I couldn't breathe.  My legs weren't hurting.  Heck, I wasn't even tired.  I just couldn't breathe.

How did I run two miles in 13 minutes?  With asthma?  I hate getting older.  It's becoming increasingly obvious how hard it is to keep up with things that used to be so easy.

After waking up at noon, I walked into the bathroom and looked at my red eyes.  I started picking at my face, messing with my eye brows--you know--doing all my little ticks.  Then I started crying.  Breck tried to understand why.  For a second I realized everything that I was struggling with--I would be dealing with it the rest of my life.  My OCD, the asthma, allergies, mania and excessive spending.  The weight crushed me.

I always thought I could conquer the things that ruled me in high school--but here I am, still dealing with them.  In fact, the emotional side of me is even more screwed up now then it was then.  I'm working on it--and I guess from what people tell me, I'm better, but I just don't believe it.  You know what I mean?  I feel like I am fooling everyone, and I really am just as bad as I always was.

With my health always in a limbo, my sleep pattern so jacked up...the physical exhaustion just piles on to my emotional mess.  I want to be more than this.  I want to be the girl my husband thinks I am.  I want to be that amazing and carefree--that beautiful.  Casting away all these problems and cares and throwing my  head back in a smile would be wonderful.  It's never that easy.

I hate the cyclic feelings.  I hate that I always end up here.  Tired.  

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Talk, Talk, Talk

Blither, blather, blither, blather.  Just nonsense.  Politicians gab away about what they can and will fix.  Will they live up to the self-created hype?  Probably not.  This election was full of disillusionment.  I am that voter, you know, the one that doesn't feel like her needs are being met.  I am a woman, but I'm not going to force the right of my uterus upon you.  Do certain body parts have rights?  According to Sophia Bush, yes they do, and you better back off of them (#backoffmyuterus).

I am a rape victim, myself.  It's true--I don't believe people, especially men, understand what rape does to an individual's mind and soul.  I also think that you can't make people understand something that has never happened to them.  I can't force anyone to think or feel the way I do.  That being said, I don't believe abortion is an answer to rape or any other means of conception.  Would I gripe at a woman who got an abortion?  No.  Do I deride other people for not believing the way I do?  No.  Do I explain my views and the reasons I believe the things I do?  Occasionally.

This is one of those times.

As a woman in the modern times, I realize that men have better opportunities than us, and possibly they are paid more than us for doing the same jobs.  I--too--see that there are terrible stereotypes that society thinks we should conform to.  Yes, I hate all the sexy ads with scantily clad women who are rail thin.  I hate how the world pressures us into thinking that if we don't fit these stereotypes, we're overweight, out of place, and unworthy of love.  If we don't show enough cleavage, we aren't sexy, and therefore we shouldn't be upset if we can't get a date or if we are left for someone better.  I hate that women aren't taken seriously, but are sometimes portrayed as advancing because of looks or sexual acts with people in places of authority.  "Women aren't as smart as men, therefore they can't possibly have what it takes to lead."  If they're in a position of authority, I have heard people question as to why.  On the other side of this, you have the outcome of the sexual revolution.

I hate that being "sexually active" is the norm.  I hate that girls who choose to remain celibate until marriage are treated like snobbish prudes.  A girl can brag about sex with all the different men (or women) in the world, but the virgin is chagrined into silence.  People find it weird and unhealthy to "suppress" sexual activity or fantasies.  I can see their faces now, frowning and dismissive:  Please don't talk about your views on saving sex for marriage, you naive child.  

Despite the supposed progress of our nation, a woman who does brag or talk about her sexual ventures is still thought of as a whore.  Let's be honest.  But a guy with plenty of scores, no big deal.  He's cool.  Older men can date much younger women.  Yes, that is "normal."  But cougars and older women dating younger men is weird to think about, isn't it?  Even without morality in the equation, gender equality is all kinds of screwed up.  Don't let society fool you.  The way women were looked at fifty years ago still exists, it's just in the back of everyone's mind.  The only difference is that we don't speak of it.

Despite disagreeing with society's definition of what a woman should be, I don't agree with liberal feminists either.  Women want freedom to practice safe sex.  That's fine--none of my business, but then they go to companies and want to force on the them things like birth control, abortion costs and such.  Yeah...that doesn't make sense to me.  If you want the freedom to do things, accept the costs and consequences of said actions.

You do have the freedom to have rampant sex.  You have the freedom to buy birth control or condoms.  Then do it.  Please don't expect someone else to do it for you.  And when you do get knocked up, don't expect your place of work to provide insurance coverage for your day-after pills or whatever other procedure you choose to get done--especially if said company is run by Christian people with Christian values, ex. Hobby Lobby or Mardel.  Same goes for Chick-fil-a.  They reserve the right not to support things like abortion, because that is their belief.

I'm tired of people getting all up in a huff over Christian companies who don't want to except gay marriage or abortion.  I'm tired of Christians being bullied into a corner on these issues.  Yes, I am a woman.  But I think too many women are selfish and want birth control and certain services given to them because they are women.  They feel they are entitled to it.  They excuse murder, but then I hear them accusing politicians who say stupid things about rape.  Yeah, those guys are freakin' idiots.  But don't fool yourselves, ladies.  I highly doubt the millions of babies aborted up until this point were from incidents of rape.  In fact, I would venture to say that very very few of them are from rape victims at all.  Most of them are from selfish women who want to sleep around without a cost to themselves.  Most are probably from teenagers who have no clue what they are doing, and they are afraid.  Don't get me wrong--I don't believe in shunning people who get pregnant out of wedlock.  I don't believe in being hateful to them.  I'm not going to treat people who have had abortions like they are terrible people.  Everyone makes mistakes, but no one seems to see that these mistakes come at such a high cost for the mother and child.  In fact, the cost is very high for our nation in general.  Millions of lives have been wiped away, and do we seriously think we won't be held accountable?

If you are going to play with fire, plan on getting burned.  If you end up with consequences you don't like, accept responsibility.  Don't murder your kid.  And if you plan on murdering your own child, then don't joke yourself into thinking everyone wants to support that.  I don't support your "right" to abortion.  And I'm not sorry about it.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Keep on Smiling

I hate when weekends end.  Yes, that puts me in the 99th percentile of the entire earth, but I felt like saying it anyway.  I love lounging with Breck on the couch, watching TV shows all afternoon. I wanted to be unproductive this weekend.  I was in better spirits yesterday, but I'm depressed today.   I know, I know.  I am depressed everyday.

I hate feeling like a failure. Did I mention that I am the worst about hiding my emotions?

If you know me, you already know that.  I have to remind myself that I am not a slave to them.  It's easy to feel like a caged bird, so suffocated and starved of life.  It's days like this that I keep telling myself to be thankful for my life.  They say count your blessings.  Oh, and smile.

So here's to all my blessings.  I'm shaking off this grim feeling.  It's stupid.  I am independent, so I refuse to let my chemical imbalances control my life.  I refuse to let my circumstances break me.  Strength comes from the hard times and rough patches.  Strength comes from persevering.  My strength comes from knowing that God blesses me, even in my darkest days.  He keeps me pushing.  He doesn't let me sit here and mope, though I really wish I could.  The Invisible Hand pulls me up.

"Why are you down?"

"Well, God, you know I'm tired.  You know I'm a constant failure.  Sometimes I just want to give up.  I can barely keep my eyes open."

"Why are you tired?  What have you been doing that makes you tired?   You know, if you would rely on me then you wouldn't be so worn down."

"I don't know what I'm doing.  I think I'm doing what you want, but I'm not entirely sure."

"Stop thinking you can fix things.  You constantly push yourself to do what you're not made to do.  You're only exhausting yourself.  Try all you want, but you DO know that you're not going anywhere unless I want you to, right?"

"Yes...but where am I supposed to go?  What am I supposed to do?  What if I do too little?  I feel like I'm not doing enough, or I feel like I'm doing something wrong.  There's this constant guilt."

"I died to set you free from guilt.  Why are you letting it run your life?  I'm pretty sure that's my job."

"Yeah, I know...how do I get rid of that?"

"By actually believing I have this entire situation under control.  By seeing that this is my world--my galaxy.  I control your destiny.  Not you."

"Even when I fail?  Even when I'm everything I'm not supposed to be?  What if I'm unprepared?  What happens when I fall?"

"Stop worrying about it.  I'll guide you and help you.  I'll give you everything you need.  Nothing more, nothing less."

So, there's no clue about where this life is heading.  Only God knows.  So, I'm going to keep counting my blessings, in no particular order:

1.  God has given me a wonderful husband who knows all the bad parts of me, but loves me regardless.
2.  My parents and grandparents are men and women of God.  They are still married, despite hardships.
3.  My family is, for the majority, healthy.  I haven't had to deal with the loss of a family member yet.
4.  I have a job that pays well.
5.  This job has given me experience in computer programs like Adobe Creative Suite.  Awesome and relevant.
6.  I am able to connect with people on a deeper level with this job.
7.  I have siblings, and we are close.
8.  I'm not hungry.
9.  I have an abundance of clothing and material wealth.
10.  I am not sick nor do I have a disease.
11.  I have good friends who are there for me.
12.  I live in the US.
13.  I am allowed to practice my religion and speak about it freely.
14.  I belong to a church that preaches the Word of God faithfully.
15.  I have a group of people my age that go to my church, and they are awesome.
16.  I have a college education.
17.  I have a car.
18.  My car is paid off.
19.  I'm paying off my college loans ahead of time.
20.  I have two precious puppies.
21.  I am given enough money to bless and sponsor a child in Uganda.
22.  He reminds me that I have it pretty easy.
23.  No matter what has happened, I have survived it up to today, because of the grace of God.
24.  I am able to pay the bills.
25.  I know how to play the piano, and can write songs of my own...even if no one will ever hear them.
26.  I have access to the internet and countless amounts of information.
27.  I am able to vote for who I want to lead my country.
28.  I am blessed in about a million other ways, too.

 I'm tired today, but I'm going to smile.  Obviously, I have much to smile about.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Talking Rocks

Here I sit,  twisting back and forth--dangling from a long string.  I hate choices...big choices.  I know I must make them, but still, I am unsure of where I should be.  It's not just me, by the way.  It accurately describes much of my generation.

I hate indecisiveness.  So, I will pray and see how it goes.

I still run, and that's a miracle for me.  I do my best to get in shape.  It helps me sleep more and feel better in general.  I love the feeling of being sore the next day.  Even more so, I enjoy running at night--running by the field and its mass of cool air, unlike the air above the slabs of concrete.  Then comes the fragrance of water, and damp dirt.  I relish those smells.  They permeate the air, nearly as good as the scent of a fresh rain.

The earth announces fall with golden, aureate flowers that dot the landscape like brush strokes in a painting, along with quiescent leaves adorned in ruby and gold--the first turning of trees.  As chlorophyll vanishes, the trees enter their deep slumber.

When I leave my warm house and go out into this world of wonderful smells and color, it takes me back to times when I ran in the state meet at Oral Roberts.  The oaks softly shed their leaves, ever so slowly.  My feet crunched on top of them as I ran.

When I run, I don't feel the need to analyze every thought.  Why figure everything out, when I can experience the earth that we hide from?  I'm too caught up in myself, I think.  Just bury me in the sweet smelling soil, perpetually covered by a world of color and life. Let me stay there.

In the country, the Milky Way is so bright.  It lights up all of the sky, illuminating the black of night.  I could lay down and watch the galaxy revolve around some unknown point.  The stars are uncountable.  I miss that about living in the middle of nowhere.   Trees are wonderful, but where I'm from, there's just a vast, open sky.  In the spring, the thunderheads roll in, bringing with them precious rain.  At sunset, they come in the brightest oranges, fading into pinks and purple when the sun goes down.

I know we were made to enjoy these wonderful manifestations.  Are the changing hues and bright flowers for us?  The stars and sky too?  I dare say no.  I believe He created them because He enjoys them.  But we are given a chance to enjoy them, too.  God could have forged the universe and left man out of it.  But He didn't.  I, myself, wonder why He bothered with us sometimes.  We can be petty, selfish and cruel.  We ruin things.  Though humans have the capacity to love, cherish, and grow, we would rather invoke destruction .  Why do we, yes we, mean more to Him than all of creation?  Isn't it unfathomable?  For some reason, we are just a little less than the angels.

I am surrounded by beauty, and yet I wonder about our souls.  If all creation isn't a testimony to a Mind greater than all minds, a deeper Heart with the infinite ability to love, what is?  Happenstance doesn't answer the deeper questions.  He said even the rocks will cry out.

Because of the God I believe in, because I know He created this, all of my problems seem so small.  How else can I testify about Him?  Without Him, I wouldn't have survived.


Friday, October 26, 2012

Do You Keep Getting Up When You're Kicked Down?

I'm tired tonight.  Breck has tickets to see The Flaming Lips, but I'm too tired and the thought of the freezing cold wind that will be blowing at the outside arena isn't helping either.  I don't want to go anywhere.  In the face of inevitable uncertainty, I just want to hide under a rock.

So my employment situation isn't as secure as I thought.  I have a month to get my sales up.  Despite the fact we don't advertise at all, I have been trying to drum up business.  It's hard to do when you are on your own. I can tell people think I have a cushy job in a nice chair, just sitting here.  But it's not that easy trying to force people to buy into your product.  Voice mails, telephone calls, failed projects, passing out fliers at colleges...this is getting exhausting.  Add to that calling public schools and business associations--I'm just tired of getting turned down, or being forwarded to someone who doesn't answer.  Maybe it wasn't the greatest business idea for Oklahoma, or maybe it's just not in the right part of town.  I resent the fact that it's all on my shoulders.  If I knew that pushing for sales was going to be this hard, then I wouldn't have applied.  I wanted a job that didn't require sales/marketing.  I love formatting and designing books--don't get me wrong.  I love that part.  But it's very discouraging to see how this is all turning out, when I'm not sure where to go next or how to make it work.

We're supposed to go to some Halloween party later tonight too.  I don't really want to see anyone.  I just want to disappear for a while in the solitude of a warm blanket on a couch and watch The Office.  Is that awful of me?  

Friday, October 19, 2012

Reaching Across the Rift

Do you sometimes see people, people you don't even know, and wonder if you could glimpse into their lives?  Oh, to be a fly on the wall...

Yesterday evening, I sat outside after a good run.  I find that my most spiritual experiences usually happen when I'm running.  I see people driving, taking out the trash, and there's others being dropped off, maybe at a friend's house?  I watch them while I'm running, and I think to myself, "God, how should I reach these people?  Who do you want me to see or speak to?"  I pray for them.  I pray that God would touch their lives somehow, whether through me or someone else.  It all starts at square one...prayer.

While jogging and wheezing (yeah, ragweed kicks my butt this time of year), I think about how far our nation is from God.  How much we hate Him and push Him away.  We're afraid of what He could do in us.  He could change everything, and doing that would be painful.  Or He could put us in places that we don't think we should be; He could keep us from having that job, getting that house, or doing what we believe we were born to do.

While running, I realize that I could be in this apartment complex for the rest of my life, if that's where He wants me.  We're called to stop thinking of ourselves, but to think of Him first, and then others.  I pray for forgiveness for my shortcomings, for my stupidity.  I pray for forgiveness for us American Christians.  We aren't where we need to be.  We're too connected to our money and our success.  Maybe we're too connected to our pride, our families, but most of all, our comfort.

It's not going to be comfortable.  Loving the needy and difficult people in the world...yeah, that's hard.  In my complex, I see them everyday.  A lot of them walk to work nearby, McDonald's or Sonic.  They have little children who don't have their daddies.  They are older people, alone and shut up in their apartments.  They are blind, mentally handicapped...most of them are hurting.  Many of them are living for the weekend.

It hurts when I step outside of myself to see them.  I mean to REALLY see them.  I sat in the grass, and watched a girl roller-blade down the drive.  People were coming in and out of doors.  I remember thinking that if I could,  I would dissolve into the air, invisible and watch them forever.  Maybe I could intervene when I should...if I could shed this body for a few hours, and float in the cool to see them more, I would.  The moist air was intoxicating, enough to bring tears to my eyes.  I could see how much He loves them, and how much I've fallen short in loving them.  God, forgive me.

I soaked it all in, got up, and walked back to my home, where my husband and dogs were napping on the couch. All I could think was: Thank You God, for loving me...for loving us.  But more than anything, thank You for still speaking to me in the quietness of the night.  Thank You for Your still small voice, and making me be still enough to hear it.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Oh, oh...Here We Go!

So, I'm out of birth control.  And we're going to see what happens.  I used to be scared to death of even the thought of children--well me having children.  I kept seeing myself as a terrible mother; the thought of Breck and I not being ready dominated my thoughts on the subject.  But, it's like everyone says...is anyone ever ready?

We have two dogs, but they are relatively easy to take care of.  I work full-time, Breck is in school and will be for the next three and a half years.  What are we going to do money-wise?  I don't know.  How about time-wise?  I have no clue.  Daycare?  Jeez louise, that crap is expensive.  Where will we live then?  Ummm...yeah.

I start to wind myself up with all of these questions.  But what can I do about them?  Nothing for now.  That's where God must come in.  He needs to show up for those things.  My parents had four of us, and there wasn't always a lot of money, but we made it.  I don't remember feeling like we didn't have much.  Actually, I felt like we were well taken care of.  I have to remember that God will take care of us, like He did when I was younger.  He has up until this point.  Why would He stop now and leave us hanging?

Perfect love casts out all fear.  I should love Him and trust Him so much that there is no fear.  Just faith.  I'm learning how to do that.  It's hard for a girl that has a planner with appointments months and months away.  But I need to let Him drive my life.  I don't even know if I should have been taking birth control.  Why do we have to be in control of everything?  Why do I think my plans will work out?  They never do when I don't pray about them.  The point is, He should be leading me.  He should be the calming Peace that stills me.  Lord help me.  It will definitely be hard, but I admit, it's thrilling to let go of yet another part of my life and let Him decide.

So, with the possibility of becoming pregnant in the next few months, I'm not drinking caffeine, trying to eat healthy, and drinking tons of water.  I've been running, and I don't know if I should still be doing that.  I don't think many people read this, but if you have any tips, let me know.  I don't know what the heck I'm doing.  :)

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

My Hair is Always a Mess

I have this thing called trichotillomania, or hair pulling.  It resides along with my OCD/bipolar/borderline personality disorder.  YEAH, I'm not sure if I'm all of those.  In fact, I know I have trichotillomania/OCD, but I highly doubt I have bipolar, but rather BPD.

Anyway, we won't go into my lists of diagnoses.  Hair pulling is something I have done since the age of 13.  I remember plucking out my eyelashes and eyebrows in junior high.  I spent hours in front of the mirror, usually until 2 or 3 in the morning, pulling out my eyelashes and eyebrow hairs.  I wanted them to be balanced, and they wouldn't be; and even if they were, I wouldn't see it for my neurotic, slanted perception of myself.  At certain points, I had no eyebrows or eyelashes.  My grandmother used to tell me that they wouldn't grow back, and I told her that wasn't true-- I knew because I had been pulling them out for several years.  They usually grew back within a month at first, then two or three months after constantly pulling them out.

Even when I was watching TV, I would sit and pull out my eyelashes.  I also did this while reading.  It relieved my stress, and it angered me when anyone pointed it out or told me to stop.  I obsessed over hair, and yet the thought of it grossed me out.  I hated hair.

This intense hatred of hair started long ago, when I was little.  While taking baths, my mother's hair would blanket the tub.  It floated around in the bath, covering my arms and legs.  It freaked me out.  My poor mother couldn't help it.  She has thick, thick wiry hair.  She loses massive amounts of it, I mean, complete handfuls in a day.  I can't blame her at all, because my hair is the same way.  I shed like a dog.

But, since her hair freaked me out when I was little, I make sure my hair is out of the shower and bath.  I don't want it on the sink.  I don't want it anywhere.  Yuck.  Hair is so gross.

I would love to not even have hair.  How wonderful would that be.

So, yes, I am crazy.  Seriously weird and crazy.  I'm so lucky I married a German boy with no body hair.  I thank God every day for that.   

Saturday, September 22, 2012

The Quiet Peace

I haven't written in quite a while.  For once,  busyness isn't the only reason.  I am also more at peace than I have been in my whole entire life; it's the kind of peace that drowns me and swallows me up whole.  I'm glad to have such a wonderful husband, and I'm happy with my job.  I'm happy with life, generally.  Every once in a while, I have a bout of depression, but it's been good lately.

I don't really know how to deal with the feeling of peace.  It's strange, yet pleasant.  I sit at home on the couch next to my husband, with my head on his shoulder.  I think in anger and stress I was missing out on life and so many other great things.  Breck's childish humor, cooking food without freaking out about how it looks or tastes, taking care of our crazy dogs... no matter what is going on, lately I can feel God's grace.  I don't have to plan everything.  I don't have to have the strength to make it through everyday.  That would be just me trying to do it all myself.  In the fight to be independent and handle my own problems, I forfeited marvelous grace.  I crumbled under the weight of all my problems and life itself.  I became so weak.  But there's something wonderful about knowing how weak I am, and that has taken the burden off of my shoulders.  It's such a wondrous feeling.

I love my life.  I love that I can trust Someone to handle my life for me.  I'm nothing but a conduit, and I need to stop letting myself get in the way of God's grace.  His grace heals everything I can't.  It carries me through things that I can't change, and yet in His power, it all changes.  I think mountains are moving now.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

The Girl Without a Head

As I was sitting and watching the news last night, a story came on about a 19-year-old girl from Bethany, OK.  She was murdered by her pimps who had forced her into a prostitution.  She was beheaded, cut into two pieces, and had her limbs dismembered.  Her torturous killing was taped and the pimps forced the other sex slaves to watch it, so they would know to never step out of line.

Anger overcame me, that and a wave of sickness.  I had to go to the bathroom...I locked myself in there just so I could breathe.  Hatred became me.  Such a strong, fierce hatred.  I could see myself crushing these mens' balls, then cutting them off and feeding their own crushed testicles to them.  After that I would cut off all their fingers and toes, and then I would cut out their wretched hearts with a dull, rusty blade, that is if they had any.  I'm still angry.  My own situation was bad enough.  When I saw the man who raped me a year or two ago at BWW's, it was everything I could do not to pull out my pocket knife and lash into him.  I had to call my parents...I remember, I was screaming.  You can't even verbalize the anger...there's no way to say how it feels to hate someone so much that you would take life in prison just to see them die, and not just die, but a die terrible death.  A quick death would be too good for them.

I remembered the feeling yesterday.  It was strong as the times when my assailant would come and hug me at school, because he thought the drugs he put in my drink had wiped my memory of that night. Yeah, right asshole.  I woke up right in the middle of it.  He told me that I had gotten drunk and he was taking care of me.  Only I hadn't drank any alcohol.  Idiot.  And even if I had, I wouldn't have blacked out 30 minutes later from drinking, thanks.

That poor girl.  All those poor girls.  No one deserves that...except rapists and murders.  I know Jesus loves them, but I don't.  God forgive me, but that's something that I will try to learn, and it will take all my life to forgive men like these.  I can't imagine how her family feels.  How would you feel if you knew your daughter died, not only before her time, but in gruesome torture?   My blood boils at the thought.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

I'm Still Hung Up

I haven't written in a week.  Probably because I've been busy.  And once again, I'm damming up my emotions.  I'm going to tip-toe around them, because how else can I live?  Some days it's better to live in denial after trying to soak up everything for so long.

When the dust settles, I see that my life is changing so quickly.  Change is a monster that I dread so.  I need stability.  I have a doctor's appointment tomorrow to see if medicine will give that stability.  I hate how overly medicated we've become as a society, and here I am considering leveling out my emotions.  Though these emotions run me at times, and I know I shouldn't let them, they also make me so much more creative and grateful for the moments of happiness.  I'm like the desert when a drizzling rain comes.  I swallow that happiness and gulp it down.  I experience it so much fuller.  I'm certain that on my happiest days, I'm happier and more content than anyone else on this earth.  I can't accurately portray that, though.  I'm convinced that my life is a cycling wheel that spins and spins.  It's dizzying and intoxicating.  When it all stops, when all the spinning is over, what will I do then? 

Monday, August 6, 2012

Fighting the Dog Days

I'm tired today.  Well, I'm tired every day, actually.  I started some new medication that's supposed to even out my newly diagnosed bipolar, but I don't think I'm bipolar.  Besides, the guy diagnosed me after only 30 minutes.  How could he know that after only 30 minutes?

I went to bed at 11 p.m. last night, woke up at 9 a.m.  I'm still dragging.  Ugh.  I hate this cloudy feeling.  I'm sooooo tired.

The heat here is thick.  It makes me not sleep very well.  I went and saw my grandparents this past weekend.  My grandfather has chest pains.  My grandmother's memory is slipping.  It's so strange watching them grow older, frailer.  Time keeps running on, and as I sat in their living room with them, I was trying so hard to hold on.  You might as well try grasping the air or holding the wind...it just flows right on through your fingers with little regard to anyone.  Time isn't biased, and it doesn't have an agenda.

Time is the only absolute thing in this world.  It's the only thing that doesn't change.   The seconds, the minutes, the hours, they all rush along in a perfectly straight line.  They move, never jolting out of place, flowing linearly outward toward the great beyond.  Only memories remain in our finite minds.  I keep grasping for the invisible.  I'm not ready for this part yet, can we please wait?  Time, please wait for me, just a few minutes.  Let me catch my breath.  Quit taking people from me.  I see your claws in them, and yes, it's only a matter of time...how ironic.  We never know when our day will come.  For some people, the end is more expected, but I don't think that makes death any easier.  And it isn't just a matter of death, it's a matter of losing innocence, losing health, losing friends to miles and spaces in between.  That's what time does; it takes away.  It doesn't give anything back, it just keeps on taking.

It's like an equation.  People all have their sums of days, more like their sums of life.  Certain sums are larger than others.  For some reason, I always feel like mine will be short.  No, I'm not talking about suicide.  I'm talking about my health, physically and mentally.  I feel like my days will be cut short,  but it's not a frightening thing.  All these pluses and minuses--there just seems to be more deductions than I think there should be.  When will I arrive at zero when there's nothing left?

Friday, August 3, 2012

Cycling Trivialities

"Who cares in a hundred years from now?"

What in this life is worth dying for?  I don't know if people in American society would die for much of anything.  The world we live in is shellacked with bright colors, covering the lifeless grey.  We fake happiness to ourselves and friends, we buy new cars every two or three years.  We jet-set to far away lands, which--strangely enough--shrink smaller every day with new technological cultivation on the horizon.  TVs, iPads, and Xboxes entertain our shallow, apathetic minds.  I wonder, do we ever venture past the boundaries of the modern every day hum-drum, the busy bustling that occupies our minds?  Do we sit still long enough to allow things to shift and unsettle, revealing the need for more?

What is worth standing up for?  What is worth the sacrifice?  Do we even know what sacrifice is?

It's too comfortable in America right now, but I feel the world moving.  Things will change...they are changing right now.  The earth is setting us up for a time worthy of a place in an epic poem.  I can feel the hosts in the sky collectively holding their breath.  Eyes are watching, and yet we don't see them.  Do you feel the tingling?

What's our next move?  There's a battle, there's a war.  Troops mobilize.  Somewhere on an invisible plane that finite eyes can't see, thousands rally together to begin what has been written before time.  Feet are marching, the sound is echoing, but earthly ears can't hear it, even if they strain.  It is only felt with a sixth sense, a God-given indescribable feeling.  A warning, a pulsing vibration that begins at the core of the earth.  A groaning.

Whispers in heaven bounce back in forth between other-worldly creatures.  The very seraphim covering the face of God long to look on the spectacle.  "What will they do?"  The whispers quietly undulate.

Time ticks on, though dragging.  Gravity still holds us captive.  The earth orbits the sun, and why wouldn't it?  It hasn't been ordered to stop yet.   But soon it will.  Everything will stand still, dangling in place like a mobile in a classroom that has lost its momentum to twirl.  The planets will halt without the necessary force that caused them to travel in the first place.  All other galaxies will flicker, then be extinguished after a slight hesitation.

The spotlight brightens and focuses on us and our terrestrial ball.  The glare is so bright, it can never be fathomed.  The sound of royal trumpets, and the skies turn colors unseen--brilliant joyous hues.  Something is coming, as the sky is rent in pieces, like shreds of paper.  He's coming.

But not now...it's so close that all of nature is quaking and trembling in anticipation.

And yet, here we live and breathe in our ignorant humanity.  We trample the poor, we slaughter the sick and homeless.  We rape the young, beat and neglect the old.  We watch the hungry starve, but we don't notice them.  They are right before our blind eyes, the same eyes that soak in the images on a screen, and the garbled messages reach our brains faintly, but they are easily forgotten.  Death, disease and spilled blood, we are all exposed to these. Do we move? No.  It's all so trivial.  A hundred years from now, a movie or song will not matter.  A TV show that was once popular, people won't remember it or even care.  They'll remember a struggle though, the fight for what was right.  They'll  read about it.  But right now, we are missing something Great, something worth dying for.

"So, what's it going to be?  When it all comes down to cycling trivialities?"  

Monday, July 30, 2012

Write the Truest Sentence You Know

"Do not worry. You have always written before and you will write now. All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence you know," Ernest Hemingway.

Today, I chatted with a former professor about writing and how someday, my book will be on the NY Time's best-seller list. He taught a class called leadership in the media. He would ask us what leadership meant. What is leadership to YOU? As my life unfolds, and yes I am very young, but leadership is the strength to never back down when life is kicking the shit out of you. It's the ability to never give up, but most of all, it is not giving a shit about what people think. It's not letting assholes and the ignorance of the masses dictate how you perceive and write about the truth. The truth is the truth, no matter what. Yes, I'm a Christian, but I don't lie about who I am or my past. I say what I think, to a fault, but at times I find that there's no other way to say things. It is how it is.

That being said, I don't give a shit if I make people uncomfortable. I don't care if they don't want to hear about rape or injustices. I don't care if what I have to say is unpopular. I don't care if how I believe is outdated, or if I am what some consider to be coarse and unladylike. I am who I am, a flawed being to say the least. But I fight for what I believe.

Why do we skirt around simple truths? Why do we shy away from harsh and coarse things? Why are raped women treated like criminals, and why are women who were forced into sex slavery treated like low-lifes? Do you know what people have been through? Have you been there? I honestly don't think anyone should pass judgment until they walked a mile in that person's shoes. Not a step or a few feet, no. But a mile. That's a while to walk, don't you think? If we spent more of our time walking in other peoples' shoes, this world would be better off. This is easier said than done.

I think about people we label. Don't we all do it? Oh, and with such an ease. We classify people into these perfect little groups. We put them in boxes. I feel like it's time to forgo the cookie-cutter American dream life. How about I live a life without much money, and I fight for those who can't speak and don't have a voice. I believe that it's only when one does this that change actually happens in a nation. If you started giving your life to understand someone else, what would you find? I challenge you to do that. Invest time with someone you've probably labeled to be troublesome or annoying. Chances are that you have more in common with them than you think.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012


Do you ever have the feeling that your life is a dream?  I still try to remember mine.  I look at pictures, stare at images of myself to see if it was all real.  Pictures of Breck and I when we were so young.  Who would have thought?  He's now my husband for almost a year!

Time is flying by me, so quick and fleeting.  I guess that can be something to be grateful for.  Seasons of pain won't last forever.  Seasons of restlessness will come to an end soon.

The more I write, the more I realize there are so many women like me.  Girls who have had the same things happen.  How many of us are there?  There are so many silent sufferers.  We're all afraid to speak up and say what people have done to us.

I'm not afraid anymore.  The more I speak out, the more I see that there's so much that needs to be changed about our society.

It is little wonder that rape is one of the least-reported crimes. Perhaps it is the only crime in which the victim becomes the accused and, in reality, it is she who must prove her good reputation, her mental soundness, and her impeccable propriety.--Freda Adler

I'm going to continue to speak out.  Who cares what people think and say?  There are so many girls that I want to reach out to.  You aren't alone.  Those nightmares you have, the nauseousness and tears that come at the smell of his cologne, it does eventually go away.  You won't always be afraid.  You won't always be hurting.  It does get better.

I promise.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

I Opened Up a River

I unstopped the dam, I've pulled the plug.  Complete avoidance of writing and my more sensible emotions has failed.  I just remembered how much I love writing, regardless of who is listening.  I love words and the flowing healing that comes from them, no matter how difficult it is to write them.  Writing is therapeutic, indeed.  I know that I'm breaking all the rules of writing.  I know I write so sloppily and passively.  I can hear Dr. Clark's grumble if he read my blogs, not because of the content, but because I write so lazily.  Passive...oh, yes, I write what's on my mind, and it's such terrible writing.  That's why I decided to do journalism and not creative writing.  Creative writing requires a lot of thought about placing words perfectly in nicely flowing sentences.  If a piece contains grammatical errors or passive voice, it must be planned.

When I write, I'm not good at planning or structuring.  Things just come out of my head and onto the paper.  They are raw thoughts.  In a structured environment, like journalism, it was easier for me to write because journalism is formulaic writing.  The inverted pyramid, short concise sentences that get to the point in an active voice--all those things came fairly easy.  I miss writing about the facts.  I miss interviewing people about their jobs and lives.  The haunting hunt of the story looms above my head.  What can I say?  I was born to be a journalist.  Asking questions was firmly ingrained in my soul from the beginning.  Just ask my mother.  She could tell you of how annoying I was.  I always wondered "Why?" and "How?"  

You can take the girl out of the newsroom, but you can't take the newsroom out of her.  I'm laughing to myself even as I say this.  It is my destiny.  I will find my way back someday.

Of course, my main interest in writing is how women are treated and abused.  I've always told my husband that I feel called to undercover reporting in Europe or even here in the brothels.  I want to capture the life of women that are ensnared by the sex trade or abuse.  It's important to raise awareness about sex slavery.  The more we know about it, the easier we can stop it.  This is my true passion.  I feel a deep sense of empathy for mistreated women.  My heart bleeds with each story I read.  

Besides my interest in helping women, I love hearing people's stories in general.  Stories from the great generation are my favorite.  World War II stories, with or without happy endings, remind me of how dark the world can get, but also that a generation has the power to rise up and meet the evils of the day with strength and perseverance.  My generation needs this strength now.  I foresee a more difficult time for us in the future.  What are we going to do with the given times and circumstances?  I hope we rise, but sometimes I feel like we're lost.  Just like those after World War I.  We're partying and drinking to get away from the misery in our own lives.  We're trying to forget about evil, instead of confronting it.  It makes me sad.  Time will tell which generation we'll be, either the Lost or the Great Generation.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Baby Daddy

I'm starting to feel that little tickle in my stomach.  The one that tells me that I need a cute little baby, like many of my already-parent friends.  Sigh.  If life were super simple, it would be an easy decision to make.

Last month I had a worry-fit about whether or not I would be a good mother, and blah blah blah.  But I'm really sick of worrying.  In fact, I really don't care anymore.  I want a kid.  I've been back and forth on this, so here it is.  Who's to blame for this sudden shift in attitude?  Well, you can blame my husband and how amazing he is with children.  It makes me melt.

Yesterday, he was holding a little boy in his lap, tickling him and teasing him, and I remembered one of the biggest reasons I was attracted to him.  My good gosh, he's going to be an awesome dad.  He chases our friends' kids around, lifts them up, and the children just love him.  He has a gravitational pull and all the little children just run to him.  I mean, literally.  I love the smile he gets when he's playing with them.  I love the way he talks to them.

We can't really have children right now, because he's still in college.  And after that, he's going to get his graduate degree.  So, really children aren't a possibility right now...I guess.  I also have to put him through school with a job, so yeah, it's going to be hard being the one working and having the baby.  But I don't want to wait five years.  I don't think I could.  I'm ready now.  But, I'm going to try to be patient for at least another year.  Maybe.

Friday, July 20, 2012


Today, four years ago, I lost my best friend.  I lost her on the night of her wedding day.  Just half a day earlier, I had stood by her side as she said "I do."  Four days later, they held her funeral in the same church where she was married.  It was so surreal.  I remember, I sat next to my husband.  We weren't even dating then, but I remember.  Yes, he was the one who was there for me through it all.  He sat next to me, and I remember putting my arm through his to steady myself.

I was living a nightmare.  Numbness and disbelief overcame me, so that even when I went to view her body, I didn't cry.  My mother cried, but I didn't.  I couldn't.  How can you cry about something that you don't believe is real?

How could my best friend die the night she was married?  How could she slip underneath the water in her tub?  Why didn't the police know CPR?  Why did they make her husband, who did know CPR, leave the room?  Why did they let her just lay there? 

By the time she arrived at the hospital, she hadn't breathed in 10 minutes.  Because of some weight-loss drug, her heart was too weak to be revived. 

They tried to revive her all night.  I was there...sitting 10 feet away from her.  I could hear them shuffling in and out, using all the shots of adrenaline that they could.  The machines beeping, the doctor's conversations hurried and passionate at first, then exhausted mumbling as hours ticked by.  But they never got her stable enough to life-flight her to Amarillo.  Why?  

I got to see her after that.  Looking at her hair that was curly...she hadn't had the chance to straighten it.  She would have flipped out if she saw herself in that casket.  Her makeup and hair were always immaculate, but not then, and nevermore.     

When they wheeled her casket out of the church, that's when it hit me.  I started wailing.  "Wait!  Wait!"  My mom caught me.  "I'LL NEVER GET TO SEE HER AGAIN!"

Four years ago.  I thought I was over this.  But I'm not.  This year is the hardest yet.  Maybe it's because I know she wouldn't call me crazy or psycho.  She would see what I've become, the mess of me.  She would understand.  She would sit me down and criticize me, lovingly, for never straightening my hair.  She would then do it for me, and somehow make me look like a model.  Then she would say, "I hate what that asshole did to you.  You don't deserve that.  Screw him.  We'll kick his ass."

It angered her to know that I had been raped.  I don't remember her being so mad as she was then.  "Kaylea, I'm so sorry.  I can't believe this happened to you.  NOT YOU.  You were always the innocent one."  She cried.  I sat in the dorm hallway, and I talked to her for hours.  Life changed for both of us.  It brought us back together again, just to tear us apart.  That's how it goes.  Sometimes there's just no answer.  There's no meaning.  How can I understand?  I just can't.  I have to keep going, because time doesn't stop.  It won't ever stop.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

FĂȘte de la Bastille

Today France's 4th of July!  Only it's on the 14th.  I'm going out with my husband tonight.  Should be nice.  I'm loving this mild summer.  I wish it had been this nice when I was getting married last year.  It was like 108, and my cake was melting from the heat.  I know.  Super awesome right?

Lately, I'm more level, emotion-wise.  It's weird.  Me, peaceful?  Who knew that was even possible?  Breck has been so sweet.  I guess some people probably find my posts on here weird and overly personal, but I just need to write what's on my mind some days.  It's the best therapy.  I know I'm strange.  I like that about myself.  I'm trying my best to show people this wonderful side of me.  It's full of life and breath.  I'm wearing this beaming smile.  I'm dreaming of a life that one day I'm okay, and I don't need to know everything.

Perfect love casts out fear.  I'm going to let my fear be cast out now.  I'm going to live my life without fear.  I'm going to let my life be.  There's a song about that.  I know things will work out in time.  It's nice to believe that today...I may not believe that tomorrow, so I'm going to enjoy this moment.  I need to hold on to it before it's gone.  Time is so fleeting anyway.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

When Life Kicks Your Butt

Lately, I've been crazy busy with the book thing.  Not only that, but life itself has been quite overwhelming.  I was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder a month or so ago.  I'm reading a book over it now called "I Hate You, Don't Leave Me."  It's very helpful in helping me understand my disorder, but it also tells stories of people who struggled with this disorder and ended up committing suicide.  Sometimes, I feel like that.  I'm fearful of the future.  I can barely handle what is currently going on in my life.  How can I handle being a wife and mother?  How can I raise a kid without screwing them up like I'm screwed up?

These are questions I constantly ask myself.  I'm so afraid.  I have a real job now.  I have a husband.  I thought graduating from college and living the life I now lead would make me feel like some kind of responsible adult, but it didn't.  I feel like a child more than ever.  I feel so weak and pathetic.  I'm so blessed, and yet I feel so empty at times.  My husband is wonderful and  so kind to me, I know I don't deserve that.  Maybe if you saw me at home, you would agree.  I'm crazy.  Yes, impulsive, fiery, angry, psycho crazy.  The kind of crazy that I wouldn't think twice about beating the crap out of people who cross me or those who hurt the people I love.  The kind of crazy that hates people because of what's happened to me.  I'm such a cynic.

The bright side to all of this?  I have started writing a book about it.  It's called Pieces of Me.  Here is an excerpt from one of my darker days:


I'm disintegrating, baby, into oblivion.  A billion little pieces.  I don't know if you can catch me, or even hold me now.  I'm like an atomic bomb that goes off...I destroy everything in my path.  I'm splattered all across the universe, scattered  like dust in the wind.  I slip through your fingers every time....cascading over an edge you can't follow.  How could you ever understand if you've never been there?  But I go there all the time, and the next day try to piece myself together again.  But I can't...I'm losing all the pieces.  Each day, more of me is missing.

Some days are brighter.  They're so bright that I can barely breathe because I'm bursting with happiness.  That's how my life is.  Up and down, never anything in between.  Black and white, no grey.  High and low, but it's a bittersweet kind of thing.  I see this world through such different eyes, and I'm grateful for my family and a God that chose to love me.  Why He did, I'll never know, but I don't have to try and justify that.  I don't have to live up to anyone's expectations.  I just need to love Him, and from that overflows and spills into all the other areas I'm so torn up about.  That's the beauty of grace.  It's a day by day thing.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Books in the Books Biz

I haven't written in quite sometime...I should introduce myself to those of you who don't know me.  I'm a semi-psychotic girl with borderline personality disorder.  I'm impulsive at times...my new kick is antique typewriters.  I think I bought five within 48 hours.  My husband nearly crapped his pants and hit the roof.  You're probably wondering, "Why typewriters?"  Well, I'm into antique typewriters because of my new job.

I help people self-publish their projects (anything from cookbooks to genealogies).  The first few weeks have been quite slow, so I would read old LIFE magazines on Google Books.  In a 1955 magazine, I fell hopelessly and helplessly in love with an ad about the Royal Deluxe Quiet typewriter.  Peptobismol pink.  My good gosh, I was pathetically obsessed.

A couple days later, it was Frye moccasins...I couldn't stop.  

Needless to say, I expelled the evil spirit of impulsiveness that comes around every three or four months.  My poor husband.  

I love doing the book thing.  I love designing the covers, formatting the book block.  I even like scanning the massive genealogy documents that have found their way to my desk.  As long as I keep myself busy, I excel.  That's how this being crazy stuff works...you have to find a routine to throw yourself into, work furiously on it and smile.  When you smile a pretty smile, people think you're wonderful.  People think you could be their next best friend.  That's how you survive the day.  Read as much as you can to stuff your brain full of useless knowledge you obsess over while you can't sleep later on.  That's how you survive the night.     

I've traced the British Royal line from Charlemagne to Elizabeth II.  I have read about most of the high profile serial killers and rapists.  I found out that Ted Bundy (infamous serial rapist and murder) died the day I was born.  I find that ironic...since I was raped in college.  Maybe his death was a curse?  Maybe he still found me, only in the body of a spoiled man-child who preyed on, and probably still preys on, innocent freshmen.  God, if I know.

I've read every page of the Bible.  I believe it.  I'm constantly striving to be like Jesus, I just fail about 99% of the time.  He's gracious...He's been good to me, despite my rough past.

Anyways, I'm Kaylea.  I'm slightly crazy...but I can be very charming, funny, maybe a little sarcastic and crude sometimes.  I am foul mouthed most times, short-tempered as well.  I constantly feel guilty, but at the same time I'm not ashamed of who I am.  It's a weird balance.