memories, nostalgic, photos

Downton Independence.

[From left to right: My brother. Me. Michael. Geoff. Emily. Jon. Katie.]
My cousin Michael (The boy in the photograph behind the table)  pointed out today that we had the Downton Abbey craze* long before everybody else–way back in 1993, in Independence, Missouri, to be precise. 

Love it. Love them.\

*well the fashion, anyway.

dreams, germany, growing up, hope, lent 2013, memories, words from my heart

A ceramic vase and a lesson on patience and faith.

I have always wanted to live in Germany. Since I was nine or ten.  I knew then I wanted to learn German because my dad told me he had studied that in high school, so naturally I wanted to, too.

I made a vase in ceramic class in high school and thought about where I would place it in my apartment in Germany some day. My thoughts raced about what it would be like and how my life would be. Meanwhile my hands worked naturally, effortlessly, as my thoughts consumed my mind.

I doubted my ability to move abroad back then. I secretly told myself it probably wouldn’t work out. I was way too scared.

In university I thought a bit about going abroad but was so in love with my friends and courses that just the thought of us ever parting would make my heart hurt.

Then I decided to au pair. Got on a plane. Moved in with a crazy family. Moved out. Moved in with a brilliant family. Came home. Ached to come back. Got offered a rare job opportunity. Almost five months later here I am.

Here I am sitting in my own apartment–in Germany. Meeting friends all the time. Exploring it all as much as I can.

Never would I have thought this would actually work out.

But high school self–here I am. 

Here I am and this, it is everything you were hoping for while kneading that small vase into life. (Better than you imagined, even.)

So now, when I’m consumed in worries and fears about what’s next, I’ll try and remember that–as cheesy as it seems–your dreams can come true. And I’m darn thankful I jumped in head first, because I can’t imagine myself anywhere else than right where I am.

I won’t give up on my other hopes either, because I’m pretttttttty confident those are going to manifest themselves at some point, too.

The hardest part? Having patience and Faith, but day by day, I’m getting better with both.

P.S. that vase is still sitting at home, but I’ll get it here soon. 

“You must be the person you have never had the courage to be. 
Gradually, you will discover that you are that person, 
but until you can see this clearly, you must pretend and invent”
-Paulo Coelho, Eleven Minutes

lent 2013, life lesson, little reminders of life, my mom

Some books don’t have all the answers.

 [My mom & me circa 1989.]

“According to most books, my lack of confidence is a ‘sign I had an absent father,’ and that’s obviously not the case for me, cause dad is awesome. So then I just yell “Well now I can’t trust anything you say!” at the *author,”-me to my mom today on the telephone. 

“Well, that isn’t true. And don’t be like those annoying parents who read all the books and think they know it all. Because a lot of it is based on going with what your heart tells you. You just have to have confidence.”-my mom. 

“I don’t know, I just think of all these negative things about myself. I can’t help it.”-me

“Really knock that shit off cause it’s not true and it’s making me mad..”-my mom, who keeps it real.

That’s love.

*the author’s name on the book cover, naturally. But I’d say it to their face, too! I would! 

found it loved it, lent 2013, read it love it, words for the heart

Borrowed definitions.

“We’re not, like, seeing other people, right?” I asked. We were barely over the one-month mark, I believe.
          You nodded.
          “Excellent,” I said.
          “But I have to tell you something,” you added – and my heart sank.
          “At first, I was seeing someone else. Only for the first week or two. Then I told him it wasn’t going to work.”
          “Because of me?”
          “Partly. And partly because it wouldn’t have worked anyway.”
          I was glad I hadn’t known I was in contest; I don’t know if I could have handled that. But still, it was strange, to realize my version of those weeks was so far from yours.
          What a strange phase – not seeing other people. As if it’s been constructed to be a lie. We see other people all the time. The question is what we do about it.

Oh the leaps and bounds we encounter utterly clueless. Utterly hopeful.
learning to love, lent 2013, relationships

Trying to tame your heart.

Clearly I am not doing so well at keeping up with my Lenten promise. But I’ll tell you why I didn’t — couldn’t — write something for the other day.

I was exhausted.

Not physically; emotionally.

Because sometimes I get tired of hiding how much I care for fear of “overwhelming” the one for whom I care. What kind of relationship is that anyway? Toning down how much you care for someone? I don’t understand. But if you read any magazine, book, any crap on “how to have a relationship,” it always seems to say “lay low, don’t show too much interest.”

But what if guys are reading the same mumbo-jumbo and then at the end of the day we are all walking around with all these thoughts and emotions buried in our hearts. For fear of showing too much?

My God, what a sad way to live.

But it’s exhausting because no matter how much I realize this, recognize the illogicality of it all, I’m far too afraid to go against the norm.

And I can’t decide which makes me sadder: 
My lack of confidence in my self to share all the love I have to give–
or the fact that I’m so afraid to stand up for something I sincerely believe in, for fear of standing alone at the end of it all.

So I sat on my bed and cried. Not tears of sadness. Not tears of sorrow.Tears of exhaustion. 

Because sometimes I think trying to tame your heart is more exhausting than trying to tame a lion.

(But of course, I only have experience with the former–so I can’t really say.)

To writing more and loving with all we have.