Do You Know What Breve is?

Sometimes I really wish I had made different decisions in my life.  I wish I had gone to a different school and made different career choices.  I wish I had been more rebellious, instead of stuck in a Christian bubble that made me think God was telling me to be a youth pastor, thus altering the whole course of my life.  Because I could have been anything.  I could have gone to school to get a real career.  I was smart enough.  I was almost a 4.0 student in high school and college.  But instead I went to Bible college.  And my degree is almost worthless, as far as living my dreams or having a fulfilling career go.  I realized real quick that I’m not meant to be in ministry, and that I would actually be miserable there.  I had heard wrong.  I wish I had gone somewhere to get my degree in English or creative writing or something, so I could have maybe been a teacher, so maybe I would have an impact on someone else’s life.  Or maybe that I would have gone immediately to school to study counseling or psychology, because those have also always been interesting to me.

And I know that if I had made different choices in my life, not only my life would have been affected.  I never would have met Michelle, and she never would have moved to Mammoth.  I never would have moved to Alabama and met the best boyfriend ever.  My friend Sarah probably would have never met her boyfriend.  There’s a lot of things.  So maybe I’m selfish, wishing things were different.

Today, a woman told me that I didn’t know what breve was (half and half).  She explained to me that it wasn’t milk, it was cream (even though it’s half whole milk, and half heavy cream, so technically it’s both).  She told me she wanted more breve in her drink, that was made out of breve.  You can’t add extra water to a full glass of water.  You can’t fill a cup above capacity.  I can’t add more humanity to my humanity.  It does not make more, it just fills up.  So she tried to imply that I was stupid.

I am an intelligent human.  I might be more intelligent than most of the people that I’m surrounded by.  But I didn’t do anything with that intelligence.  Instead, I work at Starbucks, with a wasted college degree, somewhere much too far from home.

I could have been anything.  Instead, every stranger automatically assumes I’m beneath them.

I miss home.  I miss my people, my church, my community, my family.  I wish things had been different.

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All the Little Things that Break My Heart

A thing that I’ve been really bothered by lately is how cruel people can be to one another.  And I’m not even thinking on a large scale.  I’m thinking, small scale, people you work with, people you’re related to, people you serve or buy coffee from.

It’s like, we all try to see what we can get away with.  We tease, until our teasing turns to cruelty.  We go too far, and refuse to say we’re sorry.  We refuse to admit when we’re wrong.  And the cycle keeps spinning.

And I’m probably guilty of this.  I’ll do my best to accept some of the blame.  But really, what’s the point in making someone’s day miserable?  What’s the point in calling someone dumb, or making them feel dumb, or spreading their little mishaps around?  What’s the point in making someone feel useless?  We are all useful.  Everyone has a purpose, so why do we like to try to take that purpose away?

I’m really bummed out that so many people have excuses for their actions.  They say we’re too sensitive.  Or they ask us to have an open mind, without first having one themselves.  They’ll say it’s their religious duty.  They’ll say their protecting our country.

But this country does not define me.  This religion does not define me.  We were all made with much larger definitions, much larger purposes, much more reason to exist than just… existence.

It sounds too simple to just beg everyone to get along.  But all of this getting under each other’s skin has really gotten under my skin.  Get out of my skin.  You’re breaking my heart.

Find something that makes you excited about life

On days when I have to get up really early for work, my dog is the most excited.  I don’t know what it is about early mornings, but she wags her tail and makes funny groany sounds and runs around my bedroom and the living room.  She’s not like this on days when I sleep in.  I’m wondering if it’s just because the sun isn’t up yet.  But she loves mornings.

The other morning I got up and she got extra excited.  She ran as fast as she could around the living room, then launched herself full speed onto my couch while I sat down to put my shoes on.  If you only knew my dog, you would know that she’s usually indifferent to everything.  We call her a cat dog.  She doesn’t even get that excited to be fed, unless it’s part of your dinner, or it’s her night time treat.  It was absolutely hilarious.

It just makes me wish I was that excited about things in my life as she is to go on a walk at four in the morning.  And maybe I am.  I’m excited about music and poetry and my future with my love.  But do I show it enough?  I want to run around and wag my tail and jump on the couch.

Find something that makes you as excited about life as my dog is about going for walks in the morning.

I Think I Know

Today I went to church and work and home.  I’ve been working a lot lately, a closing a lot lately, so I haven’t been able to make a decent meal at home, and since going to Europe, I haven’t had a lot of money outside of bills, so I’ve been waiting to get paid again (I did last Friday) so I could buy groceries, which are now bought, so life is becoming normal again.  Anyway, I’ve been eating out (a lot of Taco Bell) or making due with what I can get at work, or eating cans of soup, for the last couple of weeks it seems like.  But tonight is different.

While I was at work, my boyfriend went to Publix and bought steaks and squash and potatoes and is currently reverse searing a ribeye and making mashed potatoes and sautéing some things.  I love home cooked meals, and he’s really good at them.  So I’m pretty sure that I think I know what love is.

Too Damn Comfortable

People used to ask me what I wanted to do with my life after I finished college.  And for a long time that answer was the same, even though it seemed impossible.  Because what I dreamed of doing, what I dream of doing, is something that could never be more than a dream.  I was always told I wouldn’t be able to make money, because apparently your dreams have to fit into a career.  And those that did believe with me, that did dream with me, none of them knew how to help me, because they had their own dreams to follow.
Ever since I fell in love with poetry and started doing spoken word, I’ve wanted to travel and do that.  My entire life I’ve imagined myself speaking and telling stories and somehow encouraging people who felt as lost as me to keep going.  But trying to explain this has gotten too hard and unconventional, so I’ve allowed myself to settle.

When I packed up my car and moved across the country with no job, few friends, and no place to live, I really thought I was taking a step toward making my dreams come true.  I thought that I would be writing more.  I thought that I would be performing more, possibly.  I thought there would be people that believe in me and knew how to help me.  Because I’ve never known how to make my dreams come true on my own.

Instead, I sort of allowed myself to almost give up.  I settled into a good enough for right now job.  I let my minimalist ways slip a little bit and probably have more than I need.  I have a dog and a boyfriend and furniture and I’m locked into a lease.  I can’t fit all my possessions in my car, and I can’t just pack up and go anywhere, even if I wanted to.  I decided to go back to school next fall and get my masters in counseling, because maybe I’ll be able to change lives using poetry through counseling.  Because this makes sense.  Because this is comfortable.

I bought a camera about a year ago.  I bought it so that I could start filming spoken word videos for youtube, because that seemed like a logical first step.  I had someone that was willing to help me with shoots, but they aren’t as willing as I thought.  So I can do them on my own, but I guess I’m afraid.  I’m afraid of the judgement of the quality, because I know my editing won’t be as good.  And I know that the sound quality won’t be perfect because I don’t own a separate mic, and I know of at least one important person who will judge me for that.  I’m afraid of embarrassing myself.  I don’t really like to draw attention, I’d rather have it be given.  Thus, I haven’t really tried to chase my dreams.  I haven’t tried to book any gigs.  I haven’t shown anyone anything .  And I’ve almost quit altogether.

Last Wednesday I went and saw a spoken word artist that I used to listen to in college.  He tours and does spoken word for a living, and he happened to be coming to Florence.  He doesn’t make a lot and he doesn’t have a lot, but he’s doing what he was made to do.  He’s doing what I wish I could do.  And I told him that.  And he told me to go for it.  He told me do it anyway.  Because I actually have the resources to record an ep.  I actually can do some videos.  I actually could start doing gigs.  And I’m wondering if I’m just too damn comfortable.

Europe

I just took a trip through Northern Europe with my dad.  We flew into Copenhagen, rented a car, then drove up through Sweden to Norway, where we spent a couple days outside Oslo.  We walked through the city of Oslo, went to a viking ship museum, then drove down to Kristiansand and went to the zoo.  It was amazing.  We saw capybaras.
We then took several ferries to get down to Germany through Denmark.  We spent a night in Hamburg.  I don’t recommend it.  We drove over to Switzerland where we spent several days in Interlaken with people from all over Europe who are a part of my home church, the Lighthouse.  It was the trip of a lifetime.

Two years ago, I took another trip of a lifetime.  I went to Ireland, where I spent ten days touring and writing to be part of a coffee table book.  That book didn’t end up being what it could have been, but that’s besides the point.  It was there that I really started dreaming about driving through Norway with my dad.  His entire heritage is Norwegian, and it was really cool to see where we came from.  Next time we’ll spend more time just in Norway, and maybe travel up to see the fjords.

But this trip was one that I think we both really needed.  While we were overseas we hit the year mark of my mother’s passing.  It’s hard to believe it’s been a whole year.  We got to see beautiful landscapes that she would have loved.  We rode a gondola up a mountain and hiked across, looking down on houses and lakes and trees.  We drank coffee and ate chocolate.

This was a trip that I’ll always be thankful for.

European Dreams

This post will be short.  I’m about to leave Florence, AL to drive to Atlanta, where I will get on a plane with my dad and fly to Europe.  I have dreamed of this trip for so long, and now it’s here.  For two weeks I will be exploring Norway, Switzerland, Germany and Denmark.  I will get to see where I came from.  And maybe I’ll get some insight on where I’m going.  I wish I had time to write more, but I’m already running late!  I’ll try to post while I’m there, but it probably won’t happen.  Sorry that this isn’t that thoughtful, I just found it necessary.

Northern Europe, I’ll see you soon.