Needing is One Thing and Getting’s Another

My peeps! Long time no see.

You guys should know something about me: I love quotes. So today, I’m going to take a few quotes I’ve heard/found recently and describe some events in my life. Because it’s been awhile, and this post seems like so much fun to write!

“I’ve been waiting for months, waiting for years, waiting for you to change. Aw, but there ain’t much that’s dumber than pinning your hopes on the change in another so…Needing is one thing, and getting, getting’s another.” –OK Go

{This is a new song I found by Ok Go. You should check out the video here–it’s schweet. Anyway. I’ve learned a lot these last few weeks about getting vs. needing. I need respect from the people in my life. Do I always get it? No. Do I deserve it? Yes, who doesn’t? But the most important lesson from this song, and from my recent life, is that you can’t rely on anyone else to get you what you need. But dang, wouldn’t it be easier that way?}

“May the bridges I burn light the way.”

{I am officially not staying at my job next year. So scary! But hey, I just have to keep thinking that what I’m doing now and other facets of my past will light the way. I know I made the right choice. Most of the time. It’s gonna be hella hard to leave these kids, though. Even if they do call me Lady Gaga once a week.}

“Never let the odds keep you from doing what you know in your heart you were meant to do.”

{This quote is particularly important as I’m beginning the process of being interviewed for graduate school. It’s kind of INTIMIDATING. I just have to remind myself that if I don’t get in–although I totally will, right?–it doesn’t mean this door is closed. It just means I have to try again. It just means that even if it seems unlikely, if your gut is telling you what you are supposed to be doing, go for it, baby. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: you only live once.}

“Change your thoughts and you change your world.”

{This is one of the most important things I have ever heard. Something I need to tell myself repeatedly, because I think the way I think and I don’t know any other way. Oh, but the joys of psychology show us the power of the brain, and the power of a brain change.}

“What I love most about my home is who I share it with.” –Tad Carpenter

{Okay, this one is a little cliche. I was lucky enough to visit my family and friends in Bozeman this past weekend: they are my heart. But my heart is here, too, with the Boyfriend in our apartment…Oh and our NEW CAR, what! Well, mostly his new car. I am an AmeriCorps… Speaking of, as my job gets tougher, I’ve also realized that home needs to be separate from work, and I am enjoying it here more and more as I/we make it a home. Now we have memories here: like the time the Boyfriend had to pick me up from work because I was so sick and had dragged myself to a field trip and held in the sickness just long enough to puke on the freeway. Every time I pass the spot I smile.  I’m sure the Boyfriend is not quite so fond of this memory. But still, that’s just one of many. I am a lucky girl.}

“Don’t be so hard on yourself, darling.” 

{Every time I hear this quote I feel a little bit better about everything. Maybe I don’t have to be perfect and try to fix everything at once. It’s hard to be happy when you’re mean to yourself–but it’s a hard lesson. It’s my habit to get angry at myself when something goes wrong, when I make a mistake. But isn’t that what life is about? How would we get anywhere, otherwise? My job is difficult because the atmosphere is not conducive to mistakes–I practically have an anxiety attack when I mess up. One thing I’m learning: I mess up a LOT. And is it because I’m a bad person? NO. Sometimes I don’t think, sometimes I assume, sometimes I think differently, sometimes I think and forget. So sue me, world! I think I learn from my mistakes, but what I’m really learning is that I NEED to make mistakes and I need to be okay making mistakes. Because, my peeps, mistakes are the way of the world and the world is all we’ve got.}

“When life gives you curves, flaunt them.”

{I trying to lose weight and be healthy. It’s sometimes UGH but I do feel better. Mostly, I want to be okay with how I look, as long as I’m healthy. And even if I do lose a ton of weight, which I am not planning, I developed when I was ten and I’m never gonna lose my curves. It’s about time to just embrace ’em, already.}

There’s a quick update of my life the past little while. Forgive me for being so emo…but it is a Monday.

p.s. All of the other quotes besides the two credited came from Pinterest. 🙂

It Ain’t All Flowers and Candlelight

It’s almost CHRISTMAS! My favorite time of the year.

A time to spend with loved ones. Which I am–don’t get me wrong–but I’m also learning something about my relationship (something that I’ve learned again and again, and each time it strikes me anew): it ain’t all flowers and candlelight. (Although you can read some about our adorable romance here.)

Specifically, splitting holidays. Because we live together, both of our families expected us to go to each respective house. Even after trips to Vegas for a family wedding and a trip out to see them at Thanksgiving.

Well, we’re broke, and we aren’t married, so we won’t be spending Christmas together, unfortunately. And yet the majority of my friends in Bozeman are bringing their respective significant others home for the holidays. Which means, I’ll be some kind of ninth wheel–somehow, even when I have a boyfriend, I never have a date in this town.

It’s the Bozeman jinx.

It’s also one of the those times where I catch myself saying “this would be so much easier if we were married. Then we’d just go to one house and the other house would have to suck it up.”

Don’t worry–I usually catch myself. The thought of marriage still makes me pee my pants.

(Plus, my mother is not the type to “suck it up,” but would nag me so I would visit not long after Christmas, anyway.)

And as the holidays strike, the epidemic of engagements begins again. I fall into that trap of wanting to be married, of wondering why I’m not engaged yet and why (insert chosen name here) gets to be happily planning their wedding.

However, folks, one thing I’ve learned: marriage does not solve everything. When I was about fourteen, I thought getting a boyfriend would solve everything. When I actually got a boyfriend (about four years later) I thought that going abroad as I had always wanted would fix everything. Then, when that didn’t work, I thought changing my majors would make everything perfect. And so on down the line.

The point of this story is: there’s always something else that would make life absolutely perfect.

These days, the BF and I are pretty happy, and I can’t imagine marriage making anything better or changing anything.

Except we’d be a lot poorer, if we had a wedding. (Well, I will insist on a honeymoon, at least).

And maybe we’d be together for Christmas.

But, life isn’t perfect. Not even at Christmas.

(Although all the pretty lights really do help. AND we can’t forget the plethora of Christmas cookies.)

I think this is what growing up is.

NOW I just need to…getintogradschoollearntocleanfixmycargotoparis…

KIDDING.

A Whole New Fall

It’s OCTOBER!

I may have already told you this a thousand times, but October is one of my FAVORITE months. If I was decisive, it might be my favorite.

And, it’s halfway through! Whaaa??

So far, October has included this:

a short camping trip in Winter Park, CO

and THIS:

a short conference in Buena Vista, CO

a quick visit to THIS:

Bozeman, Montana!

(to get some stuff I left behind–like my snow tires–and to celebrate my dad’s birthday and belatedly celebrate my sister’s!)

So far, October in Colorado is living up to it’s name. Can you believe THIS is real? I’ve seen it with my own two eyes:

courtesy of bing.com/travel.

I love fall.

So far, it’s going by quickly…other recent developments (besides being constantly on the move) include the demise of my second Nook (I think I read too much for the product–thank God for warranties!), the expansion of my resume to include Grant Writing 101 and Editor-in-Chief of the North Lincoln Newsletter for Colorado “I Have a Dream” (CIHAD from now on), a great reunion with friends, and a visit to see Swan Lake at the Colorado Ballet!

Oh, I’m also starting yoga.

Will my body ever bend into this position?

Credit: ©Barry Stone 2005

Well, a girl can dream.

Do Good

It’s almost TIME!

ELEVEN days until I leave the lovely mountain town of Bozeman and move to DEEEEEEENVER, Colorado!

it's a colorful state, weee!

Very exciting.

The only part is, I am leaving a life behind. I’m sure there are only good things ahead of me, but goodbyes are hard.  Like I’ve heard many say, a goodbye is a very poorly named ritual…is there really anything good about it? Except the excitement of a new open door?

One good thing, besides all of the wonderful well wishes, is the advice I’ve been getting. Some of it isn’t so good, some of it is weird (although “always floss” is probably something I really should listen to) and one particular piece has really stuck with me, from a most unlikely source.

One of the cooks I work with a lot at the nursing home is in her mid-thirties, with several kids and several divorces under her belt. She’s smart and capable, but as she’s from rural West Virginia, she isn’t very educated. Yet, out of nowhere, she’s quite educated on life: the only thing she said to me by way of goodbye was “Do good in Colorado.”

“Do. Good.”

So simple, and for some reason it really just stuck with me. It’s all I’ve been thinking about.

I guess that, when it comes down to it, that’s what I want to do with my life. Sure, I want to be happy, and see the world, find a career (or careers) that I adore, make a home on the coast, surround myself with those who love and respect me.

But under it all? I want to do good.

I may be stressed about the move (i.e. stressed about the sheer amount of packing I still need to do) and nervous about my job and slightly freaked out by moving in with a boy. I’ve been worried about what I am getting out of my life, what I want out of it, what’s going to happen when I’m older, how short and unpredictable life is.

Among all these worries, I forgot that the root of the human experience is tied to our interactions with humans, all lifeforms, and as a result, it is tied to our relationship with the planet and the entire universe, and our treatment of all of this.

So thanks, Cook A, for reminding me that life really doesn’t have to be as complicated as I make it.

And that if you let yourself listen to the people around you, sometimes the most random sources can make it all startlingly clear.