Epic fail.

So, today my web servers crashed. Of course, the last backup was July 11, 2016, so I lost quite a few great posts from the past two months. I called out the creepers from Charleston with screenshots, talked about how great my friends and family are and then wrote about my boycott of Facebook, just to name a few. I also had to redesign a few elements I have previously changed. Like a broken record I exclaim, “don’t forget to do backups.” I’m guilty of the pot calling the kettle black on this one.

I have to write about my squad again. They have came to me, protected me, listened to me, tried their best to help me and were just generally great. My squad is 10+ years strong and these special people are my greatest assets. There is not anything they would ask me to do that I wouldn’t do for them. They epitomize unconditional love. It’s strange how until 2 months ago they had all never been in the same room together. But they all showed up at The Four Seasons August 10th and they have been as close to each other as they have always been to me. With all the crap, seeing my people come together has been a positive in this sea of negative.

Rockin' my 'Listener of the Day' t-shirt, 9-23-16.
Rockin’ my ‘Listener of the Day’ t-shirt, 9-23-16.

It was fun to take them out on the town and really show them a small glimpse of my world in the big city. They had all visited in the past, but never as a group. Our only worries that night was where everyone was going to sleep and what to order from room service. I voted for pizza from down the street and Bud Lite, but in the end, there was pizza, Chinese, a little Thai, a few burgers and fries and lots of wine and beer. The girls all thought I had lost my mind for drinking Bud Light when they know my choice is Coors Light. They know my heart was still bruised and sometimes my emotions override my brain. I am sentimental from time to time. A boy in Albion broke my heart, and I’m still not completely over it.

In the midst of all the craziness I have still been extremely busy. I have reconnected with some business folks and everything seems to be working out pretty well. I haven’t found a permanent gig yet, but the offers are sitting there just waiting on me to make a decision. It has turned out to be a harder than I anticipated. But with a lot of thought, a little prayer and listening to the advise of the squad, I’m getting closer to making a choice.

I have also gotten to mark two different items off my bucket list. First, I was chosen as KSHE 95’s ‘Listener of the Day’ September 23, 2016. This has been on my list for quite some time, and now I can join the ranks of one of my BFFs who also held the title back in November 2015. And then I had the privilege of being on the field at Busch Stadium taking pics of the St. Louis Cardinals. Yeah, two bucket list items in less than 30 days = winning for now.

The next few weeks are going to be hard. Lawyers are involved, lots of money will exchange hands, a move will be made and life-changing events will take place. But I have my family, my squad and my faith in myself to get me through.

I still dream of the lake almost every single night. I didn’t get to spend near enough weekends there this year. Patience is there waiting on me and an empty lot is waiting on my pole barn house to be built. It will come in time.
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After midnight.

I have realized I do my best writing after midnight. Well, maybe not my best writing, but my most honest writing. And since right now my sleep patterns are kind of crazy and it’s a little after 1 a.m. I will write.

I have caught myself thinking too much lately. I’ve been thinking about someone. I’m really pissed off at myself for even letting this happen. I’m not anti-dating, anti-boy or anti-anything. It’s just that I made the conscious decision almost 5 years ago to date like a man. This means, no strings, no expectations, no long term, no getting used to anybody, no toothbrush at his house, no commitment, no nothing.

Call me callous, but this has worked relatively well for me for the past five years. Then last year I let my guard down temporarily and got burnt horribly. I knew better, and my heart payed the price.

Don’t get my wrong, I am far from perfect girlfriend material. Click here to read a post from back in January where I explain some of this. I think part of my problem is I have been in self-imposed isolation for too long. I have gotten too used to being on my own. I love the perfect solitude, but right now all I can think about is not being alone and it is freaking me out. And, I have turned down 4 guys in the last month.

I am so sick of all my friends telling me just to do what makes me happy. Wanna know what makes me happy? Brandon and Luc, beautiful flowers, unlimited Mountain Dew and Twinkies, loud music, water (ocean or lake), medium rare steak, my phone ringing, Adelitas Way and Cracker Barrel salad—just to name a few.

It’s hard for me to admit, but thinking about him still gives me butterflies. I can’t shake it. I can’t figure out if this a good thing or a bad thing. Worse yet, is I just wrote it here and he’ll probably read it at some point. I haven’t figured out how far I can put my guard down, still be completely honest, but not scare him off and not lose myself in the process. Does that even make sense?

For now, I will remain calm, listen more than talk (which is easy, because I love the sound of his voice), pray a situation works itself out sooner rather than later and try to carry on with business as usual. Right now business as usual is getting back to making money, figuring out exactly where I want to live and then doing something about it. The kicker is doing all this without thinking about him. Fat chance.

I have said, “it is what it is” way too many times lately. And although it is correct, I want to never have a reason to say it again. I respect the situation, but I don’t like it. I even understand it, but I don’t like it. I want him to be happy and I want to help with that. I want to take care of him—and him take care of me. I want dull Saturday nights with him curled up on the couch, eating pizza and watching the big screen. I want Sunday afternoon ballgames at Busch Stadium with him. I wanna get started spoiling my grand daughter (she’ll be here August 22). I want him to realize his happiness is important.

I want him to choose me and let the rest work itself out. Isn’t it about time for something amazing to happen?
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And today, I write.

Yesterday I made the commitment to write every single day. Then I woke up this morning, looked at my website stats and realized someone had been reading a lot of stuff this morning at about 12:36 a.m. (And of course, that is OK.) So then I started reading my stuff again to kickstart my memory and basically to just see how embarrassed I should be over all the stupid shit I have posted from time to time. But then I thought about that for a minute or two. Sure, there is some not so great stuff on here, and there is also a lot of stuff that is super personal, and there is also some really great stuff too. But what’s the common denominator? They are all me—the good, the bad and the ugly. My life has been a journey and I am still a work in progress. But I won’t ever be a fake. I own my mistakes, I still cry for some lost loves and I still stand by my mantra of “not unhappy.” I know it’s a cliché, but “everything happens for a reason.” And then I write about it.

Of course I am still in the habit of overthinking everything, but maybe this time I will just go with the flow. Yeah, right. I have started thinking about the novel I burnt and all those words that are just gone now. I have got to dig out my old journals to get a grip on just how much I have grown in the last ten years. Although I am and always will be a realist, I still believe something amazing is about to happen—every single day. I’m still working on my lack of patience.

I need to spend some quality time in the welding shop with my favorite toy, the plasma cutter. There is something about having my work clothes on, getting dirty and creating some killer art out of steel that is good for my soul. A friend has said that the welding shop is just my illusion of actually doing some hard work, but I disagree. Just because I sit behind a desk for sometimes 12+ hours, doesn’t mean I don’t work hard—I just work smart.

Along with my writing every day commitment, I am also going to try to write about the stuff I don’t want to write about. As much as everything I write has been true, it sometimes hasn’t been complete. There is still a piece of me that I don’t share. It’s hard to write about the stuff that isn’t so great. I need to not hold back, write everything. And I shall try to do that.

“When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back. A week is more than enough time for us to decide whether or not to accept our destiny.” ―Paulo CoelhoThe Devil and Miss Prym

This quote jumped out at me this morning, and I’m going with it.
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Thinking out loud.

Writer3a_writing_BnWThis space has been neglected lately, and I have no good excuse. Last night I was talking to a dear friend after reading a great short story he had written and sent me. I was going on and on about how he should start blogging (and he should). But then I realized I hadn’t written anything of substance in a long, long time.

I’ve been uninspired, whiney, lazy and kind of in a transition period. I’m not unhappy, just ungrounded right now. I’m hoping a road trip will fix some of this, but I’m responsible for the rest.

I have forgotten lately what is really important—me. I pointed aforementioned friend to this post I wrote back in January and I guess I needed to reread it. It is spot on. I don’t think I have ever written anything more true about myself, and I have written a lot of sappy, sentimental, sad and happy stuff about me—both good and bad.

I had forgotten that I want to be writer when I grow up. Now is the time to grow up. I have the time, I have the inspiration and I have no excuses.

I also talked to him about great writing prompts. I have been ignoring mine. I have said a hundred times, “I should write about this,” and then never do. That changes today. I am making the commitment to write something every single day. They won’t all be masterpieces, but they will be words on a page, and that is progress. I even bought an actual journal and new pen for those times when “old school” is the inspiration.

We also talked about edits. I know he has a lot of great stuff he has written over the years and I am anxious/excited to read and edit for him. Sometimes I think I am a better editor than writer. I had a great teacher. My mom was my editor for 15+ years, and she was (and still is) brutal. I may have to dig out my AP style book. I wonder what box that is packed away in?

My friend may not realize what he has started. He may have a best seller buried in his piles of words. And I’m hoping he lets me post some of his stories here.  He also produces some killer poetry I would love to publish here too. Like I mentioned before, I haven’t written anything of substance here in a very long time and I am totally going to use him and our conversations as writing prompts from time to time. (Hope he doesn’t mind.) I’m glad he has trusted me with his work and I hope I don’t let him down.

Today I’m going to pay attention to my surroundings, laugh, maybe cry, learn something new and get the rest of my bag packed for an epic road trip. What are you going to write about today?
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Write.

Write BuzzFeed had this article that I totally stole all these quotes from. They had them all in ugly, big graphics, and I just wanted the words. When I can’t write, I read, and these quotes have kept me going over the years.

“You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should’ve behaved better.” -Anne Lamott

“Mistakes are the portals of discovery.” -James Joyce

“And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worse enemy to creativity is self-doubt.” -Sylvia Plath

“Write what disturbs you, what you fear, what you have not been willing to speak about. Be willing to be split open.” -Natalie Goldberg

“We have to continually be jumping off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down.” -Kurt Vonnegut

“Quiet people have the loudest minds.” -Stephen King

“I write to give myself strength. I write to be the characters that I am not. I write to explore all the things I’m afraid of.” -Joss Whedon

“If it is still in your mind. It is worth taking the risk.” -Paulo Coelho

“The role of a writer is not to say what we all can say, but what we are unable to say.” -Anais Nin

“No black woman writer in this culture can write ‘too much’. Indeed, no woman writer can write ‘too much’. No woman has ever written enough.” -Bell Hooks

“If you hide your ignorance, no one will hit you and you’ll never learn.” -Ray Bradbury

“If I waited for perfection I would never write a word.” -Margaret Atwood

“Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self.” -Cyril Connolly

“Be the instrument playing the sound of your life’s passing.” -Jonathan Safran Foer

“Get it down. Take chances. It may be bad, but it’s the only way you can do anything really good.” -William Faulkner

“You can’t blame a writer for what the characters say.” -Truman Capote

“We can destroy what we have written but we cannot unwrite it.” -Anthony Burgess

“I want to say something so embarrassing about September that even the leaves start blushing and turning red.” -Jarod Kintz

“I write entirely to find out what I’m thinking, what I’m looking at, what I see and what it means. What I want and what I fear.” – Joan Didion

“If you don’t care for obscenity, you don’t care for the truth.” -Tim O’Brien

“There is no denying the wild horse in us.” -Virginia Woolf

“A writer is a writer not because she writes well and easily, because she has amazing talent, or because everything she does is golden. A writer is a writer because, even when there is not hope, even when nothing you do shows any sign of promise, you keep writing anyway.” -Junot Diaz

“Writing a novel is a terrible experience, during which the hair often falls out and the teeth decay. I’m always irritated by people who imply that writing fiction is an escape from reality. It is a plunge into reality and it’s very shocking to the system.” -Flannery O’Connor

“The books that the world call immoral are the books that show the world it’s own shame.” -Oscar Wilde

“Nothing haunts us like the things we don’t say.” -Mitch Albom