Dear Life, Please Stop Over Working Me Like A Prostitute

I can still remember three months ago, hanging out with my one of my best friend, sitting on her boyfriend’s couch, sun beating down on my shoulders, drinking a Budweiser, watching an old episode of The Simpsons, bragging about how great my sex life was, not having a care in the world. What happened to those days?

I’m currently working over 40 hours a week between three jobs (the struggle is real) with no prospects in the foreseeable future. I’m also being forced to work on Thanksgiving, and I’m not allowed to have any vacation time until next year. My point is that you never know when you feel like an adult until one day, your only day off is during the middle of the week, you’re starving from not having the time to eat, have too many errands to make, and somehow look at graduate schools and job applications. Turning 24 has faced some challenges, so I wrote a poem about some of the stresses I’ve got going on.

A month ago was my birthday,

of delightful whisky shots, confidence in kissing a stranger, moving forward from 23,

none of that matters, not today.

My crime is considered prostitution; shameful, guilty, even slutty.

What was I thinking? How can I possibly change?

Sure, I have things to get me by, there’s just damaged goods.

Still knowing how I’m responsible for the waste, what I’ve caused

into my misery; the back of my mind.

Wishing I knew better than taking those for granted off their guard.

Wishing you could get to know me now–the warrior from the wide eyed girl.

I don’t fail three times.

I only get better at my job.

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Please Don’t Settle For Moldy Cheese

Last night, I had a revelation; something that made me realize how mature I am about wanting to be with the right person for me. Let’s call this fellow, The Cheese Guy. Cheese Guy and I meant on Tinder about a month ago. I started up the conversation due to the wall of cheese that was behind him in his profile picture. I was curious, so I decided to say hello. We were making such good conversations, that we exchanged numbers. Long story short, we went on two dates and everything seemed to going better than I ever expected. We both had similar upbringings with an alcoholic parent present, achieving the highest honor for Boy and Girl Scouts, loved the same type of movies and music, and having both goofy and serious sides to our personalities. It had only been a week, but things couldn’t have been better.

And then, Germany won the World Cup and the Stinky Drunk Cheese Guy was out and pride of himself, his actions screamed ‘shame and pity me!’. After the final game was over, the whole I was at his apartment, I kept looking at his roommate, signaling, “What the fuck is wrong with him?”. All he could do was shrug with a confused look on his face. Cheese Boy also wanted to drive while he was drunk and I freaked out on the inside. Something that irresponsible should never have come out of his mouth. I left with him begging for me to stay, but I turned in well before that.

I had decided to let it go and move on; it was the world cup after all and Cheese Guy did live in Germany for a year as a transfer student. I figured it was a one time thing, no real harm done. We hung twice that week and he did apologized to me for his actions and what he said. This past Sunday was a real eye opener. Not only was he drunk, but he also decided to “tell the truth” and talk about the girls he has on the side. I was done; Cheese Guy was growing moldy and more attached by the hour and was 0-2 on being a drunk.

The message I’m trying to leave is this. When a problem does arise, don’t just avoid. If it makes you that uncomfortable to deal with, address the issue like an adult while talking about his and your problems with the matter. But the biggest lesson I learned is this; don’t settle for anyone if they do something that bothers you. I was forced to live with an alcoholic but I don’t have to be around it now. I’m also so grateful that I have a good loving relationship with my mom now, because she is growing, as am I, and she’s becoming a wonderful person. I only wish Cheese Guy felt the same way about his parent.

 

On a funny note: Please try to make adult choices for your future and don’t settle until you feel it’s right.

 

 

 

Summer Is Keeping Me Blown Away

It’s finally summer, which means more time to go outside, summer books to read, hanging out with friends til really late, and explore my writing. Summer always gets me feeling restless while having a job to tie me down in the god awful suburbs. Someday, I will move out and enjoy those long summer nights on my balcony with a glass of wine, a book, and a notebook.

Recently I had a thought though…when was the last time someone was truly blown away by something that happen to them? Can anyone remember the last time it’s happened to you? Little things like rude customer service or someone opening the door for you happen often enough that we don’t consider those events worth wild. I’m talking about feeling breathless as the moment sinks into you and reaches in to grab hold of your emotions. I have asked my friends and even gone into random bars and asked the people around me this questions and I got some great feedback.

1) One of my friends has a passion for motion pictures. He finds the details to makes movies takes a lot of behind the scene stuff happening all the time. The different components, including music, direction, casting, lighting, the way certain shots are taken, are all a replication of life by telling a story. He truly appreciates film as an art form and that was what blew him away.

2) A gentleman at the Edgewild wine bar took the most time to give me an answer, but it was worth the wait. On Christmas Day in 2004, he and his unit were going to leave from Indonesia back to America, back to their loved ones who have missed them for so long. Just before their military unit was about to head home, they had received information that a deadly tsunami just hit the west coast of Indonesia and they desperately needed help. While everyone was initially upset, they knew what had to be done. The next thing he told me that really took his breath away was when he and his brothers were in the helicopter, slowly coming to the surface and seeing the grateful and relived faces from the victims of the tsunami. Looking into the faces he barely knew, their hands were reaching out for help, and an overwhelming sense of connection and thankfulness took place.

3) Same bar, different guy, told me that since he owns the Edgewild restaurant, he felt that what blows his mind was walking out of a restaurant, knowing that it was a 10/10 food review. But ‘it can’t be just about the food’, he say; the whole atmosphere must be in tune with their petite, the staff is to be warm and friendly, the design and lighting should suit the place in the right fashion. You can leave a restaurant, tell the staff ‘thank you for the meal’, and give a great tip, knowing that was an experience you’ll never forget.

4) The woman sitting next to the owner, told me her answer right away. Whenever you expect the most normal scenario to happen with a friend or even a family member and it turns out being the worse time. Even vice versa, the stereotype is broken and you are completely shocked by the outcome.

5) I’m hanging at my favorite bar with some of my girlfriends, when I ask my favorite waitress this question. Her answer came out quickly, filled with her reasoning and explanation. She believed that ‘the fact that natural elements can affect a person’s mood in mind-blowing to me.’ She went on to tell me,  ‘especially if you’re the type of person who prefers one climate over another’ and ‘I use to study marine biology and even the animal’s attitude changes if the weather doesn’t isn’t to their liking.’ Good answer sista, good answer indeed!

6) Finally, I’ll give everyone my answer to this question. What amazes me is that we interact with people every single day; some people you meet are awful, others are warm and friendly, and even some don’t have reaction to what you said or did. And yet, when it comes to sporting events, people will rally with their fellow brother, drink their $10 beers and make conversations like they’ve known each other their whole lives. My experience comes from when I attended the 2006 World Series, Game 6. The Cardinals faced against the Tigers at Busch Stadium to see who would wear the crowd as champions of baseball. My family and I split up because our normal seats cost way more during the playoffs verses regular season. And since my dad and brother went to Game 4, the ladies were on the floor while the guys went upstairs. Try to imagine the game being in the bottom of the ninth, two players in the opposing team are on second and first, and Cardinals pitcher, Jeff Weaver is trying to close the game. My mother and I are staying on our cold feet, holding each other hand, while I scream “It’s not gonna happen! They’re going to lose!” Still keeping her faith, she tells me, “Oh will you shut up!? That’s not going to happen…watch the game!” The count was 2-1, Weaver only had two more strikes and the season would be over. Damn right I was afraid, I thought, being 16 and getting paranoid by the thought of going home empty handed. The next pitch was gonna be a ball, 3-1, making the final game that much more interesting. I remember holding her hand and thinking how cold it must be for my dad and brother. And what they must be thinking. Pitch and stttrrikkkeeeee. There is a knot in my stomach the size of a baseball. I’m thinking I’ll throw up if we lose; we can’t lose cuz that would mean throwing up my dinner. Still screaming, “It’s not gonna happen! It’s not gonn…” And then the moment came; overwhelming happiness, the knot was completely gone, tears of joy burst out, and my mom was yelling just as loud as I was. This might be the first time I had ever been blown away because not only was I in shocked but an entire stadium filled with loving Cards fans were probably thinking the same thing. And what came after was no fighting in downtown St. Louis, people high-five one another, fans being happy and friendly with other fans, even with the losing fans. That shocked me more than anything because I saw individuals putting their differences aside to celebrate a common interest and how happy every single person was.

That’s all I have for now. Tell me what blows you away and I’ll add in your story next time!

How To Start Planning My Creative Future While Watching The Simpsons

It has felt like forever since I took the time to sit down and write without going outside to find inspiration. It’s a very sweet feeling, knowing I can still do it.

Anywho…recently, my retail job and watching early seasons of The Simpsons have taken up most, if not all, of my time. I had never seen an episode of the Simpsons until this year and now I’m addicted. It’s like a meteor of stupid and relevant humor landed in my lap and I can’t get rid of the stains, no matter how hard I try. So far, my favorite seasons are 3, 5, 6, and 8 and I go on amazon a lot to find others. BUT I am working on pumping out the creative drive I once had three weeks ago. It may not seem like a long time, but if you’re like me, if I go three days without having some thought to write down and express out, something is very wrong.

*I mean, look how inviting and happy they look*

The weird thing is that besides little arguments with my mom, life has been treating me well. I’ve been taking it easy for a bit because I’ve had one too many creepy guys hit on me and ask for my number whether I’m out alone or with friends. The guys who are trying to hard to look like “a man” and are over half my age make going out unbearable at times for me. I write at a bar to get away from personal bullshit, not to get to know yours. BUT the good news is that in my second notebook, I have written 30 poems! The other pages are for short stories from “the college years” that I’m writing and planning out, which is great because I’m exploring other avenues I want to pursue with my craft.

I’m considering starting a food blog over the summer. The goal is to start in a month or so and I’m thinking that it’s going to be restaurant reviews on Olive Street in St. Louis. I believe that it will allow me to get out more, socialize with people in a different and fun way, eating good food (always a plus), and writing. What could be better, I haven’t thought that far yet. BUT the biggest discover that has finally been decided; focusing on writing in Graduate School. Life is short to try and be something I’m not. I’d love to learn and focus on creative, argumentative, article writing, or even content writing if the content is interesting enough. My parents were shocked when they found out I want to go to grad school. It’s going to happen because it’s something I’m going to pursue heavily.

While it is nice to take time out and figure out what you want, one must never lose sight on what matters most to you.

A Balancing Act About Becoming A Woman

Life is all about choices and balance. We decide when we want to look for a job after we have watched too many shows on Netflix or (if you’re smart enough) apply for 15 jobs and later on, reward ourselves with a glass of wine and watch some HIMYM. Before I was shipped off to the real world, I would go on YouTube and watch hours of videos before I decided it was ‘a good time’ to start my homework. Now-a-days, responsibilities weigh more heavy on your shoulders and mental state before you even start to think about watching the new episode of ‘The Walking Dead’

Some day, you have just a coffee for breakfast, a chicken salad for lunch, and fish for dinner. Other days, you have a donut for breakfast, cheesy soup and ALL OF THE BREAD for lunch, toasted ravioli for dinner, and then eating half a plate of cookies just because. But I bounce back from those type of days. Sure, I use to worry about what my body looked like and how other people would judge me, but those days have been behind me since August, 2013. I care enough about my health, not my appearance.

Next time someone wants to hang out for a few hours, think to yourself, ‘What would make hanging out with you worth it?’ You know you would have a good olde time with your friends; that’s not the issue. Is is worth spending quality time with that friend if you haven’t felt fulfillment within yourself? That’s the real test.

Progress Report II

I would say that things are getting better.

Emotionally, I feel pretty great for where I’m at in my life at this moment. My understanding is that life and its inevitable events are only going to get harder as you get older; for instance, having your best friend gone in less than two months before leaving for the navy is a bitter, nasty, and hard pill to allow. She’ll be gone for at least two years, and sometimes I think about how many experiences she’s going to have while I’m not around to witness them. We’ve always been in each others lives and then BAM! She won’t be around anymore.

But besides that, work and family are going really swell. I love my job; truly. It’s one of the best learning experiences I’ve ever had and it feel amazing doing something that honestly interests me and what I want to pursue as a career. I’ve gotten better at being around my family the more I’m at home. At first, I felt as though they were being frustrating for how they were treating me, but now I get it. They’re older than I remember, living at home before leaving for college. Things and situations have definitely changed, some for worse and a lot for the better. It had just been so long and the dynamics certainly have changed around this house. I still wouldn’t trade anything for my family though, I love for the people they are and how important they are to me.

I know I shouldn’t be bragging about myself, but the future is looking really bright from what I can see. I know I’ll be living at home for God knows how long, but I know it will all be worth it in the end; having money saved up, continue to work at my marketing assistant job, and move out of the house. While drinking wine like the cool kids do!

Get back to where you once belonged

To recap my weekend would be like scanning through all of the epicness that would happen in one semester and rolled up into two days. Despite having to drive through the falling snow, Valentine’s day was a day for the record books. For me, there was nothing like staying up all night, drinking all of the hard liquor at the clubs, dancing with your white friends, doing all sorts of bad things, and having the time of my life with my friends. To top it off, I hadn’t seen my favorite best friend in four months and it was so so so so so so so wonderful to finally see her, catch up, and being able to let our hair down. I can’t believe I had the energy to go out the very next night after what I had put my body through the night before. I had to though; when was my next chance to see of these people and getting back in touch with my college youth again. I don’t know if I’ll be able to go out like that next time I visit, but at least I out did my own damn self.

It was great seeing everyone I once hung out with everyday and I cherish those moment more now that I’m gone. Valentine’s day was the perfect setting for all of us getting together and doing what we do best; party and have a great time! There’s nothing quite like, good olde Peoria!

Progress Report

I graduated college on December 20th, 2013, which means that I have been living at home for one month. I’m going to break down the good and bad parts about this new transition.

The Good

  • My parents aren’t focusing me to pay rent or gas.
  • I’ll get to have my own car at the end of this month (graduation present from the folks).
  • I recently have two jobs; the first one is working in a grocery store which I’ve had since 2011, in between breaks from school. It is nice that they want me back because I’m a good employee for deli and seafood departments.
  • The second job is for a publishing company called Stonebrook Publishing and I am their new marketing assistant. My mom helped me land an interview and I couldn’t be more excited and grateful for this opportunity.
  • Being at home has taught me how to be more patient with people around me. I was always in a big hurry to get everything done so I didn’t have any stresses in my life. Stresses can be good because they are there to teach you how fucking hard life can be and how much worse things can get if you don’t stop and smell the roses every now and then.
  • My friends that are in the same boat, living with their parents. I am not alone in this struggle. And enjoy their company more now that college is over.
  • Watching my favorite shows at a reasonable time in the day.
  • Having more time to focus on my two loves; reading and writing.

The Bad

  • Having my co-workers at my first job ask me, “Do you miss being at college yet?” “Do you miss all of your friends?” “Don’t you wish you were there and not stuck HERE?” “You don’t want to work here forever, not with that degree you got, right?” “Is it weird living at home?” All of these stupid questions just bring me down and have no good merritt to them. Of course I miss college and everything about it. I knew this transition would be hard and you people are only making it worse, so quit bringing it up.
  • Also having co-workers hit on you while you’re working and they think that’s ok. No, I’m never going to date any co-worker, let alone creepy meat department guy who watches me bend over every time I drop or clean something. My ass may look great but you have a job to do, and that is not to look at what I got from behind.
  • Since my mom still doesn’t have a job, it’s been frustrating having to borrow her car while I need to work but she needs to go to meetings with her bestie while not trying to find a job.
  • Realizing you’re becoming your mom’s slave because she has no one else to boss around or tell someone what to do
  • Not having a vehicle to just go places and not be stuck at home so much.
  • Seeing all of those damn Facebook posts about starting school again and how Peoria is so great. Well, maybe not great all the time but the city definitely had its moments.
  • Not seeing my closest friends everyday, doing the same things and wishing that those times never had to end.
  • I hate feeling like the younger sibling. Yes, I know I’m the youngest but I’m 23 now and doesn’t that mean something now a days? I’m not a total screw up so quit “babying” me and treating me like I don’t know how to do anything I have been put on this earth to do.

The Ugly Truth

Overall, I have a lot to look forward to. Soon, I’ll have my own set of wheels and having this marketing assistant job is just the thing I need to make my resume look sharp and get me focused on what my career path should be. So many great things in my future that I know I shouldn’t be complaining. But it’s only been a month…can you really blame me for how much has changed in my life?

 

 

What to do when the high is -2

I feel like I have no idea what I’m doing, in general. I can’t control the inevitable of growing more like my parents and having their genetics inside of me, flowing and wandering around like atoms in space. I have my mother’s horrible, rotten teeth and my father’s facial features and there’s nothing I can do except work with what I have and fight against the bad parts. Fighting for how long, I’m still working on it. Personally I know who I am, that is not a copy-paste product of my parents. The fact is that I don’t know when I’ll get that big break, real job opportunity, or figure out when to move out of the house I’ve grown up in all my life. Those certain scenarios are up in the air, waiting to be determined. I can only hope that the fight doesn’t cause a bloody scene or make me lose all of my teeth. I just to be happy. So, why should I stress so much about what hasn’t happen yet and let it go? Damn the inevitable…Universe: 1, Lawless: 0. For now, at least.

75 down, so many more to go

Tonight, I finally completed a personal project I have been working on since June 18th 2013. Mostly consisting of poems because it was challenging for me. Personal memoirs, essays, and opinion blurds are my specialty but I never became interested in poetry. I tried to enjoy and read poetry when I was much younger. Even wrote some songs with my Fender guitar when I was still able to play. I remember taking my first creative writing class, my nerves were excited, in my senior year of high school. The poems that my teacher had to assign to us to write were as if the teacher didn’t understand the different techniques and forms exist in English language. We weren’t even writing works that we ordinarily thought of first, just steaming from the teacher’s ideas and nothing else. I was so disappointed in poetry that I wanted to give up on it forever. Until I became an extra semester senior at Bradley University. I felt like I only had one more shot to get it right; I figured, I’m an English major at a fine respected school, what’s the worst thing that could happen. Three different and unique professors diagnosed my problem over the course of 4 months, although it felt like it was overnight. I was finally realizing to turn away from writing sappy poems about lost love and wondering when everything in life went wrong and started to write the truth about myself in different styles and fresh ideas were popping into my head. It’s important to be well educated in your field, especially if it challenges your writing ability. I couldn’t be more grateful for that and for the people in college who properly showed me the way to be a well rounded writer.

Fresh Off the Presses

I graduated college on Saturday, something I never thought would happen. Let alone in 4.5 years. I’m blessed, happy, and grateful for my parents for saving their money and caring enough about my brother and I to get us through college DEBT FREE. Tears fill my eyes as I post that because I know where things could have gone horribly wrong in my time at college but it didn’t. Someone out there thought I deserved a chance to become better than I was at 18 years old. Thank you, thank you, thank YOU my parents, for allowing me the experiences, people, and memories I will never forget that make me who I really am right now.

The nerve to graduate

 

Funny how everything change,

now that all is wanted,

nothing is ever the same.

Physical diploma awaits

For those who earned it,

achieved something great,

rare, exciting, the end of things,

things coming at the ends of

party dresses and winter coats,

red cheeks and butter lips

walking down the University,

not looking for any trouble,

something to snip while

time walks right through

everyone.