Monday, May 12, 2014

My Main Character Blog Hop

My Main Character Blog Hop

So excited to participate in #MyMainCharacter Blog Hop, first one ever!

1. What is the name of your character? Is he/she fictional or a historical person?
Bristie Dolan is the name of my main character. She is a fictional character that has been with me for 11 years now.

2. When and where is the story set?
The story takes place mainly in a fictional town called Haven, a town mainly populated by different races such as Witch's, Vampire's, Werewolve's, and Shape Shifter's. 

3. What should we know about him/her?
Bristie has been a loner as long as she can remember. While raised by her loving Aunt and Uncle who never treated her as if she were odd, Bristie was looked down on by those in her community, including her Uncle's family. She'd always been different from the other kids in school and people in the small farming community where she grew up. She was so used to solitude that, when upon finding out her true heritage, the strange and social world she is thrust into is completely foreign, and she has a difficult time figuring out who it is she can really trust. 

4. What is the main conflict? What messes up his/her life?
On Bristie's 18th birthday it is revealed to her that she in, in fact, not a normal human teenager, but a Witch of ancient ancestry. She also finds out that her mother wasn't killed in a car crash as she'd always been lead to believe, but supposedly murdered by the leader of a Vampire coven by the name of Dominic De La Cruz. Bristie must unravel the mysteries of what really happened to her mother, who her father was,  why Dominic seems to want her whole family dead, and what makes her so different from other Witch's. 

5. What is the personal goal of the character?
Bristie's goal stays the same throughout the Trilogy: to find out the truth about her parents and to avenge their deaths. 

6. Is there a working title for this novel, and can we read more about it?
There is a working copy for the Trilogy, but not for the first novel. I call the Trilogy, as for now, The Underground, named after a nightclub frequented by creatures that must hide their true forms in a world dominated by humans, thus forcing them "underground." 

Thanks to Loyd Uglow for tagging me. Check out his blog! 
I don't really have anyone to tag, but I think  it would be neat if someone did it! 

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Be Brave


What does it mean to be brave? says that bravery is courage, valor. But what does that really mean?

This is just one of the many questions that Veronica Roth's Divergent Trilogy poses. I can't speculate as to the what the author was thinking, but I'd like to believe that throughout this trilogy, right up to the final words of the third book, Allegiant, Roth is trying to help us find our own answers.

This final book has come into my life at an interesting time. Recently, I've been sick, and not the regular kind. I'm the kind of sick that needed about 7 vials of blood to be drawn. Most of the tests came back negative, except for one. One test came back completely inconclusive. It wasn't negative, wasn't positive, just right in the bloody middle, literally telling us nothing. And what was this test for? Lupus. For those of you who don't know, Lupus is caused by something going all wonky in your immune system. Basically, your cells start attacking your body. It can be painful, scary, and cause minor and major complications. Lupus is really hard to diagnose because it is the great pretender. It basically shares symptoms with several other diseases, so it makes it harder to pin-point. I wont be tested for another year unless I start exhibiting other symptoms, though the aches, swollen joints, and fatigue have been enough to put me in bed already. But it has to get worse before it can get treated. Not better. It wont get better. Just treated.

I always knew I'd end up with something. I thought I'd made my peace with that. But I always thought it would be cancer. I don't know why Lupus seems so much more daunting than cancer. Probably because I've seen several of my family members, including my daddy, battle cancer. I know people can beat it just as well as they can die from it. But Lupus...there isn't a cure for that. If I have Lupus, I will have it for the rest of my life unless they find a cure. A lot of people live pretty much normal lives with minor complications. But this disease does kill people. It is a real possibility that, if this is what I have, it will end me.

I don't know what bothers me more, the fact that I have a possibly life threatening disease, or the fact that it doesn't shake to the core. When the doctor called me I'll admit, I was taken aback. My first reaction was, "What?! I'm gonna be 25 next month! That is way too young to deal with this! And why do I have to wait a year?!" The waiting is what scared me. Over analyzing everything my body does, waiting for another symptom. Waiting to get worse.

So, how is this related to Allegiant? Oh, I'll tell you.


The Divergent Trilogy follows the character of Beatrice 'Tris' Prior as she defects from her faction (the way this dystopian world is divided) of Abnegation to Dauntless. Every faction has a quality it is known for. Candor is honesty, brutal and otherwise. Erudite is the search and thirst for knowledge. Amity is to strive for a peaceful life. Abnegation is to be completely selfless. And Dauntless is to be brave.

What it truly means to be brave is probably the greatest and loudest theme in these novels. Though we also deal the themes of love and forgiveness, especially in the final novel, the one thing that jumps out at me is the theme of bravery.

If I were part of Tris' world, I would be Dauntless. I say this with conviction because bravery is one of the aspects of humanity I value the most. I will not suffer a coward, and would promptly punch anyone in the face who accused me of cowardice. But I wouldn't be the "lets just off buildings and on and off trains," kind of Dauntless. I see bravery in every faction, and I would try to be that way. I would do my best to face my fears instead of cower in front of them, as the Dauntless do. I would strive to live for others before myself, as Abnegation does. I would tell the truth, even when the truth is terrifying, like Candor. I would try to find a peaceful solution instead of resorting to unneeded violence,  like Amity. I would strive to be unafraid of my intelligence, like Erudite.

But what does it mean to be brave?

Allegiant is an incredibly heartbreaking story because of its ending. The girl we follow from book one, the one who watch morph from a clumsy, small spindly thing into a strong, solid, courageous young woman, who we all see ourselves in, makes the ultimate sacrifice. The reason it is so hard to swallow is because it was so unexpected in that moment. She was the soul narrator of the first two books, but the 3rd book switches point of view between her and the man she loves, Tobias. I, personally, thought that Roth would bring her back because, I mean, who kills one of the narrators?! But when we find out that is indeed true, Tris is dead and Tobias is left reeling, we are hit with the full force of her death.

I just finished the book a few hours ago, but a few hours is enough to give me time to mull over how I feel about what I read. At first, I'll admit, I was pissed. I felt like the character death was completely unnecessary and just gratuitous. I mean, we already knew Roth had absolutely no problem killing off her characters. Did she really need to go that far? But the more I've run that question over in my head, the clearer the answer becomes: Yes. Yes she did.

I as a reader identified so much with Tris in the first two novels, or at least I tried to. Who doesn't want to be strong, independent, a leader? Who doesn't want to start a revolution? Who wouldn't want to know they are strong enough to die for the ones that they love?

But I wasn't Tris. I don't think any of us were really mean to be Tris. We are Tobias. We are the ones who are left behind.

We learn so much about what it means to be brave from Tris, through her actions and sacrifices. But Tris is only part of a whole. The other half is the man she loved, the man she ultimately died for. Tris died when she had nothing left to teach us, and then we had to learn right along with Tobias how to let that go and move on.

I'm relatively young to have seen some of the things I have. I buried one of my best friends after she was slaughtered, and ten months later I watched the life drain from my father with my own two eyes. I know what death looks like up close. I know what it feels like to watch someones life literally slip right through your hand. I cannot tell you in words what it felt like when I felt the warmth leave my dad, his skin growing cold and stiff under my fingers while I held his hand, waiting for them to wheel him away. And I can't really explain the crushing feeling I felt when I was told Shelley was gone. The way the pain gnawed at me until I was numb. Some things aren't explainable. You have to live through it to understand it.

I am Tobias because I am flawed. I, like him, fear being damaged and rebel against it from time to time. But I am damaged, and so are you. The world, our circumstances, are constantly breaking us and reshaping us into different people. And bravery, to me, is my will to survive and go on living.

I don't know if I will ever have to make a choice like Tris made. I don't know if I will ever be asked to die for the people I love. I can only hope I would make that choice as easily as she did. But I do know what it is to lose someone, to be the one left behind to pick up the pieces and try to find a new way.

Toward the end of the novel, Tobias says, "There are so many ways to be brave in this world. Sometimes bravery involves laying down your life for something bigger than yourself, or for someone else. Sometimes it involves giving up everything you have ever known, or everyone you have ever loved, for the sake of something greater. But sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes it is nothing more than gritting your teeth through the pain, and the work of every day, the slow walk toward a better life. That is the sort of bravery I must have now."

And that is the sort of bravery I must have now, also. Whether it is surviving more death, or living with an illness, I have to continue to grit my teeth and keep moving forward. I can only hope to be another sort of brave, but I know I can be this. Lupus isn't the worst thing that could happen to me. There are worse things than being sick. There are worse things than death.

The final passage of the book goes like this: "Since I was young, I have always known this: Life damages us, every one. We can't escape that damage. But now, I am also learning this: We can be mended. We mend each other."

I want to be like Tris. That is something I will always strive for. But for now I'm okay with being like Tobias. I'm no coward. I can do this. I can mend someone, and I can let someone mend me. I can be brave.

And so can you.


Saturday, January 26, 2013

Out of My Hands

I am a writer. That, by definition, makes me the type of person who cannot keep their emotions bottled up inside for very long. I've tried, this time I really have. I've been doing it for 3 months. I've been doing it at the detriment to myself and the people who care about me. I've let people talk badly about me and have just kept my mouth shut and let it happen. I have pretended that it doesn't bother me and just smile. But I cant do that anymore.

 I am a writer. I am a pissed off writer who has something to say.

I am incredibly pissed off,  but I'm not going to use my anger as an excuse to shoot off at the mouth. I'm not going to call anyone any names. I'm not going to be childish. I'm better than that, better than those people who hurt me. Or maybe I'm not. Maybe if I'd been on that side of the fence, I wouldn't have reacted any differently. I'd like to think I could, but I don't know. People react strangely when they're hurt. And mothers react violently when their children are hurt. I can forgive that. I can let that go. But I cant stand by and let my character and the character of someone who has nothing to do with this be assassinated anymore.

I took being engaged very seriously. There is a whole album on my computer that I've buried into the depths of My Pictures full of wedding ideas. I fell in love with Zach's family and they adopted me readily. I adore his little brother and sister like they were my own. I hated that Zach and I had to break up. I HATED it. I agonized over it for months upon months. It was going to hurt everyone and destroy the happy little life I'd imagined and wanted. But I had to break up with him. I had to do it for me and for him, and someday he'll understand that. He'll forgive me, and when he falls in love again with someone who is better for him, he'll thank me.

I didn't cheat on him. No, Jeremy and I weren't "running around" on Zach. We didn't start dating till after Zach and I were already over and done with. Rumors fly through this town like wild fire and I know the person that started the rumor knew it would get back to me. Maybe that's why they did it. To hurt me. I'm not sure who believes them. I cant lie and say that I don't care, because I do. But not for me. For Jeremy.

Jeremy is so special to me. He's so easy to love and respect. I don't want people thinking that he would step between two people, two engaged people at that. Because he wouldn't. Whether he had feelings for me while I was still with Zach is neither here nor there because no one acted on anything until everything was settled. Jeremy is the type of person who inspires me to be better. I want him to respect me and admire me the way I respect and admire him. The thought that people are saying something so horrible about him because of's a horrible feeling. He deserves better than that.

I hate the fact that Zach hates me. After two and a half years of sharing our lives with each other, our families, I didn't think it would be like this. But I understand. If hating me makes him feel better, he can hate me. But I don't hate him. I may not be in love with him anymore. I may not want to be his wife. But I will never hate him. We had some wonderful times and some of my favorite memories involve him and his family. I'm not sorry that it's over, but I am sorry for everyone who was hurt because I had to say goodbye.

I think some people are just genuinely unhappy with their lives and have to bring other people down to make themselves feel better. I try my best not to be that type of person. I simply do the best I can and make the choices I know that I can live with.

I'm not going to apologize for the way I feel about Jeremy and I know he wont apologize for the way he feels about me. If someone expected him to, as non-confrontational as he is, he might just punch them in the wiener. That's how much he cares about me. It's different. What he and I have is different. And if I keep bottling up how I feel about the situation with Zach, I'm going to end up hurting him because he hurts when I hurt. I don't want to do that. Jeremy is the last person on earth who deserves to be hurt.

Zach wasn't perfect. I had my reasons for wanting out. I now have some fear issues because of things that went on between me and him that I have to work out.

I'm scared of making memories. But I'm not going to let that hold me back. Jeremy deserves better than that. And you know what? So do I.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

A Boyfriend? What? Q&A

First, I am going to frankly and candidly address some of the questions/statements I already know I'm going to hear. I'm heading you all off at the pass. Secondly, I'm going to give a small explanation that I don't owe anyone, just cause.  This first part shall be in Q&A format.

Q: But what about Zach?
A: What about him? You know nothing about my previous relationship. You know nothing about what has gone on after that relationship ended. If you did, you wouldn't be asking that question.

Q: Don't you think it's a little soon?
A: I was worried about this, to be honest. Then I talked to one of my favorite people, my cousin Bonnie, and she said something very wise. "There is no time limit on happiness." And there is no time limit to moving on. Again, you know zilch about my previous relationship nor how long he and I had been having problems. We were over a long time before we actually pulled the plug. It doesn't matter if you think it's too soon, it matters if I and Jeremy think it's too soon. We don't. :)

Q: What does Zach think about it?
A: No, the real question is: Alison, do you care what Zach thinks about this?
Yes, if I'm going to be honest. I never wanted to hurt him. But I'm also not going to put my life and happiness on hold due to him. He's done some questionable things since we've been broken up and he hasn't exactly been honest. So, yes I care. But it isn't going to stop me from living my life the way I see fit.

Q: What does your mother think?
A: She thinks I'm 24 years old and can make my own choices, that's what she thinks! She loves me and wants me happy, that's all that she cares about. I'd tell her the same exact thing I'm telling you and she knows it: mind. your. business.

Q: Are you just afraid of being alone?
A: Absolutely not. There isn't actually very much that I am afraid of. I could be alone if I wanted to, but I don't want to and I don't have to be. Why force myself not to be with someone I genuinely care for when there isn't anything that's really standing in our way? I know who I am and Jeremy isn't the type who would want to change me. He likes my silly, candid, and abrasive self. He doesn't want me to be anyone but me. And he gets that people change and grow and we just want to see where this could go. There isn't anything wrong with that so please, don't try to make it so.

Q: Dating another younger guy, huh?
A: Yep. He's 2 and a half years younger than I am. Hey, I've done worse okay? I used to like them way too old for me. Pick your poison.

Q: Well, I'm Zach's friend too and I don't think this is right, so I don't think we should be friends anymore.
A: That just shows you and I were never friends in the first place. Don't let the door hit ya where the good Lord split ya! Bye!

I'm going to be 100% honest with you, reader: I am scared to death. I'm scared what people are going to say, if people are going to give me a hard time about this, and I'm worried about how Zach will take it. Contrary to popular belief, I do care for Zach very very very much...I just don't want to marry him. We are  not meant to be, at least not that I can see right this second. I never wanted to hurt him and I still don't, but if not hurting him means I have to put mine and Jeremy's happiness on hold, I'm not willing to do that. I can't live my life for someone else, that wouldn't be fair. I'm not going to ask Zach to make his decisions with my feelings in mind. He isn't my fiancee anymore, but that doesn't mean I don't want him to be my friend someday. I truly don't want to hurt him, but sometimes that just cant be helped.

And yeah, I'm scared that I'll get hurt. I really hate the idea of another failed relationship under my belt. But if I let fear stop me from giving my heart another shot, I'll never get anywhere. You can't let the fear of pain and heartbreak stop you from letting yourself open up to the possibility of loving someone again. That isn't even living, really. I don't know if Jeremy will still want to be with me in six months and that's okay. He may wake up tomorrow and go, "Oh heck no, this girl is a hot mess," and be on his way. I cant promise I wont change my mind either. But it's a risk we're willing to take. I'm willing to gamble on him, on the possibility of an us.

Here is a question I promise no one will ask. No one will even consider asking it because most people on concentrate on the negative in a situation.

Q: What makes Jeremy Worsham so special?

The answer is simple: He's different, and his kind of different and my kind of different are the same kind of different. He gets why I cry when one of my favorite characters die. In some cases, he'll be crying right along with me. He doesn't try to grab my butt in public after I ask him not to, and he doesn't tell me I'd be lost without him. He knows I wouldn't be. He LIKES that I'm completely capable and that, if I'm mad, I could possibly beat him up. And oh, how he makes me laugh. He truly makes me smile, and I cant remember the last time I just smiled for no reason.

But most importantly, Jeremy inspires me. I haven't always made the best judgement calls and in the past I've had a hard time being in relationships. Sometimes I still throw up this wall and he can just see it on my face, I've completely shut him out. But that's when he just hugs me and tells me he'll wait me out until I'm okay. Jeremy wants me to be better then I ever have been. He makes me want to stop making the same stupid mistakes and just be happy instead of always fighting it. He makes me want to take down those stupid walls I've built to defend myself. He isn't someone I need or want to hide from. It's a nice feeling.

I'm happy. He's happy. So lets just see what happens, neh?

We're just starting this thing, we have no idea where (if anywhere) this is gonna go. The only thing I am asking for is your support. My having a relationship isn't going to affect your life. It isn't going to impede on your day to day and it truthfully has nothing to do with you. I have a huge problem with people getting mad at me over my choices when it has nothing to do with them. You don't have to like every choice I make. I doubt I like every choice you make. If your worried about me, thank you from the bottom of my heart,  but put that worry where it belongs. Respect the fact that I've earned the right to be wrong every now and then, and if I am wrong about this, I'll own it later. But for right now, I have a boyfriend. I do. And no amount of meanness or anger on anyone else's part is going to change that. I'm pretty stubborn like that. Respect me and I'll respect you, that's always been my number 1 rule (besides after number 2, you always flush!) and I hope people will understand what I'm asking.

All the people that matter to us are excited for us. People think we're a great couple and see how happy we make each other. I think in time all the skeptical people will see that. And then there are the people who are going to talk badly about me, accuse me of cheating on Zach and all that other ridiculousness, and to you I say this: KICK ROCKS. I have better things to do with my time then to deal with false accusations and bull. I didn't cheat on Zach. Zach didn't cheat on me. We just ended. And all endings spark new beginnings.

This is the start of something new. And, of course, since it's my life, this should be very interesting.


Sunday, December 16, 2012

This Little Light of Mine...

A few days ago, something happened made me take a minute to stand still. I was forced to sit and think about what it means to have faith, what kind of world I really live in, and whether any of us are ever truly safe. I had to face, not for the first time in my life, the fact that evil really exists and needs to be battled. As an individual, I was horrified, angered, disgusted, saddened, and moved in a way I haven't been in a very long time. And as a member of this society and this nation, I had to assess myself and understand that until we face the true issues and reasons why things like this happen, we'll never make a bit of difference. And that is simply unacceptable. 

I don't know anyone from Newton, Connecticut. I don't know anyone who was directly involved in the situation, but every time I turned on the television I was moved to tears and my heart broke over and over again. I will not pretend to know what it feels like to lose a child. I don't know what it's like to be a parent. But I am a friend, and I know what it feels like to lose someone you love to a horrendous and senseless act of violence. I know what it does to you and the road it takes you down over and over again, and on December 14th, I was reminded of that place. I was reminded of the destination I ended up after I lost Shelley and I remember just sitting there and saying, "I don't know what to do." And it took me months to figure out there there wasn't anything I really could do except keep breathing while I still had breath. 

How do you convince a 7 year old that they are safe at school after they just saw their classmates shot and killed? Children all over America lost a little bit of that magical spark of innocence as the news of this tragedy spent and parents all over America were horrified by the fact that their kids might not really be safe anywhere. The question I've heard over and over on the news is, "How do we show the kids that they're safe? How do we make them feel safe?" 

The long and short of it can't. Not without lying to them. You can't tell a 7 year old, "Well honey, I can't tell you that you'll be safe. I can't tell you that you can go see a movie without getting shot. I can't tell you that you can go to your elementary school and nothing bad will happen. I can't say that someday you'll go to college and no one will open fire in your classroom. I can't guarantee you that someday, someone won't break into your apartment and kill you in your sleep." No, you can't tell a 7 year old that. You have to make them feel comfortable, convince them that everything will be alright. These harsh realities are burdens that us adults should bear alone. Should being the operative word here.  

Things like this shouldn't happen. They just shouldn't and it pisses me off that they do. But the stone cold truth is that it does happen and it will continue to happen no matter how many precautions we take. Go ahead and take away the guns. People will find other ways to kill if they want. Tighten security at the schools. People will find other places to kill if they want. We live in a fallen world and evil isn't something that we can shut our eyes to and pretend it isn't there. The killing of 27 women and children and the death of a possibly deranged and broken  20 year old is proof of this. It would be easy to sit here with righteous anger and wish that young and broken man to burn in hell for the horrendous thing that he did...but wouldn't that just make us part of the problem? 

One of the victims was named Emilie Parker. She was a beautiful little blue eyed six year old girl with her whole life ahead of her. Her father spoke to the media to honor his little girl and tell the world how much this baby was loved and loved in return. He then said something I will never, ever forget. He expressed his condolences to the family of the shooter, understanding that they were going through a nightmare as well. He said that he wasn't angry. Of all people, this man had every right to curse the very name of the gunman and has every reason to hate him for eternity. But Robbie Parker gets it. 

The shooters reasons don't matter. They truly don't, I agree with that. I don't care why he did what he did, I just know that he did it. I don't know anything about this guy. I don't know if he was picked on as a kid and felt like nobody loved him, or if he was abused. I don't know if he was seriously ill and his family and friends failed to encourage him to seek help. I have no idea what the circumstances of this kids life was. The only thing I know is that guy must have been filled with a kind of hate that is absolutely unimaginable to me. I cannot fathom killing my own mother, going to an elementary school and killing 20 babies and 6 women, and then turning the gun on myself. I'm not the type to jump on the "demon possessed" bandwagon...but...I fully believe this kid fought a spiritual battle and lost.

I don't think stricter gun laws are going to keep me safe. It couldn't hurt, but I'm being realistic. I also don't think stricter laws about how to handle the mentally ill is going to make me any safer either. Also couldn't hurt, but seriously. I think there is only one thing that we as a society and a nation can do that will make any dent on keep tragedies like this from happening again: change ourselves. 

Where there is God, there is hope. I know when things like this happen, it seems like we live in a time where depravity reigns king, but that's just the devil jabbering in your eye and dancing before your eyes. This was not of God. God is the abundance of joy. He is everything good. And He is my King. So maybe instead of just talking about Jesus, it's time to start acting like Him. Sure, we're human and we're flawed, but at the heart of us I still believe that we can be creatures of great beauty. God didn't put me on earth to be meek and to turn my back on my fellow man. He didn't put me here to let myself be filled with hate and be desensitized. God gave us, as His people, the ability to change. 

And it starts one person at a time. I've held in a lot of hurt and anger over the past three years. Not hating someone who took away someone you love is easier said than done, take it from someone who knows. But since what happened on Friday, I've found myself praying for the man who took Shelley away for the first time. I pray that he finds God and that God opens his eyes and lets him understand what he did. I hope he'll find the strength to be a man and admit what he did and possibly give us some answers. And finally, I pray that somehow, some way, God will help me forgive him because I need to. Forgiveness isn't for him, it's for me. It's to take a burden off my heart, not his. He will gain nothing by my forgiveness. He'll still be sitting in his cell remembering what he did, hopefully for the rest of his life. But I can't be apart of the change I want to see in the world if I am unwilling to take that step myself.

All in all, I don't really have any answers. Sometimes I still think about Shelley, and I still say, "I don't know what to do." I don't have any words that is going to make anyone feel safe. But I can give you this piece of advice: don't worry so much about the fact that you aren't safe, and don't be afraid. Fear isn't going to do you any good and you can't wear it like a bulletproof vest. Death is the great neutral party and the great equalizer. You can't hide from it, so there isn't any use in being afraid that it might steal you away in the night. But what you can do is live your life in a way that when your time does come around, you can look back and say, "Yeah, I can live with that." Teach your children to love, not hate. Be up-lifters, not bullies. And as they grow and start to realize that safety is a myth, tell them that there are worse things in life than not being safe. There are worst things than dying. Why spend your whole life living in fear and being a stain on the world when you could help paint a mural that proves that humanity isn't completely hopeless? I know the world seems like a scary place, but don't let yourselves be blinded to the wonders of it all. To the wonders of life. 

I'm only 24 and I'm not exactly anyone special. I am flawed and fully faulted, but I can at least say to some degree of surety that I am not a blight on humanity. I refuse to be a part of the problem, so I have no choice but to be a part of the cure. Please, be a beacon of light in a world that seems a little darker now. Instead of wearing armor made of hatred and fear, wear armor of hope and faith. This is how you save lives. This is how you make the world a safer and better place. Help the children of this world understand what "This Little Light of Mine," is really about.

Maybe there is an answer. A very simple yet incredibly far reaching answer. Love. 


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

An Explanation I Don't Owe: A Birthday Blog

In about twenty minuets, I will have seen the 15th of November for the 24th time. I usually write about the ways my life has changed over the past year, how I feel about said changes, and maybe even throw in a few life lessons. But this year there is just too much to say.

I've noticed that as I get older, life changes all the quicker. It's a daily thing, an hourly thing, and I have given up on keeping up. Time has a way of going on whether or not you're ready and that's something I've had to come to terms with. It seems like I climb one mountain just to be met with another. They say God gives us trials to make us stronger. I guess He wants me to be a super hero.

One of my biggest changes of this year happened in the past two weeks, and I really don't want to talk about it. It isn't one of those changes I can just sit here and impart some random bit of wisdom from and move on. I have to explain why this change had to happen. It's an explanation I don't owe anyone, not really, but I'm going to give it anyway. No, I don't want to talk about it...but I need to. And more often than not, what we need and what we want are two separate deals.

Two years ago, I thought by the time I was 24 I'd be married to the person I wanted so badly to be the love of my life. I was so happy to be engaged to someone I thought was absolutely perfect for me. I thought everything was going to be so different and it killed me to watch it all fall apart so slowly that I saw it coming from a mile away. I fought it, I fought it so hard because I wanted it so bad. But what we need and what we want...well, you know the drill.

In the beginning, it was as easy as breathing. I was hurting so badly from the loss of my daddy and my relationship before him coming to an end. I felt like I was losing so much and when he came along, I gained an entire new life. It felt like everything was perfect for the first little while, or at least I wanted it so much that I ignored the warning signs. I went against my instincts, knowing that we were too young and it was all too fast. Too much. Too everything.

After a while we just stayed together because we felt like we'd be more miserable being apart. I can't speak for him, but it was slowly killing me inside. We weren't kind to each other, we both split the blame right down the middle. The day I'd finally had enough, the moment I handed him his ring back was one of the hardest things that I've ever had to do. But we deserved better.

Eat. Pray. Love. is one of my favorite books and one of my favorite movies. There is a point in the memoir/movie when Liz realizes that her relationship is over and it's all thanks to a visit to Rome. She went to the Augustiam. It's a scene that talks about ruin, brokenness, and it's a scene that I always relate to. I have always felt like something is broken inside me, something I've never been able to fix no matter how hard I've tried. I've always thought it was such a bad thing, but as I've gotten older I've come to think as Liz does, that ruin is a gift. It is the road to transformation. I am constantly changing and moving and growing and probably becoming a little more broken and a little closer to fixed with every day I draw breath.

"Both of us deserve better than to stay together because we're afraid we'll be destroyed if we don't."

People change, and sometimes we change apart instead of change together. I transformed in different ways than he did and we just couldn't be together anymore. We deserved better than the hurt we were feeling. As much as we split the blame, I don't even think it was either of our faults. Sometimes there is no one to blame, things just happen. It wasn't the we fell out of love. Our love didn't have the right kind of foundation to begin with. By the end we just stopped talking and stopped listening and stopped caring. And I just couldn't do it anymore.

I'm 24 years old now. Or at least I will be at 6:52 this evening. I'm old enough to know when to let go. It didn't kill me, it didn't break me. It was just another moment of change that I've had to live through. But I know in the very depths of my soul that we made the right choices for us.

I miss him. I will miss him for the rest of my life. And even if he decides that he cant be my friend, I will always be his. I will always want the very best for him. I hope someday he finds someone who will love him so much better than I ever could. I hope he finds someone who stirs his soul the way I feel like he deserves. It's then he'll realize she makes him feel like I never could.

My explanation was kind of drawn out, but it really is very simple: I believe in a love that most people believe only exist in novels or movies. I believe that someday I will find love, and it will be the kind of thing that people write about. I believe in it and I deserve it. And I wont settle for less than that. I wont settle for anything less than a love that can overcome even death. God has shown me how to believe in something like that, even if it is risky.

Not exactly the usual Happy Birthday blog, but eh, I'm in a melancholy mood.

Have a great day everyone, and do me a favor? Believe.


Sunday, November 4, 2012

In This Town of Halloween

Since I have a few minutes before I have to leave for work, I've decided to bless all you readers (the whole one of you, love you Grady!) with my incredibly hilarious story about how I eneded my Halloween night by filling out a witness statement. Grady, you were there, so you know the story, but maybe (just maybe) someone else will actually read this and find it as entertaining as I did the night that it happened. And yes, I realize I remember an incredible amount of detail from this event, but I was paying very close attention because, frankly, I didn't want to go to jail. Alright, here goes!

So after the candy was gone and Grady and I arrived back at my house after going on a little jaunt, we watched Hocus Pocus (best. movie. ever!) with Jeremy and Justin. Justin left soon after the movie was over and we three that were left quickly became bored and unhappy at the fact that it was 10 O'clock on Halloween night and we were inside watching the Science Fiction channel. So we did what any other young people in their twenties would do; we went walking.

As soon as we stepped off my property, we notice this insanely large group of teenagers in the middle of the road. When they saw us, they scattered. This was the first sign that they were up to a little Halloween mischief. We three quickly realized we'd probably made a mistake in going walking on Halloween night seeing as all the delinquents were probably out egging houses and we kind of looked like likely suspects. I mean, Jeremy and I were wearing large hooded sweatshirts and Grady was in my Panda hat. We looked like delinquents.

We were headed toward Jeremy's house when I realized we were walking with a small group of kids. Grady and Jeremy both had the same reaction to the situation we found ourselves in; head down, walk faster, get out of the situation. Me being who I am had a different reaction; get a good look at the kids, talk as much as possible, and remember details.

This being said, I need to make a side note. I generally don't like narks. My parents always told me that there was nothing worse than  rat. I dunno if they were trying to prepare me for a possible future in organized crime or what, but yeah, in my home you did not rat out your fellow man. I totally understood and agreed with this point of view and would not have ratted out these kids under any circumstances, except one of these kids made a fatal mistake. Wanna know what it was? Oh I'll tell ya.

So the kid we were walking next to was about Jeremy's height, Hispanic, and had on glasses and a ball cap. He told me that he was eighteen and from the next town over. He inquired about my age and I told him I was just a few weeks shy of 24 years old. This is when the fatal mistake was made. This little moron had the nerve to look at me and say, "You're old as f***!"


Yep. He went there. Cuss word and all. What did I do, you ask? Well my first instinct was the punch the kid in the baby maker. Or, you know, throw him into someones back yard that housed a pit bull or something. But I kept my cool. I had a feeling my chance for revenge would come. And it did, in the form of a short kid in an orange hoodie and dark Justin Bieber hair.

"I'm gonna egg this house!" yelled Bieber.

"Don't you EFFING dare!" I yelled back, stopping in the middle of the road and pointing at the kid. "We three are over the age of eighteen and will get into more trouble than you are worth! Throw that egg and you WILL rue the day!"  I volleyed a few more threats his way and that's when Jeremy, Grady, and I decided to walk a little faster. The idiot was going to throw an egg at a house that's lights were on!!!!!! Why!!!!!! They're awake, eff tard!

When we got to the stop sign, that's when we heard it. CRACK! "Lets power walk!" I said, and we were gone. As Grady and I stood in Jeremy's yard waiting for him to get done inside, I watched these kids walk toward the town park. I've got pretty great eyesight (better than perfect woot!) so I could see them get into a dark car and turn it on. Jeremy came outside and we headed in the opposite direction.

"When this car drives by, lets get the plates. It's those dumbass kids. I have a feeling we're going to need this information." I thought this because while Jeremy was inside, we'd seen a cop driving around spotlighting. Someone had called the cops on these kids. Great. You bet your bottom dollar that when that car drove by, we got the first three digits of the plate.

At that point, we probably should had just given up and gone home. I mean, we KNEW the cops were gonna hassle us. But I think at that point we were so bored, we kind of welcomed it. At least I did. I was out for blood. Well, revenge at least. That a-hole called me old.

No sooner did we step onto my street did we see the mysterious car drive past us again. Behind them was a police cruiser. Instead of following the car, however, the cop put on his lights and pulled over next to us. When he opened the door to shine a large flashlight in our eyes, I pointed down the street and yelled, "They went that way!" Jeremy and Grady told me to shut up, that I sounded guilty, but I didn't want them to get away! Argh, the frustration!

"What are you guys doing?" asked Officer Buzz Cut

"Walking. Cause we're bored," I replied.

"How old are you three?"

"23, 23, 21." I noticed by this time that I was the only one talking.

"Oh!" The Officer suddenly became much nicer. "Have ya'll seen any kids running around?"

"YES!" And I quickly explained our story. I told him the break lights in the distance were the snot nosed kids who were doing the throwing of the egg, gave him the plate number, and watched him hop in his car and take off into the night.

We continued walking and not long after that, we saw lights in the distance. The cop had cauht the little buggers! We walked on in glee, but when we made it to the high school, we were once again stopped by Officer Buzz Cut. He asked us a series of questions about what we saw in which we all quickly figured out that I'd gathered more detail than my comrads. He then asked us to fill out a witness statement. We all reluctantly agreed. I wasn't too thrilled about it being on record that I was narking, but my lust for revenge meant more to me than my pride as a past fellow delinquent.

And so our night ended with us sitting in the front yard waiting for the Officer to come back around and pick up our witness statements. We talked about the evening, pondered on the fate of the eggers, and I was satisfied by the score I'd settled.

I learned three things this recent All Hallows Eve: 1. Hocus Pocus is much funnier as an adult and never gets old. 2. You know you're too old for Halloween romping when you start getting kids in trouble for making mischief. and 3. I really don't like to be called old.

Hope this made you giggle a little. Cheerio!