30 04 2008

My internet recently has been especially spastic, so my online time has been relegated to necessaries (email, the blog my college friends share, wedding stuff), but I’ve been missing blogging, so now that it seems to be stable for the moment, I thought I’d write something. Sooo…

Southside has been hopping, and finding time to get everything done in my life is a chore. Part of the problem is that I’ve never learned the art of only committing to things I can feasibly be a part of. So, I try and give a little time here (the Obama office), a little there (spending time with my family/friends), and never have enough time (or maybe more appropriately, energy) to go around. I find that extremely frustrating. I want to be able to do it all. Some people seem to have discovered the art, a particular flute playing friend in Seattle for example. But it’s not in the cards for me yet.

I did get to play with some of my new Pampered Chef toys the other day. I made mini-pecan tarts that I actually didn’t see I was supposed to put butter in the filling, but they were amazing anyway. And little lemon flavored spritz cookies that are cool shapes because of the new cookie press I got. I’m not sure it was worth getting, but it makes me happy any. And my garden is starting to take shape. I hope none of my plants were seriously injured because I left them out Monday night (not last night when it got down to freezing thank goodness). So far they seem to be fine. I’m starting to fear that the patio is going to feel too crowded with everything I’m planting. Oh, well, I can always downsize later if I need to. So far I have basil, lavender, cornflowers, rosemary, pansies, violets, and hyacinth. I planted some morning glories and want to plant some poppies, forget-me-nots, and bachelor buttons (which I actually think are the same thing as cornflower?? but might turn out to be a different color than the ones I started inside)

My wedding to do list is a mile long with little stupid things to get done. My other to do list is shorter, but more important.

ok, off to bed.

OH! quick rant. Since when can an apartment complex’s office close 4 hours early on rent day??? I’m going to be seriously pissed if they charge me the $75 late fee when I take my check in at the crack of dawn 8:00 tomorrow morning.


Like Abby said

28 02 2008

I should post more.  Blog that get neglected are sad.  Poor, poor blog.  There there, it’s alright I still love you.  I just…. haven’t been myself lately.

So, I did not get the admission job.  I’m very interested to see who they pick.  Reasons it is good I didn’t get the job:

Now I can be in Urinetown if I’m cast
I won’t have to travel my first year of marriage
I can take the whole week before and after my wedding off!
It would have been a fairly high stress job, now I can find one that hopefully is less stressful

I’ve spent the last few days moving into the new apartment.  I miss my girls alot.  It’s so weird not seeing them.

Last night I went down to my cousin’s house and went over the edits I made on her husband’s manuscript with him and had dinner with both.  I helped edit a book that’ll be published soon!  I’ve been trying to make a conscious effort to get out of the apartment and see people every day.  Yesterday I turned in a resume, picked up an app to be a server for the restaurant that’s opening at the co-op in a month or so, and picked up a sub certificate application.  I also sent in my resume/application to 3 other jobs recently.  I check all the job sources that I can think of every day, so I can’t think of anything else that I could be doing to find a job at this point.  I think at this point I’m thinking that I’ll sub and waitress until the wedding and then look harder again.  Unless one of my other leads comes through.

My apartment is becoming beautiful! 🙂  Can’t wait for Mike to come home and see it.  He’s in Colorado on spring break.  Oh, and for the first time I have a close friend who’s pregnant.  Very exciting!

[break for visit from Miriam. yay!]

Now I’m off to see my niece in her track meet.


11 09 2007

Becca and I are moving on Saturday.  It’s official.  There was doubt cast on that plan yesterday, but it’s been cleared up today.  This is very, very good because we made an anouncement at church on sunday, and we arranged for a van.  I of course will not be there.  I’ll be leaving early on Thursday for Oregon and my friend Abby’s wedding.  Mike’s coming with me! 🙂  I don’t want to be worrying about the move while I’m on “vacation”.  So I have alot to do so that all my stuff can be moved without my input or supervision.  Thanks to Erini, I’m taking tomorrow off to get it all done.

Abby’s getting married! (not my roommate, a friend from high school)  I’m a bride’s maid and I’m singing.  I found out last night that I’m not going to be able to rehearse with my accompanist Darren until right before the wedding.   He’s also doing some harmony on the choruses, so there’s all those elements to piece together, my voice, the piano, his voice. Scary. scary. scary.  Oy.  Luckily, Darren’s an old high school friend and we’ve been singing together for a long time.  It’s just scary for me because the accompaniment usually affects how I use my voice.  I’m sure it will go fine.

Living in the inbetween

6 09 2007

Music: Bubbly by Colbie Caillat (It’s been running and running through my head for days)

My very good friend and former roommate Abby recently posted about being intentional on her blog.  I admire that, and I’ve thought alot about it too, have times when I feel like my blog is a bit useless, but intentionality in this matter is not for me.  I’ve come to realize that it’s ok for my blog to be mediocre.  It helps my family and friends keep up with me and it gives me a venue to tell my story.  I do have a personal journal, but there’s something about sharing myself with others that creates a motivation that my private journal can’t generate.  But I’m very excited to see what direction Abby’s blog goes.

I have been a ball of nerves lately.  I’ve been anxious and distracted and worked up.  I’m a terribly impatient person when it comes to life changes.  And some big ones are coming up.  We just found out today that we should finally be able to move next weekend.  I unfortunately will be in Oregon, but the girls have been gracious enough to agree to move without me.  Bless them.  So at least I know now when it’s going to happen.  That’s a start to me calming down.  Now comes all the work of getting ready.  I have been working some in the past few weeks, but there’s much much more to do.  I can’t wait to be in the new condo!  My own room!  A deck!

If only moving was the only thing looming in my future.  I haven’t written for a while.   I’ve been avoiding myself in this medium.  The me that comes out in this blog tends to talk about Mike, about my journey through a broken engagement and on to new hope.  It’s all so good.  Mike’s home and it’s been a blessing to be able to put my arms around him and look in his eyes and remember the ways I love his actual presence in my life.  Things are serious.  Things are happy and exciting and joyful.  In equal measure there are times when things are terrifying and painful and uncertain.  I keep thinking there’s going to be a breaking point, a time when the pairing of pain and pleasure break apart and I can move forward with joy and leave behind the anxiety.  So the question that’s been rattling around is “should I be going so far down this path if it terrifies me this much?”  And I know the answer is yes.  I feel it even more strongly after talking with my pastor and hearing him encourage me to trust that answer.  The “problem” is vulnerability.  My grief bulks.  But it is a necessary risk to take to be happy, being vulnerable.

I’m sure I sound like a broken record.  I’m sure I’ve said all those things already somewhere in this blog.  But the problem is that it doesn’t just go away.  I guess I just have to trust that life has something better for me than repeated rejection.

And little by little it gets better and worse.  Stronger grief paired with stronger faith.  How easily pain mingles with pleasure.

I’ve been holding on so tightly to this part of my story.  My pain, my betrayal.  Because I’m young and it makes me feel more important.  More valid.  But slowly I’ve been turning it into just another part of the storyline.  My past, not my present.  So hopefully you won’t be hearing much more about it.  For my sake if not yours.

An update of sorts

16 08 2007

I just finished reading “The Five People You Meet in Heaven” by Mitch Albom.  A short read that’s a bit overly sentimental, but I liked it, and it really is well written.  A reacurring thought as I read it was ‘I bet alot of people turn their noses up at this book’.  But I am no literary snob.  I tend to react to books intuitively instead of analitically.

Anyways, I didn’t bring another book to read, so I thought I’d blog even though I risk waking Liz up with the click and clatter of the keys.  She’s sleeping on the futon next to me.

Hum, where to start.  Work’s going well.  Things have been in pretty constant flux all summer with no two weeks the same.  But this week and the one before I went to Oregon have been the least stressful because I’ve only had the girls while Erini has been taking care of Ray on her own.  I have both girls on a sweet schedule of two naps per day each for at least an hour.  Yes!  Liz is sleeping more than a half an hour at a time!  Those naps also happen at the same time, so I actually get a break although I have to stay upstairs and be vigilant about being quite so as not to wake Liz up.  At least she’s sleeping on a solid surface now instead of in her swing.  But the calmness that I’ve created ends on Monday when Rose’s time with me ends and I get Ray back.  Tomorrow’s my last day with Rose 😦  I’m going to miss her o so much.  It will be interesting to see how I can mesh Liz and Ray’s schedules.  And to see how well they play together.  But at least my summer of too many babies and too many changes will be over.  Hurrah.

We’re still waiting to find out when we can move.  Unfortunately it also sounds like the slight possibility that we’d have condos across from each other isn’t going to pan out, which also means that we’re going to have to wait longer for the second condo.  It also means that we’re going to have to decide who gets the top floor… which is also the group that gets to move in first.  Tricky.  I just want to move already!

Well, the girl’s are waking up, so I guess this is it for now.

Goshen for the weekend

30 06 2007

I’m doing laundry the “old fashioned” way, one load at a time.  No I’m not doing it by hand, but it’s weird having to switch loads so much and spend a whole day doing laundry.  Also my stupid cat must have slept in my hamper because everything is still covered in cat hair even after it comes out of the drier.

My post almost started “Home for the weekend”, almost.  But Goshen isn’t home.  Evanston is.  Or wait.  Where is home?  If “home is where the heart” is, Guatamala might be the strongest contender.  But then there’s my family (mostly in Goshen) and my flatmates (right now, all over the globe).  Honestly, home is such a vague notion for me.  It has been since we left this area in 5th grade.  One of my strongest desires is not to struggle with what to call home.  I want to feel settled in one place, with my strongest ties in that place.

I love coming to Goshen, but it’s always a struggle making time for everyone and having the right priorities.  It’s not quite as hard when Mike’s not here, because there’s not the draw to spend all my time with him, but it’s still difficult.  I want to spend plenty of time with my family, but there are alot of friends to see as well.  My parent, my two nieces, and my baby nephew went to the zoo today.  I really wish I had gone with them.  But I didn’t and instead got my laundry done, had lunch with a friend and hit up the 50% off sale at Goodwill for some silverware for when Becca and I move into our condo (Abby owns all the silverware).

Work is stressful.  But it’s getting better and Erini is working out really well.  It’s so nice having someone I’m comfortable with and who I know isn’t going to flake out on me.  I was dreading the summer with the other woman we had hired because she was tiresome to be around all day for a variety of reason, and I’m so thankful she quite.  I’m not usually so turned off by a person, so I was surprised/concerned about my response to her.  But she’s gone, and for the most part I’m just not worrying about it. The really interesting thing was that the girls didn’t like her either (especially Liz) which I just chalked up to her being a stranger, but they’ve taken to Erini alot better.

Ray (my new little boy) is growing on my quite a bit.  At first I was skeptical about having a boy to work with since I’d been with the girls for so long, but I think mostly I was reacting to the idea of learning to know any new baby.  I’m going to miss Rose so very much.  She’s my little sweetheart.  I hope to visit her in Seattle sometime next year when I go out to see some of my friends, but I realize she probably won’t remember me!  More than likely she will never really remember who I am.  I find that very strange, since I’ll never forget her, and she means so much to me.  It makes me sad.

Abby (Oregon friend who’s getting married) changed her date to the 14th!  So I’m going to Oregon twice in a month’s time.  And Mike’s going with me 😀  Grrr.. but it’s expensive even for a short weekend trip.  Sigh.  I get to go try on bride’s maid’s dresses tomorrow though so that’s exciting.

Alright I think I’m done with random updates.

No word on the co-op, although we’re supposed to go to a co-op meeting on the 9th so that people can meet us if they want.  the 9th also happens to be the half-way mark for Mike’s trip.  Can’t come fast enough.

Not obligated

18 06 2007

Now that I’ve released myself from feeling like I should blog, I really want to.  So maybe that last post was a lie.  Also things have calmed down in my life a bit (sort of).  Things that have been happening recently:

I started working with all three babies.  We hired a woman to help me, but she quite suddenly this weekend after just 4 day.  That was stressful.  But my friend Erini agreed today to fill in for the rest of the summer.  Thankyou so much Erini!  You’re a gem.

We’ve pretty much been accepted for the coop that we’re trying to get into, so now it’s just a process of waiting for two of the units to open up (only one needs to open up for us to move since Abby’s gone and we can squeeze 3 women into one condo for a little while).  This could happen any time.  But there’s complications with the one that’s supposed to be opening up soonest.  The woman who lives there is having trouble getting into her new condo.  So it could be next week or it could be in two months.  I’m bad at this sort of unknown waiting.  Grrrr…

Also, a friend of mine from H.S. (also named Abby) just got engaged and is planning on getting married in Oregon sometime in September.  She asked me to be a bride’s maid 🙂  She was going to be one of my bride’s maids, which reminds me, I STILL have her bride’s maid’s dress in my closet at my parent’s house… I’ll have to remember to take it this summer.  Any ways, the complication is that she and her fiance set the date for September 29, the exact same day that I’m supposed to be in my friend Fallon’s wedding!  Abby and Edder (short for Edwardo I think… hum, should probably know this) are considering changing the date of their wedding.  I’m not the only reason, but I’m part of it.  How amazing is that!

Their engagement got me thinking about Mike and I (big surprise there right), but for good reason.  Abby and I told each other about our perspective new relationships in the same phone conversation just over a year ago.  She and Edder have been dating just over a month less than Mike and I.  It’s been interesting to watch both of the relationships grow and compare notes.  I’m a bit jealous of Abby that she’s reached this stage, one that I definitely want to be at, but at the same time, I’m really grateful for the fact that Mike and I need to take things slower.  We’re not at the same place in our lives, he’s still in school, and most of our relationship has developed from a distance.  I’m glad we can’t move as quickly as Abby and Edder could because it would be too fast for me.  I’d be dealing with alot more fear.

A group of interns has come to Reba (our local church) to learn about intentional community.  It’s been fun to start getting to know some of them.  Three of the guys live in the apartment above us and they invited our apartment (unfortunately Abby and Jess couldn’t come due to the fact that they were hopping the pond and spending two weeks in England) to dinner on Friday.  They served Becca and me an amazing meal of Indian curry, eggplant stirfry, and a milk and rice pudding with saffron in it!  Pretty impressive given the fact that they hadn’t had any food in their apartment the day before.

Sacrifice for Gain

16 04 2007

I just finished reading a post from A Girl and a Boy. She talks about how in life we often think of each step as a step up, bigger apartment, more amenities, better paying job, etc. She offers instead the idea of life as a web on which we can move in all directions. She also talks about how each time we make changes in our life, we often sacrifice in order to gain.

This is actually something I’ve been thinking alot about since finding out that Mike’s going to be in Chicago next spring. I’m ecstatic about the fact that I’ll see him more. I’ve always disliked the fact that we have trouble knowing some of the more mundain elements of each other’s lives because when we are together it’s a bit like being in a bubble. We alter our normal routines, and spend alot of concentrated time together often just the two of us.

I’m also relieved that I know longer have to deal with the black hole of uncertainty that existed because we had no real concept of when we would be in the same place. A year, two years, three? Could I wait that long? Was he worth waiting for? I fought that battle recently, and came through with a resounding “yes, for now I chose this path”. I want to see this relationship to the end, whatever end that might be. But it was still really hard not to be scared. Especially because there are parts of my subconscious that are still afraid that I’m destined to be continually rejected by the men I fall for. Discarded for a better model because they didn’t truly love me, I just tricked them into thinking they did by loving them as hard as I could.

But now it’s a solid, tangible 10 months. Still a while, and there’s no guarantee that he’ll stay in Chicago after he graduates, but at least I have this three months to look forward to and hold onto when I get impatient with the long distance.

But what am I giving up? There are always sacrifices to be made even if we don’t see them till much later. The one that I’ve been thinking about is the dynamic I have with my roommates. I’ve already had to make sacrifices with my time with them because of my relationship with Mike, but that’s going to intensify when he’s living within visiting distance. I will have to be more conscious of how I use my time, and how my relationship with Mike is affecting my relationships with the girls, and apartment dynamics as a whole. If Mike and I work out, I’ll have years to spend with him, but I will only be living with these girls for two years, and most likely we’ll all move in different directions and spread out across the country and quite possibly the world in the coming years. Being in community with them is a luxury I try very hard not to take for granted. Hopefully there will be no regrets.

Word gets around

29 03 2007

My relationship with my family is quite complicated. I don’t actually know most of my family very well, but we’re not what you would call a “dysfunctional” family. I just haven’t lived with them for alot of my formative years. I am the baby of the family. My siblings are 13, 11, and 9 years older than I. I have fond memories of all of them from my childhood, but I never learned to really know them as people. I had my first dorming experience at 10, and although it only lasted for a few months, I think I really started to disconnect from my parents then. I went to boarding school for high school, and became pretty distant from both of them. I had always been a pretty independent child anyway, and I don’t remember having a strong connection with either of them after coming back from Africa. I remember feeling as a middle and high schooler that my mom was tired of raising children and that I was her last chance to “do it right’ and that I was failing her.

So now that I’m an adult, I deal with this dicatomy of feeling distant and disconnected from my family while also having alot of history with them that makes it feel like I should know them better.  I’ve been learning more about my parents and sisters in the past few years, but slowly and at times akwardly.  I realize alot of this is my fault, because they are right there.  I could talk to them basically whenever I wanted, but I don’t take the time.  I envy my roommates who seem comfortable and close to their families.  I love my family very much, and think they are all amazing people.  And I know they love me.  I hope that I can find ways to bridge this gap in years to come.

Last weekend I found out that we are not as disconnected as I sometimes think.  I was in Goshen that weekend, and Mike and I were dealing with some strong questions about the wisdom of continuing our relationship despite the fact that he is going to be gone alot of the next year, we have no clear idea of when we can actually be in the same place, and he’s feeling insecure about what he wants for his future and how I fit into that.  He’s afraid of hurting me and that the separation is going to be too hard on me and he’ll feel guilty about that.  A trial separation was discussed, a more permanent breakup seemed imminent at on point, but at the end of the weekend we chose to stay together and continue as planned.  But on Saturday we thought we were going to take a break over the summer, and possibly next fall, and when I stopped by my sister’s house I told her about it.  I didn’t think she would say anything to any of the other family (I’m not exactly sure why I was under this impression), so imagine my surprise when I received a call on Monday from my mom saying “I heard from your brother that you and your boyfriend split up!”  So new actually travels faster in my family than I realized.  Except I’m always the last to hear.  I remember one time my nephew broke his arm and I found out a month later.  They were still living in PA at the time.

On a random note, in a recent conversation with Abby about the weekend’s drama, she called me a “serial monogamist”.  How’s that for creating new vocabulary.

One in four

27 03 2007

The statistics on sanity are that one out of every four Americans is suffering from some form of mental illness. Think of your three best friends. If they’re okay, then it’s you.
Rita Mae Brown

I think my roommates and I rotate. We pass on the insanity.