Show Up

Sometimes, life is unfair and downright fucked up. This is something most of us learned as children.

For me, I was in elementary school and had to pull my card for allegedly talking. I actually wasn’t talking, but my teacher did not want to hear me out and I had to pull my card anyway.

The smug little girl who WAS talking and knew full well the injustice that was happening right before her devious eyes just sat there.

While I knew she clearly wasn’t getting into Heaven, I was still upset. In fact, I was so upset that I began to cry and my teacher made me pull my card AGAIN for crying. The satisfaction of knowing that now both of them would be rotting in Hell still wasn’t enough to console me.

This memory stuck with me. Sometimes unfair things happen. Even worse still, we usually can’t do anything about it. It’s a part of life. I get it….but still, fuck that.

I am happy to tell you that the evil little girl who didn’t own up to talking in class grew up to be a woman whose husband left her for another woman. Sad, really. She could have avoided all of that pain had she just admitted she was the one talking and pulled her card. Let that be a lesson to you all.

I know, that’s a silly story and a minor injustice, but what do we do when the really unfair things happen, and we can’t do anything about it? What do we do when we can’t console ourselves or the ones we love? What happens to our hearts and minds when the unfairness is too much to bear?

I don’t have any answers for you. Many of us have faith in a greater power and that brings some peace and comfort, but not always right away and very often we are still left not understanding why certain things happen.

Here’s what I do know…

When times get tough and things are unfair, it helps to have amazing people around you. By amazing, I mean strong people who have empathy and give love. If you don’t already have these people in your life, get some.

I’ll share some of the best parts of the people who keep me sane (sort of) and give me a shoulder to cry on or an ear to listen when I need it.

They dance. They dance like fools and like everybody is watching, but they don’t give a shit.

They laugh. Not only do they laugh at my jokes to the point of snorting (you know who you are), they also make me laugh and know how important laughter is. This includes enjoying stupid/lame jokes that only we think are funny.

They sympathize. Even if they don’t know exactly what you’re going through, they listen with compassion and try to understand.

They empathize. Even better, they know exactly what you’re going through, and you don’t feel alone.

They drink. Let’s face it, I’m gonna need you to have a cocktail or three with me because days are hard.

They sit by your side. They’ve seen your ugly cry face. They’ve seen you overreact. They’ve seen you without makeup. And still, they sit next to you.

They don’t judge. There is no “right way” to do this thing called life and they know this. They’ve made the same mistake 12 times, just to be sure it was really a mistake. We’re all still figuring some things out and that’s ok.

They dislike all the same people you do. We don’t wear pink on Wednesdays, but you still can’t sit with us. Like, ever.

They think you’re beautiful, inside and out. They not only think it, they tell you. We build each other up. The world will tear us down, but we won’t do that to each other.

They believe the best of you. Others will assume the worst of you, but your people should always see the good in you and tell you so.

Most importantly…

They show up. At a moment’s notice and sometimes without you even asking because they just know.

To my people who are all of these things and more, I love you and thank you. We have a safe place to go when we need to unwind or vent or cry or laugh and that place is with each other. We can’t always fix each other’s hurt or make the terrible things better, but we can show up and be with each other.

There is something devastatingly beautiful about the pain that makes us vulnerable in life. We become so open and exposed that others have a chance to pour love and healing into our hearts and our wounds.

Even when my heart is heavy, it is full. And that is a gift.

Definitely, maybe

I thought I was clear, but apparently not. Please don’t talk to me for the first few hours of the day. I’m coming to grips with the fact that I have to be awake and it’s difficult.

Also, please don’t wear your Snuggie to work. Oh, it’s a poncho? Umm, no. At the very least, that is a cape and who are you saving? Nobody. Fucking nobody.

I’m trying to be a nice person, but you people are making this hard. I’m staying centered. I’m burning my Sage. I’m hugging the humans I like. I’ve even eaten Kale twice in the last week. Help a sister out and save your words for someone else. Hold that thought, like, forever. Thanks.

I’m about to become one of those people who creates a Facebook event. I know, but it’s for a good cause. It’s so my girlfriends and I can go eat delicious food and drink adult beverages a month from now because we’re all so damn busy and this is what it’s come to.

I guess being an adult means you have to schedule lunches a month in advance and eat a lot of green leafy vegetables. Nobody tells you that when they’re reading you fairy tales as a child, do they?!

“And then the princess picked her boyfriend’s boxers up off the floor every day for the rest of her life because while his eyesight was good, the hamper was invisible to him.”

Cohabitation is fun. This month alone, I’ve watched 13 movies I couldn’t be less interested in. I get to tell him that he’s using his inhaler wrong and wonder if he’s leaving his trimmed beard hair in the sink because, like the hamper, it’s invisible to him. Write a story about that, Disney.

As though that isn’t hard enough, I go to work and PEOPLE TALK TO ME.

I’m not actually upset about any of this. They are minor annoyances, but I might have an attitude problem. Definitely, maybe.

Confession time: There are six stalls in the bathroom in our building. The fourth one doesn’t lock. There is no way to make it properly lock, it just won’t. I see women walk right in and I say nothing. They usually like to give it 3 or 4 tries before realizing there is no way to lock it. I could have told them, but I find it amusing. I might be an asshole. Definitely, maybe.

Here, watch this little hedgehog try to swim. Act like you don’t love the hell out of it. I dare you.

How To Be 37

I just had a birthday. I know, fantastic. I bought myself all the face creams so let’s just not talk about it anymore.

I’ve been catching up on the last few seasons of Grey’s Anatomy as of late. So far I’ve diagnosed two people with Cardiomyopathy, one with Bronchitis and 62 with an attitude problem. A few didn’t take the news well, but whatevs.

We recently attended a Halloween party. I went as an attacked Little Red Riding Hood with a basket full of booze. Duh. I contemplated doing the couple thing, my boyfriend obviously being the Wolf. However, the look of excitement on his face when we found the inflatable Velociraptor costume was just too much to bear. Plus, I was really hoping he’d get a little tipsy and fall over. Then, I could just roll him out the door and back home. Bonus, he’d be encapsulated in this getup all night so when he farted and gassed himself out to the point of unconsciousness, I would see Karma at it’s finest. I’m an amazing person.

Fine, I’m not that great. Still better than some though. For instance..

I saw two women jogging early in the morning and one was wearing a head flashlight. I can’t decide if they were friends jogging together or if the flashlight wearer was chasing the other woman to force her into friendship. She clearly needs a friend to tell her that she looks like a dumb ass. First of all, it wasn’t that dark. Second of all, you’re not a coal miner, ma’am. Take it down a notch.

Or how about the guy who likes to hold the door open and wait for me to walk through at the gym even though I might be a solid 50 feet away. Thank you sir, but I’m going to get my cardio inside the gym and now I feel like I have to awkwardly powerwalk because you have an impatient look on your face like I’m inconveniencing you. Dude, I’ll get my own door.

Enough about others, let’s get back to me. I’m about to cry over this hangnail and I just washed a plastic fork. Send help.
And out of the blue, I decided to watch Eat, Pray, Love. It felt like the 37-year-old thing to do. Clearly, we needed wine and by “we” I just mean me. I watched the movie twice. In a row. I blame the wine.
I’d actually seen it years ago, but I don’t think I got it at the time. Either way, I suddenly have a desire to eat all the pasta in Italy, buy bigger jeans, then attend a wedding in India and finally cry with Javier Bardem about EVERYTHING.

However, there was a quote in there that I loved so very much..

“Ruin is a gift. Ruin is a road to transformation.”

I think there are some types of growth that can only come from brokenness. Sometimes we have to be humbled to be open to what we need to learn.

A little bit of the wisdom I picked up over the last year:

Half the time you’re fighting with someone, you’re really fighting with yourself.

Forgiveness is not a chore, but a necessary part of loving someone completely. This means yourself also.

Life’s trials don’t end. One gets solved and another arises. Learning to enjoy life throughout all of the trials is the point.

Don’t miss the point.

There is always room for one more.

Check in on people, they need it more than you think.

You don’t have it all figured out, life will surprise you and about half the time you’ll like it.

I will say “Bless You” up to 3 times when you sneeze. After that, I assume you’re an attention whore and you’re dead to me.

What? I can’t be mature all the time.

Ever feel like you’re not cutting it as a parent? Let me help you out. My son just went to Camp and I sent him with a disposable camera. I’ll be dropping it off to get the pictures developed along with my daughter’s disposable camera from when she went to Camp SIX YEARS AGO. Mother of the year.

I’m going to need you guys to lower your expectations. Thanks.