It’s Okay.

It’s okay to be sad.

It’s okay to let your guard down once in a while and to just wallow in your emotions.

It’s okay to express how you feel.

It’s all okay.

Because you’re human.

Hi, I’m not sure if you’ve read my resolution post for 2018 yet aptly named The Year(s) of Growth, but if you haven’t, then these were my top ten resolutions:

  1.  Stop comparing
  2.  Break my bad habits
  3.  Leave the house more
  4.  Eat healthier
  5.  Listen to more music
  6.  Read more
  7.  Produce more art, whether it’s paint on a canvas or a new blog post — writing is an art too
  8.  Make it on to the deans’ list
  9.  Stop letting people take advantage
  10.  Ignore the insults

It’s a long and hopeful list, right? I’ll dig into them in December, so for now, we’re only going to focus on number two; “break my bad habits.” I didn’t discuss this in that blog, and I’m not sure I’ve talked about it yet (maybe I should “clean house” and check all of my blogs), but my all-time worst habit is not letting people in. For some reason, there has just been a mental blockade around that portion of my brain, and I’ve just discovered how to cope with it.

Today, I had what I like to call a Twitter Episode, which is where I air my “dirty laundry” out publicly, with hopes that my tweets get lost in the abyss of memes and self-deprecating humor. Yet, today they didn’t. I was seen, heard, asked about, and apologized to. No one knew exactly how to fix my problem, but I was still seen. A few people reached out and they helped me realize that it’s not going to be the end of the world–at least, not yet anyway.

But see, that’s the thing. As I write this blog about opening up, I’m still extraordinarily closed off. I’ve closed myself off from those that care about me, and today I realized just how self destructive that can be. Not only for myself, but to everyone else around me.

It isn’t fun seeing those you care about be sad or upset, but you have to remember that if they’re hurting, don’t ignore their cries for help. Don’t let them do it alone because if you truly care about them, you’ll help them in any way you can.

Honestly, the hardest thing to do, is to ignore those posts that tell you how toxic you are when you are upset, because those are complete bullshit. It’s not okay to build a fortress around how you feel. If something’s bothering you, don’t just let it pass; TALK about it. TEXT about it. WRITE about it. Do anything you can to get those thoughts out of your head and into the world. It doesn’t matter if it’s going to be written in a note on your phone, in a Word.doc that you never open again, or even if it’s in a diary that’s closed off to the world… as long as it’s written down, it’ll help.

Also, I realize how this must sound coming from me of all people. Like I said before, (or did I?), I’m an expert at bottling things up. I have almost twenty-two years of it under my belt, so you might be wondering; “Who are you to give me advice on letting people in?” Well, my dear reader, I can only write how I personally feel, and you can take from it as you please. It’s entirely up to you and you alone. However, with as much experience as I have, I can say for sure that one thing helps when it comes to opening up, and it only takes a few steps:

  1. Get. Out. Of. Your. Bed.
  2. Move.
  3. Don’t slow down.
  4. Find a friend(s).

After you’ve established some sort of trust with said friend(s); open up. Let people in. Don’t let your anxiety, inability to trust because of your past, or your overthinking affect the fact that there is someone out there that will listen. They may be hard to find, but they are out there. Somewhere. You just have to go out and look. You honestly just have to trust me.

Once you find your person, or what us Grey’s Anatomy fans like to call “your Cristina,” never let them go. Your Cristina might not always be the same person as your Derek, but if they are then that’s great! It’s much harder to find two people who care about you as much as Cristina and Derek did for Meredith, but if you’re as lucky as I am; you’ll find them both.

I quit.

When I was little,
I used to play piano.
I started when I was 5-years-old, living in Germany and I stuck with it until junior high.
Well. Needless to say, I quit.
I quit pressing the black and white keys.
I quit singing to my favorite songs.
I just. Quit.
But, do you know why?
Because my piano teacher yelled at me.
She didn’t yell because I was arguing.
She yelled because I refused to practice.
All throughout my young life, I refused to practice.
I took guitar lessons.
I quit.
I managed to hold onto the flute for almost eight years, and the piccolo for five. But, I still quit.
I even practiced those two.. after I hit a certain point in high school where I realized;
“Oh.. I have solos. People can hear me.”
So, I practiced (almost) every night.

I’m not blaming anyone for my bad habit of quitting. Anyone but myself anyway.

However.

Today, I played my beautiful sparkly pink Daisy Rock guitar and I was still where I was when I first started.
Plucking to “Ode to Joy”,
strumming the five or six chords I still know by heart.
Playing around with “Seven Nation Army”, “Smoke on the Water”, and “Welcome Home.”

Well.. picking back up the guitar started a few months ago when I tried to learn “Without You” by Oh Wonder on my acoustic.
When I realized that my coordination was gone. I could no longer sing and play but I could still just get the chords. Plus now that my fingers are a little stronger/bigger than the very first time I picked up my beginner guitar, I could get to the chords a little faster. However, that’s not the point.

To play “Skinny Love” by Birdy, or “Without You” by Oh Wonder, or “All About Us” by He is We.. you have to be able to strum and sing. I asked a few of my fellow guitarists, which was primarily researching Yahoo Answers replies, and everyone said that this will take anywhere between a few months to a few years.

Well, I don’t have months or years because I don’t have patience. So I can feel myself on the verge of quitting. Mainly because I hate not being able to perfect something the first time I try it. Plus, I hate practicing. So much.
How is it, that I can play the guitar and sing on Rock Band, but I can’t strum and sing on the real guitar?

Tomorrow, I might (re)try the piano. But we will see.

Favorite(s) Nack

Crunching in

every bite.

The chewing masks,

the noise emitting

from the screen.

But,

I don’t care.


The oil coating my fingers,

makes this even better.

It adds more flavor,

to every handful.


Savoring each

and every bite.

As the plot progresses,

the outside of my jeans,

become textured.

From the wiping of the grainy,

specks of this sent-from-god snack.


I go to lick my fingers,

and the taste of butter fills my taste buds.


I need,

to ask for a refill.


Could you guess what delicious
morsel I’m describing?

If you didn’t see,

the original picture?


 popcorn

Watching, Always Watching

Blue and green eyes are always watching. I see them peeking through the eyelashes of a tired soul.

Is it school making her this sleepy? What’s troubling her?

She’s always looking at me with blank stares as she tap-tap-taps the keys attached to the second half of my body. Well, there she goes again. Looking away at the other little screen in her hand, her iPhone.

CONCENTRATE! You have work to do, quit getting distracted. Just keep staring at my lit-up screen so you can finish this assignment and you can be one step closer to graduating from the school you’re always calling on the little screen in your hand.

Come on woman, don’t stand up. Where are you going? Ah, she’s back with food, when instead she needs to be feeding into my screen with the words that I know are rolling around in her brain.

IPhone, why don’t you stop her? She needs to focus on her schoolwork instead of the games you contain. Finally, she’s typing again. That’s right, put both hands on the keyboard, don’t pull away or you’ll get distracted by the things around you.

Wait, is that a cat I see? There she goes again. Distracted. Petting the feline who proceeds to paw at her chest while she attempts to do schoolwork. Shoo, kitty!

Alright, the needy little feline is gone. She has a few more words to go and they are slowing spilling onto the seemingly blank canvas in front of her…

295..

296..
297..

she’s finally done

 

– H.P. Monitor 

Theodore “Toefur” Meowsevelt: A Memoir From a Cat’s Perspective

It was a very long night when my momma, Lylah decided to give birth to 5 beautiful baby kittens. On April 24th, the girl human got home from work at almost 11 0’clock at night and my momma was settled into her little box in the back of the closet. Meowing. Groaning. Whining. By the time 1 o’clock arrived I was born alongside my brothers and sister. We were nameless at the time until the humans decided what our names would be but eventually I learned that my name would be Theodore Meowsevelt. I have long hair and apparently, I’m the worst behaved one.

When we were born we couldn’t really hear or see much but we still knew where our momma was. She was always with us. From the time we were born from the moment we started walking. Lylah was no ordinary mom. She loved us unconditionally and made sure we were groomed well and fed. Every time we tried to roll away from her she would pick us up by our scruffs and pull us down for a bath.

“No, mom! Stooppp! I wanna play with my siblings!”, I’d scream and protest while she continuously pulled me back from the spot I rolled to.

“Theodore Meowsevelt, get your tiny furry butt back here!”, she’d faintly scold at me while I proceeded to protest.

No matter how much I tried to roll, momma always got me. She wouldn’t let us go further than 6 inches away from her. How ridiculous is that? I mean, we were only a couple weeks old at the time, but I still wanted my freedom.

We later learned that our mother wasn’t just a mother. She was a smother. From the time we were born until we were a couple months old. Our momma was the cat version of Beverly Goldberg.

Sooner or later, our eyes and ears started to open more. I could see blurry little blobs I could only assume were my siblings and we could hear our mom a little bit more clearly. The latter part was not very fun to say the least, considering I was always in trouble. Momma seemed to only yell at me rather than the other four.

When our eyesight was no longer blurry I could finally make out what my siblings looked like. Alistair was the oldest by a couple of seconds. He had, what looked like white eyeliner around his eyes and he had long hair like me! Winston was a little gray tabby cat who looked just like our daddy, an outdoor alley cat named Oliver. Winston was so friendly and he had a twin sister named Daisy, who was the only girl of the group. Patrick, well Patrick kind of looked like a squishy ball of fur. He had short hair and we believe he was the baby because he’s clueless most of the time.

It wasn’t long after our eyes and ears opened until we started to learn how to walk. Walking.. Well. Walking was weird. One little paw in front of the other. My siblings and I took on a new task together. All of us stumbled, some of us made it a few inches, while others (mainly Patrick) decided to stay next to mom.

“Come on Patrick, let’s go explore the world!” we would try and protest with him.

“Guys, I’m so comfortable. I don’t wanna leave mom.”, he’d say while proceeding to get groomed, yet again, by momma.

Patrick would not budge. He was just a squishy ball of laziness. So, we just left him to his naps and over-bathing tendencies.

A couple weeks went by before we learned how to jump. We were on the girl humans bed when we were only a couple months old! It was so high up there. Sometimes we would just sleep up there and take up the girl humans leg room. It was fun and sooo much more comfortable than the floor my momma had us sleep on.

At 6 months old, my siblings started to disappear! It was the craziest thing.

Coulrophobia

On the night of October 2, 2016, I had a horrific nightmare. As many of you probably know, there have been creepy clown sightings all over the states. They’ve been caught luring kids into the woods, there were assaults at college campuses (one occurred where my best friend attends, be safe Nicole), there have been sightings of them walking on public streets/dirt roads, and there have been many threats pointed towards school districts and Halloween. It’s 2016 and we’re worried about clowns. Rumor has it that they tend to appear every now and then at this time of the year, where they attempt to pull these same “pranks” we’ve read about today. Many think it’s a joke, however when somebody is chased down, assaulted, harassed or threatened, I don’t think it’s very funny. I’m not writing this blog to spread awareness, I’m writing it to elaborate more on why I only got 7 hours of sleep between October 2 and October 4.

The first night consisted of a vivid and graphic nightmare involving my best friends, Nicole and Marina. We were about to go on our usual Pokemon/mall trip when there were sirens and clowns appearing everywhere. Marina was driving, I was in the passenger seat and Nicole was in the back. Everywhere we turned there was a clown, we stayed in the car until the very last moment we had to get out to get into the mall. When we arrived we were escorted in by a group of police like we were being protected from paparazzi. Tonight was in a “Purge” setting. There were attacks, thefts, chases, and stalking. Police were still out protecting heavily populated areas because it wasn’t a government issued purge, it was an overthrow of the cities, by the clowns. Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton were on the television, clowns ran the streets, cops were in full force and people were scared. There were “Clown Lives Matters” posters and propaganda all over the commercials and walls of highly populated areas. Everyone had their doors locked. It was complete chaos.

creepy-clown-3

When Nicole, Marina and I were in the mall most of the people didn’t come to work. The majority of the stores were closed and we could only get into Hot Topic, Spencers and other stores like them. They didn’t care about the clown catastrophe outside, because they’re stores thrived off of it. They already had clown masks in their displays because Halloween was coming up and they were prepared for it in full force. The stores had many skimpy outfits, scary masks, makeup, and whatever else you needed for the upcoming holiday. No one could touch them because these were just the kind of stores they were, they already had these things before the clowns appeared and they already were set for any disturbance involving their inventory. After we got what we came for, we were escorted back to the car.

Afterwards, we continued our Pokemonning around Copperas Cove until late at night. It was around 2 in the morning when we decided it was time to go home. We were the closest to my house, so we went to 29th street. Where we thought the streets were bare, until we arrived outside of my house. Three clowns appeared behind the car and we weren’t sure how to get out because the police were lacking in this part of town. So naturally, we all were shaken. Marina put the car in drive and we sped off. The clowns proceeded to chase us all the way down the road and I woke up.

creepy-clown-2

The second night I went to bed at 11pm and I woke up at 2 in the morning because of yet another nightmare. This one, also included clowns. Except this time, I was with Cody and my little 5 year old sister, Willow.

Cody and I were sitting and drinking coffee on a porch in the front yard (I’m not sure whose porch it was) and Willow was playing in the culdesac where the house was located. We weren’t at the house we currently live in though, so I’m assuming it was just my imagination coming up with a location. The sun just went down, my parents were out of town and we were doing what we always do when Willow had a good day at school. The porch we were on was about a foot tall and you could see the culdesac very clearly because they installed more than one street lamp after the clown appearances started happening more at nighttime.

While Cody and I were drinking coffee, we were discussing this whole clown situation and about how there was a group of them sighted very closely to our location a couple of days ago. I, for one was terrified of the whole situation and Cody kept continuing on about how if he ever came across one that he’d kill it.

Then I just so happened to see movement in my peripherals. Which caused concern.

I look down, and there in the shadows was one of the creepy clowns curled up staring up at us. I let out a scream and couldn’t move, Cody stood up in his chair, cocked the gun he had in his belt and the clown disappeared.

Willow was still playing in the culdesac, until she let out a scream too. By the time we looked up she was running towards us with two clowns behind her. Cody started running towards them but by the time anything happened. I woke up.

I woke up at 2 in the morning to my brain imagining the clown curled up next to my bed and a creepy face in my room that looked a lot like this one:

creepy-clown-face

I woke up and couldn’t move. Not to go to the bathroom. Not to feed the animals. I couldn’t move. The last time I saw creepy faces in my room I was just a kid. I went to therapy for it along with my ADD. It was a while ago. Since the night of October 3rd, I’ve been able to get a full night of sleep because I started doing this technique I used to do when I was younger. I would basically make a barricade with my stuffed animals whenever I thought I’d have a nightmare and it worked for the most part. Well, resorting back to old ways isn’t necessarily a bad thing. So I tried it and the only dreams I’ve had have been about marching band, art, Legos, and other miscellaneous things.

I didn’t write this article as a cry for attention, I just wanted everyone to know why I haven’t gotten much sleep since this clown situation has started occurring. It’s not a joke to people with overactive imaginations and tremendous anxiety issues. I’ve been terrified of clowns my whole life so now that it’s all over social media and the news, it doesn’t make it any better. Judy Blume once said, “Each of us must confront our own fears, must come face to face with them. How we handle our fears will determine where we go with the rest of our lives. To experience adventure or to be limited by the fear of it.” Now that doesn’t mean I’m going to go out and find a clown to beat down, or even watch “It”, but a way of overcoming nightmares/fears is to talk about them. The fact I was capable of even searching on Google for the images in this blog post, shows a little about the fact I’m becoming a little less afraid. Does this mean I’ll be over the whole fear of clowns by the end of the week? Probably not. Will I still get a little anxious at the sight of them? I might. However, I still took the first step in overcoming and just because it’s a little blog post doesn’t mean that I need to justify my ways of slowly, but surely overcoming Coulrophobia.