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Commitment.

Hannah…she just gets it. I’ve been struggling with getting back into the groove of things. I love, love, love to keep myself busy. I push myself hard, which sometimes causes for lack of commitment. There are a few things in my life so badly right now. It seems like I’ll never reach the end of the tunnel towards success. But right now, I am working hard to tell myself that someday all of this time will seem like just a blink of the eye. 

 

I love Hannah Brencher’s words so much. Here is a part of the blog post she recently wrote that pertains so much to me and my lost soul sometimes. 

 

“But commitment is the farthest thing from beautiful when you feel stuck in the mud, and the wheels ain’t turning, and you’ve got no choice but to keep going, and keep going, and keep going until you can make something move.

I guess I’m now starting to understand why commitment seems a little jacked up and flimsy in the world today. Because real commitment– hands all in with no hope of turning outward– is not always the picture-perfect, edited thing you’d thought it would be. A lot of times it’s tears. And it’s telling yourself you will get through something, even when you aren’t so sure that you will. And it’s lacing up your boots to get through these battlefields that seek to own you with doubt and insecurity and hopelessness.

And through all of this I’m learning that distractions are real. And distractions sounds like too helpless of a word that, at the root of it, means “an escape from what you are called to do”. The Facebook streams. The Twitter conversations. The filtered little things we peer through the lens of Instagram to find. The magazines. The Netflix. All of it could start as a simple distraction to you but grow bigger and bigger until you are stealthy in escaping through those channels everyday.

There’s thinking you will do something and then actually doing it. The two are completely, completely different and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. And when you start doing it– be it putting your whole heart into a relationship or all of your lungs into this lifetime– you will want to turn back. You will want to run, run, run away to a time when it was easier and it was comfortable and nothing made you fearful or made you feel like something was crawling beneath your skin.

Stay.

Please stay. Stay until the words come. Stay until you know what you feel. Stay until after you figure out what it is that you feel and you decide that that feeling scares you half to death. Stay when it’s hard. Stay when something inside of you thinks it might just be getting to the good part.

Don’t just stay when it’s blissful. Blissful ain’t never built a life in the way the bricks of struggle & challenge & strife build out a character inside of you.

You might want to leave but maybe that is all the more reason to stay.

Even when the world doesn’t get it and they shut out the lights and they all go home. Are you following them? Are you following them home?

Stay. And be committed.

Only then, only then, will the breakthrough come.”

 

Answers

With tired eyes but a restless mind, I sit here and type a short blog post from my bed. I have my alarm set for 5:30am to finish some readings and a response assignment that I don’t have the energy to commit to until tomorrow. 

So, why not keep myself up entirely too late by talking to the empty space I call home…and also my blog. 🙂

It’s funny how short weeks pass us by, and days turn into nights, and then before we know it our reality has changed a little from the last time we discussed things with others, wrote blog posts about circumstances, etc. which in all reality seem like just the other day? 

If you followed that and were able to bridge the gap between my phrasing and what you think I intended to communicate, then I hope you are just as perplexed as I am regarding how quickly things change. 

Just the other day, I was sleeping in and going to yoga back in my hometown desperately trying to find things to fill my time like knitting or reading novels. Now, I’m back to school and starting the last semester of my junior year of college. I’m back to making bargains with myself on when I’m going to sleep and regretting the extra time I spare to blog, eat, get ready, etc. 

My nails are nibbled down to the bone practically from nervous energy and a terrible, terrible habit and I’m trying to let the nervous energy all subside. I’m tired of fearing the unknown, the future, my path, etc. Tonight, I had a bit of a drama momma moment alone in my car while I patiently waited for my car’s engine to warm up. I was frustrated, feeling off, confused….ever have those days? I guess I do here and there, but never to the breaking point like I did today. I’m a lot of things, but I’m not normally unsure. 

When you grow a pear, you can call me back.

 

 

Signed, sealed, and delivered. XX

In the wise words of HB, “This is a story about swimming”…

After a few days of relaxation and rejuvenation, I think it’s time to write. I’m ready to spill words onto the page and really embrace my story in hopes of better paving the road for the future. Tonight during a restorative yoga session, I listened to my instructor speak encouraging words about protecting our heart and living in the present. I need to better be present in my daily life. This is the first attempt.

I’m going to begin by acknowledging that there is a person out there in this world that I need to say a few words to still. I am going to say these here and then continue to write my story. If this person reads them, then great…my work is done and I have said all that I need to say. If this person does not read it, then I hope it gives you a better understanding of where I am coming from regarding a relationship I will speak about below and I am sure in following posts.

To Him, the person who knows who he is: You may not understand my reason for disappearing the way I did..you may be sitting there with anger inside of you directed at every ounce of my being… Although I am sad that you have reverted to less than understanding emotions and chosen the easier route of anger, I want to take the time to say that this is ok and that I get why you might be feeling this way.

Instead of trying to explain myself or my actions, I am going to simply acknowledge what happened between the person who knows who he is and begin sharing my journey of bravely starting over in this 2014 year.

While many of you know, this is a progressive blog. I started this without any specific intentions. I’ve most enjoyed the space this blog has created for me to escape to when needed. I’ve been inspired here, which is why I continue. It’s been three years of refining, and I think I now am ready to be really be honest and open up about some largely coveted skeletons in my closet. So, please enjoy following along as I begin to put my best foot forward here in an effort of being the open book I desire to find in someone else in my future somedays.

I’d like to begin by sharing a meaningful quote that I stumbled upon in the morning of the first day of the new year. I was feeling woozy, drunk on the idea that starting over for me was going to quite possibly be one of the hardest things I’ve ever done in my almost twenty one years of life. I was feeling anxious, worrisome, and a bit shamefully guilty throughout the course of the morning hours prior to reading this quote. While it may be irrelevant information to whoever reads this (if anyone), I do still wish to communicate that the aforementioned emotions were typical for me to experience during my 2013 year on a daily basis and throughout the length of my emotional relationship with the man that shall remain unnamed.

Here lies the quote by Natasha Bedingfield, singer and songwriter that I’ve respected for many years:

“Bless you this shiny fresh year, Dear Ones. 
It is untouched, uncrushed 
not bruised or used. 
It’s a blanket of just fallen snow, not yet walked upon.
It’s that expanse of sand just as the early tide has gone out, before the footprints of runners and their dogs lay their hurried tracks. 
All traces of sandcastles or snowmen lost forever leaving room for today’s new ones. 
There’s a beauty in moving forward – knowing what to leave behind and what to take with you. 
Who ever we are and How ever we went about it, we have either jumped, run, stumbled, tiptoed or slid into a blank canvas. Here we are. The question now is what are we going to create on it? 
That, my Dears, is entirely up to you, for it is your blank page and its is your pen.”

Feel free to take time to read that a few times over again. It provided me with a sense of relief on that New Years morning when I couldn’t help but feel as if I was haunted by a feeling of loss. I certainly read it several times throughout my day. I felt so sad. Heartbroken to have to be closing “the book” once again.

For what it’s worth, I had not planned any of this. I had not planned to be in this position nor had I planned to know how to appropriately act. For what it’s worth, this is all probably my fault. If anything, I want those reading this to know that I can acknowledge the fact that I am indeed responsible for my actions and for my part in the relationship I played a role in for some time. If I had been the strong woman most people think I am, it wouldn’t have been such a difficult thing for me to see through. But then again, I am not that strong of an individual even on my so-called stronger days.

And for what it is worth, love is much stronger than I, or anyone for that matter, could ever realize. Love can control you. Or at least it can wrap you up in a mess of vines, complicating your every rational move and making you weak in the knees until you eventually give in to what your heart desires. Love is a vicious lil’ bugger too. It will control you, greedily embracing you like a lover’s arms wrapped around you with an unleashing grip. Love will make you eventually long for that clenching embrace too…the one that you initially fought. It will not unleash you even when you ask politely, even after you put up a damn good fight. Love unfortunately will not break its grasp on you, woven like a million thick vines covering an old abandoned home deep in the forest, until you unforgivingly go at it with an axe- chopping every vine viciously in a murderous furry. It will fight you victoriously until you completely succumb to your back sobbing on the cold ground, warm and salty tears streaming down your tired face, mixing with sweat from your furry. It is not until this moment that love will then release it’s unforgiving hold on you and slowly retract its vines like claws from all over your existence until it subsides- almost apologetically- while you continue to bawl your eyes out like a baby on the dirty floor…

You can disagree with me on this description of love. It certainly doesn’t align with the storybook tales we are told of princesses and princes falling in love in a sweet and tender way. Gentle love that gives you a soothing embrace. For me, love is strong and passionate. Love is bright red and burning. It is an on or off kind of concept. It is a fight. And I can’t wait until I meet the man in my life that makes love feel easy.

This is a story about love and swimming. Learning to love yourself and others by picking your beaten body off of that cold, wet ground, brushing ourselves off, and steadily picking one foot up and venturing forward.

I suppose I should formally introduce myself now then. For those of you that have followed me previously to this point, get over here and give me a hug. I appreciate you all so much for listening to me and growing with me over all of this time. To those new here and new to me, why hello there beautifuls. I’d like to shake your hand warmly with a nice smile. Again, this is a story about swimming. Learning how to push forward in murky waters while unforgiving waves crash hard in front of us. I’ll begin with my name. Feel free to make yourself comfortable and just sit and listen for awhile.

My name is Lindsey. I’m twenty years old. A Des Moines, IA native- growing up in the suburbs west of the city in a pleasant little town called Waukee. If you want to know more, feel free to google me. I think it’ll give you everything you need to know. Unless you want to hear more specific details from the direct source. If that’s the case, I invite to stay awhile…take your coat off, get comfy. 😉

I come from an average household; happy mother and father alongside younger twin sisters, and a sheltie dog named Sallie. We support one another and I am proud to have been raised by parents who’ve taught me the value of having strong morals. I’m a junior at the University of Iowa majoring in elementary education. While I am looking forward to teaching for a few years, I strive to really leave my mark on the field of education by eventually earning my Master’s in education and working in administration someday.

Most importantly, I have huge goals for the future. I want to be a mom. I want to raise a family. I want to travel and see the world. I want to experience new cultures and go to bed with the feeling that I have truly lived in this world. I want to love another human being with my entire heart. I want to own a record player. I want to take a road trip across the United States. The list goes on and on.

I want to do lots of things as you can see. I think what is being said here is that I am young and hugely ambitious. I work hard and desire lots from this world. I have not been in many relationships. I have not dated many people. I’ve been in one serious relationship in my adult life, which exploded painfully in my face several years ago. I have not been able to fully love myself since this moment, yet I still am passionately supportive of who I am and what I desire to be in my future. It has just taken me longer to get to the point that I really desire, something that has been a fight even before my romantic relationships came into play.

Why does any of this matter to you? Valid point you make, cutie pie. 😉 I guess what I am trying to say is that foraging into the 2014 year, I had a million things on my resolutions list. I didn’t take the time to write them all out. Instead, it’s a forever evolving list inside of my head. I add things constantly as I go through my days. I want those reading this to know that I make these types of lists every new year, always have and probably always will. Unfortunately, I do not always act on them. In fact, I often build impossible resolution lists setting myself up to fail miserably. This happens every year and I bitterly go about my year telling myself that “someday”, “one day”, I will wake up and everything will be fixed – magically.  I’ve made jokes in the past about how I continue to hold out for the day when I wake up and everything’s perfect. Ha. Am I the only one that thinks of Cinderella getting ready to the birds chirping and forest animals helping her get ready!? Cause I totally want that. I know it’s irrational but I have fabricated this false idea that in order to be happy, truly happy, everything has to be perfect. I have to wake up to perfection. I’m still waiting for that kind of a day. Like my own inner bully, I tell myself that everyone has got it all figured out and that I’m the one that walks around stumbling over everything I do. I blame it on poor luck, crappy circumstances, or the best one yet- “it’s just the way it is” mantra.

But maybe through trial and error, I have realized that this is not how it works in the real world, baby. I have learned that in order for anything to work, it takes an incredible amount of dedication and desire. You have to want it so badly that all you do is obsess over it, fight like those vines of love until you see results and then you forge ahead like it’s nothin’. That is the only way to really get what you desire. You have to be brave enough to leap into the unknown and then  fight the bloody fight until you win. I say this, because I’ve seen it. It wasn’t until now that I’ve fully taken the leap, but here I am free falling into the great unknown and I’m the most scared that I’ve ever been. But at least I’m here and trying, right?

All of that being said, I have got a few more things to discuss with you. How are you feeling? Would you like some coffee or tea? I want you to be comfortable as I spill this all out.

So here we go- now time for the big one…I think now that I’ve introduced myself a little, it may be appropriate for me to be really honest. Remember that open book policy I discussed earlier? Yeah…I’ve got a few pages that are sticking together like an old journal that’s experienced all elements with you… I need help separating a few pages that I think might be important for the overall story. But I can do this and I think the best way is for me to spit it all out… Cover your faces, ladies and gents ’cause here goes nothin…

So, I got myself into a messy relationship with a married man lasting for about 10 months in the year of 2013.

I feel like it is always essential to mention that he and I never met in person. Unless you count the two times that he and I passed one another in our cars. Both times were complete chances of fate, if you believe in that kind of thing. The first time, I panicked. The second time, I waved and then bawled as I drove myself back to work from my lunch break. We did not ever met up and exchange face-to-face conversation. Instead, we dove head first into a virtually-based emotional relationship that was extremely inappropriate and manipulative on both ends.

I don’t sit here and type these words out of spite, anger, shame, or bitterness. Rather, I feel it is the most humble, honest, and relative attempt of cutting he and I free from the whirlwind of events that played out over the duration of almost an entire year of our lives.

I loved him. I will probably always love him. But unfortunately, I never got him. Like chasing a energetic puppy around to make him sit and just lie with you…finally catching him after a long chase, lying down, feeling him relax beside you and then as soon as you relax your arm from around him, he bolts to chase the next leaf that blows by on a beautiful spring day at the park. That’s the best way that I can describe my attempts to have this man be present with me. I could never get him to stop and really listen. However, I am sure if he were to read this, he would argue otherwise.

How’d we meet you might be wondering? So, post-breakup Lindsey was attempting to put herself out there in different ways. People in my life had suggested trying to be a little more open to new ideas especially regarding dating ventures and meeting new people. For me to be given this type of advice was a bit of a slap in the face. I’m fun, right? I’m hip and cool. Disregard the fact that by me saying that makes me indeed quite un-hip and un-cool. Uhm Yolo, anyone?! Whatever. I’m stinkin’ cool, aight dawgs. Ok, I’m going to stop digging this hole deeper and continue. ;P

So, my roommate at the time had met her decently attractive and normal appearing boyfriend off of an online dating app called Skout. Things between he and her were going great and she suggested me trying it. One night while lying in bed, I decided to just download it before I went sleep and play around with it in the morning. I set up my profile the next morning, uploaded a few pictures of myself to my page, added a bio or whatever you call that space to fill with creative shit to ‘express yourself’.. lame space in my eyes, but yeah… I did all that the next morning while I sat on the cambus to campus. I was annoyed to be doing it and felt like I could have quite possibly been the single, measly college student putting themselves onto a dating app at the time. But, I did it to please those around me and in hopes that it would help me move on from my break-up.

Long story short, and a few irrelevant details removed in hopes of keeping your attention such as the awkward first conversation and my panicking the next morning and initial deleting of the app only to reinstall it a few days later to see if my profile and information was still out there floating around, it was through an app that I engaged with the man I now am telling you about.

He seemed sad and lonely once I got to know him. He worked hard to hold my attention. At first to be honest, I was annoyed. I needed him to back off. I was no good at being chased. It freaked me out at the time for I wasn’t used to it. I did the chasing in my previous relationship, so shit boi…. this whole being sought after felt good.

Then I found out he was married.

That was tough news. Everything got so complicated from there. Instead of getting to know me, he seemed to want my help in fixing a broken marriage. ‘Broken’ seems harsh, maybe just one that was going through troubles. I tried to help by initially offering some advice in hopes of giving the guy a womanly perspective and then moving on, this obviously wasn’t going anywhere anymore. Then he wouldn’t quit telling me things about how their relationship had never really been that good; the proposal and wedding day itself had been in his eyes “catastrophic failures”.

After listening for some time and having conversation merge from the Skout app to a messaging app called Kik, an alternative to handing out your phone number directly, I felt tired of listening to him discuss his troubles so I told him straight up. I remember him being a bit offended and then him telling me that he would refrain from discussing his issues. I didn’t understand why this dude wouldn’t just drop things. I tried to disappear  and would avoid responding to his steady messages.

Another important point I should mention is that he lived in a town outside of the place I was living. He and I were separated by a good 20 mi. or so. This made it seem safe to me. He and I would never cross paths I thought. I tried to justify the conversation that I felt was morally wrong by saying it was fine for me to have a few discussions in order to help the guy out because it’s not like he or I would ever met. I told myself that I wouldn’t allow any sort of emotional feelings to grow because it simply was not possible.

I’d like to pause here and tell you one other important note about myself and my family. Here I think it is beneficial for me to mention that my parents just celebrated their twenty-fifth wedding anniversary in November. In fact, their marriage is one of the longest within my family. Divorce and separation is thankfully not something that I have experienced directly, but I have grown up in a family that has largely been affected by it on both sides. In fact, both of my grandparents were divorced. Therefore, I was blessed with three grandmothers- an additional step-grandmother. Alternatively, I was never able to meet my biological paternal grandfather before he passed away three years ago. My dad never met him either and it wasn’t until very late in his life that he spoke to him for the first time since he was a toddler of two years old. Seeing both of my parents struggle with the heartache that comes with having broken homes has been a real experience of my entire life. I have watched both parents cry bitter, heartbroken tears over the experiences that come with the childhood memories lost to the reminders of how their young lives were once ripped apart and reshaped due to circumstances outside of their control. I thank God each day for bringing together my mother and father whose marriage has stood the test of time, growing stronger each and every day. I love them for taking their experiences and applying them to building a marriage that shows understanding, compassion, and acceptance through its basic bond.

I will stop here for now. This is a story about swimming. I will post the next installment soon. Just keep treading water here with me for a few.

 

Bless you all.

 

Lindsey

 

Oh, it's the simple things.

A Facebook status of my own. Makes me so proud to get my family on track with being healthy in the new year.

23 Things To Do Instead Of Getting Engaged Before You’re 23

Damn, I needed this.

Wander Onwards

Marriage

As 2013 wraps up, I’ve been noticing more and more people getting engaged and/or married under the age of 23.

I get it.

It’s cold outside… you want to cuddle and talk about your feelings… life after graduation is a tough transition… so why not just cut to the chase and get married, right?  It’s hip. It’s cool. You get to wear clothing that wouldn’t normally be socially acceptable at the dive bar you frequent with the $5 beers.  Eff it. YOLO. YOMO! You only marry once…

Oh wait.

The divorce rate for young couples is more than twice the national average. Divorce is no longer a staple in a midlife crisis, but rather, something that SEVENTEEN Magazine should probably be printing on. Headlines could read,

“How to budget for your prom AND your wedding in the same year!”

“What’s HOT: Kids raising Kids.”

“Why your Mom doesn’t really…

View original post 831 more words

“To see things thousands of miles away, things hidden behind walls and within rooms, things dangerous to come to, to draw closer, to see and be amazed.”

Life is many things. Often difficult to understand, but essential to be lived fully in order to be experienced. While there is life, there’s hope. 

Let’s talk…

You and I. Let’s sit right down and have a little discussion, face-to-face, up close and personal. I want to look across at you, stare into your being and have you fess up to everything… right here. right now.

Ever feel like having those conversations with yourself? I do. The kind where I’m ready and willing to lift myself by the shoulders with a tight grip and slam my ass down at the interrrogation table. I need to drill myself for a bit and force the conversation until everything has been said that needs to be put into words.  I need to ask myself about where it is that I really want to go, how I want to get there, and what I’m willing to sacrifice in order to get there.

There are only six days left of 2013. As the new year approaches, I can’t help but look to the future in hope of better and brighter things ahead. 2013 was a tough year for me full of lots of growth within myself personally and academically. There are lot’s of things that I am thankful for and also many moments of lessons learned. I have been blessed with a life that isn’t intended to be a cake walk and for good reason. As I go through the tough times, I contiually walk away with a lesson that I carry with me to apply in all that I do moving forward.

 

I think today as I sit and type this little post out, I speak to myself in saying: “It’s time that we had the talk, Lindsey.” “It’s time for you to look within yourself to be that person; daughter, sister, friend, grandaughter, roommate, future educator, student, etc., that you’ve alway dreamt of being.”

As hard as it is to admit, I think I got a little sidetrack in making everything happen for myself that I lost focus in who I desire to be as I grow. Sometimes it’s difficult to define. For now, I just most wish for the ability to forgive myself for the mistakes I made throughout the year of 2013. I wish for the ability to forgive those that may have hurt me throughout the year of 2013. I wish to forget the moments of despair and simply rememeber the good.

People experience much worse on a day-to-day basis than I experienced in all of my 2013 year of life. Even so, I must allow myself to reflect and then move forward.

 

Here’s to all of the possibilities in the world.

 

With gratitude,

Lindsey

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