at the heart of it all <3

Okay, so I’m not far off from a BIG birthday.  And, whether fortunate or not, it is a fact that you learn a lot by this time.  So much in life changes so quickly and college can speed that process up by a lot.  For me, there have been lessons I am grateful to have learned, but some part of me wishes I didn’t have to, and some lessons that feel more like lifesavers.  However, I learned they are all necessary and will never go away.  My advice is to be grateful.  I fully believe with all my heart that everyone and everything happens for a reason, and you can learn something from everything.  The difficulties in life can be scary and frustrating to go through, but they are the reason we KNOW the good stuff is good and that it is SO good.  Four years in the making and I can say that one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned is to be true to myself, even if I am not sure what that means.  I need to invest time in learning about myself, what I believe, and what is at the core of my soul.  Love others, but don’t forget to love yourself; care for yourself; believe in yourself.



Why expression can be a door to the soul…

In every form of expression-dance, art, writing, likes, dislikes, possessions, activities, dreams, etc.-the person is revealed.  If you look at something as simple as someone’s stack of mail, you can tell so much.  If you pay attention closely to a person’s quirks, you can tell even more.  Every choice a person makes and every detail about their life is a door to the soul, you just have to have the right key to unlock it.  Notice the little things, and life will be enriched.

Don’t wait for a life-or-death moment to realize…

They say, “resistance is futile,” and to some extent I agree with that, but people can only change so much.  So, I would say try not to get caught in a disappointment.  However, on the flip side of that, it is important to realize what is a priority and spend time accordingly.  Many times we get caught up in the whirlwind of life and we forget to stop and smell the roses.  It is no coincidence that many people change their lives drastically and cut out the unnecessary after a life-or-death moment; they help to appreciate the good things in life and let go of the bad.  So many times we are stuck in a rut, be push through and live up to the list of priorities you set.


Set your phasers on…automatic?

Our automatic response is to defend ourselves and attack others.  And this makes sense; no one likes to have their character attacked and in response we feel we need to question others’ character.  It’s the classic bully phenomenon; bully because others bully you or so others don’t bully you.  But this kind of response takes a toll on the people we care about the most.  {This entry piggy-backs on an earlier entry of mine: “Love means… (for every relationship).}  I have found that in close relationships, I seem to get in a rut of responses.  And we all do it.  An accurate example of this is tonight when my mother assumed I had an accusatory and hurtful motive behind asking her if she had found something I asked her earlier in the day to find for me.  I had just returned from an errand and only wondered if she had found what I asked for.  I had no ill-mannered intentions behind the question, but since many times interactions in our family are with a rude tone and I was asking if it was done, she assumed I was upset and thought I was upset it had not been done.  Now, she is not the only one that does this by far.  I will be the first to admit I do this all the time.  So much of the time we walk around without being 100% conscientious of what is really going on around us.  We live life in a blur, so it is no wonder we have the same reactions and assume the worst.  But how do we fix this problem and make the most of the time with those we care about?  I don’t have all the answers, but if I have learned one thing, it is important to you can set your ego aside and admit when you’re wrong and ill-mannered.  It is okay to make mistakes as long as in the future we make a concise effort to avoid the same mistakes, pluck up the courage to say we’re sorry, and treat others with the respect we would want for ourselves, especially those we care about.

Why we devote time to a good story…

Hope.  A good book, or a touching song.  We devote time to these things because they remind us of how hopelessly, romantically beautiful life can be.  And it can be anything that makes you feel this way.  It could be a special someone, or watching a sweet interaction between a grandfather and grandchild.  You know that feeling you get after you reach the end of a movie (no, not a horror film, thriller, or action movie), and you feel so happy, as though you can conquer the world?  We are relentlessly hopefuls and look for what gives life the “joie de vivre”; grasping on to that fleeting moment of happiness.  Keep grasping those little moments the movies remind you off; they are what make life precious.


Love means… (for every relationship)

What I’ve learned from my years of experience is that love is a CHOICE.  Love is both given freely and received freely.  The word love is overused.  The meaning of love is altruistic.  It is a respect given from someone to another.  While the word love seems almost meaningless (because it is said so often) and empty, the feeling of love is powerful.  It’s been a good few years since meeting my best friends, and while they mean a tremendous amount, of which I cannot even express, we have our fair share of fights.  Every caring gesture on their part is a choice.  They give their love and care freely.  No one is forcing them to love me, or me to love them.  It is a choice, that despite my shortcomings and mistakes and quirks, they love me.  And it goes that way for every relationship.  But while we each care a lot for each other, I realized that I started counting their actions.  Not specifically like a tally, where they did this nice favor but oh then this thing offended me.  It did seem however that their love felt only as tangible as each nice action and cordial encounter.  This is not fair.  No one should feel like their actions are counted either for or against them.  And just like that, I made out their love to be conditional.  But that is not love.  “Love is never having to say you’re sorry.”  (Like I said in my first post, cliches are cliches for a reason.)  And that is true; it is the unconditional respect, care, and trust for the other person.  A few days ago, I read an article.  It was about a young wife who realized that she dug into her husband on every little detail she considered an offense.  Even though he cared for her unconditionally and everything he did was intended for her benefit, she would yell at him for getting the wrong kind of meat, and other things along those lines.  She realized that it was absurd to belittle him over differences and count his actions against him.  See we are so hungry to love and be loved, but we turn that into counting actions and starting fights (and the worst part is, we don’t even realize it!).  I have found that it is important to be intentional with your actions, and when you mess up you make it right.  I am by no means mistake-proof, but I need to put forth the effort to know that they give me that unconditional love, to give unconditional love to others, and stop counting actions as if someone will win.  No one wins when love is conditional.  I urge you to take a look at your actions and how you treat those you count as your loved ones.  Is that love conditional?  What matters is that you don’t continue to make the same mistakes.

Below is the article I reference in this post.  Enjoy!:

“More than a feeling…”

Saturdays feel like home.  Or, at least they do to me.  I remember growing up, and every Saturday was devoted to grocery shopping, lawn mowing, weed pulling, and the occasional family outing.  After leaving home, these were the days I missed most; the days when we were just doing regular things, but we were doing them as a family.  Saturdays feel like home because Saturdays are about family.  I can classify this feeling into one phrase, “more than a feeling.”  Every time we were out-and-about as a family, my dad was the radio dj.  He loves what my brother and I like to call “old fogie” music.  Anyway, so one of the old foggy bands he listened to was Boston band, which to this day holds a special place in my heart.  It was frequent that on a Saturday or Sunday out together, Boston band would come on the radio.  This song is what Saturdays feel like to me and it takes me back to those family days where it was the four of us against the world.