Social media is my life and I hate it.
Saying that sounds so stupid, but it is true. I basically majored in it in college with my Communication degree with concentrations in digital media and sociology. Every internship I've ever had has been running social accounts for companies or universities. I was very involved in extracurriculars and in nearly every organization, I ran the social accounts. I got a personal phone call from one of the Cincinnati mayoral candidates to work on their social team and was added to a grass roots social group for another.
It is my life.
But I also feel like it is ruining my life.
I'm going to be honest with you all, I'm going through a hard time right now. I'm a cliché as I'm a recent grad who feels "lost". I'm living at my parents house, probably going to grad school abroad, but even questioning that now. My friends are all moving on and I've realized that it isn't as easy to feel surrounded by loved ones when everyone doesn't go to the same bars, meetings, classes, coffee shops, and parties on a weekly basis. I just went through a shitty breakup following a pretty shitty relationship. I hate the way my body looks and I hate the way I feel about my appearance. I'm kind of at this point where I go from bed to work and back to bed. Repeat. It is pretty shitty.
I did not realize how much social media feeds the shittiness and, subsequently, how I'm feeding social media.
Social Media Feeds the Shittiness:
Snapchat. Twitter. Instagram. Facebook. Snapchat. Twitter. Snapchat. Yelp. Instagram. Twitter. Facebook. Linkedin. Facebook. Twitter. Yelp. Instagram. Twitter. Twitter. Snapchat. Instagram. Linkedin.
This is what my day looks like. The background changes (work and bed mostly) but the subject is the same. Now, I'll argue to my grave that social media is an AMAZING thing. You can keep in contact with a friend across the world, check out reviews of a new restaurant, ask for book recommendations, send ugly selfies to your best friend, show pictures from vacation to your grandma in Alabama, start social movements, and more from your smartphone. It is pretty amazing.
The problem is, because my life outside of my phone feels so dull, social media is my life. Of course this can be good because it gives me something, but god can it be toxic.
Open Snapchat--see friends having fun on a boat day drinking, see exes with new girls, friends studying abroad taking selfies at the Eiffel Tower.
Open Instagram--"happy 4 years to my best friend and the best boyfriend ever", "I'm so proud of myself, I finally hit the 50 pound mark. I never post pictures like this but here is a before and after", boomerangs of mimosas at brunch
Open Facebook--vacation albums, "I'm so humbled and honored to announce that I got my dream job at..."
Open Twitter--Trump, Tomi Lahren, ironicly self-depricating tweet in an effort to go viral, celebrities doing things, bomb went off here, cop shot this person, look at this person yelling at my mom for speaking Spanish.
But, to be honest, It is all sucking me dry.
I think I used to be able to ignore it? Or maybe things didn't used to be so bad? Maybe my social feed parallels my life? I don't know.
But it is making me feel shitty.
Yes, of COURSE, I cry laughing at funny memes or the gif of Tyra Banks saying "Hoe but make it fashion", I'm so happy for my friends in happy relationships or scoring amazing jobs, I love a good Tasty cooking video. I'm not an animal. I'm notorious for setting pictures of my friend's good news fb posts as my phone wallpaper because they make me feel warm and fuzzy and emotional and proud.
I don't mean to take away from that and I don't want to appear as if I think you shouldn't post whatever the heck you want on social media. Because you should.
The problem is me.
I internalize all this stuff and store it in my mind. Then at night when I'm laying in my bed and crying to my Adele / Sam Smith playlist, I think about it.
I then add to the shittiness.
I've been so negative on social media lately and I'm SO sorry.
Part of me is like *whatever fam it is my account*, but the other 90% of me is upset about it.
I'm so sorry I add to the negativity we already experience on a daily basis via social media with my petty garbage. I'm so sorry that a stranger could open my twitter and think I'm some whiney, negative person.
I keep tweeting or Snapchating stuff and deleting it less than 10 minutes later because I'm so embarrassed that I shared that. Then I feel WORSE.
I don't even post because I want attention. In fact, usually someone replying sparks me to delete the post. I guess I post because I feel like I should. I never want to come across fake or like I'm hiding something, which is ironic considering that social media is just a cess pool of filters, edited text, captions that took 2 hours to come to be, and sharing of "good news".
I wish I knew the happy medium between raw and honest and oversharing. Every millenial gets told daily that any employer can see what we post, etc.
Millenial: I'm going to have some water.
Baby Boomer: Stuff on the internet is forever you know! A potential employer could GOOGLE you!
But what do I post if I have nothing nice to say?
Nothing Abby. That is what I need to do. That is what I haven't been doing.
So what is I'm taking a break from social media for the first time in my life because I finally can. I'm not running a company or organization's social and I don't need Facebook Messenger as the only form of contact between myself and my long distance bf (rip). Funny thing is, I always hated people who gave up social media because they're usually like vegans when it comes to telling people. (sorry vegans)
Me: I need to charge my phone
Vegan: I'm a VEGAN. I don't need ANIMAL products.
Like u ain't speshel. It is ironic that I'm saying that as I'm publicly "announcing" gicing up social media for a while. But I'm not doing this to seem like I'm so special or to make you feel guilty for social media or even because I think I'm famous and need to tell my fans not to expect me. I don't know why I'm doing this. Maybe you feel the same way. Maybe you have advice. Maybe reading this will inspire you to not feed the garbage.
I'm just at this sick point where I have bad feelings or thoughts and I automatically and instantly think of a clever and catchy way to package it for social media. I think a lot of us do this with all things good or bad. We go out to eat with friends--oo picture for insta. Our S/O gets us flowers--oo snapchat. Bad haircut---Insta with funny caption.
I'm going to work on taking those bad feelings or thoughts and dealing with them.
Yeah it is funny to tweet "Me: I'm going to get serious about my weight loss; Also me: Mac Monday at Keystone" with a good Kermit meme. And it feels good to get 17 likes and 3 RTs including one from Keystone. But a week later, I still feel bad about the way my body looks. (Fictional but realistic situation)
It is cute to tweet that a customer offered me the number for her therapist and its fun to get a lot of likes, but I should maybe instead call her therapist, ya know.
It is even fun to Instagram a throwback of you and your bff after she goes through a breakup and say something like "Just a reminder that I have the most amazing, funny, smart and beautiful best friend on the planet" but it is probably more fun to be there for the friend.
I guess I'm just rambling now. This is the point in a blog post where I suddenly feel self-conscious that I rambled, spelled shit wrong, or said something offensive or that someone will judge me for something I said or didn't say. You'll judge my intentions or my words and that is fine. I live my life worried that someone's subtweet is about me or that some person I barely knows thinks some way about me. The truth is, at the end of the day when my eyes are closed as I try to fall asleep, it is just me in there and once I block all of your gobily-goob out of there, I have to be okay with who I am, what I've said, what I've done and what I've thought.
And with that, I've deleted my social media apps and fall asleep.
Meriwether Lewis, William Clark and Sacagawea were great pioneers, but there's a new group in town. A group of powerful pioneers that have saved us all a lot of strife. I'm talking about those incredibly brave (mostly) women in TV and film who endured horrible, detrimental and destructive relationships so that we don't have to. They dated jerks, duds, and weirdos, taking us along on their emotional journeys, so that we can save ourselves from the trauma. Sometimes we learned that the guy was a dud and sometimes we learned valuable lessons about incompatibility. You could try to convince me that it is just a show/movie, but then I'm going to show you the pictures I took of myself after *that* episode of Grey's Anatomy with tears and makeup streaming down my face as I was HEAVING and you'll decide to keep quiet.
Let's review what we've learned, shall we?
Rory Gilmore of Gilmore Girls:
Dean: Dean is nice. He's just a nice guy and there are not valid reasons for Rory to NOT date him. He's the first guy to show her any interest and he's nice and tall and pretty handsome, so she dates him. But guess what people? Nice isn't a good enough reason to date someone. I have a big urge to say "NICE DON'T PAY THE BILLS", but like.....that doesn't work here. We aren't paying bills. Nice doesn't give you butterflies. Nice isn't that za za zoo (Grey's reference). Thank you Rory for dating wet blanket Dean for us.
Jess: Oh Jess. We all need to date a Jess. It was actually Jess who inspired this whole post. I am rewatching Gilmore Girls and one night I wrote a 3 page document about how everyone needs to date a Jess. Jess is a bad boy. Women have an instinct to be the one to tame him. Jess is brooding and mysterious and he's fun and exciting. Jess is also kind of a wiener. He knows that Rory is entranced by him and he takes advantage of it by being rude and distant. Not that there is anything wrong with being very physical in a relationship BUT when the physical part masks the emotional parts of a relationship, there is a problem. Jess and Rory fight because JEss is being a wiener and then they just make out. Rory and Jess have the relationship where everyone else is like come on RORY!!!! Are you BLIND!? Rory tries to act like they jut don't get it but when LITERALLY everyone thinks you're being nutso, there is probably a problem. Thank you Rory for dating exciting, physical, sexy, brooding, asshole Jess for us.
Logan: Ah Logan. Logan seems like the perfect man at first--too good to be true. He is handsome, brilliant, interesting, and the family fortune does not hurt his cause. He is incredibly charming. He is totally born for wooing women. He is like the Harry Styles of Yale. (Sorry. My wifi was out so I watched the entire One Direction DVD including special features). Here is the thing about the Logans: they know they are charming and are wooing the pants off of every person they meet. That is a lot of ego and a lot of charisma for us to deal with. It also puts the Logans in a lot of power in the relationship. Not healthy. We all will always struggle with the world's Logans. Thank you Rory for dating charismatic, too perfect, pretty boy Logan for us.
Brooke Davis of One Tree Hill:
Bartender Owen: If you forgot Owen, I understand. He was the bartender that Brooke dated for a second. He also helped her when they found Rachel overdosed in her LA apartment. That is when we learned of Owen's dark past. Hey. Everyone has a past. We all have baggage. Here is the thing, you owe it to yourself to not have to hold all the responsibility to fix someone. You want someone who is going to support you as you support them. Someone who is going to lift you when you need it and someone who leans on your support when he/she/they need it. When it is 100% them needing you forever, that just isn't fair to you. Also, Brooke's dream was to have a baby her entire life. When the opportunity fell in her lap, Owen bolted. I GET it. It wasn't his dream but come on dude. There are better ways to deal with it. Thank you Brooke for dating heavy Owen for us.
Meredith and George: Sigh. Any Grey's fan cringes remembering when Meredith hooked up with George. George, sweet, wet noodle George had the biggest school girl crush on our darling Mere. Mere was in a vulnerable place and SCREWED UP and hooked up with George. She also cried during the sex. We all CRINGE. It was so awkward and sad. George was obviously mortified and damaged by the trauma. We all, however, learned a valuable lesson. (hopefully) (I'm not so sure because I see this a lot). Just because you can't think of a big reason NOT to date (or whatever) someone, doesn't mean you should be with them. The opposite of love is indifference. You can't date someone because you feel bad for them or because they like you and they are nice. Listen. Nice ain't the za za zoo. Nice causes you to cry during a hook up because you're thinking of Derek. (Derek, in this case, is literally what Mere was thinking but metaphorically Derek represents the chemistry we all seek. The excitement we all deserve). Thank you Mere for dating the guy you pitied so we don't have to.
Stephanie and Jackson: Has there ever been an on screen romance with less chemistry ever in the history of television? No. The answer is no. This is a CLASSIC example of the over correction. Jackson with with April and it was complicated. SHOOOO we, was it complicated. (but it was RIGHT) (sorry, besides the point). When he and April broke up, he got with *ugh* Stephanie. They had no chemistry, but she was obsessed with him so things really weren't complicated. She just did whatever he wanted. This doesn't work people. Just because your last partner was an asshole, doesn't mean you go to the overly nice person (who is boring). Just because your last partner was really smart doesn't mean you go to a dummy. Sigh. No. Thank you Jackson for dating the over correction so we don't have to.
April and Matthew: Another Grey's relationship that made me think *wow if this actually works out this show is worse at chemistry than I thought and I quit love*. April and Matthew sounded great on paper. She was a Doctor and he an EMT. They both loved Jesus and were "saving themselves for marriage". They were both from small towns with small town values. They both were really sweet and innocent. Okay but where is the chemistry. April and Matthew are a classic example of sounds good on paper. I think even a match maker would have paired them up on a tv show, but they'd meet and be so bored. I see this a lot. Like the classic sorority girl dates a classic fraternity man. Great. Omg our moms are both teachers, we should date. No it doesn't work like that. Humans are complicated. Thank you April for dating the "sounds good on paper" guy so we don't have to.
How I Met Your Mother:
Robin and Ted/Barney: I could talk on and on about how the only good couple on HIMYM was Lily and Marshall. No, not even Robin and Barney and for sure not Robin and Ted. Maybe in another life, they would have worked, but not in their current lives. They were friends for so long, which is fine and sometimes blossoms into a great relationship, but the problem was that their mutual friends put SO much pressure on their romantic relationship that it ruined it. The were like hmm we are friends and everyone thinks we should be together so sure wanna date. Likeeeeeeeee no. It just didn't work. We all knew it when we looked at them as individuals. Ugh. Thank you Robin for forcing yourself to love a friend so we don't have to endure the awkwardness.
Allie and Lon: You just read that and thought wait.....The Notebook is one of the most popular romance movies of this generation. Yes true. But I'm not talking about Allie and Noah (who had their own issues), I'm talking about Allie and that other guy--Lon. Allie and Lon had a cute story. As a military nurse, she nursed him back to health from the time he was in a full body cast. He joked that he was going to take her out when he was better and she said something to the effect of "Ha K." Several years later, Allie was walking out of Sarah Lawrence, her college and a handsome (!!!!) man was leaning against a nice car staring at her. Boom. Lon the bandaged soldier. Cute. Fine. He is smoking hot, rich, charismatic, and worships the ground on which Allie walks. Sounds great. It is a storybook story. But Lon was not the one for her!!! Lon is a perfect example of the guy that sounds good but just isn't. Just because it sounds like a plot for a Nicholas Sparks movie, doesn't mean it is what is going to work. (Hulllooooo Allie needed to be with Noah!!!) Thank you Allie for dating the storybook lover so we could learn what real love is.
Big Bang Theory
Leonard and Penny: For the record, I think that Big Band Theory is the absolute worst show on TV. I can't stand any part of it. However, my parents think it is "just a a HOOT!", so I know about many of the people on the show. Leonard is the epitome of the nerd archetype. Not attractive, very smart, socially awkward. Penny is the epitome of the dumb blonde archetype. Beautiful, dumb, all physical no mental. They couple up and we're like okay, maybe opposites attract. No. Because Penny is walking around like he's too smart for me and Leonard is like oh she's too pretty for me. It is a weird worship relationship. I can agree that to some extent, one should think they lucked out in their relationship and that the other person is just amazing. They should think "wow how did I get so lucky?". But there is a line. Worship is on the other side of the line. Worship to the point that you think you need them is on the other side of the line as well. Thank you Leonard for dating your exact opposite so we don't have to worship someone.
Sex in the City:
Big and Carrie: He's TORTUOUS. Satan. Big makes Carrie worship him with everything he does by charming the pants off of her (literally). However and this is a BIG however (see what I did there?), he is rude!!!! He toys with her like she is his yoyo. When he goes too far or when she or when starts to think wait maybe he sucks (like when he STANDS HER UP AT THE ALTAR), he does another grand gesture likes buys her an apartment or new shoes or takes her to Paris or something. It is MANIPULATIVE. I'm not having it. Even though they end up together (sigh), thank you Carrie for dating charms your pants off but is manipulative Big so we don't have to be TORTURED.
Danny and Sandy: Oy vey. This movie is built on the premise of if you changed yourself you will get the man/woman. It is silly. We all know it is but don't act like you don't see it all the time! Let me paint a picture. A brainy, quiet girl who doesn't really drink gets dragged to a welcome weekend fraternity house party and meets the ultimate frat star---I'm talking a button down oxford, Patagonia vest, and Bean Boots. He is wasted but really cute and shows her attention she hasn't gotten in the past. A year later you see her on Facebook posting pictures of her at Risky Business Fraternity themed parties wearing a mens button down and boxers with high socks with blurred, red eyes captioned "blurry nights with this guy <3". Great. Don't do that. Sandy/Danny, thank you for changing who you are 100% to please someone you are courting so they fall in love with a fake you.
50 Shades of Grey:
Anastasia and Christian: elle oh elle. Not taking this one.
Here is the bottom line.
We're all weird. We're all messed up. But at least these ladies and gentlemen helped me realize what weird we are and are not compatible with. Does it really matter, though? Or will we still just have to try the Dean/Jess/Logan/Owen/George/Stephanie/Matthew/Robin/Lon/Penny/Big/Sandys for ourselves? Spoiler alert: We will. We will match with boys on tinder who have the confederate flag in the background. We will Facebook message guys who say they have no real hobbies or passions in life because nothing makes them excited in life at all. We will be attracted to that guy that *everyone* is attracted to and you just hate yourself for doing it too. We will talk to the *safe* guy that all of our friends say we should give a chance. et al.
This is because, well, kids......love is a battlefield. Okay yeah, but love is also a new territory purchased by America from France that you have to discover with your pal and a native american woman. Or you could just stay home watching Amanda Knox Documentaries while drinking straight from a bottle of Pinot Grigio. You could also just do that.
(That was me being Adam Levine singing that line in Payphone.)
If I've seen you lately, I've probably (over) shared with you that I'm having some existential crises. Sorry Starbucks barista. Sorry Kroger night time security guy. Sorry friends. Sorry twitter followers. An existential crisis is "when the answers to the questions about the meaning and purpose of life no longer provide satisfaction, direction or peace of mind." Aka me everyday. Sorry best friend Lauren. Sorry roommate Maddie. Sorry European ex-boyfriend.
A year from now, my schedule will be 100% empty. I will be finished with school, graduated with degrees in who knows what. I will be unemployed, as my student worker jobs expire when my student status does. Also, I will be broke because the day I walk across the stage is the day the nip of mom and dad's financial nourishment dries up. (Ok dramatic, my parents wouldn't just let me go hungry and homeless, but like.....they'd let me get close to build character. Y'all keep me humble).
These are scary things. I do stupid things like look up unemployment rates for millennials, cost of living statistics, and yahoo answers results for "How sad will I be if I have to move back in with my parents?". I also make (bomb) playlists called Angsty on Spotify of all my favorite 2000s alternative "I'm so misunderstood" bands. Listen here, you're welcome. I Google "Movies that do not have a happy ending on Netflix" and "Movies where a girl ends up single but is still okay and cool".
It is a scary time to be alive. In fact, life gets scarier the more years I live.
The funny thing is, we are conditioned to believe everything will be okay. Check out any girl's quote board on Pinterest and you'll see a million quote graphics basically saying 'Girl chill you gud'. But in all honesty, life does not owe us anything. It is not like everything is just going to be fine because you're a good person. It does not work that way. Life is emotionless. Life does not care if you are happy or sad. Life just is. All of those inspirational quotes we pin, Instagram, Tweet and recite to our friends on a bad day are not necessarily factual, but they serve a greater purpose. They make us optimistic and keep us looking to the next step in hopes that it will be better. Sometimes the next step is not really better, but we are just stronger. (I know you all just gagged at that sentence, but bear with me). It's all about perspective.
Which brings me to a realization I had a few weeks ago. I even tweeted about it. (This is sarcastic, of course I tweeted about it. I tweet about everything from life shattering news like Harry Styles cutting his hair to just a shout out to a really good bagel).
It's cheesy, yes. But 1. Everyone loves cheese. 2. It's #tru
I was watching The Holiday (not a movie that comes up when you Google "Movies that do not have a happy ending on Netflix") when it hit me. The movie is about Jude Law being a total hot dad. Okay, kidding. It's about Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet swapping homes for a week because their lives are in the toilet. I know the story wasn't a competition, but if it were, Cameron won because she gets Jude Law and Kate gets Jack Black. Anyway, there is this scene where Kate is eating dinner with her old man best friend and they have the following conversation:
Arthur Abbott: He let you go. This is not a hard one to figure out. Iris, in the movies we have leading ladies and we have the best friend. You, I can tell, are a leading lady, but for some reason you are behaving like the best friend.
Iris: You're so right. You're supposed to be the leading lady of your own life, for god's sake! Arthur, I've been going to a therapist for three years, and she's never explained anything to me that well. That was brilliant. Brutal, but brilliant.
Maybe it was because I was feeling vulnerable after seeing Jude Law shirtless (ok I'll stop), or maybe it was the (third) glass of wine, but I felt like I got smacked in the face.
Listen. I'm a woman and charge and I know it. My roommate, Maddie Landon, actually had a quote of mine in her twitter bio reading "I'm a woman going places, either keep up or get out of my way." Sorry not sorry. But I've realized that anytime something is not going well in my life, it is because I'm letting something else have the lead role in the story of my own life.
Let's break down what 'supporting actress' means.
-Supporting: bear all or part of the weight of; hold up; to enable something to function or act
-Supporting actor: an actor who performs a role in a play or film below that of the leading actor(s), and above that of a bit part.
Here are some personal examples. Past, Present and Future. Gird your loins:
-I deteriorated mentally, emotionally and academically in classes and majors I hated because some people said they were smart, more marketable, and more socially acceptable. Leading role in this case: haters. (Refer to this blog post for more details on this fiasco. Oy VEY).
-I have spent a lot of time and energy absolutely hating my appearance because society and mean people tell me I'm ugly. I've made decisions about my hair, makeup and clothing, consciously and subconsciously, because of what my friends or my not friends have said. I've done very destructive things to change my body to make someone else happy. Leading role in this case: haters and my insecurities.
-I almost quit the job/internship that I love because I was told by my peers and family members that I should look for a *real* internship (whatever that means?) outside of my university. According to these people, I need to have jobs on my resume that are up to their standards. When in actuality, I love my job and I'm getting amazing experience doing exactly what I want to do. Leading role in this case: judgmental peers and family members that just know *everything* about getting hired and what's best.
- I have skipped class and plans with friends, lost sleep, drank too much wine, and worst of all--felt bad for and about myself because my study abroad fling / temporary boyfriend and I broke up and I couldn't get over it for a while. Leading role in this case: study abroad fling / temporary boyfriend who lives 5,000 miles away. (I'm sure my friends are screaming at this one and I'm dying picturing it. But I just trying to be transparent. Also Gabriel and I still maintain a healthy friendship and he's probably loving this attention. He's also probably googling what "fling" means.)
-I have been really bad at setting healthy boundaries. On the last day of my Interpersonal Communication class, my (amazing) professor gave us 6 suggestions for increasing power and competence as a communicator. It's a bomb list, tbh, but one point is: "Powerful people establish healthy boundaries". I can't say no. I might be studying for an exam I am sure to fail, but if my friend is like "hey I need someone to go to Walgreens with me and help me pick out bandaids", I'm like yes. Okay. This is my calling. I need to help! WRONG. I've skipped my own homework assignments to proof read someone else's paper, I've gone on dates I ~really~ did not want to go on, I've taken shots I didn't need (lolz), because I can't say no. Wrong! Leading role in this case: people who always get the yeses.
Okay listen. I'm not saying you should say "WHEW F EVERYONE ELSE! ALL FOR ME! I AIN'T HELPIN NOOOOO ONE!". This is different. You still should be a good person and treat others the way you want to be treated and all that stuff. But you shouldn't light yourself on fire to keep someone else warm, you feel me?
Here are some ways you can start acting like the leading actress in your own life:
1. TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF
Nothing in life is mandatory. Literally nothing. Yes, there are consequences but there is nothing you absolutely must do. So if you need to skip a mandatory meeting, call in sick to work, or rain-check a plan with a friend...I mean if you really need to, DO IT! You have to take care of yourself. Your organizations, job or even your best friends are not the lead actresses in your life. You are.
2. Find your WHY
Why are you doing what you're doing? Why are you feeling what you are feeling? Follow that.
3. Don't be so hard on yourself!!!!
You're doing just fine. Listen to your moral compass. Listen to your soul. You're okay. You woke up today, that's a start! You're doing so well!! We put so many expectations on ourselves. Impossible ones. And when we do not or can not meet them, we are so cruel to ourselves. You wouldn't let someone talk to your best friend the way you talk to yourself, would you? Like sometimes (everyday) I get out of the shower and see myself in the mirror and say the meanest things to myself in my head. You betcha if Lauren and I were at Target and some woman called her fat, ugly, unlovable, I'd knock a betch OUT. Be kind to others but be kind to yourself.
4. Have more root beer floats.
10/10 scientists agree that there is a direct correlation between root beer float consumption and happiness.
Okay, sorry this was so long. But school's out so you need to intellectually stimulate yourself by continuing to read long texts. *pretends anything I said above in intellectually stimulating lolz*
P.S. Sorry I just proofed on mobile and holy it's long. <3
We know I'm obsessed with UC, college life, my friends, and my dog. I get my confidence through my roles on campus and creating positive effects and changes in things towards which I feel passion. I feel purpose when I am at work at one of my on campus jobs. I feel my heart bursting out of my chest when I am with my friends. I cannot walk anywhere around the uptown area without seeing someone I know and can't resist hugging. After 5 majors (oops), I FINALLY feel incredibly happy with my classes, professors and departments. I'm looking into graduate programs for a field I'm absolutely in love with.
I feel an overwhelming sense of YES right now.
(kinda like this all the time, but inside:)
But does it make me totally nuts to say that I kind of don't like it.......
Okay, don't get me wrong, it is very nice to feel genuinely happy with my life. It is something that, due to mental health battles for most of my adolescent and young adult life (am I a young adult? Idk), I haven't felt for SERIOUSLY as long as I can remember. However, I do not like the feeling that I can finally take a breath (Crazy, I know). Something I have learned about myself is that I am restless. Incredibly restless. In all aspects of my life.
From small things--constantly redecorating and chopping lengths off of my hair.
To bigger things--5 majors later...whoops.
To quite large things--whoops, I'm happy and comfortable for the first time in a decade, lets pick up and move to France for four months.
But really. That's a thing that I'm doing. A thing I am doing in 6 days.
Remember when I wrote that blog post titled "I'm Happy"? (http://onefortyplus.weebly.com/blog/im-happy ) It was about how I feel so happy right now in my life and about eliminating negativity. I'm not kidding you, less than a week after I posted that blog I was in my study abroad advisors office telling her that I wanted to move my semester abroad plans from "maybe Spring" or "idk maybe senior year" to this Fall.
Putting together a semester abroad in less than three months, especially when we pieced this program together by hand to make it work for my major. (Side note: I am SO incredibly blessed that one of my on campus jobs is the study abroad office. I love them so much for so many reasons, but a big one is all of the help I received making this happen.) It was hard, but it has been incredible.
People keep asking me if I am nervous. I mean, I am going to a country whose national language is a foreign language to me. I am one of 3 americans and the only UC student, too. But I'm not nervous or anxious at all, which is strange for me because I'm one steady flow of anxious.
I'm so excited.
I'm so ready.
(unless it is about to hit me like a ton of french baguettes, which I am prepared for, but not expecting)
I'm ready like Spongebob.
My grandma and my mom (<-great duo, amazing women, but apple-tree stuff with anxiety there) are making me feel like I need to be nervous by telling me how normal it is. Well guess what, screw normal.
How am I calm? I've accepted and processed the following truths:
1. It will not be a Mary-Kate and Ashley movie all the time.
You laugh, but working in my office, I see a lot of people who have glamorized the entire idea of study abroad. It isn't a vacation in five star hotels and a personal limousine service. It is a foreign country with foreign ideas and customs, in a different language. It is not knowing anyone. It is class. Accepting that it isn't going to be perfect every second is important.
2. Classes will be hard.
People tend to delete the academics chapter of the novel of study abroad sometimes in their mind. But it is STUDY abroad. Plus I'm going to a historically very difficult school taking higher level communication courses in a masters program. So RIP me. (~luckily the classes transfer back pass fail~)
3. I have to unplug
THIS IS SO HARD. I have to release myself from Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat quite a bit. I know myself and I will drive myself crazy if I am constantly checking what everyone at home is doing. My fomo will swallow me WHOLE. Which is so stupid because, like, I'm not missing a Woody's happy hour, they're missing seeing the Eiffel Tower at dusk, right?
4. I will cry.
I will miss my friends and family and dog so much that as I'm typing this I'm getting a little choked up. But knowing that I have the strongest, most incredible support system behind me in the form of my family, best friends, orientation family, Kappa Alpha Theta sisters, work friends and incredible faculty and staff is what gives me the strength to go forward despite any fears I feel.
5. I will get fat.
6. My birthday and Thanksgiving away from friends and family will probably rip my heart out of my chest.
For now, I do not plan to keep a travel blog. Mainly, because I don't want to feel like I need to report everything I do, I just want to live my semester to the fullest. Plus, I told you that I am unplugging as much as I can. (*note I didn't say completely unplugging....I don't want you to worry that I died. And I have an addiction. So.)
Best way to keep up with the Abbydashian why she is in Nantes:
1. Add her on Facebook--Abby Marie Listerman. Her extended family is all on there and so she will be uploading pictures she took with her new beautiful nikon on there.
2. Make a FaceTime or Skype or Google Hangouts date. My parents already have every Sunday at 2pm Cincinnati time / 8pm France time blocked off, but other than that the schedule is pretty open.
Okay, that is it. My last post pre-departure. Send me good vibes and do something that scares you everyday while I'm gone.
THANKS FOR ALL YOUR SUPPORT AND LOVE I'M NOT WORTHY.
**This is my way of calling all of you IN and not calling you OUT. Calling out is publicly shaming, embarrassing, or making a spectacle of someone when they say something not okay. Calling in is being a homie, bringing the person to the side afterwards when it is one on one and being like hey can you explain to me what you meant when you said ______, then listening to them, and then explaining why it isn't cool. Making it a learning experience. Making it so being "politically correct" (<- not a fan of that phrase because it's actual meaning has been changed by the societal meaning) is not an angry thing or a thing for crazy angry people with picket signs, but a nice thing.**
Let's take it back to around 2010. I was very similar to the people saying the titular statement and other not so nice things. Similar but not the same because not as extreme and I would never have posted about it on social media, but similar because I was also uneducated. So this is a message about those of you who were just like me--not as extreme as the haters and bashers online, but a pretty confused by the idea of being trans*.
You know what? I'm going to say something you probably haven't heard in response to some of your comments being confused or being weirded out by Caitlyn Jenner's transition------> It's okay to feel uncomfortable!
But remember that the words disgusted and appalled are different than the word uncomfortable. The words disgusted and appalled have a connotation of being static--a state of not being able to be changed. The word uncomfortable suggests a dynamic state--a state where things are going to change.
I'm not perfect. Honestly, there is not never a time where I am uncomfortable by some of the issues related. But I'll tell you something completely honest, EVERY single time I have been uncomfortable, I have learned that it was because I was not educated. I did not understand. I was not used to something.
I come from a region of the USA known as the Northern Kentucky bubble. It has it's pros and cons. It was a beautiful place to live with great schools and nice people. I have no regrets about my childhood and I do not look at Northern Kentucky with any hate at all, only love. It is called the bubble because (what feels like) all of the population is a copy paste of the same person. White, Christian/Catholic, conservative, middle to upper class, heterosexual, married parents, athletic children. You can imagine it. There isn't anything wrong with being a straight white person who is christian, conservative, middle to upper class with married parents at all! It just doesn't create a very diverse environment in which to grow up.
The numbers were so few that to this day, I could name you everyone in my school or town who is not white. I could name you the students at my school that came from liberal families. For the majority of my childhood and adolescence, I grew up not knowing anyone closely who seriously financially struggled, was gay/lesbian/bisexual, and definitely no one who identified as trans*. It wasn't because we ostracized them from the town. It wasn't because you had to get an inspection at the gates and if you weren't our mold, you're out. It's just they way it was.
I'm telling you all this so you understand where I came from and so you understand that I came from the same place as many of you.
For example, we only saw gay people on TV or movies. We saw the archetypal gay best friend character who talked in a high pitch voice, wore pink and did musical theater. That was the image of gay. Not the image of the completely normal kid in our math class who just happened to be attracted to men, but the stereotype displayed by the media.
This doesn't justify hateful comments about gay people, this doesn't justify using "gay" as a derogatory term to hate or judge a boy who does theater or talks a certain way, however, it does help me to understand how you feel these things.
Trans* is an even more foreign topic to most than sexual orientation. I've seen some really really sad and angry things about Caitlyn Jenner on social media. I get it, well I don't, but I am able to empathize with the fact that you are confused. It is a foreign idea to you and it is weird and makes you uncomfortable. Maybe someone sometime told you that it is morally "wrong", maybe you saw a movie one time with a trans* person and they were weird and scary. But guess what? This is a beautiful thing! It is a learning opportunity!
If you do not get it, ask someone. If it doesn't make sense to you how someone could "just flop genders" or "destroy their family", ask someone. Here's the thing, I do not know anyone who wouldn't be willing to help you. But that is ONLY if you phrase it in a kind, genuinely curious way.
"You can't just wake up one day and decide to become the other gender just because you are bored."
"hey. So I've been reading about Caitlyn Jenner and I'm just having a hard time with it. I do not know much of anything about being trans* and I just really do not understand. Could you help me? If not do you know anyone who can or maybe a really good website or video or something?"
"You can't just decide your gender. God makes you man or woman. Science makes you man or woman biologically. You can't just deny that and choose on the fly!"
"Hey. I'm confused about how biology and like what sex you have at birth comes into play with trans*. Can you help me understand? Do you know of any good resources?"
See how that works? It's okay for you to be confused, it is okay to not understand. It really is. I am sometimes. I love asking people and I love researching. Personally, and maybe like many of you, I've never been against any of it, but sometime I just don't understand.
As far as posting on social media: *sigh*. Freedom of speech, say your beliefs, but when it is so hurtful to someone else and obviously out of ignorance, there is a problem. Before you post something, make sure you're fully educated on what you're about to post, because it is 2015 and people are going to CALL.YOU.OUT and you better know what you're talking about because, if not, you're about to be slain--given 25 to life in slay court.
Slain like I'm about to slay everything with this statement:
~~Bashing someone for being who they truly are reflects more on you than on them.~~
This isn't about religion or what is or isn't "right", this is about loving your fellow human. "I love the sinner but hate the sin" need not apply because that is being too intersectional, the person cannot be separated from his or her or their identity. You aren't loving the person if you hate who they are.
That's all I wanted to say today. I didn't want to post an angry rant about how everyone is ignorant and ugly and stupid and wrong. I wanted to call you in and say you aren't a bad person, but you can be a little better--we all can.
Love you, don't be ugly, love each other, educate yourself, educate other, call each other in.
P.S. I wanted to help you out a little bit more. Here are some really great resources about LGBTQ topics that aren't angry, accusatory, or biased, but just educational.
-A quick glossary of terms that you should know:
-Some answers to preliminary questions you may have about being trans*:
-Answers common questions about how trans* relates to crossdressing, drag, and homosexuality:
-A youtube with personal stories:
I'd be happy to help you if you need more resources or just want to talk. <3
No, Taylor Swift. No, I don't.
Let me start out by saying I am the least competitive human on the planet. I couldn't do sports--organized or even in the neighborhood--as a tot because I just did not care to win. In school gym class, we would play games of basketball and someone playing offense would come at me while I was defending and like mock smack talk or give the body language of a tease or smack talk and I would seriously step aside and be like go ahead. My entire team would hate me, but I'm just like eh pass. It's gym class. NCAA tournament time is my personal hell because of all the ugliness on social media about the game. It's so boring to me because I could not even fake caring for one minute. Now, I appreciate team spirit, school spirit, passion, etc. I really do. I love UC and the Bearcats so so so much. I'll go to a Reds game and cheer. I'll play a pick up game of basketball. But I just do not feel competitive about it. It's just a game.
At times, I am envious that I do not feel this sense of competition because it makes me feel a little broken, but it's my truth. I'm just not competitive--sports, grades, attention, anything. I guess I'm "competitive against myself", which is something that people say sometimes, but by definition of the word competition, that isn't really possible. I just have high expectations for myself.
Sports, the classroom, and love---they're all just games and I'm really not interested in playing.
*warning: this blog gets really real*
I have never been one to date around much. Or really at all. Now that I am a *mature grown up* (lol not at all), I can really see that it is because I have never liked the games. Being in college, it is actually such a ridiculous spectacle--romance. Let's just review here.
It's a Friday night and everyone is preparing for battle.
The girls have been in the bathroom for three hours. An extra long shower to prepare for the long night (and probably long morning) ahead. Shampooing and Conditioning twice for the luscious locks. Buffing and polishing every inch. Carefully shaving so everything is smooth and clean. Drying, primping, straightening, curling, teasing, spraying, fluffing, brushing her hair so it looks healthy, shiny, yet ironically effortless considering the time she put into it. Painting her face with the *right* amount of makeup because she needs some to really sparkle, but she doesn't want to look like she tried too hard. She sends countless mirror pictures of outfit options to her best friend captioned "ok but what about this one". She runs to Party Source or International Market or wherever and stocks up on whatever is going to get her drunk and get her drunk fast.
The boys....well I do not exactly know, but I'll assume theres a shower, an outfit decision, and the same trip to the liquor store.
Everyone is wondering who they will see tonight. Will I see that boy that bought be drinks the last time we were out but never actually made a move so I'm hoping he asks for my number tonight? Will I see that girl I went home with last weekend and intentionally didn't text back because I heard she was on the prowl for a boyfriend? Will I see that boy I always make-out at the end of the night when something else isn't going to happen but I won't actually give him a chance to be my first choice? Will I see my ex-girlfriend with that new guy she uses to make me jealous? Will I see that guy that texted me asking if I'm going out tonight even though I do not know what that actually means for us? Will both girls that I hooked up with last weekend be at the bar tonight? Will that guy with whom I claim to be only friends but when I'm drunk I flirt with him and now I don't know?
It all sounds exhausting. And we haven't even left our bathrooms yet. Girls have been putting on war paint to go into this battle, everyone is wondering how the game will play out.
I'm exhausted just from typing all of that. I can't do it! I just do not care enough! I watch people do this ritual every weekend and for what? To be left to spend Saturday morning in tears. To be left to swipe your life away on Tinder for the next week. To be left to post moody tweeted like "another one bites the dust...".
It shouldn't have to be like that. I truly believe it isn't like that, but we make it that way. We've all gotten stuck in this never ending carousel that someone just has to stop. Easier said than done, right?
Here are a few simple ways you can refuse to play the game, this goes for all genders:
Let's elaborate on point 11, shall we? Because this one seems to be very hard for everyone, myself included. When our expectations, hopes, etc do not align with someone else's we tend to distance ourselves from them by using some ugly titles. We've all had *those* people who seem to be seriously crazy. Maybe they KEEP texting you when you said stop, maybe they show up everywhere you seem to be, or something else. But you have to step back and look at it from their point of view. We've all been on the other side. (Maybe we didn't take it to the extreme that they did). But we've all bee the heartbreakee. I do not even like calling it that because sometimes you aren't even heartbroken, but you just wanted something the other person did not. You all know what that feels like. Even though this person is texting you non-stop, showing up at the bar, telling his/her friends about you, etc, you have to give them a little credit. At least they are trying! At least they are putting themselves out there for the prize. Maybe the prize isn't you (you are a prize, sweet cheeks, but just not this persons), but the prize is love or something i don't know puke. If we do not stop calling people who are willing to look stupid, seem crazy, or do not know when to stop thinks like clingy, desperate, crazy, obsessed, stalkerish then we are going to scare everyone off from taking a chance, being bold, and trying!
I'm not saying what they are doing is right or cool, but let me give you an example. You have this person who you, I dunno, kissed at the bar one time. Whoopsy. They're nice enough and you always have good conversations but you really didn't mean to kiss them because you just aren't interested in that way. No problem. They text you the next day and are trying to go on a date. You politely tell said person like hey you rock but I'm just not interested in that. I know we kissed but to me, it was just a kiss I hope we can be friends okay bye. So then this person goes a little too far and texts you every weekend night for the next three months *how did they get my number omg*. They show up at your friends parties. Too much dude. So you call your friend and you're like "OMG what do I do? That person I kissed at the bar last month is a *crazy* person, *stalking me*, seriously *obsessed with me*, gosh so *desperate*, why are they so *clingy*." Now your friend who kissed someone at the bar last night was about to ask you what they should say to person they kissed because they want to hang out again and I told them I would text in the AM, but now friend is like omg I'm going to looks *crazy*, *stalky*, *obsessive*, *desperate*, *clingy*, I'm not doing it. Great. So the person they kissed was also very interested, but didn't receive a correspondence this morning, thus is like dang it I'm hideous people only want to kiss me when they're drunk I'm so stupid I'm forever alone blah blah.
See how that happens? See where all the issues arise?
It's all very exhausting. It shouldn't have to be like this. It doesn't have to be like this.
Someone famous said "be the change you want to see in the world". I have no idea who, but it's a good one. Ghandi? Maya Angelou? Beyonce? Not sure.
So, if Taylor Swift is right and love is a game, what happens if we all just stop playing?
If you read my high school blog, you know I have a thing for weird Netflix stuff. When I am between series, I'll dig myself deep into the depths of Netflix and barely survive, but come back with great stories. Now, I share them with you.
Not all of this stuff is that weird, some of it you've probably seen, but I'm always surprised when I meet people who do not get my Unbreakable references, so things aren't always obvious. And I'm also always surprised when I find beloved classics on the 'Flix that maybe you didn't know were just a click away.
So, here is a list I've created. I probably forgot a lot, but these are memorable. Let it be known that I've watched a ton more on Netflix than these 19 titles....like I obviously devoured Grey's and One Tree Hill three times each. These are the ones I wanted to share. Instead of doing plot summaries, I'm doing plot in a sentence, pro in 5 words, con in 5 words and favorite character. I'll try to avoid spoilers.
***= Really good must watches
HERE WE GO
IN NO ORDER
1. UNBREAKABLE **
plot: Kimmy is rescued from a cult, moves to New York City and has to try to thrive in the world she thought ended.
pro: HILARIOUS. CLEVER. QUOTABLE. PINOT NOIR
con: humor sometimes lost on old-people. (hyphenated so it counts)
Favorite character: DR. FRANFF. I can't breathe thinking about him. (Even though it is really sad that the doctor who he is allegedly based off of committed suicide:
2. GRACE AND FRANKIE
plot: Theres these two couples. 70s. The husbands have been law partners for 20 years and are homies. The wives are very different---country club bougie brat (Grace) and artsy pot head hippy (Frankie). The husbands come out as gay and gay together and now Grace and Frankie are suddenly in the same boat.
pro: funny, clever, killer cast->FONDA
con: might be funnier for old-people
favorite character: Frankie. She is everything I want to be at 70, but won't.
3. HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL
plot: classic. Jocky Troy and nerdy Gabriella both burst out of the status quo by auditioning for their high school's musical.
pro: CLASSIC. The music slays me.
con: fine maybe isn't cinematically impressive
favorite character: Chad aka Corbin Bleu. He only speaks in puns and cliches.
4. NATIONAL TREASURE
plot: Following in his family's treasure hunting history, Ben and his sidekicks take you on a journey through history to find the knights templar treasure!
pro: history geeks unite. Nick Cage
con: anxiety, can't sleep after, TREASURE
favorite character: Patrick Gates, Ben's dad. Mostly because whenever I see Jon Voight, I picture him walking around like Mr. Sir in holes spitting sunflower seeds. I live and die for Mr. Sir.
5. THE BABYSITTERS
plot: Girl starts a babysitting business that is actually a prostitution ring for the fathers!
pro: plot twists, not-bad-for indie film (I'm pushing it with the 5 words, I know).
con: most monotone cast ever; unsettling
favorite character: (none of the characters are really likable. I mean cheating dads or teen prostitutes, but) Nadine. Because she's a boss ass bitch who is like no I'm starting my OWN prostitution ring I'm sick of giving Shirley 30%! Yahs girl!
6. THEY CAME TOGETHER
plot: Satirical movie in which Paul Rudd and Amy Poehler make fun of romantic comedies in the most ridiculous love story ever. Besides Twilight.
pro: PAUL RUDD. AMY POEHLER. CANDY
con: kinda stupid. barely funny (note: satires aren't that funny to me, so this is a personal thing)
favorite character: Roland. He was Paul Rudd's boss and pooped his pants at the halloween party. And he is played by the hot in a weird you're not a silver fox yet kind of way in Law and Order SVU.
7. STUCK IN LOVE
plot: Quirky love tale about a family and their love antics...seperately...not together...this isn't an incest movie. But it is funny and cute and weird and sad.
pro: Known character, unknown movie. GOOD
con: not earth-shattering or ground breaking
favorite character: The dad played by Greg Kinnear. First, I'm a huge fan of Kinnear in general. Secondly, I loved his character. He's this brooding author who lives at a beach house, is a great dad and also is OBSESSED with his ex-wife. I love his dedicated to the cause. (The cause is love).
8. REMEMBER ME
plot: Set in NYC, Tyler is struggling after a huge loss and his dad really sucks a lot and he meets Ally who really gets him. Also he is the cutest big brother of all time.
pro: big brother scenes, AMAZING ENDING
con: RPatz really sucks at acting (he was nominated for a Razzie LOL)
favorite character: The little sister. She's cute and fun.
9. ASK ME ANYTHING
plot: Really quirky girl takes a gap year between high school and college and keeps a very intense blog chronicling her sex/drug/crazy life.
pro: surprising ending, intense, good message
con: leaves you wanting more
favorite character: Justin Long. Not his character so much--he's skeezzzy, but I just love Justin Long.
10. IN YOUR EYES**
plot: (I sincerely couldn't describe this without it sounding terrible so I copied Netflix's description and tweaked it) Two very different strangers on opposite ends of the country have a telepathic bond that lets each one see what the other sees, a deep connection that leads to love. (It sounds weird but it just works in the movie)
pro: so good, unique, good ending
con: telepathic sex is weird
favorite character: Dylan. He's the male protagonist. I just fell in love with him from the beginning. Such a kind guy. Also ruggedly handsome. I dig it.
11. WHITE BIRD IN A BLIZZARD
plot: Quirky movie (like it showed at Sundance) in which 17 year old Kat's mother goes missing. She lives it up in the beginning and then it really effects her. (This movie has a very lovely bones vibe to it). (It's also really creepy sometimes). (Also it has Shailene Woodley) (Also it is based off on a book).
pro: solid cast, lots of twists
con: No likable characters I need to empathize!!
favorite character: ^^^^^
12. THE CROODS**
plot: A Dreamworks animated movie about a cave family in prehistoric times. Okay, lets note that I would have never watched this on my own by homie Nathan all but made me the other night and it was SO GOOD. I laughed and cried. It also has high ratings on Netflix and critically. (Academy Award nominee 2014).
pro: SO FUNNY, surprisingly intelligent, amazing animation
con: I truly have none
favorite character: Douglas the dog.
plot: It's a biopic of 70s porn star Linda Lovelace as represented by Amanda Seyfried. She was coerced into porn by an abusive dude and takes control of her life.
pro: time period stuff is GREAT, good story (I'm cheating with the 5 words, over it)
con: very disturbing, pace is slow (so it goes with biopics)
favorite character: Had to be Linda herself. First, I love Seyfried but also, Linda was one of the few sympathetic characters in the entire film. She needed a hug.
14. WORLDS GREATEST DAD
plot: Robin Williams (cries already), a writer, plays the single father of a (really rude and angry) kid who accidentally killed himself doing some erotic self-mutilation thing, so to cover his family from embarrassment, Robin writes a really amazing suicide note.
pro: gets real about bullying and suicide; ROBIN WILLIAMS AND THE KID FROM SPY KIDS
con: very disturbing and sad
favorite character: It's gotta be Robin. He was the best actor by FAR in the movie, and you just feel so bad as you watch him dig himself into a hole of grief.
15. REVIVING OPHELIA
plot: One of those cheesy Lifetime movies that I adore about a girl being abused by her high school boyfriend. It keeps you on your toes and anxious.
pro: GOOD topic to talk about
con: terrible acting, cheesy
favorite character: Marie. The teen girl's mom. She slayed. She's also the mom in Malcom in the Middle.
16. AFTER PORN ENDS
plot: A documentary on porn stars after they leave the industry. They all have a variety of reasons for entering and exiting the industry. It is very interesting!
pro: super good stuff
con: you'll become that weird friend who knows too much about the porn industry
favorite character: Richard Pacheco! He was so likable and just did porn for a while and now he is just a normal guy and living his life.
plot: A documentary that you've probably seen that absolutely SLAYS Seaworld and other forms of whale commercial captivity. SLAYS!!!
pro: gets you fired up! (If you don't leave a whale activist, I'll pay you $10)
con: Obviously a very one sided documentary
favorite character: Tilikum! Yahs whale! You cry out for help, baby! I'm coming to save ya.
18. LARS AND THE REAL GIRL**
plot: Ryan Gosling plays a sweet but really weird and socially awkward guy in a small town who has no social skills, so naturally he buys a sex dog online, names her Bianca and develops a romantic relationship with her. The whole town goes along with it for Lars' sake.
pro: Hits on some GOOD topics about mental health and Ryan SLAYS
con: Really sad to watch
favorite character: Obviously it's going to be Ryan Gosling. Not only is he bae, but he is an amazing actor in this role. He was nominated for some big awards for his performance in Lars and the Real girl. He plays a socially awkward, probably schizophrenic man with extreme grace. They also made him kinda ugly for the role.
19. FREAKS AND GEEKS
plot: A series about high school life in the 1980s for the outcasts. The star studded cast (Franco, Rogan, Segal) represents the burnout stoners and the nerdy geeks in high school. It's only one season and we are bummed.
pro: star studded cast, VERY funny in a quirky way
con: only one season!!!
favorite character: HAVERCHUCK. I added this character to this list just so I could type about Haverchuck. I'll put a picture of him below. I'm so in love with him. The nerdiest creature on television. He did a prank call once and said "Fredericks? You're a turd. A stinky f-fat turd. Go sniff a jock strap, you poop head. You love patting boys' butts. You love patting boys' butts. Butt... you butt-patter! You're a perv and a loser... and a stinky... t-turd! " more: http://www.imdb.com/character/ch0021370/quotes
(I'll say it again incase you didn't read the title slash for emphasis) I'm Happy
This is something in 20.5+ years of my life I have not been able as often as I should have been. I was actually just looking at Timehop (an app where you can see what you tweeted, facebooked, instagrammed years ago on this day) and seeing some of the thing I said and people I hung out with and was reminded of how I filled my time a year ago today or more. I was also reading my old blog that I kept in high school. And yeesh.
When I say I like myself, I'm not talking what you think. This isn't about how skinny or fluffy I am or what shoes I wore today (really great camel colored sandals I got from TJ Maxx for $14!), or what grades I have or how much notoriety I'm getting for whatever I am doing. Because if we are being honest, I am heavier than I want to be, I can't afford to buy cute shoes all the time, I had my worst academic year of my life, and I am not doing much worth mentioning right now, but I still like myself.
The core of it has been eliminating negativity. You are all rolling your eyes at this point and wondering where your sassy Abby went. The Abby who avoided cliches and said it like it is. Bare with me, though. I am still here. Hear me out.
I was having a discussion with a friend (I cannot remember who but I think it might have been my mom, she's full of great advice like this), and we were talking about whatever boy or friend issues I was facing. I typically do not face a lot of these so I was looking for any advice I could get. This friend said something SO IMPORTANT. She/He/They said (something to the effect of):
~~~~~"it's simple. Do you make them a better person? Do they make you a better person? Do you make them happier overall? Do they make you happier overall? If not, it does not matter." ~~~~~
This is so incredibly important for any relationships you form. I am not talking about meeting someone and being "friends" with them. That is called being a good person. You should love everyone and be open to everyone as a classmate, friendly face, favorite bartender, roommate, roommate's boyfriend, store clerk. I am talking about people you decide to spend all your time with. I am talking your partner, boyfriend, girlfriend, best friends. You do know that they say you are a direct reflection of the 3 people you spend the most time with.
Reasons to be friends or form a relationship with someone:
-They make you happy
-You make them happy
-You're better with them than without them
-They're better with you than without you
Not reasons to be friends or form a relationship with someone:
-Time; you've been friends or dating for so long so...
-You're their only friend/they won't find anyone else to date if you leave (Note: this does not mean kick them to the curb and make them have 0 friends. Come on. Be a good person.)
-They're really hot
-The sex is really good
-Everyone says you'd be so cute together
-You NEED them
This is a hard concept for me because I want to be best friends and love everyone. I'm like here come under my wing and mama bird will make you mac and cheese an love you forever hey lets take a gram you pick the filter. But because of this quality, I also get very emotionally invested in people and when you become best friends with or date people because of the reasons on the second list, you're setting yourself up for failure. And heartbreak.
Okay Negativity. So something I've learned about myself is that I get really emotionally invested in people I am around. When the people I am around are negative, I cannot handle it. I do not understand constant negativity at all and when I am around it, I find myself thinking negatively and it is like this mind F thing where I hate myself and shut down. You feel me?
Examples of negativity I cannot handle:
-Posting articles on FB titled "Why Our Generation Doesn't Know How to Love"
-spinning someone else's positive news to be negative and about you. ie: "guys, I'm finally so happy. ______ is so different. He makes me laugh and sends me encouraging texts when I'm about to take a test and doesn't get annoyed with me and I'm just so happy!" "Well I'm glad SOMEONE is happy and in a relationship. Meanwhile, I am forever alone!"
-refusing to go with the flow of a common group consensus (read my Spring Break blog post, OY).
-Hating on every person on the planet
-tweeting on Mother's or Father's Day angry things about how your feed is clogged with posts that the parents probably won't even see. (EMBRACE THAT YOU HAVE FRIENDS WITH GREAT MOMS)
-General Eeyore behavior
I'm not dealing with it! If you are so negative all the time, it is so exhausting for me and everyone and I cannot be around it! I won't. You aren't enriching to my life and if you love negativity so much, I am probably not enriching to yours.
Something I have come to learn and love and embrace as one of my truths is LIVE AND LET LIVE. In case no one has ever told you, you are not the world's judge! It is not your role to tell people what to do and what not to do, who to be and who not to be. Stop complaining about everything. Stop dragging your feet and finding something wrong with everything. Your friends want to go to dinner and are choosing the place that isn't your number one choice, know when to just go and not fight it. Your sorority announces the venue for formal and it's at the zoo but you suggested Belterra casino so you immediately turn to your friend and say "what the heck the zoo? It's going to smell that's so stupid." NO. Stop that!
I'm not talking about real issues. If you find an article about...I don't know, say LGBTQ rights. Post it, friend! Slay them! That isn't what I'm talking about. Your friend wants to eat at BDubs and you're a vegetarian so you say you don't want to go there! Tell her! We all know there isn't anything good besides chicken there! See the difference between negativity and standing up for your beliefs. The same way being easy going isn't the same as being a wet noodle. Being positive isn't the same thing as having no beliefs. They're different.
Try it. Next time you're tempted to post an article bashing cat people on Facebook, or to tweet "stop making Instagrams about your dog's birthday omg", or to pout about which campus Starbucks at which your friend wants to meet, try to not. It feels great!
So you're wondering, Abby, did you just dump all of your negative friends? No. No I did not. But I do fill my time with people from that first list and less from that second list. If I do hang out with negative people, I now how to handle it. How to put up a force field to block it out. Kind of like Bella Swan in the last Breaking Dawn book. She puts up a force field and blocks herself and her friends from the bad stuff. TERRIBLE MOVIE. TERRIBLE BOOK. TERRIBLE STORY. TERRIBLE METAPHOR. But you get what I am saying. I'm not even close to perfect and I definitely slip up from time to time, but I really try to prioritize it. Here is the thing. It takes what...7 days to make a habit and 21 days to break it? Try eliminating negativity---from yourself and from others---for 7 or 21 days. It's huge, y'all.
This is how you are enriching your life.
This is how you become a happier person.
Mmhm. Okay. Blessed. Happy Summer!
I'm quite obviously talking about Tinder. What did we do to deserve this?!?!
So I downloaded Tinder purely for research purposes for the blog and I'm officially angry at all of you for putting me through this.
Here is my brief experience with Tinder: I've probably downloaded it 10 times. I've never kept it for more than 15 minutes, however. Why? Because it is Lucifer incarnate. And disgusting. And stupid. And scary. I talked to one suitor on there for more than 10 minutes and I *hates self* exchanged numbers with him and we texted a while. (Getting candid with the blog readers.) He was 28. (sorry mom!!!) I eventually just stopped texting him back. He was nice enough, was allegedly 6'4 and talked about Mac and Cheese a lot. (<-- what I look for in a man). But he liked Star Wars and quoted the Office too much so I tapped out. I don't even know his last name. *sigh* Sorry Andrew.
Also, I want to note that I know a few people in long term romances where they either found or were someone's tinderella. That's so great and I am not ragging on you. You found a needle in a hay stack and you are fun and great and deserve happiness love you.
I decided to redownload Tinder while I was working on Calculus in the library at 11:00pm on a Wednesday. Mostly so that when I lost motivation to try on my homework, I could take a few minutes to do a little swiping and see the reason I study-------> because I'm going to have to support myself the rest of my life as I die ALONE. I started taking notes on my findings like a true Sociologist. (She says semester 2 into the major). Here is what I've found.
This is my grand list of what gets you a left, right, or a "I think he is trying too hard".
A little background: I set my discovery preferences to a distance of 20 miles (from Langsam Library) and Men ages 21-26.
(If you aren't aware: Swipe left means you aren't interested, Right means you are.)
Cheap move, dude
Okay. Here is the gist.
No matter what your intentions are on Tinder, there are boundaries.
My overall conclusion after this study is this:
Stay away from Tinder. I know you are having trouble meeting suitors and you are wondering what is wrong with you. You look in the mirror and ask if you look like a goblin, you worry that you are secretly a psycho bitch, you are shy in person and you are actually hideous but photogenic.....I get it. (These are actual answers given to me when I asked my friends why they Tinder...Tind... who knows.) But let me tell you something. You aren't doing anything wrong, gf/bf! If you want to Tinder your evenings away because it makes you feel good about yourself when you get a match and they message you those awful pickup lines, do it! If you go to the bars in your Thursday-Saturday best and flaunt it like your life depends on it to meet suitors, Slay the game mama! If you are like Imma do me and if something is meant to happen it will, yes girl go off!!! If you are like OMG I am an emotional (and physical if you're being honest) wreck and you're like it's selfish to bring a suitor into this mess, yes! Do you GF!! If you are all of these in one day, YES!!! SLAY!
You are intelligent, interesting, funny, entertaining, beautiful and a QUEEN/KING/NON-GENDER CONFORMING WORD TO MEAN THE SAME IDEA! Keep slaying the game homie. You're a hot piece of meat in the least derogatory, most complimentary way!!!
But just don't Tinder with plans to meet bae. Please.
Okay. Well. That's it.
I wanna mouth kiss all of ya!
I spent Spring Break volunteering at the Carolina Tiger Rescue in Pittsboro, North Carolina. The 23 participants signed up because we are all softy-animal lovers and the trip had a very vague description. We ended up not cuddling with baby tigers while wearing safari print maxi dresses as cute animal loving men took candid pictures, providing us with 100+ like Instagrams for months. So this week was interesting. You can see pictures below and on my Facebook, but here is what I learned.
1. It is not state law to let drivers know when there are not any gas stations for over 30 miles.
So listen. I am with ya, kid. I always wonder what kind of idiotic person it takes to run out of gas. But this really was not my fault. If you've ever travelled to the Carolinas, you know that treacherous, obnoxious, winding stretch of road through the mountains in West Virginia. There is a toll right before it and after I paid my $2 to who or whatever that money goes to, my gas light came on. (By "my gas light", I mean the gas light on the Ford Expedition rental car I drove for over 30 hours in the past 7 days.) The gas light indicated 25 miles until empty. No problem, I'll just stop at the next exit. NOPE. 25 miles later, the digital gas-left-indicator-thing was at 0 and I was still going 80 on the highway. Oh. And peeing my pants. So I drive 8 more miles. EIGHT MILES. With actually no gas. Finally there is a sign for a Sunoco gas station. I pulled off the exit and I kid you not....I put the car in neutral and rolled down the hill to the station. I made it to a spot at a pump, turned off the car and said a quick prayer to God, Allah, Muhammad, Jesus, Mary, Buddha, and Meryl Streep. I ran into the station and IT WAS CLOSED. Like closed for good. Shut down. I was so sure the car wouldn't even turn back on, I was in bufu West Virginia with a car full of people I did not know and I had no data left to send a snapchat of my desperation! Long story shorter, I had to drive 5 more miles to the next gas station and we made it. But I barely escaped without wetting myself.
2. Do not eat Cracker Barrel chicken and dumplins on a road trip.
You will choke back vomit for approximately two hours. And it is not easy to make friends with your new road trip buddies when you are muttering through your teeth "DONT. SPEAK." and "DONT. LOOK. AT. ME."
3. I am a peanut butter brand snob
Give me Jif or give me death.
4. Just because it is March and only 65 degrees, doesn't mean you do not need sunscreen.
Says the girl who got h2t sunburns after laying on the beach for not even an entire afternoon. I was also wearing shorts and a tank top so I look like I am perpetually wearing white booty shorts and a "wife-beater" tank. (P.S. Who made up the name "wife-beater"....what an awful name.) I am currently molting like a snake. Sexy.
5. I can, in fact, down an entire pound of shrimp.
After the beach, I ate an entire pound of peel and eat shrimp. An entire pound. My 22 new friends were horrified. Blessed.
6. I'm really ready to be a soccer mom, apparently.
I drove this giant mom car around all week and lugged around 7 kiddos. (19-21 year old kiddos) And I made everyone put their muddy boots in garbage bags, stop for bug spray and sunscreen, and hydrate. I scared myself.
7. I have a chronic disease. It's called overdressitiditis.
Okay. I'm just trying to say that I am a chronic over dresser. I've always known this and it is hard to not be aware of it when your best friend is Lauren McGarr. (Lauren who owns more sweatpants than the entire UC Men's Football frontline combined.) For this trip, I brought "work clothes" and "fun clothes". I did not do a good job at packing either and I did not even notice until I arrived and other girls started throwing around phrases like "nice t-shirts" and "nice sweatpants". What are those things?!? T shirts are never nice!!!! STOP THE MADNESS. I also never wore any of the non t-shirts that I brought.....the non-t-shirts made up 90% of my suitcase. It isn't my fault though...I told you that I expected to get trendy, fabulous grams all week. Instead, I got instagrams in my fake times and mint rain jacket.
8. Always go with the fake timbs.
So I did a similar trip last Spring Break and bought these fabulous fake timberland looking steel toe work boots for like $19.99 at Walmart. On day one of this trip, I saw that all of the other girls were wearing old tennis shoes and A. I did not want to over commit and B. I had no idea what the day had in store. RAH-GRETS. It was muddy and wet and yucky and I ruined my shoes. Tuesday-Friday I wore the fake timbs and kept it fly and fresh.
9. Aloe lotion?!?! SORCERY.
Growing up as a Listerman, I've become an expert on all things sunburn care. I've had my fair share of sun poisoning, peeling and all other side effects of being pale and loving the sun. Growing up, we always used aloe gel. Effective, sticky, pungent, green. This week, I discovered aloe lotion and I've been changed. I want to bathe in it daily. Amen.
10. Water hydrates you faster when it is warm.
A fun fact I learned this week. I was bummed that my water was warm because I had to set my bottle in the sun, but I learned that it apparently was hydrating my body faster. Your body is able to hydrate quicker because the body does not need to work the warm it up first.
11. There is a window to learn peoples names and when it closes, you fifty shades of fudged.
Okay it is not my fault. 23 people is a lot and when you are never all together, it is hard to learn names. We got to like day three and there were a few people who had names that I could not even guess. You cannot ask after day three!! All you can do is avoid any situations where you would have to say their name. Which isn't possible. Then you look awkward. Sorry.
12. I find kinship with cons.
So we volunteered at this place and our supervisors were also volunteers but more experienced. You wanna know why? They were paroled cons serving their community service requirements. I loved them so much. I would not have survived the week without them and their antics. I do not know why I loved them so....maybe it is because I am scared to jaywalk.
13. Tigers are the greatest flirts.
We had to actually be warned that the tigers would look cute, rub their faces against the fence, bat their eyes and give us the look to tempt us to pet them. They apparently do it to draw you in and then they kill you or something, I don't know. Let me tell ya, resisting the cute flirty tigers was the hardest thing I have ever done. I wanted to touch their little noses and twitchy ears.
14. MOST IMPORTANTLY, I learned that there are two types of people in the world.
There are those who disagree and drag their feet through the mud and go kicking and screaming and there are those who just go with the flow because that is what you do when you are part of a group. I cannot handle those who do the latter. You do not need to find something wrong with everything, everyone and every situation. It is a sad way to live. No, it is a thick way to live. I say thick because that is how it felt to be around people like that. It feels heavy and thick. Like walking through marshmallow fluff. But not sweet and delicious. Just sticky and annoying and heavy.
15. It is crazy how quickly you can love people.
It actually terrifies me to the core how quickly we, as humans, (me) can love. I am not talking romantic love. I don't know NUTTIN bout that. I'm talking the love I feel for the 22 people I went on this trip with. I'm talking the love I feel for my Orientation family. I'm talking the love I feel for my best friends. It is scary how fast it happens. Is this normal? I've also learned that I love crazy people. Like batshit-do-Theresa-Caputo-Inpressions-for-6-minutes-straight crazy people. That's it. That's my friendship type. *pretends it isn't also her type-type*
Peace and love.
Happy end of Spring Break! Finish strong, eat a lot of mac and cheese, if and doubt, treat yoself and stay beautiful.