Not good enough. Writing 101, Day 17

I can’t. I’m not good enough. They won’t like me, they’ll think I’m weird. I have to act differently, more grown up. I can’t be my full self or they will think I’m weird.

When it comes to self doubt, self care, and what I deserve it all ties together in a ball of anxiety and fear. Thoughts tumble more than one specific fear or anxiety. The way I see and treat myself affects how I feel and interact with others. I’ve had times where I’m surprised people want to be my friend, or think I’m cool. I went on a date with an accountant who was older than anyone I’ve ever dated before and I felt like I had to act proper and be on my best behavior. I thought he would be uninterested if I was how I really am, and our age difference would be obvious. He wears suit jackets, button ups and has perfect posture, which contrasts with my nose ring, other piercings and tattoos. I had never seen someone carry themselves so well or have perfect posture like he did.

On one of our dates I told him about my family and living in NYC. He laughed at my stories of me and my family getting tattoos and piercings, and being in the city. I found out he’s from a very religious family, doesn’t have anything marking his body. And his family doesn’t communicate. We were complete opposites. That day I felt a sense of dread/doom/something knowing that we would not work. I come from a family who does not keep secrets from each other, and we’re very New York. I was not upset when he broke it off with me a few days later. It saved me from having to do it.

I realized that he wouldn’t work for me. There isn’t a point in building a relationship with someone when you feel like you can’t be yourself and aren’t totally comfortable. They’ll start liking that person then you have to keep that act up or they’re confused when you start being yourself. Also, as a friend told me he learned to go into a date thinking if he would like them, if they would be good for him instead of worrying if they like him. While this guy was older and proper he didn’t stir my blood or make me happy. I wasn’t thrilled when I went on dates with him though I did enjoy his company. As a possible friend…? Cept that wasn’t possible. I had gone on dates with him even though I wasn’t thrilled or excited to go. He along with a friend of mine helped me realize that if I’m not excited for a date, I shouldn’t go. That my time is precious and should be spent with people who I care about.

There are times I doubt myself and feel like I’m not good enough. I can know in the back of my mind that I’m great and better than I think I am but seeing and knowing are different. I can take a deep breath and carry myself well, acting as confident as I feel but some days I wonder how I can put on this act.

Dove beauty campaign. I don't own this image

Dove beauty campaign. I don’t own this image

About a year ago Dove hired a forensic artist to sketch seven women. He did a sketch of how they described themselves, and one of how a stranger described them. The women then see the pair of drawings and how others see them. This made me reflect on how I think and am too judgmental of myself. People I love and who care about me are surprised when I voice my insecurities and doubts. I’ve been told that people think I’m sweet, funny, beautiful, intelligent.. and people will see it, want to be my friend or take me on dates. Etc. I’m in the process of shifting my self image and learning how to see what they see. Because I know -like this Dove experiment- that they’re not the same.

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Today’s assignment– We all have anxieties, worries, and fears. What are you scared of? Address one of your worst fears.

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Lost and found. Writing 101, Day 16

It’s another day at the amusement park. I’ve been assigned to work in the lost and found, my favorite. Never know what I’m going to find here. So many people bustling about in large groups with small children. It’s easy to lose things here. Yessiree, I’ve seen quite a lot of tears over lost teddy bears and gameboys. The smiles on their little faces when they’re reunited warms my heart.

People travel far and wide to visit this amusement and water park. One day I saw a photo album filled with pictures. Diners and state signs, parties, camping trips. I love that kids these days are still using disposable cameras. Keeping the olde form of documentation alive. Luckily enough I could catch them before they left town, I found a phone number written neatly in the front.

I see the darnedest things in the lost and found. Lunchboxes, soccer balls, one shoe of a pair. I don’t know how they got home with that last one. There are so many towels and sunscreens, they seem to fade together. Occasionally some gems pop out. One time a wedding ring was found that was left by the sink. The poor dear called and called leaving frantic messages until it was found. Newley weds… They’ve got such a shine to them. I remember those days, before I had to divorce that bastard.

The amount of phones that we find is unbelievable. Those kids insist on wearing their jeans below their rump and those hot pants, not realizing that things fall out on the roller coaster rides. Change scatters the ground. On a good day my colleagues and I get to dole out the bounty.

Along with being miscellaneous items left behind these represent memories and landmarks in peoples lives. The lost and found is a place where people come and go. Treasures speak for themselves but I’ve had some people tell stories through tears of joy as they retrieve their lost wedding bands, cell phones, photo albums. Their comings and goings mark passages on these very walls. It’s always a pleasure working in the lost and found.

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Today’s assignment– Imagine you had a job in which you had to sift through forgotten or lost belongings. Describe a day in which you come upon something peculiar, or tell a story about something interesting you find in a pile.

On day 4, you wrote about losing something. On day 13, you then wrote about finding something. So, today’s twist: If you’d like to continue our serial challenge, also reflect on the theme of “lost and found” more generally in this post.

Crushes and role models. Writing 101, Day 15

Tegan and Sara. I don't own this image

Tegan and Sara. I don’t own this image

The events that come to mind for me are all music and concert related. I’m seeing Tegan and Sara this week and would be upset if it got canceled. Heartbroken if they stopped going on tours. When I first got into them I loved them because they’re gorgeous twin sisters who are lesbians. The perfect poster people for the queer community. More than that, I identify with their music and find them fascinating. I can relate to almost all of their songs and feel an ache when they sing about heartache. Pretty sure I can find a song to connect to most moments in past relationships.

“In my teen years I dated boys but I didn’t hate it. I wasn’t like, “Oh, gross.” And then I kissed a girl and was like, “One’s not right and one is definitely awesome.'” Tegan, in an interview for Dallas Voice.

My mom met them at the Pride Parade NYC the one year I didn’t go. I remember having a gut feeling that I was missing out then she sent me a picture with Sara and I could not believe it.. I saw them at Boston Calling about a month ago. Sara checked in with Tegan during their set to see how she was doing. She said how it’s weird for them the play in the day, since it’s something they usually do at night. Like when people do other things meant to happen at night.. At that point Tegan pointed out there were kids there. They’re absolutely adorable and I found it touching that they were checking on each other.

I find how they work to be really interesting. One of them will write a song and be the main vocals for that, and it switches off depending who wrote the song. I had an ex who used to quiz me on who was singing. Recently they came out with an album called Heartthrob where they changed the sound if their lyrics. What made an impression on me was how the lyrics dug into my heart even more than their other albums. About being brave and a hero, along with lyrics “I was a fool for you” and “how come you don’t want me now.” I feel a similar pain to theirs, and listened to that album on repeat because it was what I was feeling getting over a relationship.

At their concert me and a few people wove through the crowd until we were at what felt like the middle. All of us were singing and dancing, the sun was shining, and it was beautiful. Along with Tegan and Sara at Boston Calling I saw Jack Johnson perform. I’ve absolutely loved him since I was in middle school. His cds have been on many road trips with my mom and I. In the song “do you remember” he says “over ten years have gone by and you’re still mine”. When he performed he changed it to over twenty years, and talked about his family which brought tears to my eyes. It was so sweet hearing that those love songs he wrote are about the person he is still with.

It would crush people if Boston Calling or a Tegan and Sara concert were canceled. There are so many role models and singers that people have grown up listening to and traveled all over the world to see.

And now I’m all caught up. Just in time for the last week.
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Today’s assignment– You’re told that an event that’s dear to your heart — an annual fair, festival, or conference — will be cancelled forever (or taken over by an evil organization). Write about it.

Invincible. Writing 101, Day 14

Adámas. In Ancient Greek meaning unconquerable, invincible. Also is he hardest steels, unyielding, inflexible, lasting. According to wiktionary.

I hadn’t known that was a real word until I looked it up. It was from a book called City of Heavenly Fire by one of my favorite authors, Cassandra Clare. I love fantasy, and this serious The Mortal Instruments is a whole fantasy world. In it there are shadow hunters who fight demons, runes that are like magic, and portholes which can bring you through space. I’ve been reading this series since I was in high school and am always super happy when a book comes out.

It makes total sense that the word adámas is Greek. There are a few characters in the series well versed in languages and old plays. Filled with quoted to make them sound wiser than their age. In this scene the bad guy is holding a sword in one hand and a goblet stamped with adámas which made me think it was stamped with shapes, like stars. The sword has an inscription with his last name which means morning star.

Reading these books makes me think of escapism. I love reading since it distracts me from my life and pulls me into a totally different world. Cassandra Clare’s worlds are filled with beautiful imagery, of pixies, warlocks, beautiful drinks and worlds. It makes me want to be a part of them. When I read I feel like the character, and if they’re acting bad I feel like a bad guy. I can get upset when I read a book, probably because I’m too invested in the characters or get too hooked.

When I was younger I imagined a world on a level above ours that was a village I’m the trees. All of the people I loved were there, and nothing bad could happen to us. We could always add people that we care about to it. When I read her books I think of the warlocks and vampires who live forever. Sometimes I imagine being a vampire and turning everyone I love, though I know some of them wouldn’t be happy with that. It pains me to read about the warlock in love with a human in this series, and how he has outlived so many lovers. I would love if all the people I care about are safe and invincible, but I know that that isn’t possible.

Which reminds me of a poem I once wrote:

I wish I was mute,
I wish I was blind
I wish I knew your heart was forever mine
But I know I’m not mute,
Know I’m not blind
And there’s just no such thing as forever mine.

Even at a young age I was wise.
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Today’s assignment– Pick up the nearest book and flip to page 29. What’s the first word that jumps off the page? Use this word as your springboard for inspiration.

Reminiscing on love. Writing 101, Day 13

When I was packing my apartment I found a little wire person with a love note from an ex. It mentioned having a great power out, and our names on it. I had long forgotten that he had made it for me, or where I had out it. We didn’t exchange a lot of stuff, though it was one of the longest relationships I’ve had. This metal person and note took me back to a time where we were at his mom’s house when there was a power out. We were all watching tv, listening to the wind blow when the screen suddenly turned off. During the power out we had gotten junk food at a gas station and laid by the fire reading. We spent about a week win the power out and I remember emailing teachers that I was stuck and couldn’t make it to school because it was dangerous.

Of course I had just gotten a tattoo before the power went out. I remember washing it with water from a bucket and a flashlight. Hoping that my tat wouldn’t get infected. Luckily it’s healed and looks great.

Being from the city I don’t get a lot of power outs. I had a great time laying by a fire, reading and relaxing with people I love. Having each other as body heat. Finding this wire person with the note reminded me of time where my ex and I were happy. It took me back past our fights and bad times to moments we’d share with pure happiness and love for each other. Similar to finding this I have crystals from him that I keep displayed. It was really moving to find things from him and remember the sweet guy that I had loved so much my heart ached.

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Today’s assignment-On day day 4, you wrote a post about losing something. Today, write about finding something.

Seen in the stars. Writing 101, Day 12

“I saw a documentary once where two deers locked antlers and died like that.”

There are a lot of Tauruses in my life. My brother and mom are, and whenever they argue I think of the two deers. Both headstrong bulls bent on getting their way. I’m a Pisces so I try and stay out of it, imagining antlers through a fish. I’m really interested in astrology and horoscopes. I find that they’re often right when describing a person. I once heard that people decide what sign they are going to be before they’re born and which ones they’re going to be surrounded by. We choose the kinds of people we keep in our lives.

I found a chart in Cosmo once with astrology matches, saying what signs a person should be paired with. I was amused to see that one of my exes and I were not on the list for best matches, while another one was. Which males me think: is it good to date someone similar to you, or to go with opposites attract? If they’re too similar will a person get bored, or will the relationship grow because of mutual understanding?

I have great relationships with like minded people who aren’t the same as me. Different signs, and experiences but some of my friends understand and relate to me so well that it’s occasionally surprising. I also have a new friend who is the same sign as me, which has never happened before. There are times where we talk and are so similar that I feel a kind of bond in our school of fish. Different ages and events but we get each other on a level that I haven’t felt with other signs.

I envy couples that can predict each other’s movements, and have a mutual understanding that people outside of the relationship can’t get. Communicating through a look, or gesture. Being together so long they know how the other is feeling. When I’m single I dislike the happy mushy couples and when I’m with someone I think how it’s our turn to be that.

Were all stubborn in our own ways. While I find astrology and horoscopes interesting and often true the thing that matters is of a person understands you and you love each other. To treat one another with kindness and respect.

Today’s assignment– Write a post inspired by a real-world conversation.

Childhood home. Writing 101, Day 11

I grew up in a house in the city. By the I mean NYC. My mom, brother and I lived in a house in a row of historical houses. They were so old that they are landmarked, and not in their original location. In a book is a photo of one of the houses being moved. Around it is a deserted dirt landscape.

When my brother and I were little we had the Dr. Seuss counting books. We used to walk around counting the doors, windows, doorknobs… At the time -when I was 12- the main floor was brick, and cold. We had a spacious living room, dining room and a kitchen that felt like a maze. It had large, metal cabinets always filled with snacks. Out back was a large garden that my mom and I spent days planting each year.

We used to do craft projects on the table, glitter scattered the floor. My mom taught us to waltz. We’d have stuffed animal flights since the walls of the floor above weren’t sealed. There was so much space our voices echoed.

Most of my childhood memories are there. My first kiss. Getting ready for elementary school graduation. Going to senior prom. Halloween parties where neighborhood parents and kids from our schools would come. Sleep over parties. Little kid relationships and my first serious ones.

About a year ago we sold the house. It was sad to see our stuff in boxes, and rooms filled with our memories left behind. I will never forget what it felt like to live in a house in this crazy city. A pause from the fast-moving pace outside our door.
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Today’s assignment– Today, tell us about the home you lived in when you were twelve.

Comfort food. Writing 101, Day 10

The smell of garlic cooking reminds me of home. As soon as it’s sizzling it makes my stomach rumble. Something about the aroma is comforting, like warm houses and clean laundry. A go-to comfort food of mine that I learned from my mom is pasta with tomatoes and garlic. With the garlic lightly toasted and tomatoes cooked until they’re soft and have liquid.

I was so miserable at my old college that I had trouble eating. When I was motivated I would fill my arms with bags of groceries and bring them back to my mini fridge. Each floor of the dorms had a lounge and kitchen, and I liked to cook instead of having cafeteria food when I could. One night I was cooking garlic and a group of people walked downstairs and into the lounge. The smell while being far from home brought comfort to the room.

Another dish that my mom and I like is pasta with garlic, olives and broccoli. She would cook this as a first meal home or last meal before I went back to school. I remember nights that I’d stay out late coming home to a note from my mom and pasta to be heated up. I’d fill a green bowl and curl up in a big chair with it.

Cooking is really soothing. I love the process of taking separate parts and making a meal. It wasn’t until I went away from home that I discovered how often I repeat childhood comfort foods.
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Today’s assignment– Today, be inspired by a favorite childhood meal.

Lonely house. Writing 101, Day 9

Location-

A large white mansion in a row of other houses. It is a quiet, sleepy town.

House:

It’s been a while since I had occupants. Usually someone would be here by now. Gone for the winter to return when the sun warms. The sun shines brightly now.

Vegetation:

Ahhhh… At last I can stretch, with no one to stop me from growing. Plenty of posts and walls to twine around.

Lawn sculptures:

It’s getting a little tight in here. I thought they were saying hi but they’re wrapped around me now. I can’t move, they’re all the way up my legs. I wonder if anyone can see me.

House:

Old girl, you’ve seen better years. Paint chipped and flaking. Cracks in the siding. Foundation applied too thick and weathered. Groaning under the footsteps of ghosts. It’d sure be nice to be filled with cheerful voices and laughter. Wait a minute, here comes someone now…

*a car pulls into the driveway, people get out*

Woman:

Here we are again. It’s weird being back without gramps. I almost expect him to call out and ask what took us so long. Complaining that he’s hungry for dinner. Well, this place is ours now. The weeds are growing, up the porch and choking the plants. I wonder when the last time white paint was applied. Deep breath. Time to investigate what was left to us. I wonder where to start…

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Today’s assignment– For today’s assignment, write a scene at the park. Up for a twist? Write the scene from three different points of view.

Quiet observation, Writing 101 Day 8

Iron pressed against back, thighs and rear-end
Foot losing feeling
Grounded by concrete
Other bounces to a beat

Flies buzz
Ants march
Leaves and my hair sway in the breeze
Skin, and clothes warm in the sun

Sun going down
Cooler
Pale, white-gray sky
Laughter, cheers
Raised voices
Snippets of conversation
Streets bustle with people
Iron fence separates
Me from them
Exchanged glances as they pass by

Greenery surrounds me
At my feet, back, and overhead
Geraniums
A splash of hot and pale pink
Interrupt the otherwise monochrome pots

Birds chirp
Busses rumble
Keys jingle
Horns honk
Lights flash
Music intermingles
An ever-changing soundtrack
Of the city.
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Today’s assignment-Go to a public location and make a detailed report of what you see. The twist of the day? Write the post without adverbs.