Tag Archives: sentimental

Saturday Mornings

I’ve never been a morning person, not once in my life. I was always sleeping in and groaning and asking for five more minutes. I hated the energy of the morning and I hated the whole process of getting up and ready and positivity. I wrote about the ridiculousness of waking up with fervor.

But, I’ve got a secret. Saturday mornings are now my new favorites, and the earlier the better.

saturday

My internal clock is all sort of messed up from my work schedule, and it’s not novelty, but it still hurts. There are people all over the world who operate on strange schedules and don’t complain, but I’ve been sensitive lately, and more than I want to admit to. I’m so grateful to have this new job, but no matter what the seasons bring, rolling out of bed at 3 AM always means it is dark outside, and my body just about gives up trying to stay up past 9 PM these days. So I’m adjusting slowly, but there’s something still so off about it, no matter how many alarms I set or articles I read on REM cycles and adjustment techniques, it just seems so strange.

But Saturday mornings are my own, and selfishly so. No matter how far the week seems to have stretched me or how many unanswered text messages and emails I have ignored or not seen, those hours are perfect. I can’t sleep in like I used to, but even 8 AM feels like heaven. The sun spills in and it feels like a little bit of normalcy. I don’t have to be anywhere or anyone’s but my own and I can drown in leisurely reading or coffee sipped slowly instead of chugging it down in my car at a stoplight. I can be slow and old lady-ish and take my time. My anxiety of needing to see people and be the center of attention vanishes in alone time that is truly earned and a morning that doesn’t need to move fast. I’m forever an extrovert, and I firmly believe that a loud fun night with people can heal the soul, but the slowness and stillness is becoming as addictive in its own way.

Saturday morning when the sun just starts to creep in my windows is like a magic hour, and even though that sounds cheesy, I’ll take all the pixie dust I can find to believe in right now.

I can’t be your Friday night right now, but I can be your Saturday morning.  And in all the moments of doubt and nervousness that I still have about my life and where it will go, I can relax in those moments alone. All the feelings of missing best friends in other states who are just trying to figure this out too and a boy who moved across the country to chase a dream are soothed with some quiet time.

Yes, there is something to be said for fast-paced and keeping up with the hustle, but I urge you that sometimes there is something almost romantic about taking your time. It’s like taking yourself on a date and forgetting curfew while it’s still light outside.

I’m not trying to start a revolution (not yet, at least) but if I could offer one piece of advice to you, internet: if you can, wake up early on Saturdays, but wake up slow. Put on something comfy, sip on something delicious, talk to God or talk to your dog or talk to yourself, but just rest. Turn off your phone, close your computer and stop getting hung up on connecting. Be ridiculously good and gentle to yourself in those quiet hours, and I promise it’ll pay off.

And if all else fails, I made you a playlist to help.

Because if I can’t tell you to enjoy it, men and women with acoustic guitars and smooth voices should do the trick.

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A Bittersweet Follow-Through

You can’t brace yourself for heartache.

You just can’t. You can’t will yourself to feel sad when something hasn’t happened yet. No matter how many Ryan Adams, Aretha Franklin, Damien Rice, and Feist records you spin, you can’t transport yourself to a lyrical place that doesn’t quite exist. You can get close, if you really try. You can almost pull the covers over your eyes and shut out all the light and pretend you’re overwhelmed, but it’s not worth it, because that little bit of light will peek in, and you’ll remember that there’s no reason to be upset yet. There’s no reason to worry and shut down in anticipation. There’s no reason to jump to conclusions, because, especially when you’re a type-A sentimental sap, the feelings will come.

One of the greatest people I’ve ever met is moving, and this should be nothing new to me. My dumbed-down advice to anyone in your twenties is: be prepared to move, in every way. You’ll leave college, you’ll move away from old trends and to new ones, you’ll watch friends pack up and go, you’ll say goodbye to your parents, goodbye to your family pets, and goodbye to towns you made your own. But you’ll also leave temporary jobs that didn’t fit, you’ll run from bad relationships as fast as you can because your baggage is light, you’ll float around with less responsibility, and you’ll find joy in moving as well, as you move closer towards becoming the person you want to be. It’s a lot to process, never feeling like you have roots, but there’s an exhilarating freedom at the same time.

Bittersweet- isn’t that always it? There’s a fear in watching your taillights drive away and not knowing when I’ll see them again, but there’s such a joy in knowing that you’re going after something you’ve worked almost 25 years for and that you truly care about. I want to be sad, but that’s too selfish for this, because you’re leaving on the best terms.

You told me almost a year ago that you were watching Arrested Development and I invited myself over. You told me 2 weeks later that you were planning to move away to Seattle to chase a dream, and I told you okay. You grew a mustache, I applied to a million jobs. You took all your past scars and turned them into well-crafted music, and my cynicism of relationships melted away. They say the truth will set you free but first it will piss you off, and Lord knows you learned me well enough to make me a better woman, even if sometimes it took bringing up the worst to get there. Now a few hundred cups of coffee (yours: always black, mine: dirty blonde), tambourine solos, late night walks, glasses of good whiskey, rambling phone calls, concerts (yours: sad/longing, mine: loud/obnoxious), celebrations, dances in the kitchen, cheese plates, midnight kisses, endless talks about the best recording gear and/or speakers, bad jokes, new friends, and nights of enduring my Beyoncé singalongs later – you’re following through, and I couldn’t be prouder.

So I won’t rush it. I won’t fall apart nor act overly tough- I’ll just let it be.

I couldn’t brace myself for you arriving, and I can’t brace myself for you leaving, but for now I can at least save the bitter and relish in the sweet.

Because unlike so many people who promise and never deliver, you actually did it, and what a thing it is.

Frank Sinatra Is Dangerous

I remember thumbing through old soul and crooner records in college while talking to one of my best friends about each new one we found and how nobody seemed to appreciate sentimental music anymore. We found Dean Martin and Ella Fitzgerald, and our favorite, Nat King Cole, and brought them home. A few hours and thousand discussions later, I wanted to flip the records and hear them again, but he said, simply, “I can’t listen to this kind of music that long or I start believing in it.”

Is it dangerous to believe?

The music they are playing in this coffee shop right now is dangerous. You know what I mean when I say dangerous, right? I mean the kind that makes you start to fall for it, the kind that makes you nostalgic for an era that you never even lived in, the kind that makes you close your eyes to soak it up, and the kind takes a string section and pins them right in your chest, until you’re a mess of harmonies and emotions and you think you might possibly be close to love, even if it’s with the person next to you on the bus or the drink in your hand.

I think as modern music fans, we’re all familiar with good metaphor now. Our popular music is so played out and sexualized that hardly a lyric hits home anymore or seems to shock. Very little is genuine or just openly sappy. It’s simply no longer cool to be in love. There’s still love songs being written, but they’re hardly as on-the-nose and swoon-worthy as Frank Sinatra was. There’s women coo-ing to men, but very few have the raw emotion of Etta James. You can hear feats of affection, but who has come close to “like a song of love that clings to me, how the thought of you does things to me, never before has someone been more unforgettable” in so long?

And so I turn to old music. I turn to music that sounds best in smoky jazz clubs or on a dark New York street, as words whispered between a couple walking under a streetlamp, and I start to let the lyrics ring true. This dangerous belief that love can knock me off my feet runs true in my veins. The notion that I could be so wrapped up that I end up singin’ in the rain or dancing all night without a care is true, and it’s dangerous.

But I keep believing, dangerous or not. Better or worse, I’m old-fashioned. I’m a romantic. I’m hopeful and I’m confident that there’s such a thing as an attraction that gives you fever, misty goodbyes and that just maybe, you’re nobody til somebody loves you. I’m to the point of dramatic that maybe there’s stormy weather when my man and I ain’t together, and the very thought of you makes me forget to do those little ordinary things that everyone ought to do. I’m hook, line, and sinker for this music, but I hardly seem to be rushing toward a cure.

And so what more could I leave you with than potentially the most potent one of all? “La Vie En Rose” literally translates into “life in pink” or the idea of living life wearing rose-colored glasses and only seeing the beautiful warm things of this world, and it sinks in. My best friend Carolyn gave me this song on a mix CD in middle school and it changed my life. I warn you to NOT listen to this if you’re not looking to be sentimental or not wanting to get that butterfly feeling in your stomach that makes you happy to be alive and capable of love, whether you’re in a relationship or not, because once you’re open to it, once you’re seeing the bright and sweet parts of your life and believe you can share them, well, you’ll never go back. You’ll approach situations with passion and fervor and feelings and most of all, be open to love and believe that yes, it does exist.

And that just may be the most powerfully dangerous lovely thing of all.

Things Girlfriends Do

I was never given the manual on this.

You know, “The Girlfriend Manual”.

I was never told how many days I wait before I call you ‘official’, before I move you to my phone’s “favorites”, before I see something at a store and mentally bookmark it as a gift I want to buy for you later.

I was never told if I’m supposed to draw your name with hearts on my notebook, steal your jacket to wear, if I’m supposed to change my Facebook profile status, or put “#blessed” as the caption of every photo of us.

I don’t know the appropriate responses or have the scrapbooking material for “The Story Of Us” and I don’t know where to get them.

And then, of course, there’s the rules.

If I make you dinner, I’m revoking all my feminist powers. If I lean over to kiss you at a stoplight while it’s red, I’m too touchy-feely. If I agree with you, I have no opinion of my own, but if I disagree too much, I’m mean and bitchy. If I call you daily or, heaven forbid, text you two times in a row before you respond to the first one, I’m clingy. If I make you a mix cd, I’m cheesy. If I make you pay, I’m old fashioned. If I ask to split the check, I’m not grateful and am insulting your job and manhood. If I offer to pay, I’m emasculating you. If I buy you clothing, I’m too mothering. If I introduce you to my parents, I’m moving too fast. If I don’t introduce you to my parents, I’m not interested at all. If I like what you like or try to understand your interests, I’m trying too hard. If I don’t like what you like, then we have nothing in common and are doomed to fail. If I ask who that girl was, I’m jealous. If I don’t ask who that girl was, then later on I’ll be told I “should have seen the signs”. If I talk to other men that aren’t you, I’m a flirt. If I don’t like your friends, I’m a horrible person, but, if I try too hard to “bro” out, then it’s fake. If I get excited and call you my boyfriend and enjoy spending time with you and actually maintain a somewhat traditional stable relationship, then I’m a sucker and just “one of THOSE girls”, but if I’m not interested in a relationship, then there’s something wrong with me.

So it’s a bigger society issue, I guess.  This really is a bigger, more in-depth blog post that I should take more seriously. I should really investigate culture’s laws for “women in relationships” or the way pop culture tells you to be a “girlfriend” or the constant criticism of young women that makes growing up or raising a daughter in this twisted world seem terrifying, but really, I just wanted to say that I’m glad I never got the manual.

Because, from what I can tell, you haven’t read it either, and that puts me at ease.

So, you do you, and I’ll do me, and we’ll figure out ‘us’.

And I ‘ll try to stop writing about it so often, because, that’s probably something girlfriends do.

Dear 2012 (At The End)

Dear 2012,

3 states and 6 cities later, and I still don’t think I believe it, but here we are in Nashville. I can honestly say that I never would have even predicted this, sitting in San Marcos, Texas on a couch watching Coldplay and confetti on PBS (in fact- the first episode of Austin City Limits I ever worked!) this time last year.

But, oh boy, it’s been a YEAR!

You’ve definitely been the hardest year of my life, and although there have been times I have hated you, I wouldn’t trade your worst moments for right now.

You’ve been the year that I mourned graduating college and the friendships I made there that are so hard to keep track of now, but I fight for daily – whether through phone calls or text messages or just gchats that say nothing but “I MISS YOU” for days. You’ve been the year of different hair colors, the year of caffeine headaches and flight delays, the year of dance parties and hugging a lot of people, and hugging even more dogs. You’ve been the year of crying from laughing so hard, the year of taking the stigma out of 22 years of panic attacks, the year of learning new faces and new roads in new cities. You’ve been the year of growing up even more than I wanted you to be, the year of comparing everything to “Girls”, the year of sriracha-on-everything, the year of learning to trust my instincts, the year of meeting a boy with a fantastic mustache who bought me a Shiner (and the rest is history) and the year of discovering that being happy and overly-excited about life is not a crime!

You’ve been the year of relationships – from boys to family to friends to coworkers to strangers to Twitter to Jesus to neighbors to musicians to pen pals – and you’ve turned everything I knew about communication and love in those relationships upside down, in the best possible way. You’ve been the year of unlearning old habits of thinking ‘you’re just not good enough’ and the year of letting myself be loved for me, quirks and passions and all.

Together, 2012, we made it through unemployment that felt like it might steal all my joy and sanity for 6 months followed by 2 months in the desert only to pick up and move randomly and land my first big girl job in a week (!!!!!!!), and all the stresses and excitements of those decisions.

I probably didn’t sleep enough, I probably wore my vocal chords out singing to Adele’s “21” frequently and lord knows I scuffed up some shoes dancing to Motown and Jack White. I probably should have called home more, I probably should have been more organized, I probably should have answered more emails in a timely manner.

But hey, I fixed that leak in my car by myself! I handled those awkward hard conversations! I wrote those songs and I shared them! I showed up on time to those interviews, I ate those vegetables, I streeeeeetched that budget even when it was hard, and I feel all the better from it.

2012, I’ll miss you and I’ll look back at you wistfully, probably, and someday romance this terribly confusing time of my 20s, but for now, you should know – it’s nothing personal against you – that I am really wholeheartedly looking forward to what 2013 can dish out and bring me.

However, if you talk  to 2013, could you please tell him/her I would like it if Damien Rice and Justin Timberlake both finally put out new albums? And if all the puppies without homes could just make their way to my doorstep? And if maybe I could wake up one day and be able to walk in heels flawlessly, play guitar like Jimmy Page and sing like Sharon Jones?

Appreciate it. At the very least, can you tell 2013 to bring more opportunities to bring my taxidermy stuffed bobcat around? Just doesn’t get enough love.

Photo on 2012-12-21 at 17.09
Ferocious Hugs and Champagne-at-Midnight Kisses,

Lion

Feelings. I Have Them.

Being tender and open is beautiful. As a woman, I feel continually shhh’ed. Too sensitive. Too mushy. Too wishy washy. Blah blah. Don’t let someone steal your tenderness. Don’t allow the coldness and fear of others to tarnish your perfectly vulnerable beating heart. Nothing is more powerful than allowing yourself to truly be affected by things. Whether it’s a song, a stranger, a mountain, a rain drop, a tea kettle, an article, a sentence, a footstep, feel it all – look around you. All of this is for you. Take it and have gratitude. Give it and feel love.

                             — Zooey Deschanel

I know everyone has their opinions on Zooey Deschanel (I dedicated a whole post to it) and just women in the entertainment industry in general, and I wanted to write a big post today completely unrelated to any of this, but I read this quote and I felt like it was everything I have wanted to say and believe and share for most of my sensitive little life.

I can breathe in this quote for a while, because, like Zooey and also like my soul sister in Mean Girls who doesn’t even go here, I just have a lot of feelings.

We can blame it on the cold weather making me more sensitive, or we can all make another joke about women having crazy hormones that make them feel too much, or my sentimental heart, but sometimes I just want to drop all my cool cards and tell everyone that I feel things! And I can’t stop feeling them! And maybe I feel them too much! And maybe I love everything too hard and too much! And maybe I am very affected by good songs, baby animals, the way christmas lights look through the car window when you’re driving at night, a chapter from book whose words hit you square in the chest, and a sweet text message that I didn’t know how much I needed! And maybe I should stop feeling so much and loving so much and so often! And stop sharing my feelings with people I barely know, like at the grocery store when the deli lady simply asked you how your day is going and you let her know you’re afraid of adulthood!

Or maybe not.

Maybe I just need a nap. Or a stack of pancakes. Or to figure out how to not let myself get so wrapped up in little stresses.

Or maybe I should just feel things, no matter how messy or out of place or obnoxious they might be. Maybe I should just love things and forget about all the rest.

Or maybe I should just share a cup of coffee with Zooey, because lord knows I’m ‘quirky’ enough.

That One Red Sweatshirt

I really like being warm.

I am consistently cold. I don’t know if it is that I just am part amphibian and have cold blood, or if I am like Superman and need to charge in the sun to gain my power, but I’m consistently freezing. I am a little bundle of shivers most days. Any weather under 85 degrees is a struggle for me.

I frequently live in scarves and leggings and furry vests, not only for style, but for layers. I love wearing boots and obnoxious ponchos and I steal the covers like nobody’s business. My parents gave me a Snuggie for Christmas and I use it 100% seriously with no irony. I bundle in blankets and sip hot coffee and tea like it’s going out of style.

So, I try a lot of methods to get warmer, but most notably, now that I’ve moved to Nashville, I wear your old sweatshirt that I borrowed from you one time and never gave back.

Remember that red hooded number?

It’s almost a prize to me and by now, I don’t know if you even remember it. You wore it in high school, its red “Abercrombie” logo proudly displayed (LOL, Abercrombie & Fitch) but the most significant thing to me is that you primarily wore it before we ever met.

Is it too cheesy of me to think about the days you spent in it before I stole it? I just know that the last time you wore it consistently you were young and you were probably writing screenplays and listening to Interpol and maybe feeling like you didn’t quite fit in. I know this because I was feeling the same exact way, only I was on the other side of the city, writing blog posts and listening to Ben Kweller, and wearing a sweatshirt with some stupid graphic that you’d probably make fun of now.

Somehow this sweatshirt accompanied you to college, where we met and where most of your wardrobe either spent a lot of time with me or near me or living below me. (I mean, your plaid shirts and I have practically had whole relationships, but that’s another story altogether.) But, I’m sure I was cold one night, as usual, and you gave it to me so I’d stop complaining or maybe I took it because I felt entitled as your best friend and considered your things basically mine. Either way, I have it, I brought it to Tennessee, and I wear it.

I wear it because it’s roomy and when I’m feeling too lazy to carry a purse, I can put everything I need in the front pocket. I wear it because it makes me think of college and because it’s easy to find in my closet. I wear it because it reminds me of you, and right now I miss you so much that it physically hurts most days.

But I think the main reason I wear it is because I’m sentimental and in some stupid way, wearing it makes me feel like you’re gonna come walk through my door and demand it back, even though I know you’re in Texas.

(And besides, even if you did demand it back, you’d be bluffing, because we both know you’re all about cardigans and real coats now.)

So thanks for keeping me warm, even thousands of miles away. I owe you some mittens or something.