Tuesday, May 17, 2011

So....I titled my post "in hopes of living bigger". But what, exactly, am I doing lately in those hopes? I've been so busy and so overwhelmed with the day to day life that the hopes of living bigger have merely turned in to hopes of surviving each day and making it by to the next.

My hopes of becoming an amazing teacher, while not over, are definitely (I feel) on hold. I have gone from planning inventive, insightful lessons to merely surviving the lessons. Yes, I still have the students' attention and my classroom is still a pretty decent place to be- but it hasn't been *amazing* lately. I haven't gone out of my way to pull students into my office and offer them additional assistance. I haven't scheduled out an amazing plan to make sure all students leave my classroom with that awesome feeling of wonder and excitement that I had planned. Lately, I just feel like i'm...surviving.

What else am I doing to be "living bigger" lately? Nothing, really. And it's not that I need to do these amazing things or travel to these amazing places to feel like i'm living a bigger life. No, it's the small things. It's making time for a monthly pedicure, making time to read those inspirational blogs that I so love at the coffee shop with the lattes topped with foam pictures of hearts and leaves, it's making time to do what ever it is that I am doing with gusto and ambition and inspiration.

So, what do I do now? What do I do now that I most certainly won't get the teaching job I've been going to school for the last 7 years for, most certainly am not with the guy that I'm going to marry that, when I met him, I waited for and only imagined us being the most perfect of couples, and most certainly feeling like I'm lacking the usual inspiration that I really feel makes me...me? Well, I guess I adapt. I change. I go back to square one.

Isn't that crazy...square one. After all the millions of things I've been through- the jobs I've had, the guys I've dated, the experiences I've had....square one. However, I'm not really sure square one is the worst place to be. Here I am, so many years later, with a clear picture of what I want out of life. No, not the perfect guy in my head, the perfect job, or the perfect picture of what my life is going to be like. But the idea of who I am and the things that I plan to get out of life. The feeling, above all, of hope. The feeling that anything is possible. I find myself, after a bad breakup, after getting fired, after a big loss of some sort, going back to that square one. This place is a beautiful place to me- a place where anything is possible. Everything is in front of you and any choice is possible. I'm not locked into anything. Everything I do, from this point on out, is my choice. I think this is something many people overlook: I choose to be where I'm at. No one chooses where they are from, where you now is an unchangable thing, but where you are going- that, my friends, is changable for anyone at anytime.

So now, I choose to go forward. I chose to have the world in front of me. And, you know what, if I choose to be here in Salem, substitute teach, waitress, be single....well, that sounds like a pretty great life to me. And it will be, because I chose it. And if it doesn't turn out to be what I want, well, I guess I'll go back to square one again =)

Friday, February 4, 2011

Why I am in love with music....

Because music is like putting feelings into art. Music gives my uncreative soul a way to express itself. Yes, perhaps it is through other artists- but that's why music is amazing. There are so many songs that take me back: to a person, to a moment, to a situation, to a friend's situation. They take me back to good memories, to moments and situations I'm happy to have overcome, and bring back mixtures of feelings that just make me feel so...alive. They also help me to see and realize my hopes and dreams. What kind of person do I want to be? What kind of love do I want to find someday? I love that I can think and feel all of this through music. It amazes me actually.

I love when I hear a song and it just...takes me back. For better or worse, it reminds me how much I can feel (which, to me, is always a positive thing). I can't listen to Jason Wade's "You Belong To Me" (my go-to travel song) without it transporting me back to the rocks in Italy, staring at the sunset for hours. I listened to B&D's "It's Getting Better All The Time" on repeat for...about a week straight when my first love (of four years) and I broke up- really my first experience with lost and/or relationshipinal (<--- that word, copyright MGM) loss. It takes me back to my dorm bed, crying and "ruined" and wasting away with greasy food, a best friend, and Tylenol PM. But, my point is- these songs seriously take me back to these places- no time travel necessary.

Anyways, I'm sure everyone hears songs and thinks, "Hey! That's me! That is my situation." Sometimes, it's awesome to realize how alike we all are and how we are all so different. What made me think of this to begin with was that I was listening to Kenny Chesney's "Somewhere With You" on youtube...I happened to scroll through the comments and saw:
what do u do if your wife
feels different then you
i just want to b with her
dont think i have the fight anymore
drove all the way from billings mt 2
wagner sd put this song on replay the whole
719 miles
tk u kenny4 a great song

I thought to myself...I've been this person! (After I thought..."this person has horrible English skills!") Anyways...I've been there. I've felt that feeling. It's crazy how all of our situations feel (key word) so unique to only us...but they probably aren't. We all feel. We all experience happiness, sadness, loss, gain- sometimes in immense amounts. At least, that is what I hope for everyone. The greatest blessing this life has given us is the capability to FEEL. For better or worse, use it wisely.

The Soundtrack that inspired this blog (and my life)...

Dave Matthews Band- Grace Is Gone
Levi Lowrey- Wherever We Break Down
Brooks and Dunn- It's Getting Better All The Time
Kenny Chesney- Somewhere With You
Joshua Radin- I'd Rather Be With You
Jerrod Niemann- What Do You Want From Me
Jason Wade- You Belong To Me
Montgomery Gentry- Gone
Jay-Z- Empire State of Mind (aka Cause We're in Nnneeewwww YYooorrrkkkk)
Taylor Swift- The Way I Loved You
Jack Johnson- Better Together
Eric Church- Love Your Love The Most

Of course this list is not near fully complete (not at all!)...and is subject to change, to growth, to subtraction...as is my life =)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Conquering My List: #82- Watch a baby being born.

So...I'm actually really excited about this- my first cross off I can officially do since my list went "public". (I put "public" in quotations because I'm sure the ten-ish people that read it hardly count as the public! haha). Anyways, here I am: #82- Watch someone give birth...

My amazing friend (and yes, boss) Alison and I were joking months ago, when she found out she was pregnant, about me watching her give birth to her child (fourth) so I could cross it off my bucket list. It slowly turned from a full out joke- to a thought- to a hmm....why not- to a plan to do it! I can't tell you the fear or excitement or nervousness that went through me as the "event" got closer. You see, it's not as if I ever actually WANTED to see a birth, I just think it's something everyone has to do to have fully lived (just like a good old fashioned heart break).

So, when I got the call that morning from her husband that the baby was on its way, I was mortified. However, I was also ecstatic and honored that Ali & her husband were gracious enough to let me in on their special moment. Slight background- I have somewhat adopted myself into the Fladwood's family. My family, very sadly, lives four hours away. Sometimes, it's nice to have that security and atmosphere that a noisy, funny, sometimes obnoxious, always eventful, REAL family holds. So, in my mind, what's the next natural step? Being there when a real Fladwood moves on into this world.

The birth- took around 36 hours at the hospital. I was there for pretty much all of it- I got to hold Ali's hand as they gave her the epidural (if that isn't birth control for me I don't know what is!), I got to eat cup-o-noodle in the nurse station while spending almost two days at the hospital, and I got to see beautiful baby Olive come into this world. I saw her take her first breaths; I heard her cry her first cry; I held her two minutes after she was born. Let me reemphasize that- I held a two minute old baby! There is an amazing feeling of...well, I'm not even sure what that feeling was: honor, excitement, amazement, world-connectedness, disbelief, etc when you see a baby being brought into this world. I didn't expect to cry or be moved in the way I was- but I most certainly did. One minute there were four family members in the room (including me and Grandpa Gary, of course)- and the next there was five. I don't know what baby Olive's life has in store for her- I hope its amazing and beautiful and I hope I'm there to be a part of it. But I do know this for a fact and forever...I was there the moment she was born. No matter what she goes on to accomplish, to not accomplish, who she ends up falling in love with, where she lives, what she says, whatever she does with this life she has been given- I was there for the beginning. To me, that's an amazing thing.

"A possibility was born the day you were born, and it will live as long as you live." - Marcus Solero