Say Yes and Figure It Out Afterwards.

Freaking out, but it’s official. I’m staying in Champaign for one more year…!

As I read over my post from October, “I’m So Anxious,” I realize I was just so angry and so shut off. I was needing to prove people wrong and show them that my decision to live my life my way was the best choice for me. Graduating early was the only thing I wanted to do because it was the only thing I had control over at the time. I have recently looked back on that period of my life and how much I have changed and grown since then and I’m honestly astonished. I never thought I could/would come this far.

I know everyone’s original question probably still remains: “What drove the decision to graduate early..?” I guess I could blame it on being “free spirited,” as my mom calls me, and my willingness to go against the social norm. I could say it has everything to do with the incredibly challenging first semester I had this year that went horribly wrong when I was so sick.  Along with that came the complications from my illness that left me with debilitating headaches, and severe anxiety and depression, so when my advisor said I could graduate early by just taking 21 credits (basically, one extra class) for my last semester I was like “ABSOLUTELY, get me out of here”…I was so ready to leave.  So ready to get out that graduating early was the only decision I would even consider at that time and I didn’t want anyone challenging me otherwise.

Maybe it was because I was the lucky one, the one with the amazing Public Relations summer internship that would turn into a full time opportunity after graduation. I was the one that was offered several other sales opportunities with really good sports teams and other companies. I was the one with the amazing support system that would be there after graduation. Everyone told me how lucky I was, so why not graduate, I mean, they wanted me and everyone told me they were amazing chances that I would be losing or passing up if I didn’t take them. I had a taste of the working world last summer and I LOVED it, I wanted to be in that environment and I thought I was ready to be every day.

I don’t really know all the reasons, all I know is that I just wanted to do it. More than anything.

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All of those reasons aside, I’m admitting it. 100%. I. Was. Wrong. I thought I was ready for the real world. I thought I knew what I wanted out of life and who would be there. I thought that if I graduated early, I would know exactly what I wanted because..well, because I was supposed to. But guess what, t-minus 1 month until graduation and I still have no idea.

Someone told me I have a “wild spirit” once; that I don’t like to be held down. Maybe this is why I don’t know what I want. I can’t decide on just one thing. Graduate. Work. Done. Ummm…no. I want to do everything. I want to live everywhere and experience everything and I know that I can’t do that quite yet. So one more year to decide couldn’t hurt, could it?

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Bottom line, I’m not ready to give up my life here. I’ve made such an astonishingly, spontaneously thrilling life in college and I’m just not ready to let it go. Staying in Champaign will let me experience college on an entirely different level. I’m getting to live with my best friends and spend another year with the people I love to be around. I get to graduate with some of them and experience our lasts together. I get to be an Alpha Phi for another year, work at the salon, blog for Panhellenic for Alpha Phi. This is what I want out of college..not to leave and have a life of regrets and what ifs. Everyone can make their own assumptions of why I’m staying now, but these are my reasons written out in black and white for everyone to see.

Also, my parents just found out that they are moving to Florida. Amazing, I know. So why would I leave here to go home to have my family leave? Or go with them with no job or any idea of what to do? None of what my plans were seem to be making as much sense as my idea to stay here, so I’ve made my decision…Champaign wins for one more year.

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Lastly, To My Friends and My Family: I’m sorry. I’m so sorry for shutting you out, not listening and rebelling against you when you were just trying to help. I wish that I would have listened to your advice earlier, but I hear you loud and clear now and thank God it’s not too late. I can’t wait for another year with some of you and for the rest of you to come visit! Love you all, AAFNMW.

Al

She Designed a Life She Loved.

“What good is livin’ the life you’ve been given if all you do is stand in one place?”
– Lord Huron

The only word I have in my head right now is bliss. Sheer bliss.  I am receiving the amazing opportunity to travel throughout this incredible world with my best friend, sister, soulmate, my rock, my cousin, Kendra. I am the luckiest girl.

292878_10150286292526173_525871172_8126293_1900853_nIf you know me at all, you know this is something I have been waiting to do forever. I decided not to study abroad in college because I know I am just too free-spirited to be in a new country with new people… new everything, but then have to go to class or follow a schedule of where to be and when. I mean a schedule of countries, sure, but something didn’t feel right about studying abroad. So, I passed that chance up multiple times, decided on graduating early and using that money to travel through Europe and I can now officially say that huge risk paid off and I am over-the-moon ecstatic about it.

We booked these cities/regions:
Athens
Mykonos
Pompeii
Rome
Florence
Venice
Tyrol Region
Munich
Prague
Nuremberg
Heidelberg
Amsterdam
Bruges
Paris
The French Riviera
Barcelona
*Of course, if you have any suggestions for any of these places,
things to do, restaurants, beaches, etc., please let me know!

I have to say how blessed I feel right now. I have the greatest parents to be sending me on a trip like this, the most fantastic family to support us on our journey, the most amazing best friend & cousin to be coming with me and sharing this experience with me and the most perfect God and guardian angel, gramma, to guide us on the trip of a lifetime. I said it once, but I’ll say it again, I really am the luckiest girl in the world. I cannot wait to leave, but planning the details of this trip is going to be so much fun, too, so I’m just going to enjoy this time and take in every moment leading up to it. I know I’m going to want this time back one day.

IMG_9205As it unfolds, there will be plenty more posts. We leave June 30th, (right after my 21st birthday in Vegas…can this be any better?!) so we’ve still got some time, but a trip like this could never have enough excitement and the words in this post cannot convey how absolutely, exceptionally elated I am.

I love you, Kenners. Thank you for being my person and my best friend every single day, for being you. I cannot wait to share this amazing journey with you & experience all that this world has to offer together. Here’s to laughing until we cry, to trying new things in new places with new people and to the memories we’ll make that will last a lifetime! aafnmw.

My viaggi futuri Pinterest board can now be my viaggi presto board. Love it.

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Al

“I Said I’d Never Let You Go & I Never Did…

…I said I’d never let you fall & I always meant it.”

I heard those lyrics the other day while I was running and I started thinking about how many people we make promises with. People make promises to always be there and then one day, they’re just not. (Okay, not so subtle of me. Sorry…)

But. How messed up is that? “I promise to always be there. I promise I’ll never leave.” Well, they aren’t always there and they do leave. Moral of the story: People lie. People are selfish. People suck.

“Just so we’re clear, it’s okay to miss people you no longer want in your life.”

So, what I learned is only to rely on myself. People in my life might come and go, but until I find people that are permanent, seriously permanent, I have to learn to rely on myself, just love, appreciate, nurture my relationship with myself. Not to say I don’t have permanent people now, I have many, but I have realized I have had to terminate a few toxic relationships in the past year and, although that was the best choice for me, it is still hard to deal with the aftermath of losing once valuable relationships. I’m not going to sit here and say “the grass is greener” and I’m so much happier, that would be attention-seeking and a blatant lie, but I do know that I’m headed in a healthy direction and that is something I didn’t think I could say a few months ago.

I’m the kind of person to never give up on anyone and that has caused me so much pain before. I have a very, very hard time letting go of the past. But today I decided that I’m going to do my best to let go. Let go of those people who have let go of me. Let go of people who have broke their promises to me. Let. Go.

“You are allowed to terminate toxic relationships.
You are allowed to walk away from people who hurt you.
You are allowed to be angry and selfish and unforgiving.
You don’t owe anyone and explanation for taking care of yourself.”

This post might seem negative, but I don’t mean it to be. I just want to feel more free. Free of the chains that bind me to the negative ties of the past.  I don’t want to feel regrets for things I cannot change or things that I know I did not do wrong, even if people may try to convince me that I did. I just want to learn from them. So today, I will let go. I will hold true to my beliefs. I will acknowledge my faults and the places where I am still growing, but I will not feel defeated or broken down. There are far better things ahead and I will let my heart search for them.

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Al

Happies.

Something I’ve been pondering lately is how we, as human beings, let other human beings make or break our day and it is so bizarre to me. Doing small things like opening a door for someone, smiling at someone walking past you or introducing yourself to someone new can make our entire day, but then on the other hand, ignoring someone, saying something hurtful or forgetting something important to another person can make us feel unimportant or let down.

But why can’t we make our own happiness? If you think about it, we’re the only ones who truly know how to make ourselves happy.  No one else in the world knows the things that make your soul rejoice or your heart smile, so why wouldn’t you do those things for yourself?  Start your morning with your favorite coffee, even if that means waking up five minutes earlier. Download the new music you’ve been wanting and listen to it while you’re on a walk or take an hour to do yoga or go workout. Whatever makes us happy, why don’t we just do it? Instead, we just let other people’s words and actions bear this heavy weight on our minds and waste our precious energy and a day goes by that we could have used on bettering ourselves.

I’m going to challenge myself to do at least one more thing each day that makes me happy. When someone does something that I think could have the potential to ruin my day, or a thought comes into my head that could possibly bring me down, I’m going to add another “happy.” My hope is that all the “happies” will just add up so the “sads” will be so small that I won’t even notice them anymore. Food for thought!

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Al

Your Opinion is Not My Reality.

“Your soul knows the geography of your destiny.
Your soul alone has the map of your future,
Therefore you can trust this indirect, oblique side of yourself.
If you do, it will take you where you need to go,
But more importantly it will teach you a kindness
Of rhythm in your journey.”
-John O’Donohue

I saw this poem earlier and I thought I would just write a post about self-worth. So many of us get so caught up in our daily struggles or what other people say or think about us. I’ll be the first one to admit that I’m guilty of this. Read this next sentence very carefully. “Your opinion is not my reality.” No one else can tell you what you think of yourself; your opinion is the only one that matters. How do you want others to perceive you? What mark do you want to leave on the world? Think about those questions every morning when you wake up and start your day.

Like John O’Donohue’s poem above says, your soul knows the map of your future. It knows where to take you and it will not lead you astray. Trust your soul and your intuition. You will end exactly where you are supposed to, so do not stress. There will be bad days, but they are all leading you where you were meant to be. If there were no bad days, how would you know how good a great day feels? Follow yourself and let your heart light shine into the world and you will leave a beautiful imprint wherever you go.

I could read this post a hundred times over, but even then it might not be enough to cleanse my mind of the things the people who I thought were the closest to me have said to hurt me in my past, but I am healing. Every second and every day is part of that process. I need to make the conscious effort to push those people and those thoughts out of my mind and have a free spirit and a pure mind.  My aunt told me this today, I know the real me, God knows the real me, my family knows the real me. That is what matters. God would not have brought me this far to abandon me. Like the poem, I need to trust my soul and the path it is on to my destiny and know these trials and “happy accidents” are all a part of that beautiful journey.

One day, I will look back at the hard days and smile. So for now, I’m going to do my best to breathe and accept them for what they are. I will do my best to remember my self-worth and I will not let anyone tell me any negative thoughts.

Al

Things I Never Said

I totally realize I haven’t posted in a while…like two months. I’ve been going through a little bit of a personal remolding time. I like that word “remolding” because it’s like I know the foundation of the person I am, but I know there are things I want to reform and change and that’s exactly what I’m allowing myself to do right now. Going through this period of my life has made me really appreciate these things and, normally, I would be bitter and resent this time, probably want to rush through it as quickly as possible, but I feel blessed to be able to see the world through this lens right now.

When I got into bed last night, I had this burst of perfectly balanced emotions where I realized how many things I love that I didn’t even know about myself and I’ve found them through this remolding and it’s so nice to enjoy my own company.

That’s the beauty about right now. We get to learn who we are and who we want to be. We get to learn what makes our absolute being happy. We get to learn what path we are on and what that path is made ofThink about it. What is yours made of? Are you walking on stone? dirt? glitter? glass? Are there trees or fog in your way or is it wide open? Do you want to change it? Do you want to start on a new path completely? Well, here’s your chance. The world is entirely before you.

Anyways, back to my moment, these are my new found happies.
I love being by myself. I love being free. I love the idea of not answering questions..just learning the answers. So many inquiries as to “what’s next?” I love living in the now and just leaving it simply unanswered. I love choosing whatever I want to do next and learning to go with the natural flow of life. Things are going to happen whether I make them a big production or not, so why waste valuable energy? I love not planning now. I love that my soul and my temple is being rebuilt.

I love the feeling of a workout and putting good health back into my body. I love the smell of a candle while reading a thought-provoking book (Buddhist Bootcamp by Timber Hawkeye, currently). I love the feeling of best friends just being next to you..or down the street..or in the same state, now. (: I love the feeling of lying on a yoga mat in Balasana (child’s pose) and breathing in every ounce of positive energy I can find. I love having nothing to do and I love having everything to do at the same time. I love reading poems by John O’Donohue. I love finding the good in the simple things of the day and finding the small things to celebrate each day, even if it’s just that I woke up that morning. I love giving people a reason to smile, even if I can’t necessarily find one for myself at that moment.

I love sleeping in big beds alone. Not to say that waking up next to the person whose soul I am enamored with is not completely fulfilling, but there are so many years for that. Or maybe there are not. But all I know it right now, I love this bed. And these songs. And these intangible feelings. And this life I am building for myself.

 

All through your life your soul takes care of you.
Your soul is alive and awakened, gathering, sheltering,
Guiding your ways and days in the world.
In effect, your soul is your secret shelter.
-John O’Donohue

Al

A Kerm is a Second Self.

It’s coming up on a year ago that the “kerm” was hatched, so what better time is there to write a post about her?! Trick question, there is no better time. Every time is great for a kerm talk.

So, I just stumbled upon this link talking about seven signs that you know you have a real best friend. I “literally can’t handle” how perfect this is for us. Every single point has been done between us numerous times and some of my best memories with you have somehow been captured in an Elite Daily post. Now, side note, I’ve had best friends before and I still have other best friends, but no one quite compares to my kermsauce.

From the time during fall semester last year that you were brutally honest with me and told me you “didn’t like me throughout high school and now you’re obsessed with me,” I knew you were going to be someone I wanted around for a long time. You’re just as big of an asshole as I am and that alone makes me love you to death. You made that clear again when you told me you hated my dreads, but if anyone could pull of this style, it’s me. (Took that as a compliment as much as possible.) But shotgunning energy drinks the night of finals in my kitchen and not sleeping for two days straight sealed the deal. You’re also just as weird as I am and that’s saying a hell of a lot.

I have found, in you, my best friend and my person. You are my absolute go-to (as you saw at 3:56 am on Sunday morning) and the best advice giver in the world. I have found security in knowing that I can trust you in any situation and you make me laugh harder than anyone ever has. I know that I want you in my life forever because you’re the only person that can be brutally honest with me and tell me when I’m right or wrong and not feel bad either way. You back me up in any situation, whether it’s just talking me through a situation or literally threatening people’s existence when they say rude comments to or about me. You love my family and that alone makes me feel like you’re my sister, but the bond we share exemplifies that to the extreme.

I am so lucky to have finally found the person I’ve always wanted to have in my life. I am so lucky to have you and as my sister in Alpha Phi and in the shish world, too. I am so happy that I came to U of I solely based on the fact that I got to become best friends with you and change your stupid high school opinion of me. I really don’t know where I’d be without you, kermboo.

Just to end this, a few comparisons to let everyone know just how attached we are…
You’re the Daisy Duck to my Minnie Mouse.
You’re the Opie to my Jax Teller.
You’re the Gru to my Minion.
You’re the lime to my tequila and the Jack to my diet coke.
You’re the Marta Foote Crow to my…..who are the other founders?
You’re the Jimmy Johns to my Torticas.
You’re the Toews to my Kane.
You’re the Insomnia Cookie to my Berry Juicy Juice.
You’re the Stabler to my Benson.
You’re the Yolk to my Burnett’s.
You’re the Pumpkin Spice Latte to my Fleece Vest.
You’re the Tinkerbelle to my Alice in Wonderland.
You’re the Margartiaville to my Red Lion.
You’re the iParty to my Semi-formal.
You’re the Redbull to my Monster.
You’re the kerm to my kerm.

PS. I’m sorry this sounds like a love letter.
PPS. No, I’m not. Lesbikerms.

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AlKerm.

Great Minds Discuss Ideas, Small Minds Discuss People.

I think I realized something this weekend and I feel like it’s important enough to talk about here.

People are ALWAYS going to talk. They’re going to say hurtful, rude things just to make themselves feel better about their lives, when in reality, if they’re having to talk about you in the first place, clearly their lives are so miserable that they have nothing better to do. The thing I realized, and I’ve actually been able to fully embrace, is that no matter what they say, as long as you believe in yourself,  you’re better than them. You’re already ten steps ahead.

There’s a saying that goes, “Pay no mind to those who talk behind your back, it simply means you are two steps ahead.” How. True. If someone has to talk about you and the things you do and even judge you based on them, you’re obviously doing something right. If you were just a boring person, they’d have nothing to talk about at all.

The thing I want to always remind myself in times like this is that there are no way for me to stop people from talking. I can’t control what people say or do. Butcan control how I react towards these people or how I let their words affect me. I have really always been a wall…I never let the negative things people say get to me that much, if at all. But, I’m a human. So of course, sometimes it’ll get to me. Just remembering the fact that they’re talking about me for a reason alone makes me feel much better.

I have always talked up my “support system,” but times like this make me realize how great they really, truly are. My family, kerm, my roommates and my friends at school are purely God sent. People talking about you don’t know what you’re going through in your life, they probably don’t even care and spew hateful words. But the people in your corner are there to back you up, no matter what. They know what is really going on and they know the real you. Keep these people forever and cherish them for the amazing beings that they are.

At the end of the day, you begin to feel bad for these people. They have nothing else to do except talk about you and look deeper into your life to find things to use against you. Pray for these people. Pray that they find happiness in their life and in their soul that they are seeking by attempting, and failing, to bring yours down. Keep your head up and pay no mind to those who abuse the privilege to be a part of your extraordinary story.

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Al

…Please Don’t Take My Sunshine Away.

Whenever I hear this, I think of you. (This was the song that she sent me last night that I talked about on my status. I’m still in shock. I am so lucky.)

And I have absolutely no way to describe the feeling that I have right now knowing that you’ve been gone for three years. Three. Years. When I say it like that, it doesn’t seem too long. I mean, hell, college has gone by quicker than I can even fathom. But when I look back on how much has happened in three years, it’s an eternity. How much I’ve had to go through in my life without you being here with me. You would be so proud of all your babies here. I have to say, you raised the greatest three girls in the whole world. Auntie Gina is the most caring and genuine person I think I’ve ever met. To have her as my aunt is truly an inspiration and I’m so honored and lucky to have someone so strong to look up to. Auntie Mona is, to this day, someone I can go to in any given situation, no matter what. She’s such a good friend and an even better aunt. She gives the greatest advice and knows exactly how to make your day when you need it. I’m so happy for her that she’s found Quinn and I have a pretty good feeling you were behind that, so I’m sure she’s so thankful to you. And then there’s my mom. I know that she and you had a very unique relationship and I know that because so do she and I. As I’m getting older now and starting to look back on my past 20 years on the planet and I realize that these are the last times I’ll have with her before I graduate and start  my life, I’m starting to realize how great she really is. Not many people can say they have a best friend in their mom, but I really do. I haven’t been the perfect daughter by any means, but she looks past my flaws and mistakes and loves me like you did and that alone makes me the luckiest girl in the world. She cares about me more than just a “motherly instinct,” but as a best friend and as someone who, I genuinely know, won’t give up on me and will always have my back. She is the perfect mom and I have you to thank for that because I know you were so perfect, too. Us grandbabies ain’t so bad either. Zach’s in college in Mesa and as bad-ass as ever. Garrett is killin’ it in high school and is driving now! I still have my voicemail on our phone of you wishing me good luck on my first day of driving. I’ll have to send that to him now. Emma is just the greatest little human in the entire world. She’s so thoughtful and sweet and precious and perfect. Sam and Kendra came this summer for the weekend and I’m so beyond happy I got to spend time with them. I know you were there, too. I’m so incredibly blessed to have those two in my life because they, along with Z, G and Emma, are some of my best friends and I’m so lucky that they’re my family. You left a phenomenal legacy here in your family and I will never be able to thank you enough for giving me this never-failing support system.

I can still see us six standing over you on that last day and Sam telling us how lucky we are to have had the experiences and the beautiful, perfect moments that we had with you. Who else in the world could say that they had a best friend in someone who was 70 years older than they are? No one, but I can. Your advice and your guidance gets me through even my toughest days here and that’s something that I will never be able to replace.

I still cry every time I Love You, Baby comes on or I see old pictures of us. I found some old cards from you telling me how much you love me, your “sunshine,” but what you don’t realize is you were mine, too. You still are. You made my life so bright and so warm and my childhood would never have been even a fraction of as perfect as it was if you weren’t a part of it. The problem is, now, my sunshine is gone. Please don’t take my sunshine away. That line always made me cry when I was little because I couldn’t imagine my sunshine being taken away, but three years ago, it was and, now, I’m starting to realize that I’m not sure how to go on without it. I’ve never felt more loved than I did with you. I never had more fun watching a LifeTime movie or going to the “beauty shop” or laying in bed and talking about what the perfect life would be like. I’ve never seen someone more beautiful. I’ve never seen more happiness or love than with you and papa. I’m so lucky to have been able to witness those things because I know now what sheer bliss is because of you.

I just realized I’m writing this like a letter to you. Like, I’m hoping you’re reading it or hearing it in my head or something. I know you and I still have our little ways of communicating, but I want you to actually know all of this. I am so lucky to have had seventeen exquisite years with you and those will be something I cherish for the rest of my life. Every day you are on my mind. I know you’ll continue to stay there and you’ll be there for every milestone that I have from here on out. I know that there are going to be thunderstorms that hide my sunshine and some days will feel worse than others, but I promise you that at the end of those and even during their darkest points, I will still seek my sunshine. I will always look for you in my toughest moments and seek  your wisdom, whether that be through your words you left me with, the people you left behind here or just simply seeking you by myself in my soul.

“I love you more than the words of this letter can convey and more than you or I could even fathom.” I wrote that to you in our book and you best believe I still mean that. I’ll open our book and a bottle of wine for you tonight and know that my being and my soul will celebrate the person that you were and are and everything that I do is for you. Always and Forever, No Matter What. Oh yeah, and thanks for being you! I love you more.

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Al

Dream Big, Little Chief.

“I’m so anxious.”

If you’ve been around me for anymore than about fourteen seconds in the last two weeks, you’ve heard some variation of this sentence come out of my mouth. Anxiety. What is it? How the hell am I supposed to deal with it? I’M IN COLLEGE. WHY DO I EVEN HAVE IT?

Anxiety is really just getting overwhelmed, right? But if my life is so great like everyone says it is, why am I anxious? Here’s the deal, it’s not perfect. No one’s life is perfect. Not mine. Not anyone’s, but it is amazing. It’s my kind of perfect. I like to do the spontaneous, out-of-left-field type things. But with those kind of decisions, anxiety trails right behind along with stress and about nineteen other negative associations.

I’ve been reevaluating a lot in my life the past few weeks and I think that’s because my graduating in May just became official. I am OFFICIALLY done with college as of May 2014. Like, what??? After my whirlwind college experience, from the 24/7 rage in Arizona to the amazing days I’ve had in Illinois, I think it’s safe to say no one thought I would be graduating on time, let alone early. But here I am. Proved you all wrong. Suckers.

That’s one thing I love to do. Prove people wrong. Everyone holds people to expectations and wants them to do things their way. But who are they to talk? No one. That’s the answer. No one. So getting to defy all of the odds against me and finish my college chapter and open up the next one is absolutely awesome to me.

A lot of people are criticizing the graduating early thing. To acknowledge this as bluntly as possible, I don’t actually care what you think. I’m sorry. It is my life, my decision and for someone to tell me that it’s wrong is kind of absurd to me. I think that graduating early opens a lot of doors and opportunities and I like to think I’m about 95% ready for them and I’m hoping by May I’ll be 100%, but if I’m not, whatever.

Back to the anxiety. I know that this anxiety is coming from thinking about my future. With job interviews happening and figuring out how many days I’ll have to actually live in my parents’ house on top of the school stuff here, it’s just all too much sometimes. I know with Kerm and my parents I have a pretty kick-ass support system, but still there are times I want to just sit in my car and scream for about three hours, maybe listen to some Mumf or Lord Huron or the Lumineers and cry and then recollect my life and sanity. But that’s not really considered normal most of the time, so I went to Bloomington today to see my family instead and I realized something. That’s what this post is about so pay attention right now.

THERE ARE GOING TO BE BAD DAYS. If you don’t have any bad days, there’s no way for you to know how great the good ones really are. So what I’ve learned is to embrace those shitty days and let them happen. Feel sorry for yourself and eat a damn red velvet cupcake or drink a bottle of wine. Throw your book across the room and go take a nap instead of going to class. (Maybe not the best advice but….) Then, the next day when you wake up and the problem is beginning to be solved and someone does a random act of kindness towards you and you smile, your entire mood will turn around. It’ll feel like a weight was lifted off your shoulders and good for you. You let it made it happen that way because you let the universe take its toll on you and you won. Kudos.

Second thing I realized. I was driving home and I got lost. At first I was like “oh, $@&!. Where do I go? This is FOR SURE going to end up on Dateline. My body, side of the road, like Fargo (God help that movie).” But then I pulled onto some back dirt road, turned my headlights off, put the music even louder and looked at the sky and just sat. Literally. I just sat there. I was like one of those lame quotes off of Tumblr or something. I have no idea how long I was there. After what seemed like maybe twenty minutes, could have been like three hours, I grabbed a napkin and a pen and started writing. I wrote everything that was stressing me out and everything that was making me happy. I vowed to myself, on some farm road of some family that I’ll never know, that I would use those things starting today. I would take the things that were negative in my life or affecting my days in a stressful way and I would stare them right in the face and fix them. If it was something out of my power, I would fix my attitude on it. I would take the things that were positive in my life and made me obnoxiously thrilled to be alive and I would embrace them. I would tell those people how much they meant to me and I would nurture the relationship so that it would never ever go away or keep doing the happy things. In essence, I looked my life in the eye tonight and I challenged it.

My post advice to you is to try this. Do it in your own way. Find your own path with your own happiness and your own sadness and trials. Be free to experience what your life is, but challenge the universe as it is challenging you. You never know what will happen next. Good luck, my little babes.

Al