Archive for the ‘my mom’ Tag

you look at the world with large brown eyes searching, believing, always wondering why.   1 comment

I really don’t know where to begin.  Gosh, I don’t even know what to say.  But I do feel like I need to say something. For my own sake, I need to say something.  On my last post I shared that I had a big decision to make, and I’m (sorta) happy to report that I made that decision or at least part of it.  And while I was happy about that decision, I found myself saddened by having to raise my voice in defending my decision to my mother.  To my mother, the woman who I hoped would understand and support my decision to overcome any obstacles and follow my heart.  I am so disappointed and upset with her right now that I honestly do not plan on talking to her anytime soon.  It breaks my heart but right now I cannot bear to be surrounded by anything/anyone that does not support my decision to pursue, what I believe to be, my life’s calling.

With my frustrations running down my cheeks (in the form of tears) as I rode the bus home this evening, I found myself struggling to make sense of it all.  From the decision I’ve been trying to finalize for months now until the moment my mom expressed her disapproval, I just couldn’t understand what lesson was meant to be learned.  Isn’t there always a lesson to be learned?  Isn’t there always a reason why everything happens? 

I stared out the rain-covered bus windows as the same-old thoughts and questions ran through my emotionally drained mind.  There I was again, Searching… Believing… (Always) Wondering Why.  Why can’t things be simple this time?  Why can’t I finally make my decision and be on my way to the happiness I seek?

As I look back on my life, I truly appreciate every bump in the road; every scar on my heart; and every mistake that turned into a lesson learned.  That’s the beauty of reflecting back on the past- you’re filled with admiration.  But when those bumps, scars, and mistakes are happening now, well it’s another story.  It’s difficult to gain perspective when you’re feeling overwhelmed with confusion and, perhaps, some heartache.  However, it’s not impossible.  For what we can do is take a very, very deep breath and let ourself take a moment to look down on the situation with (as) clear (of) eyes (as possible). So these large brown eyes of mine are going to keep searching for clarity; keep believing in my heart’s passion; and continue wondering why I let things get in my way of obtaining true happiness.  XOXO

PS. Thanks for letting me get this off my chest. It’s been a long day and this really helps me feel a bit better.

when we see each other time doesn’t matter. each time we see each other, it’s wonderful.   4 comments

Since last Christmas, I’ve calculated having only spent 5 nights in my bedroom…in my parents’ house.  The bedroom that I claimed as a 4-year old and lived in until moving to Columbus 3.5 years ago.  The bedroom that my parents still referred to as “your room”.  (I know, they miss me.) 

So saying I was anxious about returning to Pittsburgh for the holidays is most definitely an understatement.  With a 3 am wake-up call to make a 6:55 am flight, I mustered up all my sanity and excitement in enduring the chaos that was Midway Airport yesterday.  Before I knew it, since I had passed out immediately after taking off, we were on the airport runway in Pittsburgh, and ten minutes later I was hugging my mom- whom I hadn’t seen since our late August vacation.  Being with her felt so good.  It felt really good to be home.

After breakfast at Cracker Barrel, we headed to the city to visit Grandma.  As we sat upstairs in my grandma’s bedroom, looking through all of her jewelery, I remembered sitting in that room many years ago (at least 15 years) interviewing Pap about being a Navy veteran for a class project.  It was there that nostalgia set in.  Again, it felt really good to be home.

One day, most likely under the influence of a tired state of mind, I concocted a thought, or rather proposed a question to ponder: Am I being selfish by desiring to live far, far away from my family?  Am I being a bad daughter; a bad sister; a bad granddaughter by living far, far away?  Any thoughts?  Shared experiences?

About 6 weeks ago I considered applying for a position at the Children’s Hospital in Seattle, which elicited some push-back from my parents, “We never see you now, and we can’t imagine seeing you any less if you moved all the way across the country.”   At first I found myself bitter with disappointment: How can they not understand that this is what I want to do with my life?  This is what makes me happy…don’t they want me to finally be happy?  But with honest communication, initiated by me, concerns were shared and an understanding was made.  (Note: I chose not to apply for the job in Seattle.)

So here I am, spending the next 10 days in the company of my family…with a few days in Ohio to visit friends in the mix… and I realize how much I miss my family.  But I also know that, while these last two days have been wonderful, Pittsburgh is not the city for me (anymore).  Sure, it’s been nice running into people  at Panera and Giant Eagle (which this Pittsburgh girl pronounces “iggle”…deal with it.) and having dates with my family; however, I cannot ignore the little voice that says, This is how it’s always going to be.  You’re always going to pack up and leave ‘home’ again.  Your parents are always going to live here and you’re always going to live anywhere but here.  This is your life, Kristen Medica.  This is how it’s always going to be.

Even at the age of 27 and being very much fulfilled (and busy) with life right now, I’ll still admit that I find myself homesick from time to time.  Everytime I’m sick, I wish my mom was there to make me tea & toast.  And when I feel like chillin’ out on a weekend night, I miss my dad and his tipsy talks even more.  And with Nicky, I always want him to be around for a movie date or a drive (walk) around town.   

But even though I know this holiday break is going to eventually end, I’m going to let myself enjoy the company I’m fortunate to have.  Luckily, I know the feeling is mutual…

“It’s really nice to have you home, Kristen,” my dad told me last night before heading upstairs to go to bed.   

“It’s nice to be home, Dad.” 

don’t believe the things you tell yourself so late at night. you are your own worst enemy, you’ll never win the fight.   2 comments

I know I’m stressed or tired when I talk to my mom about boys, and I’m both stressed and tired when I bring up Casey to her.  While my mom is one of my confidantes now, it wasn’t always the case- due to my own lack of appreciation for her (most likely), so talking to her about boys, let alone the one who (both) had and broke my heart was certainly off topic for us.  But the day came when I finally opened up to her, but to this day I still don’t think she gets it.  How can she (?) since I don’t get it either?

Today I did say his name, but it was unlike any of those other few times before.  Today I said, and I quote, in my rambling, stressed & tired state of mind, soul, and body, “It feels so good to not be thinking about Casey anymore.”  It really does.

With the exception of today, and even amidst all of the go-go-go these past few days, this week has gone fairly well.  How could it not when I spend 3 days in the presence of remarkable kids and 2 days with a dear friend?  Simply put, things have gone fairly well and I’ve felt really good.  I’ve been happy.  Now I’m not exactly sure what the catalyst is, besides the fact that I spent hours upon hours in the presence of newborns, toddlers, and inspirational little warriors (kids).  I personally think there’s a bit more to it.  I think I’ve found out where I belong.

Yesterday I shared that I saw Love and Other Drugs last night and that my review was still being processed.  In talking with my mom earlier, when not about boys, I mentioned that “it will be one of those movies that I’ll watch over and over again to explore the notions it presents and how those personally appeal/connect to me.” 

Without re-watching the movie today, I found myself on the bus back from Soldier Field, following my conversation and epiphany via my mom’s phone call, thinking about the theme that I took from the movie: That it’s okay to need someone else and not always rely only on yourself.

I’ve taken care of myself for so long, especially these last two years, that I confide in my friends that I think I’ll always be single because I don’t know how to let anyone take care of me.  Like other anxiety-ridden and tired nights, tonight I found myself feeding fuel to the fire of this irrational belief that no one will ever be able to let me let him in. 

But after thinking my talk with Dina on Wednesday (wow, that was Wednesday?) as she shared her own storiesI know that it takes the love of the right guy to hold your hand as you continue along the path you’ve chosen to follow.  Thinking about my friends’ loves- Dina included- and the reassuring gift of hope that I’ve recently received in the form a wonderful guy, I see it more clearly than I have in a long time, or perhaps ever.  As for the latter, even if this guy turns out to be another friend along the journey, I’ll take it.  Anyone that can restore my faith that there are good guys still out there is someone who I hope will always be in my life, in whatever capacity I’d be fortunate to hold.  He’s a rare find, that one, and will make some girl extremely happy.  No doubts here.

For at least the second time in the past month, my mom instructed me, during one of our phone calls, “Don’t run away.”  Well Mom, I promise you that I won’t run away anymore.  Not now. Not next time. Not ever.

 

Songs of the Moment: Parachute by Ingrid Michaelson- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gza-E4k_1OE and Maybe by Ingrid Michaelson- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKU3UuJhIxU&feature=related

don’t you think 19 is too young to be played by your dark, twisted games?   2 comments

I’ve sat on this thought for a long time.  Probably at least 6 years, if not more.  But I’m not sure if I have ever voiced it out loud (to myself) or to anyone else.  Instead it’s an idea that has rolled around in my mind time-and-time-again, but I never knew how best to put those thoughts & feelings into words.  Lucky for me, the ever-so-talented Hannah of As Simple As That wrote the words for me:

A role model of mine once talked with me on matters of life & love and a sudden romance that can make the two hold hands with one another. She said the most meaningful kind of love that I would one day encounter is when I am fully full, wholly whole. And I reach out my hand to another who is fully full, wholly whole. And together we will not complete one another. But there will be no denying: we will make one another better. We will be each other’s superb add-ons.

~ Hannah Katy @ www.hannahkaty.com

Thanks so much, Hannah!  Your thoughts have allowed me to find the words to convey mine.  Once again, you are an inspiration.

Every girl knows the line from Jerry Maguire “You complete me.” – that is at fault for furthering our fairy tale notion that we are not complete without another loving us.  Or as my friend, Amanda, told me at my impressionable age of nineteen (or a few days into being twenty), “One day you’ll find your puzzle piece.  Your perfect fit.  Then it will all come together and you’ll be complete.” 

I strongly dislike admitting this, but I believed Amanda’s theory.  There wasn’t a puzzle piece that I didn’t meet (figuratively speaking) that didn’t make me think of her line.  But that was then, and time & experiences have definitely introduced me to new ideas. Who began this urban legend anyways?  Who began this brain-washing belief we are not complete unless we have a ring on our left hand?  Is this another marketing scheme from Hallmark?

Feeding off Hannah’s idea, it is I (me) who makes myself “fully full, wholly whole”.  It is you who makes yourself “fully full, wholly whole”.  I cannot complete you.  You cannot complete me.  But instead, we (as two full, whole people) that can make one another better. 

Sure, I can say that now, with years of lessons learned weighing down my shoulers; however, when you’re a nineteen-year old optimistic, hopeless-romantic and fate comes and sweeps you off your feet, all ration is absent.  The butterflies tingle in your stomach and daydreams fill your head with plans for the your future: yours & his together.  Soon you’re not a “me” but a “we”.  You mistakenly believe that this is your other half; your destiny; la tua cantante; your soulmate.  But in fact, he/she is just another person, another part of the equation instead of half of the whole.  I can say this because I made the mistake, at the ripe young age of 19-20, only to learn the fateful lesson later: You are your own soulmate.  You complete yourself.  When you finally see that for yourself, you are saving yourself from a lot of doubt, confusion, and heartbreak. 

If I only knew what I know now.  When I was 19-years old, a few weeks before my first year at OU, Fate decided to play a game with me.  It released its butterflies and spun my head around a few times one summer afternoon in Athens, leaving me questioning what the heck was that?  To be honest I’m still not sure what “that” was nor everything that followed, but I think it’s best to classify it all as…hmm…a lesson to be learned, perhaps?  Whatever it was, that “lesson” has led me to where I am today.  It’s helped me see that there is no such thing as a soulmate to complete you.  Instead, there is a person out there- many people in fact- that will make you better, but it is always up to you to complete yourself. 

“You cannot expect someone to love you until you love yourself.”  Even though she said it to me years ago (around the age of 20 years old), I can still hear my mom’s voice speaking these words to me.  I’ve mentioned this before, but when she first said it to me my immediate thought was, I’ll love me when someone else loves me.  But now I know the truth: My mom was absolutely 100% right.  I didn’t see it at 19-years old nor at 20, and heck I didn’t even see it at 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, nor the beginning of 26.  But things have changed in the past year and I see it now.  At 27-years old, I finally see it more clearly than ever before.  My foolish thoughts of another completing are long-gone, and instead I strive to find myself in order to better the others I encounter, as they will likewise better me.

I truly believe that all of this and “that’ was part of my life’s journey.  The bumps & bruises and hills & mountains that are helping me become fully full and wholly whole.  I’m not there yet, but I know I’ll get there.  Knowing how far I’ve come since I was 19-years old is proof and my aspirations drive me to keep learning & growing.  Others- family, friends, mentors, love interests- are there to help guide and support me along my way, but I am the one who can complete me.  The only one.  And one day, if completeness is truly possible, I will.  And when I find him, whoever he may be, I know that I’ll be the same- but better.

Song of the Moment: Where Would We Be Now by Good Charlotte

those sweet words   Leave a comment

Sticks and Stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.  We all know these words very well as they were first spoken as a lesson to be learned from our parents, grandparents, and/or teachers.  As kids we fought off mean words could only be cured with a plate of fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies and chocolate milk.  As teenagers we battled high school cliques and name-calling that bruised our self-image until we were old enough to fully understand the concept of jealousy and bullying.  And for some, fortunately not myself, those college years surrounded by ex-boyfriend and ex-girlfriend drama, as well as the fratastic and sorowhorish (no harm nor ill-will intended!) initiations and (surprise) jealousy again that resonates on the sticky floors and booze-infested air.  Unfortunately when you graduate college and must finally admit your adult status, the drama and pettiness is supposed to end.  (It doesn’t.)  Do the mean words ever stop being spoken?  Oh well, sticks & stones…

If we’re supposed to let mean words go in-one-ear-and-out-the-other, what is the route that kind, complimentary words are meant to follow?  They’re just words too so should they not have as great of an impact as generous actions?  Right?  Words are just words, after all.  We hear them all the time.  We say them ourselves.  Some we speak with such conviction, while others merely come out carelessly as soon as we open our mouths.

Why do some words haunt us?  They are only words.  We hear thousands of them each day.  We speak millions of words in year.  We do not remember half of the things that we hear nor the words we even say.  So then why do certain words stick with us- the good, the bad, and the evil words? 

So which is which? How do we know which words are, well, lies, and which are spoken honesty and compassion?  Why do we tend to fall for the lies?  And more importantly, why is it so darn hard for us to believe those sweets words that people say to us?  Why do we question their meaning?  Why do we question the person’s intention from which they are spoken?

Where am I going with these words?  So this weekend, in a non-sober state, I had two different set of words from two different people (boys) spoken to me that are sticking with me still today- almost 40 hours later.  It’s not a broken record scenario, but I do find myself pondering their validity, especially the first set of words- which I’ll mention second. 

The words “…you are a gorgeous girl…” were spoken by a sober former friend and friend-with-benefits to a drunken girl on the other end.  (Yes, I drunk dialed.)  I honestly do not remember most of our conversation, although he did confirm that I was not slurring my words- but I do remember this phrase with emphasis on “gorgeous girl” part.  I did not expect it- from him nor anyone- and therefore I most likely had a deer-caught-in-headlights look going on.  Like I said, I just didn’t expect to hear those words.

“Beautiful” and Gorgeous”…what is it about these two words?  Why do they carry such a powerful impact?  And why do we question the reason behind the speaker who directs these words to us? 

My faux Facebook boyfriend, Phill, used to tell me that I was “beautiful” too many times back in my college days.  And while I didn’t believe it myself, I still felt such comfort and confidence in hearing this one always unexpected word.  In a way it was my drug of choice because I was always high on life, for at least hopefully a few hours, until I torn my self-esteem and body image back around. 

“Beautiful” is by far the best unexpected word that one can say and hear.  “You are beautiful.” Yes, YOU.  You are beautiful.

Moving on…

The first phrase from Saturday that was muttered to me is one that I’ll never forget.  It meant so much to me.  Not only was in unexpected, but it was honest.  As tough as I am on myself and accepting compliments I can not in any way, shape, nor form fight off these genuine words with my own doubts and insecurities. 

Out of total respect for the person and the situation in which it was spoken, I will not indulge you with more details.   Instead I will share these words with you: “(I told her that) you are the greatest person in Chicago and that she had to meet you.”  Even with 2.5 glasses of wine in me at that point, I was sober.  I looked at the speaker, whom I’ve only known for a few weeks now, with such compassion and appreciation.  What else can you do when someone says that to you?  Not even I could find contradictory words to overpower those sweet words and instead I only what I could… I believed them.  Sure, there are people greater than me in this city…like Oprah…but knowing that these words came from the heart and were just spoken in a self-serving manner, I let myself believe them. 

If you read my post from last night, you know that some words were spoken to me (by my parents) that I didn’t interpret so sweetly.  So I responded back with honest words, which led their honesty to come out.  In other words, I feel a lot better that we were both able to say what we meant. 

We all know people who talk a lot,  but how many people really speak anymore?  How many people really say something when they talk?  How many people make an impact on others by the words they say?  How many people make a difference when they speak and/or empower others to? 

After acknowledging the impact that certain words have had on me, mentioning the one phrase above, I aspire to say more than just talk.  I hope that my words- whether spoken or written- can make a difference in someone’s day.  That my words can impact another or, perhaps, inspire them. 

I truly believe that people come into your life for a reason- friends, mentors, loved ones.  We tend to believe the notion that their actions are what guides us through life; however, I disagree.  Sometimes it’s their words that really touch us and make us who we are.  Their encouraging words and phrases eliciting our confidence reveal the love and support that we need to become more certain of ourselves.  These words help us believe in ourselves the way they do. 

 

unsent love letter mix tape: track 7   3 comments

The post I wrote on Sunday, October 10th will explain the ideas behind the Unsent Love Letter Mix Tape series, and if it still doesn’t make sense to you, well then, at least it makes sense to me.  The writer.  The blogger.  The girl behind the computer.  Call me what you will but these are my letters.  Love Letters.  Some will be traditional love letters and some will be love letters of another sort.  These are my love letters to those that I love…or once loved…or will one day love.  Let me point out that my plan is not to send these letters, but to write them as though I was sending them. 

Track 7 is written to my Mom & Dad.  After talking to both on the phone this evening, I found myself defending my choice to follow my dreams, follow my heart against their lack of support and conflicting viewpoint.  The two people who I seek support, encouragement, and guidance from the most were trying to discourage me.  To say I’m upset is an understatement.  I don’t know how I feel.  Let down, perhaps?  Anyways, it is because I’m not sure if/when I will talk to them next that I write this love letter, because I do love them I’m just not sure if I like them much right now.

 

 

 

Dear Mom & Dad,

I am writing this letter to you because I love you.  If I didn’t then I wouldn’t take the time to write and let you know how I feel, hoping that we find some common ground and understanding.  See, in speaking to you both this evening- separately, I found myself upset listening to your ‘speeches’ and speaking up passionately to defend myself and the choices that I’m making. 

I do need to (again) point out that I understand and appreciate the points you made during our discussions and as I said to both of you separately, all of these are things that I have taken into consideration multiple times.  However, my passion for this line of work and the joy I get from it override each and every reason you gave me.  I guess I just thought that you finally understood how dedicated I am to all things that align with me pursuing my passions and dreams.  I thought that I had your  support.  I thought you wanted me to be happy.  I guess I thought wrong.

I got off the phone with frustration steaming through my veins, and it upsets me more that you have no idea how much your words affected me.  Did I take what you were saying the wrong way?  Was that your way of saying “I believe in you”, “I support you”, and “Go get ’em, Tiger”? Yeah, I didn’t think so.

You are my parents.  Your opinion means the world to me, and knowing that you do believe and support me are truly what I need the most in this take chances, carpe diem world of slamming doors and negativity.

I’ve lived in Chicago for two years now and you know this has been the biggest struggle of my life.  But what I realized tonight is, you don’t know just how rough the struggle has been for me, do you?  While you’ve been by my side, you have not worn my shoes.  You have not felt what I’ve felt, nor have you felt completely empty- feeling nothing at all- for as many days I have.  You will never understand how I’ve struggled.

You have never worn my shoes and you never will.  You will never be an anxiety-ridden twenty-seven year old female who moves into a strange new city for a job that turns out to be exactly the opposite of what she anticipated it being.  You will never know what it’s like to feel alone in a place filled with millions of people.  You will never see the things that I’ve seen nor hear what I’ve heard.  You will never feel what I’ve felt, and haven’t felt. 

You have never worn my shoes, the shoes of a single women that is forced to provide herself with the love and support that a significant other is meant to give.  You’ve been with one another since you were teenagers and therefore you do not know what it’s like to wake up feeling lonely and know that the same thing is going to happen again tomorrow unless a miracle finally happens. 

You have never worn the shoes on a broken-hearted soul.  You do not know what it’s like to be surrounded by millions of people and still pine for someone who you may never see again.  You will never wear these shoes, and it doesn’t seem like you’ll ever understand that I do wear these worn-out shoes.

You have never worn the shoes of a dreamer.  You do not know what it’s like to feel unfilled until you explore your passions and dreams.  There’s always a dream, and therefore a dreamer’s mileage is infinite.

You do not know what it’s like to question who you are; question where you belong; nor question if you belong anywhere.  You may never wear my shoes, but as my parents I hope that you can understand the shoes that I wear every day.  I wish you could understand what I need from you.  

Love,

Kristen

Song of the Moment: Brave by Idina Menzel

loving myself one day at a time   3 comments

Good morning!  I had an A.MAY.ZING. opportunity to write a post of The Beauty Message Challenge today and would like to share it here on my blog as well.  I encourage you to visit the site for yourself, but here is the piece I wrote.  This is a reflection of the journey I’ve been on for years to accept & love myself for who I am.  All I can tell you is that it’s been a day-to-day process and I’m still getting on my way. 

 

When I was twenty-years, my mom wisely instructed me, “You cannot expect someone to love you until you love yourself.”  Like any naïve girl at that age, I rolled my eyes thinking about the boy that I was in love with at that time: When he loves me (too), then I’ll start loving myself.
Seven years later I roll my eyes at that thought, acknowledging what a fool I was.  Mom, you were right and I only wish I realized that sooner.  

This is a photo of me when I was a little girl who was not yet scarred by the world and the misconception of what it means to be beautifulUnfortunately that happened a few years later and began a long journey of struggle.  Enter Middle School: When the term ‘friend’ quickly changed to ‘frienemy’ and the word ‘jealousy’ was most likely used by mothers in an attempt to explain why the girls in the class were being…well…mean.  “They’re just jealous because you’re pretty, nice, and successful.”  I heard it over and over again when I’d come home from school wondering another one of my ‘friends’ had turned on me and was now sitting with those other girls, wearing make-up, and dressing a little….slutty. 

Without an older sister and struggling to figure out who my true friends were, I found myself wondering if I had to change too.  This was also the time in our lives when boyfriends began entering our adolescent lives.  Without one myself, I fell into the trap of thinking, “If I was prettier, would I have a boyfriend too?” 

I only wish I knew then what I know now.  As strong and independent as I am, I’m ashamed to admit that I’ve spent too much of my life believing that being beautiful focuses on our looks, based on our perceptions and/or society’s standards.  I agree with most of the previous bloggers in supporting that we aspire to feel beautiful.  But how do we achieve that?  My friend brought up an interesting concept on her blog this week, and now I share it with you: “…how do you undo that damage?  How do you look in the mirror after 28 years of not liking what you see and say ‘yes, this is beautiful’?”

As difficult as it is for me to admit, I write from the viewpoint of someone who suffered from eating disorders and negative body image since my awkward teen years began.  There was a time in my life- longer than I’d like to admit- that I had a hard time looking at myself in the mirror, especially without make-up on! 

 But as they say, time heals all wounds.  This is a recent photo of me with my friend’s daughter, Hazel.  Since she entered my life two years ago, I found myself understanding the truth of beauty.  This little two-year old showed me the beauty that lies within me.    

My hope is that Hazel is able to bypass all the struggles and see this truth long before I saw it.  It’s there, Hazel.  I promise you.  Sometimes you may have to clear your weary eyes to see it, but the beauty is always there- around us, and within us. 

Earlier today I looked at myself in a full length mirror, with absolutely no make-up and my hair pulled back in pigtail braids.  Then, a few short hours later, I indulged in some banana & chocolate pancakes.  I say this because neither things are ones I would not have done in the past nor would imagine ever doing.  This is how I know that I’m closer to loving myself.   

Loving yourself is a day-to-day endeavor.  It’s a struggle but achievable.  It takes strength and courage, but more importantly it takes belief and determination.  If you believe you can love yourself- fully and completely- and strive to make that happen, then you will.  Take it one day at a time and one day you’ll know you’re there.  And when you get there, you’ll look back and know that each and every struggle was worth it and brought you to this day.  Now that’s beautiful. 

 “The kind of beauty I want most is the hard-to-get kind that comes from within-strength, courage, dignity.”
~ Ruby Dee