Like, a lot of thoughts.
And it’s not like these thoughts have been in some big thought-crescendo where I keep gradually having more and more thoughts each day and now here I am comfortably with a lot of thoughts.
No, it’s more like that moment when you’re pouring the mac and cheese from the pot into the slightly too small tupperware container and all of the mac and cheese is sticking to the pot. There are literally two macaronis laying pathetically on the bottom of the container so you give the pot a thump thump. All of a sudden there it is. Exactly what you wanted but not in the way that you wanted it. Bright orange enriched grain product everywhere. A good 60% has landed in the tupperware, where it is supposed to go. But the other 40% has spilled out over the top and onto the counter, and onto the floor, and of course somehow down under the coils of the stovetop because that is the most inconvenient place for them to be.
So here I am with 60% of my thoughts stowed away neatly in my head (folded AND pressed!) and 40% spilling out uncontrollably, uncomfortably, onto everything.
So my solution is to write, I guess
1) On blogs: so over? I kept a blog pretty regularly from the 2003-2010. Blogs are different from diaries. Diaries no on reads.You can say anything, you can be your worst self. A blog must be proper, must be politically correct (2003 Kelly did you hear that?!) because the WORLD sees them. Or do they? I basically have the attention span of a teaspoon these days. I probably couldn’t read someone’s blog if my life depended on it. So who’s to say you can’t be perfectly candid on an online blog, it is very likely that it will be just as private as a diary. Just don’t say mean things about your mom because just the fact that she genuinely loves you means that she will genuinely want to read your blog. So why post a blog publicly at all? What is the driving factor behind my need to press publish and then post a link to it on facebook? Maybe I can ponder that with all my new thoughts and come up with an answer for you. Perhaps I could chalk it up to some grandiose notions of being seen, being heard, the potential of an audience that appeals to the blogger, the 24 year old girl with mac n cheese brains.
2) On the new development of all my thoughts: Cycling hormones? New life perspective? Living by herself with only cats? Who knows. And what if I get all of my thoughts out on this one blog and then I have no more thoughts anymore, how tragic. Because as uncomfortable as all of the thoughts spilling over into my brain stovetop coils are, they are a welcomed presence. Because I know the opposite, have known the opposite for the past 2-3 years off and on. What keeps my thoughts muted? As if a thick blanket has been carefully thrown in such a way as to put out some sort of thought-fire in my brain. That is another great question. Perhaps the all-evil all-consuming INTERNET (capitalized for it’s inherent evilness, of course). Possibly mind-numbing netflix or interest killing imgur! Maybe it’s getting older and having those neurons in your head quit connecting like they used to. Maybe it’s having a big girl job taking care of people and putting yourself last and it’s rewarding but exhausting and it can kill those thoughts.
3) On Books Vs. TV: Why is it after 3 hours of Dexter you are melted into the couch with the motivation of a recreational drug user but after 3 hours of reading you’re walking around with a dumb smile on your face telling people about the great plot twist that just unfolded before your very eyes. I’ve been thinking about this one a lot and I think I have at least part of the answer. I think that Show requires nothing from you. Sit here. Watch this. That’s it. Show doesn’t care. It will go on whether you are making dinner or sitting entranced. It will play without you. Book, however requires some form of discipline. Sit here. Read this. sounds very similar to Sit here. Watch this, but it couldn’t be more different. Within”read this” is a myriad of other demands that starts with “imagine this” and ends with “stay here with me.” There’s almost a level of disappointment when I go to grab the pretzels and come back to my couch knowing that something relaxing and entertaining is waiting for me. I sit down and look around expectantly to my TV or my computer and am slightly disappointed when I realize it’s Book, waiting for me to pick it back up, invest in it, spend time with it, work for it. Book is demanding but gives something to you because you have given something to it.
4) On being told you are beautiful: “Don’t give a girl TOO many compliments or she will get used to it and either become cocky or not believe you anymore-it won’t be special!” How many times have I heard this advice? Well maybe not like a ton but I have heard it (and I’ve done my time with trashy girl magazines so it’s possible that I have slightly lost grip with reality.) Either way I have some thoughts on being told you’re beautiful. Ever since I was ten I began to notice (and hate) my appearance. In the fourth grade I had a rounded belly, the consequence of one-too many chimichangas, I’m sure. I saw a picture of myself (proud, with my safety patrol belt and hat) and found that I was little bigger than my friends on either side (I was taller too). Since then from unibrows to braces to pimples to freckles and back around to unibrows, I have always been slightly self conscious about something that is wrong with me. My weight has consistently been woven in and out of these insecurities. I read the “love yourself” self help books, I took matters into my own hands and waxed my eyebrows and wore the right make up and bought new clothes and lost 15 pounds. I continued to be unhappy with my appearance. By the time I got to the middle of college something inside me had died and I had no idea. I looked at myself in the mirror and picked out things I didn’t like. It was habit, routine. My inner voice would tell me that my hair was extra poofy or I had an extra ring of flesh on my stomach or that the dimples in my legs were getting bigger or that my ribs were weirdly wide for my shoulders. I would walk away from the mirror not thinking anything was wrong with that situation-completely numb to the voice in my head. On the outside I looked down on girls who fished for compliments and complained about their looks. Somewhere down the line I found out that I wasn’t entitled to discuss faults in my appearance to others. Average height, average weight, average shoe size, all parts functional, proportional face, regular teeth. I even had “good” qualities according to things I had heard from others: thick hair, long eyelashes. Sometimes I would even feel ashamed of the days that I tried a little harder (fixed my hair, wore new clothes). If I got extra long appreciative looks I immediately labeled them as intrusive and unwanted. Vowed to wear baggier shorts, bigger sweatshirts, less make up. Alone in front of my mirror I was imperfect, lacking. Out in public I was too flashy, too noticeable. Writing this all down makes me feel (and sound) definitely crazy! During the end of my junior year of college I started dating my boyfriend that I have now. He would tell me I was beautiful and I just assumed that was something boyfriends said in the beginning. But then he kept on saying it. Over and over and over again. Every single day he would look at me and say it. His face would light up and he would be so excited to tell me that I was beautiful. At first I was embarrassed, what do I say, how do I act, what do I do with my hands? Then, I would make a horribly terrible chipmunk face that would cause him to laugh and say, “well maybe not like that!” And that would be the end of the topic because I was so uncomfortable being told something that I had spent 13 years telling myself the opposite. A year and a half into our relationship I remember looking one day in the mirror and instead of seeing all my flaws I heard something in my head saying “you’re beautiful.” And it literally shocked me, like floored me. And just by the amount of shock that I felt at that statement, I realized that this problem that had lain dormant all these years was like a real issue. And of course the voice in my head that morning sounded a lot like Filip’s voice Somehow even though I never believed him when he said it to me, his voice had gotten inside my head. Because after 400 some odd days of hearing that you’re beautiful every single day, something changes in you, apparently. Soon I was believing that I looked good without make up and that I looked good in work out clothes or with food hanging out of my mouth, or when I was sick. And the weird thing was that at the same time I also began to not worry about drawing attention to myself: wearing lipstick, new clothes, even high heels! The last thing that I want someone to go away from this with (ALL YOU READERS OUT THERE) is that you somehow need a boy to tell you that you are beautiful and then you will finally believe it. Because From the time I was 14 until now (minus a year here or there). I had some sort of boy telling me that I was beautiful (another set of blog issues for another day). And I also don’t want you to think that it just takes the RIGHT boy to tell you that you are beautiful for you to believe it because that can’t be true either. I just wanted to tell my story. I know that getting older has helped and leaning into the fact that the King is enthralled with the beauty of his creation is another thing that contributed. Hearing some sort of form of “you are beautiful” for 900 days in a row is a radical experiment in the power of positive self talk. Is everything better? No. Body image is a pervasive issue that our society will deal with until the end of time, and that I will continue to struggle with it but less and less each day until I look in the mirror and the first thing I think is that I’m beautiful because the of the joy and happiness that my life has turned to with some strange combination of family and loved ones and God.
And that’s all I have to say about that