Wednesday, July 29, 2015


This year I haven't dreaded my birthday like I have in years past. Today I will celebrate my health, eat yummy food with wonderful people, and take a birthday nap (it's tradition!) Then I might follow up all of that with a wind-down birthday bubble bath and a glass of wine. Cheers to another year in the books. I have big things planned for my 28th year on this earth. I'm hopeful and excited to see where I'm headed next.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015


there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I'm too tough for him,
I say, stay in there, I'm not going
to let anybody see
there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I pour whiskey on him and inhale
cigarette smoke
and the whores and the bartenders
and the grocery clerks
never know that
in there.

there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I'm too tough for him,
I say,
stay down, do you want to mess
me up?
you want to screw up the
you want to blow my book sales in
there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I'm too clever, I only let him out
at night sometimes
when everybody's asleep.
I say, I know that you're there,
so don't be
then I put him back,
but he's singing a little
in there, I haven't quite let him
and we sleep together like
with our
secret pact
and it's nice enough to
make a man
weep, but I don't
weep, do

Charles Bukowski

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

If I told myself the things I tell my best friend, I would say...

...because I'm freaking trying, and trying is enough. Perfection isn't ideal, and turns out, some of my quirks make me interesting. Some of my stories are worth telling and there are people out there who want to hear them. So I'm going to stop comparing my life as it is right now to the life I thought I'd be living. This is the one I was supposed to be living all along.
...and I would stop using the terms "train wreck" and "fatty mcfatterson" and "basket case" when jokingly referring to myself, because I'm not actually joking when I use them, and those terms do not encompass who I actually am.  They keep people at a distance from the real substance of who I am and what I'm experiencing. They keep me from being authentic, which in turn, keeps me from connecting to the people around me.

And if you know anything about depression, that's when it wins-- when you don't get out of bed and you turn down dates and you skip dinner with your girls because you're tired and maybe you don't want them to know that you haven't showered in two days and you don't plan to tomorrow either. I need community. I need that push. I need to stop giving my brain the dynamite it needs to slowly blast away at my identity while I sit on my couch and eat my feelings.
I really hate it when my best friend downs herself. She does this a lot, and she's been really fighting those demons. When we talk on the phone and she tells me she hates the way she looks and that she is frustrated and feels like a bad mother and wife because the chores aren't done and the baby has cheerios in her hair or whatever, I just want to shake her and tell her that I see her. I really see her. And she's trying. And she's more than those things she thinks about herself. And she is enough.

She is so much more than that, but it's a decent place for us all to start.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015


Wearing:  Jorts. If you see me at any point this summer, I will be in cut-off jean shorts. You know, the kind people create in their kitchens from old pants that have holes in them or something? Yeah that kind. It's sweltering hot in the Carolinas this year, so... Sorry not sorry.

Watching:  Masterchef and Orange is the New Black. Also re-watching all the episodes of Daria, because she's my spirit animal.

Reading:  Quite a bit of poetry. Also about to start Red Letter Revolution and Trendology.

Wanting:  Tater tots, mostly. I'm on week four of Weight Watchers and have lost 15.8 pounds... really proud and excited to keep losing! But oh do I miss fried food.

Listening:  Some recent favorites include Dessa - "Call Off Your Ghost", Florence + the Machine - "Various Storms and Saints", and Beth Orton - "Dawn Chorus"

Creating:  I drew a sketch of some scissors the other day. Also have been journaling and including some collage in the new journal. Does that count?

Battling:  Exhaustion. Work is slammed all summer long and I'm just trying to get it all done and still take some time next week with my family at the beach. Hopefully I'll be able to relax.

Eating:  Lots of fresh produce! I love summer. Also eating a ton of shrimp and salmon. Excited for some crab legs next week!

Drinking:  Not enough alcohol, just enough water. Trying to stay hydrated in this summer heat.

Loving:  Seeing my timeline turn all rainbow-colored in support of the SCOTUS ruling affirming marriage equality. There were some haters, but the people who stepped out in support far outnumbered those noisy gongs.

Looking forward to:  Putting my butt in the sand and sleeping in the sun at the beach next week. There will be ukulele playing and singing on the porch with my siblings and time for drawing and coffee in the mornings with my mother and evening bike rides with my sister. Maybe I will get my brother to do a sketchbook collaboration with me, since we are both artists but our styles are so different. It feels nice to look forward to something. I'm counting down the minutes.

Friday, June 26, 2015

My 84-year-old toddler is dying

When my grandmother turned 84, my mother put this note on her mirror. I felt bad, because I had some kind of freak pneumonia and couldn't go see her that day. I called. She didn't remember it was her birthday. She didn't remember who had called and who hadn't. I dropped my guilt and went on with my day. That was in November.

My brother and I went to see her yesterday. She was all tucked into bed, her wheelchair sat empty in the corner. I saw that sign on her mirror and realized we probably wouldn't be making one that said 85 on it. We're in the home stretch now. Soon there will be no more mushy, one-color meals and there will be no more matching of socks. There will be no more bringing her fresh tubes of Biotene toothpaste. In lieu of motherhood, I've thrown myself into taking care of her while my cousins were all busy with their babies.

Soon I will no longer be her caretaker. I will only be her granddaughter.

I wore lipstick and covered my tattoos as not to give her an unnecessary heart attack and speed along the process. She was pleasant, though uncomfortable and confused. Before we left, I kissed her on her forehead and told her not to party too hard. Her smile curled upwards as she chuckled. That may be my final memory of my grandmother. For her sake, I hope it is.