Rude awakenings

Do you know what’s worse than heartbreak?
you’re in a room, surrounded by everyone you trust in your life.
Beaming from ear to ear, you can’t believe how lucky you are, having these people in your life.
Suddenly, the room whirls, and everyone is paired up, doing trust falls. You join them, feeling completely safe in everyone’s arms, knowing they will catch you without a second’s hesitation.
You switch partners, and they grin. “You ready? You trust me right?” They say with a grin.
You nod, laughing, and turn around, throw your arms out wide, surrounded by the sounds & laughter of everyone important in your life, and fall.
And fall,
And fall,
And fall.
With a jolt, you open your eyes, expecting your partner to be standing above you, but they’re nowhere to be seen.
You find them a few feet away, in conversation with others, and despite everything you try, they can’t, or won’t, hear you, as if you were never there in the first place, as if nothing had happened.
You’re left, confused and invisible, in a room that had once felt like the safest place in the world.
Trust-breaks are the rudest of awakenings.

I am.


I am tired.
I have been many things:
or nothing at all.

I am many things.
a human being.

But for now, I am tired.
I am tired of being a bandage.
I am tired of being unsure.
I am tired of my lack of confidence.
I am tired of my blindness.
I am tired of being let down.
I am tired of letting others down.
I am tired of being the worrier.
I am tired of learning the hard way.
I am tired of being proven wrong.
I am tired.

I wish I could have confidence.
I wish I could be a permanent solution.
I wish I could.

but for now, I am tired.

No Going Back

My mother has always been the bearer of bad news.
but no matter how dark the news is, she bears it with such grace and love, 
the first thought to push through the screaming and wailing in my mind is

“I love you.”

So when I heard my mother bear news with sadness that had latched onto her very bones, 
I broke. I wept. 
She stood, with tears in her eyes, at more funerals than I can number on both of my hands, 
but never let a tear fall. 
So when I heard her, 1,209 miles away, gasp for air in between sobs,
I knew it was different. 
She was different. 
I was different. 
Our family was changing. 
And there was no going back.

What If

staying awake tears me apart because my thoughts run so rampant they can’t be stopped.
Around every corner, in every second, something draws me back to that moment, forcing me to think, “what If?” Making me drown in it, be consumed by it.
It’s funny how two syllables can cause so much heartache.
But falling asleep is worse- it’s like a slow, suffocating, death that you can feel creep into your bones, one dream at a time. 

All I ask is to have one night where I get peace.


My edges are rough, lined with scars and wounds from past battles, whether it was a fight with the coffee table at midnight, or the wall of my bedroom after a bad day.

Each crack in my surface allows a glimpse into my life with you.
The scar above my left eye is the only remnant of that summer baseball game- your first one.
I remember you crying when that stray ball hit me in the face.
I think you cried more than I did.

Or the knick on my knee from when we fell off the top bunk.
I was so mad at you, and you wouldn’t let go, your grip on my shirt like a vice, so over we went, down we tumbled.
Mom was so angry.
I was so sorry.
I wish I could take it all back.

The knuckles on my right hand forever bear your name, although you don’t know it. The RA next door wasn’t too happy when I woke her up at 1am, taking my frustration out on the wall we shared.
but you made me so mad.
It was the first time we were away from each other for over a week.
What a way to fight.

The cracks have gotten more visible as time wore on, the fissures in my skin deeper as i get older, and you drift away.
It’s like you’re pulling me to pieces.
More marks have joined my old ones from childhood, but like whiskey, they burn and distort my thoughts, getting stronger as time goes by.

You can’t possibly know this, since the radio silence has stretched to seven months.
I wonder if you’ve counted the days, like I have.
It might just be an older sister thing, but I have.
January 9, 2013. Seven months, 3 days.

I’ve heard from you twice since then, both brief, as if I was a tedious household chore.
I hope you remember the scars.

Paint Chips

Painting your room is a more difficult decision than it’s typically portrayed.
In real life, you don’t have that one blue vase of your grandmother’s that is the perfect combination of robin’s egg blue and teal.
What you have is a 10-by-12 square with a black bookshelf from Target and a plain bed frame with brown sheets, with the occasional wine bottle set on the windowsill amongst the tangled nest of Christmas lights you found on a Home Depot clearance rack. So, unless you want to match your paint to “Lost Angel Wine Bottle” Green, or “Arrogant Bastard Ale” Brown…You have to make the decision yourself.
You have one shot- a single, one-gallon can of Behr Indoor/Outdoor paint, to change the entire feel of your bedroom (hopefully) permanently. Let’s be honest. If painting were easy, then it’d be more like the Valspar chameleon commercials, but it’s not.
One color. One can. One shot.
Basically, it’s you versus your future comfort and happiness in the Hunger Games arena that is disguised as your tiny bedroom. This is how you find yourself with a pile of paint chips, matching them to the closest pure white thing you can find: hotel bed sheets, notebook paper, that one dress in your closet that is miraculously sans-coffee stains- anything but the heinous “Oh God, is this actually what you think WHITE looks like?!” shade of your current bedroom walls.
However, you conquer that gauntlet. You find the perfect, warm shade of gold that just sends warm, fuzzy feelings through your body- your room gets painted in an evening with the help of “Chicago,” a rotating fan, and a beautifully freeing lack of clothing (hey, if you can’t afford Throw Away Clothes…).
One issue: The name. Something as simple as the name given to a color can invoke unsightly tears and an inner emotional breakdown.
What is it about names? The simple, multi-syllobic strings of consonants and vowels that are assigned a 3×3 inch of paper, a town name, an address. But something hits the sweet spot about those ridiculous names assigned to paint chips.
“princess Ivory” “Rare Earth” “Bittersweet Chocolate.”

I’ve resolved to never be a paint chip.
Why would I want to be a scrap, an example of the full experience?
A paint chip isn’t the real thing, it’s a sampling of the actual product, the full experience of the color. Why would I want to be an example of life? A “Coming Soon to a Life Experience Near You!”
Why should we look at our life day by day, minute by minute, instead of looking at everything, all at once?
LIVE moment by moment, but plan for the future as well. Figure out your game plan for the next month, 6 months, 2 years, who-gives-a-fuck-5-year-plan?
That trip to Australia? Plan it, but don’t you dare miss going out with your friends on a Friday night in the name of “saving money.” Money will be made and spent. That’s why it’s there. If you don’t spend the money on that drink, you’ll probably end up eating it away in the form of a Burger King hamburger, and let’s be honest, that drink would be much more satisfying that that damn burger.
Start thinking about where you want to move after school, grad school, or even 2 years from now, just for the hell of it.
The world is huge, unexplored for many, and it’s just waiting for your two puny, human sized eyeballs to tear it wide open, to experience it for the first time.
See it. Live it. Experience it. Throw your fears out the window and just GO.
Don’t be like paint chips.
When compared to the stark white of the hotel bed sheets, of course, they look colorful and interesting. Bleach will make any world look colorful. That’s the terror and beauty of technology. You can be tricked into thinking you’re actually living, when you’re not.
A dear friend slapped me in the face (lovingly) with this truth a few weeks ago, and I cannot be more grateful.
What’s the use in exploring the world, if you never leave the start line in the first place?
Go out on a limb.
Race head first around the bend.
Forget your knee pads when you go rollerblading.
Drink just ONE drink too much.
Enjoy living.
Enjoy the scars, memories, headaches, and callouses you get from experiences that can never be forgotten.
Live life to the fullest. Experience the full spectrum of color.
Don’t be a paint chip.
Don’t be a sampling of what life has to offer.
Don’t be content with a smaller version.
Don’t be a paint chip.


The living see through sepia-toned glass. Only a few are blessed with the sparkling, blindingly clear sight that allows them to see the mirage of patterns that swirl through the air.
I hope you are.
-not, “I hope you are one of them.” But simply, I hope you ARE, for if you understand, if you are truly aware of BEING, you can appreciate the patterns that entwine themselves around each movement in time, each syllable that falls from your lips.
I don’t care whether you see the patterns or merely possess knowledge of them, because it’s what you DO with that knowledge that entrances me.
let yourself go, lose yourself in the slipstream of consciousness to float away into the star crossed pattern that has woven itself into symphonies and sonnets.
Get lost in the stark, sharp landscape that is hidden within the beat of a drum and a guitar, whether it’s in your room alone or drunk in a crowded bar, get lost.
When the shadowed, black tendrils of uncertainty have trapped you in a corner, call for me and I will gladly throw myself in with you, facing the monsters together, creating a pattern of light and love all our own.
Hold on fast to the burning, blazing, vibrating streaks that pierce your heart when you fall in love for the first time. The love that engulfs you and catches you by surprise. The out of body experience that both splits your heart in pieces and gives you strength beyond reason.
When the soft and warm hues of home wrap themselves around you, tuck that scrap into your back pocket, to pull out on a rainy day when you find yourself cold and alone.
Promise me to never let go of the deep vividness of passion slip through your fingers- the flash of red in my shirt that night, the burning yellow from the candle we lit when the power went out, the cold shine of the ice on the power lines outside, keep them blazing for the world to see to let them know you’re mine.
And if I should go and another takes my place, let that palate fade with time, muted to the blue of the dress I was wearing when we first met, the grey flecks in your eyes, the pale first green of spring when you first held my hand, the soft pink you make appear on my cheeks when you smile at me…
The swirls and whirls of love, the gouges and gashes of loss, the cutting bricks of betrayal and revenge, the budding rays of life & quiet lines of death surrounding us, filling us each day, live by them.
I know you said you weren’t good with words, but I don’t care.
Trace the rays across my face with your eyes, follow the twits and turns of life with your fingertips onto skin, make me your canvas, paint on me what you will, and I will help change it, mold it into something more unique than either of us, for that’s what life is- take what you get, create and build, love and live, find that missing piece, your muse and partner, best friend and confidant, lover and bodyguard.
Find them, know them, and weave their pattern together with your own.