Archive for 2007

Losing sleep…

September 19th, 2007 | Josie

Insomnia is a gross feeder.  It will nourish itself on any kind of thinking, includingthinking about not thinking.  ~Clifton Fadiman

I am laying in bed again, shadows dancing behind the curtains and across my walls. I have counted forwards, backwards, in Spanish, Hungarian, and in German. I have tried yoga, meditation, relaxation, and even pills. No matter what I seem to do, if it is dark out, my mind is racing. It does not seem to matter to my mind that my body lives in a world ruled by the daytime, it is throughly focused on more nocturnal activities.Sometimes I talk to God when I am lying here alone in bed. Oft times, actually, I just talk to myself, my conversations focused on me and remaining almost entirely in my own head. I compose letters that will never be put on paper. I tell tell my mother how much I love her, even though sometimes I forget to act like it. I rant at Addam for hurting me, for taking part of me and ruining it. I scream at myself for the things I have done wrong and express my disappointment at all of the things that I could have done better. Once in a while, I even praise myself.There is something about the night that makes me feel most alive. All of my best work has been done long after the sun has said its good-night, and most of my most inspiring thoughts have come to me long after respectable girls have gone to bed. I am most in-tune with myself when the world is asleep. Is that because I am scared to be who I really am when other people are awake to see? I don’t know the answer to that. Maybe I will ponder it as I lay here, staring at the ceiling, again…

Points in between…

September 16th, 2007 | Josie

Just because everything is different doesn’t mean anything has changed.~Irene Peter

My first thought on coming back to school was that everyone had changed so much. This is definitely not the same place and these are not the same people that I left only one short year ago, naive and eager to strike out on my own in the big wide world. Coming back to the little pond, I feel a little out of place, as though nothing in my life quite fits any more. Its not so much that I feel like a fish out of water as that I feel like one that has outgrown its tank.It has taken me almost a month, a month of stress and anxiety over the unstable state of affairs around me, to finally realize that it wasn’t the people and places here in this small corner of the world that had changed so much as it was myself that has been altered a great deal. I feel cramped by my surroundings and uncomfortable with many of the people that I once called my dearest friends. I find myself yearning for something more, not really sure of what that more is, but knowing that I am not finding it here.I can’t really pinpoint the exact moment of “change.” So many of my experiences this past year have allowed me, and in many cases, forced me, to finally grow up. Even though I still have no idea where in the world I will be in a year, in five years, I have finally chosen a path that I want to follow. Whether that path will lead me to Italy or to Iraq, I don’t yet know, all I can do is put one foot in front of the other and go where my heart leads. Here I am, 20 years old and at the start of my adult life, more ready than I have ever been to leap into the unknown, and i find myself re-immersed in a world where life is still one of carefree indecision. There is much to be said for the life of a college student; with little more to worry about than grades and social circles, many students have more time on their hands than they know what to do with. Only a year ago I relished that “freedom.” It is amazing what one year can do. Now the self-same activities and lack of necessary routine that I once found liberating feel stifling. I am no longer interested in leaving all of my aspirations, all of my hopes and dreams, for another day. I am not content to live lackadaisically and without purpose.Each day I find myself at odds with my current “college” life. I am not able to have any sort of meaningful conversation with friends I used to consider my confidants. I just can’t bring myself to commiserate with them over silly trivialities when there are so many larger problems in the world, problems I am just itching to tackle with both hands and all of my heart and soul.Even though there are many things that I missed about “home” while I was away, I find that now that I am here all I can do is flounder through a life that is no longer familiar to me or seems to suit me in the least.

Hate…

August 10th, 2007 | Josie

Hating people is like burning down your own house to get rid of a rat.  ~Henry Emerson Fosdick

Or, in our case, a bat. I never fail to be astounded by the lengths that some people will go to in order to destroy the lives of other people. Amid all of the hustle and bustle, the to-and-fro motion I seem to be constantly enjoying as I fly across the ocean and drive from one end of the state to the other, we get a law suit thrown on top of us, too.

My parents recently moved across the state, following my mom’s new job. Now, all of that isn’t really my business since I don’t live with them anymore and I haven’t lived with them for two years, but they are my family, so of course I help out. What kind of daughter would I be if I didn’t? The people that bought their home are nightmares incarnate, driving us out of our home a week before they had previously agreed on, calling my parents names, treating them like so much scum. My parents have bent over backwards to placate them, but none of that seemed to matter. As we drove away from the home that I lived in longer than I have ever lived anywhere else in my life, a whopping five years, all I could think was “good ridance.” Although the buyers’ negative attitude had made the moving out process hectic and wearing, at least we would no longer have to deal with them.

That sort of thinking proved to be overly optomistic. Since my parents departure a month ago, the buyers have peppered them with demands and complaints, culminating in a potential law suit against my parents for the presence of bats in the home. The claim is that my parents knew about the bats and hid them, but in the five years that I lived with my family in that home, I saw a grand total of two bats. The thing that is so ludicrous about the allegation is that my parents raised four girls in that house. If anyone would have freaked out about bats, it would have been my sisters and I. The last time I saw a bat, my cat had caught it and brought in the house. When he came trotting towards me to show me his prize, I flew in to the bathroom, screaming like a banshee. I proceeded to lock the door and hide in the bathtub for the better part of 10 minutes. Does that really sound like a person that would have been content to live amidst a bat infestation for five years? Not bloody likely!

The thing is that when this goes to court, I am not worried that my parents will lose. They have a solid case and a million and two character witnesses to atest to the fact that they are good people not likely to scam anyone. What upsets me the most about this ordeal is the testament to the kind of people that live in this world. There are people that would try to ruin a family, destroying their memories of a home that they loved, simplely for personal gain. It breaks my heart that people can be that petty. All we wanted was to leave our home knowing that they people who bought it would love it as much as we did. Instead, we have had nothing but turmoil. I just pray that once all of this is over, we can get back to our lives and start over, like we have done countless times before.

Home is where the heart is…

July 11th, 2007 | Josie

Where we love is home,Home that our feet may leave, but not our hearts.~Oliver Wendell Holmes

I have spent the past 20 years moving from house to house, city to city, and, more recently, country to country. People assume that I must have hated growing up this way, that it must have been hard never having a real “home.” The thing is that I never once in my childhood considered myself to being missing out on the home experience. Every time we moved, I felt at home within days of moving into the new house. I learned at an early age that, for me at least, the old adage holds true: “home is where the heart is.” Growing up, home was always where my family was, wherever that was. Even now that I am grown and no longer living with my family, home to me is where I keep the things most precious to me: pictures of my sisters, trinkets from my mom, memories of growing up. I can also feel at home in more than one place. Part of my heart will always be at home in the house that my parents live in, even if I have never really lived there myself. Other parts of me will feel at home in the apartment that I currently live in, while still other parts belong exclusively to the places I love best, residing with the people I love most in this world.My return to the U.S. has been an interesting one, one marked by moving. Not only have I moved back, but I began the hunt for an apartment almost immediately. On top of my own imminent relocation is the fact that my parents and sisters are moving as well. The last week and a half has been a flurry of boxes and packing and moving trucks. It has been both stressful and convenient to move at the same time as my parents. Stressful in the fact that there is much to separated between my things and theirs and that we have to move their things in one direction and mine in another, but also nice in that there are things that I need that will not go well in their new house, or that they need to replace anyways.I have always thought of moving and packing as a chance to reorganize and cleanse. When you move, all of the clutter and mess gets weeded out, thrown away, and a newly unpacked room is pristine and perfect. I am not always a terribly neat person, as anyone that has ever lived with me for any length of time can attest to. I don’t like to do the dishes, and I am a firm believer that, contrary to popular belief, your bedroom floor can, in fact, serve double duty as a closet. Despite that, I like to live in clean spaces every once in a while, and I have spent my life rearranging my room entirely every couple of months, just to feel like things have changed. I think that I thrive on that change. It energizes me in a way that nothing else really can, much to the frustration of my college roommate when I informed her at eleven o’clock at night that I had to move the room around immediately. New places and new ways of looking at things make me feel most alive.

Mommy’s girl…

June 13th, 2007 | Josie

A daughter is a little girl who grows up to be a friend.  ~Author Unknown

As old as we get, there is always that time of the day that we wish we were five again, just so we could curl up in our mother’s lap and not worry about the world for a little while. The older we get, the less we have that opportunity. Our mother goes from mommy to friend, in a transition that often seems inexplicable.

Growing up, I raged against my mother from time to time. I resented her authority, that she felt she wshould be able to tell me what to do. Even when I knew that she was right, I would rebel against her advise. I often acused my mom of trying to turn me into “just a little her.” While it is true that I share many qualities with my mother (most admirable traits mixed in with one or two bad habits), I can now see that my mom never wanted me to be her. She wanted only for me to be the best me that I could be. She is, of course, disappointed when I don’t live up to my own standards, when I don’t “practice what I preach,” but she has never once stopped loving me.

She has been my best friend, and my worst critic. Sometimes, she is both at once. She is there for you when you fall, scolding you when you need it, and hugging you always. She is the mirror that you look to for guidence, the one person that you most want to impress. We are the reflections of our mother’s love, always.

Time is slipping away…

June 12th, 2007 | Josie

Sometimes I feel that life is passing me by, not slowly either. It’s passing, yet I’m the one who’s doing all the moving.  ~Martin Amis

Time is nothing if not fickle. When we want it to speed up, say during a boring lecture, the minutes slow to hours. When we want it to slow down, give us time to enjoy what we have while we have it, it flashes by in the blink of an eye. Time is spiteful.

Right now I feel as though I am clinging to time, paying and hoping that it will slow down enough to let me savor these last few weeks with Leo. I just wish that I had more time. More time to laugh, more time to cuddle, more time to show him how much I care about him. What can I do? Why did I have to fall so maddeningly in love with someone that is so oblivious to how I feel, so scared of the emotion that he denies that it exists? The one time that I fall for someone kind, someone good, there is no time to nurture it. I just don’t know what to do.

I know that this is not going to be easy, that it is going to be down right impossible, but what can I do at this point but pray and try to make it work. I am far to deep in to just let go and not be hurt. How do I take back my heart, when all of me knows that it has been his since the start?

Falling hard…

May 8th, 2007 | Josie

The most important things are the hardest to say, because words diminish them.  ~Stephen King

Why is it always the things that we feel most strongly that we cannot seem to find a way to express? I just don’t know how to put into words the emotions in my heart right now, and that in itself is heartbreaking, because all I want to do is shout from the rooftops how happy I am. I just don’t know how.

Being…

April 23rd, 2007 | Josie

“Never a lip is curved with pain That can’t be kissed into smile again.” ~Brete Harte

Having someone to hold you when you cry, to care about you, can make all of the difference in the world. Life is too short to let your heart freeze over. Sometimes you have to open up to the possibility of heart break in order to feel everything else.Happiness is a state of the heart and mind in synch.

When thunder rolls through my life…

April 21st, 2007 | Josie

The past is our definition.  We may strive, with good reason, to escape it, or to escape what is bad in it, but we will escape it only by adding something better to it.  ~Wendell Berry

As hard as we try, at times there is no escaping the things that have happened to us. What is past is past, but it is also irreversible.

Usually, I try not to think about the past, expecially the bad things that have happened in it, but the funny thing about the past is that it has a way of sneeking up on us when we least expect it and effecting our present in a very substantial way. How do you explain to someone you care about why you are crying for no apparent reason. All they can do is hold you in bewilderment while you cry, unable to explain the reason. The reason makes no sense to them, can never make sense to them, really, because they were not there, in that time and place.

Part of you needs to explain, wants to tell them, and the other part wants desperately to forget that it ever happened. You don’t want to burden them with the terrors of your history, partly in fear that they will back away. You are tainted, and you cannot forget, can never forget. It is part of you, it pains you. Sometimes, it is you.

Please understand, I am not what I seem to be. I am hurting, but that does not mean that I am all hurt. I can be happy, and I can try to love and live and learn from the mistakes and tragedies of my past, but I need help, I need to be loved despite the issues I embody. I need the life to be breathed back into me. I need to cope with the past and embrace the future. I need to live.

“When thunder rolls through my life, will you be able to weather the storm?”

Screaming…

April 19th, 2007 | Josie

Sometimes I feel that life is passing me by, and not slowly either.  It’s passing, yet I’m the one who’s doing all the moving.  ~Martin Amis

There are days when it seems like the world decides to open up and spit out all the crap it has been waiting to dump on you, all at once. Today is one of those days. No particular reason, I am just really high strung. I cried on the phone with Leo for no good reason, yelled at my roomates, ate to much to make myself feel better, which of course only made me feel worse.It just that all of the stress from the past few weeks had been building and building, and I think that I am finally at my breaking point. I don’t know where I am going to live next year, or worse, how I am going to pay the rent. Then there is where the hell I am going to be in a year. I just don’t know. Why is everything hitting me like this all at once?