The grass IS greener on this side.

Our minds are so wonderful aren’t they? Constantly thinking, imagining, creating, dreaming. But what about when your mind turns against you. When your mind is imprisoning, stifling, killing you. I’ve struggled my whole life with the real and what my mind has led me to believe is real. How things really are and how my mind has set them up to be. When I was a child I had an aunt (my dads sister) insist to me that she was my real mom. I was frightened and had no idea why she would even say such an awful thing. As an adult I know that she has severe mental health issues but growing up my goal was to not be like my “crazy” aunt. So when I was emotional or had mood swings I just needed to get over it and deal. I didn’t have the most supportive family when it came to these issues. I don’t think they were trying to be hurtful i just think they were uninformed and had no idea how to properly handle any of my “issues.” It is so common and so unfortunate. Fortunately for my family and I, we survived. Not every family is so lucky. Then there are these people- the ones who think that if you are depressed, then you’re just not praying hard or often enough. And that is just not true. I prayed until I was blue in the face but I just could not shake whatever it was that was going on in my mind.

Finally, after battling my mind and struggling and being so irritable that my husband and I couldn’t go one day without an argument I realized it was time to seek professional help. I 100% believe in medication and therapy. I am living, walking, talking, marital bliss proof that these things works. I continue to pray every single day but I’m no longer asking God to fix me, I am thanking Him for doing it. I am beyond blessed and grateful that He gave me the courage to seek help. He placed me in a Dr’s hands who knew what she was doing and got my medication right the first time. And He has made me aware and proactive in wanting to make sure that I don’t allow the people around me to have their issues swept under the rug.

Stigma

A meeting 8 years in the making..

I started listening to Say Anything because of a shitty ex boyfriend who emotionally damaged me for years and almost ruined my marriage. The only good thing he ever did for me was introduce me to this band that would change my life. I know it sounds quite melodramatic and cliche but i can assure you, its true.

I went to my first Say Anything show at the Glasshouse back in 2006. I attended by myself and was in the front row; I was that girl- the one who knew every word to every song and loudly sang along with an ear to ear grin. At 20 years old, I was happy to have the lead singer of my favorite band (Max Bemis) shimmy and shake in front of me, who cares if i got sprayed with spit and sweat?! Since then I have attended every southern california Say Anything show but not without incident.

I was young, happy and invincible- or so i thought. Little did I know I was just young and drunk. I attended one show in LA (again by myself) where I got drunk, made friends with a random nice gentleman (who luckily was just that) and had a great time. Then as Im on the phone walking to my car I see Max and friends walking and drunken me “whispers” into my phone, “there he is, hes right in front of me, what should i do?” Needless to say I did not meet Max that night and drove the hour drive home. I made it safely. Thank God.

The next night I asked a friend to drive me to the show so I could drink and not have to worry about driving home. That was a smart decision on my part- I thought I was being responsible. Well as we are driving home we skid across four lanes and hit the center divider head on. That was the absolute scariest moment of my life. My friend had a DUI and for years our friendship was tarnished. I spent Thanksgiving in sweat pants that year not by choice but because I could barely move from being so sore from the accident.

Another show I went to I asked a different friend to drive me- he willingly did and stayed sober. I saw Max walk by on the street but was to scared to say anything (pun intended) until he had passed- and then I told my friend, “oh hey.. that was him.” I did not meet Max that night

Then there was the Ventura Warped Tour. There I was 122 miles from home..by myself, front row. I had a great time and after the show Max shook my hand but i was too dumbfounded to even speak (I dont consider this meeting Max.) After I spent the rest of the day enjoying great bands I walk to where I had parked only to find that my car had been towed. I had to wait the two+ hours for my mom to get there then we slept in her car til morning to get my car out.

I was just a 20 year old reckless, starstruck kid when i started listening to SA but its been a crazy and almost surreal adventure to grow up with the music. Sometimes I felt (like most people do with music) that he wrote those songs about my exact situation. I met Andrew (my most amazing husband who I am lucky to have, hes my partner in crime and my SA show buddy now) shortly after Max and Sherri (Eisley) were married. So obviously I can still relate and internalize all the songs. Now I’m a 28 year old woman who has a respect and admiration for an artist who has grown into a family man and so much more. Going to SA shows has introduced me to some of my other favorite bands (Manchester Orchestra, Fake Problems) and I even found the most perfect song to dance with Andrew to for our wedding vow renewal ceremony, Eisley’s ‘Kind’

So obviously at last nights show I was kind of a mess when my friend pulled me over to meet Max and take my picture with him..it wasnt at all what id hoped for (me being the cool kid with the leather jacket, “hey… sup.” head nod. and then we’d smoke a bowl, have a drink and be best friends.. hey a girl can dream!!) but I’m just happy that I met Max… finally! 🙂

Wanna get away?

We all need some r&r in our lives and after a long week at work what could be better than a calm, quiet day at the spa. However when the thought crossed my mind this week it wasn’t a realistic option seeing as how it was 10 pm on Friday night and for most of us its not something we can treat ourselves to due to time, budget or children constraints. Much to your delight, I’ve compiled some of my favorite products that will make your bathroom a room of pampering and rejuvenation. Treat yourself once in a while, you more than deserve it. 🙂

Tree Hut Shea Sugar Brazilian Nut Body Scrub (Walmart)- I obviously don’t recommend using a scrub everyday but after using this your skin will feel brand new.. literally, like baby skin; so touch-ably soft

Bliss Soapy Suds (Sephora)- I have it in the vanilla+bergamot scent, which smells so good!, and the scent stays and it keeps your skin soft even after you rinse.

Cranberry Orange Mango & Acai Berry Hand Treatment Candle (Pink Papaya)- This product is my favorite and oh so amazing! You light the candle while you take your bath then once your done and you blow the candle out the “wax” is actually a therapeutic massage oil that can be used anywhere. I use mine mainly on my neck, shoulders and back. (Its better if massaged on by someone else!) And it leaves your skin with a dewy pretty glow.

Forever Flawless Diamond Infused Facial Peel-  Use this on your clean face and watch the dead skin cells just peel away. A must have if you want to keep your skin youthful.

Neutrogena Naturals Night Cream (Target)-  My skin on face is very sensitive so this is perfect for my skin type and I even use the face wash as my everyday wash.

So go pour the bubble bath under the hot water, light some candles and take some time for yourself to unwind and relax.

relax

Hello 2014

What better way to start the new year than with a new blog post. 2013 was a great year with some great times but I like to think of it more as a growing year for myself. I didn’t experience any major life changing events however the year as a whole changed me and made me better prepared to conquer 2014. With that said here are some of my resolutions for the upcoming year:

1. Find a home church and attend weekly.

2.Start focusing more on inner beauty and confidence and less on outward appearance

3. Join a book club.

4. Take my health more seriously and make it a priority, not an option.

5. Cook dinner once a week

6. Be a hostess (instead of a guest) more often.

7. Take adventures by myself once in a while. So this one needs some explaining… Before I met Andrew I was fearless in the sense that I could and would go anywhere by myself. Shopping, concerts, festivals.. you name it, i did it. Ive become so accustomed to having someone to go everywhere with that Ive developed anxiety about attending anything by myself. I think its an almost unhealthy co-dependency so id like to take some more solo trips just to maintain my sense of adventure and independence.

8. Develop and STICK TO a budget.  (Its about time, I suppose. )

9. Make a new friend.

10. Travel to a new city.

So what are your new years resolutions? And remember, resolutions aren’t about changing who you are but embracing and enhancing your life so good luck to you all in accomplishing your goals and making your dreams become realities.

Express yourself

When given really good (or really bad) news we all react in different ways. That isn’t to say people who don’t have an overly expressive reaction care less. Recently, on a family trip to Laughlin, I won $500. I was ecstatic.. on the inside, however I didn’t jump up and down or scream or do anything over the top. My mom commented that she would’ve been yelling and I thought to myself, “Why am I not more excited?” Later I realized that I had been genuinely and completely elated I just didn’t express it the same way as my mom would. For a very long time Ive had this idea that I cant express my excitement in an outward fashion. I don’t know where this notion comes from, maybe I don’t want to be boastful; maybe I’m too concerned what others think. But really I think its that I’m a thinker. I take time to think about things and to process them. Even more recently a family member received devastating news. When my mom told me the news I didn’t cry, I didn’t hug my mom, I didn’t really react at all. I asked questions and did what i do best.. I started processing. I’m sure that its not the reaction most would give but that doesn’t mean that it didn’t have the same impact on me that it did my other family members. I’m just not good at these kind of things. The best way for me to express myself is to write it down. But know this.. I love more deeply than most and although I may look and sound fine my heart aches the same and my prayers are as constant as yours. 

I haven’t always been this way and I’ve started to see my “poker face” when it comes to dealing with emotions as a flaw but maybe its a strength. I still feel everything and am very much an emotional person but have this strange ability to keep it together when it counts. I can be strong for my family  when they need it most. I know there will come a day when I will need them to be my strength so I’m glad to be that person for them now.