Friday, November 18, 2011

Letting Go

You know, it takes the death of young people for us to really appreciate how fragile life is and how fast it can just fall through your hands.

We, as human beings, don't like to think about our mortality. We are death-denying (as we would say in my psychology classes) so we will try to do anything to make ourselves look less like we are aging. We are looking for the next miracle cream, the next procedure to make us look 10 years younger because we don't want to deal with the fact that we, in essence, are dying.

I know, it seems rather morbid to think about it, but ever since the moment you were born, you are living to die. A lot of people don't think about this very fact, and when they get to middle age, they have what is called a midlife crisis where they try to find their childhood. All because they don't want to believe that they are getting older.

I hate to break it to you folks, there is nothing you can do to stop yourself from getting older. NOTHING. You can enjoy the life that you have though while you are here. I am 21 years old, but I understand that there is nothing I can do to stop myself from getting older. I also understand that there is nothing I can do from stopping death from knocking when it's supposed to happen.

In the area of my hometown over the past few days, there have been several deaths of some very young people. A 20 year old woman was murdered. A 16 year old and an 18 year old were killed in a car accident. It has been a tragic time for those families. It's these moments where people think of how fragile life is. Everyday we toe the line between life and death. When we lie in our beds at night, we can thank our lucky stars that a car accident, or a stranger didn't take us. But if we thought that every person was out to get us, we'd never get anywhere.

I guess what I'm trying to say is, you can't deny the fact you are going to die. Someday you have to accept the fact that your life here on Earth will come to end. I accepted this fact at a young age. No, I'm not saying, "death, come at me," but I am saying, "that if tomorrow I wasn't here anymore, I'll be okay with that." I leave nothing hanging for tomorrow. When something comes up within my means, I do it. I spend time with friends, I smile a lot, and I don't let anything hold me back.

I live.

And I wouldn't want it any other way. Sometimes when you let go of those chains holding you back, your life makes all new twists and turns and you achieve things you never imagined in your wildest dreams. But it's the first step that's always the hardest. That step across a line of unknown.

But it's so worth it.

In other news:

I got my very own bottle of Felix Felicis from one of my swap partners!
Yup, this girl has some liquid luck!

  • Monday I made my first official turkey by myself, the way my mom always did and it was AMAZING! Yes, I did get my hand stuck in it when it was still frozen, but those things happen and I can laugh about it later.
  • Wednesday I had my band concert and it went really well. A couple of my lovely aunties came and it was nice seeing them (as always!)
  • Tonight I am going to a Harry Potter party because my friends rock. I can't wait for from HP drinking games and some butterbeer!

Songs For Today: 
1. Pumped Up Kicks- Foster the People
2. Night Rider's Lament- Garth Brooks
3. Clocks- Coldplay
4. Fame < Infamy- Fall Out Boy
5. Major Minus- Coldplay
6. Christmas Lights- Coldplay
7. Syndicate- The Fray
8. October- Evanescence
9. Locomotive Breath- Jethro Tull

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

My Highly Hilarious Count of What Really Happened in Chicago This Past Weekend.

And How Fast It Turned Into Such a Blah Weekend.

So, the big weekend came. I was so excited about going to Chicago again. For having driven there by myself for the first time over the summer, I realized it wasn't that much of a drive from home and it was awesome. So awesome. And my cousin Molly was coming with me this time. This was going to be the farthest out of Michigan she had ever been and the biggest city she had ever visited. It was going to be so much fun. We had been squealing over it all week since we found out that she could go.

11/11/11 hit. The luckiest day of the year. It was pretty much the opposite for me though. I remembered it was a holiday, but I didn't think about the fact that my direct deposit from work wasn't going to get there until I got up that morning. I freaked. I was depending on that check to pay for and get me to and from Chicago, pay for my stuff while there and let me live. I was livid. Everyone I talked to said that it should have been put in a day early. Was it? No, of course not. So I waited for Mindu to get to lunch who loaned me the money for the trip. Then I was off.

I drove faster than I probably ever have all the way to Lansing to pick up thee Molly. I was excited. She was excited. I was going to Chicago. I was going to see my cousin Rose and Mike. It was going to be a blast. So we're driving along, Molly's taking a million pictures with my camera, we're having an awesome time.

She was having fun with my camera

And she gave me a slinky beard

The claw came out and attacked a truck haha

That's when we get to Gary, IN. We hit our first bout of major traffic. I was fine with it, I knew it was going to happen as we were driving into the city at rush hour.  It was stop and go, some construction. But we're chilling, taking in the sunset, laughing, singing at the top of our lungs.

I did enjoy this picture

Molly had a thing for photographing the graffiti.

when BAM! The dude behind us thought it was awesome to take his foot off the brake when we were TRAFFIC...while he was checking his radio and hit my car. At first I was even more livid then I  had been that morning. This guy hit my car. I was pissed. But I decided right then that I wasn't pulling off the highway unless my car started driving funny or something. I could see him in my rearview mirror checking out the back end of my car to see if it was all all right. Molly was coming up with plans of running out of my car and checking it while shaking a fist, at him. We decided that wouldn't be worth it. 
The car behind us, the one in front of the semi, is the jackass that rear-ended us.
So we kept driving on. When the sign that said, "Welcome to Chicago," came up, we yelled with happiness. But I didn't even believe that craziest part of the whole process was going to happen next. I realized we were driving into 5 PM...on a Friday night. And when my directions took me onto the loop, I about had a panic attack. For the life of me, I had never been on a highway so large. There were just cars everywhere and people were crazy and I was freaking out. Yes, Flint driving is NOTHING compared to Chicago driving. Detroit driving isn't even comparable, it's like driving through the country in comparison to Chicago driving. When I got off the loop and onto Lake Shore Drive, I calmed myself and looked around at the city. There we were, in the evening, in the city. Everything was lit up, I was happy once again.

The Skyway

This was taken right after I safely got us on and off the Loop at rush hour.


Navy Pier

We made it to Rose and Mike's lovely home at about 6ish, settled in and took some time visiting. It was nice to see them since I hadn't talked to them in a while. It was also wonderful as we talked about so much stuff. It was awesome. 

Later in the evening, we went into Andersonville, a part of Chicago which, according to Rose, is up and coming as a hang out spot for those who live "in" Chicago. It's not a touristy place where people go, but where the locals hang. We dined at a restaurant called Hamburger Mary's. Other than having amazing food (Those deep-fried PB&J's were amazing) the atmosphere was awesome the all the wait staff were men (but some of them would surprise you!). After that, we walked around the neighborhood and went to go wait in line for the play that they planned to take us to. Now this play was interesting. It was actually 30 plays in 60 minutes. You read that right. Each play were short in length, the audience yelled out the order as you go and most were hilarious, some were interesting and a couple were rather though provoking. All-in-all, we saw 28 of the plays before the 60 minute time limit was up and I thoroughly enjoyed them.
This was over the bar in Hamburger Mary's. I thought it was awesome.


Saturday morning was a little slow starting. I was spent some time drinking some coffee and just waking up before getting ready for the event that I was coming to Chicago roommate Mindu's bridal shower and bachlorette party. After getting all our stuff packed and bidding Rose and Mike farewell, we were on our way our of the city to the North. We were running late, but I wasn't too worried. 

The shower was beautiful. I guess I should say that the dress of everyone involved was beautiful. The Indian women have some of the most beautiful clothing I have ever seen. I love colors and that's what it all was. I just adored all their clothing, ate some amazing Indian food, watched some dancing and enjoyed myself. 
The Michigan group (except Molly who was in the bathroom when it was taken)

Molly and I at the shower.

Mindu and some of the little ones

Afterwards was where it all went downhill. I had gotten over the fact that that asshole hit my car. Gotten over it. But I was sent to my hotel room with no idea what was happening. We didn't know how long we were going to be in there. Could we get undressed (as we were in semi-formal clothing), when were we going into the city, how was I going to pay for dinner and whatever else. It was just a boring and stressful time. 

Finally Nicole, a friend from UM who was there, came across the hall and told us that we were just going to go into the city and they would get back to us. So I donned my evening clothing and we crammed into her little car and were headed back in Chicago. About half-way into the city, Mindu called and told us to go put our group down at the Grand Lux Cafe. No one had done that yet. Awesome. So we keep following the GPS and get into the city, when the GPS loses us. We have no idea where we are at, a group of Michiganders in the big city, and we are freaking out. Finally we find Michigan Ave, find some parking and get out in our expedition to now find the Grand Lux. After walking around several blocks out of our way, we find it and find out that there is a 2 hour wait. It was already 7:30 and we had a comedy show to go to at 10:30. Do you see the problem? By the time we would be seated, it would be 9:30 and well...we would miss the show when they are serving a group of 13. 

Our group waiting in the Grand Lux Cafe.
So we ended up waiting. Half the group went to a Mexican restaurant down the street to wait in line and we decided whichever seated us first we would go to. So we waited. Here I am, getting annoyed, being hungry, in a freaking awesome city, and I am sitting in the lobby of a restaurant waiting for 2 hours of my life. I could have stopped by a McDonald's for all I care and walked around the city before the show with Molly. No problem. But no, we sat/stood there and waited. And waited. And waited some more. Finally getting our seats, we had to hurry. Su Casa makes some really good Mexican food (if you're wondering where we went) but the way they split the bill is what barked up Molly's tree next. She had bought something rather cheap to save money, and ended up paying $20 because they split the bill evenly. So some people didn't pay their whole bill while others (like Molly who paid $13 more than she owed) paid more than they should have. It was not okay. She almost flipped in the restaurant.

So we walked angrily back to the car with her complaining all the way, get out of the horridly small parking garage (how in the HELL do they think that is a 2-way driving in those buildings?) and turned the GPS on to get us to the next place. But it was still messing up. We ended up turning the wrong way, then the wrong way again, and then ended up in one of those streets under the other streets. You know, the kind in Batman that are scary as fuck and you feel like you're going to die. Yeah, one of those. And we couldn't find out way out. Somehow, we came out right by Navy Pier and once we got on Lake Shore Dr. the GPS was like, "HEY, I see you now!" So we made it to the comedy show in Irving Park. It was utterly enjoyable. There was 3 sets of improv groups who were hilarious. The last group had me laughing so hard I was almost crying.

Making it back from this frustrating night, Molly and I fell into bed where I slept until morning. We had plans on driving back into the city to see Rose and Mike one last time and take a drive around the city...but I scrapped those plans. I just wanted to go home. I was done with this weekend. The fact that I stressed about money the whole time and making sure everything was all right (the Libra in me) just tired me out. So the 6 hours home took forever. When I got home, I had one of the most satisfying naps in my life. Seriously.

A last look at the skyline

I saw this sign and I KNEW we weren't lost.

Molly's intense face.

Home sweet Michigan.

Songs From This Trip
1. How to Save a Life- The Fray
2. Moves Like Jagger- Maroon 5
3. Empire State of Mind (part II)- Alicia Keys
4. Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It)- Beyonce
5. White Wedding- Billy Idol
6. Crazy Train- Black Sabbath
7. Hillbilly Bone- Blake Shelton
8. Against the Wind- Bob Seger
9. Iris- Boyce Avenue
10. Heroheroine- Boyslikegirls
11. Deranged- Coheed and Cambria
12. Paradise- Coldplay
13. Over You- Daughtry
14. We Shall Be Free- Garth Brooks
15. Beaches of Cheyenne- Garth Brooks
16. Poker Face- Lady Gaga
17. What I've Done- Linkin Park
18. Sexy and I Know It- LMFAO
19. Sweet Home Alabama- Lynyrd Skynyrd
20. Passionate Kisses- Mary Chapin Carpenter

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Stop it Biological Clock, I Refuse to Grow Up

The past couple days, my mind has been on life and moving on in general. See, this isn't the first time that I notice my friends getting engaged, getting married, having babies, all by the time they are finished with college. But this is the first time that my biological clock, that little thought in there, has been telling me that I am so behind everyone else my age.

But you see, I sit there and go, "whoa whoa whoa." I just turned 21 years old. I am still in college. I have a hard time paying for my cell phone and I've been living off of 1 meal a day the past week to get by until my next paycheck. Though I am surviving, I am not ready to even think about having a child in my life.

But it doesn't stop me from thinking about it. I almost have a sort of jealousy for those women I know who have these little babies and they are so cute and adorable. On Facebook they are like, "blah did this and blah did that." And I'm like, I just want some of that.

But see I know there is a process to these things. First you have to find someone. Though I was in a serious relationship a couple years back, it ended in such a sad way. Because of that, I almost feel like I was afraid to love again. But that isn't true. I put myself out there, but the only people who I have had feelings for lately have ignored them so blatantly it's horrible.

But then after finding someone, you have to be with them for awhile and get engaged. And then comes the marriage. See I want that day. I want a day where it is about me and blah's love and just that. I need something positive in my life. My roommate is getting married in December, and even though I was invited, I can't go. For one, when it came to buy the plane tickets, I couldn't stand putting down 3 months rent for a week trip to India. I know that it would be the trip of a lifetime and I'll probably never ever have the chance again, but look at paragraph 2. I'm sure I'd be eating paper from my printer if I had done that.

After marriage, you have babies. That is the way that I would want to do it. No shortcuts. No kids first, marriage later thing. 

But see, my biological clock is like, "hey, yo, you want a kid. Go find someone. Go fall in love." But it isn't that easy. I wish it was. They always say that "the one" comes if you wait for it, but I'm at the stage where I'm like, when is it going to happen. As a psychology major, I know I am doing exactly what I am supposed to be doing at this point in my life. I am supposed to be finding someone to spend the rest of my life with. But why is it so frustrating?

I guess I'll end this rant with the fact that I know I am still young. I know that there is a lot of my life I haven't lived and there are still a lot of people that I am to meet. That doesn't stop the fact that I am still a) impatient and b) lonely. It doesn't stop the fact that I want someone to share my heart with again. I miss the feeling of companionship, badly.

I think it's time for me and my biological clock to sit down and have a very important talk.

Music from this morning
1. Little Lion Man- Mumford and Sons
2. Two is Better Than One- BoyslikeGirls with Taylor Swift
3. I'd Rather Make Mistakes Than Nothing At All- Mayday Parade
4. Charlie Brown- Coldplay
5. Hurricane- 30 Seconds to Mars
6. She is Love- 3 Doors Down
7. Come November- Thriving Ivory
8. Maybe- Sick Puppies
9. Fix You- Coldplay
10. Crawling Back to You- Daughtry

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Hope is Alive

When I was 10 years old, if you would have sat me down and said that by the time I was 21 I would have no mother, no father, and be living in an apartment trying to fend for myself; I would probably laugh at you. See, at that time, I may have not had much contact with my father, but he was alive. At that time, my mother was my whole entire world. At that time, life was just fine for the most part. At least in my eyes.

It seems weird now, looking back, how much life has pushed me around and tried to bury me in the ground; yet I keep shining on. I may not have been given the best set of cards in life, but I seem to navigate through them with a sort of grace that I think is a gift.

When I lost my mother, my whole world ended. I didn't know how to function. For one, I was 14 years old. At that age, you depend on your mother for so much. Your mother is supposed to guide you through those tough high school years. She is supposed to go dress shopping with you before Homecoming and Prom. She is supposed to be there to watch you graduate.

I spent the last years of my mother's life walking 3 steps behind her. I was in a constant state of worry that she was going to get sick, that she was going to get hurt, that something was going to be wrong when I woke up in the morning. That is what having a mother with cancer does to you. My mother wasn't one to ask for help either (it's what we call between cousins, the Proulx Pride. I have it too). So I was the one, day in and day out that was there to care fore her during some of the scariest times in my life.

Living in a state of being behind someone for years, and then being freed from that burden is hard. You don't know what to do. You don't have someone to take care of anymore. It's almost weird in a way. It was also relieving in some ways as well.

Those years in high school weren't easy though once my mother had passed and I moved in with her younger brother. It wasn't easy for me to adjust to their household, the way they parented (which was totally different from my mother) and just how held down to the floor I was. I felt like a puppy who constantly gets their nose wiped in their mess on the carpet. I wasn't allowed "me time." I had to be constantly doing something, but I was also constantly being judged for what I did.

This is probably why a) I was not ready to move out when I did, and b) I got my butt out of there as soon as I could. See, Uncle Dave swore that they were teaching me how to be a person that will prosper, but he wasn't allowing me to make the mistakes in high school that I could make and still learn from them. So I had to learn about them when the consequences are worse as an adult. I didn't make enough money to support living on my own, so whenever I called Uncle Dave for money out of my trust, he gave me a speech that I hated to hear, but I had nothing else I could fall back on. I spent days alone in my apartment crying my eyes out because I knew I wasn't going to be able to pay rent. What was I going to do? I couldn't even afford food. The only thing I could fall back on was that bank account that my mother left behind, and the rant Uncle Dave gave me in between.

The was one of the lowest times in my life (other then the months I knew my mother was dying and I was struggling with everything going on). I was desperate. I didn't know what I was going to do. I had fallen out of contact with so many of my family members and I wasn't just going to ask them for help (i.e. the Proulx Pride once again). It was just a cycle of destruction.

But when you are in a hole, everything begins to look up. It took some major struggling, some tears, a lot of frustration, but I made it through for the most part. It has been almost a year since I asked for money out of that account for anything. Though my mother left it to me for my living expenses, I understand that Uncle Dave is trying to protect it for the future. I've gotten to the point that I can now mostly fund the lifestyle I want to have.

See, this is the pact I gave myself when I moved out of their home. I wasn't going to give up. See, when the hard times came around, I gritted my teeth and moved forward. I had hope that the next day was going to be better than ever before. I believe it became so hard for me because that was the time I was actually grieving the death of my mother. I never properly grieved when I lived with Uncle Dave. I felt that any sign of weakness in their household was something that they could prey upon and bring back in my face. I had to put up a front, and hide the feelings that I had. When I was out of that, I felt everything.

Grief is a process just like life. And it is a process that you must work through. Am I over the deaths that have happened in my life? No. But do they take up every moment of everyday like they did in 2009? No. Though this isn't what I call the perfect life, I have found a way through life that keeps me from giving in to the rigors of the world. I have learned many life lessons that some don't learn for many years. I have climbed mountains in 21 years. I have conquered problems by myself and I have won.

All because I never lost hope. Yes, there were times when I thought that I was never going to be happy. There were times when I thought I was going to be stuck like that forever. But then I found that little glimmer, that flicker, of hope and it kept me moving forward.

Sometimes you just have to hold on to that small bit of hope to make it to the next day. It may be hard to find, but in the end, it's totally worth it.

Sometimes I hear things that my family keeps from me (like the death of my father and those details that came out earlier this year) and it is disheartening. But I also know they were trying to protect me. I hope someday that I am seen as someone who is strong like my friends always say I am. Or someone who is strong like my mother, and they can trust me with these secrets that they hid to protect me.

But until that day I shall keep carrying on with the fire of hope deep inside and a smile on my face.

Songs of the morning:
1. Every Teardrop is a Waterfall- Coldplay
2. Hurricane- 30 Seconds to Mars
3. Maybe- Sick Puppies
4. Heaven- 3 Doors Down
5. My Body- Young the Giant
6. Mercenary- Panic! At the Disco
7. Survivor's Guilt- Rise Against
8. For the First Time- The Script
9. Drown in You- Daughtry
10. Alibi- 30 Seconds to Mars
11. Fix You- Coldplay
12. Two is Better than One- Boyslikegirls w/ Taylor Swift
13. Deranged- Coheed and Cambria

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Another Day, Another Dollar

Hey there! 

Another 5 AM shift here...and another 4 hours that I spend the time counting down until 9 am so that I can go back to bed. Yeah, no fun right? But at least it's a job, and this shift is going to help pay for my trip to Chicago in a couple weeks for my roommate's wedding shower. I am hoping to also see my cousin who lives there as well. Plannnnsss....I can't wait though, and I'm sure that there'll be a blog ALL about it after the fact (with pictures if I remember to take my camera!)

As for happenings in the past week or so. I did go see Paranormal Activity 3 with the gang after a dinner with Aunt Linney. Of course, the restaurant I went to was soooo slow and even though we were plenty early, I missed the first 5 minutes of the movie (BOO!). But I did watch them later online ;)

The trip to the cemetery was more interesting than I expected (and wet!). Glenwood cemetery that we visited has a lot of Flint history and so there were some well known "Flint" names in there. That evening Abijah, Tanisha and I went to a frat halloween party. SO much fun! 
We were just chilling in the car... (Abijah)

So I decided to make it...(ME!)
A photoshoot! (Tanisha

Whiting Mausoleum.

Dort Obliesk.
Friday ended up bringing about a cancellation of the staff bonding, so a bunch of us got together and went to Red Robin and then chilled back in the apartment. It's always a GREAT time when my friends come together and Friday night was no exception!

Saturday afternoon we celebrated Molly's 21st with a family lunch at Applebee's. Sadly for her, they wouldn't accept her temporary license so that mudslide she wanted so bad was out of her reach. But it didn't matter because that evening we had a fun time at her older brother's house :)
Molly and I at Birthday lunch :)

My car hit 100,000 miles on the way to Molly's brother's house.

Except for the odd allergic reaction that left me in bed all day yesterday, this week has been about the norm week (last week was rather extraordinary). Tomorrow is what we are calling, "The Great Birthday's Bash" which is the culmination of about 4 different people including Molly and I, who have all turned 21 in the past couple weeks, coming together and just having a great time with friends at a club. I am looking forward to that evening (and the fact that I don't have to work on Saturday! Woot!

Other awesome thing's I'm working on right now:

- I am doing the Happy Hogwarts Christmas swap which has me making some crafts and Harry Potter themed things for my partner. It has been getting my Harry Potter geekiness back to the forefront. I am SO okay with that!
- I have my box of randomness to send my partner this week in the Box cram swap I am in. 
- I also finished updating my story for the "your story" swap where you share a life (or a part of it) with your partner. I love learning about other people!

There are other's of course, but for time's sake, I'll leave you here. Have a GREAT weekend!!!

This morning's songs:
1. My Way- 3 Doors Down
2. Survivor's Guilt- Rise Against
3. Hurricane- 30 Seconds to Mars (ft. Kanye West)
4. One of Those Days- Joshua Radin
5. Major Minus- Coldplay
6. Drown in You- Daughtry
7. My Body- Young the Giant
8. Mercenary- Panic! at the Disco
9. Let Live- Of Mice and Men
10. Call Me Hopeless, But Not Romantic- Mayday Parade