Ghosts of Boyfriends Past: A Lengthy Dissection of my Life as I Know It

Life is shaping up to be a lot different that I thought it would be.  Like, a LOT.  2011 hasn't treated me the way I expected.  The highs have been high, and the lows have definitely been low.  Round about January my lovely little dreams started falling out of the sky where I had hung them so carefully and shattering in piles at my feet.  Bummer.

For instance:  I was going to get married this summer.  I was.  There was no question in my mind.  But I'm not.  The relationship that I held on to so tightly for three and a half years ended rather abruptly.  The nights that I cried myself to sleep for loneliness suddenly held no meaning.  The hundreds and hundreds of letters that I wrote, pouring out my very soul, were for nothing.  I was single again.  Did I despair?  No.  I began a new relationship. It was great and perfect and wonderful, as was he.  I was so happy.  Until it ended too, leaving me alone again, just wondering where I went wrong and what I should do with these dream fragments on the floor.  Cue tragic playlist.  {Go ahead....give her a listen a couple of times.}

This post, however, is not about the ghosts of my boyfriends past.  Those ghosts are still a little too alive to casually discuss on my blog.  Maybe some other time.

The love (or lack thereof) example is not the only instance of life's curve balls this year.  It's probably the dream that hit me hardest on it's way down though.  I've been sad and lonely.  I've been confused and discouraged.  I've started to question what I'm made of.

I read this blog today and had to laugh {sardonically} out loud.  Forgive me for sharing my personal favorite part:
I'm pretty sure that being 22 and single in the LDS culture is the same as being 35 and single in the Regular People world--like, you start to wonder if maybe you should be getting your eggs frozen.
Well shoot friends.  I suppose that's me.  The thing is, it's kinda true.  At the ripe old age of 22, I have almost no single friends my same age.  My little sister's friends are starting to get married.  I went to a baby shower a few weeks ago, and the only other person there without at least one child was the girl that was seven months pregnant.  Am I ever behind the times.

I love my friends.  I am so happy that they're happy.  But more and more lately I find myself wondering bitterly when it will be my turn.  Being single is getting really, REALLY old.  The novelty left with all my single friends.  And even though it's never EVER right to assume that other peoples' lives are too easy, I am so good at being the Joan of Arc of singleness, burning at my stake and looking out at all those marrieds with their cute husbands and cute kids and telling myself that they don't know how good they have it.  {The difference is, these judgmental thoughts are not likely to get me 'sainted' any time soon.}

Enter ghostly boyfriends.  My old roommate's boyfriends to be exact.  Meet Caitlin.

With her blonde hair, big eyes and winning smile, she really couldn't help but be a bit of a serial dater.  All the boys always loved Caitlin, and she never had a dating shortage.  Caitlin was part of the mass roommate exodus of 2008-2009 and now resides happily in Albuquerque where she attends graduate school.  She doesn't run into the boys she used to date anymore, but I still do.  And it's usually pretty awkward.  With the exception of this one guy, Matt.  It's not awkward running into him, probably because they only ever went on one date and I've had more conversations with him than she ever did on account of the walk we shared to the Clyde building from time to time freshman year. I ran into him sometime last year shortly after he returned from his mission, and it took us a second to make the oh-yeah-you-went-on-a-date-with-my-old-and-now-married-roommate connection.  After we did though, things were cool.

I saw Matt today as I was walking home from work.  We said the casual 'hi' as we passed each other, and then from about twenty feet behind me I heard him yell, 'Hey, when do you graduate?'  to which I yelled back 'I already graduated.  I start grad school in the fall.'

And then I walked home in the sunshine, feeling mighty proud of myself.

Elle Woods has a line in "Legally Blonde: The Musical" that I really like these days: "Look how far I have come without anyone holding my hand."

The thing is, I'm going to grad school.  How many people do you know that can say that?  Probably just a handful.  And not just *any* grad school....PHYSIOLOGY grad school.  How legit is that?  And did I mention that they are paying ME for the pleasure of my attendance?

Not only am I going to grad school, but I am a self-sufficient adult.  I pay my own bills.  I finished a bachelor's degree at the age of 21.  I lived in Europe.  I take care of myself.  And I like to think I'm pretty good at it.  So go ahead, look how far I have come without anyone holding my hand.

I've been doing a lot of thinking about those shattered dreams.  It's time to start gluing broken dreams together.  I've decided to make a mosaic.  My life is going to be one fantastic piece of art when I'm finished.


Life Lesson: You Get What You Pay For

Remember how I was so excited for my $2 manicure?  {See post title.....}

On the bright side, I had a really good time with Sandee and Oliver.


{Insert Witty Title Here}

Abraham Lincoln said "Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be."  I've always believed that.  Lately I haven't been doing a very good job of making up my mind to be happy.  I've been letting things outside my control affect the way I feel.  That, in turn, has been frustrating me.  I like to feel like I'm in the driver's seat of my life, and I hate the idea that someone or something other than myself has the power to dictate my mood.

So today at lunch I made up my mind to be happy.  I have every reason in the world to be cheerful, and it's selfish to wallow.  I really think that's the bottom line.

When I'm sad or angry or discouraged, my dad always tells me to count my blessings.  Without further ado:

*I have a wonderful family.  I really can't express how much they mean to me.

*I have a bachelor's degree from a respected university, and I'm getting paid to start my master's degree in the fall.

*I love my field of study.  LOVE it.

*I have a good job where the people are friendly and understanding.  They are so good to me here.

*I have amazingly wonderful friends.  The girls I live with now... The girls I lived with before... {And the friends that aren't girls too...}  All great people.

*I have an apartment that keeps me dry when it rains, warm when it's cold, and cool when it's hot.  Yes, the carpet is ugly.  Yes, the dishwasher falls out of the cabinet when you open the door.  Yes, it's not the most deluxe of residences.  But a roof is a roof, and lots of people don't have one.

*I have a car to go wherever I want, whenever I want (Case in point: I ran away to Idaho last week.  That decision was made about 30 minutes in advance.)

*I live in America.

*I know that I have a Heavenly Father that loves me.

*I am getting a manicure tomorrow.  For only $2.  Woot!

*I have a healthy, functional body that puts up with a lot of abuse from me (*ahem*waytoomuchjunkfood*ahem*), but is a remarkably good sport about it.

*Once I lived here.  It was an incredibly opportunity.

Overall my life is really great.  No questions asked.  Which is why my pity party is officially over.


Book Review(s)

Yesterday I read "Stargirl" by Jerry Spinelli per the recommendation of my delightful friend Rachel.  I think I liked it?  The moral of the story was really good; it's all about being yourself and putting other people first.  It left me feeling a little sad and unsettled though.  For that reason I give it 3.5 stars.  I always prefer books with happy endings.

Today I read "The Horse and His Boy" by C. S. Lewis per the recommendation of my friend Kevin.  It's one of the Chronicles of Narnia.  I read most of them when I was in sixth grade, but I'd never read that one before.  He actually recommended that I re-read the entire series, and I probably will over the course of the summer, but for my 20 books list he specifically told me to read this one.  It was a good, fast, easy read.  C. S. Lewis's writing is fun to read and I enjoyed this book.  4 stars.

Incidentally, I am currently faced with a dilemma: I have an gift card and I have no idea what to get with it.  I am wide open to suggestions; feel free to comment.


Dear Mom, this Post is for You :)

I went home last week for Jared's graduation.  That was weird.  Cool.  But weird.  He's moving to Provo in a couple of weeks, and I think it will be fun to have him down here.

I made kiwi ice cream on Sunday.  I wasn't really sure that kiwi ice cream even sounded good, but my Ben & Jerry's cookbook said it was for 'the connoisseur with discerning tastes' or something?  The moral of the story: kiwi ice cream is delicious.  But really.  It's so good.  Plus, I convinced myself that it's healthy, since there are 1.5 kiwis per cup of ice cream.  Translation: I got like 3 fruit servings in my dessert after dinner last night (please don't do the math to figure out how big of a bowl that's embarrassing.)  Best.  Idea.  Ever.

My family was here for Memorial Day, and while the boys went to ride dirt bikes I went shopping with my mom and Haley.  We went to DSW.  I don't know if I ever mentioned this but I *love* high heels.  So much.  And I had birthday do the math (I don't mind as much here.)  It was a good day.

I only got about 2/3 of the way done with "East of Eden" before it was due back to the library.  I tried to renew it, but there are like 10 people on the hold list!  Why?  It's not even that fun to read.  I decided to check it out from BYU's library instead of the Provo Library only to find out that my library privileges on campus have been revoked until fall when I start school again.  Lame.  So now I'm #11 on the hold list, and it will be August before I figure out how it ends.

I just finished reading "How to Win Friends and Influence People."  I was disappointed at how earth-shattering it wasn't.  I don't really think Dale Carnegie needed 250 pages to say 'Smile more, listen when people talk to you, and try to remember names and birthdays.'  It only took me 15 words..... But it was like the father of self-help books or something, and now when I attend fancy dinner parties I'll have something to contribute to the conversation when it comes up.  (Fancy dinner parties basically dominate my social calendar.   It really is a nightmare sometimes, being so influential with so many friends...)

Suzy gets home on June 15th.  That's two weeks from today.  I am very much looking forward to having her back.  It's lonely and quiet around the apartment without her.  But she's having a fabulous time.  Check out her pictures of the Swiss Alps.  So jealous.