Monday, August 6, 2012


I've been trying to compose a Last Blog Post in my head all day, with little luck. How do you conclude five and a half years of cyberbabble?

Eh. You accept that you can't.

I'm done here. Thank you for reading, especially if you've been reading all along.

I knew I should have developed a signature goodbye by now. Alas.


Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Case by Case

[I fixed the video!]


Bum be bum bum bum di da da di da

I don't like my previous post much. "Oh, here's a whole eighteen paragraphs on a topic I claim I'm not worried about." And then, eh, I suppose I shouldn't gather that my processing something is the same as worrying about it. But still. And I was so hyperbolic. I am the most hyperbolic I've ever been.


I just ate a ginormous bowl of Kix and a vanilla Drumstick. And I'm soooo sleeeeepyyyyy and I use so many vowels when I'm sleeeeepy. Ys, sometimes.

(I do like that this blog accurately conveys changes in my depth of thought.... "What, pray tell, does the future hold?" shares a brain with "YES! My milk to cereal ratio was LEGIT!")

I've gone a few days without an anxiety episode. It's all or nothing, it seems. Balancing it is kind of fun. Choppy waters groom stronger sailors. And sometimes... it's no fun at all.

My email is broken. That's pretty rude!

I am going to talk to the Registrar on Thursday. Right after I pass my motorcycle licensing test. And just like that, numerous shows are getting on the road. My money show, however, has taken to what feels like a gravel path. While walking barefoot. But I've only ever been at the mercy of God's provision, and I continue to praise that I am. Lack of resources grooms...stronger resource sailors. Stewards, if you will. Stewards of the High Seas.


This song plays at work a lot. People don't like it. It's one of my very favorite songs of ever. I told a scoffing colleague that I put this on the first love mix I ever made. She asked if we were still together. Touche, darling. But Joni and I, we did the best we could, and between that relationship and this song, the better of the two survived.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

"Where do you see yourself in five years?"

And I felt myself searching for answers that typically satisfy. I said something about being either five years further into vertical growth in my current job, or roughly three years closer to a profession it might take me another two years to determine. They seemed satiated.

I thought about this the whole way home, talking out loud to myself and to God the way I do. Where do I see myself in five years?

How about where does God see me in five years? I mean honestly, in five years, I see myself thankful that I've lived for twenty-five years. Isn't the point that I don't see anything? Who am I to project myself that far into the future on my own strength?

I'm not negating hope. I understand goals and ambitions and dreams. I understand the basic, linear curiosity behind the question. And I don't resent the question. I'm quite pleased it was asked of me, considering it spurred this much thought. I would have thought about it less if not for the amount of recent thought I've put into going back to school. My first thought was, wow! Five years from now, I could be two years into exploring any field I choose. Here's the thing, though.

I know I sound like a hippie, an idealist, or perhaps just plain lazy, but I feel like I chose my field when I quit school. I don't want to learn the way university requires me to. I can't afford to get a degree and travel. Even if I could, I'd have to work around my school schedule. I can't work full-time and take classes. I'll cut my speed of progress in half. Yes, I will have done it for the sake of progress in something else... but what?

There's a giant blank there that I haven't filled. The longer I go without filling it, the more readily I grasp that I might not. I mean, I might. There's time. But I might not. Cause there's time. There's only so much time, and it's not much at all, and how will I wish I had spent it?

I have been attempting to master three things.
1) Separate what I can change from what I can't. Change what I can as I want to. Release what I can't.
2) Be a better friend.
3) Stop worrying.
alternate title:
3) Trust God.

I do wonder if/why I lack ambition. I don't think I would wonder this on my own. I think I anticipate that other people might wonder that for me. It doesn't make me feel very good. It makes me feel stagnant and shallow and loser-y. So, ambition. What do I want to do? Where do I see myself in five years?

By the grace of God, I will have come across someone who I live to love and support. I am realizing how often my happiness hides in others' happiness. I just... want everyone to be who they want to be. And I want to help them get there.

My dream is to help people reach their dreams. I don't care in what capacity. I would set aside every dream I have if it meant I could take some part in encouraging/praying/funding/moving/hard laboring/baking/brewing/writing/laughing people I love into the places they see themselves.

Where do I see myself in five years? Where do YOU see yourself in five years? How can I help you get there?

That's how I feel. That's the furthest I've gotten. And you know what, time and money are finite. God hasn't established a degree as the most worthy recipient of mine. That will always be all the peace I need about forgoing one.

The person who asked me this question concluded our discussion by telling me, "You know, I'll always watch out for you, but I'll never worry about you. You are going to be more than fine."

I could have cried. That sentiment is the most I could ever ask of anybody. I am the most content I've ever been. I am in the most awe of God's love and faithfulness to me than I've ever been. My heart is the most geographically settled it's ever been. Concern for me is laughable.

Where do I see myself in five years?

Still happy. Still prayerful. Near my family. In possession of long-awaited travel memories. In literary magazines? In love? Grateful.

Here's the truth.

I'm just not worried about it.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012



Thinking a lot about God's faithfulness and provision and my adventures in prayer.

About good friends and excessive laughter.

About ambition and intention and their marriages to action and execution.

About recognizing unproductive thought and minimizing it.

About squeezing peace from anxiety

joy from concern

reality from dreams

truth from wonder.

About abstract nouns and the insufficient depth of language.

Perhaps that's why eyes say so much.

Sunday, July 22, 2012


she was terribly hungry. 
and she wasn’t a pronoun
not a euphemism for that girl,
not an antecedent in hiding,
not a tally for feminism,
not a manifestation
of anything other than a place
to store waffles,
and she did.
fluorescent lighting harsh
like her eye contact,
a prayer for a dimmer switch basking
in the bottom of every bottomless cup
of coffee
--a euphemism indeed.
she was alone
often alone
shaking with laughter and unease
saying things like
“I’ve lost my style.”
they ask, “How is
and she finds that
an impossible question to answer.

expressway blues echo.
later, a train will croon
and it settles into her like a knife
into soft wood
the idea that everywhere is somewhere
people traveling as hopes do:
at the mercy of delays and cancellations.
the only map she can see confirms that she is,
in fact,
ordering seconds
of time and of hashbrowns
her eyes alight like the pre-dawn sky.
the grey-blues soften as the sounds in her head do,
internal silence reaching equilibrium
with that of the world at this hour.
counting the number of syllables in the word
she makes Olympic rings out of water circles
and peace with expectations.
she notes that she's only ever seen
one Heinz variety
and that this linoleum booth is no harder
than it is to say goodbye.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Step 3

Me again. I always attempt a bit of a routine when I find myself buzzing at a frequency higher than I can control. Pray. Drive. Blog. Sleep.

Which is silly, cause there's nothing to say.

When I was in seventh grade, I qualified for a three-week academic summer camp at Davidson College. The course I chose was Mysteries of Human Consciousness. Man, if a degree existed by that exact title, I'd have it by now. Anyway. We watched this video that detailed two cases of abnormal neurological chemical levels, but I can't remember the chemicals. In one case, the patient could find no other explanation for his lack of emotional recognition of his parents than to claim that they'd been abducted by aliens. He was so devoid of love and affection for them that he had to wonder if they were them at all. Something to do with serotonin or dopamine, perhaps. His parents were distraught, unable to convince their son that they were exactly who they'd always been. In the second case, the patient could find no explanation for his overblown care and concern for every single living thing other than to claim that he was God. Heightened levels of the same chemicals caused him to imagine ownership and compassion for every single plant, animal, and person. He was exhausted.

Of all the things I learned during that program, which was the up-to-then best experience of my life, it's this video I recall most often. I have drawn upon it when I wonder what tangible things, if any, cause my crippling sense of hyperawareness. I tire of the mind. I believe in it as I do the soul, but it's like treating a high blood pressure patient for heartbreak. Similar catalysts may intersect to produce similar symptoms, but if what you're doing isn't working, it's time to consider other diagnoses.

I have a regular customer with Tourette's whom I see almost daily. His audible and visible compulsions make people uncomfortable. He tries to control them but is rarely successful. What most seem to see as poor self-judgment of his capacity to handle social situations, I see as courage. Sure, there's a point at which he should be mindful of his effect on other people, but I think that's exactly what he is. The internal plea he makes to himself to be normal is broadcast in the brief eye contact he musters in place of verbal responses to how-are-yous and have-a-good-days.

I've never been close to someone with Tourette's, so I have no explicit justification for my defense of this man outside of my attempt at compassion and kindness. But it unnerves me terribly to imagine how I would process visible manifestations of my mental grievances. Sometimes I wish I were forced to, if only to release a valve in what feels like a pressurized cocoon. Sometimes I feel closer to that man than I do to anyone else all day. Which is fine, considering that growing close to anyone feels like cocoon implosion.

Step 2 found me accelerating up a hill earlier tonight, and as I looked down to check my speed, the needle jumped almost imperceptibly from 45 to 50mph. Not gradually. Instantly. The discrepancy between what I felt in my constant acceleration and what I saw in the instant result... I can't explain it. Incongruencies send in-that-state me over the edge. My attempt to literally shake off the anxiety battled my ability to stay in my lane. The latter won, to be clear. Nothing to see here, folks.

Well. Looks like there was some to say, after all. Goodnight forreal. Step 4 beckons.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Never Lost

Merrhh. If that's what crankiness sounds like.

The pile of laundry on my bed is taller than I am wide. Or deep? Whatever my horizontal dimension. Don't worry. It's clean. It's like napping in a valley. Napping Valley! hahahahahah


I love my ampersand! It's been long enough that I can look at it without reflecting on the decision itself. I see it now and think, "did I come with this?! who put it there! it's awesome!" Silly goose. You did. Cause you're cool.

The sunlight filters through dancing leaves and static blinds while I filter through thoughts that pass like highway exits. Attempts to repossess them float away in futility comparable to that of a wintertime firefly hunt.

My rising gas budget is a donation to the therapy that is driving curvy roads, windows down, Dylan Waters Morrison Townsend Mitchell Garfunkel wailing along with me. I do most of the wailing. Well, and Dylan. What a guy.

Spirits are high, I think. The family tackles trials together and only ever loves and enjoys each other more as a result. The job, no matter its sometimes (uh, often) overwhelming triviality, means what it means to me and gives me the opportunity to glorify God through maintained patience and humility and grace concerning colleagues and customers alike. I've settled into a general sense of belonging, but the recognition of such hasn't filled a desperate void. It's improved upon a standard. I'm never lost. I belong where I'm happy, where I'm loved, where I love. The rest is all gravy and buttercream icing. As separate condiments. Don't be gross.

I would like to conclude with the sound of a small smile. I typed all the crankiness right outta me.

Enjoy your evening. Encourage someone. Embrace silence.


Gossip Girl