When In Doubt, Get A Puppy

Winnie - Day 1 (8 Weeks) Winnie - Day 2 (8 Weeks)

Say hello to my new baby girl Winnifred “Winnie” Bowman.

I have been super emotional lately and really wanted an addition to love and take care of. She has already brightened my spirits tremendously and I absolutely adore her.

If you are curious, she is a Great Pyrenees/Anatolian Shepherd Mix and is 8 weeks old. She should be huge and super lazy! My kind of dog!

I am super excited to have her join my family. We are working on potty training right now and it is so fun. She is such a hoot and I can’t wait to do life with her forever!

❤ Lauren

Visiting Home Is Like Staring At A Pitchfork

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It had been about a month since I had been home, so going back this past weekend was a mix of feelings. Home is one of my favorite places to be, but I wasn’t enjoying all of the memories this time around. Yesterday, I was having a fantastic day spending time with my mom and then my phone lights up with a response to a group message and my whole day goes downhill from there.

Two words. That’s all it took to spin my mind into all different kinds of directions. Two stupid words from one specific person. I wish people’s actions and non-actions didn’t affect me so much, but honestly I can’t help it. Well late that night I was coming home from a birthday party that didn’t help my mindset at all and I ended up in my high school parking lot.

I just sat there in my car staring at this building that holds so many memories. It was like staring at a pitchfork. The left prong signifies what I used to dream my life would look like. The right prong signifies how I currently dream my life will look like. The middle prong signifies how my life is actually going. Sadly as I looked at this picture, my life doesn’t seem to be looking at all what I hoped or what I hope it would. Then I lost it.

There are days I just feel so lost. My college experience sucks. My friends are all excelling and changing. My family is constantly growing together and then falling apart. My mind is a warzone. Most days I don’t know who I am or where I am going. I just feel stuck and alone and pathetic. I desperately want some kind of direction and an identity.

As I sat there in that parking lot, I thought a lot about the girl who used to walk those halls. I thought about her smile, her laughter, her attitude, her friends, her dreams. I thought about how one of my friends told me that she missed the old me, the one who was her best friend. Then I lost it all over again. That girl wasn’t always all smiles and sass… she had many nights of tears and many walks alone in the park; she was just better at hiding it.

I don’t think I can be that girl again. So much has happened since I was 14, a wide-eyed freshman, and 18, a hopeful senior. I can’t just go back and forget all that has happened to me, all that I have felt, all that I have been told, all that has surfaced… it has scarred me and shaped me. I don’t think I can be that girl again, but what does that mean for me?

❤ a girl

Fake It Till You Make It

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I am positive that every single person has been told this phrase. Maybe you have been the one to give this advice. Let me be clear: faking it till you make it is bullshit! I hate this phrase more than I hate being told to be yourself. It is nonsense and awful and I never want to hear it again.

Fake It Till You Make It… to me that is encouragement to lie to myself and those around me. How is lying about how I feel and what I think going to help me “make it”? In my experience, this kind of behavior just helps dig a deeper hole into loneliness and hopelessness. If no one knows how you feel because you put on a happy face when you are really dying inside, how will you get help, how will you succeed, how will you get better?

I understand that in situations that make you feel uncomfortable, you need to push through for perhaps a friend or a family member. So I think that it is very important that we be careful when we give this advice. It definitely depends on the situation whether this is good advice or not.

It is a completely different story to tell someone to keep their head up and their thoughts positive. It might be one of those easier-said-than-done type of thing, but at least it is a real encouragement. I believe you can keep your head up while still being honest and open about how you feel inside. You can be a strong person who is struggling.

Maybe it is just the word ‘fake’ or ‘faking’ that I just don’t like. It has such a negative connotation. I don’t want to be fake in any form whether it is just to keep up a specific appearance. That is exactly what I stand against. I have always been an advocate for saying exactly what you think and being exactly how you feel. Being fake (even for the benefit of yourself) isn’t healthy. I think it would be better to be out and about while being vocal or open about not wanting to be… that is a good start in my eyes, because then at least your friends and family know where you stand and how you are instead of thinking you are “better” or happy because that is the face that you put on.

Why can’t we just take off our masks and be real with each other? Then it wouldn’t be so taboo to see people showing different emotions and we wouldn’t feel so alone in ours.

❤ a girl

Why So Emotional?

why so emotionalYesterday was an absolute whirlwind of emotion.

The thing is that I can not even figure out what I was feeling or why I was feeling it. Not being able to pinpoint what you feel or why you feel it can be so frustrating and just cause you to be even more emotional.

My thoughts were so incredibly unrealistic and ridiculous. Something triggers the extreme negativity and sadness and then I am a spiraling basket case from there.

I was having a perfectly normal day. I woke up early to take my best friend to work, then came back to finish sleeping, got out of bed a second time to take a shower and get around. I had a pleasant phone conversation with my mother. I decided to go to Barnes and Noble to find a book I actually wanted to read and then I went to grab lunch at Wendy’s, because I am obsessed with their chicken nuggets at the moment.

I am sitting at a table for two in Wendy’s with my #10 and three cups of ketchup. My keys, phone, and new book are sitting on the table behind my food. I have already finished all the of the chicken nuggets and am staring at the french fries when I realize that I don’t want to be there. I get up, throw away all of the fries and my drink, and then go back out to my car. I am sitting in the driver’s seat and just start bawling, practically hyperventilating, for no apparent reason. (And no it is not my time of the month.) I tell myself to pull myself together and I sit there awhile longer dabbing at my nose and eyes until I can drive and pull out and drive to my place.

When I get back, I decide that I should try writing, so I get my laptop out to write a little bit and the words just aren’t coming. I start to cry again. Lately I haven’t wanted to read, write, do homework, go out, or any of the things I used to love to do. I text my mom and tell her that I think something is wrong. She asks why and I spell it out for her and then she calls me. I try to stay calm as I talk to her and she tells me that I just need to get out of my room and make some new friends and find a new hobby; just listening to her voice makes me start crying all over again. I just can’t control it. I am sniffling as she tells me to cheer up and I have to end up letting her go. My phone starts to die, so I plug it in and I am just sitting on the floor against my window. Just sitting there as single little tears fall down my cheeks.

There is nothing wrong with me or my life. I am perfectly healthy. I am getting a good education. I have a few good friends. I have a supportive family. I have no reason to sit in my floor and cry. Every time I would finally get myself under control something else would pop into my head until I was sobbing again. It got worse, but admitting that I laid under my bed clutching my teddy bear would be an extreme low……… I contemplating banging my head up against my door to see if that would knock me out of this trance.

In not so many words, I had a strange day full of emotions that were so unclear, unwanted, unnecessary. I just ended up being really confused and tired. I thought I might be able to snap out of it and so I stayed at my place a little longer. I managed to get out a blog post, read a chapter of my new book, and then it started again. I couldn’t handle it. So I hopped in my car and drove home.

I know that going home is not the best option and won’t solve all my problems, but just being out on the open road helped a lot. It might sound silly or cliche, but I love driving. I love the wind in my hair, the road noise, the thrill of flying down the highway; just knowing that I have a destination that I can get to seemed to put my mind at ease. Once I got home, I had a very pleasant dinner with my mom that really opened some doors for us and I was feeling significantly better once I got to see her and spend time with her. I got to chill with my dog as well. There is just something about being surrounded by family and in a place where I feel comfortable that can change so much.

Honestly, I have no clue what is going on with me and I hope it does not continue. What a weird day yesterday was.

❤ a girl

Expectations

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My heart hurts.

It hurts, because I feel like I can’t be honest with my family and friends. I can’t tell them about how I feel. I can’t tell them all that is running through my head all the time. I can’t tell them about my disappointments, about my fear, about my problems.

My heart hurts.

It hurts, because I have to keep everything bottled up inside me. I bottle it up, because the people in my life won’t understand. They won’t understand my change of heart, my change of mind, or my change of perspective.

My heart hurts.

It hurts, because I am filled with so much fear. I fear that if I am honest with the people in my life they will leave me, push me aside, declare me unworthy of their time. I have no proof they will react like this, but I know them. I have experienced their reactions to things similar to this and I don’t want to experience it myself. Sometimes fear is good. Healthy. Sometimes keeping it bottled up is easier. Better.

My heart hurts.

It hurts, because I all I want to do is explode. I want to confess everything! I want to tell them how I am questioning my faith. I want to tell them that I am confused. I want to tell them that I want to experience life. I want to tell them that I don’t want to be perfect anymore.

My heart hurts.

It hurts, because the people in my life have expectations of me that they are not willing to lower or change. I instilled these expectations in them. I was that girl that they expect me to be, but people change. I have changed. They won’t understand. So I bottle it up and wait until the day I explode.

My heart hurts.

❤ a girl