Tuesday, December 31, 2013


I think it was last year that Natalie posted about picking one word as her theme for the year. I wanted to do the same, but I was at a total loss as to what word to pick. This year, it comes to me with the blissful ease of a smile.


I want Twenty-Fourteen to be full of truth. I want to speak truth to others. I want to surround myself with others who speak truth.

But even more than just avoiding falsehoods, I want to be true to myself, and surround myself with people who do the same. I want to be true to my Creator. I want to be true to the big picture. I want twenty-fourteen to be a very clear, bright, real year. Like diamonds and good teeth.

There is nothing as arresting as seeing someone's true colors, someone's true state of being, unveiled. I suppose there are times when that's a positive thing, like learning that Bruce Wayne is Batman {spoiler alert}, but in my experience, that sort of disillusionment is brutal and disappointing.

I want to avoid that in twenty-fourteen. I want to seek truth from the beginning, and not stop until I'm sure I've found it. I'm apparently very good at discerning truth; I just don't give myself enough credit.

I'm excited for twenty-fourteen :) I'm so ready to shed the tired, raw skin of twenty-thirteen. Twenty-fourteen will be better; I'm sure of it. I'm going to see that it is. I'm going to live with True as my theme.

I expect that it will set me free.


Sunday, December 29, 2013

Writer's Constipation

There are words inside of you. Tons and tons of Words. There are so many words inside your head that it's physically uncomfortable. You can feel them like a pressure behind your eyeballs. There are too many words to keep inside.

You smile. Cool. So you can write. You'll write. How exciting!

So you sit down at your computer, or pull out a notebook and pen. You stare at the blankness, and prepare to write. The words leap to the tip of your mental tongue. You wait for them to make the final connection and spill forth.

But they don't.

You put your fingertips directly on the keyboard, hoping to signal your words that it's time to come out now. This is their cue. Nnnnnnnnow.

But they just sit there.

You frown and make a conscious effort to dislodge the words from your mind. You close your eyes and try to hunt down a good word. Just one word that feels right. An adjective maybe. Or a name.

You picture yourself running around in your mind, arms outstretched, chasing a small word in block letters. "Come ON!" you demand. "It'll be FUN. What is WRONG with you?"

Eventually you might catch a word, but the satisfaction slinks away as the word glares at you. It doesn't perform. It just sulks there on the page alone, crossing its arms and hating you. It's not fun. It's just a pain in the ass, and you backspace it, half out of spite.

Forget words. How about an Idea? A word is such a specific, elusive creature; an idea can be led along much more happily. Just moments ago, there were a lot of ideas skating around in your head, graceful and strong and silver, like a spiderweb.

Your mind's hand drifts out to take one, but instead of sticking and blossoming, the idea goes limp and disintegrates. Just when you think you have one, it leaves. There's a terrible mental dryness leftover, like your head needs a drink. Maybe a stiff one.

So you sit there, staring at the blankness in front of you, feeling full of words, but unable to produce a single one. You stare at the blankness, frustrated and uncomfortable, and watch the moment tease you, and flee. The urge to write fades slowly as the irritation builds in its place.

There was something great there, you knew it, but now it's lost, gone, and it's not even your fault. The injustice. The frustration. The hurt.

Some call it writer's block. But that's not the most accurate description.


Thursday, December 26, 2013

A Paradigm Shift?

Last year it was Night Visions by Imagine Dragons. The year before was Ceremonials by Florence + the Machine. The year before that was Dead by April's self-titled album. This year? I'm struggling.

In the next few days, I need to buy my annual new album with the iTunes money I got over Christmas. This album will color my first few weeks of my spring sophomore year. It will affect what I write and how I write. It will give a different taste to whatever books I read. It will set the mood for the new year.

This is a big decision. I have to choose carefully. Something different enough that I don't get bored; something likable enough that I don't regret the purchase; something sad enough to draw me out; something powerful enough not to drag me down; something deep enough to touch my soul; something shallow enough to excite me.

This is the first year I've intentionally sought out an album. Night VisionsCeremonials, and Dead by April just kind of happened. I probably should have done the same thing this year, it's just that I actually don't know what to buy. Korn's newest album, The Paradigm Shift, is the album I've been waiting to buy, but I'm not sure if that's the album I want defining my new year.

Although I dunno, maybe it is XD

Huh. Maybe it is.

OneRepublic's Native is also in my sights, but their songs all tend to sound the same.

Do y'all do anything like this? Do you seek out albums to start off your new year?

If you've found an album recently that you love, I'm very open to suggestions!


Monday, December 23, 2013

Happy Things

I guess I just need this list.

Happy Christmas Things
1. Pancakes
2. Sugar cookies shaped like donkeys
3. Adorable smiles on snowmen and Santas
4. 24-hour Christmas music on the radio
5. Hot chocolate
6. Christmas stories with pictures
7. Sarah reading The Mortal Instruments trilogy and loving it
8. Children
9. Perfect bows on presents
10. Someone's face when they love your gift
11. Being warm in bed
12. Christmas songs {just not the horrible, depressing ones *cough* "Christmas Shoes" *cough*}
13. Footie pajamas
14. Finding out I got a 4.0 this semester :)


Thursday, December 19, 2013

Fragments IX

~ Today I looked at the space bar on my keyboard and noticed that it was only worn down on the the left side. Upon watching myself type, I have determined that I only use the space bar with my left thumb. How weird.

~ I had an odd reaction of -_- and laughter every time I see that Blue dog food commercial where the woman starts off with, "It takes a lot to get me angry. But I was furious when I read my dog's food bag and saw that chicken byproduct was the first ingredient." Really? It takes a lot to make you angry? And THAT is what pushes you over the edge?

~ I'm really glad that our culture seems to be leaning towards accepting/appreciating tattoos. Adults are always telling us that they give a bad impression and we'll regret them when we're older. Well, all those judgmental people will be gone soon, and then we can all express and love ourselves through ink.

~ Upon doing research for my literature exam, I kind of really want to name a daughter after an obscure literary term. Like Aisling or Arsis or Autelic(a). What? No? Aw.

~ Justin Bieber has decided to quit singing? Yeah. It's not like singing is his whole career. It's not like it's his dream. It's not like he's made movies about it. It's not like he pulls publicity stunts like this just to get attention. Nahhhh. He's really gonna quit.

~ I wrote another story that's coming true, and it's really not a good thing. I'm not sure if I should feel guilty, or enlightened. It's definitely making life hard.

~ "I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." ~ Voltaire. Yeah, A&E. And really, are you surprised that Phil Robertson doesn't sympathize with the homosexual population?


Wednesday, December 11, 2013


My little sister and I never believed in Santa as kids.  Mom did when she was little, and she loved it. However, Daddy felt extremely lied to when the truth came out, so he was determined not to put us through the same thing. Instead, Sarah and I were told that "the spirit of Santa," meaning giving joyfully, was very much real, but the guy at the North Pole with jacked up reindeer was just a story.

When I was little, I really wanted to believe in Santa. I felt kind of deprived of the magical wonder I saw in the eyes of my peers. Plus, it was hard being the only disillusioned one in a group of kids discussing what Santa would bring them. It could be exhausting to handle the infamous question "DO YOU BELIEVE IN SANTA??" Mostly I considered it an early exercise in creative truth-telling and redirection.

"Well, I always seem to get what I ask for."
"How else would the presents get there?"
"I'm sure my parents tell me the truth."
"I've read a lot about him."

Maybe it's why I'm so good at bullshitting now. Who knows.

I did slip up once. My cousin Kathleen, who's two years older than I am, grilled me about Santa Claus one year. I must've been five or six. She became frustrated with my creative non-answers and literally cornered me, demanding to know HOW ELSE WOULD THE PRESENTS GET THERE?! By that point I was pretty frustrated by her ignorance anyway, so I just out and told her.

"Look, Santa is not real. Your parents put the presents under the tree after you're asleep."

That knowledge really took a toll on her, and Aunt Celeste/her mom was not pleased with me. She took the matter up with my dad, who--I imagine--handled it with a brilliant blend of subtle sarcasm and a dry apology.

Still, I felt kinda bad and never slipped up again. {If only refraining from everything were that simple.}

Honestly, there were lots of times when I regretted not believing in Santa. I always wanted magic to be real, and sometimes tried to convince myself that Santa really did exist, that THAT was the lie my parents were telling me. When I was like fifteen I heard something on the roof on Christmas Eve and got really excited.

But, honesty again:  If my parents had told me that Santa was real, I would have had the same reaction as my dad. I would have felt tricked and betrayed and lied to. I would never {seriously, like, to-this-day-and-beyond kind of never} have trusted my parents again.

An extreme reaction? Definitely. But for better or for worse, that's the way my mind works. My parents definitely made a good call in the long run.

Eventually, I'm going to have to decide what to tell my own kids. I'm really torn as of now. For some kids, the belief in Santa can be fun and magical without a backlash of fury when the truth comes out. It's just that you have to make the call before you know what kind of kid it's going to be.

{I wonder if you could experiment on your kids. Tell one the truth but not the other and see what happens. Of course, the enlightened one would more than likely disillusion the other.}

With my luck, I'll probably have a kid just like me, so Santa will not be the way to go. But I guess my husband will get some say in the matter.

Haha, that's a good one...


Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Current Status

It is finals week.

Scope and Methods: Research Methods Class
When:  Tomorrow at noon
I Want:  An A. I've gotten 89s on every test in this class. One. More. Point, dammit.
I Expect: I mean, probably a freaking 89.
How That's Going: I mean...I've MADE the study guide. I haven't done what you'd call STUDY yet.

Environment Science
When:  Thursday at noon
I Want: A high B.
I Expect: A C or a D.
How That's Going: I spent this entire module in class texting and doing work for the above class. I don't even know what topics we covered. I have not done very well on the past two tests. I might be screwed.

American Literature II
When:  Friday at 8am
I Want: An A
I Expect: I don't know. An A or a B. She's made the format really different and hard for the final. She gave us some sample questions in class that blew my mind.
How That's Going: Um. Haven't started studying. But I got As on the first two tests and it's not cumulative. I'm not that worried.

Intro to Christianity
When:  Friday at 3pm
I Want: An A
I Expect: An A
How That's Going: Totally on schedule. The study guide is completely made, and I made 100 and 98 on the first two tests. No sweat.

Aaaaaaaaaaand yeah. That's what's up.


Monday, November 25, 2013

Lately I've Been..

...listening to these two songs on repeat. I can't put my finger on why, but they seem to go together.


Saturday, November 23, 2013

{Like, Love, Hate}

I did this tag almost three years ago...I glimpsed it while going through some old posts, and decided to do it quickly before reading my old answers. I wonder how I've changed.

12 Likes, 1 Love, 8 Hates.

I like chocolate milk.
I like singing harmony.
I like Dean Winchester.
I like deep, difficult questions.
I like how the bass feels in your chest at the club.
I like getting letters.
I like Batman.
I like exchanging knowing looks.
I like nightmares.
I like writing.
I like being at James's.
I like the TV show Friends.

I love... {Suddenly I'm petrified and unable to answer this question. I've only been given 1 Love. That's a lot of pressure. That's a lot of significance. That's serious.}

I hate gray area.
I hate the smell of beer.
I hate when people show me tons of Youtube videos.
I hate driving the speed limit.
I hate the show Ridiculousness.
I hate winter.
I hate feeling trapped.
I hate getting a tickle in my throat.

I'm curious as to why there's only one Love allowed, but then a bunch of Hates instead of Dislikes.

Click HERE to read my original answers. After reading them over, I've concluded two things:

1) I used to be a lot more interesting XD
2) I'll always hate feeling trapped.


Monday, November 18, 2013

Psychic Apples

All my life, I´ve read the "Betsy-Tacy" books, which is this fun series set in the early 1900s about a girl very much like me. When the girls are freshmen or sophomores in high school, they´re at a party and they play a game to reveal how a girl feels about a guy, or what´s going to happen between a certain girl and guy.

For the game, everyone eats an apple down to the core. Then you break your apple core (or a friend´s apple core) and say the name of the male to be explained. You count the seeds inside and recite this rhyme:

One, I love.
Two, I love.
Three, I love, I say.
Four, I love with all my heart.
Five, I cast away.
Six, He loves.
Seven, She loves.
Eight, They both love.
Nine, He comes.
Ten, He tarries.
Eleven, He courts.
And Twelve, he marries.

If you have more than twelve apple seeds in your core, you start over.

I love, love, LOVED playing this game with my apples when I was twelve or so. The apple was never wrong. Yes, I did love my best friend´s older brother, but did I really need an apple core to tell me that? Who knows. I guess I thought I did. I can´t remember ever getting any readings that were a revelation.

In the past couple of weeks, I´ve become obsessed with apples. I eat them all the time. They are my snack of choice, which is a lot better than chips. Unless, like, I want chips. Then I eat chips. But apples appeal to me surprisingly more often now.

Early into this college round of apple-eating obsession, I bit all the way into the core and saw some seeds and remembered this rhyme. I thought I would share it. It always makes me smile, and my stomach flutter if I ever break a core for anyone.

I did go ahead and play the game, and have been playing every time I eat an apple since. Still no revelations.

The apples know.

- Stephanie

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Fragments VIII

~ Sometimes I'm struck with sudden paranoia that someone can hear my thoughts. A stranger will give me a look of {probably unintentional} knowing, and I'm just like, "Oh my gosh. He can hear me. This is it. He's the one that books and movies talk about." However, to my knowledge, these random fits of delusion have never been accurate.

~ KoЯn's newest album, The Paradigm Shift, is really good.

~ I'm supposed to be going to see Thor today. We'll see.

~ I've seen couples on Facebook lately celebrating anniversaries or month-iversaries by posting their first picture together. Is that normal? I have no clue what pictures with anyone were my first.

~ Today
Bekah:  *nods at radiator* "Did Sam mess with your magnetic letters?"
Me:  o_o *whirls to look at letters* ... *sees expletive* "Oh no!" *knocks the F away and scrambles to find a D or a B or and L* "Saaaaam."
*we both collapse laughing*

~ Duck Dynasty makes me so happy. It's so funny and wholesome. It's one of my favorite things ever. I would like a Duck Dynasty sweatshirt, if any of you were thinking of sending me an early Christmas present. {Because I'm already certain that all of you are planning to give me timely Christmas gifts.}

~ Today I learned that it's possible to give birth to twins with different baby daddies. I don't really know how to feel about this information, but I'm pretty sure I'm fascinated and my mind is blown.

~ Dear You Know Who You Are, Dexter is back on Netflix.

~ Bekah refers to people who have one white parent and one black parent as "mixed." I haven't heard that term much, and it sounds rude and degrading to me. One of my best friends growing up had a white mom and an African-American dad. We always said she was "half-black," as did she herself. Does anyone know the preferred term for this situation? Does it depend? Is "mixed" as rude as it sounds to me?

~ Even though it's been like three years since I even remember this song was a thing, I woke up this morning with THIS playing through my head. What in the world.


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

When Stephanie Proofreads

Sure, I'll proofread your paper! I'm an English nerd; I kinda like this stuff C:

Mmmmmkay. You just used every form of there/they're/their in the same paragraph. None of them are correct. Not one time.

Then =/= Than. "Mr. Darcy was more proud then Elizabeth." I highly doubt Mr. Darcy was initially arrogant before morphing into Elizabeth.


 Okay yeah. I've read that sentence five times and I still don't know what you're saying. *deep breath* Read number six...

Oh god. You said "heroin." Heh. You just called Elizabeth Bennett a narcotic analgesic.

Awww yis. Subject-verb agreement. That's my girl.

Every time you use an apostrophe to pluralize, a kitten dies.

 Okay, okay. I can do this. I do actually like this. And I actually like this person. I can do this.

 I changed my mind. You misused "literally." I don't want to live on this planet anymore.


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Just Another Tuesday Night


*ahem* You see, w'ha'happen wuz...

Mostly I'm just retarded. I was in a really good mood while texting a guy last week, and I agreed to have dinner with him at his apartment. I think I was maybe annoyed at someone and made the plan on purpose. {I swear, I have actually got to stop doing that.}

Honestly, though, I don't know why I said yes. I can't come up with a real explanation at all.

I'd been worried about the "dinner date" since this weekend. What if we were all alone? What if he came on to me? What if he was an actual creep? What if I was in danger? What if the food was disgusting? What if I got lost trying to find the place? What if it was awkward and I couldn't figure out how to leave?


I'd been stressing/whining to Gerard about it all day. He told me that it was probably going to be fun, but that if I felt uncomfortable or something went wrong, I just had to call him.

I was grudgingly moved by that gesture of reassurance.

I did have trouble finding the place {big surprise there}, and dinner was kinda awkward. We made fettuccine alfredo and cheese biscuits. He talks way too quietly to be heard by human ears, and is not a huge conversationalist anyway. I talked enough and was easy-going and not awkward, if I do say so myself.

He suggested we go upstairs and watch a movie while we ate. I sighed inwardly and agreed, because there was no good way around it.

We settled on The Fox and the Hound. I was glad because it was only like an hour and a half long and I still had studying to do and a lab write-up to finish.

At about 45 minutes into it, I felt arm touching my shoulder.


I actually don't know the right way to handle that. When I was thirteen I would just get up and move XD Tonight I just leaned forward, which worked for a little while, until he put his arm right around my waist and I realized I would have been better off leaning back, confining his reach to my shoulders.

Oh well. You live and learn.

Finally the movie ended at 10pm, and I heard the hallelujah chorus in my head.

I got my coat, thanked him for dinner, and headed out to the car. He said he'd walk me out. That was fine. I mean, you could literally have reached out and touched the Kia from the porch, but I appreciated the gesture.

I opened the car door and turned to hug him. We hugged, and though I didn't necessarily have reason to be wary, I kept my face turned carefully to the left, just in case...

Yeah. There were lips on my cheek.

Before I'd decided what to say, I had my hand planted gently on his chest and the sound "Uhn-uh" came out of my mouth.

"What?" he said.

I repeated the sound.

"Can I get a cheek kiss?" he asked.


"You got a boyfriend?"

"...no, but close enough that it'd be weird."

"Alright," he said. "Well, we should still do this again sometime."

"Okay," I said. "It was fun."

And after that scene, I honestly believed the statement. Now that he'd come onto me and I'd rejected him, what else was there to fear?

Sometimes, the worst that can happen is also the best.

It wasn't until I was almost back at the dorm that my statement came flashing back into my mind:  "close enough that it'd be weird."

And I couldn't for the life of me decide what I had meant.


Sunday, November 3, 2013

A Non-Existent Character

Suddenly, everyone I know on Facebook is posting stuff about what to look for in a husband, and how to find God's match for you, and the "non-negotiable" qualities a husband must have, and what marriage is all about, and how God needs to be our everything before we look for another person.

It's getting old. Real old.

But, after reading lists of shockingly similar and almost arbitrary suggested "non-negotiable" qualities, I decided to make my own list.

Obviously, it's ridiculously specific and I do not expect to find a guy who possesses every one of these characteristics. I'm so okay with that. But I feel like this gives me something interesting to hold in my mind.

Stephanie's List of Desirable Guy Qualities (in mostly no particular order)
1. Christian
2. musician {note:  not "plays an instrument." I think playing an instrument and being a musician are different things.}
3. can dance
4. dark hair
5. good singing voice
6. likes to read
7. self-motivated
8. in good shape
9. knows what he wants to do with his life
10. knows how to make his dreams a reality
11. loves Disney
12. has a sense of irony
13. has the same sense of humor as me
14. knows when to stop
15. likes kids
16. plays a sport
17. stubborn
18. able to converse in an engaging and effective manner with people of all ages
19. a science or math person, maybe
20. likes to argue
21. pretty eyes
22. honest {includes keeping promises as well as not lying}
23. crooked smile
24. expressive eyebrows
25. will fight for those he loves
26. taller than me
27. tan
28. Having done drugs is not a problem, but he has to be morally against them now.
29. mindful of money
30. Chivalrous. Opens doors, walks a girl home/to her car/to her dorm, sits on the outside at restaurants, walks next to the road, carries stuff, pays for stuff.
31. unselfish
32. not in the military
33. cusses occasionally and artfully
34. can start a real fire
35. can tie real knots
36. good/similar taste as me in music
37. doesn't disrespect his girlfriend when talking to his friends
38. can help me with writing
39. good with directions
40. assertive
41. good grasp of grammar
42. hard-working
43. confident
44. understands me
45. patient {I'm not talking about the angelic sort of patience, but the calm, persistent kind of patience}
46. observant
47. not a Yankee
48. politically conservative
49. adventurous
50. writes letters

Anyone else interested in sharing some qualities/characteristics they look for?


Friday, November 1, 2013

Fragments VII

~ After having to go through six million posts every time I want to write a Fragments post so I'll know what number it is, I have finally created a label called "Fragments." Brilliant.

~ Carrying a case of water bottles up to my dorm room makes me Level 8 angry. More on that later.

~ The horrifying moment when I scan my Facebook newsfeed and see more girls dressing up their babies for Halloween than their pets.

~ I've always sworn I wouldn't marry someone in the military.  Don't get me wrong, I have so much respect for them. They can't be thanked and honored enough. However, I'm entirely too selfish to have a husband who's in the military. The worry, the loneliness, the moving around... No.

~ When I get really uncomfortable or worried or have to try really hard around people, my legs actually break out in hives. It's horrid.

~ An adult messaged me on Facebook the other day saying that a photo I shared "used the F- word." It took me ten full minutes of scanning and searching and clicking on photos to figure out that the aforementioned photo had come from the "I fucking love science" page. The "F- word" was not contained in the photo, but in the understated tag that gives its origin. The actual photo was hilarious and perfectly clean. I did not respond to the message. I still don't know what to say.

~ Okay, I just responded. I said "Oh, I definitely didn't notice that when I shared it! I'm very sorry."

~ I always wonder how inappropriately a student has to dress before a professor says something to her. Is there a policy? Does it depend on the professor? How would that even go?

~ Every time I hear the word "penetrate," I hear "Notttttt a good enough reason to use the word 'penetrate'" in my head.

~ I just turned in a paper that's been dominating my life for a week, and my mind for a month. Ha. Lle. Lu. Jah.

~ Spelling "hallelujah" is hard enough when it's not punctuated syllabically.

~ I think I just made up a word.

~ I think I should sleep.

~ I think PC is visiting today.

~ Actually, I'm mostly positive that he is, I just wanted to keep parallel sentence structure.

~ Stephanie

Sunday, October 27, 2013

In Which I Reward Your Curiosity that Was Pequed the First Time a Post Contained the Ridiculous Phrase "In Which"

In case you didn't follow that, this post is about Anthony, the guy who I thought maybe liked me and I didn't know what to do with that. Well, things have taken a turn...

For the better. He brought up the issue himself, rather nicely. Something like "So, I just want to be honest with you... I have feelings for you, which was probably really obvious. I try to be pretty straightforward about these things."

And I told him something like "I'm really glad you said something. I think you're great and I really want to keep getting to know you, but I move incredibly slowly and I'm in a weird place with the guy dated, so I don't want to lead you on."

Result:  He was totally okay with it. And a few days later, when the idea of commitment issues popped up, I accidentally let it out that I have major, major, debilitating issues with commitment. I immediately wanted to bite my tongue off, because I'm sure I sounded like a raving lunatic, but it didn't phase him.

"About that," he began easily. "I so respect your slow pace. I've made mistakes jumping into things in the past, and I'm done with that. I'm gonna be honest..." He laughed. "...if you'd met me two years ago, I would not have had the patience for this. But now...I dunno, I'm okay with it."


So then we just talked about Lord of the Rings and struggling with accusations of arrogance for the next hour. And then he walked me back to my dorm room in the freezing cold even though he's almost worse with cold than I am.

He still hasn't gotten within a foot of me. Guys like that are a dying breed.


Friday, October 25, 2013

Sensitive? ...Nah

I don't cry particularly often. However, in the past two weeks, a completely unprecedented number of things have brought me to, or close to, tears. I ask you:

What the heck?

Things That Have Made Me Feel Like Crying
1. An episode of the Twilight Zone
2. The fact that no one listens to my adorable environmental science professor
3. My parents being controlling
4. My throat hurting
5. "Atlas" by Coldplay
6. A picture of two cute bunnies
7. The ramen bowl breaking
8. Seeing a commercial for the series finale of What Not to Wear
9. The Springboks winning the Rugby World Cup in "Invictus"
10. Hearing that a bunch of Justin's friends are bailing on his birthday party
11. The Andy Griffith Show

Thankfully, only two of these things resulted in actual waterworks. Hopefully I'm not becoming, like, sensitive or something XD


Wednesday, October 16, 2013

My Autumn

I never know what it is, but it happens every autumn.

It starts in my toes and rises up through my body, tickling and pulling and poking:  a profound restlessness that makes me feel young. Not the wild, powerful kind of "young," but the nostalgic, vaguely uncomfortable sensation of being a child trapped in a nineteen-year-old's body.

Every year.

It's the air, crisp and charged with promise. Great, obscure secrets ride the cool breeze. All the edges are sharper; all the lights are clearer; all the impressions are warmer. The sky is bluer than it's ever been.

There's a creative urgency. Beauty so thick that inspiration can't quite break through. Ideas pulse beneath the surface of the world, giving the air its own heartbeat.

Everything whispers.

Childhood whispers. Remember leaf piles? Remember running? Remember dark woods? Remember notebooks? Remember heart friends? Remember tears? Remember stories?

It feels like chilly fingers and smoke-scented sweatshirts. It feels like hiding. It feels like spying. It feels like being chased.

It's a lens through which the present seems abrupt and irrelevant. The urgency drains from school and flows to old thoughts and old fears and old worries.

Remember learning Gaelic? Remember researching drugs? Remember refusing to get your ears pierced?

Remember needing Him in your soul? Remember Sunny? Remember staying at Gr'anne's house?

Remember losing your imagination? Remember outgrowing your fire fairy costume? Remember exceeding your texting limit?

Things that have nothing to do with autumn drift across my mind. Summer memories and spring pains. Christmas woes and birthday adventures. Something in the air brings them back.

Every year.

And then, like smoke, the feeling tints and twists and dissipates into the air.

That's my autumn, every year.


Monday, October 14, 2013

In Which I Bring You More Drama

After I took a shower when we got home from camping, I started to feel sick. The sneezing, the aching, the itchy sore throat, the exhaustion. It felt like what I'd had at the beach with PC's family. That sickness that lasted like three or four weeks and never really got identified. I went to the Fair with PC, Sophie, Anna, and Jordan anyway. I felt really awful, but we did have fun.

I spent all of fall break with PC. Wednesday afternoon, dinner. All day Thursday, all day Friday, all day Saturday, all day Sunday. Now that I think about it, I know that was too much, even though I was also with my family. It was too much PC for them. It's just that I like him, and he makes me feel better when I'm sick. He takes the best care of me.

Because I was sick, I spent Sunday night at home and drove back for my 11am on Monday.

After everyone went to bed Sunday night, PC stayed and helped me pack. It was about 11:20pm when Mom came stomping down the stairs.

"WHAT are you doing?" she demanded.

"I'm pack--"

"YOU--" she glared at me "--need to go to SLEEP. If you're SICK."

"He's just helping me pack," I said. "I'm gonna be fine. It's gonna be fine. I'll get enough sleep."

I don't remember if anything else was said, really. I may have said something like, "Just let me handle things." I know she ended with, "We'll talk about this later," and stalked away.

PC also apparently left the garage door open all night, which she told me this morning. Guess he's shit listed for sure now.

My family is driving me terrible places. This is not about PC. He just happens to be a tangible manifestation of what's going on in my life. My parents want what's best for me, I know. But they're stressing me out and making me want to run in the opposite direction.

They want me to not see PC so much and not have "bad" friends and never cuss and go to every church function and get amazing grades and find a "grown-up" boyfriend and not show my stomach and not go clubbing and not dance with people and sit around with them while they ignore me and never disagree with them.

However, their rigid disapproval of my (MY MY MY MY MY, dammit ) decisions sparks an automatic desire to go streaking in the opposite direction. That's my initial reaction to confinement. It makes me just want to have sex with PC and only hang out with "bad" friends and cuss and skip church and screw school and get tattoos and more piercings and go back to labeling myself as "dating" PC and wear sleazy clothing and club every weekend and grind my body on boys and completely cut my family out of my life.

But the thing is, I don't REALLY want those things! All I want is to not have to hide the fact that PC and I still sit close together sometimes and his touch doesn't make my skin crawl. I want to be able to choose my own friends--some "good" and some "bad"--and stay the same strong-principled individual I know I am. I want to use cuss words when I want to, which means sparingly when furious or for comedic effect. I want to go to the church functions that I connect with. I want to do my best in school and not feel judged when I decide to let question 26 D go for now. I want the freedom to date whoever the fuck I want, and if that ends up being PC again, I'll have good reason, so respect my decision, please. I want to wear clothes that, within reason, fit the event I'm attending. I want to go clubbing and dance with people and not believe that that means I'm going to Hell. I want to feel free from the crushing, priggish, pedantic, discouraging, conditional oversight of my family.

I know they want what's best for me, and I know they're most likely right. But if that's the case, and they truly believe that, then BACK OFF AND LET ME FIGURE IT OUT FOR MYSELF.

I know things will be different when I'm a parent, but I like to think I won't handle my kids like this.

On the bright side, Monya says she doesn't think I'm crazy or actually depressed. I expected to feel relieved and validated if I heard that. Instead, I feel lost and disappointed.


Tuesday, October 8, 2013

In Which I Process My Thoughts and Beg for Advice

{I hate to post this right on top of that cool Letter From My Eighteen-Year-Old Self thing, but this issue is driving me off the cliff of insanity.}

Dear Guy Who Likes Me,

You're really attractive. We have incredibly similar taste in movies, music, and TV shows. We're both good with talking. So far, I've said yes when you've asked me to hang out. But now, the Me in me is rising up and I'm freaking out.

So yeah. This has to stop.

~The Girl From Envs-111

*sigh* I know, I know. I could make a problem out of winning the lottery.

See, he's a really cool guy, but by continuing to say yes to hanging out with him alone, I'm inching my way closer to a situation I'm not ready to be in:  TALKING to someone {AKA, that cesspool of gray area between "freedom" and "romantic commitment."}.

There are countless problems with that situation.

1. I move slower than any other female in the world. I guarantee you this guy is expecting to kiss me sometime sooner than "months and months and months from now, if ever."

2. I still have a long way to go before I can seriously "like" someone. I know it's been like six months {Huh. Almost to the day.}, but I still play the comparison game and my heart hasn't grown back to a size where I can spare enough to give some to another person.

3. I mean, I have general commitment issues. Like really, really, really bad ones.

4. He's going into the military. I know it's really early even to be throwing this out there, but I'm not going to marry someone going into the military. I respect, support, and honor our troops, but I'm way too selfish to have a soldier for a husband.

5. I don't know if he's a Christian or not, but I'm 75% sure he isn't, and that's an instant deal-breaker.

6. He drinks. Like, he's not a raging drunk--he just gets drunk on the weekends--but that's not for me. I don't necessarily have a huge problem with people doing that, but I am not going to date someone who does, especially if he's underage.

7.  Yesterday I overheard him confess to someone that he doesn't have any rhythm. I'm still not sure why that instantly triggered the thought, Okay cool. Now there's DEFINITELY no way, but it did.

8. He's not that funny. He IS funny, but he's not THAT funny. He laughs too much at himself, and isn't particularly clever or iconic.

9. He's a little annoying. It comes from the laughing too much in the middle of his own stories. Maybe the laughs aren't forced, but they feel that way, like he's breathing out so hard his lungs are going flat.

{Yes, I realize I'm a tough crowd. Cue the Forever Alone images. Actually, you know what, I got this:

He definitely has good points. He makes good grades, knows what he wants to do with his life, is a serious gentleman {hasn't gotten within a foot of me and opens every door possible, including car doors}, has good taste {movies, TV shows, music, video games}, and is really attractive. However, those don't outweigh the other issues, especially the fact that I'm just not ready for a relationship.

I need to tell him that I think he's great, but that I move at the pace of a lame snail, and am not ready for a serious relationship anyway.

I just don't know WHEN I have to tell him that. I don't want to tell him too soon and seem scary and arrogant and mean. But I also don't want to lead him on; that's even meaner.

Advice would be so appreciated, guys. This is literally keeping me up at night, and I'm really tired.


To Be Read On October 8th, 2013

I wrote this to myself a year ago. I'm now going to respond to it, in the green italics.

Hey, 19-year-old Stephanie. Is it weird that I feel really young and insignificant writing this? I mean, it definitely is. It's not like you have all the answers to life and I don't. I mean, my 13-year-old self thought my 16-year-old self was going to be the shit, and she wasn't, so you're probably not THAT much more awesome than I am now either.

I'm not XD Definitely some though. I'm more confident and more difficult to scare/make uncomfortable. I'm about 25% as naive as I was when you wrote this. I'm pretty okay with that.

I do seriously wonder where you're going to college though. Did you stay at Campbell? I'm afraid you might have. If you did, I hope you're happy and proud of that choice.  I really do. No sarcasm. If you're now at Wake Forest, HALLELUJAH! You did it! You are living out your black and gold soul, carrying on a legacy, and earning a degree you will be proud to claim for the rest of your life.

I am, in fact, still at Campbell. From what I've heard, Wake Forest is really preppy and difficult, and let's face it, 56k a year with no merit scholarship was never going to happen. I'm pretty happy at Campbell :) Good people, good professors. It really is in the middle of freaking nowhere though...

I also wonder if you're fat. Isn't that terrible? Like, I'm pretty afraid you might be, and if you are, I am 100% certain that I just ruined your day by asking that. If you're not, HALLELUJAH! Stay thin. Work out. Food isn't that good. If you are, don't freak out.  Find an exercise buddy, eat better, and get enough sleep. Make a chart. Remember how much you love dance? Dance.

I am not "fat." I've definitely gain weight and I hate my body, but hey, what's new. I am going to crossfit semi-regularly though. We did chest presses with 40lb today. I almost died. I'd love to have a workout buddy, but Justin is the closest thing I have.

DANCE. Good God, have you figured out how to dance? Hopefully you're in a dance class and getting better. If you're not...

I am dancing! :D In fact, you'll love to know that I'm known across campus as "the white girl who can dance." Sometimes it's embarrassing and annoying, but being recognized for dance is kind of a dream come true. As far as classes go, I did jazz dance last semester, and I'm in tap now. I'm definitely getting better. "Intro to Tap" my ass. It's HARD.

*sigh* I'm really afraid of offending you. So far all I've done is criticize your choices and body weight. I do apologize. There are things that are much more important to me. Like your friends. And Sam.

You're fine XD It´s seriously hard to offend me. Being friends with Gerard and Justin has made me thick-skinned.

Do you have good friends? I'm struggling right now. Gabe and Kirsten and I just had dinner last night, and being around them made me realize how much I miss being my real self. I hope you have friends that you can be your real self around.  There's a really cool person inside of me, I know, and I hope you've been able to find her.

I DO have good friends! :D I have several. Gerard is good for late-night philosophy, so long as he doesn't hit on me too much. Anna is good for a listening ear and a girl friend struggling with similar issues. Bekah is good for clubbing and having fun. Justin is good for a pick-me-up and a dance partner. Sean is good to have around in awkward situations. Anthony...mostly just complicates things at this point, but hopefully that gets better real fast.

I think...I've been finding my real self. She comes and goes, but I think on the whole, it really is three steps forward two steps back. Progress is being made. I have a writing project I'm currently excited about. I may have found a small group that I love.

Also, where's Sam? At home, I think. Does that question make you wince? Nope. Does it make you grit your teeth? No. Do you pass your eyes over it and decide not to answer? No. Do you delete it?  No. Why would I do that? Deleting stuff just defeats the purpose of this post. Does it make you sad-smile? Nooooo. Goshhhhh. Actually huh. Maybe a little bit. Does it make you real-smile? Not...really. Are you guys about to celebrate a year-and-a-half of being together? No.

If you're not...what happened? Did he find someone else first, or did you? Did you have a massive argument? Do you still talk to him at all? He's my best friend, 19-year-old Stephanie. Please don't disregard that. Remember, unless he brutally murdered your family for no good reason, you have to love him and be there for him.

We just...faced the truth, for the first time. Dating was wrong for us when we did it. We didn't follow through with our promises, we didn't stick by our principles; there were a lot of lies that prevented things from developing in a healthy way.

He did not find anyone else.

I also did not find anyone else.

We have had several massive arguments, however they've all taken place since we've broken up XD

Of course I talk to him, 18-year-old, Steph :) He's my best friend too.

Is there someone else? Did you fall in love again? What a weird thought. I have trouble writing this, because I'm thinking about 19-year-old Sam reading it. {That is a weird concept. Why is it so hard to imagine Sam being nineteen years old? D: What if he dies before he gets that old? Is that what my psychic self is telling me? Ah D:}

There's no one else. There are some people who have expressed interest, but I'm me, so that's not going anywhere yet.

No, I didn't fall in love again. I so understand your having trouble writing this. I was afraid of what you might have written, to be honest.

And yeah, I also have trouble imagining Sam as a nineteen year old :P But he is still alive, you paranoid, paranoid person.

Are you still as weird as I am? Oh jeez. Just as weird and THEN SOME.

Do you write? Yes :)

Do you still wear your hair naturally? I don't think I've straightened it once since becoming a sophomore.

What kind of makeup do you wear?

*siiiiiiiiiiiigh* Right now I wear Hard Candy's "Little Black Dress" felt tip eyeliner ONLY ON THE TOP because it's possibly the last of its kind. I seriously cannot find this eyeliner anywhere in stores or online. It's a constant source of grief. Constant.

Does Sarah have a boyfriend? She's a junior. That's weird.

No. I want her to date Justin though. I think. He can be brutally impatient, which would destroy her, so we'll see.

How's Cassidy? How's Ellie? How's Kirsten? How are Momma and Daddy?

Cassidy is pretty good :) She's doing well in school and still thinking about her plans for next year. We're still close. Thank you for not being so pessimistic and ridiculous as to ask if we're still friends.

 Ellie's...I mean, she's married. She's honestly the exact same person she's been since seventh grade.

Kirsten's good :) She's actually planning to not play tennis next year, and she's possibly also transferring to Carolina...that would be sad and strange, but I never see her anyway. She lives in Faculty.

Mom and Daddy are good. They're team-teaching Challenge I. Daddy did the triathlon again. Mom's a workout beast.

Do you still paint your nails? I don't very often any more, so you probably almost never do.

I haven't painted my fingernails in about two and a half months actually. I'm trying to get the layers to grow out. I've heard painting your nails/polish remover is really bad for them. So far that appears to be true. They've been improving since I quit painting them.

Are you a virgin? I hope to God you are.

Um. Like, yes.

Oh, have you ever tasted alcohol? I hope to God you haven't.


Drugs? Nah. Like, I'm not even worried about that.

Yeah, not even close.

Who's Bekah going out with? Are y'all still friends? Did drama ensue?

Reafe, the Canadian-Jamaican soccer player. We are still friends. No drama, really. She tends to steal guys away from me, but it's not difficult because I don't try to hold onto them anyway.

Do you still love Batman?


I know this is a weird question, but do you know that guy Hunter? {From Campbell. A year older than you. Was the Narrator in Mafia that first week you were at college.} I just have this weird feeling about him, like I've totally seen him before and he's important. I have not told a single person this. Is he important? Or do you not even remember who he is?

I have not forgotten about him. I see him occasionally. We have not yet spoken.

Is Licorice alive?

She passed away about a month ago actually. We buried her at the farm.

How are you and God? I pretty much really hope you're tight.

We've been better; we've been worse.

How long is your hair?

Two inches past shoulders-ish. I think o_o

Do you like Converse shoes still? I mean, I assume you do. It's not like you've gotten a personality transplant.

Yes. I now have black, charcoal, gray, red, tan, red hightops, and Batman. Right now I have neon green laces in the gray ones.

Any more piercings? Tattoos?

No, but I still definitely want a tattoo. So badly. I just have to know what.

Sam asks if you still have elf ears. Do you? Or did you get an industrial bar and fuck one of them up?

I do :) I did not get an industrial. Yet.

Oh, do you cuss? Like, regularly?

Not like a lot of people, but no one flinches when I cuss. Except Justin. He likes to make a big deal out of it. Like a really monumental deal. {Justin:  O_O *grins in shock and waves arms and jumps/bounces* "Ohhhhhhhhhhhh you said a curse wordddddddd. Do it again! Say it again! Please. Do it. Please."}

Do you still sleep with Happy, Real Blank and Charles? {Again, I assume so. You ARE still me, after all.}


Oh, what's your current favorite song? Band?

Ooh. Hm. I dunno. Lemme give you some variety:  "Atlas" by Coldplay; "Dig" by Incubus; "Holy Grail" by Jay-Z and Justin; {I'm so tired right now. I can't even think.}


Prolly "The Magicians."

I should go. I have a government test to study for tomorrow. I have not studied hardly at all. I can't figure out why I'm not nervous. I also have like 40 pages of Western Civ to read.

I love you, but god yes, stop asking questions. You don't even exist anymore, and 19-year-old Stephanie has Scope homework to do at some point. Same professor as you had for that government test. Good ol' Dr. Thornton. I hope they let me keep him as my adviser when I switch majors to English.

I miss Sam. I miss talking to him. Do you miss him too? No matter what's going on, that's a legitimate question. Answer it.

Yes. I miss Sam a lot. But I'll see him in two days so it's relatively cool.

Alright, I'll let you go. Make me proud. Don't forget me. But be yourself. Your 19-year-old self. Don't live for me. I'm dead. You're alive. Live for you, now.

:) You were pretty cool, 18. Thanks for this blast from the past. Good questions, really. Thanks for getting me where I am today. Couldn't have done it without you XD

Carpe diem :)

I shall.


Thursday, October 3, 2013

The Twenty-Teens

The Sixties

The Seventies

The Eighties

The Nineties

Ever wonder how our kids will caricature the twenty-teens for their spirit weeks and dances and Halloween costumes? Honestly, I'm excited for it. I think it'll be great. And easy. Our generation is so fun and wild and colorful and deliciously extreme.

All you really have to do is dress in awesomely bright colors.

 And remember that You Only Live Once.

 And have an unexplained thing with mustaches. 

 And not care about judgment or morals too much, because the former is wrong and the latter doesn't exist because nothing is wrong.
Don't forget to work your ass off. As literally as you can manage.

 Let go and go hard. Colorfully.

A lot.

And if all else fails, at least take a selfie.

Really, I think our generation is probably doing a lot wrong, but if/when we fall, it's going to be a beautiful disaster.


Monday, September 30, 2013

A Timeless Question

Is all fair in love and war?

I started this post with the intention of presenting both sides. "No, all is NOT fair in love and war, however here are some scenarios where maybe "unfair" actions are justified..."

But I couldn't do that, and have since deleted my feeble, grasping attempts. ALL is not ever fair in love OR war. Fairness and unfairness, justice and injustice legitimately exist in every situation in my mind--love and war included.

{However, one draft of this post contained a sentence that I kinda liked:  "Obviously I believe the same principle should protect me from all the man-stealing attention whores out there, slogging through the filth of their own lives." I'm in a really good mood right now, but somehow that strongly-worded sentence still popped into my mind.}

I remember wrestling with the question when I was eleven or twelve. I went back and forth, imagining myself in different situations, trying to see if there were times when I would justify actions that would normally be unfair. I honestly can't remember which opinion I settled on, or if I ever settled at all. I'm sure I tried to convince myself at some point that all WAS fair in love and war, if for no other reason than to be dramatic.

But no. I don't care how much I love a guy, if he's dating someone else, it is not fair for me to go after him. I don't care how much you love a girl, it's not fair for you to spread rumors about her crush so that she'll go for you instead.

This also means that if someone acts unfairly towards YOU in the name of their love, you still aren't allowed to react unjustly to them. Sorry.

War is a little harder for me to paint black and white. Where do you draw the line between "cleverly taking a tactical advantage," and "being dishonorable and underhanded"? I'm not sure, but I don't have to determine that in order to say that there ARE some things that are unfair even in war.

Using kids as ferries for bombs to make the enemy hesitant to eliminate the threat? NOT FAIR, VIETNAM.

Somehow this post/thought feels incomplete to me, but I really have nothing more to say.

What do you guys think? Is all fair in love and war?


Thursday, September 26, 2013

College Cravings

*happy sigh* You know, I could really go for some chocolate milk right now.

I wish I had some. But I don't. I guess I could go buy some, but I'd really rather not deal with that right now.


Ahh, I really want something though. I'll go the healthy route. Craisins.

*eats craisins*

Okay, no. That's not even close to anything I felt like eating.

Well, I have yogurt. And cocoa puffs. That's dairy and chocolate, sort of. If my taste buds squint really hard, maybe that will scratch the same itch as chocolate milk.

*eats yogurt and cocoa puffs*

Awesome. Yeah. That was good. Well, kind of. It was food that tasted nice. But it was all smooth and sort of tasteless... I wish I had something salty. And crunchy. I want chips.

*eats chips*

Cool. These are good. Wow. I'm so thirsty now. What have I got? Tea. That has caffeine and it's midnight. Damn. Water?

*drinks water*

I don't want water. And I have a little bit of heartburn. You know what I could really go for right now?

Chocolate milk.


*goes and buys chocolate milk*

Moral of the story:  Sometimes only one thing will do, so save yourself the heartache and useless calories and JUST BUY THE DAMN CHOCOLATE MILK.


Sunday, September 22, 2013


This made me laugh XD


Open it in a new tab and magnify it, I guess. I dunno why it won't come up big enough to see.

~ Stephanie

Friday, September 20, 2013

a september eighteenth evening

the playlist that blew me away...

Demons ~ Imagine Dragons
Reel 1 (Diary) ~ Angels & Airwaves
The River Flows in You ~ Yiruma
Cemeteries of London ~ Coldplay
Castle of Glass ~ Linkin Park
Eyes Be Closed ~ Washed Out
Amsterdam ~ Imagine Dragons
Reel 6 ~ Angels & Airwaves
Breathe Me ~ Sia
The Little Things Give You Away ~ Linkin Park
Speed of Sound ~ Coldplay
Take a Picture ~ Filter
Dig ~ Incubus
Reel 5 (New Blood) ~ Angels & Airwaves
In Between ~ Linkin Park

it was a good night, y'all.


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

I Did Study Eventually


What do people who aren't writers feel instead of inspiration? When they look up and the sky is clear and the breeze is soft and every breath feels like laughter? When the room is dark and the songs bleed passion and the energy makes you want to cry? When the line is funny and the smile is crooked and the sounds of life clutter your ears?

Surely they don't feel NOTHING. Surely writers don't just have a sixth sense, a tap into a whole separate layer of life.

That is what it feels like, though. Like a runner's high. You break through and everything is different. You access a different layer of experience. Everything is beautiful. Everything. Even things you recognize, and would describe as, ugly are beautiful in that Writer way. It's like you're made of goosebumps.

It's weird, because while you want to be so completely present, tap into every single aspect of the world right then, you also don't want to be disturbed, involved. Like, for God's sake, don't talk to me. Just exist and leave me alone and let me revel in the fact that you're alive, and I'm alive, and everything about life is so...delightful.

I wonder if I'm even allowed to talk like this. I don't follow through on my stories; most of my papers end up being pretty halfassed. The only times I write consistently are on my blog and in my journal, and those aren't avenues for "real" writers. Anyone can--and does--do those things.

 But honestly, I do FEEL like a writer. And I don't think that feeling can be wrong. Anyone who writers is a writer, by definition.

But then you have Writers. A Writer is a Writer no matter what she does or where she goes or how she feels. It's as inescapable as being female. Sometimes you might not feel feminine; sometimes you might hate the hassles of being a girl; sometimes you can pretty successfully conduct yourself like a guy. But you're a female, and at the end of the day you have to come back to it.

A Writer is not defined by her occupation, or how she dresses, or how many words a day she can crank out. A Writer is defined by how her mind works, and the existence of those delightful, goosebump moments where the world collides with her mind in a breathtaking array of impressions.

I am a Writer not because I write, but because...I am.

{Well then. SOMEONE was feeling pretentious yesterday XD}


Sunday, September 15, 2013


After nineteen years of being told "you worry too much," "you care too much," "don't be so uptight," and "just chill out," it is incredibly strange to be repeatedly accused of the opposite.

It's true. I don't care very much anymore. Not in a depressed, sleeping all day, refusing to wear real clothes kind of way, but in a spontaneous, shallow, slightly cynical way. I don't want to tell anyone that I love them anymore. I don't want to make plans just to talk. I don't want to get involved in a campus ministry. I don't want to seek out counseling.

I have plenty of fun, but I'm frighteningly apathetic about things that should be important to me, including myself. Sam and Cassidy have really wanted me to talk to a counselor for a long time, for a lot of reasons, but I haven't done it.

Sam feels like I don't care enough to do what's right for me. I don't care enough to look my problems in the eye and DO SOMETHING because I'm emotionally lazy. He feels like I've lost my strong sense of direction, and even the desire to get it back.

Cassidy thinks I don't care because I don't value myself enough. I have so little respect for and confidence in myself that I don't even want to try. I see myself as a lost cause, one too weak even to strive for what's right.

I dreamed last night that Justin told me I had to be more careful of people. Just because I don't care doesn't mean I can assume no one else does either. My apathy is hurting people.

Even Sam's friend James sees it. I barely know James, but in talking to him last night, he gently told me that I can't just "wait for my conflicts to work themselves out."

Everyone has different motives and interpretations of what my issue is, but I think everyone can agree that I majorly need to get my shit together. The only problem?

I can't make myself care.

I don't want to sound like a cliche charity case, but I think Cassidy's right. I recognize that certain things I do are wrong, but I know I won't stop doing them. I sit in church and take notes, but feel nothing. It's good stuff, it really is, but I know I won't apply it. I've gone too far to save myself. I just don't think it matters anymore. I am where I am, and it's past the point where turning around will even do any good.

I know that God specializes in just such cases, but one does have to LET him. I can't meet him halfway right now. I can't meet him a fourth of the way. I don't even think I could walk with him if he took my hand. I need to be DRAGGED out of this rut, but no one can do it for me.

I wish this post were a battle cry. I wish it would end with some lines like, "But you know what? That attitude ends today. I am worth this fight, and with God's help, I can be the best Stephanie this world has ever seen."

But it won't. It'll end with "I realize that my apathy is killing me and those around me, but the thing about apathy is that you just can't care."


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Five Ways

I'm not always the easiest person to be friends with. A lot of people plain don't like me. So if you're one of those people just looking for a way out, here is the post for you.

Five Ways To Drive Me Away:

1. Insult Adventure Time. I had a girl notice my Adventure Time shirt today. "I watched a couple of episodes," she said. "I was disappointed. Cartoon Network used to be GOOD." If I hadn't already disliked the girl, that unnecessary comment alone would have done it.

2. Point out that my feet are gross. There's nothing like hanging out with some friends and having one point out a spot of dry skin on your foot that "needs to be taken care of."

3. Use atrocious texting grammar. I can deal with the occasional "u" or ridiculous use of "lol," but when an average text from you reads "Oh lol ah that's suckys we'll better pack as much in as u can" or "Lol ye tmrw shud n fun day," I can only be but so involved with you.

4. Disrespect my musical taste. You think Linkin Park is "just noise"? That's cool. And by "cool" I mean "a rude and abominable opinion that should not be thrown at me so cavalierly."

5. Touch me excessively. I'm not a hugging person, but a Hello hug and a Goodbye hug make plenty of social sense. However, if you are constantly brushing my arm, poking my side, or--God forbid--trying to lean a body part against me, we're just not gonna work out.

What are some friendship deal-breakers for you guys?


Friday, September 6, 2013


Can you unmature?

I was reading through some old blog posts today, and I have come to the conclusion that I was a more calm, peaceful, and driven Stephanie in 2011 than I am in 2013. I do things today that 2011 Stephanie would scorn. I need things today that 2011 Stephanie could live her whole life without. I want things today that 2011 Stephanie would punch me for.

Don't get me wrong, I'm loving college. I'm loving it ten times more this year than I did last year. I have more friends, am doing better in classes, and am dressing like "clothes" occurred to me more than three seconds before I walked out the door.

I'm making some choices that aren't "the best," but I'm comfortable with them. I feel like this is my time to make mistakes, do crazy things, and on occasion not give a shit for literally once in my life. I've been a tightass for nineteen years. Time to live and breathe a little? I think so. I'm comfortable with my experiments in the cavalier realm. I feel like this is a stage in life I desperately need to go through in order to put myself back together and be the best Me I can be.


I feel like I'm a little late. My whole life, I've been ahead of the game, maturity-wise {at least emotionally}. I knew what I wanted early, felt comfortable approaching adults early, and fell legitimately in love early. Peers used to frustrate me because they could never understand where I was coming from. They just weren't ever "there" yet.

But somewhere along the line--pretty recently--my internal timeline got screwy. I feel like I went from being an emotionally mature, self-motivated, calm-hearted individual to an emotionally-insecure, short-sighted, club/dance/party-loving person.

I think everyone should go through a phase of the latter. I think it's healthy and will be helpful when you try to understand life, grow into who you're made to be, and later talk to your kids about growing up.

However, I think the immature latter phase is supposed to come BEFORE the mature, content phase.

Am I wrong? Am I alone in my confusion/experience? Did I just miss my chance to experiment and have fun?

I'm honestly asking, and would greatly appreciate any council or comments you have to offer... While I'm having a great year, I'm pretty much really struggling a lot.


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

One Percent

I wrote this randomly one afternoon in July. I like it, but I don't know what's going on yet.
“Are you okay?” Erika’s voice registered as irritated and impatient. The syllables assaulted my ears, causing a tender soreness that immediately engulfed my mind.

Sure, I was fine. Aside from the screeching pain in my head and the fact that my peripheral vision had turned to emptiness. Despite the panic rising tangibly in my being, I was fascinated by the vision loss. It wasn’t darkness closing in. It was like the world ceasing to exist, sinking into vague splotches of nothing.

“I’ll be right back,” I mumbled, pushing past my sister. “I’m fine; just one sec.”

I closed the door of the tiny hall bathroom behind me and crouched in front of the toilet taking deep, shaky breaths. I made my mouth into a small O and shut my eyes. That didn’t help. The sensation was disconcertingly similar to how the world was starting to look with my eyes open.

“They said this would happen,” I whispered evenly to myself. “99% certainty. If anything, this ought to make you feel more at ease. Everything is going according to plan. You’re fine. You’re fine.”

Elodie.” Erika’s voice slammed into me like a sack of flour: dull and heavy. I winced.

“Erika,” I returned. My voice still sounded strong, I noted with surprised satisfaction. “Can you just give me a moment of privacy? Is that honestly too much to ask?”

“Are you kidding me?” I could picture my sister with her hands on her hips and her left eyebrow peaking. “Look in the mirror and say that!”

A frown pinched at my nose. “I don’t think you’re using that accusation correctly. I always give you space when you ask.”

“No!” Erika cried. I heard the light slap of her giving her bare foot a stamp. “Literally, Elodie. Would you please just look at yourself?”

I snorted inwardly, which somehow sent a wave of nausea flowing over my core. I don’t know, would I look at myself? I wasn’t sure how much of my vision was left.

I opened my eyes a squinty amount, and found that I could see only the toilet and none of my surroundings.

“Seriously,” came Erika’s voice. She sounded breathy and nervous now. “I’m serious, Elodie. Look, if you haven’t already.”

At least I think that’s what she said. I know I heard some Erika Voice sounds, but I might have just manufactured the actual words. Everything was starting to feel very grainy and irrelevant. Nevertheless, I pushed my rubbery legs into a standing position and shuffled to the mirror without bending my knees. I gasped silently.

My skin was translucent purple and shrinking. It pulled at my eye sockets and mouth, giving me the look of a sour Asian beggar woman. Well, a purple one. It pulled so hard on my nose that I realized I was having trouble using it to breathe. I watched as my ears tucked themselves to my head and my forehead started to split.

This was not what they said would happen. This was not part of the plan.

My last thought was So this was the 1% chance


Friday, August 30, 2013

Dream 112

PC and I were running away from our captors or some evil corporation. Sometimes we were in a car, sometimes on horseback. Either way, PC was driving. {Sometimes we were Darren and Paige though. A lot of the time actually. But we were also still Stephanie and Sam.}

I think we had been arguing, or maybe it was just leftover tension from being captured. I dunno, but as we got farther away, the tension/anger began to subside. We started to like each other and feel like a team again.

I looked over my shoulder and saw that the sky was blanketed in horrendously beautiful, dark charcoal-colored clouds. It filled me with chilled awe and fearful adrenaline. And there was a tube-like piece of cloud beginning to reach down towards the ground…

“What is that?” I said to Sam, pointing.

The answer came to me right as he said it: “It looks like the beginning of a tornado.”

The wind began to pick up. I think I could feel it. We were kind of scared, and tried to drive/ride faster.

The cloud stopped looking like a tornado really and became a chubby cylinder with a little cloud stick poking out from it on the bottom right side. But I guess it was still a tornado.

I suddenly spotted a helicopter in the sky. It was the evil people; they were out looking for us. Fear pulsed through me. They were so close. They were about to see us. But then I had a great thought: maybe the helicopter would get sucked into the tornado.

“There’s one of the helicopters,” I told Sam. I don’t exactly remember the exchange between us, but it came down to the fact that even though he really wanted to watch, he had to look where we were going {‘cuz driving}, so I’d have to describe everything to him.

So I did. I described everything really thoroughly and poetically as the helicopter flew straight into the tornado and started to drop and shift around in the sky.

Then there were suddenly tons of shooting stars, white and beautiful. They streaked through the sky around the helicopter, and I jokingly thought maybe they’d hit the helicopter, even though I knew that wasn’t really how sky worked XD

But then that happened. Suddenly the stars were—and maybe had been the whole time—balls of fire, probably about the size of a basketball. They rained down mostly in the relatively near distance behind us with the tornado and helicopter, but some fireballs dropped close enough to us that we were alarmed.

The fireballs started to hit the helicopter. The helicopter didn’t catch on fire right away; it just kind of spun a little and started to fall. A panic budded in my chest. If it exploded, would anything hit us? The helicopter caught fire and started to go down.

“Um…” I began. I’d been describing everything, but suddenly the words were lodged and confused inside of me. I didn’t know how to address the danger in the most helpful way. PC didn’t yet know what was going on, and every second wasted was a second he’d like to have to consider the situation. “It’s going down,” I finally said. “It’s going to crash.”

That was good for us. But…

“Oh god,” I said. The helicopter slammed into the midst of some industrial buildings, where the evil people’s headquarters were. It crunched into the architecture with a chunky, tangible force the is the color blue to me.

“Brace yourself!” I yelled to Sam, although I don’t know how we were supposed to do that. Basically it amounted to us trying to get away faster. Suddenly we were on foot, holding hands, pounding our steps into the ground with as much panicked force as we could possibly drive through our heels.

The helicopter’s crash plowed out a crater in the ground, sending out a slow-motion shock wave of blue energy and orange fire. The wave leveled everything it touched.

Suddenly everything was in slow motion. We gripped each other’s hands with a rough desperation. I felt the wave of energy and heat coming closer. I knew it was dangerous, but I already felt victorious. I think I smiled.

The terrain in front of us changed. Suddenly it was tons of hills/mountains covered white pebbles, and we were giants compared to it. We had to be careful not to step in the rivers and passageways between mountains, because our feet would get caught in them


Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Me, as a Writer

I got these questions off Miriam Neal's blog, Wishful Thinking. I used to follow her when she was on Blogger {as opposed to Wordpress}. Now she has a book out called, "Monster." I think you can buy it online? Anyway, I stole these writing-related questions from her blog.

What was your first-ever piece of writing? I illustrated and dictated my stories to Mom before I could write myself. When I was about five, I had a series called "The Brave Little Briar" stories. Brave Little Briar was an adventurous girl like myself who liked to carry a big sword with which she fought dragons and chopped through briar thickets.

How old were you when you first began writing? I started telling stories on paper as soon as I could hold a writing implement. It got serious around...well, let's be real, I've always taken myself {too} seriously XD But I finished my first "full-length" story when I was twelve.

Name two writing goals. One short term & one long term. Short term...*thinks lots of rude, degrading, unhelpful thoughts about personal productivity and potential...clears throat* I'd like to write some every day this semester. I know that's a very small goal, and not one that will necessarily yield me a "finished" story, but right now I just need to get back into the writing habit.

A long term goal is to be a published and popular author. Yes, I said it. I'd like to receive some level of recognition. Not necessarily win an award or have my books turned into movies, but I want people to have heard of me.

Do you write fiction or non-fiction? Exclusively non-fiction, unless you count blogging and journaling.

Bouncing off of question 4, what’s your favorite genre to write in? Either fantasy or realistic fiction. Usually a combination of the two. It fascinates me when magic/the supernatural collides with the world as we know it.

Favorite author, off the top of your head! -_- Don't do this to me. Like actually. F. Scott Fitzgerald came to mind first though, so I'll go with him.

Three current favorite books. Unfortunately I haven't read any books recently that would qualify as favorites, so all these are old:  "Tex," The Farsala trilogy, and "Inkheart."

Biggest influence on your writing. I don't have an answer to this. Honestly, people I know don't influence my writing. Other authors do {like if I'm currently reading "Inkheart," my phrasing takes on a Cornelia Funke slant}, but even that fades after a couple of weeks.

What’s your go-to writing music? As a general rule, I can't write while listening to music. It distracts me. Every once in a while, though, I'll be listening to a song and *BAM!!* an idea smacks me in the face. When that happens, I put the song on repeat and go at it for hours. {Songs I can remember this happening with:  "American Secrets," by Parachute; "Safe and Sound," by Taylor Swift; "Orchard of Mines," by Globus; "Young and Beautiful," by Lana Del Ray; and "Headache Music," by Expedition.}

List three to five writing quirks of yours! Little habits, must-haves as you write, etc.
1) I hold my breath and bite my knuckles when I'm struggling to break through or writing an intensely emotional scene.
2) I get really hung up on names and point of view. I cannot be satisfied with a stand-in name, and I cannot so much as jot down a single sentence without deciding on a final POV.
3) If interrupted during a burst of inspiration, I completely deflate and become deeply furious and woefully depressed and cannot continue the story. Possibly ever again, but at least for the day.

{Wow. I'm even more high-maintenance than I thought.}

What, in three sentences or less, does your writing mean to you? Writing is a manifestation of the mental power, creativity, and acuity that I treasure. Writing is how I harness, explore, and reconcile my intense emotions. Writing is a way to inspire and persuade the public.

I tag anyone who wants to answer these :)