Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Distance

Favorite things of this very moment (12:00 pm):
  • A Year in the World by Frances Mayes
  • Daydreams
  • Waking up to sunshine this morning which helped to dissipate the remnants of discontent and fear that I fell asleep with
  • A functioning alarm clock
  • Understanding parents
  • Finishing the sugar, milk, and delectable flavored coffee that I brought with me from home this morning and savored as I read
  • That 2008 is close at hand

I slept soundly till this morning when my alarm woke me up. I dreamt all through the night though I don't remember any of them. They were fairly well filled with turmoil, unspoken promises, broken hearts, fear, and disillusion. Yes, I know I just said I didn't remember them... I don't, but the feelings remained. When my alarm went off, I thought someone was drunk dialing me again (it did happen this past weekend, from someone I never expected...which made it comical, even if he did wake me up in the middle of the night) only to realize the sun was shining and I needed to get up for work. It was comforting.

I spent yesterday evening with Jeff. He called twice yesterday. The first time to wish me a merry Christmas, and the second time to ask me to go to a movie with him. He said we hadn't spent much time together in a long time, and he thought we should. Sometimes you get so far away only to realize that despite your best intentions, best interest, the miles or time're still in the same spot. Or can quickly find yourself sitting next to someone smiling and listening as if time has been standing still waiting for you to find it.

And then you realize you really have been growing up because though you're performing the same function and routine that you've lived through a thousand times before, as you close your eyes and listen, the voice is the same, but the person speaking is someone different from the one you saw when your eyes were open. Sometimes you can only really see someone when you're eyes are closed.

Which brings us back to going to sleep in such a wickedly cynical and fatalistic state of mind and waking up this morning letting the sunshine loose the fingers of feelings better left unsaid that had used their claws to hook themselves as deeply and painfully as they could in my heart and head. Morning light sometimes makes all the difference...

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

A Few Good Things

Favorite things of this very moment (3:53 pm):
  • Finally having all my Christmas shopping done and knowing I got something everyone I bought for will actually want...Yes
  • Peppermint White Chocolate Mocha from Starbucks
  • Starbucks "dates" with Jenna
  • Old fashioned cream drops
  • That today is payday
  • That Mom lets me wear her work boots
  • Meeting the president of Sauk Valley Community College and him being such a nice man
  • Fake facial hair
  • Speculating on the origin and purpose of a group of teenage (well...possibly college) guys where suits and bow ties wondering collectively through Barnes & Noble (and yet they never sang...they should have)
  • Friendly sales people who actually take your strange questions seriously and never question you carrying around a book with the words "Sex God" clearly printed on the cover
  • That Christmas is 6 days away, Heather comes home in 2 days, Rachel comes home in 1 day, Jeff comes home in 2 days, and I will get to be in Ohio in 14 days...oh yeah...only 14

Life is good. Jenna and I spent a good deal of time today telling each other stories. Por ejemplo:

me: lighting my coat on fire, ABC stories, how I met people at FUEL

Jenna: how she met Mike Zizert & Jon Fletcher, the Tulip festival, her car accident

Needless to say, it was a very bizarre and lovely event. Spending time with one's cousins should always be this much fun. We're going to try and get together again before she heads back to school.

The only thing that didn't make me happy today was finding out that my Starbucks gift card will not work at the Starbucks in Barnes & Noble because though it is a Starbucks, it is technically not of the Starbucks or something weird, so next time I meet Jenna I may just say that we need to go to the "official" real-deal Starbucks so that I don't have to spend money. Geez.

Oh, and the other displeasing item was getting to the Dollar General to buy Veggie Tale's videos for my Sunday School class only to find 4 of them when we have, in fact, 7 kids (though only 4 of them show up regularly). Boo. Oh well, I got hideous snowman lanterns, so the kids are going to have to enjoy them and Kayla and I will make them cookies or something to go with them. So there. bwahaha.

All in all, an excellent, though very busy day.

And on that note, I have nothing outside of this to say. At least nothing constructive.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Death, True Love, Chases, Escapes, Miracles

Favorite things of this very moment (11:35 am):
  • The following quote: "Never knock on Death's door: ring the bell and run away! Death really hates that!" -Matt Frewer
    The that cut on my right index finger from the saw blade is healing nicely
  • That Megan Ziegler is going to pull through all right
  • That Wendy Thomas (Lacey and I's cousin), her boyfriend, Michael, and Michael's older brother all survived (without injury no less) crashing into a rock wall at 60 mph last night...
  • My Fiji water bottle
  • My blue Bitten thermal shirt
  • Knowing what I am going to wear to Kyle and Angie's wedding
  • New razor blades
  • Feeling like I actually have a handle on my presentation for tomorrow
  • Knowing that I have the money for my first tuition payment in the bank and I didn't have to borrow anything from anyone
  • That God provides, even in the littlest things
  • Crazy dreams and my mother's commentary
I'm glad I've gotten use to not eating lunch because I completely forgot to pack anything for today, and I have absolutely no money to pay for anything even if I did want to eat. Having The Cheese Shop next door can be a really miserable thing at times.

Yesterday I realized I'm losing weight because even with pj pants on under my jeans, my jeans were still falling down. I can tolerate the embarrassment of having my pants falling down (constantly) in front of 4 attractive men as long as there is a good reason for it. Yeah some weight loss!

By the way, the cut on my finger isn't real bad. It still hurts a little bit, and bled quite a bit when it happened, but it's not a big deal. I was just moving the saw to hang them up and caught the tip of my finger on one of the blades. Lovely, but it's healing just fine. I may have a weird little "x" shaped scar on my finger tip though depending on how it decides to heal.

And speaking of weird things that happened at work, I set my coat on fire on Saturday. Chris Ditto was in the hut eating his lunch while I was trying to get change, and I made the mistake of standing too close to Mr. Heater who apparently felt it was important to really warm me up. My coat strings caught on fire. The guy I was getting change for is suddenly says, "Your coat is on fire," and I, in all my brilliance, say, "What?" He says, "YOUR COAT IS ON FIRE." I look down and sure enough, I'm on fire. And what do you think I say in this extremely interesting moment? "Oh." I shake the coat out and it goes out. I hand the guy change. Chris didn't even react. It was amazing. And somehow I was completely unscathed and unshaken. God definitely does look out for me.

On a much sadder note, Malorie Ziegler died on Saturday. Megan, her older sister (who is a friend of Kayla, Jeff, and I's), was driving and they hit some ice or something and ended up in the other lane. They were t-boned. Malorie died on impact which is, sadly, probably for the best. Megan is currently in stable condition, but she is unaware of Malorie's death because at this point they have to keep her heavily sedated. They can't move her without her heart-rate rocketing, so they're just trying to keep her stable and let her heal before they do anything more. The good news is that the doctor's are optimistic about her recovery. They think she'll be able to heal completely and walk normally in the end. The bad thing is, even though it was an accident due to bad weather, Megan is probably going to feel guilty about this for a long time. The worst part this about this for me is watching Joel. Malorie was one of his best friends. The other night after we found out, he turned to me and said, "Jaymin, now I know exactly how you felt when Zuni died." My heart broke. Thirteen-year-old's should not have to face the death of someone that close to them. Especially another 13-year-old. It's not right. At all.

In times like this, all you can do is pray, and pray a lot. I figure I'll just do a lot of listening, make sure I give a lot of hugs, make sure the boys all know that they're important to me, and do all I can to keep them safe. And I'll pray.

But let's end this on a positive note, so I'll tell you 2 more stories:

God does answer prayer. I've been in a panic the past several days trying to figure out how I was going to set up a payment plan for classes and where this money would be coming from. I got online the other night and spent several hours filling out scholarship application stuff, trying to find my pin number for FAFSA, checking on odds and ends with financial aid, and finally trying to set up a payment plan. It was a miracle, I get into set up my payment plan and find out that I'll only owe the college $349 for my classes next semester. I didn't realize that I only had to fill out FAFSA once a year, so I had some money coming to me. It paid for my tuition except this remaining $349 and my books!

This was great, except that the first payment was due on Tuesday, and I thought I had to pay my speeding ticket Monday. Come to find out I had been reading the ticket wrong. I can't send in the ticket until this next week. I don't understand why it works this way, but it does, and that's fine with me. So that's alright, I don't have to pay the speeding ticket yet, but there's one more problem. I am short $2.13 for my first payment. Literally just $2.13. I suck it up and talk to my dad. Tell him that pathetically enough, I am short $2.13, kicking myself silently for buying a pair of Pomegranate Rock Stars to keep myself conscious while I worked out at Sinnissippi over the weekend on Friday night. Dad says it's not a big deal, he'll transfer a couple of bucks and I'll be just fine. I can pay him back when I get paid on Wednesday. So we're alright, I'm fine. I'm totally drained of all money at all and am still uncertain of where any money will be coming for the next several weeks, but at least this payment is taken care of.

Then, miracle of miracles, yesterday morning at Sinnissippi, a woman hands me a five bill as a tip. I thanked her and stared at it for a long time. I suddenly realized God had just provided me with the money I needed to cover the rest of my tuition bill. But it didn't stop there. The last family of the night came out just before we were closing, and the guys were really helpful to them. We stayed out in the field an extra 20 minutes just to make sure they got there trees and were all set. The last guy that paid handed me $10 and told me to make sure that the guys and I all went and got ourselves something warm to drink. Everyone kept thanking us for staying and telling us how sweet we were to do that. This means I got $7 in tips which completely covers the rest of my bill. I sent that and 3 dollars in change that I found in my car, my purse, and on my dresser. God provided, yet again. I didn't even realize I had any change, let alone that much. One less thing to worry about, thank you, God. :)

One last night, last night I had this crazy dream. This morning Mom was sitting with David and I while we ate breakfast before going to work, and I started telling them about this dream. I said a guy had planted a bomb at this college, and I had a guy friend there who I was trying to find so I could get him to leave with me.

Mom immediately asks, "What did your friend look like?"
I look at her strangely and ask in a real guarded way, "Why?"
She says, "Well I use to dream about your father, long before I met him."
I said, "Mom, I've always had dreams with guys with dark hair, but this guy was blond."
Mom continues, completely unphased by my saying this, "I use to dream about a guy with dark hair and blue eyes. I told of friend of mine that I was going to marry a guy with dark hair and blue eyes, and she thought I was crazy. That was before I'd ever seen your father, before I left to go to OBC."
All I can do is say, "Mom, I don't know who this guy was, but I know it wasn't Jay because he was a shorter guy." In fact, the guy in my dream looked vaguely like the blond guy Rory dated on Gilmore Girls whose name I cannot, for the life of me remember, the rich one. I can't remember the dream guys face though. I know I saw it. Often, actually, throughout the entire dream, but I can't see it in my head. All I can see is his outline and his hair (which, incidentally, I love).
"Jaymin, Aaron has kinda blond hair."
"Mom, isn't Aaron married?"
"I don't know for sure, but you've been at work with him the past couple of day, are you sure it wasn't Aaron?"
"No, I'm pretty sure, after spending all that time with him, that I'd recognize Aaron even in a dream." I thought about it for a moment, "It definitely wasn't Aaron. I don't know if I've ever seen this guy before. I can remember him except I can't remember his face."

I went on to tell them about my 2nd dream too. My mysterious blond friend was in that one too.

Mom just made sure to state again that she dreamed of dad on more than one occasion before meeting him and then, eventually, realizing he'd been the man in all those dreams. Mom's never suggested that this could happen to me, but I always thought those dreams of a guy with dark hair and eyes was the one for me...maybe not. Maybe Mom's on to something. Her dreams didn't start until just a little while before she met dad. *shrugs* Who knows.

Life is so strange. And on that note...I leave you.