Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Pick a Card

Favorite things of this very moment:
  • The above picture. It makes me laugh constantly and I really don't know why. Probably the absolute absurdity of the kids face...good grief
  • Mat Kearney
  • Sweet Valley brands Orange Soda
  • Colored pencils (hey, I love coloring too)
  • Graph paper notebooks
  • Visual bookshelf of Facebook (still my favorite application EVER)
  • Removing people from my friends lists after we've come to a point where we: a) never talk, b) aren't particularly fond of each other, and c) the very mention of their name riles me up...
  • Telling people what they need to hear, even if it's hard (I'm actually proud of myself for not chickening out)
  • Knowing that within 8 days I'll be done with yet another year of college...thank goodness
  • Accents (particularly southern or the kind of western, farm country accent)


I've been running into lots of memories that make me think of Sarah. I realized that the only bad part about FUEL this year will be that she is not by my side. I've gotten use to that being a week we spend a crazy amount of time together, and I've been so proud to introduce my little sister to my friends and get to actually spend quality time getting to know her. She never ceased to amaze me with her generosity, silliness, and absolute zest for life and people. I only hope that when I die I will be remembered with the love and laughter she will be remembered for.

The odd thing is that in the wake of her death I suddenly realized a couple of things about myself. Things that were completely obvious to people around me (I'm sure):

  1. That I have completely lost track of myself
  2. That I do not believe in myself at all
  3. That I have let myself go (*sigh* uuuugh)
  4. That I have no life goals and/or ambitions to drive at

What is the deal? I can pinpoint when everything fell apart for me: Jacob Zuniga's death.

What drives me crazy is that I know this is not what my life should be. He would not want me to be like this, and I certainly do not want to remain like this. I just am so uncertain in everything that it is ridiculous.

I've given myself a time-period finally. A clock of sorts. I have decided that I must know what I will do this next year by the end of May. I have to have a plan picked out, decided on, and set in motion by May 31st because if I don't start moving forward like I constantly pretend I am than I am going to be living in my bedroom at my parents house for the rest of my life. I love my folks and they love me, but this situation is unhealthy to continue in without having a plan to eventually (hopefully sooner) get myself out into the real world (ish) being a competent adult.

Goals. That's what I need. I need something to strive for. And my mom is probably right...I need someone or something to take care of. I currently am doing a fabulous job of wallowing in self-pity, self-loathing, self-depreciation and a lot of other selfish (ha!) and pointless areas.

Change is possible, isn't it?

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Breath In & Breath Out

Favorite things of this very moment (4:08 pm CST):
  • Sun tea in the (new) fabulous Dasani water bottle (sadly, it is also a recycle #1...argh!)
  • Water proofing
  • Having time to change out of soaked through clothes before I had to come to work
  • Rain
  • "Ugly Flower for a Beautiful Friend" mix (Gratzi Nikky!)
  • Chocolate, REAL cherries, coconut
  • Being completely done with my Access database project (and I was even done early and became the guru for those people who were struggling to finish...what gives)
  • David's willingness to leave his laptop with me so that I could finish my project (even though that actually didn't work out)
  • Edna St. Vincent Millay's beautiful poetry
  • Dave Eggers in any form (such a witty man and a brilliant writer)
  • The Tick vs. Season 2
  • Knowing that there is a stack of wonderful books waiting for me at home
  • Soft Kleenexes
  • Giving myself a bit of a break after completing the first of several final projects due over the course of the next 2 weeks
  • The knowledge that the end of the semester is actually in sight
  • Sidewalk chalk
  • The memory of Hulk Hogan the Peep ("His nipples weren't right...")

Today is one of those days were I feel accomplished even though I know that there's still so much left to do. I've decided that Access is a cruel program, but I am now capable of handling it if necessary, so I guess it's alright.

The downside is that the Access project was one of 3 major projects I am currently working on, but at least it is now out of the way and I have till Tuesday to work on my Small Business Plan and to get a rough draft of my American Lit 2 papers... I will prevail!

Last night at Youth Group, Gail decided, in light of last weeks tragedy in Sarah's death, that we should talk to the kids about salvation. Terrence and I both told her we thought it was a good idea. Several of the kids are actually very interested in getting baptized, apparently they just weren't sure what else was involved or how to voice that to anyone. I am excited. By the end of this summer, we may have 3 more little siblings in Christ. Sometimes those warm spring evenings when you convince everyone they should sit outside to further enjoy the moment...those times really surprise you and God works in really amazing ways.

We talked about how believing in God and that He sent Jesus to die on the cross for our sins in the first step in becoming a believer (or however you want to say that). If we choose to wholeheartedly follow Christ's example and believe in God's plan...we will be saved. Terrence made a good point last night, he said that once you start, as long as you keep moving forward, the rest of it will start to fall in place. We did make it very clear to the kids that no one is ever going to be perfect and that everyone messes up, but that the beauty of it is, if we get up, repent, and truly try to continue to grow and change, we will be forgiven because God is love. It is a beautiful thing.

The amazing thing is that this entire lesson that was for our touched my heart too. Sometimes I worry that I've become a bit too calloused for my own good (in fact I know I am at times), but it still touched my heart. Sometimes I try to take too much advantage of God's love for me. Instead of trying to make God happy, I make myself "happy" realizing that I am screwing up, and then the remorse and repentance that I later profess...sometimes they aren't as real as they should be. I am so glad that God is gracious and forgiving and so completely patient with me because I so often find myself still screwing the same things up.

Let me just be honest for a moment...

These are my most struggled with sins (the ones that I find myself stuck in right now):

  • Eating too much and/or what's bad for me
  • Gossiping when I should be building others up
  • A thought life I am always proud of (this covers so many things...*sigh*)
  • Trusting more in my own provision than in God's strength (and this causes me to fail more than anything else)

It's time to get back down on my knees and start praying for the strength and grace to change.

And I will leave you with the following:

"My first business is to so live that at least a few will thank
God that I lived when my little day is done."

-Alfred A. Montapert

Friday, April 18, 2008

I Still Believe

Favorite things about today (as of 3:35 pm CST):
  • That Nikky is sleeping on my couch (which is good because otherwise she'd be listening to me trying to sing along with all the songs on my Sarah mix and my voice is so scratchy right now it's a bad idea...haha)
  • Knowing Kayla will be here in less than an hour
  • Ice cream maker balls
  • That the visitation and funeral are over and that there are no more formal grieving functions I need to attend and perform
  • Seeing my email full of loving notes and comments and my facebook wall covered with encouragement
  • The Sarah (147:3) mix
  • Pasta salad
  • Getting huge hugs from Johnny (he's so huge and I just haven't seen him in sooo long)
  • "I love you"
  • Purses big enough to smuggle LOADS of Kleenex and a huge water bottle in
  • David doing all the driving
  • Hugs from: Mom, Jenni, Tim, Jimbo, Johnny, Lil, Carson, Kayla, David, Joel, Daddy, Christine, Bev, Liz, Gail, Heather, and so many others...
  • Today is Friday
  • Seeing Tim carrying drumsticks
  • Hearing Jay and Tim play "Did you feel the mountains tremble?"
  • Singing through the tears
  • "Homecoming" by Kanye West feat. Chris Martin

It will get better.

Thursday, April 17, 2008


Again, my blog will be backwards...

Today has been interesting. I woke up this morning with Usher singing in my head because his was one of the last voices I got to hear before I went to bed last night (Nikky makes the best mix cds). Sadly, even though I was hearing Usher's beautiful voice singing words to a song I absolutely love and enjoy dancing badly too (though not nearly as creatively or badly as the people in "Hairspray"...that's just amazing), I was in a lousy mood. I woke up this morning absolutely dreading going to school. For some reason the idea of having to go to Sauk today seemed so much more horrible than Sarah's visitation. How messed up is that? *sigh*

Fortunately, Nikky went with me. I lied to my American Lit professor and told him she was interested in coming to Sauk and the class. It wasn't a complete lie. She was interested in seeing how the class worked, but we also had a Tornado drill today. Fabulous. That was actually interesting because I'd never seen Sauk's basement before.

Wow...the rambling. Basically, what I'm trying to say is that I made it. I'm done with class. Nikky survived being at Sauk despite it's horrible decorating and depressing demeanor (although, I am sad she didn't have the pleasure of seeing Mr. Willoughby...he's so beautiful).

Now the real challenge, the one that should have been what I was dreading is looming. In a little less than 2 hours, I will be at the church facing what I've been staving off for 2 days....that my Sarah is dead.

The Sarah who played tackle football and soccer with Eric, David and I in the backyard of the house in Oregon, who fought with Jenni (which, to be perfectly honest, was hilarious to me), who baked everyone at Alfano's their favorite cookies, who made the world's best puppy chow, who knew my secrets and loved me anyway, who called me her big sister, who made me so proud, who was such a hard worker, who loved little kids and adored her neice and nephew, who took care of her big brothers and loved her parents (even if they did fight), who drove too fast, loved others so much, and now...has died all to young.

My Sarah.

Why did this happen?

"I lift my eyes unto the hills/Where does my help come from?/My help comes from the LORD/The maker of heavens and earth/...And I will praise you in this storm/And I will lift my hands/For You are who You are/No matter where I am/And all these tears I cry/You hold in Your hands"

My favorite things of this very moment (3:34pm CST):
  • http://http//
  • Linda stopping in to see if her grandson (*cough*) was still here (the bum...haha) because she was going to ask him for help with something
  • Uncle Jon
  • Having a water bottle
  • My cell phone
  • The beautifully decorated box that Nikky brought for me
  • Dark chocolate
  • Taco Bell
  • Sunshine and warm weather (complete with gentle breeze)
  • That Nikky is here
  • Graph paper
  • That I will finally be able to give Eric a hug tonight and give him the little...package I put together for him
  • Psalm 147:3, Psalm 121
  • Mix cds from Nikky (Kanye, Usher, All-American Rejects, Tyler Hilton, David Bowie...*sigh* joy and rapture)
  • Having the windows rolled down
  • That time really does ease some pain

I'm out.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Jesus Wept

I'm going to do this a little out of order and put my favorite things at the end this time. I just feel I'd rather end on a good note than begin with one and reverse its effect rather expeditiously.

Kayla called me today thinking it was Monday. As it's Tuesday that would seem silly except for the fact that life has been confusing and run together and eternal for the past 3 days. When you wake up on Sunday morning thinking things are going to be normal and only get to remain thinking that for about 2 kinda throws everything else off and makes it all go a haywire.

Sarah died. My beautiful little sister. I am brokenhearted. I didn't realize until this morning how completely in shock I had been because I hadn't really cried much since initially finding out on Sunday, but today I've been crying constantly. Everything reminds me of something else which causes me to cry which frustrates me which causes me to cry more which reminds me of something else get the picture.

Needless to's been a long day.

I've had numerous messages from friends telling me they're praying for the family and/or me and that I can call day or night. I am so blessed. I have a church family that is completely wonderful who are showing so much love and support for one another right now. I have wonderful friends, many of which are coming to show support for the family at the visitation and/or funeral this week.

The best message I've had all week was one from Kim today. She said that I don't have to be strong all the time. It's okay to cry. After all Jesus wept. That made me smile. It also really made me feel better. I've heard people say "Jesus wept," about a million times but never in this context. Jesus wept when his friend, Lazuras died. Why should it be any different for me? I will cry when I am sad, especially in a situation like this. I'm brokenhearted just as Jesus was. And just as Jesus did, I have hope for the future because someday I will see Sarah again. And I'll get to meet Lazuras. Sweet deal. Alright, I'm not trying to make light of this situation, but I am feeling much more encouraged at this point. Thank goodness for wonderful friends.

And list of favorite things for this very moment (4:33pm CST):
  • The Internet
  • My cell phone (and the fact that I can turn it on vibrate and still let people get ahold of me)
  • Kim's encouraging words
  • That Nikky will be here tomorrow (which means more to me than I can ever say)
  • Knowing that I'll get to see Sarah someday
  • That I'll be done with work soon and I'll get to spend time with Amber tonight
  • That I talked to Eric today
  • Orbit gum (raspberry mint and peppermint)
  • Having a waterbottle with me at all times (especially when I'm currently prone to dehydration)
  • Sunshine and warm weather

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Mr. Willoughby and Other Items of the Day

Favorite things of this very moment (4:51 pm CST):
  • That I will be done with work in 9 minutes
  • That I realized Nikky had recently written some brilliance in her blog that I thoroughly enjoyed
  • Eldest by Christopher Paolini (it's distracting me for the moment, and so worth it too)
  • Peppermint tea
  • Jeff calling which seems so...weird...and brilliantly timed...(I think the irony of this is what really was my favorite...not necessarily anything else...heh)
  • Getting a package in the mail from Heather today. Woohoo new mixes and some chocolate! We are back in business!
  • Mr. Willoughby

As Nikky so brilliantly says, "I am so the opposite of smooth." Ah yes, so am I. So am I. Geez and Ugh. am I. Let me explain:

I talked to Mr. Willoughby again today in my Computer class. He sat down next to me because of a project we were all working on that had us moving all the time. When he was done, he looked over and asked if all he had to do was close it out on the computer. And me, being completely incapable of taking talking and processing information because of the glorious beauty of his entire being (that and he has one of those voices that just is smoother than silk and you wish you could listen to him talk for forever because it's so perfect) that all I could manage was something incredibly lame and weak like, "yess..." I don't think I even completely looked at him or smiled. You know, like you should do when you talk to attractive men because they, apparently, find it attractive when you say actual words of some kind in their direction as well as being friendly. Uh. I am such an idiot. And he is so incredibly beautiful. If only I was majoring in photography and could convince him I needed to take a picture of him. *sigh* But I am not creative enough to do this. Kind of like that whole Shane thing, but let's just skip that...


Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Troubled Waters

Favorite things of this very moment (4:11 pm CST):
  • Coffee (with a little sugar, a lot of cinnamon, and a little vanilla soy milk)
  • Twilight by Stephanie Meyer
  • New Moon by Stephanie Meyer
  • Dreaming about Edward in an excessively vague and text-esque sense which means I didn't have nightmares or really messed up dreams like I've been having all too often lately that leave me with less sleep than I started out with (well it seems that way) those books are great
  • Eclipse by Stephanie Meyer
  • Gummy bears
  • Having the ability to stay up to all hours to read, but still have plenty of time to sleep and get much needed work done
  • Peppermint tea
  • Paying lots of attention to lyrics unlike my close friend and male counterpart, Mr. Laurent

The ache is back. The one that moves back and forth from my heart to the pit of my stomach (well more like just below the bottom of my rib cage where it seems to pulsate and radiate and make everything feel wrong) to my throat and back to my chest again where it feels so intense that I feel like I'll explode.

The Twilight series isn't helping me out in this department, but then again neither is the Jane Austen or Nicholas Sparks or Stardust or the Christian romance novels Grandma sent (duh!) or any of the other books I've read recently and enjoyed.

It will get better. One of these days the hole in my heart will have its missing piece. In the meantime, I need to find something I actually want to do and pursue it to the fullest.

Today, I took an excessively long, very hot shower because I kept slipping between memories and I guess I thought maybe it would wash it away. It didn't. Instead it seemed to just help it along. Reading New Moon in its entirety last night brought back a series of memories. Promises I was once given and had believed so freely. Promises that have never, and will never, be brought back Jeff. Memories I try to keep buried to avoid days exactly like this.

It made me question my sanity for the 2nd time in two days. The first was brought on by truly seeing myself in Blanche's character in Tennessee Williams' play "A Streetcar Named Desire" which terrified me enough to skip the rest of my classes and go straight to wandering Shopko while talking to Nikky. I think she honestly worried about me having some kind of break down. I wasn't far from believing that as a possibility myself...

Then after reading New Moon, it brought Jeff back so quickly and easily that it startled me. Meyer uses a lot of "Romeo and Juliet" in the book. Many of Edwards words and Bella's reactions felt familiar. The ache Bella described, the pain she felt. They're here in me. This in and of itself completely upsets me.

Have I just been using all these guys as a placeholder? A Paris to my Juliet, if you will? A plan B? Not one of them deserved that. Clearly there is something wrong with me, with my heart.

Why do I still have all the memories and the promises locked inside my head? The promises that he would love and protect me forever. That he would never leave. Why have I been unable to find someone better for me without the feeling something is wrong? Apparently I haven't found the right guy yet, but what if it's worse than that? What if I really do love Jeff and no one else will ever bring me to life the way he did? What if he was supposed to be the One, but choose to take a different path? The path without me.

Ugh. I am so bitter and cynical today. Again. There is something so wrong with all of this.

Of course, this doesn't even begin to cover my anger with myself for being almost 22 but in no way self-sufficient. When did I let myself become such a coward?