Thursday, March 27, 2014

You can do anything, but not everything

I'm the kind of person who likes to change my wallpaper on my phone and on my computer very frequently. I change it for different holidays, when seasons change, and just when I feel like it.

Recently I discovered Design Love Fest and the awesome Dress Your Tech posts Bri has. If you're anything like me (girly, modern-ish, glass-half-full) and like to change your backgrounds often, your search for the perfect design blog to find backgrounds is over. I seriously downloaded probably half of the images she has in the Dress Your Tech series. I am not kidding.

I don't have my phone set to use the iCloud at all, so I wasn't able to use one of the awesome new backgrounds on my phone until just a few days ago when I finally plugged it into my computer. And then I didn't even think about changing the background until today. As I was looking through all my new downloads I saw this gem.

Dress Your Tech 31
I have had a very stressful week (just ask my face and her awesome breakout) and seeing this made me just take a breath and remind myself that "I can do this!" "This" being getting a project done for my Techniques of Counseling class, and even more-so, passing the TExES exam to become a certified early childhood-6th grade teacher. I signed up for my test on the ETS website about a month ago, but didn't find good study material until this Monday and my test is tomorrow (Friday). In order to get all my studying done, I've had to commandeer the living room in such a way that Thomas has had to wear headphones almost constantly or just leave to go to a friends house (because I cannot study with noise around me). I feel pretty good about it now since I took over the house all day Tuesday and Wednesday. I still have Mount Vesuvius on my cheek, though.

Besides feeling like spring break came way too late in the semester, leaving me no time to get everything done before my finals on April 21st and 24th, I also have recently been remembering this time last year. I was still anxiously awaiting letters from grad schools that I knew I wouldn't get into and was a little lost. I soon found the school counseling program at LCU and became infatuated. I got into school here in Lubbock and settled into my new future. I was adamant with anyone that asked that I was okay with the fact that I would no longer be doing speech pathology (something I'd wanted to do for 10 years before changing course). Now that I am reminiscing on what was going on last spring, though, I am kind of mourning the future I could have had if I had gotten into a speech pathology grad program. I really love my counseling classes, and am very eager to begin my career as a school counselor, but I also miss that I was going to wear scrubs every day and that I was going to help kids' speech and language every day, specifically working with kids on the spectrum or with hearing loss. I still think communication is amazing and I love learning about it, but I can't do everything. I can't be a counselor and a speech therapist. And I'm learning to be truly okay with that. 

Sunday, February 16, 2014


I'm just here to claim my blog on Bloglovin!

I'm excited to start using this service and finding all the posts from the bloggers I follow in one place instead of having five million bookmarks! Go check it out if you haven't yet!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Peter Pan, Wendy, and Angela Montenegro

It's been a long long while since I wrote anything down here, but I am having a hard time forgetting a Peter Pan quote recently and thought I would put some words down about it here. If you have ever read the book by J. M. Barrie, you know that Disney followed it pretty well and that it really is a great coming-of-age story for anyone who is in the process of realizing that they don't get to be a little kid forever.

There are many memorable lines from the story, but my favorite passage has to be the first paragraph:
All children, except one, grow up. They soon know that they must grow up and the way Wendy knew was this. One day when she was two years old she was playing in a garden, and she plucked another flower and ran with it to her mother. I suppose she must have looked rather delightful, for Mrs Darling put her hand to her heart and cried, "Oh, why can't you remain like this forever!" This is all that passed between them on the subject, but henceforth Wendy knew that she must grow up. You always know after you are two. Two is the beginning of the end.
It is a great lead-in for a book. It tells you that Wendy is going to have to learn to grow up before the end of the story, but it also tells you that there will be a character who does not ever learn to grow up. It's somewhat mysterious if someone has never heard the story of Peter Pan before.

Besides this quote, there is also the whole idea of the story to keep in mind - everyone must grow up, but the memories we make as children can stay with us forever, and we should never forget our childlike innocence. Knowing how much of a jerk the character of Peter is also really helps reinforce the idea that people want to grow up, because no one wants to end up like Peter. He is very selfish and doesn't even remember ever having a mother! I don't know about you, but I love my mom to pieces and I would never give up that relationship, even if it meant never having to grow up. Wendy understands this (as well as the "don't forget your childhood" thing I mentioned earlier) and allows her children to fly off to Neverland with Peter when the time comes, but she has taught and loved her children well so that they want to come back home every time they fly off. They, too, grow up.

So this quote is scrolling through my mind frequently and then Boyfriend and I were watching an old episode of Bones last night. In it, Angela Montenegro, the artist of the group, is broken up with by her girlfriend Roxie because she needs someone to plan a future with, whereas Angela really loves to live in the moment. A lot of times, this blog is all about living in the moment, so at first I'm with Angela asking "what's wrong with living in the moment?" And Hodgins (the "bugs and slime" character) leads Angela to the answer: part of being in relationships with people (platonic and romantic), is planning for the future. The present cannot be as sweet without the promise of more to come. For Peter Pan, he does not look toward the future, but lives in the moment completely and life is just not as sweet for him. He has to make chaos frequently to get any enjoyment out of life. When something doesn't go his way, he gets irrationally upset banishing people (and pixies!) and isolating himself. The children who grow up, though, know that there are always new adventures in life and look forward to the newness of them and facing them when they are ready, oftentimes with people they love.

I kind of feel this way about living with zeal, too. It is important to live in the moment and truly experience everything that's happening, but looking forward to the future is okay, too! And planning for the future zealously can be just as rewarding as experiencing the now.  There's always something to look forward to, and though there are times when it is tough to see, knowing there's a silver lining full of new adventures to come can be just what I need to get through the tough times.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

AtZ loves Oklahoma

I always pictured myself living in Texas for the rest of my life. I thought I'd go to college in Texas, get a job in Texas, get married in Texas, raise my kids in Texas, retire to Texas. I never imagined myself ending up in Oklahoma for any amount of time. You know how people talk about Arkansas like it's this incestuous, hillbilly, crazy-filled state? Texans kinda feel that way about Oklahoma, also, if they haven't lived there; haven't met the people there. And then I did both of those things. And it has changed me.

Oklahoma is where I learned to appreciate life. It's where I decided to live zealously and pursue happiness in all things. Oklahomans became my family. I relied on them when I was sad, happy, broken, homesick, needed to share my life with someone. Oklahoma was my home for the past 4 years of my life. This state and its people have forever ingrained itself into me; it's a part of who I am.

A part of who I am was torn apart yesterday. It is leveled. It is littered. It is dead. I know there are people who are grieving, feeling like there can be no reason to continue pursuing life. It would be easy to give up on trying to find joy in all of the destruction.

But, part of my thoughts on being zealous includes the pursuit to feel fully. It can be terrible, and it can be destructive if there is a lack of a support system, but fully feeling this grief and this hurt is what is going to make me remember to fully feel and experience the joy that life has to offer. I will remember the lives lost, and honor that by living my life as hard as I can; by being passionate and zealous to continue experiencing all that this beautiful life have to offer.

A part of who I am was brought together yesterday, as it has had to do far too many times in the past. This state knows pain, but it also knows support, love, and faith. If there was ever a state who could handle trauma, it's Oklahoma. It is strong. It is healing. It is alive.

All my love, prayers, and support go to my home away from home. Thanks for letting me be one of you for the past four years. I wouldn't have it any other way.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Prayers are Liquid Luck

"Don't forget that you are not going through your sorrow alone. God is there. He hears you. He knows what you are facing day in and day out. He WILL bring you joy and you will rejoice! NO ONE can rob you of the pure joy that God can and will bring. Amen!"

A friend of mine on facebook posted this this morning after posting this verse:

     "So you have sorrow now, but I will see you again; then you will rejoice, and no one can rob you of that joy."

John 16:22

and I immediately felt like I needed to say something about it.

I am of the persuasion that God doesn't interact with us on a day-to-day basis. Don't get me wrong, I believe He hears our prayers and does something about them if it's necessary, but I feel like God is a sort of mama bird who has taught us how to fly, and for the most part, He let's us figure things out on our own. Prayers are a sort of self fulfilling prophecy in a way that we pray for what we want, or feel like we need, and then praying gives us the confidence that God is going to do something about it, when in reality, we make it happen ourselves.

It's like Ron Weasley and the Liquid Luck in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Harry tricks Ron into thinking he's had some of the potion, so Ron feels like he can do anything and wins the Quidditch match for Gryffindor, when in actuality, Ron makes that happen all with his own skills.

Prayers are Liquid Luck.

Now, back to the verse and the comment my friend made about it.

We are not going through our sorrow alone. . . because God has provided friends for us to lean on.
God is there; He does hear you.
He is omnipresent, so yeah, He knows what you face daily.
This is where we disagree, though. I don't believe that God reaches down and removes you from the hard situation; nor does He come down and whisper encouragement in your ear. But, God did come down as a human and subsequently die for us. Remembering that someone so powerful loves me so much is what gives me the strength to get through tough times (strength=confidence, God's love [and praying to Him because we believe in that love]=Liquid Luck). And it's what keeps me joyous always. Like this verse, "and no one can rob you of that joy," no situation or person can rob me of the joy I feel because of His love for me. Therefore, it is my daily intention to show God's love and light to others by being joyful in all things; to me, that is how God is with us and supports us on a daily basis - by giving us other people to experience life and share joy with. So that's what I try to do. 

Pray for joy, and it will be "given," and then go and zealously seek out others to share that joy with.

Monday, March 18, 2013

How not to check the mail six times a day

Take a break! In beautiful spring weather!

In my last post I discussed all the waiting I'm doing right now and how stressful that can be. And how hard it can be to look on the bright side of it, as I so often try to do. A couple days ago, though, my sister brought in the mail and I realized that I don't have to worry about it. For a whole week I don't have to worry about what I'm going to find in my mailbox! It was such a relief when I figured this out.

For the whole past week, I've been complaining to Boyfriend about how awful my spring break was going to be. His was the week before mine - as were the spring breaks of all my friends from high school. I literally had 43 hours to spend with my best friends and Boyfriend before they had to leave to go back to school. It is really nice to know that I'm out of school right now, and other people had to go back after their break, but I would much rather have been able to make beach plans with all my friends than be able to brag that I'm not in school, but they are, and when I go back, I have 5 weeks and then finals before I graduate. They have a bit more than that. At least a week more.

I was complaining, both inwardly and outwardly, about this, until Saturday. And now I am thrilled to have a week where I can not do anything, not have to try to make sure that everyone around me is entertained, and best of all, NOT CHECK THE MAIL SIX TIMES A DAY!!!!

I have a feeling that all three of my letters from grad schools will be waiting for me when I arrive back in Stillwater, USA, but for now, I'm not going to worry about it at all. I can enjoy the last spring break of my undergrad relaxing and having some me time without angsting out about what I'm going to be doing in 6 weeks. Or in the fall. Even if most of the day is spent hearing screaming babies. I can handle that.

Here's to #SB2K13! I hope you had, are having, or will have a great one! :]