Because I’m here… and you’re there.

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I admire many people. ¬†I look up to them. ¬†I look up to some very wonderful people, some that fit into today’s standards of “normal” some who dwell outside of it. ¬†I admire these people for the effect they’ve had on my life and for a connection we made either repeatedly or years and years ago. ¬†I admire these people because they exist, because I can relate, they can relate or because they are there. ¬†I look up to people I haven’t seen since a cold night a decade ago, or the other night sharing a thought just because. ¬†I admire people for what they are, what they’re living through, and what they can share, and what I can share. ¬†I admire and look up to you.

Maybe I admire you because of a song. ¬†Listening to an old song, in a cold garage together taught me that I can get through it. ¬†It taught me about shared pain derived from very different circumstances that weren’t very different after all. ¬†It taught me that I can fight through anything, that a song can save me. ¬†You taught me that I am alive, and that I have to fight to stay that way, and sometimes it’s a simple as a song. ¬†I learned that music can save my life, even if I can’t save yours. ¬†I look up to you even now, because I understand what happened, and you understood me. ¬†Things that we didn’t share personally, things that were not the same, often could be linked between us with music. ¬†It’s a simple connection that can save a life, and as you learned, could destroy it. ¬†I admire you despite the noose in the garage, and I admire you because of what you taught me.

Maybe I admire you, maybe I look up to you, because you fight. ¬†Because you defy what your own body has limited you to. ¬†I admire you for doing what you want to do, what you set out to do, purely because life has told you “no”. ¬†You do it anyways, I can understand that limitation, I know what life has limited me to, or rather tried to limit me to. ¬†I admire you because you fight it anyway, and even though the world says “it’s impossible”, you refuse to embrace it, and do what you want anyway. ¬†I look up to that, because the fact that you fight your own body every day means that I can too. ¬†It means that I don’t have to give in, and stop trying. ¬†That I can accomplish things despite it. ¬†That I can go ahead and move on, even if I’m scared to.

Could it be that I look up to you because I know the very feeling that I can see in your eyes? ¬†Could it be that remember that feeling, that dive straight to the bottom, and I remember the fight to STAY at the bottom because self destruction is ever so fun. ¬†I remember that fight. ¬†I look up to you because you thrive, even though you shouldn’t. ¬†I look up to you because I’m different, and you’re different, and yet we’re still here. ¬†I look up to you because I remember, and I have my own pain. ¬†That feeling I can see, that emotion, that haunts your eyes, I’ve had it too. ¬†I’ll have it again. The reason may be different, or maybe in reality it’s the same. ¬†I can relate. ¬†Maybe I can relate to the ENTIRE THING, or maybe it’s a small thread of what had been, would could’ve been, what will happen. ¬†I look up to you because you exist, and you’re still here.

I admire you because of a flower.  A simple wildflower.  I admire you because you taught me that something simple can change a life, can move you forward even as your clinging to your past.  I admire you because that simple goddamned flower made me realize that life is still there, even as I was fighting against it.  That stupid flower died, and I kept living, long past the smile it brought me.  I admire you because you live for the simple moments, the smiles, the simple connection that everyone else deems insignificant.

I admire you because you can express yourself in ways I cannot. ¬†You have paint and canvas, you have pencils and napkins, you have screams and songs. ¬†You have things I do not. ¬†I am limited to words, and sometimes the words refuse to come even thought my fingers ache to create them. ¬†I can look at the mess you’ve made with paint, glue, and graphite. ¬†I can look at things, I can hear things I relate to even when I can’t create myself. ¬†Everyone gets blocked, but I look up to you because you create differently than I do. ¬†Perhaps it’s envy, but maybe it’s also needing to know that other people are still creating. ¬†I look up to you because I can write, but you can create in color and depth. ¬†I can create words that stir my soul (maybe others?) but my words are limited to what I want to share. ¬†You share them with the world, while I hide mine. ¬†I admire you because you’re not me, and I can still find myself in something you’ve created.

Maybe I admire you because you have the balls to leave it all behind and start fresh. ¬†I could do that once, and I did, but now I have roots and cannot. ¬†Maybe it’s because I don’t want to, but I do enjoy watching others restart what they’ve made. ¬†Maybe it’s because you’re not afraid of change, because I’m not either, because we embrace it. ¬†Maybe I look to you because I no longer desire immediate change, but can appreciate the need for it. ¬†Living vicariously? ¬†Not quite. ¬†More like remembering the feeling. ¬†Remembering the past, and watching it replay through someone else.

I admire you because of our past. ¬†Because of your past. ¬†Because of my future. ¬†I admire many of you for reasons you’ll never understand, and while you may not want someone looking up to you, you don’t have the choice. ¬†It’s my choice to make, and even though it may rock you to your core, you don’t have to let it. ¬†Or maybe you should. ¬†You should let that realization that the choices you make, the way you think, or maybe what you did a decade ago has indeed impacted someone else. ¬†Maybe it’s me, maybe it’s someone you’d never suspect. ¬†But regardless, I admire you. ¬†For reasons I understand, and reasons I do not. ¬†For reasons that maybe I’ll never know.

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Growing Up or Growing Into?

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It’s Saturday Night y’all! ¬†The boyfriend is hanging out with his brother, and my kid is asleep. ¬†Logically the next step is brew some coffee and write some bullshit. ¬†So yeah. ¬†Here I am. ¬†On the internet. ¬†Three minutes ago I had a realization, something that hit me so hard, so fast, that I immediately felt that need to get the words out of my head. ¬†I can’t find my favorite pen, so blog it is.

I am a New Sarah.

Over the past 15 years, I have reinvented myself several times. ¬†No one Sarah was completely the same. ¬†Some Sarah’s were no good, some Sarah’s were too work-involved, some Sarah’s were at the bottom of the bottle, and some Sarah’s were domesticated housewifes. ¬†So here we go again, I finally realized that I am a completely new Sarah again.

This new Me has been evolving for roughly 3 years. ¬†The Divorce from “He who shall not be named” threw me to rock-bottom. ¬†I wasn’t the best person, I wasn’t the best mom, and I wasn’t a good friend. ¬†Honestly, I didn’t even like me. ¬†Not even a little bit. ¬†Actually, if Present-Day-Me met Me-From-3-Years ago, I’d slap her. ¬†Or me. ¬†Whatever, you get the gist.

I had to have a couple of major blows to my life to straighten out. ¬†Those blows sucked, but I finally got it figured out and apparently just ran with it. ¬†Usually my reinventions are¬†somewhat¬†similar. ¬†Some sort of aspect stays with the next Me, thankfully, this time, the only thing that has stuck is my fuck-you-I-can-do-this attitude. ¬†I think I’m just so amazed because of it. ¬†Looking back on 3 years ago, I am borderline ashamed. ¬†I have moments of deep shame, but then I remind myself that everything I did, caused, or went through, kicked my ass enough to learn from it. ¬†Nonetheless, I am glad to say goodbye to the Old Sarah. ¬†I am glad to kiss that life goodbye and stop glancing over my shoulder to make sure it’s not following me.

Today was a perfect day. ¬†The Boyfriend had to work, so we had a Noodle and Mama Day. ¬†We relaxed together a bit this morning, and after a quick breakfast hopped in the car and headed out. ¬†We ran a couple of errands and then had lunch together. ¬†After lunch, we went straight to the local farmer’s market and bought mushrooms (Noodle), Onions (as a¬†complement¬†to Noodle’s mushrooms), and peanut butter cookies (Me, duh). ¬†Then we went shopping, we roamed around a couple of stores, causing a bit of trouble and looking for deals. ¬†At Target I learned that my kid can con cookies off of ANY bakery in ANY store ANNNNND go back for SECONDS.

We came back to the house and set up some venison chops to marinate, and went right back outside. ¬†It was a gorgeous day, and I don’t think either one of us could stay inside another day. ¬†I had bought her a big jug of bubbles, so I sipped my iced coffee and she blew and chased down and stomped hundreds of bubbles. ¬†A good grilled dinner and some relaxing, and she’s tucked into bed asleep. ¬†I managed to clean the house before I ended up on my computer.

What made me realize the change in myself is that as I brewed my cup of coffee I realized I was/am completely happy and content. ¬†That moment, as my coffee brewed, I thought back and realized how different not only I was, but how different I felt compared to a few years ago. ¬†I finally learned how to live for me (and my daughter) instead of to someone else’s standards, or how I thought I was *supposed* to be. ¬†I finally learned to love ME and my life, all the little quirks and troubles. ¬†I learned to be happy with myself and enjoy the little things, and do it sober.

Things are not perfect and this life has had some pretty shitty moments, but now I realize that it will never be perfect, but I can make it as damn close as I can, and enjoy the ride there.

 

It feels good to stop looking into the past.

Coffee In the Mornings

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There is nothing I like better than a quiet morning and a cup of coffee. ¬†It gives me some time to relax and get ready for the day. ¬†Kind of setting the day off on the the right foot. ¬†During the summer it’s even nicer, before work I’ll sit out on the front step and drink my coffee there. ¬†Usually it is dead silent still (I get up for work pretty early) and I can enjoy nature. ¬†Winter puts a damper on that, but on the weekends, I’ll usually get up a bit early and relax on the couch and read the news.

Coffee has always equaled peace to me. ¬†A time to wind down and clear my head. ¬†I think I’ve been drinking coffee since I was 14 years old, and it still tastes the best with a journal and pen laid out in front of me. ¬†I’ve found it hard to write on occasion if I don’t have a hot cup of coffee, it’s become that much of a routine in my life (Well gee, after 12 years I guess that was to be expected).

Sitting down with a cup of coffee has kept my brain in line more times that I’d like to admit. ¬†When I’m upset or stressed out, sometimes the solution is a few quiet moments and some rich coffee. ¬†It gives me that opportunity to breathe and think about what’s going on and become more rational. ¬†One of the perks, that shows up eventually, is that it gives me a chance to reflect (not only on the stupid stuff but..) on the good things in my life. ¬†It gives me a chance to realize that a particular problem is not world-ending, but in fact I am lucky and that I need to be more grateful.

I’ve been journaling since I learned how to write. ¬†There was something alluring about writing down your world in a book, and as I grew older, I began to like the stereotypical coffee, coffee house and journal time. ¬†Now that I have a child, I have my own desk and “quiet spot” to write in. ¬†Journaling (or blogging, or writing stupid shit on a napkin at 4 am because that’s the only thing you have to write on) I believe has made me a better person, it’s something I think that if people tried a few times, they would eventually pick up. ¬†I bought Noodle her first journal not too long ago. ¬†She now makes a big production out of sitting in bed with me in the evenings so we can write together. ¬†Her journaling is a lot more simple, but it gives her something to do and a way to explain things (with horrible kid spelling) ie: Today we went to the forest preserve, that made me happy. ¬†It’s also something that her and I BOTH do, not totally “together” but at the same time with each other. ¬†She knows that when she gets older, and I’m ancient, or when she asks as an adult, she’ll get all of my journals (I have more than 40 at this point)… and that will be a great way for her and whatever grandchildren I’ve¬†accumulated¬†at that point to learn about me. ¬†Hopefully it’s a trait she develops as well as she gets older.

So for now, I’m off to make some more coffee. Let the weekend begin.

 

A Bitch Called Hope

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There’s this song by Blood for Blood (if you haven’t heard them and don’t like hardcore, don’t waste your time. ¬†You’ll want to stab yourself in the ears.) called “A Bitch Called Hope”. ¬†I used to relate to that song a lot, hell even now, more than 8 years later. ¬†Hope is a hard thing to hold onto sometimes, but one thing I’ve realized through all of these years? ¬†I need to have hope. ¬†I need hope to thrive, to survive, and to strive for more. ¬†With out hope I get nowhere… as I proved for a couple years as a teenager.

At the same time though, when you hope and pray for something, especially when you’ve worked your ass off for it, and whatever it is falls through? ¬†It’s devastating. ¬†Sometimes hope can almost destroy you in the end, and knowing that is what makes it so hard. ¬†Hope is a bitch, a cold-hearted bitch, and that stupid bitch will screw you over if you give it the chance. ¬†So sometimes I’m wary of hope.

I’ve always lived by the motto: Hope for the best, expect the worst and work your fucking ass off in the meantime. ¬†I think that whole line of thought is what has gotten me labeled as a pessimist more than a handful of times, but you know what? ¬†It works for me. ¬†It keeps my ass in gear, my mind working, and helps me prepare for the worst in any¬†scenario. ¬†It allows me to continue to bust ass for something I want, but kind prepare for if things don’t work out as planned. ¬†Almost mutes the devastation if it comes my way.

There has been so much going on in the past few years, quite honestly a lot of it got me down for a while there. ¬†In the not to recent past I had almost¬†given up hope that things would get better. ¬†I saw nothing in my dead end jobs, nothing good coming out of being a single mother working sometimes upwards of 16 hour days. ¬†I lost the motivation to love my life and improve what I didn’t love. ¬†I did the basics for my daughter, made her life as perfect as I could, but as for everything else? ¬†I shut down. ¬†In all reality, that helpless feeling I had as I watched my life circle the drain broke me. ¬†It did, it broke me far worse than the abusive marriage I was in, my self-caused train wreck teen years, anything. ¬†That hope that I had clung to for so many years just¬†disappeared.

When things were getting to be damned near unbearable, I finally caught a break. ¬†I was offered a job, and then immediately offered my current job. ¬†Then, like a brick through a bay window, that hope was back. ¬†I knew that if I kept busting ass, life would get better. ¬†You know what? ¬†It most definitely has. ¬†It’s never ending hard work, but it’s worth it. ¬†Last Spring/late winter, one year ago, I was sitting at this kitchen table trying to figure out how to afford my gas bill. ¬†I was barely making enough to afford food, much less my bills and medical treatments. ¬†I was sitting at this table, praying for a hand up, a break, something. ¬†I was headfirst into a bottle a lot of those nights, because at that point I didn’t even want to cope. ¬†I just wanted peace.

Now? ¬†Things are much better. ¬†Not perfect, but enough to make me happy. ¬†I’m still at a wonderful job, I’m in a wonderful relationship, and I’m working on my relationships with my family and a few old friends. ¬†I realized that I need to keep busting my ass and fix my life, and since I was given that sliver of hope, it’s been a fight to keep it ever since. ¬†It’s nice to be able to look back and reflect, the contrast between last year and this one…. it just proves that it was worth it all. ¬†That things DO get better if you work for it, and having that little bit of hope just pushes you along.

Hope is still a bitch though, but hope is here to stay.

Back in the game.

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I had coffee with one of my good friends last night. ¬†Her and I have been friends for years, we’ve known each other since we were kids back in the old neighborhood. ¬†After I moved out we lost contact for a few years until I moved into an apartment with my ex-husband in Lindenhurst. ¬†One day when I was doing laundry, I bumped into her on the stairs. ¬†The girl I had known from the neighborhood lived in the same building with me. ¬†I was shocked, mostly because it wasn’t a huge building, it only had 12 units in it…. and was one of many buildings. ¬†What were the chances that we ended up in the same place?

She was there for it all.  She was there when I was pregnant with my daughter, her family brought me a gift after we came home from the hospital.  She was there when I was sick that year with undiagnosed Crohns.  She was there to see the fights with my ex-husband, her family was there to call the police for me when he beat me up.  She was there to face him when he blew up.  She was there when I put him in jail for domestic abuse.  She was there when I had to get my bruises photographed while my husband was in a cop car.  And she was there when he was arraigned the next morning.

She was there when I started a new life, when I bought my house, divorced my husband, worked through becoming a single mom.  She played a big part in my life.

Then life got busy.  She moved, I started two jobs, and life went on and we lost touch for a little while.

Then her ass finally joined facebook and we started talking again. ¬†She came over for coffee (like old times) last night, hung out with me, my daughter, and it was like we never missed any time at all. ¬†It was nice talking to someone who knows my past, who is completely on my side, and isn’t only friends with me when it benefits her. ¬†It was nice hearing her family wanted to say hi, and hearing the stories about them and her boyfriend. ¬†It was nice telling her all the stuff Noodle has been doing, and about Ryan. ¬†It was hilarious getting riled up about the same shit we used to. ¬†Before I knew it, 4 hours had passed.

There are plans to continue hanging out.  Continue.

I am happy.

Good friends are hard to come by, and the ones that are there can pick up where we left off with out a blink. ¬†I’m lucky to have her and my other friends in my life, everyone has had such a positive impact on me and my daughter, and I’m grateful for every last one of them. ¬†:)

Luck comes in the form of a wrench.

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Sitting on my couch right now, the mini-me is eating her lunch and my Dad and The Boyfriend are installing my new water heater. ¬†I can’t help but think about how lucky I am. ¬†I’m lucky because my Dad bought me a new water heater as a gift, so I wouldn’t be broke. ¬†I’m lucky that Dad and Ry are installing it for me, since I don’t think I could even lift the tank, there for saving me money in labor. ¬†I’m a hands on girl, but sometimes brute strength is essential. ¬†So instead of going broke and pulling every muscle in my body, I get to relax and listen to them chatter¬†among¬†themselves.

I had a little conversation with The Boyfriend last night. ¬†I told him how much I appreciate the help he’s been giving me. ¬†This house had gotten so overwhelming with all of the remodeling and cleaning on the To-Do List. ¬†Working 40+ hours a week and dealing with Crohns made the whole ordeal so incredibly daunting I damn near had an anxiety attack. ¬†Since The Boyfriend arrived and booted his way into my life he’s done nothing but help me. ¬†From painting my house to minor repairs. ¬†To ceiling fans, thermostats, and now the water heater. ¬†When he started steam cleaning the carpets (I still have carpet in the bedroom) and scrubbing cabinets last night I realized how lucky I am.

As far as I’m concerned, it takes a special someone to really see what a person needs. ¬†When I asked him why he does so much for me, the little repairs and such, he responded with “I see how much the little things make you happy.” ¬†That kind of person is someone worth holding on to. ¬†I’m very lucky I met him, much more that we’ve been able to stick it out through out all the various drama and issues thus far.

You never really know where a relationship is heading, you never really know if it’ll last. ¬†I’m not just talking about love, I’m talking about friendships. ¬†If there is one thing I’ve learned over the past handful of years is that you have to learn how to enjoy things in the moment. ¬†Make the memories that mean something, that way you’ll always have a bit of that someone in your heart (whether or not you like it). ¬†These days I surround myself with people who matter. ¬†People who show compassion, people I care about, people whom I’d go above and beyond for as well as vice versa. ¬†It’s much easier to live a happy life if you minimize the toxicity in it. ¬†It’s hard to see the negative aspects sometimes, but when you do, when you rid yourself of them, you feel a difference. ¬†Trust me.

I’m lucky enough, finally, at this point in my life, to not only have a wonderful family but a secure set of friends and a boyfriend… all of which I’d do just about anything for (sorry kids, my kidneys are MIIIINE). ¬†It took a long time to figure out who and what I needed in my life, but now? ¬†Even on the worst days, there’s warmth inside of me… instead of just regret. ¬†So I think I’m going to go make a cup of tea and watch the boys work. ¬†I hope everyone has had a great weekend so far. ¬†I’ll be back for more random writing later!

 

 

[ps. Sorry for the un-funny, not-violent, almost-profanity-free blog.  Just had to get all of that crap out of my head.  :)]

I’m Not Alone

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It’s been a while since I’ve posted a video I like, so here ya go! ¬†Not Alone by All That Remains.

This one is for the boyfriend. ¬†This song reminds me of him because through the past handful of months he’s been there for me anytime I needed him. ¬†Whether I just had a bad day, wasn’t feeling good, or medical appointments. ¬†Anytime I’ve needed to talk to someone he’s been there. ¬†Anytime I needed help, he’s been there. ¬†I’m grateful I met him and I have him in my life. ¬†Here’s to not killing him and stashing him in my trunk! :)

Savior by Rise Against

This one is for my friends. ¬†I have many many memories with this song, no matter when it comes on, which friend I’m with, there is singing and laughter and smiles. ¬†I love you guys.

Parallels by As I Lay Dying

This one I love because (one it has an awesome guitar solo) it reminds me there is more to life than just trying to survive.  :)