Monday, April 11, 2016

Hopelessly Confused

Warning: This blog post is going to be extremely long. I encourage you to read it, but please please make sure you read this when you are free. 

Wow, so I never actually thought there would be a blog post thirteen this early to be rather honest with you as well as myself. I needed to do a follow up blog on blog post twelve. Remember how I said that this blog might be a way of  tracking my spiritual growth, well it's what I am going to use as now. Maybe in the future I will continue.

So anyway if you have not read my previous blog ( which I do encourage you to), it was totally and completely about love. However my point of view has been shifted again. As some of you who are reading this may or may not know I was at a retreat this past weekend. This retreat has changed my view point on love and perhaps even expanded my previous ideas.

In order for you reader to understand this blog and myself.... we need to take it back to second grade. Yes, I said it second grade.. What happened in second grade? My very first crush. His name was Danny. ( Danny if you ever do read this... Hi!!!). I liked Danny. He was cute... he had the same faith I had?... not a lot to go on here. I knew Danny second to fifth grade in my Catholic school.

So here you are thinking.. that's perfectly normal and cute which it is. It is cute and that age. Unfortunately for me I have continued that pattern of liking guys and in the end it would leave me empty. I bet you're thinking why empty? How could a crush leave you empty?

Because as most girls I am a total hopeless romantic.

I fed qualities into guys just so I would feel that they are perfect and we could be perfect. I would imagine dating them or being with them ( and that may sound creepy). It's like wanting and craving a life long soul mate in a person you like only due to physical attributes.

So like Danny and many other guys as second grade went on it was a cycle. One that I did not see as unhealthy. I thought it was perfectly normal and healthy to like guys in this way or form. Soon I gained the courage to actually speak to my crushes and it became worse because I would heighten their good qualities. I didn't think at the time that I could possibly talk to God or Jesus about matters of my love life.

I would think:God has better things to worry about then Luke not liking you or just tell him what you're thankful for and what you need don't bother God with your feelings on your love life. 

Perhaps I would pray that they would like me back just so like most of my friends I would be in a relationship with a guy who I could trust and have to be there with me. It's increasingly hard to have this constant reminder that you haven't had your first boyfriend or kiss and you're standing and waiting for these incredible things to occur. It's not to say I am jealous or envious just that all my life as unrealistic and cheesy also cliche as it may sound: I want my fairy tale ending. I want to be married. I want the ups and downs. I want kids. Maybe I want the white house with the picket fence. Who knows?

As much as I would love to continue the story on previous past crushes of mine... I need to go to the present.

First year of college. 
Wow, where was my mind back then? Obviously on books. Anyways....I met a guy. Thought he was different. Isn't it how it always begins? He serenaded me with his guitar. It was great. In my heart I knew he wasn't right for me. His carelessness for his grades and how he was constantly with other girls and that's not to say that there is a problem with having female friends. However once I got to know him I understood why he had many female friends. He was charming and seemingly into his faith which was Christian. There aren't a lot of differences between Catholics and Christians. For me, the other guys faith ( the ones I crushed on) was never a big deal to me. I figured that why should it matter if you have different faiths if that person was possibly meant for you. Well, he turned out to not be what I painted him to be.

EVERYONE was telling me this but I did ignore it because in my heart I felt that maybe it could be... especially because for once the feelings were reciprocated and he liked me back. Soon enough however, as I got to get to know him I didn't really want anything to do with him. You're probably wondering why? The truth is one day... my catholic friends from college convinced me to go to this Spirit & Truth. There was this brilliant podcast by Sarah Swafford playing. A lot of things she said stuck out to me. She said the most important word is: Use. Then I realized shortly after that podcast was that he was trying to USE me. ( in the sense that he would ask for my completed work the previous semester) She also said to lay all your insecurities in front of Jesus and that the time will come when you will look next to you and you'll see the person next to you, the one you're meant to be with. I prayed a lot about this person. I wanted to ask God what was his purpose. Why was he in my life? I can tell you that I did receive an  answer. I was closer to the conclusion I am at now but not quite. The answer was: he was a lesson, this boy was in my life to teach me that I can let God know whatever is on my mind whether it be boys or insecurities. I can just lay them all out and trust that he will always listen. BUT... like I said I wasn't quite there.

Shortly after this guy was a part of my life, I met someone new. He was different. No, he was ACTUALLY different. He was into his faith and his family.  So here I go... He is sweet. He is kind. He wasn't using me or anything. I liked him because of the way he was so into his faith. I was just coming back to being at the place I was before ( this will be in a separate post ... someday). So of course I continued to see him. He made me want to be more into my faith. SO maybe as much of a crush as it was it was also a spiritual crush. Then there was this retreat.. it was around the corner. Of course, I asked God once more, why him? Why of all people was this amazing guy in my life? Of course, the pattern was prevalent to the point where I would heighten all his qualities. I started to realize then that it was wrong to like someone in this way because as much as I did like his personality I also liked his appearance. It wasn't until one night in a cabin, in this retreat where I spoke to 2 amazing friends of mine that they helped me come to this conclusion. It's wrong to objectify someone. When we do this we build broken houses with guys that maybe not the ones. By broken house she meant that we picture this ending but we're doing this in the wrong way. By liking someone for their appearance, we're subconsciously doing this. It's mostly by feeding qualities into people to make us think that we have a soulmate. You need to TRUST that God is making your perfect house. Slowly but surely God is setting the foundation for that perfect house. He will give you a soulmate when he feels the time is right. Another reason that a friend of mine brought up was that maybe God presents you with these people because they need prayers. In her example the guy she liked was struggling with his vocation ( which is basically if he should be a priest or get married). So she prayed for him and he chose his vocation to become a priest.  I thank this person that I liked because he made me want to be more into my faith, he made me want to be closer to God. Perhaps, that was his purpose. I pray for him because as I said he is genuinely a good person. He deserves to be happy.


If you tell me about a certain time you've walked into a room of strangers and didn't quite feel as if you were in the right place because everyone had a connection except you; I can right off the bat tell you that's my life. My life for the most part has been a sequence of awkward, good, and bad moments.

It all started in what one of my friends considers the armpit of America, New Jersey. I was placed in a ESL class (standard procedure). I believe this one girl was a bully and just about picked on everyone. It was at the point where she pinched me and of course I pinched back. The teacher sided with me entirely on the fact that I was a brand new student and well the girl didn't have a good track record. However, that was enough to mark me off to the rest of the class.

By the time second grade came along, my mother decided to place me in private school (no, it had nothing to do with the pinching incident). The public school system in the north isn't the best. So imagine this, walking into a classroom full of students who had not only known each other but were wearing uniforms. Then me of course wearing not a uniform. As I walked in the teacher obligated everyone to introduce themselves. So as I introduced myself, I curtsied. I repeat, I curtsied. I still cringe about this. Of course there was a cute boy in my class.

Only in second grade did we have a Valentine's day dance, where of course my mother picked an outfit that day I dreaded and the boy who I thought was cute was a short distance from me. When I ask my mother what I did in that situation, her answer wasn't a shock. I ran in circles around the dance floor.

Anyways needless to say I didn't fit in with the popular bunch in my small and quaint classroom. I was different. I wore Mickey Mouse pins on my private school ties in fourth grade AND although I did cheerleading I would skip because the HIGH SCHOOL coaches made me feel as if I did nothing right. However, this didn't mean I didn't want to fit in. I longed to belong to the trio of girls who sat at the end of our classroom lunch table. I tried. I tried so hard to the point where I was bullied. I was a sensitive child as most only children are. The turning point was when I was told what days I could sit in with this trio of cool girls. It wasn't up until Melissa stood up for me. I sat with other girls who were different. There was one girl who was more alienated than I was and she even sat with us. Harmony and having more than one friend in my class seemed like a literal blessing.

But before I got too comfortable....

My mom decided to move us all to Georgia. Yes, New Jersey to Georgia. It's just as easy for me to tell you I cried the whole way. It felt as if I cried the whole 15 hours. Sure the vacations to Georgia weren't too bad but MOVING. At the time it felt as if it was the end of my world (I was only 10).

Unfortunately for me the public school system here was actually better than New Jersey so I attended public school. Unfortunately for me I didn't have the best wardrobe. I mean I wore a uniform 5 days a week; What can you expect? So there I was huge sweatshirts and sweatpants every single day (Snow in Jersey, not a joke) and coming into a classroom who AGAIN everyone knew each other, the status quo was established and I didn't belong to any of them(At least this time they weren't all in uniform right?) . I slowly got acquainted with everyone and made some friends. I still wanted to be "in". It all seems stupid, you know? Anyways everyone was wearing Justice and of course I had to have Justice and I did. I still didn't fit in. None of this bothered me as much because I had one friend named Amber who became my best friend and I wasn't the only addition to the class.. Also it's worth mentioning the girl who lived next to me, never liked me either although I never exchanged but 2 words with her.

I thought things were looking up for me in middle school but of course, I was wrong. 6th grade I made one of my best friends and we were super close simply because we both had a mutual dislike of the girl in my neighborhood who didn't like me for any reason. Things were looking up for me and my like of Hannah Montana seemed to be a good but rather bad conversation starter. I was known as the girl obsessed with Hannah Montana. My best friend and I shared a similar goal of attempting to fit in but finding ourselves to be unsuccessful. The public school system was not in my favor the status quo established in elementary school carried on into middle school and of course the glorious 4 years of high school. I did the talent show in 6th grade and take a wild guess at what I sang... Hannah Montana (shocker).

7th grade I was still super attached to my best friend and we thought we could conquer the world since we had the same class. The universe however had other plans in store for us both. I was placed in the homeroom with the meanest girl possible and she hated me (again I do not know why).  She gave me a blank piece of paper and called it an invite to her party. She accused both my best friend and I of being lesbians. Of course my mother handled this. I was shy to the point where I didn't stand up for myself and maybe if I did it wouldn't have gotten so bad.

8th grade I embraced the fact I wasn't part of the established food chain. If the food chain in middle school existed I was simply nonexistent. I began to feel misunderstood for some reason or another prompting black eyeliner and Paramore. I was as edgy as it got. I began an ongoing experimentation with makeup, short hair and a straightener. Needless to say it was rather distrastorus. I had friends who were in-between as I was. I began having friends who perhaps were edgier and did things I didn't do but respected that I didn't do those things.

I think throughout my social experimentation I have gathered to never judge anyone. It's okay to be different.
High school to me felt like a turning point, because at the time I still didn't believe elementary and middle school food chains applied to the best four years of your life. I socialized with the less cooler people. If social climbing was a thing, in high school I was still bottom of the ladder. It wasn't until Junior year I found my niche. In 9th grade I befriended a girl named Geo, who after gym disappeared in my life. 11th grade brought us back together through a mutual friend and through Geo I met my group. We all had strict parents, a love for One Direction, and we all were in a way just normal. We weren't totally alienated and we didn't totally fit in. Our group was diverse and filled with laughter.

For once I actually liked being different. 

Senior year was uneventful and it was then that I became okay with who I was. I made friends with a Danish foreign exchange student and I made another close friend that I slowly began to trust more than anyone. I didn't really let popularity get to me. I didn't need a ladder to climb and I didn't need a food chain to be a part of. I was okay with being me. My friends from junior year carried onto senior year and the longest journey seemed to be over. 

College was the literal turning point for me in so many ways.

I walked into a college with amazing friends back home and as a commuter I saw no point in befriending anyone. You're probably wondering how is that a turning point? Well I didn't try to make friends, it just happened. One day I was somewhat early to class and sat in between Kim and Maria. I began to become fully happy with who I was and this has led me into the most amazing and transforming phase in my life. I love who I'm becoming. I love the people I surround myself with and the constant laughter provided through much needed times. College is the point in life where you learn to embrace your differences and find people who are just as different and if not even more different than you are.