Blurred Lines?

No, I’m not talking about that stupid Robin Thicke song everyone is up in arms about. If I wanted to write a piece about women’s rights, or lack thereof, I would submit it to The Eagle.

I went to the eye doctor yesterday for the first time in almost six years. I had gotten an eye exam in high school and moved to DC nearly a year later. School, friends, work took precedence-going to a doctor, any doctor, did not. It took me nearly four years to finally see a specialist for what I thought was a set of terrible tummyaches. I could have known how sick I really was so much sooner-but I digress.

So I went to the eye doctor, who spent the better part of the exam marveling at how bad my eyesight was for someone my age. It wasn’t until I told him what my prescription had been for the contacts I had just taken out that he actually stopped and stared.

“That’s nearly half the measurements that I’m getting right now. How have you been able to see?!”

For over five years, everything I have been seeing has been blurry and fuzzy. There haven’t been words on street signs for years, haven’t been straight edges on sidewalks. Faces were softer, rounder, friendlier. And honestly? I didn’t mind it so much.

One of my best friends sees the world in black, and in white. His world’s gradient drops off like Wile E. Coyote on a Saturday morning. Everything about the world he lives in is sharp, crystal clear, with no room for anything remotely fuzzy. And we’ve been fighting a lot lately, more than usual, and I think this might be why.

Here I am, stumbling through life by-quite literally-feeling my way through it. I don’t think in finality, or extremes, or even in simple yes or no. It lets me see what others really mean, instead of what they’re putting on for show. They let you hold onto hope without feeling the sharp pangs of finality that cut too deeply too often for your own good. Blurred lines can be messy, sure, but the way I see it, they can be beautiful, too.

The doctor gave me a new pair of contacts to try, with the right prescription this time. Everything is sharp, clear-there are edges and words on signs and smiles on faces that I was apparently missing. I guess I just was able to feel when someone grinned, and honestly, that’s enough for me. Because honestly, the clarity is becoming just too much, and it’s giving me a headache.

Blurred Lines?

The Shiny New Toy Syndrome

It’s happening again.

There used to be three, and then there were two. Those of us left, we called it the Shiny New Toy Syndrome, the need for the newest model, the flashiest toy, with the brightest lasers and the glow-in-the dark plastic. No one ever lasted more than a few months, because he was always looking for that shiny new toy to play with. Being forgotten at a hotel just meant a new friend to play with, all for the price listed on the TV below. And those of us who were older models, we learned what the bottom of a toy box looked like all too well.

And it’s not like this was the first time this happened to me. I’m not exactly built to be limited edition, or the season’s must-have shelf stocker. I’m the teddy bear you curl up with at night because the fold-out wings hurt your ribs when you hug the plastics too tightly. I’m the ratty puppy you brought to your first apartment because the thought of leaving college without it was too much to handle.

I may not be the newest, but I’m definitely what you’d call a classic. If you accidentally leave me on the hotel floor, you better believe that car is turning around to bring me back. And I thought you understood that, thought you saw my value for more than just a toy on a shelf. But now I just feel like a security blanket, folded neatly along the wall for your convenience.

There used to be two, and now there’s just one. I’m stuck up on a shelf watching you play with your shiny new toy, with the painted-on dimples and the babydoll smile I can’t compete with. You’re a slave to the syndrome and you don’t even realize it. Or maybe you do, and you’re just too guilty to donate me with the rest of the toys you’ve outgrown. Call it jealousy, call it crazy, call me out of my mind. But I know shiny new toys when I see them and I can never stitch myself up well enough to compare to this year’s new models.

So if you need me, I’ll be between the bed and the wall, forgotten once more until you reach down and find me covered in dust bunnies and dead bugs. Maybe then you’ll take a minute to dust me off, and I’ll get a night cuddled in your arms, before back on the shelf I go.

The Shiny New Toy Syndrome

An Apology On An iPhone.

I knew this was going to happen.

I told you, I told you that as soon as something bigger and better came along I was going to forget all about this blog and leave you all hanging on the edge of your seat. I didn’t tell you, however, that it was going to happen after the very first entry-and for that, I’m truly sorry. I know that anyone who is willing to give my silly little blog a chance deserves better than that.
The truth is, I need this blog more than I think I let on. I know I’ve talked about how important writing is to me and how it’s the only outlet I can really use and appreciate. What I haven’t explained fully is that I live in a mindset where there are hundreds upon thousands of thoughts and emotions rattling around in my head at any given time. Trying to voice those idea coherently, trying to sort them into some sort of pattern, trying to make sense of my surroundings even-it’s so daunting. In this particular case, bigger thoughts are definitely not better.
Tonight was a night where that that kind of struggle was apparent, from the way that I stuttered through conversations with my best friend to spacing out completely and not realizing someone had asked me a direct question. Tonight is the type of night I would want to put down in words why my mind is so mixed up and I can’t sort out the things that matter from the matters that don’t.
I will be better about this blog. I have to, for my own sake.
This entire post was written on the notepad of my iPhone, composed entirely while waiting for the evening’s last Metro. I have a feeling this type of post will become more common as we go on. It was a quick way to get my thoughts out loud without having to wait until I got my hands on my Mac, and it’s comforting to know that when I need to say something I can write it out right now and post it when I have the time and the means to later.
I do want to talk about my weekend, but I have work in the morning and packing to do tonight. So much has changed, so much to talk about, but it will just have to wait a couple of hours.
And I promise, nothing bigger or better is gonna stand in my way this time.
An Apology On An iPhone.

Laminated Pages.

When I was in the second grade, my teacher Mrs. Ford decided that it would be a great learning experience for all of her students to write their own stories, split the stories up into pages, and illustrate each page with their own markers and crayons (and let’s be real, snot and dirt, too). She would then take those pages, laminate them and bind them together, and let us give them to our parents as gifts at the end of the year. It was a great way to get our young minds working, and a great way for us to saddle our parents with yet another little-kid memento to cry over when we headed off to college. 

 

I remember thinking this was the coolest thing on the planet-cooler than the Pokemon cards my older cousin had given me; cooler than Kenya, which I had just done a report on and thought was the coolest place ever because it had elephants; even cooler than staying up late and watching Ren and Stimpy when I was TOTALLY NOT ALLOWED TO DO THAT. So I sat down at my desk and began to write, and write, and write. 

 

At the end of the year, most kids had about six or seven books to give to their beaming parents. I had twenty-two.

 

Writing has always kind of been my thing. My freshman year of high school, part of our final English grade was to write a sonnet in under an hour. Mine took about twelve minutes, and I got full credit. When my friends used to panic about the essays we had to turn in for class, I was usually the one who sat down at seven the night before it was due, threw my ideas into a coherent five pages of complete and total bullshit, and called it a night by ten. Imagine their fury when our grades would come back and I’d score several points higher on a paper I barely even remembered writing, and now you’ll understand why I see writing as my thing. You want to trip me up? Hand me a math problem. I’ll be out of commission for weeks.

 

So what never really made sense to me was the fact that I didn’t keep a diary. I never stored a journal under my pillow, full of my secret crushes on Nick or Kurtis or whoever happened to be the shyest cute boy in the class. I had notebooks strewn about in my room, with a monologue written on the first few pages or a poem scribbled on the back cover, but never anything consistent or really, coherent. Even as I got older and I began my love affair with all things Internet, I never really considered keeping a blog. 

 

Except here i am, starting a blog, and not really sure how to go about doing so.

 

I don’t want this introduction post to go on for too long, so I guess I’ll just kind of outline what I figure I’ll be writing about here.

1. Photo Challenge. I’m actually a huge fan of those photo challenges where you take one photo a day and post about why it’s significant. I’d like to add a written element, too, in order to make things interesting.

2. Current events and world issues. I just graduated from college with a degree in International Relations, and I really like to just read about what’s going on in our world. I also tend to have a lot to say about those things, and not a lot of people who are willing to listen. SO. Surprise, captive audience!

3. My yearly goals. I’ve been slacking on what I’ve been trying to accomplish in my life, especially since I’ve graduated and have to pretend to be a real person now, and I figure if I talk about it out loud that’s a form of motivation to get my behind in gear. I’ll elaborate more on those as they come up.

4. My feels. I’m what you could call overly empathetic, or (as my friends so charmingly call it), “a big ol’ bag of feels.” Writing should help me sort through the hundreds of thoughts running through my head, and also maybe will help people understand why I think the way I do. Not that I really expect people to read this, but it’s a nice thought.

 

Maybe this will be just another half-filled virtual notebook with some doodles scribbled in the margins. Maybe it’ll be another procrastination tool in my arsenal of internet distractions. But maybe, just maybe, someone will take a look at this and help me get my thoughts laminated and bound for others to enjoy. It’s a nice thought, after all, and my parents could put it next to my second-grade books on the shelf.

 

Whatever this is, it’s me. I hope you like it. 

Laminated Pages.