The Burglar In the Garage

When my sister announced her pregnancy, I was over the moon to become an aunt. I immediately knew I was going to share my love of books with my future nephew. I was going to instill in him the love of reading that I had my entire life. Fortunately, I had all the materials at my disposal.

Deep within my mom’s garage were boxes filled with the tools I used to become the bibliophile I am today. Among all the Christmas decorations and toys that lost their luster, I came across a familiar box. Written in my Grandma’s handwriting, it said, “Tracy’s Books.” I traced my finger over the words, picking up the dust that had settled from the years of neglect. Inside contained my mom’s first books, which happened to be the first books I ever read myself.

Situated next to that box was one that read “Kaileigh’s Books” in my mom’s huge blocked letter handwriting. I pulled it down and peered inside, remembering all the different books that I had read. I picked up a book that I did not recognize from the cover. Upon flipping through the pages, my eyes landed on a word that was at the center of my childhood.

I loved having my mom read to me as a child. It was a great way for us to bond and created special moments. Except that one moment was almost ruined when I caught my own mom in a lie.

This particular book I was holding was about this town that had a “robber” come. He had just left another town that he had “robbed” and he was trying to find the best house to “rob.” Except that “robber” does not start with a “b” like it was printed in my book.

“Mom, ‘robber’ starts with a ‘rrrr’ sound! But that word,” I exclaimed, pointing to the page, “begins with the letter ‘B.’ Do you not know how to sound out words?”

Laughter came from down the hall where my Grandma was doing laundry. My mom’s brow furrowed.

“It means the same thing,” my mom explained and quickly tried to get back to reading.

“No. Call Grandma in here. We need help figuring this one out,” I ordered.

“Burglar!” my Grandma yelled from down the hall. “The book is about a burglar!”

My mom sat fuming and still refused to say the word.

“Sound it out, mom,” I goaded. “Burrg-lerr.” I felt pleased. She continued the story with “robber.” “If you’re not going to do it right, then let’s pick another book!”

But she mustered through and at least waited until I was asleep to hide the book.

Her attempt to hide this book and remove it from family history was in vain since I suddenly had it back in my hands. I put it under my arm and triumphantly walked back into the house. My mom was sitting at the table, deep in thought over her iPad, presumably searching baby clothes. I threw the book on the table.

“Hey Mom, you should read this to the baby.”



Staring At the Altar

Staring At the Altar: On Not Being Engaged When Everyone Else Is

At 25 years old, I see more engagement posts on Facebook than ever before. And, it’s terrifying. Here I am, staring at the altar from a not so safe distance with hungry eyes.

staring at the altar

It’s terrifying in two senses. The first being that how did that kid that would pick his nose and look at it fool someone into marrying him before I got married. And the second being that how did these idiots figure out that they were ready to get married.

Because I think I’m ready, but I know I’m not. I have a few close friends getting married and the way they talk about it makes me want to die. Colors and seating arrangements and parental opinions – no thanks! I’d rather just hang out and watch re-runs of cartoons and eat candy for breakfast (which is what I did today).

Even though I know for an undeniable fact that I am not ready, I am incredibly jealous of everyone else that is engaged and I make that fact known to my poor boyfriend.

We’ve almost been together for two years. We live together. Hell, we have a dog together. So, it drives me insane when people that have been dating for approximately 6 months are coming out as engaged.

I should not even be comparing my relationship to theirs because all relationships are different. But, ARE YOU SERIOUS? And when the guy comes out and says something like, “I’ve never even met her parents!” I throw things. My boyfriend is well acquainted with my entire family. I even had him meet other people’s parents for more approval.

How are these people getting married when my boyfriend and I are way more solid? And whenever I bring it up to him, I think a part of his soul dies. I also truly believe that everytime I think about marriage, it adds another day to my waiting for my ring.

Ohhhhhh. The ring. That is the biggest source of envy ever. Flipping through Facebook, sometimes I wonder how those girls can walk straight because of how big the ring is. And it fills me with such rage. That is the least fair part about it. HOW DID THESE MEN AFFORD RINGS WHEN THEY’VE ONLY BEEN DATING FOR LIKE 3 MONTHS?

I dated a man once that was planning on proposing to me. He wrote down the date he wanted to do it (March 14th, 2010) and started to save. But, he definitely wouldn’t have been able to buy a ring the moment he decided to propose. He was just about as poor as I was at the time. Where are these guys that have already been saving for the ring before they even meet the girl?

The moral of this is that the time I’ve spent obsessing over other people’s rings and engagements and weddings is time that I could have spent with my SO – just chilling and not applying any pressure to him. I’ve created a ticking time bomb that might go off the next time I get drunk and cry that everyone else is getting married so why can’t we? It’s not about keeping up with the Joneses. It’s about figuring out when its right for you.

Who even knows when he’ll propose? There are some bets floating around. I may or may not have taken money. Only time will tell.

Maybe I should have just told him I was waiting until marriage and then I’d definitely be married by now.



Trouble With Writing While Depressed

happy_violinist

There is this weird idea, and maybe I’m the only person that has it, that creativity often stems from a place of sadness. So, why am I not more creative for as sad as I am?

I tend to complain a lot about my lack of creativity. Why am I not writing enough? I tried to carry around a notebook to write down funny things, but it ended up just being used for notes from a recent doctor’s visit. I try to work on writing more, but often I feel discouraged and just end right back up on the couch watching Bob’s Burgers for the millionth time.

My depression, when it rears its ugly head, manifests itself in sheer laziness. When I’m in the midst of a bad spout, typically around this time of year, I do nothing. I lay on the couch and accomplish nothing. If it weren’t for my job, I highly doubt I would even leave the house. The last thing I want to do is get up from the couch and grab my computer to get any writing done.

The other day my mom was telling me how she suggested to a friend to get her daughter a journal based off how much I wrote when I was younger. She said how she always saw me writing. I told her that I still write and she immediately trailed off and then started to tell me about her new noisy neighbors. See! Even my mom thinks I’m dropping the ball when it comes to writing.

Isn’t that the trouble though with being depressed? Not wanting to do anything. Let alone try to be creative. So when I read articles about how J.K. Rowling was depressed and she is the richest author ever, I fall even deeper into that sinkhole. How will I ever be able to escape that kind of reoccurring loop?

The worst part is that when I finally do write – it sucks. There is so much doom and gloom in my own head and I hate to regurgitate that back up for others to try and process.

Or maybe it was decent and I just deleted pure gold because I’m so in my head that I’m unable to discern between gold and trash. That’s what makes editing even harder suddenly. Do you know how many times I’ve deleted this and re-written it?

And, that’s the problem while writing while depressed. You’re too in your own head to get anything down.