I joined Facebook in ...
I had to use my Peru State College email address because as Bestie Betsy said, "They only let college kids in." Bestie Betsy. She was still a sophomore ... she hadn't even yet begun law school.
I was living in a shitty apartment, I was newly married, and it was way back when your status updates started with, "am" or "was" because your linked name always came first.
We were babies.
Lord have mercy.
Fourteen years ago.
I was 22.
I've been to Australia, Rome, and to divorce court. I've gained a baby and lost a gall bladder. I dance in kitchens, listen to Indie music, and slow music, and country music. I dream about Texas and being a full time writer and bed and breakfasts.
I kiss a little boy goodnight, pray for a little boy during the day, and love a little boy every single second of every single day.
I have made some CHOICES in the last 14 years. Some good - some so gratifying that I carried them with me during the trying years.
Some were scalding, terrifying, and wrong.
I have been wrong.
But in the 14 years since I posted my first status update -
I have grown.
And THAT is what we're really all trying to gauge in the end anyway.
The one that worries about me, too.
The one that laces his boots, zips up his coat, and heads out into the cold - or into the fray - or into the arena with me.
The one that dances in the kitchen on Sunday mornings, Saturday nights, or Tuesday afternoons - when the afternoon winter light hangs in the air.
The one that's still there.
The one that stands in the low light of a living room and with careful words, fights for what you have. What you've crafted. What you've built.
The one that's still there when the smoke clears.
The one that listens to the music on the radio on Sunday afternoons, taps his hand on the console, and sings along. The one that raises his voice, bangs on the steering wheel, and laughs when I join in. The one that still doesn't stop singing.
The one that says yes every single time.
Chin out. Shoulders back.
(But not too far back.)
Confident steps, one foot in front of the other.
Breathe it in and out, close your eyes, and
I can do this, it's going to be okay.
I can do this, it's going to be okay.
(But can I really do this?)
I think it'll be okay, but -
Smile bigger. Yes.
That might be an answer.
Your shoes are cute.
I like your hair today.
You're so smart.
I'm so glad you're here.
Tell them every good thing.
Cheer them all on.
And then smile.
Confident steps. One foot in front of the other.
No one is keeping score.
(Are they, though? I think they might be.)
Eyes open at night, a movie playing on the ceiling.
My day, in chunks.
My day, dissected.
My day, a mess.
Tomorrow will be better.
Tomorrow has to be better.
The grocery shopping.
The trash cans.
The dinner dishes.
The ... the ... the ...
Be a go-giver.
Be a go-giver.
Be a go-giver.
Hair down. Hair down.
Why do I have long hair?
Nobody starts a business at 35.
Nobody makes new dreams at 35.
Nobody whispers out into the dark at 35.
(They do, right?)
(But only if -)
Maybe more tomorrow.
On a piece of paper, tucked in between notepads, near my desk - scrawled hurriedly across yellow lines -
And even if you have to crawl.
Sometimes people tell me I have pretty handwriting, but this is anything but. These letters, pushed together look so much like my brother's handwriting that when I saw them the other day, I actually did a double take.
Did I actually write that?
Yes. I did.
It was a passing thought written in a margin and just like always - if it doesn't come out at that second, then the words will clang around in my head.
And I write to feel the quiet.
"I feel like I'm a fraud," I whispered to Craig one night not long ago.
His arm, heavy with assurance and faith, pulled me closer.
Sometimes, my confidence slips down through my toes and before I reach down to gather the remnants,
I have to take a second.
I need a pep talk, I called out to my friends last night.
You can do this.
Baby steps are still steps.
Tell me something good.
And they showed up for me. And sometimes, their words don't even matter. Sometimes, all that matters is the gentle nudge. A hand reached out, a hand that answers.
A second to catch my breath.
When Craig and I first started dating, I told him that sometimes I feel like a banging piano during a refrain. It was the first letter I'd ever mailed him, and I wanted him to know -
Sometimes I have bad days.
And I just think that even on the bad days.
Even on the days that I doubt every single thing about myself.
Even when I feel like I'm not a good writer or teacher.
A good mom.
A good girlfriend.
A good daughter.
Even when I think that I cannot do one thing right -
Even when I don't feel brave or courageous or progressive -
Even when my breaths are shallow and the tears are plenty -
Even when I go to bed early just to stay awake all night -
Even if I have to crawl -
an exhale is coming.
It is almost the holiday season, and it's time.
It's time for the GIANT DUMP OF STUFF that I have bought all year long. Maybe you, too, can benefit from the vast amount of things that have piled up in my Amazon cart. Or, maybe you'll just like a little inside view of what's showing up on my front porch.
Here we go!
1. Tuck's Thanksgiving Shirt. I like themed holiday shirts. I can't help it. One day, he'll roll his eyes at me, but that day ain't today!
4. Deli To Go Containers. I know what you're thinking - why not just buy the stuff at the grocery store. I don't know, Karen. I just like these better. I love that they can be used a couple of times, and I do. not. feel. guilty throwing them away.
5. She Reads Truth Bible. It's just beautiful. With perfect artwork, good study questions, and that gorgeous grey cover - I can't even. It's the best bible I've owned.
6. Remote Controlled Candles. Because ya darn right I need another remote in my life. #checkcheck
And THAT concludes this episode of "What Becky Bought". I'll be back next week.
Happy Holiday Season, everyone!
. About Moi .
I love, love, love flannel sheets and I am really passionate about lists on post it notes and most of the time I'm sad that no one else is as excited as I am about Diet Mountain Dew. I also adore run-on sentences. And if you need an awesome virtual assistant, who is full of personality and really good jokes? Email me. I'm your girl.
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He saw her before he saw
anything else in the room.
- F. Scott Fitzgerald
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