Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Autumn Wish List

Dear autumn,

I love you.


1. Pick a pumpkin.
2. Drive somewhere to see fall colors.
3. Make and eat (allergically) caramel apples. Have someone on standby with an epi pen.
4. Watch a scary movie.
5. Drink apple cider.
6. Enjoy the outdoors.
7. Attend MSP Fashion Week.
8. Attend Oyster Fest.
9. Roast pumpkin seeds.
10. Enjoy many bonfires.

What's on your list? I've already completed a handful of these, but don't mind repeating.

Monday, September 24, 2012

I wanna know, have you ever seen the rain?

Are you there friends? It’s me, Jennifer. Remember me? I’m the one who had a bit of a breakdown last month…but I’m back.

Today began just like any other day.

There’s a scene in The Office where Robert California asks Erin to explain her morning to him. She starts by saying “Well, I woke up, and -” to which he replies “Erin, when you recount your day, never say you woke up. That’s a waste of your time. That’s how every day is begun for everyone since the dawn of man.” Enlightened, she says, “Very smart. Very Smart! … Suddenly, I was awake.”

Suddenly, I was awake. I ate my Pumpkin Spice waffles, pulled together an outfit for a fashion show viewing this evening, dragged my body to my car to follow (mindlessly) the windy roads to work. I made my rounds, updated the ERP system, and read through several taxing emails. The lunch bell rang and a sigh of relief inadvertently escaped me.

Just as I was routinely uncapping the steam-filled Tupperware for my Monday lunch, I noticed two visitors at the table next to me. After a brief introduction (artists (friends of my parents) from California who had been performing in MN over the weekend), one of the singers dove off into a pool of Creedence Clearwater Revival that instantly changed the pace of my day. He crooned out a couple of Vietnamese songs intermittent with funny (albeit foreign to me) banter. He capped the performance with a rendition of “Let it Be,” which always sends pangs to my heart, no matter the circumstance. There is something so sweet and tragic about this song that brings tears to my eyes and a lump to my throat, every.single.time. And the whole lunch room singing along? Guhhhhh.

While we’re on the subject, I thought you should know that I hope that song is played at my funeral. Morbid, but I’m a planner.

Perhaps it was more bittersweet that a blind man was singing this, especially the line “I wake up to the sound of music, Mother Mary comes to me…” because I can easily picture him waking to and breathing music all of the time. I can’t help but feel a little bad for people who have a handicap, even though I am sure they are in no need of my sympathy. This man is 32 years old, an accomplished musician who gets to travel and do what he loves, not to mention that his guitar skills are fascinating. And maybe if it was not for his blindness, he wouldn’t be so in tune to his tunes. Everything for a reason, right? 

"Someone told me long ago - there's a calm before the storm. I know, it's been comin' for some time. When it's over, so they say, it'll rain a sunny day. I know, shinin' down like water. I wanna know, have you ever seen the rain? I wanna know, have you ever seen the rain...comin' down on a sunny day?"

Anyway, this is the merriest of Mondays for his visit alone. It makes you stop and think and really hear the music.

Saturday, September 1, 2012


I've been a bit absent from this blog lately; not because I don't have thoughts swarming my mind on an hourly basis, but because I haven't the energy to transcribe these whirring fragments, stories, and ideas into tangible structures.

And now, it's grown to the point where I need some sort of outlet, what this blog was meant to be in the first place. I've often thought that I don't want to be a collector of disheartening memories of the lower points of my life. I did enough of that in the past. I have the heart-wrenching hand-written journals to prove it. But this is real life, my friends, and while my blogs are meant to remember the good and cultivate happiness, sometimes I just can't feel content 100% of the time.

Up until 2009, I was quite the pessimist. I drained myself and the people around me because I was so insecure, unsteady, erratic. Then, something changed. Maybe it was the natural order of growing up. Maybe it was talking to someone that helped. Maybe it was studying abroad, changing lifestyles and the people around me. Whatever it was, I began to feel happy. More specifically, the past year has been an overwhelming abundance of happiness. Even when situations should have wore me down, I faced them with more confidence and level-headed thinking than ever before.

This past month, I feel like I lost that magic cloak of content. Every area of my life has me feeling that I'm engaging in a losing battle; my to-do list is never ending and my stress level increasing. There's a nail in my tire and all of the air and energy is slowly seeping and escaping my hold. It could be that I'm in a slump at work. It could be more things demanding my time and attention. Lack of sleep. Lack of motivation to exercise regularly. Poor eating habits. Disinterest in several things, even writing at times. My life is messy, cluttered, frantic, overbooked; it's a gnarled sweater that is slowly unraveling from  both here and there. 

So what will I do after I am done venting to the Internet? I will learn how to knit it all back together, one string at a time.