Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I said yes

Life for the past two weeks has been a huge whirlwind. On May 16th my boyfriend proposed to me on a beautiful day on the beach in Hyannis, Mass. We rode our bikes to the beach, walked around for a while, then walked out onto a stone jetty where he popped the question and I cried so much I could hardly talk. I think back to when we first started talking and he was still in Iraq and we were learning as much as we could about one another from 6,000 miles apart, and I would think about him and his safety and how wonderful he was every second. I'd wake up in the middle of the night and run to the computer to see if he was online because of the time difference, just so I could make sure he was ok. It was an intense way to start a relationship-- I worried for the first 3 months we knew each other that he would die before I ever got to kiss him. It brought our connection to a different level. We weren't just two people in different cities getting to know each other... we were two people who were absolutely supposed to meet, no questions asked, getting to know each other with the backdrop of war and the constant overarching fear that something would happen.

We don't take each other for granted, that's one good thing that came out of it. And now I get to marry him. It still shocking to me, two weeks later. He has amazed me in some way every single day since day one a year and a half ago, and I know he'll continue for the rest of our lives. There's no way I could ever be more perfect for another person, or that I could ever love someone as selflessly and truly as I love him. I love him for everything he has done and will do, how much he loves people and how I've never doubted for one second that we were created to be together.

Once we were watching a show on the History Channel about the beginning of the universe. They were talking about stars and how everything in the universe is made from stardust. I think that was the moment we agreed that we must have been made from the same star, because it's like our cells talk to each other and pull at one another like opposite poles. It's more than just being someones "soulmate," it's the feeling that the tiniest parts of ourselves match and have been looking for one another since the very beginning of time.

Friday, May 8, 2009


It hasn't stopped raining this week. I honestly thought we were past all that, now that it's May and all. I have a strange connection to the weather. I feel directly affected by what it's doing outside. In the winter, I have a hard time functioning normally because everything is dead and frozen and cold. And dark. The darkness in winter drives me insane. I had couple of really bleak weeks this past winter where I could hardly do anything. It felt like a task just getting out of bed.

That's why I look forward to spring and summer so much. The extra sunlight, the warmth, the greenness everywhere-- I really need that to function. I can't even think about writing sometimes in the winter. As if writing weren't already a daunting and impossible task, winter just makes it even harder. But in the spring and summer, I feel almost powered by the sunlight and the warm air and the feeling of possibility.

This week was pretty crappy. I was dealing with my brand spanking new disease, missing my boyfriend like mad, and feeling generally cut off from the world outside of my house and my office. The rain exacerbated everything. One stomach ache was enough to send me into a meltdown the other night.

But today, something shifted. I woke up before 7 and the sky was already bright blue and it was warm enough for me to throw open my window. I stayed in bed and finished the book Water for Elephants. I have a few issues with it, but overall it was good. When I finished it, I sort of had an epiphany, albeit a little one. I just want to write, that's what i want. I want to do that with my life. I've never seen myself as being happy working for someone. The first job I ever had was teaching flute lessons, and I'm still doing it. Self-employment is demanding, but so much more rewarding than toiling away for someone else.

I'm not the first person to say these things or want these things, and I'm not naive. I'm aware of the size of this ambition and how absolutely difficult it'll be. But whatever. I'm only 23. There is absolutely no reason I should be abandoning my dreams right now. None whatsoever.

And all this from a little damn sunshine.

Friday, May 1, 2009


I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis on Tuesday, thus wrapping up years of wondering why my stomach is so sensitive and I sometimes have such pain that I don't want to do anything. I was stupid for waiting so long to see a doctor, but the past few months of tests have finally resulted in a nice, shiny answer: UC. Now what? Medicines have been started, books have been taken from the library, google has been googled. It's funny-- all it takes is a diagnoses and then things start moving in the right direction. The thing that bothers me is now I have to deal with knowing this is a chronic disease that I'll have forever unless they remove my large intestine. That's sort of a bummer, considering how fond I am of my God-given body parts, even if they've given me some trouble over the years. The plus side of it all is that there are treatments, medicinal and holistic, and I'm already working on trying both. Also there's the body's ability to heal itself, so I'm not ruling that out, either. Come on, I've read The Secret.

Submission four is due on Monday, and as of right now, I have zero annotations done, I haven't finished one of my books, and my story is being gutted and revised to the point where I'm starting over and trying again. At least it's going to rain all weekend and Matt has the Reserves, so the weather and the boy won't be there as tempting, beautiful distractions. Are you happy, Submission Four? I will focus soley on you this weekend. (Next step: Get myself out of bed and do some yoga so I can start thinking!)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Writing is agony sometimes. I have my second submission due on March 9th, and I've only got one of my two craft annotations completed and my short story is a miserable mess right now. I know what I want this story to become, and sometimes that's the worst part about being a writer. It's all up in my head, it makes sense up here, it all pans out properly. But on paper it doesn't work as well. There are holes and voice issues and awkward transitions and it's clear where I was trying too hard and also where I wasn't trying hard enough.

We got snow yesterday. 11.5 inches to be exact. I'm inclined to associate my writing problems with the weather. I swear, this winter is merciless. It just won't quit.

My 23rd birthday is a week from today. I'm looking forward to it, actually. Last year my boyfriend was in Iraq, but this year he'll be here with me. Though I enjoyed the flowers from 6,000 miles away, it'll be better to have him in person, as it always is. I'm excited to turn 23, too. It feel like a mature number. I know this will be a big year. I started my MFA, hopefully will have an engagement ring on my finger in the not-so-distant future, and feel ready to take on the world. I'm ready.

I suppose I should get back to writing. I'm going to pray for this story. I hope I don't totally destory (typo of DESTROY that I find perfectly appropriate) the heart of it.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

My gym membership, which had been frozen for the month of January, unfroze itself yesterday, thus forcing me to make use of my $34.95 a month fee and use the facilities. I had mixed feelings about this after I saw the charge on my online banking statement. Part of me was irritated-- why would I want to work out? I didn't unfreeze the membership. They didn't even contact me! But then another part of me was secretly, somehow, happy about it. I've been need to work out, to stretch my rusty muscles and move my lazy limbs. I've been spending so much time stationary, writing and reading, two activities that do not lend themselves very well to physical activity. So I went, and I worked out my arms until the muscles burned and then I used the elliptical machine until my cheeks felt flushed and I could feel the endorphins.

But today... I just can't go. I can't bring myself to change out of my pajamas right now. I don't have it in me to go outside... because it's TEN degrees out there. I don't care how much a gym membership costs, how badly my butt could use some squats and a run on the treadmill, how good it feels to move. I WILL NOT GO OUTSIDE WHEN IT'S THIS COLD. I refuse. And when I do venture out later today, I'll be wearing my long underwear, two pairs of socks, and possibly two coats. I'm not kidding. I can't deal with the cold.

I need to be warm. I love my bed. I have nothing against the days in July that practically sizzle, the air heavy and thick with humidity. No, I'd take a million days like that over one day like this. I can handle heat. I don't mind sweating, or when my legs stick to plastic and leather seats, or being so hot I can hardly breathe. I enjoy that. I embrace the heat. I would rather suffocate on the hottest summer day than freeze on a cold one.

That's all I have to say about that. I feel very strongly about this issue. I need to move to Southern California... what the heck am I doing in New England?

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Let's talk about love

Who I love
Originally uploaded by antaram310
It's almost silly how much I love him. Mostly, I love the littlest things of all: the way his eyes crinkle almost all the way shut when he smiles, the tiny scar on the top left corner of his lip, the shape of his face, the movement of his hands, when something funny takes him by surprise and he laughs genuinely, how perfectly warm he always is, even when I'm shivering cold, how easily I fall asleep curled up with him, his outward seriousness and his hidden inward silliness that not many people get to see.

I also love his motivation, his honesty, his loyalty, and his talent. He's going to be famous someday.

Liquid Motivation

Liquid Motivation
Originally uploaded by antaram310
It was snowing yesterday, mercilessly, and I was doing MFA work and feeling stuck. I made a mug of dark chocolate hot cocoa and loaded it up with miniature marshmallows. I watched them bob around on the surface for a while before drinking them up, one by one. I'm sure some people would be disgusted by the texture of melting marshmallows, but I love it. They're slippery and they are somewhere between being a solid and being a liquid. The heat on my tongue melts them completely.

Why was I paying so much attention to melting marshmallows?

Why, because I had craft annotations to write, of course!

Another attempt

I always make blogs, then I forget about them for a while, and then the urge to blog comes over me months later and I make a new one. I have that problem a lot, I think-- I get an idea, and the idea excites me, so I act on it immediately, and then after a little while, the idea simmers and cools and pretty soon it's not as thrilling as it was at first.

That's so depressing, isn't it?

That's why I'm giving this another shot. I like journaling, but it's such a private, quiet act. Blogging is more public. Granted, I could be the only one who ever reads this thing, but just the act of putting my words into a public forum of some sort is interesting. I also like the immediacy of typing. When I write by hand, the words take longer to form, the ideas move slower, everything is physical. But typing is instant: the words appear as I think them, and my brain doesn't have to slow down to wait.

I guess I like instant gratification... that's sort of the vibe I'm getting from this blog.

Today the sun is out finally. I didn't leave the house yesterday because it was snowing. That's one of the perks of being unemployed: when the weather sucks, you don't have to leave the house if you don't want to. I did my craft annotations for my first writing submission and thought about writing quite a bit, but couldn't actually do it. I think this blog will help with that, too. Sometimes I just need to type for a little while to get the ideas moving. It's not about having an entire story worked out in your head before you start, it's about just starting. You just write. Just go. That's what I need to do.

One of my brothers recently moved into his own place, but he left a lot of his junk here. One thing he left was a bag of his old Stop and Shop work shirts. My other brother just came into my room and said he wanted to throw on one of the shirts, walk into S&S, grab some boxes, and walk out to see if anyone said anything to him. That made me laugh. He would do that, too. And it would be hysterical.

Alright... the driveway is calling me. I'm going to shovel and think, and hopefully come back in and write. Or go to the gym, since my stupid gym unfroze my membership today and charged my for the month of February. Guess that means I'm getting my fat butt back in shape now. Woo.