Hello. Yes. I’m alive.
Approximately one week ago today, I got behind in my homework. My life, since that ill-fated day, has looked a lot like this:
My last semester of college isn’t letting me go without a fight. Saying that makes me want to cry. It’s my last semester. Oh my goodness.
I’m all sorts of emotional this month. Three Fridays ago, for example, the Institute hosted a 90’s party, and the whole night, I fought tears, I was so happy. Someone did a M*A*S*H game and I almost cried. I went to work the next day, crying. I spoke in church the day after about callings. Cried. I’m writing this post (actually, this was seven days ago when I started writing this post) and thinking about how I’m almost done with school, my calling, a huge segment of my life. I’m almost crying right now.
Man alive, I’m like a leaky faucet.
At any rate, life is moving forward. Here are the mundane, weird, and super exciting details to know about my life lately:
Sleep (AKA: The Lack Thereof) **
My health is on the incline after being on the decline. I’ve been in bad shape. Apparently, stressing out so much during the day that you start having bad, stress-induced dreams during the nighttime is a thing. My sleep schedule is all out of whack. And I keep having dreams about demonic secret shoppers trying to manipulate me into selling bakery goods at slashed prices. And dreams about boys I’ve dated and liked breaking my heart into a billion pieces. Also: I dreamed that I was dating Benedict Cumberbatch, which was just lovely. But all I want in this world is to have one night of peace, stress free. Dating Benedict Cumberbatch, by the way, was stressful as heck.
**I’ve Got a Dream, I’ve Got a Dream **
This segment can be divided into two parts.
**Part A: Epiphany**
As I was sitting in my nonfiction class last Monday, my professor asked us to write about something that keeps us up at night, something we can use as material for our 20-page braided essay. The whole class period, I had been in a stewish mood.
Pretend this is me. Stewing.
Every nonfiction class (for that matter, literary studies class) I have ever been in has celebrated/highlighted pieces where sex is exploited and Mormonism is trashed, beaten, made fun of, and dragged through the mud. These essays are used as examples of what to do. These essays are trumped as the cream of the crop. These essays are figurative badges of honor that hang around the writers’ chests for eternity — “Good old Jilly from ’09 wrote this piece. She’s practically a prodigy. Such a brave soul for writing against Utah’s version of “The Man”!” I have had to sit in these classes, biting my tongue as somebody says, “I’m an ex-Mormon, so I really identified with and loved this piece for all of the atrocities within the church it highlights.” Blah blah blah stupid Mormonism blah blah blah let me write about how Mormonism is chauvinistic slash patriarchal slash oppressive blah blah blah why should we be ashamed of our bodies? flaunt it all! blah blah blame the LDS church. Excuse my snideness, but I was really quite put off.
So picture me, stewing. After three years within the English department, it hit me over the head like an anvil: all any of these star department alumni, these writers everyone fawns over at Helicon West and in Scribendi, have to say about anything is against the church or celebrates doing whatever you want with your body, and people adore them because they write well. You write well, so why on earth are you not defending your beliefs? I stared at my notebook with a lump in my throat.
_Why aren’t I? _
It was an extremely personal and revealing moment for me, one that has given me vision and direction.
Writing is about celebrating differences, voices, and if I can’t talk about the beliefs that define me, what can I talk about?
Part B: Dream Job
The LDS Church Magazines have open internships for the summer and the fall. This is the first year I’ll be able to apply, and this time, I have some real experience behind me. I am so, so, so, so, SO excited. This is my dream, guys! Or one step towards it, anyway. I go to Salt Lake next Friday to vie for a spot. Prayers would be lovely. [:
**Family History **
Last week, I randomly decided to hop into a family history class, and I found a picture of my grandma when she was in high school. My grandma died when I was five, and seeing that picture of her, I felt something lurch inside of me. Tears sprang in my eyes and I felt like a child going across the street to her house again, shouting, “Grandma!” That day was a blessing. Furthermore, we keep discovering awesome things, like how I’ve got traces of Cherokee blood in my veins. I’ll write more about this, because I’m now way obsessed, but family history is incredible. You need to start participating in it if you haven’t.
**Ask and Ye Shall Receive **
This part is about dating. I stopped blogging about dating a while ago because I was blogging about it in the wrong way entirely. But this time is different. This year, I’ve staged my own Dating Intervention — I’m intervening on behalf of myself. I signed up for Marriage Prep with the sole intention of learning how to date better. I’ve been trying harder. There are a lot of weird things about me — when I like someone a whole lot, I become quite inconsistent with them. I’m terrified of letting people know I’m interested. I take relationships way more seriously than most people to avoid being hurt. All sorts of stuff. And Heavenly Father’s trying to teach me and I’m trying to become better. We’re simpatico, or getting there. So, to all of the adults metaphysically pinching my ear and asking me, “So, when you gonna get married and start having babies?” I assure that I am doing my part. Mr. Whoever He Is just has to do his.
**Babies, Oh Babies **
Babies are everywhere. On Facebook, at Lee’s, in my homeward, on campus. I simultaneously want to hide from them and stare at them. I was never one of those girls growing up who was super baby hungry — a term which, by the way, makes me feel like I sucked on a lemon — but I guess you get there when you’re in your twenties. The idea of starting a family is the most magical, beautiful thing in the world to me all of a sudden.
I have a confession to make. I’ve seen every new Sherlock episode. I could spoil it so bad, but I’m refraining. I actually feel really guilty. The end.
If there’s one thing you should know about introverts, it’s that WE NEED OUR ALONE TIME. I have had none this week, and it’s been sucking the life out of me. Part of the reason I’m so physically messed up right now is because I’m not addressing my personality needs. I know full well that if I spend excess amounts of time talking to people, I’m going to putter out and turn into an unintelligible corpse who won’t leave its cave without feeling smothered. This week I have some, and it’s going to be paradise. Introverts can’t handle too much social time. It turns us into monsters.
**New Peeve **
Monday I saw a business ad on Facebook that said “Celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. with 25% off our entire store!” No. No and no and no and no. If you own a business, don’t you dare capitalize on a memorial holiday. Who celebrates the greatest civil rights leader in the United States by spending money on themselves? It’s trite. It’s so trite. I’ve seen friends (who happen to be small business owners) run ads like that for 9/11, MLK Jr. Day, Veteran’s Day, etc. — DO NOT capitalize on a holiday celebrating the actions of the deceased to make yourself richer. It’s crazy that we think that’s okay.
And I guess that that is my life lately. Lots of busyness, lots of hope for the future, lots of ranting, but lots of contentment. I’ll check in again soon.