Maybe we all had a problem?

Originally published on 6/29/2017


I went to AA once.
And I wish I could say it was a couple years ago, or back before I got my shit together, but it wasn’t. I was living in Columbia.
It gave me a lot of perspective, but ultimately showed me that I wasn’t necessarily an alcoholic. I didn’t like the idea that I had absolutely no control over alcohol. Everyone in the meeting was kind and supportive. They asked how long it had been since I’d had a drink, and I replied,
“Two days,”
“Don’t worry, this is the hardest part,” they assured me.
However, what I felt in that moment wasn’t hard, and it made me question whether or not I really needed to be there. I wasn’t craving a drink. I was fine with being sober. It was a Tuesday afternoon; why would I be drunk right now? I listened to the members of the group tell their stories, and I couldn’t relate. I’d never started my day with hard liquor. A mimosa, maybe, but that was only on special occasions. I don’t regret going. Attending that meeting was a step in the right direction for me to figure out what exactly my relationship with alcohol was.
Alcohol was one of the last things I got under control. Throughout the process of figuring out why I turn to alcohol so easily, and what exactly it does for me, I realized that I had been taught through socialization by peers, media, and even family, that alcoholic tendencies are a very normal part of our society… and I think that’s kind of fucked up.
After the AA meeting, I shelved my copy of the Big Book and made the decision that I probably wouldn’t ever go back.  I still needed to do something though, so I sobered up for a month. I just wanted to see if I could easily do it.  During that time, I took a notebook and wrote down every time I wanted a drink. It was a journaling technique I was taught in therapy, although I was using it for a specific reason instead of just logging my mentality throughout the day. I wrote down the date and time, what I wanted, and why I wanted it. The answer took me about two seconds to figure out, but I kept journaling anyway until I stopped wanting drinks for emotional reasons.
I’m an extremely emotional person. It’s just part of who I am, and I used to have issues with that. Emotions are what make us human, yet for the longest time, I wanted to deny that I wasn’t overly emotional. I felt that it made it harder for people to take me seriously. So instead of being upset, I would drink. Instead of venting my frustrations, I would drink. Instead of soaking up every ounce of happiness over an exciting event, I would drink. Mental illness didn’t help either. I coped with my depression and anxiety by drinking. During those years, being intoxicated was easier than being sober, but it didn’t solve anything. It just delayed the moment when I finally faced my shit head on, and the things that I had said/done while intoxicated added a ridiculous amount of other stuff that I also had to deal with.
When I moved to Columbia and went back to school, I moved away from the vast majority of my social stressors. I was able to finally start over and just focus on college. Yet, for some reason that I can only guess was habit, I was still drinking at least two nights a week, if not more. It wasn’t quite on the same level. I wasn’t going out and dancing on bars and blacking out. I wasn’t sleeping with a trash can by my bed, but I was waking up with a wine bottle on my nightstand. My recycling bin was mostly filled with empty bottles. I was spending my Friday thinking about the bottle of wine waiting for me at the end of it. I was significantly disappointed when my friends couldn’t make it to dollar margarita night, and would usually wind up going to the liquor store and throwing myself a marg night…alone. Yup, totally normal.
It took me a solid two years to actually see something wrong with that, because our society is so tolerant of alcoholic tendencies, especially in college. Now, the raging drunk who beats their children and spouse obviously needs to sober up and go to AA, but what about the functional alcoholic? What about the person who brags about a dinner of, “fruit salad, okay mostly grapes, okay wine, I’m having wine for dinner,” does that person need a meeting?
Back in my days of doing a lot more than just boozin’ at frat houses, I remember scouring the internet for something that would convince me that I had a problem. I knew I did, but I needed someone else to tell me, and I didn’t think it would be the people doing all of the same things with me.  Anyway, I remember finding a quote on tumblr, and it was something along the lines of,
The second you use a substance to fill a void is the moment you start to abuse it.
It’s stuck with me. We drink to deal with our insecurities, to give us the courage to ask out the attractive person on the other side of the bar. We drink to celebrate. We drink to drown the sorrow of a loss. We drink when we win, and we drink when we lose. Win or lose, we still booze. You aced your final? Hell yeah, let’s go party. You think you failed? Oh well, it’s over, let’s go get drunk to forget about it. Why is this behavior okay, and more importantly, why is it normalized?
This is the part where I have to get really clear about what I’m trying to say, otherwise every time I post a photo of a glass of wine, I’m going to get shit: I’m not saying we should all stop drinking. I’m not sober. What I’m specifically addressing is the normalization of drinking to fill a void, which is 100% an alcoholic tendency. I got a grasp on my drinking by getting very real with myself about why I was drinking. I would turn to alcohol when I had something on my mind that I didn’t want to deal with. A test that I thought I did badly on. Loneliness. The guy I liked was dating someone else. A paper I didn’t want to write. I felt that I couldn’t be funny unless I was three drinks in (which is false).
I’m not talking about sitting around a table with your friends, playing cards and having some drinks. I’m talking about the, “Fuck it, let’s get drunk,” moments that are all over the internet and basically everywhere. I’m talking about drinking to forget about an ex or losing your job, or even spending an entire day looking forward to the drink that’s waiting for you at the end of it. Drinking from an emotional place. Drinking to numb something. Drinking to cope. That’s what I’m talking about.
One fun thing about myself is that I have a really hard time stopping my consumption of alcohol when I’m emotional. I don’t want to deal with whatever is happening that’s making me upset, so I just get another drink. Cutting myself off means sobering up and having to face whatever I’m avoiding. I finally got really sick of being the drunk girl, so I stopped drinking when I was upset. That’s when I have to tell myself, “Nope, I don’t need alcohol right now.”
My weekends with friends went from, “Hey let’s get drunk this weekend. We’re due for a drunk night,” to, “Hey let’s go out,” or, “Hey, let’s have a movie night,” and somehow that mentality has allowed me to actually remember time with my friends. Drinking to get drunk results in a different type of drunken state than just having a few drinks with friends does. I was recently in one of my best friend’s weddings, and we spent the night before the wedding drinking in the bridal suite after the rehearsal dinner. It was like a giant adult sleepover, and it was so much fun. We sat around in our PJs and drank champagne out of plastic cups and talked about life and love and relationships. I woke up the next day feeling completely fine, with all of my memories from the night before fully intact. Whereas on nights when the goal of the night has been to get drunk, things usually end in a much uglier manner.
Granted, a lot of this might have to do with the fact that I’m in my mid-twenties and just don’t feel like doing shots and keg-stands, or going from Jack to Malibu to Fireball to Budweiser and then back to Jack again. I was offered a tequila shot at the reception for the previously mentioned wedding, and I had to give myself a damn pep talk before I took it. Maybe this is just growing up. I’ve mentioned my past drinking problem to people and they say, “You didn’t have a problem, you were just in college. We all did that shit. We all drank multiple nights a week.”So maybe we all had a problem? I don’t know.
I guess all I’m trying to say is that just because it’s everywhere, doesn’t mean it’s normal or healthy. Facing whatever you don’t want to deal with is scary and hard, but no matter how much you drink, you’re going to have to face it eventually. Trust me.


I’m coming back!

Sup, WordPress?

About a year ago, I abandoned ship and decided to take my blog to another platform. Turns out that was a huge mistake. I’m now beginning the process of moving back to old faithful wordpress. Over the next week or so I’ll be uploading some pieces already published on the newer site, and eventually transfer the domain back to this page.


Relationship status.

I’ve been getting a lot of comments about my relationship status lately, or lack thereof. It’s something I’ve never really dealt with much. I guess for awhile I was jumping from relationship to relationship, and then when I was finally single, people just recognized that I needed to be on my own for awhile. Apparently that time ran out, because I s2g every person I’ve spoken to recently has asked if I’m dating anyone.

Even my mother made a comment the other day about how my ideal relationship probably doesn’t exist. I’m sorry, but I call bullshit. What am I supposed to do, settle?

Every session I’ve had with my trainer, at some point during a recovery period, he’s asked me, “Dating anyone yet?” And I fully understand that he’s just trying to make small talk and I’m not bitching about my trainer whatsoever, he kicks my ass and it’s fantastic, but I’m just kinda sick of getting asked about this.

It started during my friend’s wedding weekend, which I was completely prepared for. I was the only single person in the wedding party, and there’s so much talk of love and relationships and marriage with a wedding, so of course I was expecting it.

But it also comes up with random people. “Are you seeing anyone special?” Then they give me those sad eyes, like they feel sorry for me. Which I don’t really understand, because I’m 100% okay with my situation right now, and when I say that out loud to someone, they seem more shocked than the fact that an average looking person is single.

“Oh… well don’t worry, you’ll find someone!”

Yeah… I’m twenty-five. Just because the majority of my friends have chosen to settle down, why am I being treated like there’s something wrong with me for choosing not to?

I’m twenty-five and single. Big whoop.

I’m okay with it.

Have I met a couple people along the way that I would have liked to have dated?

Yeah, absolutely.

But honestly, I think the way everything has worked out has been for the best.

I’m currently at a crossroad. I’ve spent so much time and energy just trying to finish college, that I didn’t really stop to take the time to figure out what happens next. My degree has been unfinished business since I dropped out, and just like I thought it would, finishing college has felt like finally closing the door on everything that’s happened up until this point. I’m in completely uncharted territory.

This isn’t just a new chapter of my life, it’s an entirely new volume.

I don’t particularly want to stay in Missouri, but I also don’t entirely know where I want to be.

I don’t know what I want to do next.

I’m also someone who loves very hard, and can be influenced by others. I’m working on that latter bit, but it’s still definitely something that happens.

I need to figure out my next move. I need to start my own life. I can’t build a life with someone else if I don’t have my own to begin with.

I’m also really fucking happy and content on my own. I know that’s hard for some people to wrap their head around, but I honestly don’t remember the last time I felt lonely. I don’t need someone else to complete me. I am enough for myself.

Do I want that to last forever? Nah, not really.

But for now? Yeah, I’m good. I’ve got shit to figure out.

Mind Over Matter.

I’m back to reading self-help/self-improvement books again because, well, I just feel so damn good while reading them. They give me things to think about and help teach me new ways to keep my mentality positive.

Anyway, I’m reading Jen Sincero’s new book, You are a Badass at Making Money, because I loved the original You are a Badass [which I highly recommend. It changed my life, go read it if you haven’t yet], and yes, I’m reading a book about making money. Why not? I’m twenty-five, fresh out of college, the world is my oyster, and I’d like to have the means to do the shit I want to do.

So one of the things she writes about is how our subconscious view of money can impact the way we feel about making money, and because I am the way I am, I set the book down and started applying that same idea to basically every part of my life that I’m still struggling with.

The brain solidifies what occurs the most. For example, I wound up in a string of relationships that all ended badly. So for the past five years I haven’t bothered with dating because I’ve just assumed it’s all going to be the same bullshit and I don’t want to go through with it again. I stopped looking for dates. I just kept my head down and convinced myself that relationships are overrated.

All is fine until life throws you a curveball to knock you out of your comfort zone. Then you find yourself spending half a semester fighting an internal war about how the cute guy sitting next to you is probably an idiot or a douchebag so there’s no point in talking to him, and if by some miracle he’s neither an idiot nor a douchebag, he’s probably not interested because you’re not that attractive or intelligent anyway.

I’m sorry, WHAT.

I’m so neurotic sometimes it makes me want to scream and then start laughing at myself because of how ridiculous it all is.

Just because all you’ve known in relationships is immaturity, lying, and manipulation, doesn’t mean they’re all going to be that way. Growing up helps, learning to pick better partners helps too.

At one point in time, when I was practicing multiple hours a day, I was a really talented musician. However, actually admitting that was incredibly hard for me because I felt like I was bragging. It shouldn’t really be a shocker that the performances where I amped myself up by telling myself how talented and kickass I was before I walked out on stage went SIGNIFICANTLY better than the ones where my backstage thoughts were about how I had no business performing this incredibly hard piece that only seniors play (I was a sophomore.) When I thought that I was good enough to do it, I nailed it. When I felt like I was a fraud, I sucked. Obviously this was all going on during my mental health decline so that didn’t help much, but you get the idea.

Mentality plays a huge role in everything that you do.

Decide it’s going to be a good day, and it will be.

Tell yourself that you suck and are never going to have your shit together, and you’ll probably be right.

What’s that old saying? “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right,”? Maybe there’s something to that.

Let go of the past. It’s over. It happened. Learn from it and move the fuck on. Don’t let shit that happened when you were nineteen affect the way you view the world and live your life at twenty-five.

I don’t know where I’m going with this. I just had a lot of thoughts so I started typing and now I’m here. That’s probably enough for now. I’m gonna get back to this book. Also I’ve had way too much caffeine today, so I apologize for any run-on sentences. Peace.



I’m about a month an a half away from moving out of an apartment I’ve been living in for the past two years. It’s the longest I’ve ever lived in the same place, and it’s pretty easy to say that I have acquired some shit while living here. Exhausted from browsing through job listings and applying for a few new opportunities, I decided to do something that always makes me feel a lot better: clean.

The thing is, my apartment isn’t that messy. But I realized that I should start going through the shelves in my closet and also everything I’ve stashed in my storage closet, just to make the move a little easier.

I finally parted ways with six pairs of old platform heels that have stood atop the Bohemia bar on several occasions. Those shoes were so damaged, and they weren’t cheap heels either. However, they look like crap and I only wear heels for special occasions nowadays, so it was time to finally throw them away.

I also packed up some clothes that aren’t my style anymore. I held onto them because I knew eventually I would lose enough weight that I’d be able to wear them again, and I was right. I can wear them now. But I tried those old fitted Express button down shirts and looked at myself in the mirror, and it just wasn’t me anymore. So they’re in a donation bag.

I wasn’t ready to be done with my decluttering expedition yet, so I decided to take on my storage closet, which currently resembles Monica Geller’s secret closet. It’s the place I throw things that I don’t know what to do with. I saved boxes from moving in, and also have saved other boxes over the past two years for when I decide to move again. I started pulling things out and came across a box full of random things: some Nyquil that had expired, a lint roller, Christmas bows, and a small silver ring box.

I knew what it was, I had just completely forgotten that it still existed.

I think I threw it in the closet when I first moved in here, because I had no idea what to do with it. It didn’t feel right sitting on my dresser with the rest of my rings and jewelry, and I didn’t know if I should throw it away or try to sell it. So I put it in a random box and threw it into the whatever closet.

I actually put it on, and it’s still my size.  Silver ring with three heart shaped amethyst stones: the ring that I had picked out when a man I once loved promised that one day we’d get married.

It’s comical now. The ring doesn’t look anything like something I would currently wear. Nevermind the fact that my entire life, with the exception of the two years I spent in that relationship, I had/have always thought promise rings were kind of stupid. It’s a precursor ring to your engagement ring. What’s the point?

But I was eighteen and thought I had found the one, which actually just made me laugh out loud while typing that. I remember the day he made that heartfelt speech. I also remember the months that followed. I remember growing up and feeling more like a babysitter than a girlfriend. I remember it all falling apart, along with my belief that love is real. It was a breakup that took a few years to recover from, and I didn’t even realize that I needed to get over it until a couple of years later.

It’s just funny how life works out. I’ve spent the past hour going through clothes that I can’t believe I ever wore, and throwing out shoes that I’m not entirely sure how I used to dance and prance about Kirksville in, so it’s kind of fitting that I would come across a ring that also looks nothing like me.

My life could have been so different if I’d just been a little more traditional. Hell, I’d probably be married by now.

But where’s the fun in that?


Real talk though, what the hell do I do with this ring? Toss it? Sell it? Throw it into Mt. Doom?



Honestly, if you surround yourself with good people, everything else will work itself out.

One of my favorite people in the world got married yesterday, and I had the honor of standing up with her while it happened. It was an incredible weekend. I wish I could put it on repeat forever because it might be the best weekend I’ve had in a very long time.

The man she married isn’t from the fine state of Missouri, so we had no idea who the groomsmen were, or what they were like. We knew their names, and that was it. It’s kind of nerve-wracking. You’re combining two groups of people for basically an entire weekend and hopefully they’ll like each other and get along.  If you’re lucky like we were, you’ll wind up with the absolute best case scenario: everybody winds up making some new friends and having the time of their lives, and even starts planning a reunion trip to Vegas next summer.

Two really fantastic, good people married each other. Two people that surrounded themselves with other fantastic, good people (heyyyy). So of course, we all hit it off immediately and had a blast.

Also, in my opinion, anyone that you can scream the lyrics to Queen and Journey songs with is an A+ human being.

There was one conversation I had that birthed that italicized quote, and it just stuck with me for the rest of the night as I danced like no one was watching, despite the fact that many people were. Not entirely sure if that’s verbatim, the music was loud, I was tired, and there was alcohol, but it was something along those lines. No matter what happens in life, what decisions you struggle to make, jobs you get or lose… as long as you have good people by your side, everything is going to be just fine.

It might even be…top-notch.


Love, pt. I

Every time I have thought I’ve been in love it tastes different.

It tastes like cheap whiskey,

That flavor I love so much, but with a bitter aftertaste.

It tastes like ashtrays and flavored vodka.

Because it’s never really felt right.

They’ve all been variations of each other,

And all very childish forms of love.

The first was rebellious, and taught me I was more adventurous than I originally believed.

The second was traditional and tame, and taught me that I am not.

The third was manipulative, and taught me that the more I feel chained, the more I will fight back.

The fourth was kind and quiet, and taught me that I crave fire.

I’ve never felt free while in love.

I’ve always felt like I needed to play a role,

But the more comfortable I become with someone, the less I am able to restrict myself.

Holding back my real self doesn’t really sound like love,

So, to be completely honest,

I’m not sure I’ve ever truly been in love.

I’m not entirely sure I’ve ever been loved in the way that everyone writes about.

That great love.

They love parts of me,

They pick and choose like my personality is some buffet.

And when I reveal a part that they didn’t select,

They start playing offense,

Trying to take me down a notch,

Trying to keep me in line.

And as I learned the third time around,

The more I feel controlled, the more fire I will breathe,

And I will burn your life to the ground if you try to chain me to it.

So although I count four men,

No – boys,

Maybe I haven’t been in love at all.

But that’s okay.

I’ll just keep my fire burning,

Keep expanding my boundaries,

Keep climbing mountains,

And loving with all of my heart,

And maybe someday I’ll meet someone who sees a woman who breathes fire and thinks,

Where have you been all my life?

Because I want a love that tastes like rich coffee and fresh rain,

Something that doesn’t leave a bitter taste in my mouth.

I want a love that gives me butterflies and keeps me on my toes,

That makes me laugh so hard my stomach hurts.

I want a love that is empowering and supportive,

Two separate lives that choose to build a life together.


I want a love that can breathe fire, too.