Wednesday, April 15, 2015


Homesickness can strike with no warning, and tonight I have it bad. It's been almost five months since I was home last, at Thanksgiving, and it's a little over two months until I get to be home again. Provo does have a sense of familiarity and comfort to it, but it lacks the family part. This time in my life is always shifting and unstable, but most of all it's hard being a grown up. It's hard knowing that I can't stay at home for lengths at a time and that things will never be the same. There are plenty of perks to being of age, like going where you want and feeling capable, but sometimes I just want to be home.

Calgary is home to me now. I love it, and I miss it. I love my parents, my dog, my sister, my brother-in-law, my niece and my friends. I love that the Flames are in the playoffs and driving on Deerfoot. I love Canada and distance does make the heart grow fonder. This is getting sappy and it's late and I'm feeling the stress of finals and finishing up the semester. Times are changing once more, as they do every 3 1/2 months, and it's nice to think of things that are constant.

I'm going home on June but it's only for a little over two weeks. I'm lucky to have my parents, especially my mom, able to travel to Utah so often. I switch back in forth between longing for change and new adventures and never wanting things to end. It's the Libra in me that tries to balance them equally. I can't say that I'm Canadian and I can't say that I'm from Utah, so I'm not exactly sure where I belong. When I'm here I miss Canada and when I'm there I miss Provo. I also miss London and want to live in a big city when I graduate.

I guess part of me feels lost. I've felt this way before, especially when I first moved to Calgary. I remember imagining the memoir I would write called "Home for Now." That's how it felt for me then and that's how I'll have to feel now. Provo's home for now, but it'll change again.

I'm just here to say that I miss home and GO FLAMES GO.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Clearing the Cobwebs

Blog, it's good to see you. It feels so cozy to be writing in a place of my own. I've started my major classes (as in classes for my major) and a writing internship so to write something for myself feels like a treat.

1. Happy Friday the 13th
2. Happy Galentine's Day
3. Happy Have a Sick Day

On Tuesday this week, I was not sure how I was going to have a break. Everything piled on at once, and I felt like I'd never dig myself out of it. I'm here to remind myself that it gets easier to breathe sooner than you thought. Since I was so stressed, I got myself a springtime weather cold and a day off. I try to figure out why I get so down in the dumps so quickly. Is it hormones? Probably. Chemical imbalance? Most likely. I'd say one of the overlooked difficulties of mental illness is the lack of differentiation. Can I blame my mind for my sudden sense of despair that lingers in the air for awhile? How am I to know?

It's been almost five years since I first felt the effects of bipolar disorder. It's been almost three years since I was hospitalized(!!) It feels like yesterday, all of it. That's what makes it more difficult to forget and move on. Since a part of me is capable of who knows what, I feel like there are aspects of my mind that I'll never truly accept. Who wants to speak up when your professor calls something bipolar? Who wants to be the one to say, "That person is not bipolar, they have bipolar."

Here's a scenario for you. Say I were to have come down with a rare form of athlete's foot, (I'm staying away from the cliche cancer or broken limb examples.) Say it's permanent and there's no cure. (I honestly know nothing about athlete's foot.) I would hope that I could eventually accept it as the new normal. I'd take care of it, and that'd be that. When people ask what's up with my feet, I'd say permanent athletes foot and yes it's sad that I can't wear fun sandals and yes it sucks. I'd expect some sympathy and some shying away from my feet but hopefully people would look past that and just see me.

Now with an illness, such as bipolar disorder, that is also permanent and I did not ask for, it's tricky to separate it from yourself. Since your mind is essentially who you are and it has a major blip or glitch, was that the true me? Sure you can say, "That wasn't really you." or "You were unrecognizable" or "that was just the illness talking." but if I internalize those thoughts, it does not go well. For me, my actions whether during an episode or as the "regular me" were decisions that I knowingly made. I was acting in my best interests. I was under a supreme amount of stress that I was trying to do anything to escape from. But when I come out of it and everyone in my life is traumatized, I turn against myself. During a manic episode, I feel confident and free and capable. I feel hopelessly optimistic and dedicated to getting everyone on my same wavelength. When the consequences of these actions caused by my own brain (whether imbalanced or not, it's still my same brain) led me far away from where I thought I was headed in mania land. I became extremely, even paralyzingly embarrassed. I did anything to avoid the songs, outfits, and people that I was once so drawn to. I became my own enemy to save what was left of my pride.

Now that I've been somewhat stable for two years, how do I handle the small up and downs? I find it hard to explain how it feels to know what my mind is capable of, and mortified of repeating the same mistakes. My mind's conflicted. I feel optimistic about my future and ready for major life changes, but I'm terrified to shift my situation in case it sets me off into a manic spiral. I applied last minute to an internship program in Washington D.C. this fall. I feel ready for an adventure, but I'm worried that I can't measure up. I'm consumed with "what ifs" that I feel like quitting everything and living some kind of simpler life. I am proud of how I've been maturing and furthering myself in my life and career. But I can't help but wonder about what could happen down the road. It can be hard to trust myself when I'm not exactly sure if I'll always be stable.

I wish that everything I want to talk about could be light and fresh and easy to digest, but that would only get me so far. By staying silent on how I'm truly feeling, I'm pushing the fears away that are sure to come back again.  What I'm getting down to is that I'm trying to figure out exactly how mental illness is affecting me in my life today. The first step is to simply talk about it. If you're reading this, thank you. Breaking down stigma starts with empathy, which is something that I try to practice with myself. I only hope that I can one day hold my head high and be proud of everything I've done, mania and all.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

On Creativity

I was given an assignment this weekend for my visual literacy class to read this article on creativity. It is from A Sudden Clash of Thunder by Osho, Talk #4. The words resounded with me so I thought I'd share a few quotes from it here. If you'd like to read the whole piece, you can find it here.

Exerpts from "What is Creativity?"

"So if you are looking for fame and then you think you are creative – if you become famous like Picasso, then you are creative - then you will miss. Then you are, in fact, not creative at all: you are a politician, ambitious. If fame happens, good. If it doesn't happen, good. It should not be the consideration. The consideration should be that you are enjoying whatsoever you are doing. It is your love-affair."

"A creative act enhances the beauty of the world; it gives something to the world, it never takes anything from it. A creative person comes into the world, enhances the beauty of the world – a song here, a painting there. He makes the world dance better, enjoy better, love better, meditate better. When he leaves this world, he leaves a better world behind him. Nobody may know him; somebody may know him – that is not the point. But he leaves the world a better world, tremendously fulfilled because his life has been of some intrinsic value."

"But it is possible that outwardly you may not be famous, you may not have money, you may not succeed in the so-called world. But to succeed in this so-called world is to fail deeply, is to fail in the inside world. And what are you going to do with the whole world at your feet if you have lost your own self? What will you do if you possess the whole world and you don't possess yourself?"

"If God were to give a chart of your life to you when you were entering into the world – this will be your life: you are going to become a guitarist – then your life would be mechanical. Only a machine can be predicted, not a man. Man is unpredictable. Man is always an opening, a potentiality for a thousand and one things. Many doors open and many alternatives are always present at each step – and you have to choose, you have to feel. But if you love your life you will be able to find." 

"So if you are seeking something else in the name of creativity, then drop the idea of being creative. At least consciously, deliberately, do whatsoever you want to do. Never hide behind masks. If you really want to be creative, then there is no question of money, success, prestige, respectability. Then you enjoy your activity; then each act has an intrinsic value. You dance because you like dancing; you dance because you delight in it. If somebody appreciates, good, you feel grateful. If nobody appreciates, it is none of your business to be worried about it. You danced, you enjoyed – you are already fulfilled."

"Never think with wrong beliefs, and never be attached to wrong beliefs, that you are uncreative. Maybe your father said to you that you are uncreative, your colleagues said to you that you are uncreative. Maybe you were searching in wrong directions, in directions in which you are not creative, but there must be a direction in which you are creative."
"Each man comes into this world with a specific destiny: he has something to fulfill, some message has to be delivered, some work has to be completed. You are not here accidentally, you are here meaningfully. There is a purpose behind you. The whole intends to do something through you."

Friday, January 2, 2015

End of Semester

12 posts was a lofty goal for a month full of finals and family events. I figure if I'm ever going to blog I'll have to make the photo posts shorter and sweeter.

1. Festival of Trees

2. Decorated our apartment a la IKEA Christmas style.

(lots of puzzles too)
 3. Christmas Concert/ Devotional performance

Yes I am including a snapchat of me sent to me via bf as in best friend and I am not ashamed to do so.
Other bf got to come to the concert and endure an hour and a half of strangers singing!

Other activities included hot chocolate centered events, finishing finals, watching the MoTab concert with a true love Santino Fontana, starting winter break and going to the Kurt Bestor Christmas concert with my momma and aunt. The holiday season went by quickly as usual but I loved it all the same. No one is ready for January, but I'm going to do the best I can to love it. Merry late Christmas and happy 2015!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

A Canadian Thanksgiving

Well it's December, and I have the blogging bug. Youtubers have vlogmas where they vlog everyday, so I guess I can have blogmas. I will not blog everyday, but hopefully 12 times this month. Today I bring you my Thanksgiving holiday to the place that was not currently celebrating Thanksgiving.

I usually stay at school for the break but this year we are having Christmas here in Utah so I got to go home. I spent the week at my home mostly, but got to go Black Friday shopping, out to eat, and to four appointments. I had car problems two days in a row, and did I mention the temperature got to at least -20F? Remember how I had six full winters like that? How did I survive? Well I got to spend time decorating for Christmas and cozying up watching Christmas movies. I love being home and I miss my big bed, my puppy, and my family already. (I also love the Vitamix, wish u were closer 2 me.)

Just look at it. Thank you Canada-UK ties for carrying the full line.
Thanksgiving dinner! I roasted some more veggies while I was at it.
Hands On Hip Will Give You Lip
Ah hah, leftovers!

 I loved decorating the tree and finding places to display my mom's nativities from around the world.

Fine, I see it, we look alike.

How many dad things can you spy?
1. Leg lamp he made. 2. blankie 3. recliner 4. Dad. 5. 1 of four remotes 6. Jack
At lastly, the pretty flowers my momma put in my room before I arrived. I loved them so!

Happy December!

Sunday, November 2, 2014


I came up with my Halloween costume on Tuesday night, just a few days from Halloween. I've gone through about 10 different costume ideas but since I had no concrete party plans I never followed them through. I still didn't have any plans, but I got so excited about it didn't matter. I've been watching Gilmore Girls this month since it came out on Netflix. I realized dressing up as Rory in her Chilton uniform would be perfect.

Step one was finding the skirt. I looked at nearly every clothing website I could think of. I finally found the perfect one at Lands End and quickly ordered it with rush shipping. I got the supplies to make saddle shoes based off of this tutorial and also made the necktie out of navy ribbon and a button. I had the shirt and blazer so with some knee high socks from Target and straightened hair, I channeled my inner Rory.

Happy Halloween! (It was 72 degrees on Friday and now it's 32 and I'm wearing a coat indoors and I'm not ready for this. )
Welcome November!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

It's the best month of the year everyone!

 It's October. It's time for the glorious decaying leaf smell, a chilly breeze, sporty casual wear, comfy sweaters, basic girl heaven, and also the birthday month of this opal stone libra. I'm so excited about October, and having Gilmore Girls be unleashed on Netflix today is the icing on the pumpkin spice cake. (Speaking of Gilmore Girls, I just so happened to be inspired to start a GG themed tumblr. It's not customary to reveal your tumblr identity I've been told but oh well.)

Happy October!