head wrap.

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your mother left you at a random hospital in America when you were four years old. twenty years later, you’re on a flight from New York to San Francisco and you end up seated next to a stranger that looks vaguely like someone you remember…write the scene. 

You look pretty decent when you run a brush through your hair,” my boyfriend Fletcher says. I roll my eyes at him as I attempted a fancy head-wrap with a summer scarf I’d seen on Pinterest. “Pretty decent, gee thanks,” I reply with a big smile, “you’re going to miss ‘pretty decent’ for the next week.” “Yeah, you’re right,” he says, undoing the scarf I’d just spent twenty minutes wrapping around my head. “I don’t feel like missing you just yet…” – the next thing I know, we are both unwrapped from our clothes and completely wrapped up in each other.

Fast-forward an hour and we are mad-dashing out the door – sans head wrap, damn it you sexy man! – to catch a taxi so we can hop on a train that will eventually get me to a plane where I will be taken to San Fran to see my mom for the first time in a year. My mother and I we – well, we’re something. We have such an interesti- we used to be  extremely close, then something happened – some sort of disconnect that I don’t understand – so naturally I am thrilled to be visiting for an entire week. Who knows what will happen? I’m hopeful for re-connection, or to at very least address what happened to begin with. None of it makes any sense and I want to hear it from her. I’m extremely hopeful that this visit will go well, and I swear I’m starting the trip with nothing but positive vibes – swear it.

I knew I was going to be late for my flight, just knew I was going to miss it and have to call my mom with the disappointing news that my trip would be cut short by a day, but to my surprise, the flight was delayed by an hour for maintenance and made it just in time. I was really treating myself for this trip. I’d booked my first first-class seat on a flight that made me feel more luxurious than Gwen Stefani. I had someone to help me put my non-Louis Vuitton bag in the overhead storage. I’d thankfully remember to swipe my copy of Dune to keep me occupied on the flight. Fletcher gave it to me to read months ago and though I was unsure at first, it really is the best sci-fi novel I’ve ever read. Ever.

I was relieved that no one was sitting next to me, even though the plane appeared to be full. I loved this, things were really starting to feel like vacation. I put my ear-buds in and opened to the marked page where I’d left off. “It was a dangerous universe where such ideas were allowed to float around freely.” I was repeating this line, over and over in my head when a gorgeous brunette woman briskly stepped on to the plane, making the most subtle of grand entrances, the way a talented but not overly proud artist introduces his work. She was tall-ish, in an awkward way, but still managing to control the attention of the entire first class and all of the flight attendants, who were immediately helping lift her bags, fawning over her like she owned the damn plane. I couldn’t take my eyes off her, she was the most fabulous person I’d ever seen. “Mrs. Grigsby, it’s so nice to see you again, what a lovely bag, is it new?” Okay…maybe she did own the damn plane.

It was wild. I immediately stood and grabbed my purse from the overhead compartment, dashing in to the bathroom to check my face and re-attempt the Pinterest head-wrap thingy. I felt instantly pressured for this woman’s approval as I knew the seat she would be taking would be the one next to mine. I wanted her to look at my brunette beach waves and think to herself how perfect they look with my effortlessly chic head-wrap and purposefully non-matching maxi dress – looking effortless is a lot of work people. don’t be fooled. I gave myself a once-over at least three times before deciding that I felt okay enough to sit back down. A little fact about me: I have no shame in admitting I need a stamp of approval, even from strangers. I have no idea why I feel like it’s important, but I don’t feel okay about my day if I don’t catch the barista at Starbucks silently wishing she was wearing my shoes.

I made my way out of the bathroom and back to my row, storing my purse back in the overhead where it belonged, a stewardess practically pushing me in to my seat as the Captain had already called for everyone to take their seats before departure. I slipped in to my seat and fastened my seat-belt, noticing I was breathing heavy. I tried to slow this as I slightly opened the window – I like to look out the window when we take off, it’s the best part. I reached for my book, but it was gone. I went in to a slight panic, then out of the corner of my eye, I saw in perfectly manicured hands, my copy of Dune. I turned slowly to face the woman sitting next to me and I felt as though someone had punched me in the throat, in the gut and had kicked me in both knee caps simultaneously. I more than recognized this woman’s face. At the same moment that the proverbial wind was kicked out of me, Mrs. Manicure spilled her glass of Chardonnay and dropped my book, drowning it, her eyes never leaving mine. Our moment of recognition was equivalent.

“Ariadne.”

“Mother.”

Twenty years of no memories at all could ever wipe that woman’s eyes from my memory. I haven’t seen my mother in twenty years. I was on a plane to see my mom for the first time in a year and I end up sitting next to my mother. I tried as hard as I could, but couldn’t for the life of me fathom wrapping my head around the probability.

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I will no doubt revisit this story, as it is way too much of a cluster not to enjoy. Any feedback thus far is greatly appreciated. Who knows where I’ll take it!

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what would happen…

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what would happen if I asked all of the questions you’re not supposed to ask, right here, right now? –

what would happen if we just asked for what we wanted? I was talking to my roomie a few nights ago, sort of girl-ing out on how to say something to someone, and he just looks and me and says, “why are we so afraid to ask for what we want?” Jared’s right; what’s the big deal? people ask (perhaps demand is a better word) all kinds of crazy shit from us all the time. why are we so unwilling to step up and really ask for what we want? I know it’s going to sound crazy….but it’s the only way we’re going to get anywhere.

what would happen if we showed nothing but love to our bodies, inside and out?

what would happen if my neighbor upstairs dropped a bowling bowl through the floor? i only ask because that’s what I fear at 630 every morning when something bangs against the floor/wall a few times, abruptly, “coaxing,” me in to awake.

what would happen if we stood our ground, unwavering in our decisions? i feel like we are so easily and heavily influenced by the on-goings around us. i know that it’s hard to keep focus sometimes, but what would happen if we just took a deep breath and remembered what we wanted?

what would happen if you showed love to someone without knowing the reaction/outcome? are we really supposed to sit silent, suppressing what we feel because we aren’t sure if we’re being appropriate? I’m over that.

what would happen if every woman everywhere shaved their heads and stopped wearing makeup?

what would happen if we all spoke freely about our experiences, good or bad, pretty or ugly, without hesitation or shame? you know, tried that whole honesty bit?

what if people spoke to us knowing their words were free from judgement?

what would happen if we closed our eyes for a few moments each day and remember that we’re lucky to have our breath? to remember that we may not be free from conflict or hardships or struggle but that we’re above ground and so beyond blessed by this day – what would happen then?

what would happen if we gave the same amount of respect we feel we deserve? better – what would happen if we gave respect without expectation? I’m really tired of operating like I’m earning something. If we love and respect others without expectation, we may save the world.

I ask myself all kinds of questions all the time, and fill many of my days looking for the answer. I find solace in the idea that there may be no answer; that the entire point is the journey life takes you on while you search. feel free to leave your questions below. i’d like some new stuff to mull over.

seriously, shut up.

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WARNING: this post will be extremely whiny and rant-y but I have to get it all down before I pop.

I can’t seem to turn my brain off this week. I’m honest to God irritating myself at this point because I can’t shut my thoughts down long enough to breathe. I am obviously an over-thinker, this is a fact that I can’t escape; but shit. This is getting out of hand for me this week. I’d really reached the loveliest, serene place…then WHAMMO! Insecurities showed up and they weren’t invited.

In the past week, I’ve spent time constantly making lists for work stuff and things I need for my new place. “Do the board members want pretzels with their grapes for the meeting? Should I get cheese? I like that lamp, but is it going to work next to my laundry basket? Maybe I should get a new laundry basket.” I’ve made grocery lists, double checking all the way to make sure it’s following Paleo guidelines as closely as possible – let’s be honest here, there is no way in hell I’m giving up peanut butter or cheese. I’ve made pros and cons lists for all kinds of crap: that song, those jeans, that guy. “Should I do Paleo? Well, when should I send that text? How should I respond to that? Is that appropriate?” I mean seriously…my thoughts will not stop. I really want to tell my subconscious to just shut the hell up.

I’ve worked on The Anchor then flipped over to working on The Bridge, desperately trying to ensure that the sequel will be equally as satisfying as the first. So, this of course means more lists. Lists of the who-what-where-when-why of Walter and Bridget’s romance. Lists of poignant things they each said to each other, or specific thoughts they had. At one point, when my eyes crossed and I realized I had to be at work in four hours I swear I banged my head against my head-board and bellowed, “SERIOUSLY, SHUT UP!” in my best Emma Thompson.

I had a semi-panicky moment this morning because I was unsure of where I left my guitar. MY FREAKING GUITAR, you know that large instrument you hold and make beautiful sounds with? I couldn’t even remember what I’d done with it. I’m quite sure I thoroughly pissed Brittany off this morning when I sent a text at 7 a.m. sharp asking her if I’d left it where we practice. – which, side note: I was frustrated with everything I played last night. Nothing sounded good to me, nothing felt right. I was unhappy at rehearsal for the first time in forever. WHAT IS HAPPENING TO MY BRAIN?! Who am I?! 

I’ve recently cut down to two (okay, sometimes/mostly three) cups of coffee. I don’t make a pot at home because my roommate doesn’t drink it and I don’t see the point if no one is going to share it with me. Coffee should be shared, damn it! I haven’t had the shakes or anything, but I feel like something is missing chemically in my body. Caffeine addiction is real.

Thanks to the Noah-and-the-Ark sized flood of insecurities this week, I have been more introspective for the last twenty-four hours because I cannot handle feeling this way, and I think I’ve drawn a most honest conclusion. Perhaps, this is due to how busy my evenings have been this week – a problem I am not complaining about in the slightest, but I haven’t had time to get my evening yoga in and I swear it throws my balance off (no pun intended, this time.) I had a great vinyasa Monday morning, and half-assed practiced on Tuesday because I was flat beat. Jared (the roomie) asked to see my, “yoga stuff,” and I happily obliged, though I didn’t do anything but show him a few poses and talk to him about why I love it. I told him about how I love the practice so much because I discover different things about my mind and body every time I hit the mat. I like finding out which asanas are easier for the right side of my body versus the left, and vice versa. I like observing what happens where my thoughts tend to go when I’m trying balances over where my mind wanders when I’m in down-dog or in one of the Warrior poses. I know I was very gushy, in general, about how yoga (for me) isn’t only about challenging my body, it’s about healing my mind.

So maybe that’s it? Maybe the reason why my brain has been in full over-analyze mode is because my thoughts haven’t had any place to go? I didn’t realize the one-year anniversary of my daily (4-6 times a week) practice. I’ve been side-planking and Ujjayi breathing for a solid year now, and on occasion for years before that. It’s amazing what happens when that is subtracted from the day…I knew the practice has extreme effects on me but I had no idea how much. Just a few days without it and my brain (and body) are in complete over drive.

Hopefully when I’m on my mat this evening and my crazy lists and insecurities start blabbing, my calm inner yogini will politely, quietly breathe, “seriously, shut up.”

here’s a bunch of crap you need to know about being friends/dating an over-thinker. I’m already stressing out about whether or not you’ll read it. Maybe I’ll make another list of things to read while you’re stressed.

http://www.puckermob.com/relationships/12-things-you-need-to-know-before-dating-an-overthinker#close

electric feel

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every now and then, I get transported to a different place. Writing makes this easy, because I literally go to wherever it is I’m writing about in my mind; in The Anchor, that’s Beulah, South Carolina. There, I’m surrounded by big, fluffy green trees and wide open, beautiful fields for as far as the eye can see. While there, I can also hit the beach, grab a great cup of coffee from Tamp&Grind (which is amazingly no different from my everyday life – I love when that happens,) or hop on a jet-ski and zip around the beach while catching a great tan. I love that about writing, it’s one of my favorite feelings ever. If you ever read this blog, you know that I have similar feelings for yoga – I’m completely obsessed with how it makes me feel while I’m doing it and afterwards. I’m completely convinced that it’s healing powers are real. – I know, I’m very gushy and reflective about the things I love. I can’t help it; so let me have a moment to talk about how in love with my drums I am.

I play several instruments, but percussion is my favorite. There’s just something about being behind a great big drum set and going to town. It’s loud, it’s tangible. I can move around a little, really groove back there. I like slapping a bass around every now and then or playing something soothing on my acoustic, but duuuuuuuuude, drums are where it’s at for me. I’ve been dabbling with an electric kit lately, since that’s what was available (with reasonable volume,) but it’s just not the same. I have missed playing on my own set so bad. I have Zildjian titanium cymbals that are super bitey and  really, really loud…I love them. Nothing sounds quite like my own bass drum either, there’s just something about the way it kicks; nothing fits me like that set, it’s my set. I feel like it was made for me and I don’t think I appreciated that more until last night. A girl reunited with her own drum kit, now that’s a real love story. I was positively dripping with happiness.

While everyone else was glued to their televisions watching the Super Bowl, I was jamming with two exceptionally talented friends. Friends who are Pepsi people (gasp!), which hurts my soul, but friends nonetheless. Brittany has worked tirelessly lately on original stuff, which is beyond impressive and lovely (I can’t wait to share!) but we were kind of just playing around, having a good old-fashioned jam sess and ended up blasting Don’t Let Me Down by The Beatles for a good seven minutes. When I say that I’m pretty sure that my soul left my body and was flying around the pool-house, I’m not kidding.  We all got lost at one point and it was nothing shy of electric feel-good vibes. I was in heaven, seriously so blissed out. I STILL FEEL IT TODAY. It’s like the best sex I’ve ever had with free pizza and beer and a foot-rub from a babe-guy all rolled in to one, but better. I’ve been so smiley today and feeling so good on the inside. “Music makes you feel,” was the understatement of the night.

I won’t ever get over how much playing loud, live music feeds my soul. I don’t need an electric kit, just give me that electric feel.