It’s Friday, Friday

Happy Friday!!!!!

Let’s go into the weekend with a positive outlook, and a mind to recoup!  These are the days I am so thankful I am no longer working a part time job.  It is heaven to have the weekends to live my life, and do my own thing!

As an update, I know I have not posted three posts this week, and only posted two last week! I have not yet met my goal.  I was under the weather this week, and absolutely exhausted.  However, I do have posts in the works!

I will talk with you guys soon, and in the meantime, everyone enjoy your weekend!  Whether you are working or not, find some time for yourself tonight, tomorrow, or Sunday.  Personal time is underrated.  We all need it!

Shannon

Lessons, Not Regrets

 

We talk about regret, and wanting to take back the things we did wrong.  But I believe regretting the things you do can lead to a cycle of self-destruction.

I always regretted not sticking to ballet when I was little.  I quit track in high school after three weeks.  I was never on any sort of sport team, and did not participate much in clubs.  I mainly wanted to be with myself in high school, so I went home, and did just that.  I read Harry Potter, watched some television, relaxed on my bed.  I cried and I grieved.

I have lost friends, for unknown reasons.  Sometimes people slip away, and no matter what you do, it can only be their decision to come back.  I have been hurt by men.  Many have left, many have been abusive.  The dating scene in college was not exactly romance and Hershey kisses.

But regretting my decisions, and how I handled situations at the time will lead me nowhere.  At this rate, I would be regretting most of the past ten years of my life.  And what is the point of that?  Because regretting the past ten years of my life will only lead to self-hate.

Those experiences I had have shaped me.  They have made me insecure.  They have made me scared.  But they have also produced the strength in me to live a life I want.  Instead of regretting, I decided I must learn.

What would have made me happier in high school?  Running.  The Gym.

So now?  I go to the gym.  I run.  I lift weights.  I work out.  I stretch.

What would have made me happier in college?

The same.  But also, making my decisions based on learning from my past, instead of regretting my past.  Because my regrets made me hate myself.  And hating myself led me into a path of self-destruction that is by no means easy to get away from.

I cannot hate my past.  Hating my past will make me hate who I am.  I know this, because I have experienced the cycle first hand, over, and over, and over again.

In college, I would have been happier if I had been more open.

Now, I am more open.  To experiences, people, and love.  To ideas, even the ones that do not sit right with me.

In college, I would have been happier if I stopped fighting, and started living.

So, now I am living.  I will not keep trying to beat the past.  Today, tomorrow, this very moment, is about creation.  It is about who I am now, and how to continue becoming a better version of myself.

Everything in life is a learning experience.  To learn from our lives, is there any room for regret?

Shannon

 

Be a Friend

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We have all walked by an individual in need of a loving hand.  Who has not ignored someone we disliked when she was upset, because of our own private prejudices against her?

Let us challenge ourselves to be better, and to be a friend to anyone in need.  I am talking about anyone with different ideologies than you.  Anyone who has made fun of you to your face.  Anyone you thought was a close friend, and ended up further away than you ever expected.

We do not have to invite each other over for wine or pizza nights.  They do not need to be in our weddings, and we do not need to share our personal information with them.  But if someone looks like she is in need, it is up to us to rise above ourselves.

Living is living with people. That is not going to change.  So, let us try to make living a little more joyful, by giving a hand to someone in need.

It is as simple as giving an apple to a homeless person on the corner.  As simple as helping someone with a piece of equipment at the gym.  Saying hello to your new coworker, and introducing yourself.

If you think someone could use a friend, be one.  Choose to be kind.

Shannon

Realities of 23

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The turtle knows.

The reality of life at 23 is not as glamorous as I had expected it to be.  I remember promising myself that I would never move back home after college, that I would find a job wherever I went, that I could work two or three jobs if needed.  I remember thinking I would have a pet and bring it on road trips with my girl friends.  When I was young, meaning in middle school (yes, yes, I know I’m young guys), I fantasized about living in Ireland in a small cottage by the Shannon River.  I would work at a local bookstore, and make money on the side writing stories and articles.  Perhaps I would be a historian, and write about the cultures of the world around us.

The reality is, I live at home.  I do not have a pet of my own (although Sophie, our family chocolate lab, is quite the cutie).  I do not have money for road trips, for eye surgery (20/20 vision anyone?? so sick of contacts), and barely have enough money to pay my student loans, put gas in my tank, and feed myself.

The reality is, being in your 20’s is kind of brutal.  What would I do differently if I knew what I know today?

Well, I would probably take a year or two away from school, to get a real world perspective on things.  Maybe then I would not have changed my major four times, and transferred colleges.

I would have been way more true to myself in college, and stood my ground instead of succumbing to peer pressure.

I would have been involved with more of what I’m passionate about.

I guess being true to myself, and finding out what my values are early on, is what, ideally, would have happened.

But let’s face it.  Do I even know these things now?

I’m still as lost as ever.  Although, maybe I’m not actually lost.  I feel far from independence, and the dreams I had as a child.  But everyday I get out of bed and go to the job I chose to commit to.  Every single day I am sticking to commitments I truly care about.

I told my students just yesterday, that keeping a blog can help me with my writing, with my professional life, and feeling fulfilled!  I told them, three posts a week could really help me.  Lately, I feel like my posts are not even well written.  I am sincerely sorry for that.

Today, I have decided: I am making a new commitment.

So:

  1. Service Position
  2. Gym
  3. Blog -> 3 posts a week.

I would say that is a pretty good start to beginning a fulfilling and healthy life style after years of depression and anxiety. I learned from a counselor in Fredonia, that pushing yourself too hard too fast can actually put you on a quick path back to destruction.  So, I’m taking it slow.

And, also, guys,  I’m only 23!

Like, Woah.  Time, much?

Peace.

Shannon

 

 

Women’s March on Washington

It is difficult to write about the March on Washington.  That day was powerful, beautiful, incredible, and I was able to be a part of it.  It is a day I will never forget, a day where I took a stand with millions of others by my side.  The world erupted with men and women screaming to protect the rights of individuals, screaming for President Trump to listen to the people, for all of society to understand: We will not go back.

I was quiet for most of the march, in my own thoughts, witnessing something I knew was historic.  Every now and then I would come out of the surreal, and shout with the others.  I was just as surprised as any other to see Madonna take the stage, and hear her perform.  That day so many were brought together because of our beliefs in human rights and dignity for all.

Unfortunately, since the Women’s March, Donald Trump has been signing executive orders that are entirely against what we stood for.  We had our day of protest, but the protest cannot stop.  We have to keep signing petitions, uniting, and acting out on our right to free speech.

I want to talk about losing my car, and walking for miles before finally calling Uber.  I want to talk about the horrible air bnb we stayed in with cockroaches and hair every where, and driving back that night instead of staying.  I want to talk about those things, but to be honest, I’m not in the mood.

We need to stay organized.  We need to fight against travel bans. We need to keep speaking out against the construction of harmful pipelines.  We need to keep screaming against the wall.  We need to remind everyone that women’s rights are human rights, that black lives matter, that LGBTQ are people who love and feel as much as we do.

The Women’s March on Washington was historic.  It was a proud moment, one to never be forgotten.  The protest must continue, long after the March.

I must apologize for this post being delayed.  I must apologize for it not being as detail oriented as I wanted it to be.  All I can say is, we must find our local organizations, volunteer, educate, protest, and keep going.

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Remember Me

I know it’s not easy to see me.  Sometimes it’s not easy to see myself.  I can stand in front of the mirror for hours, and still not recognize the girl on the outside.

It’s easy to forget that others forget.  I wish it weren’t like that.  With depression and anxiety, I often get left behind.  I’m not fit to be a server, so I’m put at the hostess stand, making barely enough money to cover student loans.  I’m not fit to live alone, because I might get lonely.  I’m not fit to blog honestly, because it may impact my future job search.  Because no one wants to hear the truth.  No one wants to remember me.

Everyone wants to forget.  But why?  What does my depression and anxiety have to do with my ability to work?  Why does everything have to be cold, and unacknowledged?

I spent five days in the hospital for a condition I’ve had since high school.  That’s nine years of putting my mental illness at the wayside for everyone else.  “What’s wrong with you?” she would say.  “Why can’t you just be normal?”

So I suppress it.  I begin to think I don’t fit in this world.  I begin to believe it.  I begin to act on it.

I forget to remember me, just like all of you.

I fade away.

 

Trying to remember how to smile at the beginning of my suicidal stage.