Sunday, January 17, 2010

Short Comings

I'm short. Not midget short, but definitely below average. I didn't know I was short until I was in first grade. Peter Brionez told me. During 1st recess he told me that I was so short I looked like a tater tot. I didn't have a come back. I just went back into class when the bell rang and then went home and cried. Now it doesn't seem that terrible. I mean tater tots are awesome and thanks to Napolean Dynomite they have become a pop culture staple.

I wonder how long it would have taken me to figure out that I was short if Peter Brionez hadn't told me.

There are some things about being short that are nice that you might not be aware of (especially you tall people):

1. Low center of gravity, I rarely fall.
2. I've never been too tall for a guy
3. I don't hit my head on things
4. Never have to worry about high waters (well, I guess I have to worry about actual high bodies of water, but not the fashion don't)
5. I'm awesome at hide and go seek
6. I always have enough leg room. period.
7. I've never scared a child.

However, with all of these advantages, there are some drawbacks:

1. People pet you a lot
2. they also pick you up. Not cool.
3. there's the obvious inability to reach things on the top shelf, that sucks.
4. I'll never be "discovered" as the new face/body of Chanel
5. I think it contributes to people not taking me seriously.
6. No matter how old I get I'll look like a kid.

Whatever the pluses and minuses are, I am, and there's no fighting it. I couldn't look at Peter Brionez and tell him, "no I'm not," or "so are you," because what he said was true. Harsh, strange, immature, but true. I wish it was as easy to admit short comings about myself that aren't so obvious. When I'm faced with criticism I usually have a come back. Why do I fight even what I know deep down to be true? Why would I rather pretend to be taller than I really am? Especially when I'm not fooling anyone. Why do we fool ourselves into believing we are a bigger deal than we actually are? Why do I care so much about covering up those short comings? Do I really believe I am fooling anyone else? Do I really believe that if I argue hard enough, and hide long enough, that the world around me will think I'm good and perfect?

I think I do. On some sick level, if the people around me think I'm good, a nice person, fun, sweet, friendly, insert whatever you wish to be here, then it must be true. Why don't we want to believe about ourselves what we already know to be true on some level? Probably cause it sucks. Probably because it's a lot easier to think we're doing better than we actually are. That's why I'm thankful for the Peter Brionez's in my life. People who can be honest with me about my shortcomings. I just hope I can grow to acknowledge them, accept them, and work on changing them.

My dear reader there are areas in your life where you are a "tater tot." I can only hope you have a more tactful Peter Brionez in your life to let you know.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Faces of Stone

Have you ever really looked at old people? Like a lot of them? I grew up in Armenian church, so I became an expert in interpreting old people. The human form and it's aging is fascinating to me. Recently, I've become more in touch with the idea of my own mortality. We get old. At 25, my body is starting to change and each day I look more and more like my mother, which isn't a bad thing at all, but it is different. While I know, I hope, I have a long way to go, it's made me think about how people choose to cope with the process of aging.
Angry old man by Souljacker.
As a young girl, I studied the faces and personalities of the old people around me. Partly out of fear and the rest out of a morbid curiosity. I mean, they were EVERYWHERE. Some old people are really scary. They hate kids and their faces all look like that guy on the bitter beer face commercials.
Then there are some who make you feel warm and safe just looking into their eyes. There is a peace and comfort in some and with others a bitterness and sharpness. As I studied, I developed a theory. I came to realize that as we age the soul of a person gets closer to the surface. You can read it in the lines of their face. Those who age gracefully and those who don't. There are those with laugh lines, and others that seem to have faces of stone and as life has caused their souls to grow bitter and their hearts cold, their outside seems to more and more reflect their insides. Youth is beautiful because it's full of potential and is unmarred by the sometimes unfair, sometimes wonderful, sometimes beautiful world we live in. I've realized the older we get, the harder it is to hide behind your youth. We are forced to take responsibility for ourselves. For who we are becoming and what we have become. Youth and ignorance are a perfect excuse, but it only works for so long. At some point we have to take an active roll in who we are becoming, or we'll blink and life will have passed, and we won't be ready to face the reality in the mirror.

C.S. Lewis said, "You don't have a soul, you are a soul, you have a body." I couldn't say it better if I tried. The essence of who you are is so pure, but that's not all there is to the story. There is a myth out there. A myth that you have to just "discover" who you are. In the movie "Hitch" there is this line that I love. Hitch is telling a dweeby guy that he needs a new pair of shoes. The guy says the shoes aren't really "him." Hitch says, "You is a very fluid concept right now." Who you are is a fluid concept, it is not set in stone. As life happens it must be not only discovered, but developed. Each day, each decision I make, I shape the image of who I am (aka my soul), the life I will lead and ultimately what image my soul will have as it begins to peek through the shell it's incased in.

(and yes I WILL be wearing this when I'm 90)

I hope to be the kind of woman who's eyes tell a story of grace, of love, of peace, and of acceptance of who I am and who I'm not. I hope to age gracefully with Christ. To have my soul become more like Him, so children won't be afraid of me and so I won't resent who I become. I hope to maintain a sense of humor, to continue to take myself less seriously and choose to care about things that matter and get over things that don't. It's going to take work. It's going to take faith and it's going to take time, if I'm lucky, it'll take a life time, but it's something I'm going to start today. I'm going to start by evaluating myself honestly. By asking others to. By recognizing and accepting and changing what I need to. I'm going to start by spending more time with Christ.

What are you doing to develop your soul?

Monday, January 4, 2010

My Holiday Theory of Hope

Hey Blog friends.

It's been awhile. Hope the holidays have been treating you well. I had a unique experience this holiday season that I wanted to share with you.

I've been pretty "mum" on the subject of my guy and that's intentional for a couple reasons. It's also the reason that it's been a little quiet on the blog front for awhile. A lot of what I'm currently learning centers around him and us. It's just the nature of this dating beast and I'm either way too respectful of him or way to selfish to share that just yet. However, I will share this with you.

Leading up to Christmas we often said to each other, "It just doesn't feel like Christmas."

I heard many of my friends of a similar age and season of life saying the same things and I started to wonder, why are we all not "feeling" Christmas this year?

Christmas for me, is usually a mix of sentimentality, reflection, family, and a sense of wishing and even missing the past. Missing the Christmas's and special times with family. The fuzzy memories of precious time wrapped in magic and wonder and probably lacking even a splash of reality. The same components are still there. My family, the sights, sounds, tastes, and excitement, but nothing is quite like the hope for and anticipation of Christmas as a child. Teenage Christmas's just weren't childhood Christmas's filled with wonder, excitement and magic. Teenage Christmas's were melancholy looks at what Christmas had been, at least for me. So, the ones after that were really less about experiencing this holiday and more about reflecting on the ones I'd had.

But something changed this year. This year I wanted to be in the "present" and I'm not talking about gifts. Was it because of the "him" in my life? Maybe, that was probably at least part of it. Was it because I'm finally letting go of some past seasons that were painful? That may be part of it too. I think I finally accepted this year that the best moments of my life haven't happened yet. Each Christmas will be different like each year. Each will have it's ups and downs and hopefully each will have it's lessons learned. That's the beauty of this ride.

All I know is there is something beautiful and hopeful about being able to live in and appreciate the moment we're in. I love sentimentality, history and looking back, but this holiday served as a good reminder for me, that for as much as we look back we also have to keep up, to move forward, to move on in some cases, and to pursue what we're in. To embrace and enjoy where we are at.

This year will not be what was.

Depending on the year you had that statement can carry a lot of different emotions. For my friend who got married this year, that statement was a little sad. It's no longer their first year. Though that's exciting, it's a little bittersweet. For those who 2009 held immense pain and challenges, 2010 will not be what was. It will be what it will be. Instead of attempting to hold onto the past and failing, or fumbling at trying to figure out the future. Do today. Each day this year.

My resolution. To experience this year fully. To learn a lot. To live(fully) a whole year.