Tag Archives: life lessons

A new beginning.

Two weeks after the beginning of a new year, and everything is already very different… and yet completely the same. I’m sitting in the bedroom, watching mosquitoes hover in front of my cat-eye frames, and blaming myself for not remembering to close the window screen after Riley opened it to make sure I heard him yell, “Mama! Mama! Mamaaaaa!!”

That was his greeting when I got home from school. 

I’d come home early because of a headache and my body’s need to relax, and there he was, happy to see me, positively radiant and beaming in his I-LOVE-my-mommy!-ness. Micah was in the bath, and when he saw me, he lit up like a firecracker and I swore I saw heaven. 

And then I remembered that Rob’s mom had passed away from lung cancer and that she’d never see my babies’ smiles, and I wanted to smoke and eat and shop and act out every other vice I have. 

It’s been a hard year so far.

I miss Rob’s mom. There are money issues plaguing me. My extended family is showing itself to be more and more bat-shit crazy. Rob and I are having a hard time being Rob and I. And in the midst of all this, I’m tentatively putting one foot in front of the other, making my way towards something better than what I’ve got, and mindful that everything could blow up in my face at any moment.


Things I’ve always known but didn’t quite believe until now.

  1. You need people in your life who will let you be the worst version of yourself, who will call you on your bullshit, and who will remain by your side despite the fact that you are flawed.
  2. Cherish those people. Let them see all the sides of you.
  3. Never be scared to be yourself.
  4. Procrastination will kill your dreams, and in so doing, it will kill you, too. Don’t give in to it.
  5. Be kind.
  6. Do what you know to be right. Not because anyone told you to do it, or because you’re afraid of someone’s/something’s wrath, but because you know it to be right.
  7. Realize that there are things in this world that can never really be known or understood, but try to know them and understand them anyway.
  8. Read everything you can get your hands on.
  9. Express yourself. Do not tie your tongue or your hands or your feet. Do not bind yourself in repression. Speak. Write. Paint. Dance. You are art.
  10. Never stop striving towards your goals.
  11. Find people who care about you and challenge you and force you to be better. Make these people into family.
  12. Always ask questions.
  13. Don’t lose touch with people who are important; do lose touch with people who don’t think you’re important.
  14. Trust your gut, even – no, especially – when it’s telling you something you don’t want to hear.
  15. Cooking and cleaning aren’t the jobs of subordinates; they are the jobs of the hard-working and proud. Learn to fix healthy and delicious meals for yourself and to take pride in cleanliness and appearance.
  16. Expand your horizons.
  17. Celebrate your victories, but remember that there is still a war to fight.
  18. Choose your battles carefully. Refuse to fight the same opponents over and over again; if they won’t budge, the won’t budge, and you don’t need to waste your time.
  19. Learn the importance of money. You don’t need it to survive or be happy, but having it sure does help.
  20. Love always finds a way.