Apartment 96

Apartment 96

Paper thin walls are both a novelty and a curse. I hear the way he begs for her attention with the opening of his patio door to the semi mediocre sunset views. And I wish a stranger good luck as he runs the bases of a game I quit playing a while ago.

She’s cute, you’ve got this 94.

The music. It’s terrible. And not because of the bass. Or the constant blatant disregard for the permeation of sound from his bedroom to my diary.

Alexa volume: 0, please god ZERO

Two people I’ve never met giggle at each other over dance breaks of a song most likely on the radio I’ve lost touch with, engulfed in a feeling I haven’t felt in a while.

I’m her. The single woman in Apt 96 who judges the noise because she forgot how to make her own.

I pick up a book.

A glass breaks.

A roar of laughter ensues.

I lay my head on my pillow.

A hum of pleasure they make.

Likely a product of booze.

A decade ago, I kept the dial turned. The music loud. The sunsets on my radar. And I swore to myself I’d never stop making memories even if the crotchety old lady in apartment 96 called the cops on me for the third time.

When did we become what we fought so hard to dodge? Unruly neighbors becoming reminders of an unfinished past.

I want to play.

I blinked and I’m here. Checking my clock for quiet hours. Trying to google common courtesy codes of conduct in an apartment 100% attached to a stranger. Ten years ago I was attached to strangers… without courtesy codes; without quiet hours.

The paper thin walls are a veil to my jealousy. Nobody would ever know unless I told them, and I have to tell you…

Kids these days don’t know what they have until it’s gone.

Sincerely,

Gone

Give It A Sexond

Give It A Sexond

What happens to the person who welcomes both happiness and pain without judgement? Do they fail themselves in not forming a preference for either or are they capable of bigger things for both knowing and accepting these extremes?

I know what it’s like to not give a single fuck and I also know what it’s like to give all the fucks you’ve ever gathered and hand them out like an unsupervised child. Being both is terrifying when someone expects you to pick a road and flip-on cruise control until you’ve reached their desired destination. [More specifically on paths you are ill-prepared to take.]

I can’t decide if I’m unlucky, misunderstood or just plain stupid. I’ll eliminate the latter because I know damn well that Mama didn’t raise no fool. Luck is a phenomenon that science can’t prove which means being misunderstood sticks out like the sorest of thumbs. A lot of things are easily misunderstood but I have to ask…when did no start meaning never? #giveitafuckingsexond

To the men who tell us to lower our expectations, we say the same to you:

Stop expecting us to give it up on your timeline. My body is not a suggestion. It doesn’t equal automatic opportunities and it will never be up for literal or non-literal grabs due to mere existence. It’s the shell of who I am; who I’ve worked so hard to be and it deserves the same respect across all circumstances.

They can say I’m broken. That I’m shut off. That I’m not laid back enough. They can, and they do. I hear it with every date I, with high hopes, show up for. I’m done being a victim of hypocrisy though. I’m just a tired empath longing for a real connection, knowing it doesn’t take being naked to achieve.

I hate that I even have to have these conversations. Or ask these questions. Or feel so worthless. Why is date number four always an awkward juggle of egos?

“If you liked me you’d sleep with me”. “Well, if you liked me you wouldn’t push it”.

The constant battle between what our hearts want, what our bodies need, and trying to play Switzerland with an irrational Germany. Blindly grabbing at what’s left of a connection when you realize they are only sticking around for one thing. Plot twist: it’s not your sense of security.

What happened to the men who’d wait a lifetime for your comfort? Who were willing to make sure there were no qualms before they undressed you. You can take pretty much anything from me without a blink of an eye, but do not take my worth. I refuse to allow for a moment anyone to believe that I am not capable of having all of it; that the only pieces of me that are sought after are the ones that fuel someone else’s ego.

I am not what you expect and in knowing that I’ve had to fight the feeling of failure. Time and time again. Tear after tear, year after year. Sometimes I’m proud of the woman I am because I’ve spent a hell of a long time becoming her, and other times I fall short with my need to be liked…valued…wanted. Where I fall short I hope to god one day others will prevail. Instead of sticking a patch of disapproval upon my breasts every time I refuse to show them. Or reminding me that you feel teased when I breathe because simply being alive and attracted is YOUR recipe for intimacy.

I shouldn’t have to be modest to be respected. I shouldn’t have to say “maybe next time” to secure interest. And I refuse to believe that I owe another human being anything. Not a date, not a conversation, not a number, not my body, not even this blog post…

But you’re welcome.

For one, some…and now none.

5 Ways To a Better Day

5 Ways To a Better Day

There are 53 Mondays in a year and not a single one of them excites me as much as a Friday. Why? Because starting anything over is never as fulfilling as finishing strong.

Like completing a sand castle.

Monday’s are just the rogue wave to Sunday’s flawlessly sculpted beach creation equipped with a perfectly dugout moat. Insert Monday:

Frankly, I’ve never met a Monday I didn’t want to put back in the deck. Thanks for dealing me a bullshit hand Mr. Work Week but I’m gonna fold. You know what’s a good work week draw? Four day weekends. You know what I’ve never had while working in the medical field? a substantial pay check, mental stability, Four day weekends.

So while the rest of the world anxiously awaits the next national holiday–or for some really well oiled companies–fuckin’ any dead presidents birthday, I look for ways to make all 53 of those god forsaken Mondays a little less Monday-y. (Also, I’m great at sharing so I listed them below)

Listen to good music. I’m too busy listening to said good music right now to research any statistics on this, but I imagine someone did the dirty work to prove that “feel good” music isn’t just a nick name. ( you know, like how Siri calls me ‘Sugar Tits’ and I know damn sure she means it ) Feel good music makes us feel….good. If you’re feeling good, chances are your day is probably getting better. This equation is as 101 as it gets.

Go through your contacts and delete anybody who doesn’t serve a purpose. There’s nothing that makes me more bummed out than clutter. Add shitty people into that clutter and we have ourselves a clean up on isle-Iphone. I’d be lying if I didn’t say that this lunch time excursion brings me so much joy. Mostly because taking my phone out of my pocket by dinner will likely ensure a “Hey, what’s up?” from a “Maybe: Kyle”….and I get to pull my favorite line out of my ass: “I’m sorry but, WHO IS THIS?” Plot twist…..Spring cleaning isn’t only necessary in the spring. Take the trash out weekly my friends.

Sweat. Hydrate. Repeat. No matter how many times I’ve groaned my way to the gym, I’ve never left it pissed that I spent any amount of time there. ~Except that one time I had a nipple slip on the smith machine trying to rack weights that never should have called for that kind of bodily exertion.~ Anyway….Can’t say the same for the mall. Buyers remorse is a real life urban dictionary option whereas gym remorse falls into the category of what many would consider a sin. Monday might be a steaming pile of dog shit by the time you get to lift a single weight or chug a glass of water, but even dog shit needs a pick me up sometimes. Literally.

Plan life events. So, it’s a Monday and you’re coming off the high of 48 hours straight of pure debauchery, what will inevitably peak the interest of your inner sinner? MORE DEBAUCHERY. Nothing says let’s forget about the pain of right now like catapulting your thoughts of future bad behavior into it’s place. The best way to cure the Monday Blues is to pretend like Monday doesn’t even exist, or better yet…what the next Monday you won’t be showing up for work looks like because you will likely be on a Caribbean island sipping cocktails equipped with bigger umbrellas than your work insurance policy. Give yourself something….anything, to look forward to and any day can go from “why did I even wake up?” to “I can’t wait to wake up 43 more times until my vacation!”.

Pay it Forward. No agenda, no expectations. Karma is a bigger bitch than I could ever be, and she lurks in the shadows of everyone’s philanthropic moments. She wants to know what kind of player in this game of life you are and she’s ready to change an entire day for you at the flip of a coin (the coin you either paid for the person behind you’s coffee with or the one you didn’t). There are no rules about the frequency or size of a good deed, but there is for sure science that equates feeling good with doing good. That’s bad English, but it rolled off the tongue better, so we’re keeping it. Altruism brings human beings bliss; plain and simple. **If this doesn’t apply to you, you’re dead inside…go home.

Bad days are still just days. Which means they are never-the-less tiny 24 hour gifts that we have the option of altering based on events, mood, opportunities, people, how much money I find on the ground, what kind of puppies show up to my work, how many chocolate shakes I get offered for free…the list goes on. If you’re having 99 problems, and a bitch is more than one of them try one of my top five quickest ways to tolerate a bad day and see if you can’t turn it around with a little shake up from the norm.

5 Steps To Overcoming Heartbreak

It’s hard to write about heartbreak when you are actively heartbroken. You know, like watching the waiter march to your table with a bowl of piping hot oatmeal when you’re hung over.With that said it’s taken me almost all of 2018 to put together how to be more put together when all you want to do is pour some accelerator and light the match.

Aw yes, that balance between knowing you’re a human being with feelings and wishing you just fucking weren’t for five minutes (shout out to my dog who I constantly call a shit-head and she knows none the wiser)

It’s not easy, but it’s doable…

Below, I give you: the five steps I’ve personally taken to help me overcome that overwhelming feeling that someone has essentially rung you out to dry; but like…in the rain

1. First of all, why can’t I ever have a step one without thinking about who’s responsible for cutting the hole in the box?

1B. Know what hurts.

Ignorance isn’t bliss; it’s just ignorance.

It’s funny, cause when I was a kid and I’d try to express my feelings to my father in a snot-filled-traumatic-mumble-tantrum, he used to verbally face palm me with the same question every time: “uhhhhh, your what hurts?” Great question, I HAVE NO CLUE. It was such a vague and blanketed response to my belligerency that it actually made me stop and try to figure out who my real father was what was causing my pain so that I was more equipped to not only explain it, but ease it. Science has proven that both heartache and grief are both legitimate forms of measurable physical pain. Which means painkillers as simple as Aspirin are actually equally recommended for the heart as they are the head. For the record, I mentioned over the counter aspirin, so don’t go buck wild on prescription opioids cause Tommy from Tinder ghosted you after he asked you to be his arm candy at this years company Christmas party. Or do. Natural selection.

2. Be present.

I have a habit of extremes. The power of living (or not living) in the here and now is no exemption. I am either extremely engulfed in a moment to the point of full acceptance OR, I fly so far off the handle about future anxieties that it’s almost like you are all invited to the opening of my new theatric production of “I Am Nothing Without Him”. Solid soundtrack. The cast is a little iffy. I used to think that the first step was just admitting it, right?

Wrong, the first step is taking a deep breath and remembering that if the future seems like it’s already overwhelmingly hard, how’s right now going for you? I imagine if you aren’t starting by being really good at today, there’s no hope for tomorrow. You’re cheating on today’s happiness with tomorrow’s what if’s and frankly everyone loses. Except the guy who broke your heart and sent you into this uncomfortable spiral. He’s winning all the chips.

3. Distract.

If we’re all being honest with ourselves, there’s no easier way to get over heart ache than with a distraction. We have a scientifically studied part of the brain called the reward system that often is directly linked to the biological effects of rejection whilst being in love. When that reward system is unmanaged, it’s addictive patterns appreciate a diversion from pain and explore a more sought after feeling of pleasure.I imagine there will be backlash with how I achieve this step, and to that I say…get a hobby. Even if his name is Jared. As much as I’d like to suggest picking up a a new interest in a less taboo subject like hot yoga to “decompress and center yourself”, investing time into getting to know someone new has always effectively kept me from running back to the fire and placing my hand directly in it. Can’t say the same for the Child’s Pose.Maybe that’s a reflection of how much I see the good in people, even the bad ones. But if it takes me diving into a whole new batch of potential-bullshit just so I don’t skip back to confirmed-bullshit…let us all be stoked to be dealt another hand.

4. Be reflective, not reactive.

For the longest time, whenever I got ghosted (I say ghosted because dumped would mean the man who stopped talking to me would have to tell me why he stopped talking to me, and frankly I’m 0/456) I IMMEDIATELY rack my brain for what I could have possibly done wrong. And then I need to know what exactly I did/said, how it made all parties feel, what I could have done differently, AND how I fix not only it but world hunger, the California water shortage, the war on drugs…EVERYTHING. I NEED TO FIX EVERYTHING, IMMEDIATELY. Basically, I react so hard I don’t even have the energy to reflect. And when I found this out about myself, I made it one of the steps in not only overcoming heartbreak, but honestly eliminating the length of time before you’re at peace with the situation.

Reactions are quick, take less thought, and are…come to think of it synonymous with defining most of my past relationships. However, reflections are how I further more chose to handle any future heartache. We don’t need to know why someone chooses not to like love tolerate us. All we need is to handle rejection with grace and selflessness which will in turn outline our character and keep us on a path to who and what we deserve.

5. Surround Yourself With Love

Endorphins are the gateway drug guys. You feel love one time and it’s hard to want to be in a state of anything less. Heartache is, in my opinion, the epitome of pain because it’s not just superficial. It’s mental AND it’s physical. Your legs are weak, your brain is foggy, and your eyes are swollen from hours of both of those things colliding, making it hard to want to do anything more than replay what you’ve lost and sulk about how hard it might be to regain.

This is a piggyback on distractions, but it deserves its own step. There are people who love and adore you who have been placed on life’s back burner while you danced to the beat of falling for another sucker. They rooted for you knowing this day might come. So keep them close enough to remember what it’s like to be unconditionally supported, and bring them closer when your heart isn’t sure what that feels like anymore. There are probably a plethora of additional steps that we as individuals practice on a heartbreak to heartbreak basis, but these five above really drill home the attempt at a quick turn around for me personally. This is coming from the girl who is just happy to be alive enough to feel, even the bad shit.

Youtoo

Youtoo

Bravery is contagious. And not contagious in a someone-sneezed-on-the-office-coffee-pot-again-cause-they-forget-that-some-of-us used all of our PTO in January catch-everything type way.

The thing is, the nature of the events of this week’s Ford-Kavanaugh hearing are a he-said-she-said ping pong match that ends in someone’s life ‘potentially being ruined’ and that other person being Christine Blasey Ford. She doesn’t get to fear the potential, because she’s already lived it. Maybe all of the revisited events were just moments he ‘cant remember’, but at the end of the day they are also memories she ‘can’t forget’.

Rape stories will be prevalent until rape is no longer minimalized to irrelevance. Sadly, we put people away longer for crimes of graffiti than we do sexual assault and people still wonder why it’s trending. Anything that bares little to no repercussion without a grand jury review is bound to be a trend in my book. Instilling the fear of potential consequences is barely a way to keep crimes off the street, but at least it’s not contrarily telling it’s offenders “we support your lack of moral compass”.

Even more sad are the statistics associated with said rising assaults. To a degree, some would say the rise of admission is to blame for the rise in percentage, but why is that even a rebuttal? Just because the story is new to you doesn’t mean it hasn’t haunted it’s victim for decades. With that said, I more recently googled just how many of my friends and neighbors might be holding on to an untold secret, and 1 in 5 women have or will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime. One finger on each of my hands is a symbol for the reality of the proximity of these casualties.

When I say it’s hard being female, I mean it. Sure, we have a laundry list of societal standards; a basic biological clock constantly ticking inside a highly emotionally charged hormone filled body, but we also have the immediate danger of becoming a statistic 15 times faster than if we had been born a male. And for that exact reason, I write this article.

If I had the choice, I wouldn’t choose to hold my keys between my fingers as I walk to my car at night. I didn’t wake up this specific gender to be told that I couldn’t wear a skirt on a summer day because of how it made other people feel about my body. And I most certainly never expected that I’d ever have my own story.

A man drove me home after a night of drinking and as he walked inside the gas station to get me a bottle of water, I quickly racked me brain for how it was I was sitting in a truck of a total stranger feeling completely taken advantage of. I immediately placed blame on myself for tequila shot number five. For not knowing how to get myself home safely. For trusting someone I had only just met (that’s how all great love stories start though, right? Wrong.) and as he got back in the car to a more silent version of my previous self he jokingly looked me directly in the eyes and said “You only said no twice.” To which I shrugged and said “Cool, that should hold up in court”. Its safe to say I think that I’m the wittiest, when I’m absolutely shattered inside.

And that was the last thing I said to someone I would never see again. Someone who would never know how uncomfortable I was because the lack of consent and humility turned him on and blinded him from the basic human concern of another person’s needs. He laughed at my expense as he handed me the water bottle- making sure I was hydrated while ironically dismantling me inside.

We don’t want to admit that abusers are our friends. That our friends are victims. That this world is filled with people who are selfish dishonest and cowardly. But, even if it doesn’t happen to you, it’s happening to people who you love and care about so by default it’s happening to all of us. I have to ask… if it’s happening to all of us, why are we still so afraid to believe the women of the metoo movement? Because of false reports?Because of political bullshit? Because publicly reliving criminal events in regards to sexual assault is sooooo uncomfortable….boo fucking hoo.

For the record falsely reported cases are so low in percentage that they aren’t even given a number.  Unlike the 20% of the people in whatever room you’re in right now suffering the pain of being an undeniable statistic of factual reports that will damage them for the rest of their lives. And politicians? They can go fuck themselves. Just don’t expect them to ask for consent when they do. 

Christine ford is the definition of bravery. I hold faith that her story was brought to the public eye not to haunt an already wounded supreme court justice nominee, but to remind the voiceless that although some may not believe you, enough people care and only in untold stories and silence, we may have never known. I believe these women because I have to believe that you would believe me too. And that is the entire basis behind the appropriately named movement that is bound to make history.

The Summer of 2027

The Summer of 2027

All the things you forget on my bedside table are just metaphors for the little things you leave half empty for me to take care of; for me to remember you might come back for, for me to remember you might not.

Wrong numbers are just right numbers you didn’t know existed. Until existence straightens itself out for fate to make an appearance. A series of numbers leading to a series of days ending in hoping I’d have hung up at the sound of a busy tone. But, you answered. For the first time, and a thousand times after that. And then never again.

Endless summers of ended summers where I told you everyone I ever loved hurt me…and you followed suit. Knowing my truths, so you could feed me lies. Shame on me for giving you the details.

The Sane Part of Insanity

The Sane Part of Insanity

Am I a fully licensed and accredited therapist now? BECAUSE MY DATING RECORD WOULD SHOW THAT I’VE PUT IN THE HOURS. Totally google-able, totally diagnosable.

I know what I’m doing here. Send my certificate in the mail.

The irony is, Im always the one who winds up being called ‘crazy’. Or at least being made to feel that way. Which, arguably, is way worse. Like, just call me crazy so I can write you off as a prick. Don’t turn this around and send me screen shots of my own text messages. I KNOW THAT I SENT YOU BOTH A HEART AND A KNIFE EMOJI IN SUCCESSION, being confused doesn’t make me unloveable, Chad.

So, get this….turns out, doctors don’t actually officially diagnose people as sociopaths vs psychopaths, but like…they exist. I date them. What the fuck are doctors good for anymore anyway? Pushing the opioid epidemic? Falsely representing the male population with fake diagnosis’ like: “hormonal imbalances”? No. Homeboy has no conscience, I checked for myself.

Literally the only difference between a sociopath and a psychopath is the existence of said conscience and honestly, I think it’s safe to say that this generation is lacking hard in the realm of defining right from wrong.

Right: call her when you say you’ll call

Wrong: literally any other excuse your ass can think up to get his cake and eat it too.

I’ve had harder lessons in how to brush my hair as a kid. Side note: rat’s nest Taryn came out strong.

In my honest opinion there shouldn’t be such an existential variable when it comes to the ability to consider another human beings’ feelings and act appropriately and accordingly. Everyone deserves empathy and frankly those same people also deserve the tools they need to understand a shift in behavior by anybody they’ve invested any [lengthy] amount of time into. ***This is where I should be defining “lengthy” for the crowd. Frankly my “lengthy” is always different than his “lengthy”. Cause this is where men go hard on their genitalia perimeters and dial it back for “time spent telling her that I loved her”.

If you say you owe a stranger nothing, you’re wrong. Strangers are the people who we should be giving just a little more respect to….because it’s not expected and kindness that is least expected is probably the only way out of this generational defect we’ve built around our emotional avoidance in the last two decades; or however long I’ve been alive and trying to co-exist with males.

I always told myself I wouldn’t settle. Not for anything less than what I deserved. All I truly know is….we all deserve not-a-sociopath, AT THE VERY LEAST. Boy did my standards get low…

Hashtag Unfollow

Hashtag Unfollow

Risk had it’s rewards when I let it guide my twenties with an insatiable passion for being able to admit that I feared absolutely nothing; not even a broken heart. I navigated online dating sites coast to coast for a decade sure of one thing, “there is always safety in numbers”. Ok fine, maybe mom meant something different by her idiom, but she’s not entirely wrong. Quantity, when relating to desire, always gave quality a soft place to land when it realized that people were horrible and NOTHING EVER LASTS.

So whenever I have a hard time understanding why men can’t focus on one woman at a time, I graciously remember my twenties and all the eggs I put in vast amounts of “who wants to get drunk and cuddle with me tonight” baskets. And then I remember, I’m not in those pants sizes my twenties anymore and putting up with that kind of behavior is like ordering a drink at the dj booth; one of you looks stupid and the other person is just upset that you interrupted mediocre danceclub remixes.

If we’re being honest, men rarely attempt to commit to something great until it either starts dating his best friend or literally fucking dies. Like, there’s no in between. Either you play the game, or you lose your marbles…and then the will to live. I wish the ability to drive a sane woman to utter mental chaos took the same amount of effort it does to knowingly start following “Senorita Assclap” and liking three hundred of her photos on Instagram. Men are actually so dumb, that these kinds of public displays of idiocy are no match for their judgment.

Fun social media Fact: if a guy likes even two of my photos (usually one from this year and one from THE DEEP ARCHIVES) every girl knows he’s down to pound. So, save us all the feed space and wear a shirt that says “I need attention from multiple women at once or I struggle to function.” And thennnnn, we know not to fucking date you.

Not that the fair-warning will keep us from trying.

“Do the best you can until you know better, and once you know better, do better”.

Aint that right Maya Angelou? That saint of a woman also said “there is no greater agony than baring an untold story inside of you” and I honestly, I haven’t felt so connected to a dead person since Tupac’s hologram at Coachella 2012.

I digress…

There is a golden virtual rule and it goes something like this: don’t give off the illusion of having many choices because it will make it harder to find viable options.

The truth is, just cause you’re not doing anything that- bad doesn’t mean you’re doing anything that-good. This isn’t a by-default world.

Gentleman, I’ll have you know that when us women spiral, we spiral hard and if you think that social media is safe from investigation leading into interrogation and followed by 4 years of blocking- no parole…you’re mistaken. We know what you did last summer, last night, and it wouldn’t be too far off to assume that we already know what location you’ll be tagged in, blurry and unphased, by lolitagirl69’s tag marker next weekend. This is a social media world, and we’re all just living in brief moments of social engagement vs true persona.

Lastly, to my fragile and semi-broken ladies…get you a man who doesn’t just like your social media presence infrequently amongst a sea of other thirst traps, but actually appreciates the filter-less depth of the real and authentic (as crazy as you are) you. Because, remember, that everything is cool until it just isn’t anymore. Think, LimeWire. Think, The Harlem Shake. Think…Instagram in literally two years. #wastedthirties #literally #figuratively #whyarehashtagssomuchgoddamnfun

Singled Out

Singled Out

Being romantically un-involved used to be an insecurity of mine. One that was carried around with me like a mole I refused to get checked. That was until, I went three plus years having the daunting misfortune of being single without any answers as to why it was so. At some point you just have to come to terms with your fate. Like being significantly tall with a love for heels or tone deaf amidst a family of singers. Most of the time I pretend it’s poor timing or bad luck, but I’m not so naive to believe i’m just not everyone’s cup of tea.

Right around year two I found myself noticing potential reasons, and verbally proclaiming “Yup, this is why I’m single” out loud. The list grew and frankly, if society can’t cope with my quirkiness, fuck it, I hope I never have to commit to being anybody other than me. Not even for frequent sex or someone to help paddle the boat back to shore.

My friends try to make me feel better by throwing Hail Mary’s like: “God’s just not done writing your love story yet”. That’s cute, but I just told potential suitor #1 that I’ve been known to make out with my dog longer than three seconds. Whoops. 


There are handfuls of explanations as to why I’m not married; most of them being because I’m really good at being single, and why screw up a good thing? Do something long enough, and we’re all pro’s. But below are what I think are some of the main causes in no particular order:

  • I’m temperature sensitive- meaning, I can barely think about anything else but being comfortable when it’s too hot or too cold. Some guys find that the amount of times I get up and down to turn on and off the air conditioner is in direct correlation with how indecisive I can be about literally everything else that I have minimal control over. Climate change is only making me more single. Personally, I think I look really cute in your sweatshirt AND also, absolutely nothing. I’ll inevitably tire myself out complaining about the weather, so in my defense…you’re welcome.
  • I’m a grammar Nazi- in light of the recent Charlottesville attacks, I realize that this verbiage may be too soon. But, that leads me to another reason why I’m probably single and that is that I forget the importance of filters. Also, I refuse to date a moron so when your dating profile is riddled with illiteracy I’m privy to assume that you’d turn me off quicker than a clap on lamp. People fancy being dumb, look who we elected president. Men these days don’t want their love letters spell checked, and I get that. But I’d rather be alone than receiving ‘cumming home to ur fine ass 2nite’. #killme
  • I realize dating is a game, and I’m done playing it- three years ago I hosted a personal walk off. I came to terms with the fact that there was nothing in the relationship I was in that would keep me interested in the sport forever. I got back into it; a couple innings here and there. Struck out hard. Not because I was afraid to swing, but because there were hecklers in the stands distracting me from a good play. And also because nobody plays fair. We live in a world where the only way out is cheating. Remember when we were kids? If we caught anybody peeking during heads up seven up, they were dead to us. Frankly, that’s how I roll out my rules as an adult.
  • I’m transparent- for a very long time, I refused to acknowledge that society would view this as a negative. But, I write a blog about bullshit that infuriates me, about the kind of love that excites me, and about reflective moments that I feel everyone can relate to. It’s a blessing and a curse and I see it from more points of view than most people think, but for every man it frightens it allows me a tiny bit of relief, and for that reason alone, I’d rather be single than be quiet. I remember a time when men would complain about their women not telling them how they feel, and making them “guess”. Give me three to five business days and you will have a full article on why I didn’t appreciate you eating the last yogurt… #noteveryonescupofyoplait
  • I’m compulsive- Sounds thrilling, right? I am certain there’s a guy out there for me, but if we are talking majority…I see why most men would find my bucket list overwhelming. I just want to make it to every country before the end of the weekend. Is that too much to ask? Not to be confused with spontaneity, because I usually think these things through way in advance, it’s just that once I set my mind to something I let it control me almost immediately. LAY OFF ME I’M STARVING.
  • I can’t dance- no, like I can’t even do the choreographed songs that come on at the bar. At all. Sweet Caroline? Too many bum-bum-bums…every time. I have less swag than a box of cracker jacks. My generation speaks in movement and I can barely fake-reel-in my dance floor fish without tripping over both left feet. I presume guys are more attracted to the stripper in another life type women. You win this round, twerk-angel.
  • I’m too busy sleeping- last, but certainly not least. If I could date a nap, I would. There is literally nothing more exciting to me than being unconscious from the world for 6-10 hours a day. And unless we meet in my dreams, I doubt we could make this work. I work long hours, on my feet all day and there’s just not enough minutes in a work day to completely be engulfed in a relationship sometimes. Whoever finds themselves changing my relationship status is going to be a professional pajama wearer, thank you 30’s!

I always believe that there’s no reason to be in a relationship until you meet someone who makes your life better than it is when you’re not in one. When I put it that way, it sounds like quite the feat. But, I’m not at a total loss just yet. There’s always hope that someone is going to be a genius wordsmith with dashing good looks, minimal interest in dancing and zero fear. Did I mention ‘smells like bacon’? Hey, a girl can dream…

I Like The Sound You Make When You Shut Up.

I Like The Sound You Make When You Shut Up.

As luck would have it, I’ve found a way to dig my own grave at every corner of love. There are more holes in the ground than notches on my bed post, and I have nobody to blame but my mouth. I’m a self proclaimed, and often labeled “over-thinker”. If you’re anything like me you think, and you think and you think yourself into scenarios that are fictitious and absurd. Only once in a blue moon do you save yourself from a true monstrosity.  Keep your damn thoughts and questions to yourself, and maybe you won’t scare them ALL away, princess.

“Just sit there and look pretty”; offensive but necessary. The less you and I pry for information the easier it will be to go with said flow. I don’t need to know if you’re looking for a relationship before our dates over. Didn’t my mother ever teach me that actions speak louder than words? Well if my heart has anything to say about it, they don’t. Some men are so good at walking the walk these days that you’re in for a treat when he stops talking to you even after a million displays of affection. I’ve trial-and-error’d just about every thing possible to say after getting home from a first date and this is a list of the top four “open-mouth-insert-foot” moments:

“Are you looking for more than just a hook up?”-  Nice, make him insecure about his physical attraction to you. This wins you a trip to never-touching-you-againville. Nobody likes to feel like a slut, not even sluts. So by insinuating that their interest is only that of the sexual kind, implies that they’ve done something, well…wrong. Either way, you’re going to get an answer you don’t want. Because if he says no, you’re just going to ask him if he’s sure until he admits that it’s natural for him to want sex because he’s human…and if he says yes, you’re gonna think he’s a slime ball. Nobody wins this question round. Steer clear of this at all costs and look for signs instead.

“Do you like me?”- Pump the breaks. He doesn’t know if he likes you because he literally just met you. Most normal people like to experience the Jekel and the Hyde before they verbally assure anyone that they find you suitable as a partner. Never ask a man if he likes you, if he likes you he will show it…you will know it, and it’s going to bother him if you need that kind of grade school reassurance. If he doesn’t call, doesn’t ask you out again, doesn’t text you after the date, as the movie is titled…he’s just not that into you. And no, he doesn’t like you.

“When can I see you again?”- I used to think of this as romantic, and as time went on, I found it to be a bit overbearing. Life happens, and you need to let it so that whatever this generation’s need for immediate acceptance is, can be put to rest by unplanned moments. I wish I wasn’t so anxious about getting off of one date just to find out when the next one is, but these days if you don’t make a plan, he’s gonna make one with the next girl on his list. It’s sad, but we just have to remember that if we are good enough, they won’t want to look any further.

Are you the relationship type?- There is a strong chance that this makes you look like you ask everyone this question. Like you want to know if anybody, good or bad, wants to be your boyfriend. Relationship ‘types’ will shine through. Asking him if this is what he is looking for is almost like asking him if that’s what he wants right now. And that’s creepy. This question is better left for date five, if you can make it there.

It’s not adorable to be this deplorable. Any guy who get’s a text or phone call with these questions is automatically re-thinking his interest no matter how well the first date went. Ironically, you thinking too much has now made him think just a little bit more about a future together. Take my advice and just shut, shut, shut your mouth.

Don’t Forget Your Bullet Proof Vest

Don’t Forget Your Bullet Proof Vest

At this moment there are 7.2 billion people in the world. Give or take a few. And sometimes all you need is one…to ruin your day.

It’s no secret that I have the metabolism of an adult hippopotamus, and those that have known me through literal thick and thin, know that even the food I DON’T eat, goes straight to my thighs. The last time I checked, sixty-eight percent of American’s are considered ‘overweight’. That means that if I’m not the one lucky skinny friend of four, I’m sitting in the pseudo-fat boat with at least two other women who often times just barely tip the scales. So why do I always feel so exposed? Why does this journey feel so solitary? Where do you keep all of your insecurities?

The other day I made small talk with a stranger I hadn’t seen in a while, because from time to time I enjoy the feeling of connecting with like minds. I sometimes forget that the people who are the most in despair are the same ones who strive to take the wind out of other peoples sails. I knew he wasn’t going to give me anything I needed, but I sent the text anyway because well,  I like to gamble. (You know, the text that’s either going to get no response and spiral you into depression or warrant an unexpected response and send you directly to cloud nine.) It’s safe to say I got neither.

“You’re fat and you’re ugly, and at best you were good for a laugh” I read. I glanced around for the Play-Doh. Apparently I’d been transported back to grade school and not appropriately warned of the time travel. At what point in the three months that I haven’t conversed with this “nobody” did I warrant a lashing so personal and vindictive? The answer is, never. I’m writing this three days post textual beat down and am still in complete shock. I guess it’s fair to say he won, because I cry every time I think about it.

Between the self pity and desire to be insecure-free I find myself wondering how many other women like myself get bullied while dating. I knowingly put myself in a position to automatically be critiqued daily by the opposite sex just by merely being single and I do it because I believe that at one point pain has it’s purpose. Not everyone is going to love you Taryn, and that’s ok. You’re ok.

As my desire for acceptance is profoundly more sensitive to criticism I often take the verbal abuse to heart, and I have no clue why. Why does anybody care what other people think? Because being resistant to opinions is not in our nature. Nobody is ever so sure of themselves that they give less fucks than the tree they are standing in front of.

Body image is a can of worms I just don’t even want to tap into tonight, but I have to at least touch on the fact that most people are going to think the world of me, and when I least expect it, someone won’t. Just as it takes only one person to ruin my day, it takes just one person to love me beyond any hurtful words can scar. Dating is a tricky stage of on going assessment; all eyes are on you as you aim to meet expectations you didn’t know exist. We are at war for love, did you bring your bullet proof vest?

Cereal Dater

Cereal Dater

Relationships are hard. You know what’s not? Cereal for dinner.

Lately I’ve had days on my feet that bring me directly home to a bowl full of honey-nut-cherri-no’s drowned in 2% suicide milk. There isn’t a microwavable dish in the world that could get me to spend my last bit of energy on “cutting a slit in the middle”. I’ll cut a slit in the middle alright, a slit in the middle of everyone’s neck after a 13 hour work day. Jokes. My terrorism skills are about as basic as my cooking. Protein, vegetable, starch, dessert. Always dessert.

While I’ve been known to like my flakes frosted, I still refuse to date one. Breakfast for dinner always supersedes putting in effort after a long work day to make even a two-course meal. That’s the very definition of how men view dating these days. If they can pour a bowl full of easy, they’d rather not spend the time doing extra dishes. And while were on the topic of flakes, the next guy to make me shave my legs in anticipation for their arrival and then “fall asleep before they could make it out the door”, dies. I get it, work days are long, life is hard, but for Christ’s sake set an alarm you narcoleptic tool pouch.

I don’t know if you know what goes on in the mind of a woman who’s been stood up, but it’s anywhere from “He’s sleeping with my best friend” to “I’m a bag of fat”. When in reality the culprit is just face deep in some pillows with his phone on accidental silent. There is no worse feeling than the moment you realize you’re the only one who showed up for your date. You sit there wondering where the line between concern and crazy blur, writing point A to point B text messages that are both rational and irrational in succession. Nobody sits through the anticipation, followed by embarrassment, and deals with it normally.

Instinctively there are five stages of being stood up:

Acceptance
Concern
Saddness
Anger
Revenge

“Hey, it’s been about a half hour, I take it you aren’t coming over?”

“Hey, it’s been about an hour, you ok?”

“Hey, it’s been two hours, bummed you aren’t here yet :(”

“Hey, it’s been three hours, if you’re not going to come can you just say so, don’t keep wasting my fucking time asshole.”

“Hey, it’s been a week, you didn’t show up Friday so I slept with your brother”

That’s it. Every time. Some women toggle between acceptance and concern to avoid being labeled crazy. And then there’s me….who is so absolutely jaded by being stood up so often that I just swing directly for revenge. Sometimes even prematurely. Whoops. We sprung forward, our clocks are off and I’m over here letting the air out of your tires. Hey, if you aint early, you’re late. Get with the program.

Tonight I write you this from my couch. With a whole bowl full of time un-wasted. With absolutely no dates on my calendar. Just a pantry full of the easiest clean up I’ll have all week. Unlike men this week, General Mills is getting all my thrills. Cheers to being a cereal dater.

Keep It Moving

Keep It Moving

::Insert cliché quote about traveling while you’re young::

I know it’s not realistic to assume that everyone has the means, but that’s just it, you don’t have to.  In just two short weeks, I’m becoming a Colorado resident. Why? Because why not? Why just visit, if you can live it? There’s more to life than being born into a place our parents grew up in and trying to find our way in one city, one county, one state.

This will be the 8th time I’ve packed and unpacked in the past three years. I guess It’s a good thing I’ve condensed everything into a mid sized sedan worth’s move. I’d like to think that going through these four or five boxes would get easier each time. It hasn’t. For some, it’s a way to sift through their collections. For me, it’s been a reminder of everything I’ve given up.

I store things in my mind, and bring them back into fruition through stories, not trinkets. Although my journey hasn’t been tangible, I know the less I have, the quicker I can justify my escapes. What ever the opposite of a hoarder is, that’s what I suffer from. Today I stopped myself from throwing away my diploma because it meant nothing to me. It took up a place in a box, that took up a place in my car, that I’ve been dragging along for the ride. A stupid piece of paper, trying to keep up with me.

I don’t own a bed, or a dresser, or an ironing board for that matter. I borrow, I return, and I keep it moving. Essentially I have nothing, and some days that makes me feel like I have everything.

Red Flags

Red Flags

“Whenever anything negative happens to you, there is a deep lesson concealed within it, although you may not see it at the time. Brief episodes of poor conditions can show you what is real and what is unreal in your life, what ultimately matters and what doesn’t. Seen from a higher perspective conditions are always positive. To be more precise: they are neither positive nor negative. They are as they are. And when you live in complete acceptance of what is there is no “good” or “bad” in life. Whenever you notice that some form of negativity has arisen within you, look at it not as a failure, but as a helpful signal that is telling you: Wake up. Get out of your mind. Be present. ”

The Power of Now by Eckert Tolle

I found myself on a tropical island this weekend. Besides the scenic boat rides, clear waters, yacht sun bathing and impromptu jet skiing I left my trip with an addition to my suitcase. The excerpt above is from the page I flipped open to in a book I found on the streets of Avalon at 4 in the morning. Ill let that sink in. It’s ironic, but almost comical at this point due to the omen it presents. Since I chose to play grab ass with the tall fighter pilot at our last bar stop for the night, my friends went home without me. I walked down a cobble stone alley way, alone, asking strangers if they knew how to get to an address I was obviously pronouncing wrong. I only had about a mile of land before I dropped off into the pacific, so I drudged on confidently. As I turned the corner to a street that looked familiar I looked down to find a book face down in the dirt. Reading the title was like getting kicked in the mouth. THE POWER OF NOW: A guide to spiritual enlightenment. Ouch.

I always ask for signs, and I always get them.

A little over a year ago I remember sitting in the hallway to my work and crying to my sister about how much I felt the relationship I was in was going south. I didn’t know if it was me, or if it was him, or if it was even anything to salvage. I just knew I needed someone to tell me what would make me the happiest. She told me to do what I felt in my heart to be right. If I know anything, it’s that my heart would be of no help. So I took a break. You know, those bullshit excuses you make to be able to get out of an uncomfortable situation by just sweeping everything under the rug? I blew the Pennsylvania popsicle stand and came home to my friends and family where I was sure I knew how to BE. My boyfriend and I went back and forth about him moving out here and I felt the pain of guilt for even asking him to uproot his life, and he obliged. Of course the distance made me fall in love again. It was everything I wanted in that moment down to the ring we picked out as we planned our future together. And then I got the phone call that he was going to be a father, and not to anything I was carrying.  I mean, as far as flags go…that’s about as red as they get.

I almost married a man I wasn’t entirely sure about because I was stuck on a future with somebody being better than being alone. People do that every day. And I get to tell the story, not live the mistake. Something is steering me somewhere and it’s so outlandishly obvious that it scares me to a degree. Every guy who doesn’t call me back, every relationship that doesn’t work out, every moment that frustrates me to the point of tears…How lucky am I to have dodged those bullets?

When I arrived on the island this weekend I brought with me a sense of panic.(and a bottle of Jameson, to offset the fear) I’ve been out of a job for almost two months now and my funds are running low. I couldn’t stop thinking about how I was going to pay for a good time. The boat ride over was dedicated to scanning craigslist for potential jobs, and the bar hopping was, for me, just one giant scan for husbands. I spent more time worrying about tomorrow, instead of enjoying today. I needed a shake, and it showed up in the form of a book packed full of highlighted literature about how to stop worrying and really start living. I hate using the word blessed because I feel like a lot of us get these little wake up calls, I’m just really in tune with utilizing them to their fullest potential. So the next time your guardian angel taps you on the shoulder with an unexplainable omen, make sure you take the irony and apply it to the path you were born to take. Presence, positivity and letting go of anything that doesn’t better you along the way. Or at least that’s what my new book says.

IMG_1669

“Sorry to have kept you waiting”

“That’s alright. I wasn’t waiting. I was just standing here, enjoying myself…in joy, in myself.”

How Do I Get You Alone?

How Do I Get You Alone?

Being alone doesn’t phase me. I spent nine months in a womb full of goo only to be shot out into a world of dependency. When I was younger I collected girlfriends like it was my job; selling ‘besties’ for a pencil on the playground. In my early twenties I collected boyfriends like it was my future; selling dignity for a date with our high school quarter back. I never saw solitude as an accomplishment…until today.

There is something so glorious about standing in a crowd, cell phone stowed away, staring at a bunch of strangers who are all paired up with people they may, or may not like.  My plus-one expectations completely eliminated by the sheer disposal of needing anybody by my side. I have to go to the bathroom? Cool, nobody needs to wait for me. I want to switch up the plan? Perfect, haven’t ruined anybody’s day with my indecisiveness. The amount of hours gained in a day by only worrying about oneself are exponential, something I’m sure I’ll miss as I grow older and start a family.

Last year I drove across the United States, alone. When I would take breaks at trucker stops and sit down to collect my thoughts on paper, people would approach me and ask me if the Pennsylvania plates were mine. They wanted to know what I was doing so far away from ‘home’. Chasing storms in the mid west was scary enough, but being a woman on her own was far more terrifying to strangers. For the longest time I always believed that every story was better told by many mouths instead of one. I felt that in order to experience anything to it’s fullest I had to be in that experience with others. Since leaving a very liberating venture on the East Coast I have found more comfort and peace in loneliness than I’d ever found in companionship. Today I fill the void of another human with the love I have for myself.

I am so incredibly elated each time that I get to draft a day that is dedicated to self reflection. Poolside, beach bound, or at home on this laptop with my blog, I soak up every moment I have to myself, with myself. I know it may seem that I peruse the land for a future husband (and if not, check out my blog post: A Letter To The Literal Man Of My Dreams), but the truth of it is…it’s no skin off my back if it’s not today, tomorrow or the next. Because dating me is like that cupcake without icing; a bit incomplete but way less regret in the end. When I think about the weekend, I don’t think about all the dates I can line up with guys who probably won’t return my calls. I set up states to visit, ball games to go to and bars to sit at unaccompanied. I’m all the company I need.

Society tells us that being ‘without’ makes you less than. I tell myself, who I am, is all I need. When I’m alone I experience mindfulness far beyond any coffee shop chat with a friend, or potential partner. I clear out my clutter and I count minutes of happiness instead of seconds of anxiety. Alone doesn’t mean strange, it means independence and with that freedom comes possibility. I’ve never felt more able to live, love and learn than I do in these moments I spend forgetting about social norms and operating selfishly.

Over time, every single person you know and love will let you down in some way. That’s life. All you have is, you. Embracing this instead of letting solitude define you is the fastest way to grow. I know this, because I just lived it. I would cry when my weekend would come to an uneventful close and curse the names of those who bailed on me for the 8th time. I spent more time and energy on hating others instead of loving myself. What a silly waste of moments, moments where I could have been standing on the edge of a hiking trail overlooking the pacific ocean and remembering the good times instead of dwelling on the bad.

Once in your life, before you die, fall madly in love with yourself. Do it for nothing else but the moment between need and have where you give potential to a prosperous existence. Love being alone before you crave it so deeply that it’s availability escapes you. Distance yourself from the voices of the world, and listen to your own.