Showing posts from 2016

Public Private Letters, Part 6: Dear (Hopeful) Husband.

Dear (Hopeful) Future Husband,

I don't know where you are, or if you even exist. Perhaps God is calling me to a life of singleness. I'd probably go down that route kicking and screaming though. (If I'm being honest, I already have been kicking and screaming while wondering where you are!)

It's always been part of my life dream to be married and have a family. So, I'm truly waiting for you, Husband. I am. But you are not a guarantee or a promise by any means. I know that God has promised me many things, and you, Husband, are not one of those things. This is the reason why I will treasure you all the more if you do enter into my life.

So far, in my 25 years, I've been perpetually single. This has been a blessing and a frustration. I fully believe God has protected my very tender heart from being broken time and time again. You see, I love freely and I love hard. Because of this, I am prone to falling in love (or infatuation at the very least) easily. The Lord my …

Public Private Letters, Part 5: Dear Colby.

Dear Colby,

I know I said my last letter to you would be the one in your casket, but I can't help it. Today would have been your 21st birthday and I've been thinking about you a lot over the past few months--especially today. I've thought about more and more how short your life was. Beautiful, but short. You seemed like you were only just beginning. We were growing closer over the months before you died. I feel as though so much has been stolen from me. But, then again, life IS a gift, one that we are not guaranteed, so how could that gift have been stolen if it wasn't ours yet? It was a gift I absolutely took for granted. I would like to say I'll never do that again, but that would be foolish. I take life for granted daily, even after your death.

Can I be really honest? Some days I do not want to be alive--to be breathing and hurting. I'm not suicidal, I promise. I would NEVER hurt myself. But some days I wish for an escape. I wish for pain-free. I long for He…

Public Private Letters, Part 4: Dear Merritt.

Dear Merritt,

Have I told you lately that I'm proud of you? Well, I am. I'm proud of how strong you are, how hard you work, how much you care about others, and so much more! Even though you're physically shorter than me, I always have and always will look up to you!

I was sad to learn you couldn't make it to my birthday celebration this weekend, but I hope all goes well with beginning the process of planning/writing your thesis! I have realized more and more that graduate school is not for me (at least not right now), and I have more and more respect for those who are able to succeed and do well in graduate school. You're one of those, of course! And you're going on to get your doctorate! I couldn't be more proud.

Merritt, you're one of those friends who can tell me the truth. You're a true friend because you are capable of being really honest with me about things that truly matter, and you handle that truth with grace. I trust you with knowing abou…

Public Private Letters, Part 3: Dear Brooke.

Dear Brooke,

It's your birthday! Hooray! You're 25 on the 25th. Happy Golden Birthday! I wanted to wish you a happy birthday by writing you this public private letter today.

Well, as you know, my birthday is in 5 days--just 5 days after you were born, so was I! Hooray for being born! But really, it's a blessing to be alive. The older I get, the more I realize this. I mean, living hasn't always been easy--for you or for me. There's been three times when my world sort of got turned upside down, and I know you've had a few of those as well. For me, the first was when I had cancer at age 10. The second time was the dark days of my hospitalization in 2013 and the following months of recover. The third time was when my cousin Colby and then my Aunt Jan died. You've stuck by my side through all of these and more. Through thick and thin, we've been pals. Since 4th grade we've been buddies. But more than buddies or pals, our friendship has grown into somethi…

Public Private Letters, Part 2: Dear Kayla.

Dear Kayla,

I have some news, perhaps. I think I have decided to get my hair cut. It's time for a change. I don't know how drastic of a change just yet, but I'm just may be pretty short by the end of this!

Yes, it's time for a change. I'll start from the outside and make my way into my mind and my heart. Starting with some physical changes, I'll make my way to spiritual, emotional, and mental changes. You see, the last few weeks things haven't been working. I've spent far too much time in bed, sleeping my life away. I'm done with that. Starting right now, I'm done with sleeping away my life. Although I am fed up with feeling "stuck" here in Abilene, I want more than anything to participate and be fully present. So...I'm doing what it takes to make some changes. Starting with my hair!

You're the first person I've told about my decision to get my hair cut. Granted, I just decided tonight, and I'm also posting …

Public Private Letters, Part 1: Dear Carlee.

Dear Carlee,
Remember a few years ago when we had an idea to make inspirational/funny YouTube videos back and forth to each other, like Hank and John Green do? Well, as you know, we never quite got that idea off the ground. It wasn't realistic for us, right now at least. Maybe some day when we are wildly successful and have more money and somehow more spare time...or not, whatever! Anyway, I was watching one of John Green's new videos, and then watched the one that his brother Hank made before that, and I suddenly I had an idea:Why don't I just write Carlee a letter on my blog?And, hence, Public Private Letters was, an hour ago.  So let's get to it. 
Oh, how I miss you, my friend. I hope you are well. I was so very happy to learn of your nephew's birth. You're an aunt! How wonderful and exciting! It made my day to see pictures of him. I look forward to hearing more about him. 
I wish I could come see the show you're in right now, but alas, I cannot…


I had a great summer. It wasn't the summer I thought I would have by any means, but it actually turned out to be a great summer. I got into a routine, went to counseling, worked through some things, cleaned out my closet, went to several friends' weddings, visited California, etc. It was good, even great, like I said before.

I did not go back to Argentina this year, which is what I had originally planned. But plans change, do they not? I know that because I've lived in a pattern of changed of plans. Change has been my constant companion. I have a love-hate relationship with change. It is neither inherently good or bad--it just IS. Change happens. Change exists. Only my own thinking makes change good or bad.

So, NOT going back to Argentina this year? This was neither good nor bad. But I thought it was either one or the other, at times. But not going back this year was not really good OR just...WAS. I WAS going. And then I was NOT.

Now I'm back at ACU, for the 7…

Dear Bipolar Disorder.

Dear Bipolar Disorder,

Under the recommendation of my therapist, I'm writing you a letter. It took me a few days to work up the courage to even want to "speak" to you.

Can I call you B.D?
You see, B.D...I hate you.
I hate what you make me say and do.
I hate who I have been because of you.
I hate when I lost control of my mind and you took over for a while.
I hate the way I sometimes treat my friends and family members because of you, B.D.
I hate what I imagine people think of me because of YOU.
I hate the part of me that is forever entwined with you.

You've changed my life in so many ways, and for the most part, I hate you for it. I hate your guts, Bipolar Disorder. You demand so much from me and those who love me. You cause me to say and do things I would never say or do on my own. For all of that and more, I hate you.

And yet, you are part of me. You are not all of me and I'll never again let you be my full identity. Yet, however much I want to let you go, I ca…

Feeling Stuck.

Do you ever feel stuck?

I'm sitting in the campus center of the university where I have been a student off-and-on for the last six years. I love this place, but I must admit I'm growing weary. I'm tired, and not just physically.

I am emotionally, mentally, socially, and yes, physically exhausted.

I cannot tell you how hard it is to feel "stuck" in one place for six years while all around me people are graduating, moving, getting jobs, dating, getting engaged, getting married, buying houses, having babies and so on. Or maybe you already know because you feel the same way.

Here I am: almost twenty-five years old, and still several semesters away from earning the degree I set out to earn at age eighteen, and I have never even changed my major.


This stuck feeling?
It's deep down, buried inside, and sometimes it comes out in the worst ways...

It can make you feel like a failure, even if you're not a failure at all.
It can make you feel like you'll n…

To Mom and Dad: 35 Thank You's for 35 Years.

This month my parents celebrated their 35th wedding anniversary. I made them a scrapbook titled, "Thirty-five thank you's for thirty-five years." It included pictures, and I must say, it was a big hit with Mom and Dad. The following are my 35 "thank you's" that were in the scrapbook, in a slightly different, unnumbered order. Without further ado, here are my 35 things: 

"Dear Mom and Dad,
Congratulations on 35years of marriage! There are many things I am thankful for about the two of you, but here are just 35 in celebration of your 35th year of marriage:
1. Thank you for teaching me to always look for sales...especially at Kohl's! 2. Thank you for teaching me to always say "I love you" when I hang up the phone or when I leave home. 3. Thank you for teaching me that I  shouldn't throw my clothes on the floor…and for forgiving me when I still do it all the time. 4. Thank you for teaching me that no matter what happens in our lives, as long a…

Shame & Labels.

I got an email the other day that a member of our university's newspaper staff would like to interview me for an article about the new Mental Health Awareness Group starting up on campus this semester. I am not in charge of said group (which still doesn't have an official name), but I plan to be an active member of the group. I am passionate about mental health education, advocacy, and support for those who struggle (myself included). 
Long before I went to talk to the newspaper staff member, I called my Dad and excitedly told him I'd been chosen to be interviewed. 
My father, upon hearing about this interview, said something along the lines of, "Well, just don't reveal anything too personal." 
While I understood his reaction (because I know he loves me and wants to protect me), I asked him, "Why not? What do I have to be ashamed of?" To which he replied, "I just don't want people to be afraid of you or stop coming around you once they know yo…

This is My Brave.

Today was my 3rd anniversary. 
No, I'm not married, or celebrating 3 years of dating. (I'm contentedly single, if you must know. But I wouldn't be unhappy with 2016 being a year for a new relationship, if you were wondering.) 
Today was not the anniversary of a birth, death, graduation, or any other such monumental life moment. However, it was monumental for me. 
Today, three years ago, I was quietly and quickly released from a psychiatric ward in my hometown. My parents picked me up in my mother's car where my five-month-old puppy was waiting for me. We stopped at Taco Bell on the way home, because I was craving a beef Crunch Wrap Supreme, my favorite. 
And then, life. 
Life just went on, as it always seems to do. Although my world had just stopped for 18 days while I was in that psych ward, and my life had forever changed when they diagnosed me with Bipolar Disorder, life kept going. 
I, however, have struggled to keep going for three solid years. No, I'm not suicidal …

2015 Year in Review.

Wow, it's strange to think that 2015 is over. This year has simultaneously flown by and been incredibly difficult.

Here's 15 things about 2015 I want to remember, starting with number 15 and counting down (though not EXACTLY in the order that I enjoyed them or in the order I cherish them):

15. Sigma Theta Chi. This year marked my last events in social club, which included formal with my wonderful friend Brantly!
14. SING SONG! I finally got to be in the Siggie act, and we WON 1st place! Woohoo!!
13. All the little things. Trips to sonic with friends. Walking Nugget around the Lunsford trail with Taylor or Savannah or Gaby. Late night trips to Whataburger. Midnight worship. Church. A beautiful sunset. So many things, too many to count. They all made this year more beautiful.
12. Getting to know new friends. Among them, new friends in Seekers (Gaby, Lindsay, Audrey, Lyla, Hannah, Paden, and Taylor) who are all tremendously talented. Gaby was my accountability buddy in Seekers, a…