Change is inevitable, progress is optional…

So, it’s been a minute since I’ve last blogged.

Okay, so it’s been two months but, I’ve busy with work, a bridal shower, a bachelorette party, my 26th birthday, patiently (okay, not so patiently waiting) for the arrival of my nephew, etc. etc.

Alright, so maybe I haven’t been that busy to where I couldn’t blog but let me tell you, sleep is my number two priority after work. LOL. When I am not working or busy with other commitments you can guarantee I am sleeping or watching ridiculous Lifetime Movie Network movies.

Anyway… Moving along.

So today actually marks the two month anniversary of when I moved into my apartment and then on Saturday it will have been two months since I started my first day at C-T. (That’s The Chronicle-Tribune for those of you who don’t know the abbreviation, lol, because I don’t feel like repeatedly typing it out)

Work has been a learning process–fun, cool, exciting. I still consider myself a rookie because coming in I felt a bit rusty. I had just finished up my internship at HOMTV and yes, I obviously studied journalism and got my degree in it and had my intern at WLNS, etc., but, being back in a print-focused atmosphere was something I was struggling to get a hold of again. Thankfully my co-workers and boss are awesome and have been helping me out along the way. I mean yeah I still have more to learn, and always will, I believe with any job it’s like that, and thankfully I’ve had great mentors along the way.

Of course, while I’m learning a lot and still getting to know the town of Marion, I wouldn’t be being completely honest if I said I didn’t have some challenges along the way. Like for example, after the Fourth of July holiday weekend when I was leaving my cottage to come back I got upset, and quite honestly, it was hard to say my “see you later’s” to my family. My mom saw it firsthand, and as any good mom, she told me everything would be okay. And deep down I knew it would be, but, at that exact moment I didn’t want to leave after having spent an incredible weekend with my whole immediate family, plus my uncle Steve.

Fast forward to this past weekend, and same thing happened. I know, it sounds pathetic, especially being 26-years-old–an adult–living on her own but, it did happen again and, I have no doubt it will happen again until I become more familiar with Marion and meeting friends and having people to hang out with instead of just constantly being by myself in my apartment when I get home from work. Anyway, this time it happened not while I was leaving from home in Michigan to my home here, but rather, leaving Nashville and coming back home to Indiana but wanting to make it all the way back to Michigan for just the night so I could finally meet my nephew Stone.

So Stone was born on Wednesday, July 27, 2016. My sister-in-law, Jamie, went to the hospital early Tuesday morning (like the middle of the night), and my mom called me at 6:30 a.m. to tell me she had so. Of course that was the morning I was scheduled to drive down to Nashville to stay with my old college roommate and friend, Kayla, and see my cousin’s new house and then spend the rest of the weekend celebrating the bride-to-be, Alison, and I was put in a tough spot. Part of me was dying to go home instead so I could be there when he was actually born but, the other part of me wanted to stick to my plan and go on to Nashville because I thought it would be rude if I didn’t. Plus, what ultimately made me choose Nashville over the birth of Stone was that I knew I wouldn’t get to celebrate Alison and her bachelorette party again, but, that Stone would and will always be there when I visit home next. It was still a tough decision for me and as soon as he was actually born and my mom sent me pictures I felt like I was immediately starting to regret making the trip down south. He was more beautiful and perfect than I could have ever imagined. Words couldn’t describe the feelings I had when I saw him (in picture form) for the first time. But, let’s just say I was at out shopping at the mall at the time and definitely started tearing up, in the baby clothes department, looking all kinds of pathetic. LOL.

Fast forward to Tuesday, two days ago, and when I found out I would get to leave early from work I knew I had to make the 2.5 hour drive home to see my nephew. Sure, I will be going home again tomorrow but, I seriously just couldn’t take it any longer. I drove home as fast as I could and when I got to my brother and sister-in-law’s house, I RAN to the front door. (And for those who know me, you know I don’t run for anything–I HATE running, lmao.) I open the door and see Jamie feeding Stone, and I am even more shocked and taken away at how precious, beautiful and perfect he really is. I called Jamie as I was leaving town to tell her I was coming home and wanted to see him and also warned her I would probably cry when I saw him. Thankfully I was able to hold my tears back but I kid you not, every time I look at a picture of him, and even yesterday when I was out shopping for groceries at Meijer but then “somehow” ended up in the baby boy clothes section, I started tearing up. LOL.

I’m sure some of you are probably wondering why I am so emotional over Stone and maybe even some of my family members are thinking back to when their babies were born and how I didn’t act like this. It’s not that I love any of my other nieces and nephews any less or anything like that–I will tell you now that being an aunt is my greatest “gig” yet and I’ve been lucky enough to be one since I was 2.5 years old. But with Stone, it is different. And I will tell you why…

My older brother Adam, is someone, who despite us literally fighting sometimes or him just being a natural big brother and picking on me from time to time in general, is someone I appreciate and look up to. I look up to all of my siblings, yes, and I love them all the same. But, for those of you who know Adam–you know he is, how do I put it? A bit “rough around the edges”, if you will. He’s not perfect by any means but, who is? No one. When he was growing up he wasn’t a horrible teenager but, he wasn’t an angel either. (Love you, Adam) And so of course when he and Jamie told the family at Christmas last year that they were expecting I lost it. Mind you, I had a few glasses of wine in me, lol, but, even to present day, I get emotional thinking about him as a dad. I guess to be honest there were some days, some moments where I thought, “Adam as a dad? Yeah right, not any time soon–more like not for a long time.” And, I think part of me thought this because I had always known him to be the one who likes to have fun, doing whatever it may be. But, after the news broke and time went on, I knew he and Jamie were going to be forced to “grow up” (not saying that they were careless/reckless or anything like that) or rather, “upgrade” to parent status. It was weird to think about, and I would be lying if I said I didn’t have doubts but, at the end of the day, I knew they would make great parents. Like any parents, I imagine (I can’t speak 100% because I myself am not a parent yet), they will make mistakes and deal with Stone acting out as he grows up and gets older but, that’s normal for any family with kids. Seeing Adam transition from the “having fun” guy to dad, is something that’s very sentimental to me. (If that’s the right word to use??) Not that I am not proud of Jamie, or my other siblings with kids, but, this is my big brother, Adam, we’re talking about. It’s just something that’s hard to explain without it coming out wrong so if you’re reading this and taking it the wrong way, I am sorry. It just is something different with Adam being a dad. Even just typing this is making me emotional.

At the end of the day, I love all of my nieces and nephews the same. I hate that they grow up so fast, though, which, is also part of the reason I think I am so obsessed and in love with Stone. That, and we haven’t had a baby boy since… Calvin, I believe, and he’ll be 10 (?) this year. REALLY?! It’s just crazy how fast time goes by and how quickly each one of them grows up. Even Annabelle, who will be 3-years-old in December (OMG, that just hit me… THREE?!), has grown up so fast right before my very eyes. And that’s not to say my nieces and nephews aren’t as fun when they grow up, but, their priorities shift as they get older just like mine did. My niece Madi has two daughters, is engaged… My nephew Drew is in college, has a job… My nephew Zach is a SENIOR in high school and will graduate next year… My niece, Gabi, will be fourteen, WHAT?!… My nephew Max will be THIRTEEN (I think, right? See, I myself am getting too old to remember everyone’s age, LOL) in December AND he now has his own cell phone. I texted him a couple times so far and one time when I texted him asking him if he was watching Big Brother he said “no” and then didn’t really say much to me after that so he must have been too tired to text me too ūüė¶ LOL… My niece Amelia and nephew Calvin will both be 10 in November… My nieces Raelynn and Gigi will both start Kindergarten in the fall… And like I said earlier, Annabelle will be THREE in December. And then my niece, Ashlyn, and her girlfriend are both working and have a place of their own and then my nephew, Corey, and his fiancee have their own place too with their two kids and pets. I mean, they’re all grown up! This is partly why I freaked when I wasn’t there when Stone was born because I there for just about every other birth of my nieces and nephews and to not be able to be there for Stone tore me apart. Even now, living away, it’s hard because I know I don’t get to see him all the time like I did growing up with my other nieces and nephews.

I have to remind myself though that I don’t live that far and can always come home on a weekend if I don’t work, but, living away in general is still taking getting used to. My mom and dad assure me it will be fine, and I know deep down they’re right. It’s just going to take time.

Hopefully soon I will meet people to hang out with and stuff, but, even if not, it’s a part of the growing up process–just like my mom told me. I am an adult now and she said herself, I can do it. I’m thankful to have the best parents in the world who refuse to let me give up when times get tough. They believe in me enough to know that I can work past whatever it is that is thrown my way. So mom, dad–thank you both. Thank you to all of my family for giving me that push I needed to make the move to work my dream job and do what I love most.

I know there will always be challenges here and there in the future, in whatever aspect/stage of life, but, they’re always there behind me.

Until next time…

XO,

Ana

Dreams don’t work unless you do…

Well, I did it.

I not only accepted a job offer that would allow me to do what I love most and have always wanted to do–write and be a reporter–but, I also moved–OUT of state. What? Can you even believe it?

I still can’t.

I’m sitting here on a Friday night, having successfully completed my first week as a reporter for The Chronicle-Tribune. I tell ya, every time I walk towards my building and see the name on the building (AND¬†see my byline in print)¬†I get all tingly inside.

I know, it sounds a tad lame, but, after almost nearly two years of applying to journalism job after journalism job, I was beginning to think I might never get to work in my field. I thought, maybe I would be like most other college graduates where they earned a degree in something specific, but, then did something completely non-related–and not by choice.

After I had my in person interview I gave it a lot of thought and wondered if I could and actually would move away from home. Sure, I lived away for college, but, it was in the SAME state and only ONE hour away. My new home now is just under three, which is actually not quite as far is my cottage is up north, which is nice. But, I remember doing the Disney College Program three years ago and feeling happy on one hand I was working at the happiest place on Earth, but, then having the other part of me feeling like a part of me was missing because I was so far away from my family. And I mean yeah, I knew it wouldn’t be for forever–the program was only a semester long but, to me, it felt like it was going to be forever until I saw them again.

Flash forward three years later, to now, and here I am at just two weeks away from turning 26-years-old, living on my own, and working my dream career as a reporter. I smiled as I typed that because it just still seems surreal. While I am not 100% unpacked and therefore don’t feel 100% absolute settled in, I’ve been doing my best to adjust my life accordingly at my new apartment, my job and the town of Marion in general. And yes, I miss my family and friends like crazy but, honestly, I keep so busy that sometimes I just simply don’t have time to miss them. (Of course I don’t mean that as a bad thing. I always miss them in the back of my mind.)

Let me give you my opinion on the town of Marion…

It’s definitely different than back home. But, like any town across the U.S., it has both good parts and bad parts to it. The good/nice part about it is that it¬†is¬†trying to rebuild itself; it has the huge General Motors factory; and, it has some of the nicest people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. Sure, I’ve also had some “different” encounters, but, it’s what makes this new chapter of my life so interesting. And then there’s the bad–there’s some areas that are really run down, there’s a big heroin and pseudophedrine problem here. But, like I said, this town has good and bad just like any other.

Now, as for my job, even though it’s only been one full week of working at it, I really do enjoy it so far. My boss is awesome, as is my other boss, and my co-workers have been nothing but extremely helpful. It’s definitely a fast-paced job–probably more so than I was actually expecting, but, my boss cares about all of us employees and he even checked in with me today to make sure I was doing alright. Speaking of… I had a story due today for an upcoming Rubber Duck Race and, by accident, I deleted the interview from my phone through voice memos, and, sadly, in this day and age of iPhones, it couldn’t be retrieved. Now of course I did what any good reporter would do and I also wrote information down in my reporter’s notebook, as well as immediately told my boss what happened. He was understanding, and told me to write the article to the best of my ability. I told him I would get right on it, although, a small part of me on the inside was panicking, not thinking I would be able to pull it off. But, I did. And while it was aggravating for me to make a mistake like that so soon in the game, I was proud of myself for overcoming it.

Other than that flub, today and this week in general has been interesting. I say interesting because I can’t really think of a better way to describe it. I don’t mean it to be a bad thing but, the stories I’ve gotten to write have been unique. My first story assignments were about GM celebrating its 60th anniversary today at its Marion plant and the other was about the first performance for the Concert in the Park series. That was really cool because of all the people it brought to it, and the cute elderly couple I had the pleasure of interviewing and talking to. Another story I did was the goat show yesterday evening. Now that one I will tell you, I was¬†super¬†nervous about because I didn’t know anything about goats, let alone a goat show. But, I somehow pulled it off and I think it was a good piece. Which reminds me… A man who participated in the show wanted me to e-mail him a copy. I’ll do that later.

And then of course there was my story today. At the local county jail 34 men and women were baptized. Going into it I had my own personal thoughts about it, but, as a reporter it’s my job to be objective. So I went and interviewed a young woman who had tears in her eyes as she told me about how growing up she had a hard life and wanted to really turn her life around and how she thought getting baptized was a step in the right direction. I couldn’t even begin to imagine what it was like to be in her shoes or any of the other inmates in there. But, deep down, I did hope that their baptisms really do lead them in the right direction. As did the sheriff there–you could tell by the way he interacted with the men and women that he really does care for them, and, he even told me he has high hopes of these individuals turning their lives around.

So as you can see, this week has been a whirlwind. I’m exhausted, and like I said, I’m still not fully unpacked, and, as I was working on unpacking some more before writing this post, I realized I have TOO. MUCH. DAMN. STUFF. Well, okay, so I blamed the small closet and cabinet space and lack of dresser but then I snapped myself back to reality and realized it’s just because I have too much stuff. If you look under my bathroom sink and see all of my Bath and Body Works¬†body washes and hand soaps you would think I was a hoarder, which, maybe I am just a tad. ūüėČ

But anyway… Fun/random fact… My dad was kind enough to buy me a hammer and nails so I could actually be an adult and hang the rest of the stuff he and my grandpa didn’t get to last weekend. LOL. So far I’ve hung TWO things. Woo! Making progress. HAHA!

Other fun facts…

  • I asked my friend Dennis who is originally from Indiana if they return bottles here and he said no, and said if I ask anyone that that they will call me a communist. LOL!
  • I’ve had three people ask me what church I go to–and have one man go out of his way to get me to join his. I appreciated all gestures.
  • The bar I went to last weekend that remind’s me of the Crystal Bar has SALOON doors as their bathroom stalls in the women’s bathroom. I died laughing.
  • Everyone here is SUPER nice–at least, the people I’ve met¬†so far
  • My landlord said I had a neighbor that she thought was a doctor, however, I have seen no sign of ANYONE in the apartment as a piece of paper has been in the door ALL week and it’s been nothing but silence — ALSO, there’s been this car in the SAME spot ALL week as well, with clothes in it, and so no joke, I’m wondering if the person got kidnapped or…. Well…. Something…
  • My one neighbor’s dog downstairs barks at really obnoxious times–like almost every time I am walking up the stairs coming home from work and DOESN’T STOP barking
  • My other neighbor and her two sons are SUPER nice. Her one son was kind enough to help my parents, grandparents and me move stuff into my apartment last weekend
  • I almost hit a cat on my way to work yesterday. I know, awful. I kept thinking that if I¬†had¬†hit it I most certainly would have thrown up. Crisis averted.
  • On my way¬†home¬†from work the other night, a dog ran out in front of me and it made me sad that no one was even remotely close around looking for it ūüė¶ I wanted to bring it home but obviously I wasn’t about to get fined by my apartment landlord, and I didn’t know if it was a nice dog or a mean dog. I do hope it found its way home or that someone else took it in.
  • Yesterday I got to do a phone interview with the country duo, LOCASH, who will be performing at next week’s Concert in the Park. Sidenote: They were SO nice! ūüôā

I could go on and on about the little things I’ve observed/done in the week I’ve been here but, it’s now 11 p.m. and my laundry needs switched over,¬†and¬†I need to get some sleep tonight so I can wake up bright and early to pack and then hit the road back to Michigan tomorrow for the night. And as tired as I’ll be, I am SUPER excited because Cassie and I are going to Taste of Country¬†in the afternoon¬†AND¬†my brother, sister-in-law and niece and nephew are coming to visit from Illinois. It’ll be a quick and bittersweet trip, but, well worth it. Especially since I’ll eventually have to work some weekends–hopefully not my birthday–but, even if I do, it’s okay because, I am doing what I love and practice will only continue to make perfect. ūüôā

So, until next time…

XO,

Ana

If you can find a path with no obstacles, it probably doesn’t lead anywhere…

This week is my last week as a HOMTV rookie reporter.

It’s crazy to think I began this journey back in January and it is now May. When I first started I wasn’t quite sure what to expect but, as time went on, I gained a better understanding based on my own personal experience and through the advice of advanced interns.

While I came in to this internship with some previous newsroom experience, which was helpful, I learned even more throughout my time at HOMTV. I believe the hands-on experience at HOMTV is unparalleled to any other internship in the area.

youthacademy

As I think back to my first day of orientation and meeting the then other 11 interns, I wondered what my relationship with them would be like by the end of the semester. The advanced interns from the fall 2015 semester came to talk to us that night and one shared how our fellow interns would become like family since we would be spending so much time together. At the time I wasn’t sure if I fully believed it, but now, I can say with certainty I do.

While we had some interns leave prior to now, I am so thankful to have met each and every one of them. I couldn’t have asked for a better group to share this experience with this semester. And so I want to give a huge thanks overall to the 11 other interns I started out with, and a special thanks individually to the 5 interns that remain.

Maya: It has been such a pleasure to meet you this semester. You are an extremely hard-working individual, and I truly believe you will go on to do great things in the TV news/sports industry. You have great potential. I thank you, too, for always helping not only me out, but others as well, when needed.

Treasure:¬†Where do I begin? You are one of the funniest and kindest people I’ve had the pleasure to meet this semester. I see great potential in you and believe you too will go far in life. Thank you for always making me laugh and keeping my sanity in check when I at times thought I was losing it.

Brittany:¬†You are such a helpful and kind person. You have been a coworker who is always willing to help others when they need it, and providing laughs as well. You are a hard-working, determined woman who I believe will go far in life as well. You have great potential–not just based on the stories you’ve covered (and kicked ass at), but, but being a great co-worker and team player as well.

Bri:¬†You are someone I see with a bright future ahead of you. It’s been awesome to have experienced this internship with you, and I thank you for always helping¬†me out specifically when it comes to tear down or set up of meetings–like with the cable cords. LOL. But really, you have been a great person to work with over this semester.

Alexis: It has been so great to work alongside you this semester. I feel we connected so well because of our background and interest in print. It has been a pleasure to have met you, and thank you for being such a great co-worker and friend and the many laughs this semester.

While I am eager and excited to see what the future holds for me post-HOMTV, I am sad to be saying goodbye to my fellow rookie interns. Like I said, I wasn’t sure if I would make that close of a bond with them like the advanced interns had talked about but, I did, which is what makes me sad about leaving.

I couldn’t have asked for better people to do this internship with and I thank them all, both the current 5 left and former ones, for making this an experience I won’t forget.

Of course, before ending this post, I must give thanks to the staff at HOMTV as well, for giving me and the other interns the opportunity to do this internship. I have learned so much during my time at HOMTV and it wouldn’t be without the knowledge and training bestowed upon us from everyone there. THANK YOU.

And, of course, a special thank you to our internship coordinator, Brandie, for being so helpful and always pushing us to do our best and help us see our true potential.

So, here’s to my last week and enjoying these next few days before I become an official HOMTV alumni.

Until next time..

XO,

Ana

Forgiving you is my gift to you; moving on is my gift to myself…

Seeds of Growth

It’s officially Monday, and I meant to write this yesterday but sleep and work won so here’s my post now. Although, as exhausted as I am I should be sleeping right now, considering I have to be at work in the morning.

But, Sunday marked something important and prominent in my life that I felt the need to address it and talk about it.

What is this certain something, you ask? It’s the fifth year anniversary of my break-up with my high school sweetheart. Like to the DAY, five years ago. You’re probably wondering why I’m mentioning this event as an anniversary, but, for a lack of better words…

It was five years ago on a Sunday that a phone call would change my life in a way I would have never imagined.

At that point in time, being almost 21 and having dated my then boyfriend for three and a half years, I couldn’t fathom that it was happening to me. I knew break ups happened all the time between people but, after having dated what seemed like literally forever to me, I couldn’t believe it was really happening.

Like, having spent three and a half years of my life with someone who wasn’t just my first love, and friend first, but he was my best friend. Someone I was fortunate enough at the time to have a part of my life.

To be honest, it hadn’t even dawned on me that the 13th of March was the day it was official that we broke up except that Facebook’s Time Hop reminded me. Thanks, Time Hop.

But, after realizing it, and having just had a conversation about it with my best friend, it felt appropriate to talk about it on here and how much my life has changed and how I’ve changed personally, for the better, because of this break-up.

I’ll admit, it is a little strange to think that FIVE years have gone by since that fateful phone call. Of course at the time I was sad, and for quite some time after, not even fully understanding or accepting that we were in fact over. I was hurt. I felt I didn’t deserve it; I thought he was my soulmate. But my, what time can do to a person.

In the past five years I’ve worked on being who I am meant to be.

I finished college, earned my Bachelor of Science degree in journalism. I joined a sorority, Delta Phi Epsilon, and served as the public relations chair in fall 2012. I celebrated two milestone birthdays, 21st and 25th; took my first airplane rides by myself (which, to me was a very big deal the first time I did–I was terrified, haha). I worked different jobs, spent more time with my family and friends; grew closer to my friends. I’ve grown up. I’ve changed in ways I never thought would be possible because when the break-up first happened, and like I said, for awhile afterward, I truly thought I would never move on. And then I remember at one point my one brother telling me I have to accept the fact that I may never talk to or see my old boyfriend again. Of course, that wasn’t entirely true as we talked briefly last November but, that didn’t end on the best of terms so we are back to no longer speaking.

But you know what? I’ve accepted it. It’s okay. I am not opposed to being his friend if he comes around to changing his mind but, I don’t hold it against him. Five years later and I am at that point my life where I can look back on the relationship and be happy. I don’t regret it. Some days I used to, but, I now know everything happens for a reason. So, I am thankful for having had the relationship with him. No, it didn’t work out, but every experience in my life, this one included, helped shape me into the woman I am today.

So, in honor of it having been five years, I’ve decided to write a public letter. No, I’m not going to mail this to him, but, I am writing it not only for my own sake of fully letting go of the past and accepting it, but also in hopes of other women seeing it and realizing they too can move on from a break-up, a heartache, and be happy again. ūüôā

I will admit, it is a little terrifying to put my thoughts like this out there but, at the end of the day it only matters what I think of my thoughts.

To The Boy Who Broke My Heart:

It’s been awhile since I’ve spoken to you. I’m almost certain I saw you out driving where I was out filming for work the other day but I can’t be 100% positive. It looked like you though, as did the truck look like yours. Of course I thought it was strange, only because what were the chances we’d both be in that area at the same time. That, and I was also wondering why you would be on that side of town anyway.

But, enough about that. I want to say I hold no hard feelings toward you. Sure, I wish we could be civil enough to chat–not on daily basis or anything–and to be friends, but, I guess it just isn’t meant to be that way. And that’s okay.

I will admit that for many months, and well, a few years I held both resentment and sadness about us breaking up. After all, you were my first true love, and the truth is, a small part of me will always hold on to that. I used to say I hated you for breaking up with me, but, looking back now, it’s kind of silly to hate someone because they don’t want to be with you anymore/don’t love you anymore. Why would you want to be with someone who doesn’t love you back? I questioned that for a long time and I now know that us breaking up did us both a favor.

When I think back to our relationship, I think of all the memories–both the good and bad. Mostly the good, as I don’t want to live with resentment over the bad times, and I smile. We had some great times and while there are times to this day I wish I could send you a text or call you up to tell you something funny, I thankfully have other people in my life for that. No, we’re no longer part of each other’s life, but, I wish you well.

During the time we dated you taught me a lot about love. I fell in love with you and you fell in love with me in return. You and I were opposites and yes, at times I wasn’t sure if we would date for as long as we did but, indeed we did. When I dated you I truly felt like the luckiest girl in the world. Like a princess. Not to say our relationship was perfect, because ours wasn’t, and no one’s is, but, the good times we had I am so happy I will forever have those to cherish.

I thank you. I thank you for asking me out. Oh, the way you asked me out–Won’t ever forget that. Too funny. You were more than just my boyfriend and first true love, but also my best friend. And of course, you were my first real heartbreak. But, as the saying goes, time heals all wounds. It took a long time, yes, and at times I thought I would never fully get over you–as pathetic as that sounds but boy, am I one determined and strong woman who was finally able to say “goodbye” to that chapter of my life. For the longest time I thought my life was over because we ended but oh how wrong I was. I realized that our relationship was just a chapter in my life, not the whole thing. It is in fact when my life really began.

Now I know you may never see this, and we very well may never talk again, but I do want you to know I wish you well. I’m grown up now and no longer not wish you well. Because, you know, I had to be young and immature by wishing you the worst. That of course was before growing up to be older and wiser. I no longer wish that. Because another thing I learned is that it takes up too much time and energy to hate someone. I have so many hopes, dreams and desires I intend to achieve in my life that I decided and realized I would no longer dwell on the past and think you’re a total jerk for breaking up with me. Like I said earlier, you did us both a favor. But, looking forward, if I ever have kids some day, or even if I am just talking to friends or my family (nieces and nephews) as they get older, I’ll speak fondly of our relationship. We had fights but, I choose to focus on the good of our relationship and for that, I am thankful.

Thank you for loving me, and allowing me to love you back. Thank you for allowing me to be such a special part of your life for three and a half years. Thank you for being a part of my life during those years and being there for me through both the good times and the bad. I wouldn’t have made it through the bad times as easily without your support.

I hope you too can look back at our relationship and not hold resentment toward me. But, should you, that choice is yours. I won’t hold it against you. I truly wish you well and if our paths happen to cross again, whether as acquaintances or friends or whatever, wonderful. But, if not, that’s fine too. Just know, no matter what, you’ll forever hold a special spot in my heart for having been my first love. And that for that I will be forever grateful. Thank you.

Ana

Until next time…

XO,

Ana

Invest in people who invest in you…

investment

Walking into my house with the smell of Kipper lingering in the air isn’t exactly the welcome home I envisioned upon returning from being gone all day.

Thankfully I work at Bath and Body Works and am obsessed with our candles and have countless of them that I lit one right away in hopes of the smell fading. So far, the Kipper is still winning. -_-

And I’m thinking about how I need to allow 12 hours to fast before tomorrow morning since I have to get blood work, etc. done. Because you know, nothing says “Happy Friday” more than that. Ah… Good times. Thankfully I’m heading to visit my best friend after that for the night. Haven’t seen her new place since she’s moved.

Speaking of friends…¬†I got to thinking today how friendship should always be a two-way street. If it’s not then is it really a friendship to begin with?

I tell ya, friendship is something I hold dear to my heart. I consider myself an extremely blessed person for having the friends I do in my life. My closest friendships, especially, have endured some tough times. Sure, we’ve had countless fun times with endless laughter, but, the true test of friendship comes, in my opinion, when you can endure hardships together.

And, I have more than one best friend.

Now, if you ask my brother Tom, he’ll say you can have only one best friend but, I disagree. I consider my group of “best” friends the best for a reason. Some I’ve known since kindergarten, others middle school, junior high, college. While I’ve known some longer than others, to me it isn’t about who I’ve known the longest but, who’s been by my side from the beginning and never left–even when times got tough.

Now I know that’s a cliche, but, it’s a cliche I find to be very applicable to my life. And in recent years, months, I’ve come to realize that while I consider myself to¬†have a decent amount of friends in general, not everyone may consider me one back.

I’ll be the first to admit I am not the perfect friend. I’m human, and I make mistakes and say stupid things. But, I make up for it by being what a friend should be to begin with. Loyal, honest, trustworthy, apologize when necessary, and overall just be a listening ear when there are no words.

But, in general, like I mentioned above, friendship should always be a two-way street. I think when you’re the only one putting time and effort into it, or the other person offers effort when it’s only convenient for him or her, then perhaps it’s time to cut your losses. After all, life’s much too short to spend it on people who only want to be in your life part-time.

parttimefriends

It’s funny how friendships work out though. Or don’t. For example, a prime one… Today, I spent the day “working” with my friend, Melinda, who I just met in January through our internship. We had so much fun together that it honestly didn’t feel like work. And those are the type of friendships and people I value and appreciate having in my life.

We’ve only known each other for just two months now but, after today, I feel like I’ve known her much longer. She is genuinely one of the kindest people I’ve ever met, and, I realized in some ways, we are exactly alike. (Which, to others, I am not sure if that’s a good thing or bad thing, LOL!) But, like I mentioned above, friendship isn’t always about who we’ve known the longest. Sure, I’ve only known her for two months but, she’s someone I’ve come to know as kind, loyal and trustworthy. And also, freaking hilarious! I seriously laughed so hard with her today that I snorted, and I’m sure some people thought I was totally nuts. (Side note: I was getting a little slap happy and acting a little loopy since I am so exhausted and don’t even know how I am still up, writing a blog right now. Oh wait, yes… COFFEE! Coffee for the win!)

Anyway… Some friendships in my life I feel as though I should ween myself off of simply for the fact because I feel they don’t serve me much purpose. Like, I wonder what I am gaining from these individuals? Especially, when they’re the ones who are only in it partially.

I get it, people are busy with their own lives–myself included, but, if someone really wants a friendship to work out, he or she will make the effort to make it work. Now, for some friendships, in my life for example, I don’t¬†need¬†to talk to my friends everyday to know we’re still friends. And I’m sure other people are like that too. To me there’s nothing wrong with that–it just reaffirms my friendship with that person and shows how truly strong our bond is.

longdisffriends.jpg
But, for other friendships, I feel as though more semi-frequent communication/contact with each other is essential. Or, just, nice. But at an appropriate time. Like I also mentioned above earlier, I am not the most perfect friend and I don’t always make the time to touch base with my friends when I should but, thankfully I have wonderful friends and they realize we’re all busy with our own lives sometimes. Other people though, I feel as though they treat a friendship with me, in this case, or in general, a person, and only contact them when it’s convenient for him or her, or, otherwise, when he or she is simply lonely? Bored? Not sure what the right word is but, the bottom line is, it’s not a full investment in the friendship. And that’s just something I can’t get on board with.

Sure, it’s something I myself need to work on because I’m sure I come across this way to some of my friends, and after feeling as though I’ve been treated like this myself, I definitely wouldn’t want others to feel the same way. It’s not a great feeling. So, in honor of it still being considered a “new” year (in my mind anyway–who cares if it’s March, lol) my goal is to better myself as a friend (touch base with my friends more often, listen more carefully) and personally weed out the friendships in my life that I consider dying/don’t really serve me a purpose and say “bye” to them as needed. It’ll suck, but, it’s not the end of the world, and who knows, it may not actually be forever. After all, just like other types of relationships, sometimes friendships just need a break.

partingways

And, also remember, some friendships just aren’t meant to last forever. Same goes for romantic relationships, jobs, etc. I don’t say that to be harsh or a Debby Downer, but, to speak of reality. But, if you do¬†want to make it last forever, or you know, for a long time, then you need to be willing to¬†INVEST¬†in it. It cannot be a one-way street or it will just never work out.

“You get out of it what you put in.”

That above applies to many things in life so, keep it in mind.

Until next time…

XO,

Ana

Never chase love, affection or attention…

Why do we do this?

Both men and women. Boys and girls.

alexandgigi

Trust me, I’ve seen He’s Just Not That Into You, enough to know when a guy is not interested.

And yet, I, like the main character, Gigi, continue “chasing” after these guys like they’re something extremely special and think maybe, just maybe he’ll come to his senses and like me back.

Psh!

WRONG!

But it’s not just me, no. I see it all the time in movies, television–real life.

And I always wonder, why do women do that to themselves, and guys the same?

Like Alex says in the movie, if a guy likes you, he will make it clear. He won’t play “games”.

You’re probably wondering why I am even writing about this, right?

Well, because I believe not only do I deserve the best and shouldn’t be “chasing” after men who clearly aren’t interested, but, neither should other men and women.

I firmly believe in soulmates and so I got to thinking that perhaps it’s not working out with the current men in my life because my soulmate is still out there.

Okay, so it sounds cheesy and not everyone believes in soulmates, but, I do. I believe in that happily-ever-after with the right person… At the right time.

Ah, time. That brings me to my next thought.

Why is everything about timing?

clock

I’ve spent the past few years being single, for the most part enjoying it.

After all, I was and still am young while (currently still) being single and it’s allowed me to not only grow as an individual, but, also made me realize what I will and won’t settle for in a relationship.

But fast forward to the present and I see all these people I know dating, living together, getting engaged and married; having kids. Like, when did that become the thing to do? Am I missing out? Did I miss some memo?

I’m not saying I’m ready right this second to move in with someone or even get engaged right off the bat, but, seeing everyone living this way, it makes me question if I’m right where I should be at this very moment in my life right now.

My point is, while I’m sure the people who are dating each other, living with each other and getting married are (hopefully for the long run) meant to be, what about the rest of us?

I’m not meaning for this to be a pity party, no. I’m just sick and tired of not just myself but other men and women putting themselves out there only to be rejected. Like if you’re not interested in someone, make it clear, lay it out flat. Otherwise, that person is left thinking maybe there could be some spark ignited while that person knows damn well it will never progress to anything more.

Sure, the truth will hurt, but, I’d rather hear the truth and hurt for a little while than be lied to and think in my head something will progress into something more when it really won’t.

telling-the-truth-quotes-7

Besides, isn’t honesty the best policy, anyway? I think it is. I mean sure, people tell white lies every now and then, usually to spare someone’s feelings, but, when it comes to the dating world and men and women, I think it’s important to be up front.

If not, then, you must be into playing games. And I tell ya, after how long I’ve been single, the last thing I have time for is games.

Yes, I am still young, but, like I’ve said, I’ve had the time to think about what I really want out of not just life in general but, in a relationship too. I want someone who’s just as crazy about me as I am about them. I want someone who loves me for me and doesn’t care if I dance like a fool when a good song comes on Pandora, or don’t want to interact with people until I’ve had coffee. Someone who understands it takes me at least two hours to get ready. I can get ready in less than that, but, I like to lolly gag and dance like a fool to Pandora, lol.

I want someone who appreciates my quirks, supports my dream of being a reporter, enjoys big families and doesn’t mind my family’s uniqueness (lol). I want someone who not only enjoys this but, can handle it.

Perhaps I may be asking for too much but, I know there are people out there in the world who ask and have received much more so, really, I don’t think I am asking for too much. But again, maybe I am, hence why I am still single.

In the mean time I am going to continue pursuing my dream of being a reporter–work on my professional life–and, you know, still be on the online dating scene, and I guess the real world dating scene, even if my prospects are just average. Who knows? I told myself earlier this year that this year is the year of taking chances so, I am going to try my best to be even more open when it comes to dating but, at the same time, not just being open for the sake of being open. I gotta draw the line somewhere, right?

Ah, until next time…

XO,

Ana

Lights, Camera… I’m Live?

This blog post is dedicated to my first two (so far, anyway) real flops of doing live reports at HOMTV thus far. One part¬†of me wishes these videos could be deleted from cyberspace forever, but, the other part of me knows that at the end of the internship I’ll be thankful ¬†that I can look back at these and see just how much I grew as a reporter–and laugh some more about it.

reporter3216
Reporter at the March 2, 2016 Environmental Commission meeting

So the first live shot is in Okemos on the bridge on Okemos Road. I think I may have been cued wrong, and I also thought I could wing it¬†without¬†my script, even though my boss told me explicitly it was in fact¬†okay¬†to hold it while on air, and told me to have in my hands, but, I decided to think I could do without it and well, you can watch what happened…

Meridian News Now (February 8, 2016)

And then there was tonight (March 2, 2016)…

Meridian Township’s¬†Environmental Commission¬†meeting… So, the beginning part, before the meeting started wasn’t too bad but, it’s the AFTER the meeting where I am always fumbling over my words and having a deer in the headlights look. (Not cute, by the way–embarrassing, lol)

Environmental Commission meeting

But, before I go, as embarrassing as it is to watch this myself, let alone have other people watch them (and probably laugh/cringe), it’s important for me, like I mentioned above, to see when the future comes how much I’ve grown as a reporter at HOMTV. We’re nearly halfway through the semester so it can only go¬†up¬†from here. Right???

RIGHT.

Plus, I want other reporters out there who may just be starting out (or even experienced ones–after all, no one is perfect)¬†and have their own horror/embarrassing stories to know they’re not alone and that it’s okay to make mistakes. We’re human, and that’s what practice is for. It’ll make us better. So, like people tell me (and I try hard to actually believe), hang in there–you WILL in fact¬†improve! ūüôā

Oh, and one more… The Planning Commission meeting from February, 8, 2016…

Planning Commission meeting

Until next time….

XO,

Ana