Everything you want is on the other side of fear…

I am fully aware just now neglectful of this blog I am but with an apparent short attention span and a full-time job as a reporter, it can be a challenge to want to sit and write some more outside of what I do for my job. 

Anyway, it’s been five months (yes, five months, O-M-G!) since I’ve posted anything and quite frankly, a lot has happened, in a sense.

So two months after my last post something incredible happened. I was given a second chance at a relationship that I was really hoping and praying wasn’t the end of it for good the first time.

Now look, I’m sure there are some people reading this wondering was this relationship really worth a second chance? If there’s anything useful and important I learned in life it’s to not worry about what others think — especially when it comes to YOUR relationship. On the other hand, I do believe that not all relationships are meant to work out (i.e. my previous relationship during high school and part of college) but, looking back now, I’m pretty sure that was doomed from the beginning, I just didn’t see the signs. But, I certainly don’t regret that relationship because it taught me about love — and the things that come with it — what I should strive for in my next relationship, what I will accept and won’t settle for etc. But this relationship I’m in now, I knew it was different. I’ve known that since the moment I met him.

It’s funny, and kind of bizarre — we met at work not even two years ago but we actually went to the same college at Central Michigan University for all four years before that. We just never met during that time. It seems weird to me on the one hand that it has been such a short time since we’ve known each other because I feel like I have known him for much longer.

Now let me tell you — up until a certain age I think I believed in love at first sight. But then, as time went on I thought, ‘there’s no way that’s possible. In fact, people who think that are out of their mind,’ but — at 27-years-old now, I am beginning to change my mind again. I’m not sure if it’s that I actually believe in love at first sight but, I do think that two people can meet and just have a special instant connection. Something else at first sight.
I feel kind of scared — OK, I feel absolutely terrified to even be sharing/revealing this but — I do believe in that special connection and I feel as though I am experiencing it currently. I say I feel terrified because, it’s a new thing for me. I’m not saying that with my last boyfriend I didn’t feel it but, let’s be real — that was young love (yes, I was in love with him some years ago) and now I am a grown adult — a lot has changed about not only myself personally but how I feel towards relationships, love and even fear.

I am also fearful for another reason but, I’m coming to realize that fear really doesn’t have a spot in my life. People get scared all of the time about different things but do they let it hold them back? NO. Or, you know, they try their best to not let it hold them back, which is something I am currently in the process of working on. I am fearful because what if the feeling isn’t reciprocated? I am not saying that’s the case — and definitely not limiting that feeling to just my relationship — but for anyone out there. I know where my relationship stands, however, I can’t help but feel a different kind of happy, go-lucky, giddy feeling than the same feeling I felt when I dated my previous boyfriend. I think part of it might be because back then I was young therefore a bit naive, and didn’t know any better. Well, now I am older and certainly know better, or, like to think I do anyway. I guess what it comes down to is, I think I am trying to shift the focus of who thinks what of how I feel to others — rather than myself. Even though in reality, it’s me who I am worried about I feel. It’s not that I am not confident in how I feel, but, on the other hand, am I crazy for feeling this way so fast? Of course, while I really cannot compare my relationship to any other as no two relationships are the same, (and I need to quit trying to compare mine to others) I have considered others’ relationships and for them, to me, it seems like they have that feeling I do only they’re not questioning it like I am. They’re just going with it. And for me, that’s much easier said than done.

Like I said, it’s not because I don’t actually feel it. I do. I have this intense feeling of “fondness” if you will, toward my relationship but I think maybe I am feeling it too fast, too soon. Of course no one but myself and my boyfriend can be the judge of that, but, I do look to others because I simply admire their relationships. Take my parents for example — they’re high school sweethearts.

When I dated my former boyfriend I had long assumed and hoped that’s what our relationship would be. It didn’t up being the case of course, which, for the both of us ultimately was the best thing for us, but, the me now wants that same kind of love my parents share.

Love — yes I said it. I love love. I really do. And it is because of not only my parents, but Disney fairy tale cartoons, too. Call me cliche, call me cheesy, but I have always been one of those girls who idolized the princess and prince charming ending up happily-ever-after. Although, side note: If you’re an adult watching Disney movies then you can see just how truly barbaric some of the story lines are. I mean, a prince “rescuing” the princess a.k.a. damsel in distress?

OK, not my point. My point is, aside from the somewhat outdated story lines, it’s the elements behind it. Cinderella, for example, while she was “rescued” from her evil stepmother and stepsisters, she wound up living happily-ever-after with her prince. Now of course, this is modern day, and reality of course, not some scripted cartoon movie, and relationships don’t always mean a happily-ever-after. That’s not to say people won’t stay together forever, but rather, relationships “aren’t always rainbows and butterflies.” (Cue: Maroon 5, for those of you who caught that reference.)

Relationships take work. They take patience. Kindness. Understanding. Everything. And I am beyond grateful and can’t thank God enough for allowing me this second chance at this relationship I’m in now. For quite some time after my former relationship, even sporadically until now, I have carried that emotional baggage around with me. Eventually, I knew I had to let that baggage go in order to fully accept and actually be present in this current relationship. Of course, while I let go of that baggage it seemed I picked up new “baggage,” if you will, only this time — about the future.

Obviously I or anyone else has no idea what the future holds but for some reason, I am determined to try and figure it out. Never in my life have I wondered, or worried, so much about the future. I guess maybe it’s in part because I have gotten older and will only continue to get older, just like everyone else because it’s a part of life. It’s inevitable. But, on the other hand, I feel like that’s just maybe who I am as a person — a worrier? But why? That remains a mystery to me.

I’ve been trying hard to be more present and focused on the present and it’s a process. I started, sort of, a hand-written journal that I truly hope I can utilize regularly to my benefit. It’s part hand-written, part “vision” journal, meaning I am cutting pictures and images out of old magazines for both short-and-long-term goals I hope to achieve.

The journal is a work-in-progress, much like (me) trying to regain focus on the present outside of my journal and being grateful for the now of my life because well, it’s pretty damn great. But I will say this, as another potential reason for my worry about the future: I don’t want history to repeat itself.

I know, I’m 27-years-old (Eek! That’s still so weird to me sometimes), a grown adult, and really I only have the one other relationship (that was significant and had a major impact on my life) to compare things to, but, that heartbreak was hard. Of course, all heart breaks are hard (even if it was ultimately a blessing in disguise), and everyone handles them differently. For me, as a woman who’s always been an emotional being (for whatever reason), it was one of the more difficult things in life to go through. It obviously wasn’t the worst thing I’ve ever experienced as I consider the death of a loved one or pet, or something along those lines, as the worst things I’ve had to experience in life. But anyway — the heartbreak was difficult then, and even during my last “heartbreak” in this relationship during the two months we broke up and hardly spoke, were awful. I really wasn’t sure and didn’t entertain the idea too much if we would get back together. I had hoped, obviously, as our relationship just hadn’t felt like it should have ended there and thank God and my boyfriend, and myself too, for realizing the feelings were still there and that in order to move on some things would need to change to make the relationship even better the second time around.

And let me tell you, they are. When he and I met up for the first time after two months it wasn’t at all awkward like I kept telling myself and my friends it would be. I was terrified to see him in person because I honestly had no idea what to expect. He was simply just “coming over to visit.” But, it turned out what I could have only dreamed of and from there it’s been much different, but certainly in a good way.

My point is, there’s a lot of unknowns in life. And fear is a thing that never goes away. But, we find a way to overcome the fear and accept the unknowns as they make their presence known in our lives. And as for feelings, which in this particular case mine are tied to fear — I can’t let it. I can’t and shouldn’t feel scared, or sorry for the way I feel. I can only hope and pray for in the future for things to be equal among us.

For now, I will continue my relationship, and life in general, as it is. Enjoy each moment and it comes and try not to stress out so much about the future. Be confident in where I am in life now. And that goes to you, too, whoever is reading this post.

Until next time…

— Anamaria

I want to be your favorite hello and your hardest goodbye…

Call me crazy but, I love love love.

I’ve been in love before, and I hope, pray and know I’ll fall in love again. But, when?

Here I am X amount of years after a relationship wondering when and where, not if, I’ll meet my Mr. Right a.k.a. Prince Charming.

You’re probably wondering why I’m even rambling about this on a Monday night at 11 o clock. LOL! Just thinking about my weekend encounter when I tried to TALK to another human being of the opposite sex. 😂 LMAO! But more about that later on in this post…

Okay, so maybe I sound like some young, naive girl who still believes in “fairytales”. But that’s just it–I don’t still believe in fairytales. I just have and always will. Quite frankly, I don’t see what’s wrong with that?

Moving to a new state a few months ago I thought the dating scene might improve, meaning I’d have more selection and variety or, that I would just be more willing and able to give chances to people, without regard to where I meet them (online or in person). I come across men when I’m out at the bars back home and come across men all the time when I’m out in the field working; although the latter isn’t the appropriate time or place to meet eligible bachelor men. Lol. Anyway…

But, while meeting a cute guy at the bar and trying my best not to be awkward, I can’t help but think it’s his loss if he thinks in the end my awkwardness is too weird/a turn off anyway. Hell, maybe he is just interested in a hook-up, which, sure, on one hand doesn’t sound all that bad if I was still in college and in general, younger, but, at 26 I’m just no longer into it. Or maybe I just need to brush on my skills on how to flirt and not be awkward. LOL! HALP!

But look, I am a real adult now. Or you know, am for the most part. 😂 I live in a completely different town and state than where I grew up my whole life. I have a cute little two bedroom apartment that feels like home (to the best of my ability), and, am finally doing what I’ve always wanted to do–be a reporter. Thankfully I’m in love with my job but, I don’t want that to be my whole life.

Like I said above, and I’ve said before: I love love. I am fortunate to have experienced it once before, despite it not working out in the end, because I am a firm believer, and I think probably was before experiencing it myself–it’s better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all. I don’t know whether it’s based solely on personal experience or from me watching fairytale movies whether they’re Disney or adult rom-coms, but, I definitely do believe love exists and believe I, too, am meant to fall in love again, at least (hopefully) once more.

Before I fell in love for my first time when I was 17 I thought people could only fall in love once. And I think a part of me thought that because I thought my (then) boyfriend and I would get that “happily-ever-after” I had always dreamed of. But when we broke up, and at that (still somewhat young) age, I wasn’t able yet to recognize that everything happens for a reason. Yes, it broke my heart and I was devastated, and didn’t think I would be able to love again or move on at the time–but, as time went on and I got older, I realized not just my life but, any person in general who has had their heart broken, has so much more to gain and learn about themselves and life in general in the “healing” and “moving on” process.

I didn’t see it at first at the time as I truly thought my world and life as I knew it was over but, I am thankful and grateful for having been able to love and experienced my own heartbreak for I would not be the woman I am today–the woman I was meant to be–without having experienced it.

But, flash forward to now–here I am at 26 years old, more than ready to fall in love again. I hope to not experience heartbreak again but should life have it happen that way then I accept it. Plus, I know heartbreak can come in forms beyond just love, and thankfully based on my past experience I can now accept it better should it happen again.

But at my age and my status in life–living and working in a completely new area–where is one to find a nice, single, decent guy?

I’m sure some people reading this think I’m being too picky. And sure, maybe I am. But, I believe so deeply and passionately about love, that I want to date, hell–hopefully marry–someone who feels just the same. Love is much too precious to me to be thrown around so casually. I don’t despise people who throw the word around loosely but, I personally wouldn’t throw it around loosely at my age and in this day. Because like I said, I was able to experience love firsthand myself at once before. And the age I was doesn’t affect my feelings and belief towards it. Some people may shake their head in disbelief that I could feel such a way at 17 but, as someone whose own parents are high school sweethearts and got married when they were that age, I think it’s perfectly fine and acceptable for me to feel and think the way I do.

And while I haven’t yet found that special someone, that doesn’t go to say I haven’t tried. Like I mentioned above, I’ve tried “meeting” people out at the bar–I.e. Us both tips-ily (if that was a real word, lol) flirting or simply talking with one another but, it didn’t extend beyond a casual exchange of numbers and one polite follow up text the next day.

And then of course there’s the whole world of online dating. Where do I begin with that? I am a supporter of online dating and definitely don’t see anything weird, or “abnormal” about it like some others may view it as. But, to be honest, I think my in-person awkwardness translates to the online world, too, lol. Again, some may say I’m being too picky but, I can’t imagine not setting the bar high enough and ending up with a “Barney”. (See: Clueless) I for one value education dearly, and while I understand and accept some people go on to live fantastic, perfectly great lives without a college degree, etc. I want someone who can atleast appreciate the effort of trying. If there’s another thing I learned in life it’s that nothing worth having comes easy. I am thankful to have parents who showed me that hard work will allow you to be successful and provide an opportunity for growth. I am proud of myself, and for both my parents and my entire family, for always being my cheerleaders along the way, pushing my to finish college strong, or any goal for that matter, regardless of how long it took–like to graduate. (I took an extra 5th year but, I finished)

I want to date someone who has that same motivation and determination I did and do, whether or not there’s a group of cheerleaders behind him. But of course, I do hope he does have a great support system, because that’s just as important to me.

You see, I am close with my family. I love my family and truly can’t imagine calling any other group of people my family. I am blessed and fortunate enough to be the youngest of six kids and have several nieces, nephews, great-nieces, etc. And that’s another huge thing for me when looking for Mr. Right, a.k.a. my Prince Charming–they have to value family as much as me. The truth is, if you don’t have family at the end of the day, who else can you lean and rely on?

I could go on and on about the qualities I look for in a guy. Sure, like I said, some people may say I’m too picky or this, this or that, but, at the end of the day I am happy with my life, working my dream job, and experiencing this new town and city. Obviously I would love to find a companion to share in this crazy adventure with me but, until then I’ll enjoy the ride solo.

So 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. 🙂

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

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

Where there is love there is life…

It’s 11 o’clock on a Thursday night, thinking I should be exhausted from a long work week, but am not.

This week’s been super short due to having Monday off as well as getting an early release yesterday and the whole day off today due to the weather. So, today I decided to be somewhat productive–after, of course, I got caught up on my TV shows I’ve missed these past few weeks.

So, my hair wand styling tool decided to quit working so naturally I had to go buy a new one, right? Which I did, at Sally’s, and then after that I went to Target to print off some pictures to update the ones currently in my frame on the wall. But you know when it comes to Target it’s never just one thing you LEAVE Target with. No, no, no. I also had on my list of things to buy: nylons, a candle to go in my new candle holder I bought in Nashville and deodorant. But, did I leave with just that? Of course not. Why? Because Target is a trap and that’s what they do to you–make you leave its store with not only what you actually came for but a lot more as well. And sometimes you don’t even leave with what you came for–you just leave with 50 other things you definitely DIDN’T need. But, that’s another story, and not the point of this one.

So, I get home to put away my new stuff only to realize that I must organize some other things in my room to make space for the new stuff. As I start moving things around and dusting, I realize just how much stuff I have. Random stuff. Random stuff I don’t need, but, find myself always clinging on to because deep down I think I might be a hoarder. Not literally but, sometimes I wonder…

Anyway… So I am cleaning through stuff and putting a lot of stuff in a bag for my aunt to donate to the food bank she works at. Among the stuff I am going through I come across some old memories. Memories that made me smile and others that made me wish some people were still alive and physically here. But, more importantly, it made me realize how much I have changed and grown from a young girl to a young woman–someone, in my opinion, who is much different than the girl who used to wear white eyeliner and had those two pieces of random hair hanging in front of her face.

Oh yes, I was that girl. I used to be. Can you even picture it? (I have pictures to prove it, but, I’ll leave it to you using your imagination, lol) But, my point is, is that the woman who I I pictured myself to be one day when I grew up, isn’t who I am. It’s not an entirely bad thing, and now that I am older I understand “everything happening for a reason”, but, I am wondering just how long it will take me to understand the reasoning for why my life is actually the way it is versus how I imagined it to me.

I’m not saying I have a bad life, because I definitely do not. But, the younger me pictured the NOW me to be working my dream career as a journalist, being married and living with my future husband… Having and living that happily-ever-after. But guess what? That’s not my current reality. It’s definitely still my dream, but, I’m wondering why it hasn’t come true yet. Like, why did my life plan/goals not play how exactly how I wanted them to? I’ll never know.

love

So, focusing on the present, I still want to somehow make that dream of mine come true. Sure, it won’t match the timeline I had envisioned for myself when I was younger but if there’s another thing I learned in addition to everything happening for a reason, it’s my soulmate is out there some where. Probably sounds pretty crazy to some but, I firmly believe that the “man of my dreams” is out there just waiting to meet me.

Okay, so I sound like a cheesy romance movie or trashy romance novel but, you know what, I not only believe in love but, I LOVE love. Is it just me, or…?

I love the idea of love, the meaning of it and how it affects people–and not just romantically. It’s an amazing thing to experience by giving and receiving it.

Well, I for one am all about giving it. Now, if only I could find a man who would be willing to receive it and give it back…

Alright, so I’ve mentioned in previous blog posts that I’ve been playing the single field for some time now and while in college there were countless possibilities of eligible bachelors, I spent my time focused on school, other things.

Looking back now, I think maybe in the back of my mind I thought my then ex and I might get back together, or, maybe I just felt like trying to find a man on a college campus was asking for too much (and I was being too picky), but, for whatever reason, I just didn’t hook anyone with my bait, if you will. LOL. Well, flash forward to over a year and a half since I’ve graduated and moved back to my hometown, trying to land a full-time job in my field, I wonder, now where am I supposed to meet people?

Through mutual friends? The bar? Online? By chance?

I’ve experienced all of the above but, none have panned out… Which, makes me wonder and question–Am I seriously going to be single forever?

Okay, so it sounds a little crazy but, try to understand that I’ve been single for a loooong time. Okay, so sure, there are people out there who live their whole lives being single and are totally fine. And people who haven’t been single their whole lives but still have been single longer than me.

But, like I mentioned above, I love love, and I want love. I want that head-over-heels kind of love, and I truly believe I’m meant to experience and have it. Others might not agree but, it doesn’t matter what they think–only what I do.

But I wonder after trying to meet men through mutual friends, at the bar, and by chance, where in the world AM I supposed to meet them?

Is there some way/somewhere I completely missing, simply just having bad luck or destined to be single for forever?

Now, there are a couple things I must share in regards to online dating, as it was brought to my attention when one of my friends posted it to her social media last week. She made some very valid points and I agreed with almost all of them. But, then it got me to thinking… Maybe that’s what was deterring men from me and vice versa? Not to say that’s what the case was for her though, no.

But the points she made about online dating were as follows (not exact word-for-word) and they just made me think, WOW! BAM! Nailed it on the head…

Disclaimer: I am in no way dissing online dating. I’ve been on sites in the past and am on some right now.

  1. A first impression is everything. Before you even message me you better have some clear, solid pictures of YOU. I don’t mind if you have some pictures with your friends, as I do too, but, if you don’t have at least one, preferably two, pictures that clearly shows who you are then… Don’t waste your time messaging me. Online dating is hard enough and I don’t want to spend the extra time trying to figure out what man is you. Also, if you have a girl in your picture and you don’t say who she is then… Yeah, sorry, a turn off for me. AND also… The weird blur outs or “stickers” over people’s faces too=WEIRD. Or if you don’t have ANY pictures=EVEN WEIRDER. But anyway, moving on…
  2. Physical appearances aren’t and shouldn’t be everything but, let’s face it, it does play a role in relationships, and especially in the online dating world. That sounds conceited but, let’s be honest. I can only assume how many guys passed over me because physically I wasn’t their type. Sure, it sucks, but, I know there are countless more guys out there to pick from who may just find me to be exactly what they’re looking for. But, same goes for me. If I don’t think there is a physical attraction, then it will be hard for me to pursue the relationship further. And I don’t just say this in regards to online dating–even in real life there’s got to be some chemistry and physical attraction to the other person. Okay, so maybe I sound like a total conceited bitch, but, I know other people out there think this same thing but won’t say it. It’s fine. Moving on…
  3. If someone messages me and I don’t respond, or if I message someone and they don’t respond–what to do=MOVE ON. I’ve had a handful of guys message me, only to look at their profile afterward and see there is no way we have anything in common. I just think it’s weird, sorry. Like I mentioned above–there are plenty of people to pick from so move on to the next one in hopes that person will message you back.
  4. If you’re going to take a chance and message me (hoping you at least skimmed my profile but if not, well then) then at least have it be something substantial. For example, I got a message from someone the other day whose profile picture was a MEME and it was his ONE AND ONLY picture asking if I had Snapchat. I read it and thought, “I sure do, but, in no way in hell am I going to give you my username. Creep!” Yeah, I deleted that message real quick. Like I said, have it be something that can keep a conversation going.
  5. I will never understand why guys insist on asking/saying “how can someone as pretty/beautiful as you be single?” I don’t know, pal. YOU tell me… Enlighten me, if you will.

So, there’s definitely more I could say about online dating, but, I’m sure some people are reading this and are thinking, “Well, gee, it’s no wonder you’re still single.” Yeah, yeah, I get it. Maybe I’m being way too harsh but, if there’s something I learned from my first serious relationship is that I refuse to settle–in anything in life, but, especially in love.

…Of course I have people tell me all the time how my “Mr. Right”/”Prince Charming” will come along in my life when I’m not looking and when I least expect it but, um, hello? I’ve been trying to live that life for the past how many years and here I am… STILL SINGLE.

It’s been partly by choice, but, more recently, I’ve realized I’m ready to date someone for the long-run and maybe, hopefully, settle down with him someday. Of course, that alone probably deters some guys from dating me as not all guys are ready to settle down or are even looking for something long-term. Which is fine, too. Hell, I’d be happy if someone just wanted to take me out on a date or, simply just hang out and enjoy my company. Sure, I have amazing friends and family who are great company themselves, but, I also would like a male companion as company too.

Which begs the question… Where is a 25-year-old single woman supposed to meet people?

I’m still on the online dating scene, but, nothing seriously potential from it yet.

I’ve tried meeting people at the bar and well, everyone’s inhibitions go out the door and we all know how that goes…

I’ve met people through mutual friends and it just doesn’t pan out.

So single men and women… Where do the single people of the universe meet the others? And, how I do approach a single man?

I blog about this not just for the sake of myself, but, because I know there are other single people out there, possibly reading this, and probably (or potentially) thinking these same things.

And, well, if there aren’t, then pardon me, keep moving along…

My point of this blog is to share that I am open and ready for a relationship–but more importantly, love. As an example, my parents are high school sweethearts and have been married 40+ years and I want a love like that–that lasts forever, through good times and tough.

So, while I continue waiting for my Mr. Right/Prince Charming to come along in my life (or continue seeking him out in the form of meeting at a bar, through mutual friends, online, etc), I’ll be living my life same as always: blogging, working on reaching my ultimate career goal of becoming a reporter, eating Chipotle, drinking Starbucks and watching too much Law and Order: SVU.

I mean, if that doesn’t rock some guy’s socks off, then, I don’t know what will. LOL! 😉

Until next time…

XO,
Ana

19 Kids and Counting? How about zero kids and counting…

I don’t like kids.

There, I said it.

Now, before you get your boxers in a bunch and write me off as the world’s meanest woman. Hear me out.

It’s not that I necessarily think kids are the most awful things to exist on the planet (okay, maybe sometimes)–after all, I myself, and the rest of you, used to be kids once. But, I just don’t think they’re for everyone.

I have said for as long as I can remember that I simply don’t want kids. I’ve thrown out every possible reason why and people always seem to give me this judgmental stare. Like, how dare I not want kids when I am a woman and *most* have children. (I say most loosely because, well, there are a ton of women in the world and I am not sure exactly just how many have children already or are expecting.)

I then get asked why not, and how being a mother is the greatest thing in the world, all the while I am looking back at said person just waiting for her to be done talking.

Sounds terrible, right? But seriously, bear with me. I promise I am not a total baby hater, or mother hater for that matter.

I am simply at a time in my life where a) I am still young (even though I may say otherwise from time to time) b) I still live at home (that post-college life) c) I am SINGLE! (Pretty big one right there… Although, not saying that just because I get into a relationship I am automatically going to have kids) d) I am not yet fully established in my career and as a single woman, my main focus is and has been, my career.

I have always told myself that my career will be my number one focus until I achieve it. Now obviously once I achieve it and move on to the next chapter of my life (i.e. a relationship and-maybe kids) then that will be just as main of a focus in my life as my career.

But seriously, I don’t get why I get the stink-eye or other weird look when I say I don’t want kids. Of course, people tell me all the time that I could change my mind, and I assure them “NO” but, I’ve been thinking lately, that maybe–just maybe–one day I could change my mind. This new thought came to my mind after I found out one of my brothers and his wife are expecting a baby boy come July. I thought maybe someday I want my nieces and nephews (along with my new future nephew) to have a cousin(s) to play and grow up with. Of course, there are already cousins to play with, but also the fact the other women in my family–like my sisters and niece–have had their own kids as well. The point is, I just got to thinking and thought, maybe I shouldn’t write kids off completely.

Now I must explain, part of the reason I say (literally) “I’m so good” on having kids is because I do have so many nieces and nephews already–I am surrounded by kids. I mean, I have been an aunt since I was TWO AND A HALF YEARS OLD! TWO AND A HALF! And ever since then they’ve just kept on coming, lol. Plus, being the youngest of my five siblings in addition to having so many nieces and nephews, I just never felt like I was missing out on a ton by declaring I don’t want kids.

But, like I said, whenever I say I don’t want them it seems like people write me off right then and there. Sure, maybe I say it a little harshly but, in my opinion, not everyone has to have kids. In fact, I believe some people really SHOULD NOT have kids and yet, there they are–having kids. But that’s a whole different story-blog in itself.

I remember telling my mom one time a month or so ago that as a woman, I shouldn’t feel obligated to have a kid. I feel like society puts this pressure (whether it’s intentional or not) for women to have kids. Plus, not only that, but when we see celebrities like Brangelina adopting kids left and right… Or the Duggars and their 19 kids… Etc. Etc. I can’t help but think some people are influenced by that. However, I am not. I mean, to each their own for how many children they have but IF I ever were to have kids I sure as hell would not want that many. If I had the money like Brangelina then MAYBE, but, NINETEEN like the Duggars–NO WAY! But again, to each their own. My whole thought on kids if you are going to have them–properly take care of them. They need shelter, clothes, food… But most importantly–they need LOVE. What good is the rest of the stuff if it isn’t in addition to being loved?

I think what bothers me is that there are people out there who believe that just because they have a kid (or kids) that they can and are equipped to take care of them.

Um, I’m sorry, but NO.

That is not always the case.

As a woman who was adopted, I thank my birth mother for making the tough, yet smart decision to place me for adoption so someone else could give me all the things she couldn’t (like food, a good home, stability, education, etc.).

But, again, that’s another story in itself.

My point is, women (and even men) shouldn’t feel like they need to have a child(ren) just because everyone else in society does or because they get pressure from family and friends. I am a believer that kids just aren’t for everyone and that is fine. And if it’s not fine with you well then, sorry I’m not sorry.

My other point is, is that maybe–MAYBE–I could see myself having a kid one day.* (*Far future, not any time soon.) Plus, people always tell me to “never say never” and you know, maybe they’re right. But, if I do decide to have kids one day then it will be when I am READY. Not just for the sake of it–not just for shits and giggles.

So just a friendly reminder that the next time you want to write someone off as a bitch, or horrible person, or whatever, for not wanting or not yet having kids, consider WHY they might not want one. (Just a thought)

I know I’ve been adamant, and well, even now as I type this, that motherhood isn’t for me–but maybe, just maybe, I may change my mind in the future. Because even though quite frankly, other people’s (outside of my family and close friends) kids annoy the shit out of me (sorry if that’s blunt but, it’s how I feel), I do love my nieces and nephews and see the joy they bring to my siblings (their parents).

So, here’s to the future… Trying to not remain so dead set on never having kids, ever, but, being open to the possibility, should one day I have all of my ducks in a row–i.e. dream job, dream house, dream man, etc… Or at least, you know, a decent job, house and man to start and raise a family with. 😉 God only knows what my future holds… Well, and me too technically. But anyway…

Until next time…

XO,
Ana

The best way to predict your future is to create it…

I got dolled up for NYE 2016 knowing already I was going to be one overdressed woman. But, as one of my older sisters said, you can never be too formal for NYE. So, I went with it and chose the dress that was not only comfortable but that I felt like a princess in. And I was very much treated like a princess that day as my other older sister was nice enough to curl my hair… Since whenever I try to do it, like today, it turns out nothing like it should. HA! Plus I had the sparkling jewelry, shoes and purse to match. 🙂

Anyway, so the plan was to meet up at a friend’s apartment beforehand and later head to Dublin in EL. Well, we thought we left at an appropriate time but it turns out we didn’t. The line wasn’t even that long but bouncer at the door told us they were at capacity.

My friends and I peered in the windows of the building and it seemed nowhere near capacity. We questioned whether we should bear the cold longer than we already had until we heard no new people would be let in until HALFTIME of the big game. After that we weighed our options and low-and-behold, ended up at Rick’s across the street.

Of course my natural reaction was horror, as I had been there ONCE before, and that in my opinion was enough. But, I wanted to stay with my friends and didn’t want to be too much of a negative Nancy so I went with it. And later in the night and the following day, I realized just how much fun I had. It wasn’t my top place to ring in the New Year 2016, but, in the end I was just happy with WHO I was with and NOT where I was at.

I am grateful to have rung in another year with my best friends. It’s funny, my brother, mom and I were having a conversation about something the other day and my brother asked, “You and your friends never fight?” It may seem weird but my response was, “No.” Sure, we may get on each other’s nerves at time but, we never full on ever argue or anything like that. To some that may not seem “normal” but, you know what, I’m perfectly content with not being normal.

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Cassie, Me & Sarahann on NYE 2016

Our friendship started back (now this year) 13 years ago… And how we all have remained this close–to be honest, I am not sure–but damnit, I’m glad and grateful we did. We all went to different colleges, but our friendship never once changed. We dated people, got involved on campus and became busy with things and people outside of our friendship but once we were all back in town it was as if nothing ever changed. And to this day, it still hasn’t. I feel very fortunate that it hasn’t either. I don’t think most people can say that about a friendship.

Of course on NYE our group was missing a few, but, they were with us in spirit–off celebrating elsewhere–but it doesn’t matter if we’re physically together everyday, we can still pick up right where we left out.

Now I will be honest, there are times where I do worry that some day, in the far, far future we may drift apart–not because we necessarily want to but because we will grow older and other priorities will begin to take focus in life. But, if there’s anything I learned in life it’s to focus on the NOW. Don’t dwell on the past, don’t worry about the future. And I’m going to try my best to do that in 2016.

I’m not sure what the future holds for me this year, or the next, or the year after that, but one thing is for sure–it’ll be what I make of it.

Next week I start my internship at HOMTV, which I am SUPER excited about. As some may or may not know, my previous news job didn’t work out but, it just means the job wasn’t the right fit for me and that my dream job and job that IS MEANT for me is still out there waiting for me. And, I have a feeling this internship will teach me even more to ensure I am well-equipped for my next job afterward.

Now, while of course I am excited about my professional life, I am also super excited about my personal life. It’s been awhile since I’ve dated, like a long while, which, why I am admitting, I have no idea, but, I’ve decided it’s time to step OUTSIDE of my comfort zone and not only take chances–but give chances to people as well. I never know who I may meet who could just be the love of my life. I love love and am a firm believer in it, and believe my “soulmate” is out there. Some people may not believe in soulmates or love and think it’s lame or cheesy that I do but it’s who I am and that’s something that’ll never change.

So, here is to a fresh start, clean slate–whatever you want to call it. I wish whoever is reading this a happy and healthy new year. Know that this year, your life, is what YOU make of it. So be like me, and don’t be afraid to step outside of your comfort zone. I am going to try my best to do so this year and see what comes of it.

Until next time…

XOXO,

Ana