Friday, January 24, 2014

realizing you're a bad person (cool)

Generally, we think of ourselves as ‘good’ right? I don’t want to think of myself as a bad person but the other day I sat back and realized, “Oh my gosh. I AM a bad person.”
It happened so suddenly. I lost my temper at work, thought something mean and it just hit me. It didn’t feel good and I felt gross and then I thought SHIT. Is this who I am now? Someone who gets extremely aggressive road rage, someone who immediately judges another human being the minute I look at them, someone who lacks compassion and grace and patience?
And the craziest part of it all was growing up, I was always the one bullied. A girl tried to set my hair on fire in seventh grade and I still wanted to be her friend. When you’re made fun of in middle school and elementary school and are in marching band in high school, you aren’t really the type of person to make fun of others. You’re too busy writing Holes fanfiction (truth) and singing showtunes (also truth) to care about being mean.
So I just always assumed I didn’t have mean bones in me. But when you’re sitting at work and you realize you’re a mean person, it really really freaks you out.
I started thinking and praying and wondering. And I guess the point is there will always be things about myself I desperately wish to change. Like my round cheeks. Can I just not have them, please, for one moment in my life? But they’ll always be there.
But my heart? My heart is dark, man. And it’s something I want to continually work on. If I recognize that innate goodness is like, not necessarily a thing, that’s good in and of itself, right?
It’s that moment of recognition. That moment of, “I’m not perfect. I’m not even really good. But I want to pursue a life of love, goodness, and helping others.”
It’s that stop-start-stop moment of “Okay. I messed up. I was mean. I thought a bad thought. But it happened and it’s gone and I am going to replace it with good.
I think the danger comes in ignoring these thoughts, or even being complacent. The danger is in thinking I have it all figured out. I don’t and I never will. 
I feel like it’s really, really easy to just grow cold/distant/bitter/sardonic about things. And I don’t want to take myself too seriously or anything too seriously, but also like….I just want to treat people with respect. I want to love my friends and family the way they deserve to be loved, and also just like, people in general. 
So okay. I’m not a “good person.” But I don’t think it’s about trying to be this perfect, “good” human. It’s about living everyday and messing up and then trying to just do your best or whatever. 
And like, I can do that. I think.

Monday, January 13, 2014

a few words/phrases I'm going to try and stop saying

My entire life words have meant so much to me it's kind of crazy. Words create stories which helped my chubby, anxious 11 year old self escape the hell hole that is middle school. Nothing is worse than middle school and I would never ever ever ever ever ever go back there and you can't make me and when I have kids I will completely understand if they want to skip grades 6-8. 

As I get older I have realized something about words; they can be the most beautiful thing in the entire world or they can cause deep, real pain. I'm almost 25 and I'm trying be more careful about my words because there's only so many times you can put your foot in your mouth, only so many times you can say something and immediately regret it, your eyes going wide and in your head repeating "Damn damn damn damn damn."

We will always say things we regret because we are flawed humans, but that doesn't mean I'm not going to try and be better. I made a list of words/phrases I want to stop saying and I know it's not going to be easy but IS LIFE EASY?? NO OKAY.

1. Pussy

Alright, everybody CALM DOWN. This word isn't part of my daily vocabulary but if you tell me you've never said it I would have a hard time believing you. Mostly whenever one of my friends or I have said it, it's in reference to a guy or group of guys at large. Here's how the conversation usually goes:

Friend/me: Ugh, it's so hard to date in LA.
Friend/me: I know right?
Friend/me: Men are such....there's no other word for it...pussies! Like, grow up!

I'm not *proud* of this conversation but it's a pretty common one in general. And I hate myself for using that word and for having this conversation because 1. It's stereotyping and grouping all men together which is incorrect and 2. It's using 'pussy' in a derogatory sense. Because 'pussy' obviously means 1. cats. or 2. vaginas and I'm sorry but both of those are pretty wonderful things. The problem with using 'pussy' as in insult is that you're using a word that is specifically in reference to female genitalia and you're using it to describe someone who is weak, wimpy, and specifically a man who is those things. 

A lot of people might just think I'm being overly defensive. But I don't think I am. There are so many words that are common placeholders in our language that we don't even think about. 

My sister Rebecca brought this to my attention awhile back with using "guys" to address a group of people, regardless of gender. When you say "hey guys" and you're talking to either a mixed gendered group or just females, you're automatically using the word 'guy' as dominant. This seems super nit picky but I mean, it's true. And it makes you think, you know?

2. Bitch

I guess this could be grouped in with 'pussy' but I hate this word so much. I hate it because again, we often use to to describe females or a male who is "weak" or "acting like a little bitch." I don't know one person who enjoys being called a bitch. And if you do, well that's your thang homie. I just know personally, I use this word too often and I hate it and I'm just gonna stop on my own account. I guess it rubs me the wrong way too because I LOVE Beyonce and she has that song where she sings "Bow Down Bitches" and that honestly bothers me so much. Because Beyonce says she's an advocate for female rights and brands herself as a feminist, but she's literally singing a song telling other women to BOW DOWN to her. She's not singing "stand up next to me" she's telling them to bow down. When we 'bow down' to something it is most commonly seen as an act of worship. I LOVE Beyonce but I'm sorry, I'm not going to bow down to her and especially when she calls me a bitch.

3. I'm Going to Kill Myself

This is probably my most over-used phrase and I'm truly ashamed. I have been personally affected by suicide and there is nothing funny or casual about it. It is sickening and has hurt my family deeply and I hate that I can so easily toss around this phrase because it's gross. I don't get offended when other people say it, but because of my own experience with this particular topic I just never ever want to say it again.
4. I'm soooo poooor

No, I'm not. I have access to clean water. I'm never hungry, I have a house, I have a car, I have a job. There is no way in any form that I am 'poor' so I need to stop saying this, I need to start being grateful, and I need to start living my life in ways that can help those who actually are poor. It's stupid that I'm so de-sensitized to this and it's no one's fault but my own. 

This post was in no way meant to be a rant or trying to pose as some kind of thesis or me trying to be "smart" - it's just truly what is on my mind and I wanted to write about it so um....yeah. K bye!