Nationalism: pride for one’s country. Is there a point where nationalism turns into barbarianism and blood lust? In my history class, we have been discussing World War II. Germany was a proud country, and Hitler had a strong sense of nationalism which drew people to him. They were blind to his evil; they only saw a man that wanted what he thought was best for their country.
With the death of Osama bin Laden, there seems to be a strong sense of American pride all around the country today. I was on Facebook when I found out about bin Laden’s death. Everyone’s status seemed to be related to this event. The reactions were varied, everything from “God Bless America” to “Fuck you, Osama!” Then I started to notice another trend in the statuses. There seemed to be a growing amount of hatred behind the words on the screen. I am very glad this evil is no longer on our Earth; however I am not going to celebrate the death of another human being.
What is even more disturbing to me is the fact that people are already trying to turn this into a political issue. I have seen so many things today criticizing President Obama. I am just curious as to whom everyone thinks approved the operation to kill bin Laden in the first place? Without Obama’s consent, and his efforts, the mission would have never taken place. It sickens me that people think they are being true, red-blooded Americans by hating President Obama. Personally I can’t see anything less patriotic than bashing your own president.
I don’t believe you have to agree with Obama politically, but seriously, give him his due support and credit. I also believe the men and women that have been serving overseas all of these years deserve much praise and gratitude. I feel like this act finally gives the war in Afghanistan a bit more validity. I will never be a proponent of war, but I was really starting to worry that all of these soldiers were fighting and dying in vain.
I know the death of bin Laden won’t solve everything, but I hope it eases the minds of Americans to some degree. Terror and panic has seeped into the veins of most Americans. Perhaps this death will help purge us of this intense anxiety that we hold. I think we need to stop living in fear, and live with a little optimism. Even though the opinions of many of my fellow Americans seriously worry me, I still have hope that people will eventually open their eyes and their hearts.
I’m proud of my government and military. I’m not going to bash anyone, or glorify a murder. Things are what they are. I am however going to try and live with hope and optimism for a brighter, less bloodthirsty America.
So my question for you: How do you feel about the death of Osama bin Laden? Would you say that you have a strong sense of nationalism? What are your hopes for the future?
Love. It's one of the first words that we all learn. But do we ever really learn what it means? To me, there are so many different kinds of love. I don't think they can all be defined in conventional ways. We all know the standard kinds of love as defined by the Greeks: Storge is the natural occuring love between children and parents. Phileo is the love that occurs between friends. Eros is known as erotic love; what we typically think of occuring in relationships. The last kind of love is Agape, which is love for God. But can these be the only forms of love? Can love really be defined so simply?
I mean, what is love really? Is it a feeling? An emotional response? Is it strictly science? Is it innate, or learned? Do we all feel love at one point, or does it only happen to a few of us? Can we only fall in love once? Or can we fall in love a limitless number of times? Is there really such a thing as a soul mate? Will these questions ever be answered? I don't know, but I do know these questions have been plaguing me lately.
I'm a hopeless romantic by nature, though I try to fight this on a regular basis. I think I fight this as a defense mechanism. If I don't let people get close to me, I can't get hurt. Every single time I try to put this wall up, someone manages to knock it down. Apparently my knees are weaker than I thought. Unfortunately every time this wall has been knocked down I seem to tumble right along with it. It honestly has felt like it's my destiny to be heart broken. Yet once again I find myself letting my walls crumble.
I think I've been hurt so many times in the past because I fall before I've really found love. But my problem is I obviously don't know what love really is. Why can't this be an easy thing to define, at least for me. Maybe others don't struggle with this as much. Currently I'm feeling something for sure, but I don't want to slap a label on it for fear of cheapening it, or screwing it up. I know I'm feeling intense happiness, like none before. I can't control my body at times, I honestly catch myself smiling for no reason, and forgetting to breathe. I don't know what to call it, but I like the way it feels.
But at the same time, it kind of scares me. I don't enjoy feeling vulnerable, and not being able to control my body and my emotions around this person makes me feel about as vulnerable as a person could feel. It's terrifying, yet this person makes me feel so comfortable. It's very contradictory, I know. I just don't know any other ways to describe what I'm feeling.
Since we're on the topic of love, where does the line between friendship and something more get drawn? I've recently experienced something with a girl friend of mine that really has be confused. We've not been friends very long, but we've gotten close very quickly. She recently admitted that she has strong feelings for me that aren't strictly platonic. It's just happened so fast I really can't tell if her feelings are legitimate, or if she's mistaking something else for love. I think she's an amazing girl, and I would say I love her as far as friendships go. I'm just afraid she's misreading our great friendship and love for eachother (phileo) as erotic love (eros).
I don't want to lose her as a friend, and I don't want to lead her on or hurt her. I'm comfortable with my sexuality, so the fact that she's a girl doesn't bother me, I just don't feel romantically attracted to her. How can I help her figure out what she's really feeling? Clearly I'm no expert on love if I can't even define it. It's a tricky thing.
So my Questions for you: How do you define love? When do you know it's real? How would you handle a situation like the one I'm experiencing with my friend?
So you know how I said glue can't fix all problems, I have stumbled upon something so much better than simple glue. This person holds me together in ways I didn't think were possible. Not only do they hold me together, they build me up, and make even the worst days enjoyable. I'm so grateful for this person. I could only try to express how incredible they are, and how incredible they make me feel. I would surely fall short, so I'm not even going to try. I just hope I manage to repay this person for the complete facelift they have given my life.
It's been a while since I've laughed and smiled as much as I have been the past few days. I completely believe in the quote I mentioned in my last post, "Sometimes things fall apart so better things can fall together." I felt like my world was falling apart around me, and I was spinning out of control. This person somehow manages to stop the spinning, and bring me back to Earth, all while taking me to a completely different level. It's magical stuff, and currently I am happily along for the ride.
I just feel so lucky to have found the silver lining in my life. I'm an optimistic person by nature, but here lately I was feeling a bit less than cheery. I've defintely received a shot of adrenaline, and I'm ready to charge full speed ahead at this crazy world I'm living in. I think when the time is right, we all find our silver lining, or our superglue. Timing, in my opinion, is everything. Apparently it's my time to find my little slice of happy once again. I truely hope everyone reading this has already found their little slice of happy, or they're getting super close. Don't give up, sometimes you find things you didn't even know you were looking for. Life is a crazy thing. It's beautiful and completely mad. We only have one shot at it, so aim for the sky.
My question for you: Have you found your little slice of happy yet? If so, what is it?
Well I’ve officially discovered glue can’t fix all problems. The cracks in my previous post turned into the Grand Canyon. It was extremely difficult to come to terms with in the beginning, but I just have to keep telling myself this is for the best. Isn’t there a great quote that goes something like “sometimes things fall apart so better things can fall together”? I’m just trying to find the silver lining in my situation. I’m surrounded by amazing people that I love and adore. I’m so grateful for the life I have. Sometimes it’s stressful, and crazy, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
Today was an absolutely wonderful day, it was warm, and I got to spend time with some amazing people. In person, on the phone, and through the wonderful world of Skype. Honestly, I dont know what I would do without my incredible friends. They truely keep me going. This has seriously been the longest week ever. I never thought it would end. It definitely has had its ups and downs. And by ups and downs I mean Mt. Everest, and Ground Zero. But that’s life, isn’t it? If everything was static, life wouldn’t really be worth living.
The highs and the lows help us learn how to navigate this crazy thing called life. Without lows, we wouldn’t be able to fully appreciate our highs. I truly believe that what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. So in a weird way, I’m thankful for the hardships I’ve had to endure in my life, and the ones that have yet to happen. They’ve shaped me into the person I am today; I’m finally starting to love myself. It’s hell going through all the challenges we face on a daily basis, but we’ve always got to remember to be strong, sit it out, and we’ll survive. Hell isn’t eternal, at least not in this sense. If we believe in ourselves, and look for a little help from our friends, we can overcome anything.
So my question to you: What have you overcome? How did you do it? How did it impact your life?
At some point or another, each and every single one of us is going to have to put our trust in another person's hands. Sometimes we let go of this trust easily, other times it's hard to loosen our grip. No matter how easily (or not so easily) you put your trust in another person, it's a big step. I, for one, have never been a very trusting person. Maybe it's the result of years of "stranger danger" being drilled in my head by my mother. I dont know, I've just never found it easy to fully give someone my trust.
I'm a pretty guarded person, which is one of the reasons I write. I feel kind of anonymous behind a pen or keyboard, which makes it easier for me to express myself. People have always baffled me. Which is a big reason for my mistrust. I truely want to believe that mankind is inherently good, but this gets difficult each time I'm hurt by someone.
I've lost so many friends because they betrayed me after I gave them my trust. Losing a friend can be devastating. Being betrayed by someone you're in a relationship with hurts on a different level though. When you open yourself up to someone, and give them your trust as well as your heart, you expect them to do the same. I was completely betrayed by someone that I trusted with my whole heart.
One of my very first relationships was plagued with lies, deceit, secrets, and another girl. While this boyfriend was cheating on me, my "love" for him made me blind and stupid. I tried to rationalize the stories he told me, and I made excuses for his strange behavior. It was completely unhealthy. Eventually I had to stop lying to myself, and accept the fact that someone, once again, took advantage of my trust.
After this, I drew a line. I would never let anyone get close enough to hurt me again. I put up a wall. I refused to give another person my trust. Yet, here I sit, in a relationship with someone that I want to give all of my trust to. It's honestly one of the hardest things for me to do though. I want to, I really do. It's just, in the back of my mind, I'm thinking about all of the people that have hurt me in the past. No one wants to get hurt again. As much as I care about this person, if they ever truely hurt me, I would be completely devastated. I'm not saying that I believe they will hurt me, I honestly don't think that'll happen. I'm just fighting myself, and my own deeply routed fears and insecurities.
Being cheated on, and/or lied to really makes a person's confidence weak. At least, that's what happened to me. When I was dealing with the lies and betrayal, I started to question my self worth. I would think things like Maybe i'm not pretty enough. Maybe this other girl is skinnier. I must complain too much. Maybe he thinks I'm controlling. I'm not tall enough. I have a weird laugh. I'm too needy. You name it, I thought it. I completely picked myself apart. So not only was I dealing with these feelings of hurt, I was now having to process all of the horrible things I was saying about myself.
It took a long time for me to realize what I was doing to myself. I still have to stop and remind myself that I am worth something, and I don't deserve to be lied to. I think we all battle insecurites like this. At the end of the day though, we honestly just have to allow ourselves to be vulnerable. As much as it hurts, we really do learn from our mistakes. I don't think I'll ever be a very trusting person, at least not naturally, but I believe I'm ready to once again put my full trust in another person. It honestly feels like I'm jumping off a bridge, but at the end of the day, all I can do is hope this other person is standing at the bottom ready to catch me.
So I have a question and a challenge for you: Do you find it hard to put your trust in others? My Challenge: Let yourself be vulnerable. If you're on the edge of something, jump with nothing but hope below you.
Hunger: We all feel it at one point or another. Typically it’s in the form of hunger for food. Sometimes it’s hunger for knowledge. It can be hunger for adventure. It can even be hunger for passion. Right now I have this intense hunger for life. I’m alive, but am I really living?
Lately I’ve been feeling kind of stuck in a rut. I’ve been constantly debating in my head what I want out of life. I’m ready to dig myself out of this hole, and see the light again. Maybe I’ve not even seen the light before; maybe I’ve been living in the dark all along. Regardless, I’m ready to feel illuminated. I believe a few changes need to be made so I can really start living.
The first thing that needs to change is my complete lack of “me time.” I think I want to take up meditation. Now I’m not talking about converting to some ancient religion, and spending hours on end reflecting about my day. I just feel like taking 10 minutes each day, to sit in silence, and clear my head would do some good. I think we all get swept up in our day to day lives and forget to take time to actually appreciate this life. I don’t believe 10 minutes to clear my head, is too much to ask for. I’ll keep you posted on how this affects me, if it does at all.
The second thing that needs to change is my lack of self-identity. I mean, I know I’m Lindsey. I’m a student, I’m a daughter, I’m a sister, and I’m a teenager. The thing I’m not so sure of is who I am once all of the surface material is scraped off. The bare bones of me. I want to find all of my passions, and dreams. Once I find them, I don’t want to stop, I want to live them. I have a bit of a head start on my list of dreams and passions. I dream of traveling the world one day. I know I won’t be able to rest until this dream actually becomes a reality. I think travel, and experiencing other people and cultures, can help a person understand themselves. I feel like we lose our sense of self when we allow ourselves to be disconnected from the rest of the world.
I want to connect with people. I want to learn from the experiences of others. I want to make friends in the unlikeliest places. I want friends that influence my life for the better, and hopefully friends that I can affect and enhance the quality of their lives. I want to open myself up to change. I’m ready to change. I know this static person isn’t me. I feel like there is a dynamic and exciting person inside of me that is dying to come out. I think I’m finally at the right point in my life to let her out.
I know there are other things in my life that need to change, but I feel like if these two things change first, I will be that much better for it. I’ve always felt like in order to love another person we have to love ourselves first. But how can we truly love ourselves if we don’t really know who we are? I truly feel like I’m in love with another person, but I feel like I’m letting this person down in a sense because I can’t show them who I really am. I don’t know who I am. I think love is about being vulnerable, and what’s more vulnerable than exposing one’s true self?
A part of me is nervous that once I find and reveal my true identity, this other person won’t love me anymore. Then I have to stop and reassure myself that we are all worthy of love, and if another person can’t accept who we really are, they aren’t worthy of us. I don’t feel like this will happen in my situation, but I think we all need to be reassured that we are worthy of love, respect, and happiness every once in a while. I’m starving, and these changes are part of my attempt to feel full. Full of life.
So my question for you: What are you hungry for? And How are you going to feel full?
We all change. We change our clothes, our favorite colors change, our relationships change. We change. Some of us change for the better, others for the worst. I would love to walk around and pretend like I’ve been the same person since birth, but that’s completely ridiculous. We all need to change, so we can grow as people. If I was the same person now, that I was about five years ago, my writing would be nothing like it is today.
I have opened up on so many levels. I am much more open-minded now. I grew up in a moderately conservative household. I would just agree with whatever my parents would say when it came to politics and social issues. But as I’ve grown, and matured, I can see that my personal opinion of the world is very different from that of my parents. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that either. I don’t want to be cookie-cutter image of my parents. I am my own person. My personal experiences have shaped me, just as the experiences of my parent’s lives shaped them.
Now my beliefs and view of the world has changed, yes, but my personality has been pretty static my entire life. I was watching home videos with my family last weekend, and I’ve obviously not changed much on the awkward nerd front. I have been running around, spastically trying to be the center of attention my entire life. It’s weird though. In public, I’m completely introverted, but once you get to know me, I’m the farthest thing from it. But I’ve noticed that lately, I’m starting lose my introverted tendencies, even in public. I’m trying really hard to open up to people, and be much friendlier than I typically would. So far, so good. Sometimes it feels nice to smile at a stranger walking past.
As we get older, and change, we start to realize that certain things shouldn’t bother us as much as they do. Also, some of the things that we used to turn a blind eye to can completely upset us now. I still live at home, and I’m starting to notice the lack of freedom my parents give me in certain situations. For the longest time, I was lazy, and I let my parents do everything for me. My laundry, my dishes, they made my dinner; they ran all of my errands, they filled out any paperwork I had to do. Now, I’m trying to do more for myself, and it’s almost as if my parents don’t want to let me grow up. I mean, I know I’m their little girl, but they’ll have to let me live my own life at some point. Stuff like this just makes me ready to move out. Not because I don’t love my parents, I just feel like it’s time for me to really get to know myself. I’m still changing, and I think it would be healthy for me to live on my own, and have a proper introduction to this new Lindsey.
So my question for you: How have you changed over the years? Do you ever find yourself faced with a lack of freedom? If so, how do you deal?
What is our society's obsession with oversharing? I have nothing against being friendly, and talking to people, but there is a line that too many people cross. When they cross this line, things get awkward and uncomfortable for at least one of you. How many times have you been standing in line at the grocery store, and there is some chatty woman in front of you talking all about her hemmoroids and terrible marriage? Maybe this specific occurance hasn't happened to you, but you know what I mean. People seriously have no tact these days.
Sometimes people don't have to overshare about their own lives, they can just be too friendly. Like if you're in a bathroom stall and notice you're out of toilet paper, so you ask the person beside you for some. That alone can be kind of awkward, but what makes it horrible is when the woman starts talking about what a nice day it is outside. Ma'am, we're in a bathroom, and I'm trying to pee as quickly as possible. I can't concentrate when you're talking about the weather. I'm sure you're lovely outside of a bathroom stall, but right now you're in a bathroom, don't talk to me while you're relieving yourself.
I would never actually say that to someone, but I have wanted to, many times.
Today for example, I was sitting in the library reading a magazine, just minding my own business. There is a little lounge in there with some chairs and couches. I was the only person sitting in the lounge area. Some creepy looking old man sits down right beside me. Awkward enough, right? It gets better. I'm sitting there reading, and he's got his own Feild and Stream Magazine, then out of the blue he whips out some big ass picture of a turkey, and starts showing it to me. He's talking about how creepy the turkey picture is, and all I can think about is how creepy this man is showing me this picture of a turkey. I don't care about your turkey, sir. I mean, if I was looking at some turkey pictures myself, and he noticed I had an interest in turkeys, maybe this situation wouldn't have been so weird. But I don't look like a turkey person. It was so strange.
I'm all for being friendly, and helping others, but I draw the line when it comes to be overly friendly, and oversharing. People really need to think before they speak and act. Maybe these things only bother me, would turkey guy have bothered you?
So my question for you: Does it bother you when people over share? Or when they are overly friendly?
Well I'm about to enter a very interesting phase in my life. The love of my life is about to move to London. We are already in a long distance relationship, and now we're going to be in the middle of an international love affair. It should be very interesting. I know we're both worried about the impact this will have on our relationship. Honestly, I believe that if two people are meant to be together, they will be. Life can throw anything at love, and if it's real, it'll hold. I'm attempting to brain storm ways to deal with the time difference and the distance itself. I'm trying not to worry about things.
The irony of things is, all day, everything on TV and the internet, and even the radio has had to do with London. I was watching the local news and someone from London was a guest star. I was listening to Mumford & Sons (my favorite band) not only are they from London, one of the songs was about London being littered with lonely hearts (not helping! haha) Everything is related to London! There have been more instances, but I wont bore you with them. It's crazy.
I never thought I'd be in a long distance relationship, but I am. The distance is getting bigger, but the love that brought us together still remains. I know it'll be hard, but I really believe he is worth any and all hardships. He's my bestfriend.
So my question of the day: Have you ever been in a long distance relationship? If so, what did/do you do to make it work?
Do you ever have one of those days? One that starts out pretty great, and then out of the blue it goes to hell? Well that's how my day went! And it's not even over yet, so there's no telling what other sorts of lovliness will transpire. My life has been completely flipped upside down, thanks to a squirrel. Yep, a squirrel.
It started when I was on my way to a friend's house. A group of my friends were getting together before everyone went back to their respective colleges after spring break. I was excited to see my friends. I turned onto my friend's street, then out of the blue this random squirrel darts right in front of my car. In a split second, my natural reaction was to just pull my car off the side of the road so I could save this idiotic squirrel with a death wish. Well when I went off the side of the road I ran over this pile of rocks, and apparently these rocks went to the Chuck Norris school of Bad-Assery because as soon as I hit them my car made the worst noise ever. When I pulled up to my friend's house I parked, and jumped out of the car praying I didn't mess up anything. What do I find? Both tires on the passenger's side are flat. Not just flat, slashed open. Wonderful.
I called my sister, so she could tell my parents. I knew they would be pissed, I mean it's two tires, not just one, two. So while i'm inside with my friends telling them all about this demonic squirrel my parents are outside trying to change my tires. Oh, while they're out there, guess what they discover? Something is torn up underneath my car. So it's not just two flat tires, it's a whole lot of Lindsey's Screwed. Of course this happens on a Sunday, when no car places are open. To make matters even worse, I don't come from a wealthy family. We pretty much live paycheck to paycheck. Whatever is wrong with my car is going to be expensive. But you see, my car is old, really old. It's not worth putting much money into. So this means I'm probably going to have to get a new car. A new car means Lindsey has to get a job.
I've never had a job, and there are no places really hiring around here. My town is emtpy. The only things residing here are broken dreams and people on food stamps. I understand why I have to get a job, and I've always known I'd have to get one eventually, but I really didn't want to get a job just so I can make a car payment. I need a job so I can put back money for college.
What infuriates me, is the fact that I go to community college because my parents couldn't afford to send me to a university. Any money that is left over from my pell grant goes into my college fund. Which honestly, that's not much money. I not only want to go to college, I NEED to go to college. I want to make something out of myself, and I don't want to be stuck in this lifeless town working at McDonalds or Walmart my entire life. The thing that really drives me crazy though is the fact that there are so many people going to universities right now, blowing their parent's money while partying and cutting class. These people are wasting an education that I would die to be receiving right now.
I've never had much money. I've grown up in the lower middle class my entire life. I'm okay with that. Once I started school though, I started getting mad at my parents because they wouldn't buy me the newest toys, or latest pair of designer jeans that "everyone" was wearing. I didn't get my license until I was 18 because my parents couldn't afford to put me on their insurance. I don't feel like I had a bad childhood though, I know my parents have always done the best they could. I'm probably a better person because I wasn't spoiled rotten like so many people are.
It just makes me sick when I see people throwing away their money on the stupidest things. Or I see people on Welfare, Food Stamps, and Medicaid, driving a nicer car than I am, talking on an Iphone. My family has never had government assistance, and I know there are so many people out there that deserve assistance, that don't get it, because so many others are out there abusing the system. I'm all for government assistance programs, but I do believe they should be monitored much more closely. And it kills me to see the government cutting education spending, yet our military budget is still expanding. An education is our ticket out of poverty, so we're going to make a decent education harder to get? And then complain about so many people being on Welfare? The U.S. government just seems so corrupt, and I don't feel like it has it's priorities in order. So, I'm sorry for my rant, it's just been one of those days.
My questions to you: How do you get through horrible days? And What's your opinion on the current state of the U.S. ?
Lindsey. Twenty-Five. Currently pursuing a degree in Professional Writing & Film Studies.