Five minutes ago

This tab has been up on my computer now for a solid 30 minutes. Time to write and fill the white space, huh?

But, try as I might, I can’t get this worded correctly and succinctly. So another five minutes passes. And I’m no closer to writing this than I was five minutes ago.

Here we go.

One of my favorite Gertrude McFuzz lines.
One of my favorite Gertrude McFuzz lines.

I was told last year that I have a “swagger.” I walk with a purpose; head up, eyes forward, smile –– usually –– on. I wouldn’t call it swagger; that has negative connotations. Especially when nobody knows how hard it is for me to put that smile on and walk around.

I’ve been demolished several times. Shut down. Turned off. Doubted.

Eighteen-year-old Emily walked onto campus and acted like she owned the place.

Fast forward to the tear-stained, first night of my second semester.  Through hearsay, a friend told me the freshman girls in my major who knew me didn’t like me.

I sobbed. I don’t know why, but I sobbed. Then I learned how to say “fuck you” and got over it, but some of my confidence remained shattered on the floor. And I didn’t know how to fix it.

Having my boyfriend of nearly three years join me at school the next year was a treat. He pumped me up, overflowing my world with unnecessary, dare I say it, cockiness.

I had to. I just had to. I began this semester, sans boyfriend and basically parent-less after informing them I had decided to leave the cross country team.

The quotes on my walls served as my only vice, helping me through a terribly difficult time and inspiring me to climb out of bed, despite the urge to stay tucked in and continue hugging Strawberry, my barely-pink-anymore teddy bear. I read these quotes every morning and remind myself that everything is going to be okay and that, though I’m just a little girl in a big world, I have the power to change it.

Thank you, Papa.
Thank you, Papa.

As my Papa said and as the quote on my wall states, “Everything happens for a reason.”

I wouldn’t be in the position I’m in right now if I still had that boyfriend or if I still ran on a rigorous, D1 cross country team.

I made these choices. I stood by them. I defended them.

Now I’m waving to a scared, 18-year-old Emily from across the gorge, urging her to take a risk. Assuring her that she’ll land safely on the other side and I’ll be there to comfort her.

The only birdie left

I guess I never thought that this part of my life would actually come. I spent so much time looking forward to it yet dreading it at the same time that I didn’t even notice when it actually arrived.

We recently dropped my littlest big brother off at the college where he will spend the next four years of his life. I’m the only bird left in the nest.

I feel sort of abandoned. Alone, scared, confused. I get irritated with my parents very easily now because all of their attention is on me. It’s certainly not a bad thing, but at times it’s not the best thing either. When you go up the stairs in my house, you are faced with a long hallway. Take a right and you’ve got my parents’ and my room along with my daddy’s office. This section is still thriving and full of life. Take a left instead, and you are faced with three empty bedrooms and a bathroom. This is the dead end of the upstairs hallway.

That bathroom is the only good thing that has come out of all this. We recently painted the walls a beautiful brown and got light blue and brown polka-dotted towels. The rest of the bathroom is accented by that beautiful light blue color. It is now all mine. After years of sharing with my brothers, then my parents, then my brothers again, I finally have a bathroom all to myself. The day we moved Adam out, we arrived home and I immediately got crackin’ on that bathroom. I had to clean and scour and scrub all of the yucky boy germs out of it. The vanity now gleams, the cabinet immediately to the right when you walk in is stocked with an extra hand towel, washcloth, toilet paper, and paper towels. On the top shelves are candles, cool-colored lanterns from my room, and an awesome blue twisty light thing that I stole from my brother Jordan’s room (shhhh!). Gone are my brothers’ little bath pouf things, instead where they were hanging I have two of mine taking up space. Gone are their empty shampoo bottles. Instead, only mind are present.

I’m sad that all of my boys are gone. Jordan’s coming back soon, but he’ll leave again, I know. In the meantime, I’m going to cherish not having to put the toilet seat down everytime I need to use the toilet.

It’s still July 2008 to me

The calendar in my room says that it is still July 2008. It has taken me a whole year to build up enough guts to tap on its shoulder, come face-to-face with it and make it admit that it is wrong. I’m scared to get its reaction to this news, but it needs to face the facts. July 2008 is long gone. July 2009 is almost gone. It has been July in my room all year long, and I think it’s time to change it.

It’s a Nickelodeon magnetic calendar, okay? All I have to do is switch the days around to meet the correct days of the week and add on a couple “FRIEND’S BIRTHDAY!” and “FAMILY BIRTHDAY!” here and there to complete my work of art. I promised myself that when July 2009 was over I would change it, and here I am…a whole year later. I thought that by not switching my calendar I could trap time and keep it from moving. Now I’m ready to face the fact that I can’t. I’ve been in denial all year; it’s time to move on.

So, in a few minutes Kevin, it will no longer be July 2008 in my room anymore. Goodbye childhood. Hello, August 2009. Welcome to my Nickelodeon cartoon magnetic calendar that is meant for a 10-year-old boy. I guess I have to work on this “growing up” thing, huh?