here's what i do when i feel overwhelmed

  • Turn off my phone for an extended period of time. Power down. It feels great.
  • Sit in absolute silence. Most of the time, on the floor in my living room. Just close your eyes so you don't notice all of the dust and dirt on the floor, therefore adding to your stress level.
  • Watch YouTube videos of Jenna Marbles attempting to color/cut/style her hair. There's no logical explanation, but I find these videos incredibly relaxing.
  • Other videos I find relaxing: anything with a kitten, fashion illustrations at 3x the normal speed, candy making (!!) and gag reels. Also, random clips of Keeping up with the Kardashians.
  • Tell people I don't want to talk about it. I'm lucky to have a good group of people I can reach out to when something is bothering me. But I'm even luckier that they are understanding when I'm not ready or interested in talking about something. Endless love and constant boundaries, right?
  • Remember the following cliche sayings: There's an ebb and flow to everything. Everyone is going through something. This too shall fucking pass.

Tell me what you do when you're feeling stressed or overwhelmed.

stream of consciousness: has anyone seen my focus?

I would probably benefit from seeing a therapist. We all would, in my opinion.

But until I get around to it, I'm sharing with you what's been on my mind. Maybe it will give a little insight on why things have been so quiet around here.


My focus is gone.

I feel like I'm being pulled in multiple directions and I'm dropping the fucking ball - at home, at work, with friends. Everything feels out of my control.


There's been issues with the plumbing at my house since the first weekend in January. It's fixed, to a certain degree, but until spring comes and more work can be done outside, I can't do any laundry.

Which means I'm dragging baskets of clothes to my parents' house, or my brother and sister-in-law's or the laundromat. Actually, Kelsey-- I know you're reading this. I'm going to bring some laundry to your house on Saturday, okay? Thank you!


There are more projects at work than ever before. There's also a shiny promotion and a new title dangling in front of me, but I'm too bogged down with everything else to focus on it.

I'm working on telling people no. Or that I can't right now. Or that I'll get to it, but not today. And possibly not tomorrow, either.

I suppose you would call that prioritizing. I call it feeling like I'm letting people down because I can't do it all.


Am I an asshole when I say I'm overwhelmed? Because isn't what I do with my life my own choice? There's no one I answer to, per say. No one I have to check in with before I make decisions. No one really depending on me for very much.

I'm not awake for midnight feedings with my newborn. I'm not juggling car pool schedules with my husband or my neighbors. I'm not worried about making cupcakes for the class because it's my child's birthday.

Compared to other people I know, don't I have it easy? And if so, why did I have a panic attack last week while I was waiting to get my fucking nails done?


One of my cats lost a tooth. It was loose, then it was sticking sideways out of his mouth, then it was on the floor in my living room. But he's acting fine - eating, drinking, playing, etc. just as he always does. Keep your fingers crossed for him. And also for me, because I live in fear of attempting to get him in a cage to bring him to the vet.


The only thing that doesn't feel out of control in my life is dating. No, not because I met The One ™. But because I don't have the time (or energy) to date. I've set a boundary, I've stuck with it, and it's been incredibly rewarding.

Just remind me of that when I'm trying to keep my shit together next week on Valentine's Day.

quote, unquote (a new outlook for 2018)

"I love being horribly straightforward. I love sending reckless text messages (because how reckless can a form of digitized communication be) and telling people I love them and telling people they are absolutely magical humans and I cannot believe they really exist. I love saying 'kiss me harder' and 'you're a good person' and 'you brighten my day.' I live my life as straightforward as possible. Because one day, I might get hit by a bus.

Maybe it's weird. Maybe it's scary. Maybe it seems downright impossible to just be--to just let people know you want them, need them, feel like, in this very moment, you will die if you do not see them, touch them in some way... whether it's your feet on their thighs on the couch or your tongue in their mouth or your heart in their hands.

But there is nothing more beautiful than being desperate.

And there is nothing more risky than pretending not to care.


We are young and we are human and we are beautiful and we are not as in control as we think we are. We never know who needs us back. We never know the magic that can arise between ourselves and other humans.

We never know when that bus is coming."

- Rachel C. Lewis, Tell The People You Love That You Love Them

creature comforts

  • a stack of library books
  • an oversized mug filled to the brim with just-the-right temperature coffee
  • bottles of wine tucked in the refrigerator for safe keeping
  • three candles burning at the same time, in different rooms
  • anticipation of the first snow fall
  • the sound of music coming from the record player while I clean
  • fuzzy socks to put on just before bed
  • a pile of blankets to hide under
  • the presence of someone without an agenda

incomplete, part three

part one here // part two here

From 2017.

Sometimes I fear the sadness and doubt from last year has rooted itself so deep in my bones, it will continue to weigh me down until I drown.

I think it’s visible. I know I see when I look in the mirror.

I don’t get to see this girl very often -- in this case, it’s been months. So that means I spent part of tonight rehashing my recent life events, and ended up crying in a very crowded restaurant. But it’s okay – I’m okay. It’s not all smiles. It’s not all positive vibes and mantras. Sometimes it’s staying home for an entire weekend because the thought of having to put on make-up or do my hair or figure out something that slightly resembles an acceptable outfit is too much.  


I’ve found peace in various ways recently—distance, and boundaries, and the understanding (and acceptance) that sometimes, there isn’t a silver lining …no matter how hard you look for one.

I want to lay down, I want to feel close to the Earth—my center has shifted and I don’t know if I should follow it or try to bring it back to where it was before. Was it in the right place then? Or is it in the right place now and I just have to catch up to it?

Recently, he apologized. An apology that was more for his benefit than for mine. After the initial wave of vindication passed, I realized that even if he did mean it, it didn’t change anything.

Not a damn thing.

incomplete, part two

Below are more incomplete posts. These are from 2016.

Part one can be found here.

Remember to say thank you, always. Even for the smallest things. Especially for the smallest things. The saying “there’s always one” applies to a lot of things, including people. Don’t let that one person lessen what so many others have done for you. Drink water, so much water.  Spend more time outside. Gossip less, and encourage those around you do to the same. Give the gift of stability. Offer help and accept it. Learn how to trust others but only after you’ve learned how to trust yourself. Set goals and stick to them. Know when to walk away but don’t be so hard on yourself for taking so long to do so. Remember that timing is everything. And people often show you exactly who they are if you’re willing to pay attention long enough. Listen. To those around you but most of all to yourself. You’ll be amazed at what stress can do to the body—don’t allow it to happen to you and don’t cause it to happen to someone else.

“How do you feel about long distance?” she asked
 “How far are we talking?” I responded.

It was a Friday afternoon in late October; the day before Halloween. I had indulged in a little too much candy and could feel the sugar rushing through my body, preventing me from focusing on any task at hand. So when my co-worker stopped by my desk to tell me she had a friend she wanted to introduce me to, I was all ears; anything but work to pass the remaining hour before the weekend.

Six months prior she stopped by my office to talk about nothing in particular and made mention that she would try to think of someone she could set me up with.

This is common when you’re single. You become something other people want to fix.

Last December I went to the city two weeks before Christmas and bar hopped. Three friends and I went from pub to pub, having only one beer before going onto the next. We were buzzing with alcohol and the overall feel in the city that time of year. The saying (according to You’ve Got Mail) is, “Don’t you love New York in the fall?” which is true and entirely justified. But there’s something about New York around Christmas that is unparalleled.

So, yes, maybe that’s why I can’t seem to stop myself from listening to Christmas music. I’m chasing the feeling I had last December before a lot of things, well, went to shit.

With each toss and turn I made before falling asleep, I caught myself giving him another goodnight kiss—one after the other after the other.


In the middle of the night I woke up for just a minute to shift my body. But before I moved, I placed one soft, quiet kiss on his shoulder, wary of waking him up.

He turned, in sync with my motion, and returned the kiss on my shoulder. As I exhaled through a smile and hushed laugh, he gave me two more down my arm.


I opened my eyes and could tell by the brightness of the sun behind the shades that the alarm would be going off soon.

I turned on my side, away from him.

He followed, wrapping his arm around my waist and sliding me back toward him.


I didn’t fall back asleep— didn’t even try. I just laid there, taking in the last few quiet moments of morning, in the arms of a man I’m falling in love with.

incomplete, part one

I sat across from a friend last weekend and talked about my writing. It felt a bit strange at first, considering I'm pretty sure he's never read anything on this blog. But he writes too, and so we talked about our writing processes.

We agreed that anything forced will turn out to be shit. We also agreed that when the idea hits, words and thoughts flow effortlessly from our brains to our fingertips, to our keyboards and onto the screen.

I told him I've gotten better about editing. About accepting the concept of a "first draft" and to let something sit a little before I revisit it.

Except sometimes I don't revisit it. I don't edit or complete it.

And that's where the following comes from. Bits and pieces of posts I started, but never finished. There's a lot, so consider this part one. They are all from 2015.

Two years ago I dated a man who did not find me funny. I’m hard pressed to think of something that has bothered me more than that. I was attracted to him, slightly fascinated by his neurosis, but constantly felt like I could not be myself around him. Like I didn’t measure up. And yet, never really felt like I should have to.

And so when it ended, I wasn’t altogether too upset about it. It wasn’t right. And I stood on his back deck one night near the end of it, and called a friend to say, “You know what? I deserve better than this. He doesn’t even laugh at my jokes.

My ghost – the one I’ve tried to ignore for months on end – well, I know I’m not his ghost. Not in the same way that he is to me; ever present and just out of reach.

I sat next to him not too long ago as he pointed to a picture of a girl on his phone – it was through a dating app.

It was the way he said it more than anything. It didn’t sting – because I knew (I’ve known) that I’m not that person to him. But to see her, to see him point her out and say something along the lines of, “She told me she wasn’t ready for a relationship.” Well, that caught my attention and stopped me in my tracks a bit.

I don’t show up empty handed.

It’s something that’s been ingrained in me since I was a child- the asking of what I can bring, what I can do to help. I watched my mother do the same- write her name on small pieces of masking tape stuck to the bottom of Tupperware containers or glass dishes. Always bringing something along, always offering.

And so now I do the same. It feels right.

But I’ve shown up to my last few dates empty handed-- metaphorically speaking, of course. It would be rather strange if I brought a covered dish with me when I’m meeting a man for drinks.

Maybe it’s knowing that first dates, well- they haven’t exactly led to anything great.


And I have to wonder if they can tell.

On my first full day of being a 27 year old, I woke up with a man in my bed.  Someone I’ve known for quite some time (going on 10 years now), but who I don’t know all that well. Yes, I can tell you where he’s worked, or even what his brother’s name is, but I don’t know what makes him tick or the face he makes when he’s really, truly concentrating on something.

Nor does he know similar intimate details about me.

I’m not sure what sparked the comment he made in the early hours of my 27th year, but with a laugh he said, “You’re the dumbest smart girl I’ve ever met.”