Wednesday, June 10, 2009

the table

How fascinating is it that each of us are made so completely different? I recognize this when I think about the spectrum of my friends. How they range from the most out going and boisterous to the very laid back and calm. When I think of all the intricate differences of people's personalities and spirits I can't help but think, how's there's no way there's not a God. How else could all of the amazing individuals I know exist and be who there are? This brings me back to my friends and how crazy I am about them. I could go on all day about each one, but I think their common thread is this-they all bring something to the table.

I've been hearing this phrase more and more lately. "They don't bring a lot to the table." or "He really brings a lot to the table." You know what it means, but I'll attempt to define: it's when you're out, you a bar or at dinner with a group and everyone around you is in little conversations and somehow you get engaged in a conversation with someone that you haven't really talked to or gotten to know and all of the sudden you're nodding, your talking back at their comments, laughter might occur and a sense of satisfaction always follows. This person is interesting, sincere and educated on some topic that you're not and you walk away from that conversation thinking, "wow, he/she really brought a lot to the table".

I love when I'm surprised with someone bringing something on the table because the opposite of these "table" conversations is usually quite painful and causes me to use my fake laugh; which Mary says, distinctly sounds like this....huh huh huh--how ugly. I should take all steps to prevent my fake laugh ever being used outside the work place (where it is absolutely necessary to function)...

Of course, like every other thought I have, I come upon a moment of self-reflection and ask, "Do I bring something to the table?" I pray that I do and not the antithesis, but I can't really have a conversation with myself, so I guess I might truly never know. I know that with this thought in mind I will aim to bring something to conversations I'm involved in, whether with a stranger or my mom, I hope to "bring something to the table"- not by dazzling them with my interpersonal skills or with an witty joke or funny story, but just by listening, by being present and sincere- which I feel are the main factors when "bringing something to the table" and things that everyone is capable of attempting. You don't have to be the most interesting person in the world to "bring something to the table" all you have to be is yourself and just listen. Of course, I'm preaching to the choir here, because you, my friends all "bring something to the table"..... thank God or we wouldn't be friends because I'd have to use my unattractive fake laugh all the time.

"Good communication is as stimulating as black coffee, and just as hard to sleep after." - Anne Morrow Lindberg

Monday, June 8, 2009

Daaa da da da daaaa da (graduation song)

About two weeks ago, Robert and I went home to see my little sister graduate high school. I had forgotten what a hopeful time of your life that is. Remember the stars in your eyes when you would think about college and the future?? I know I fantasized about my future friends, my new fun college life, my classes, the parties, the football games... I probably didn't get to much further beyond that, but, I think I assumed that college was the answer to life, all you had to do is have fun in college, figure out what you wanted to do with your life and everything else falls into place. pppppfffftttttt. Is that ever how it happens for anyone? Don't let me confuse you, I loved college and I wouldn't take a second of it back, but I think it was very romanticized in my eyes. I thought that I had already gone through the business of "finding myself" in high school, and now, I could be like, "Hello, world, here I am..." I didn't know that hard decisions and big mistakes would lie ahead, I know that sounds terribly naive, but let's face it, I WAS terribly naive. I shopped at Pac Sun for Pete's sake. I liked Roxy, I had like four Roxy dresses that I thought I would wear out in college. Why did I think the surfer girl thing was cool? I really couldn't tell you. And it's really neither here nor there, but I would say that my fashion choices were a reflection of my sheltered existence? There's me below. ha.

Anyway, during my sister's graduation ceremony, Robert and I literally laughed aloud several times during the speeches that were delivered, I think one of them referred to the class of 2009 as "adults". Okay, really, I'm 25 and I'm not sure if I'm an adult yet. Actually, I can confirm that I'm not. Sometimes I think I might be on the brink of adulthood, but then I realize how absolutely juvenile I am 80% of the time. Like the fact that the registration on my car has been expired since December and I can't make the 5 minute drive downtown to renew it or that I started a blog that has TEN followers (I love each of you!) and that I neglect it on a daily basis. I'm not a girl, not yet a woman, I don't know what I am, but presently, I don't feel too adultish.

I can't pinpoint exactly what else was particularly funny during the speeches, but it was just the whole theme of it all. How then students had accomplished SO much and how now they were ready for what life had to bring. Why can't someone be honest at times like this? I guess you just can't. You can't stand up there and say, "Guess what, it's only going to get harder and guess what you're not ready for any of it. Oh and also, you're going to mess up a lot and it's going to suck." No one ever says that, but it is the truth. Perhaps, at 18, the truth is a little too much and it's better to believe the fairy tale. Plus, there's no way that at that age, you could grasp the whole refining process of growing up. How relationships refine you, situations, good and bad and in the end you become who you're supposed to.

Since that weekend I've found myself wanting to overload my sister with information. I feel sort of like a parent because I want to protect her from all of my mistakes. I want to tell her what to do right and what to avoid that is wrong. Over and over in my head, I've written a letter to her even though I know it won't help, she'll have to go her own way and make her own mistakes and learn the hard way like everyone else, it doesn't stop me from wishing she could have a perfect, happy life in college and beyond. See below for the top ten points my letter would hit.....

10. HELP- Everyone needs it, never be afraid to ask for help.
9. DRUGS- Just please don't. Addiction runs rampant in our family.
8. FRIENDS- Surround yourself with people that bring you up, never down.
7. THINGS- There are nice to have, but don't bring fulfillment or happiness.
6. CLASS- Knowledge actually is power. Don't be afraid to be dorky.
5. ALCOHOL- Use moderation. Less is more. Trust me on this.
4. MOM- This is going to be annoying, but she's usually right.
3. MONEY- It really doesn't grow on trees. How miraculous???!!!
2. BOYS- Listen to your heart. Really listen, it won't steer you the wrong way.
1. DREAMS- Follow them, absolutely NOTHING is beyond your reach.

How chesey has this post been??? Pretty chesey!!!! GOOD LUCK CLASS OF 2009!!!!!!

"Education is a wonderful thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing worth knowing can be taught." - Oscar Wilde