Monday, September 22, 2014

Poetry fluff

At my core, I'm a gooey, saccharine, hopeless romantic--I often try to hide it, though (and I'm probably not very good at it--I'm a terrible liar). I am attracted to guys who are rational, linear, analytic thinkers, and, at least in my experience, being a hopeless romantic tends to turn that kind of guy off.  I'm not sure if it is because they perceive romance and sentiment as neediness or if they just see it as unnecessary, but it usually means that I dial my romantic side back when I'm in a relationship.  I'm not ashamed of the fact that there is still a little girl inside of me that wants to be a princess swept off of her feet by a knight in shining armor. I've just grown realistic enough to know that most knights have tarnished and dented armor.  Besides, I am not the kind of girl that needs saving.  As much as I like the idea of a knight in shining armor, I think my parents instilled their daughter with just a little too much of their mid-western independence and ingenuity for me to be a passive princess, and my temperament is just a little too feisty to be resignedly patient.

This is one of the windows on the same floor as my office. Kind of looks like something you might see in a fairy-tale castle, doesn't it?

That being said, the sentiment of the following song appeals to my romantic side, and it captures the wistful hope that many single women have, just as it points to what it means to being open to whatever God has for us.

The longer I'm single, the more I suspect that I will remain so, and I'm good with that--life might not be how I envisioned it when I was in high school and college, but I have a blessed life: A wonderful job, an awesome parish, affectionate fur babies (err, pets), and tons of nieces and nephews to spoil.  It doesn't keep me from dreaming sometimes, though.  And, that is where this particular poem came from.  It is corny, but like the above song, shows a wistful hope for what may or may not happen.

The Dreams of this Hopeless Romantic

To be kissed senseless while held in a dip
To receive flowers for no reason at all
To be serenaded on some moonlit night
These are the dreams of this hopeless romantic

To be asked to pray at the end of each date
To be surprised with an impromptu lunch
To take classes together for ballroom dance
These are the dreams of this hopeless romantic

That he'll hold my hand during everyday moments
That he'll read me poetry for bedtime stories
That he'll cherish me all of our days
These are the dreams of this hopeless romantic

That he'll communicate with just a look
That he'll be deliberately pursue our courtship
That he'll place Christ at the center
These are the dreams of this hopeless romantic

That I'll want to bear his children
That I can help him get to heaven
That I will love him all my days
These are the prayers of this hopeless romantic


When I was younger, I would often separate out my gooey romanticism from my practicality--the older I get, the more I wonder if there is a way to reconcile these two disparate parts of my personality.  Is there such a thing as a practical romantic? If so, that is what I'd like to become.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Saying Goodbye to the Philosopher

I think that I have made a personal record...After 3 months of dating, my relationship with the philosopher has ended.  This is actually the shortest that I have ever dated anyone, with 6 months being the shortest before this.  I think that the amazing thing is that I'm largely ok with this development, in part because I had an inkling that this might happen a couple of weeks ago, and in part because the Lord has given me a lot of peace leading up to this.  I'm still processing it, but I'm at a really good place in my life--I have a job that I love, a parish that is downright awesome, and a new town to learn about and explore.

One of the flowers blooming around campus at my new job.  I look forward to the fall colors.  I also look forward to the spring when more plants will be blooming!

God used the Philosopher to get me out of my comfort zone back home and bring me to here to a better job and and an awesome parish.  I can only be thankful for that.  I don't regret the move, and honestly, I don't regret my behavior during our relationship.  I conducted myself to the best of my ability in a Godly fashion, not without struggle, but with integrity.  I hope that he can say the same.

So, my job for the next few months will be putting down roots where I am, and following where ever the Lord may lead...Right before I came here, I started a new journal, and decided that I needed to make my theme to be "Putting down roots."  I actually had the perfect journal to use for that theme, as well.
My current Journal.
I had already started doing so before the break-up, but now it starts in earnest.  I now have an hour scheduled for weekly Adoration at my parish, and will begin teaching CCD classes this coming Wednesday...I'm co-teaching the 6th grade boys, so please pray for me!!!  I hope to go dancing tonight at the local country-western hot-spot, and am finding my way around pretty well.  I also plan to go for a bike ride just for the fun of it this afternoon--something I haven't done since I was a kid exploring my neighborhood!  Just as I did before I started dating, I plan to enjoy being single--spend time with friends, exercise, work, and grow.  Yes, it can be lonely, but I'm learning that, when you take it to Christ, that loneliness becomes solitude--it is all a matter of perspective.  

This is my favorite Superbowl commercial ever--it seems to best illustrate the following poem!

Tilting at Windmills

Loss of sleep feeds my melancholy
A voracious monster who
Sucks at my marrow with abandon

The unknown will be known
And he is poised for another feast
His utensils gleam, napkin beneath the chin

This outcome might bring sorrow
A slow drip of nectar or a 
Great 10 course dinner--I know not which

One thing is certain: Melancholy's glut
Will be his downfall.
Like an illusion, he transforms

Prayer and gratitude diminish him
And the monster morphs--
Shadows dissipated, he is a pesky mosquito
Defeated with a timely swat.

(sorry this isn't a sonnet--hopefully next week!)

Monday, September 1, 2014

Settling in

So, I have now been in Central TX for a little over 2 weeks, and I'm finally getting settled into the area, although I still use my GPS whenever I want to find something.  Even so, I have found the nearest (nice) laundromat, the nearest Starbucks, how to get to work and home, and the nearest grocery store.  I've also found a really good home parish.  This is their website, and I'm really enjoying the worship, the community, and look forward to getting more involved.  In fact, I have committed to teaching CCD for the 6th grade boys class, so I'm going to need some extra prayers!  It doesn't start for another week and a half, so I will be able to spend some time getting prepared. :-D

The truck as it was originally packed for our trip here. we had to re-do the tarp at the Sunland park exit since it kept coming off.
I'm also in the process of working on my classes: I have seven this semester, so I will be incredibly busy during the week.  I should actually be working on my Argumentation and Debate class right about now, but I'm being a bit of a bum at the moment.  At this point, it is late enough that it will have to wait until tomorrow evening or during my office hours.  I will also be going to the bank and the post office during lunch.  I don't get to start riding my bike regularly to work until Wednesday, it looks like.  I can live with that, but I really want to get into and stay in the habit.

This is the truck after the redo.  It still billowed, but not as bad.  We made it all the way to Ft. Stockton, although the tarp was in tatters.  We had to buy a new one the next day.

I'm not sure what the digdog thinks about all this, although she is much less skittish than she was when we first started packing and then unpacking...she isn't sticking to my side like a limpet anymore, but she still prefers to stay pretty close.  I think that she is worried that I'm going to go away again like I did when I went to Spain.  At the same time, she is really liking the new yard, and she and my niece's dog have been having fun running around in it.  My favorite part about our yard is that there are 2 trees close enough that I will be able to hang a hammock from them come next spring.  I suspect that it will become one of my favorite places to read, assuming that the mosquitoes aren't terrible.  I may need to take out stock in Citronella candles...

The local running store.  I haven't gone there yet when they are open, but I'm hoping that I can find a running group through them.  
 One of the nicest parts about my new job is that I have an office all to myself--no more cubicle-like desk space.  Because of that, I've gone a little overboard in decorating it.  I have even bought a plant, in spite of the fact that I have the black thumb of death.  I'm keeping my fingers crossed that I can actually keep it alive for the duration.  From what I've read online and from my friends, it is actually a low-maintenance plant.

My office.  I even bought curtains!

My plant.  The mini-posters behind it are from Zen Pencils, and are all quotes by Emerson.
And, today, I unpacked my last box.  I'm officially all settled in, and I'm really thankful for that.  That means that I actually have a place to work from home, as well as that it is restful enough that I will actually be able to focus.  While I was a slob about keeping my room clean growing up, I've found that having a tidy space to work actually helps to keep a person focused.  I still need to do something about an office chair, since my ball doesn't seem to be keeping it's air.  I'm using our one folding chair at the moment, but it isn't very comfortable.  Since I've had my exercise ball for 4 years, it is probably time and past time to replace it.

My wall.  These are dance cards from the late 20's from various high school and college dances, a hat from the 30's-40's, and a fan from the same era.  

My bed.  Fat Cat likes having a clean room, too!

I still have a blank wall in my room, but I'm not sure what to put on that particular wall yet.  I'm hoping that I can find a nice print of art at some point in the near future.  Some of my wall hangings were put in my office, and there were a couple that I had to get rid of because they got damaged in the move.  It is kind of nice, though, as it means I can add to my repertoire of pictures.  I may see if I can find a nice Picasso print, since he is probably one of my favorite artists. 

But the thing is that this city and our apartment is becoming home.  I miss my family, but this was a good move for me, and I look forward to putting down roots.  Next thing you know it, I'm going to start sounding like a Texan with a drawl and everything!