“If you look at the fact that you have a roof over your head, food to eat, that you are young and beautiful and live in a peaceful land, then no, you have nothing to be sad about. But the fact is, we are not only a physical body, we have souls too, and sometimes our souls get sick. If you break a leg you don’t just say ‘I have no reason to have a broken leg’ and ignore it; you seek help. It’s the same when your soul gets hurt. Don’t apologize for being sad.”—My doctor when I told her I had no reason to be sad (via jessicapshaw)
“If you asked your girlfriend, “Do you want a Hawaiian vacation for your birthday?” and she didn’t say anything, would you buy plane tickets? If you asked someone at the grocery store, “I only have one item, do you mind if I check out ahead of you?” and they stared determinedly into space, would you cut in front of them? Why is it that “you didn’t say no” applies only to sex?”—Real Love: Consent—No is Less Important than Yes (via yesdarlingido)
In other news, a breast cancer patient’s husband walked into the office of the doctor I work with today. His wife was in surgery, so he decided to pay a visit.
He was old enough that he likely served through Korea and Vietnam. I can’t imagine the things he has seen and the difficult circumstances he had been through.
But he stood there, stumbling through sentences, his voice shaking. I was facing the other direction and didn’t want to turn around and invade his privacy. But I realized after, he was crying as he spoke.
He thanked him for being the one to identify his wife’s breast cancer, for setting up the consults, talking to them about their options, he spoke about how highly he regarded him as a physician and a person, then joked that he was holding all of his wife’s valuables (he was presumably carrying a purse) because that’s what Mrs. X insists.
What struck me about this conversation wasn’t the gratefulness the husband had for the doctor. It was the immense amount of love he had for his wife that showed in the way he spoke about her. It was he started saying “I can’t even imagine if…” and couldn’t even finish his sentence. It was that tone in his voice that indicated that he couldn’t imagine his life without her yet, although they were already aging. To be a physician who is welcomed into perhaps the most vulnerable states your patients and their families will ever be in? That is why this is worth it.
My dad and I disagree a lot. In fact, this morning began with me slamming the garage door as he told me if I acted this way, I would for sure get fired from the job I begin in August.
But he is stubborn, I am stubborn, but I learn so much from him regardless of how many times we disagree.
Some background: PCUSA is this governing body that basically instills checks and balances into presbytarian churches to make sure the pastoral leadership within each church follows guidelines and what not. PCUSA has been debating and revoting over the new guidelines they are hoping to enforce about ordaining LGBT pastors and allowing churches within PCUSA to recognize same-sex marriages. Just yesterday, they passed this. The interpretation still leaves it up to each individual church to determine how they would like to implement this.
Since PCUSA began talks of this new interpretation, the leadership of my church in Tacoma have been figuring out ways to leave PCUSA out of a “righteous indignation” and their “spiritual obligation to uphold the truth.”
I’ve been hearing my dad’s side comments about our church for months now. How he believes the pastors are being blasphemous, manipulative, sneaky. It didn’t come to full circle that THIS was the topic he was talking about. It wasn’t until today that I realized my dad and his friends are actually the ones who are actively trying to convince the pastoral staff to change their views instead of storming out and continuing to be so close minded.
So yesterday, I saw one of the pastors from my church in Tacoma, post “bye bye PCUSA” on facebook right after this new interpretation was approved. And a slew of posts about “fleeing from sin and the plague of death.”
First of all, their words break my heart. It breaks my heart that they don’t understand the weight their words hold, or the very real people it ostracizes, or how hypocritical their view is to the very foundations that Christianity was founded on. The thought that there is a loving God, who LOVES first, foremost, and forever.
So I asked my dad about it. Mostly angry at how a college/high school pastor who naturally has influence over so many young kids, could post something like this.
My dad’s initial response? "yeah.. they’re just little shits."
I literally LOL’d when he said this, because that was exactly what I was thinking.
He went on to describe the biblical intricacies of interpreting scripture. That if we truly believe God’s word is living, breathing, and sharper than a double edged sword. We have to also agree that interpretations change, just as society changes, and that there is a constant need to constantly re-examine The Bible, just as it is necessary to continually examine other aspects of our lives. We talked about how in biblical times, the ill were outcasted out of fear of getting the healthy sick.. but as our scientific understanding of disease grows, we understand that outcasting the sick was a very narrow minded perspective that they made based on the information they had available at the time. It is ridiculous to shelter our perspectives. We must learn, we must grow, we must progress.
We also went on to discuss the spectrum of religion. Love <-> Rules. I loved what my dad said when he discussed that rules? they’re easy. they’re clean. they leave no room for interpretation. you’re saved or your not, and you have complete control over that depending on your actions. with rules, all you can trust in is a system. But love? it’s hard. it is messy. it isn’t dependent on you, but another being. but with love, comes trust. and this trust manifests in a complete confidence that regardless of all the variables in life, God is God, He is good, and you are who He says you are.
At the end of the day, my dad basically said that all of our versions of Christianity look different. That mine is different than his, and vice versa. And we all need to learn to be more compassionate and understanding of people’s perspectives and circumstances. but fundamentally, Christianity states that you’re saved if you believe in Jesus.. and when did that not become enough?
I’m incredibly proud of my dad for the time of person he is. I’ve always admired that he is the type of person who fights for what he fundamentally believes in, even when he had nothing to personally benefit. I don’t think my dad and his friends will win this battle with our church and that is incredibly frustrating. But there is hope. A large, fairly conservative organizing Christian body opening up the table for discussion, admitting their old way of thinking could be improved, and following through by changing their interpretation. That’s a huge win and maybe not the extent of progress I hope there will be soon, but it is at least a step in the right direction.
“It’s not hard to decide what you want your life to be about. What’s hard, she said, is figuring out what you’re willing to give up in order to do the things you really care about.”—Shauna Niequist, Bittersweet: Thoughts on Change, Grace, and Learning the Hard Way (via observando)
“The idea that sex is something a woman gives a man, and she loses something when she does that, which again for me is nonsense. I want us to raise girls differently where boys and girls start to see sexuality as something that they own, rather than something that a boy takes from a girl.”—
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
When we view our sexuality as something we own, we flip the switch and stop allowing it to be a mighty force that can ruin us if it is mishandled. When we strip it of it’s exchange value, we strip it of it’s power to define us, and see it for what it is—a facet of our multi-layered selves, imperfect like the rest of us, but an aspect of our lives that we can engage in however we choose. How valuable is your sexuality? How will you engage it? You have your own mind, values, beliefs, convictions, and opinions. Just don’t treat it like currency. Mishandling something doesn’t mean you’ve lost a part of yourself.
“I feel things deeply. I don’t know how else to feel them. I cry reading the news. I laugh reading text messages. I get inspired by underdogs. I get angry for you more than you’re angry for yourself. It doesn’t mean I’m crazy. It just means I’m okay with being me. If you’re not okay with that, I’m okay with you not being okay with that, but it still won’t change how I feel things.”—J.S. (via yesdarlingido)
“For the essence of sin is man substituting himself for God, while the essence of salvation is God substituting Himself for man. Man asserts himself against God and puts himself where only God deserved to be; God sacrifices Himself for man and puts Himself where only man deserves to be.”—John Stott (via yesdarlingido)
fact: This long, arduous, emotionally exhausting process starts all over again tomorrow morning.
I’m not ready for this in the slightest, yet I’m the most ready and sure that this is what I should/want/have to do. I feel uneasy, but for the first time in a very, very long time it is a good kind of uneasy.
“Margaret Atwood asked a male friend why men feel threatened by women. “They are afraid women will laugh at them. She asked a group of women the same of men. “We’re afraid of being killed.”—The mass killing at UCSB is awful and disturbing (via jessbennett)
“So often the idea of a ‘calling’ can paralyze you like the idea of a ‘soulmate,’ because you’re waiting for the perfect ideal opportunity. This can easily lead to disillusionment when we find that, like romance, a life-purpose is not the all-fulfilling, super-satisfying, happily-ever-after dream that we imagine. It is important, but not everything. The purpose of your life is NOT the purpose of your life. You were made for this one lifetime to glorify God with your hands and heart, and it’s then you can enjoy the work that God has given you instead of idolizing it as your identity. And like a soulmate, it takes great patience and care and even some false starts to find your true calling. You don’t have to figure out your life in a day.”—J.S. (via jspark3000)
I’m looking through medical school forums, and it is so ridiculous how many forums address what is “acceptable” attire for men and women.
1. I hate thinking about what I’m going to wear. I’ve always been the kind of, find the first outfit that is clean sort of dresser.
2. Men have it easy. Let’s me honest. when it comes to interview clothing, men have it easy. Neutral colored suit, tie, dress shoes, clean shaven. You’re set. Even if your suit is ill-fitting, no one will question your credibility on the slightest.
3. It is primarily women’s attire that is being examined. It is pretty much appalling how many posts are about the following.. Heels? how high is “unsavory.” Skirts vs. pantsuits. Which is appropriate. Where should your skirt hit your leg, should you wear panty hose. Is patent leather okay? Flats vs. Heels. Are you allowed to wear a patterned blouse? What kind of purse is appropriate. Can I leave my hair down? Are my clothes too tight? Am I supposed to wear makeup or no?
Honestly, I don’t even care about the misogyny that all of this surrounds. I just want a definitive answer like how men have on what I should wear so I don’t have to worry about the appropriateness of my clothing, my dedication won’t be second-guessed, and my credibility won’t be questioned. We’re constantly told to dress “respectfully. like you’re taking things seriously.” (WHAT THE HELL DOES THAT EVEN MEAN IN TERMS OF CLOTHING. I dress respectfully with my demeanor and how I treat the people and circumstances I am in. I take things seriously by preparing and upholding myself and speaking in a manner that reflects my commitment.)
but wait, if we’re honest, people nitpick all they want about clothing… when really, I could be dressed perfectly appropriately and I would still be questioned on the basis that I’m a woman. Clothing is just the scapegoat.
haha I rant, but I’ll be rocking my conservative skirt suit (What not a pant suit?), with a red (how scandalous!) blouse, with my patent leather heels, and pantyhose (super sexy, I know). There will be things people can criticize, but tis all good.
“We think long and hard when we choose a college, a job, a
career, or a spouse. This makes good sense, considering how
consequential these choices are. But we give little thought to
how much TV we watch or how often we talk on the phone or
how seldom we praise our children. Yet the little choices we
make every day often have a cumulative effect far exceeding
the significance of the big choices we occasionally have to
We do not need to fret when we have to make big decisions
about the future, worrying about the terrifying possibility that
we might miss God’s will for our lives. We simply need to do
what we already know in the present. God has been clear
where clarity is most needed. The choices we make every day—
to love a spouse after an argument, to treat an unkind
coworker with respect, to serve food at a soup kitchen —
determine whether or not we are doing the will of God. If we
have a problem, it is not lack of knowledge; rather, it is our
unwillingness to respond to the knowledge we have.”—Jerry Sittser, The Will of God as a Way of Life 23-24 (via yesdarlingido)
I never imagined I would enjoy research. In fact, I am quite certain I completely bombed my medical school interviews when I adamantly told my interviewer,
"I have no interest in, and I never will have any interest in research."
Oh how I wish I could go back and apologize to her for my complete and utter ignorance. (Especially since I was interviewing at one of the top medical research universities in the country… and those words should have been the last thing to come out of my mouth.)
Yet, here I am. I quit my job to do the one thing I said I never would. Voluntarily do research.
I absolutely love it. I love going into the hospital every day. I love interacting with patients, nurses, and doctors. I love being able to tag along in tumor board meetings and just absorb anything I can.
I just love being in an environment where I will some day work. It gives me a sense of perspective that I feel like I have lost and it reminds me that each misstep and failure will work together in the end.
I am currently working on abstracts in the research of two different protocols that both to seek to look into ways of increasing post radiation quality of life by decreasing radiation volumes in healthy tissues through the use of real-time tracking during radiation. (Sorry I’m 99% sure that made no sense)
I guess my change of heart about research has really stemmed from the understanding that research is where treatment standards and protocols are developed. And it is where people who are passionate to innovate and explore to bring better patient care beyond the existing standards is necessary. This is where my background gained through information systems really starts to become useful, because as new treatments and protocols are developed, evidence-based medicine requires the analysis of these findings to find significant trends and decision making tools.
Honestly, as silly as it may sound, I was oddly relieved to discover that what I’ve been studying is actually useful in medicine. Mostly because I have spent that last few years second-guessing myself and wondering if I had just been copping out during undergrad. That just because I found business and information systems interesting and relevant to healthcare, I made too much of a stretch, so I constantly wondered if what I simply enjoyed had undermined actual desired to do.
Anywho, it has only been a week, but I love it and it has already become such an irreplaceable opportunity. I have gotten so much confirmation and genuine encouragement from the doctors and staff there, and being able to witness doctors who treat patients with such kindness and compassion no matter what their prognosis is. It is extremely beautiful and humbling.
Actually, one of the doctors said to me the other day. ”It’s tough. But even when you cannot do anything for your patient medically, there is still so much you can do. There is always so much good you can do for your patient, and that’s why I love my job.”
This. This is why everything is worth it and will always be worth it. To have the opportunity to step in the midst of difficult situations and stand with your patients in their pain and suffering no matter their diagnosis, no matter their prognosis, no matter what lies ahead. This is why.
I was swaying side to side watching my boyfriend play guitar a few feet away from me.
I felt a hand slip up my skirt. It grabbed me and disappeared.
I turned around. “Was that you?”
He shook his head and pointed at someone else.
I glared at him. He wouldn’t look back. I tried to not care and thought about how I shouldn’t have worn a skirt… I shouldn’t have been dancing.
But then a hand slipped in front of my face. Shameless, but guilty—the same hand, and it wanted to shake mine.
He was introducing himself, and I asked if he was the one who touched me. He looked at me like I was an idiot, and so I felt like one. I looked back at him, “It wasn’t an accident was it?” He said, “More of a jest, really.” A jest?
I didn’t feel brave or strong. I felt stupid and weak, but I turned to face him anyway and said, “Well, it wasn’t a jest at all because it wasn’t funny. No one’s laughing. I did not dress for you. I was not dancing for you. And I did not ask you to touch me.” A foreign hand gliding under my skirt is not funny… it’s disgusting, misplaced, and violating… the farthest from a jest when you’re the one being groped.
The realization that I had in fact been touched by a stranger settled in and I couldn’t hear the music anymore. Everything faded out. I couldn’t sway anymore. All I could feel was the trace of his breath on my face, and the fingerprints he left up my skirt. I stood like a statue and physically felt the shame take root within me. It bellowed into fury that hollowed out my stomach and ruptured through my eyes. I was so embarrassed for crying and tried to calm myself— “This happens. It’s not a big deal. Get over it.” I was so alarmed by how untruthful those thoughts were—the thoughts of a victim—and it wasn’t that I had been touched… it’s that women everywhere are constantly feeling that bitter storm of humiliation and helplessness rage within them and like me, they don’t know how to respond.
I pulled away from the crowd and went upstairs. I sat alone, shaking, sobbing, furious. I couldn’t sit anymore. I punched the bathroom door open, wishing I could have put a hole in it and angry that I wasn’t strong enough. I stared at myself in the mirror, remembering who I am. He doesn’t have any power over me. I shouldn’t have to dismiss myself. They’re playing my favorite song, and I don’t have to run away. I went back in and stood on the other side of my friend so I wouldn’t be beside him. She asked if I was okay, and I said that I wish he’d confront me again so I could punch him in the face. I looked at him as I said it and saw him begin to say some bullshit excuse about how it isn’t a big deal. He said for me to calm down."Fuck you!" I screamed. I couldn’t believe those words came out of my own mouth, but they sounded terrifying and beautiful as I hurled them at him, refusing his demand. He opened his mouth, but before he could speak, I yelled, “Shut up!”
And he did.
Charles heard me yell and realized something was wrong. Seeing the worry on his face from on stage really shook me up again. The tears resurfaced. I lost my composure, and wondered how long it would take to get it back. Between songs, Charles leaned down and kissed me and I told him what happened. I left afterwards and crumbled into my friend Blair’s arms as soon as I got into the ally away from it all. I told her everything, and she comforted me. She asked me what he looked like. She walked me to my car and I went home. I got in bed and stared at the ceiling. I focused on my breathing and thanked God for His justice, because I’ve never been so personally desperate for it. I replayed the situation over in my head and thought of all I wish I could have said or would have done, and I was angry at how he managed to get away with something so unacceptable.
And then the messages started pouring in. They were from Blair.
Once I left, she went back in, got Charles, her boyfriend, and three other guys we’re friends with, and they hunted down the bastard I had described to her. She saw him as he was leaving and they followed him into another bar, cornered him, and with her boyfriend and Charles by her side and the rest of the guys at the wings, Blair confronted him, called him out on his actions—how inexcusable and unacceptable what he did to me was and why he would never do it again to another girl. When I left, the story didn’t have a good ending, but I am blessed with amazing friends, and thanks to Blair, she gave this story a good ending.
If you’ve never had someone speak up for you, I want you to know that there is nothing more beautiful than being defended when you’ve been violated in some way. You do have a defender. If you’ve ever felt objectified, belittled, abused, or devalued, your anger is valid because it is representative of justice, and justice is a fundamental characteristic of our God. This is a truth I’m holding onto tonight as I go to sleep. Even if I didn’t have brave, badass friends to hunt down the men who objectify me, I still have a defender, and in that, there is rest for the weary, the battered, the broken, and the violated. There is rest for me tonight, and there is rest for you. He is good and His love is sufficient because it doesn’t make excuses, it doesn’t tell you to calm down—it validates your fury and takes action on your behalf as your advocate.
"If you’ve ever felt objectified, belittled, abused, or devalued, your anger is valid because it is representative of justice, and justice is a fundamental characteristic of our God."
I’ve been trying to pull something together for the last 7 hours.. In the meantime, I have none of my personal statement done yet, have eaten half a large pizza, had more coffee than I can justify, have completely given up on my personal statement, and have decided to just write and vent about this whole experience of applying to medical school, again.
I have 10 handwritten pages of frustration, reflection, what I have learned, what I wish I could change but would never change because I have learned so much from it, what I still continue to aspire to, and what I will always work to become.
I don’t know how productive this really is, but at the very least, it is extremely therapeutic.
Who’s “winning”? In life.. who’s really winning… I keep having this thought. I keep asking this question.
Is it the one with the biggest following? …. The person with the most money? Or maybe it’s whoever has mastered gluten free healthy eating and is in tip top shape (oh how I envy you)
I keep drawing the same conclusions on who I think is really winning…
WHO I THINK IS WINNING…
1. The one who is CONTENT.. - I think you learn how to be content. Paul did.. he said “I’ve learned how to be content with a lot and how to be content with a little” I personally don’t think God makes you content with a LOT until you’ve proven to be content with a LITTLE.
Contentment could be the great gain in life.
Being satisfied and fulfilled with what you have and where you are…
2. The one that loves THEM-SELF… - Not in a narcissistic, weird, self absorbed way… But in an appropriate, balanced, “I really like the way God made me” type of way. I think you should love you… your life, your story, your gifts, your grace, your body. It’s really hard to love others if you don’t love yourself.
3. The person that lives in COMMUNITY… Oh to have good friends. Oh to live life with people.
"Life isn’t about what you’re doing… but who you’re doing it with"
I’ve learned you can go through anything in life… just as long as you have people with you!!!
4. The one who’s in awe of GRACE… - When you understand this whole thing is the grace of God.. you’re in constant SMH (that’s for the kids YO). You transfer from a one time realization of grace… to a perpetual state of praise… #JESUSISGRACE
5. The one who sees the POSITIVE in everything and everyone… Happiness is a choice, not a feeling. Being positive is the greatest weapon you and I have to combat a status quo life.
6. The one who RECEIVES more than they GIVE… - You can’t out give God.
The person who is winning… in my opinion… is the one determined to receive daily from Gods love. Long gone are the days where the daily focus was what you are gonna do for God…. #religion
Here to stay are the days where we can daily enjoy Gods goodness… (also, I highly recommend daily doses of ice cream)
-LOVE U. Hope you’re winning.. wherever you are :)
“You must remember, it isn’t about “All men are menaces to women,” it’s about “All women have been menaced by men.””—The best ever response to the ‘not all men!’ crusade. If it’s not about you, stop making it about you. (via dearfern)
WOW this is my first original I’ve ever written. I’M SO NERVOUS!
It gets better at the second verse.
My main inspiration for this song is basically how I used to be afraid to meet new people and make relationships. It’s from the perspective of a friend/s who reached out and basically told me to take them to a place I treasure, the place I’m afraid to let anyone in. That they will be there to take my hand, to lead me through to a place of adventure if I just hold on and trust them. Here’s to removing all fear in relationships and just enjoying life and the people around you who are such blessings.
Pls be kind idk the settings on my mic at all. I LOVE YOU ALL.
“If your ancestors cut down all the trees, it’s not your fault, but you still don’t live in a forest.”—
Pam Oliver, a professor in the UW-Madison sociology department, explaining the historical roots of racism in the United States to her undergraduate students (mostly middle-class and White). I try to use this when I teach race now, too, to get past the defensive “but why are you BLAMING ME” reaction.
The truth is, we weren’t looking for a vacation, we were looking for an adventure. We were looking for that beautiful chaos — the extraordinary feeling of anything can happen….
"Life is not an entitlement. Breath is not your right — it’s a gift that you take and give back. It’s not a promise — it’s an adventure. And someday, we will give these bodies back to the earth. In a greater journey than anything I’ve ever known, we will all find out what lies ahead- on the other side of the grave.
Let us not be lulled to sleep, thinking that this quick passage from birth to death is anything short of miraculous. Whether you believe in the God of Abraham, Krishna or the god of numbers — we can all agree on this: Human life on planet earth is a wonderful, improbable mystery. From the tsunami to the wings of a butterfly, this watery planet populated with these fragile bonds of carbon is remarkably unlikely. What are the chances? One in a million? One in a billion? Every step of science leads towards greater levels of complexity and unimaginable odds stacked against any form of human existence. And yet, in spite of of such impossible odds, here we are, hurtling through space together.
The weight of responsibilities that we feel in this life is real. Rent, car payments, health insurance- these are bills and numbers that correspond to real pressures. But our odyssey through this life and death cannot be reduced to the numbers alone. Or if you go by the numbers, at least factor in the remarkable odds that you’re alive at all! This strange, unlikely journey from dust to dust is much more than bills and paychecks. Sometimes we need a little perspective to awaken this urgency within us. To be reminded of how short life is and how much we have to be thankful for. Death is the certainty, life is the unexpected gift.”
1. Quit my job 2. Start a new temporary research work 3. Submit an abstract to be potentially presented at a radiation oncology conference with my name as first author 4. Finish GRAD SCHOOL (preferably without dying) 5. GRADUATE 6. Move to Tacoma 7. Plan EUROTRIP 8. Rewrite med school personal statement and secondary essays 9. Run second full marathon 10. Plan the logistics of moving to madison. 11. Submit all med school applications. 12. Leave for Europe trip 13. Submit med school secondaries while in Europe 14. Come back from Europe trip 15. get on a plane the next day to move to Madison. 16. Start work the next day. 17. Still be alive.
Why do you have to post so much on feminism? Don't you think we get the point?
Do not speak on behalf of others saying “we get it.” I don’t know about other people, but you, in particular, do not get the point. If you did, it would have never occurred to you to ask this question. Because if you got the point, you would realize that the more we address these issues, the more society will realize how necessary change is. If you understood that change was necessary, you would have no reason to resist or tire of hearing interjections that influence progress. You are the reason I will continue contributing to the dialog, so I will not apologize for how my posts on feminism make your time on tumblr uncomfortable or less glamorous. I’m so saddened that my feminism annoys you. You know what annoys me? Being hit on after I’ve already said I’m not interested, being told I should feel flattered when men make inappropriate remarks about my body, that women are making less money for working just as hard in the same job, that women are being overpowered and exploited by manipulation and greed. I could provide more examples, but maybe—just maybe—you’re closer to getting the point.
I’m not sure whether you feel personally threatened by the liberation, equality, and social justice of women, or if you are simply unaware of how much it actually matters, but neither fear nor ignorance are valid reasons for me to regulate or minimize how often I address something I value not only as a woman, but as a Christian. It is not your fault that you haven’t been taught to value and share the goals of feminism, but it is your responsibility to open up your eyes and do something about what you see. It is your responsibility to not be complacent with your unearned, privileged position in society and to seek understanding so you can step out of apathy and into empathy (which I must warn you requires more effort than scrolling through quotes about equality). Confronting me through anonymity to criticize me for caring about something that matters—something you think doesn’t concern you when it really does—is so closed-minded and immature. The problem is not that I generate a topic too often. The problem is something much more profound, and I will continue posting on feminism because you clearly do not get the point.
Before you ask me when you have your first kiss or if you’ll ever have a boyfriend, I need to tell you some more important stuff first. What’s more important than a first kiss, you ask? Plenty. First of all, don’t let that kid in your class, Danny, who called you fat, make you self-consciously wear oversized sweatshirts for the next four years to hide your body. That kid is horrible and years from now he will be boring and bald and trying to get in touch with you to come to the set of the TV show you work on. No, you don’t work on Cheers. That show’s not on the air anymore. That would’ve been awesome, though. Another thing: Say thank you, always. Gratitude is the closest thing to beauty manifested in an emotion. When you’re grateful, people are attracted to you. Also: Make sure you appreciate Mom and Dad. Yes, they never seem to let you do anything now except read books. Once you turn 18 you’ll never get to live with them again, and you’ll live far away, and you will miss them so much it hurts. Next: Learn forgiveness and bestow it generously. Finally: Don’t let anyone give you any crap. Mastering a balance of these last two will take you a lifetime, so you had better get started now.
“I’ve stopped being sorry for all my soft. I won’t apologize because I miss you, or because I said it, or because I text you first, or again. I think everyone spends too much time trying to close themselves off. I don’t want to be cool or indifferent, I want to be honest.”—
Azra.T “Don’t Wait Three Days to Text First.”
I hear so many girls talking about the unspoken game that’s underneath all the interest and attraction, and this is what I tell them: You can’t lose a game when there aren’t specified rules, so stop trying to figure them out. Stop guessing when you know who you are and you know what you want. Say what you want. Do what you want. If it’s reciprocated, it’ll continue to grow; if it pushes them away, let them go because if you’re too much for them, they weren’t enough for you. —LB