Sorry for the week of no blogs, I was in a serious food induced coma from the Thanks Giving festivities. I am in the works of writing some new posts for my readers, that will be uploaded tonight. Thanks for understanding the struggles that follow eating too much pumpkin pie.
Disclosure; I know very little.
1. Always apologize for drunkenly ordering glitter on your mom's Amazon account.
2. Take care of your mental health. There is no shame in struggling.
There is no shame in asking for help.
3. Like revenge, left over pizza, is a dish best served cold.
4. Read classic novels, they will make you a more well rounded reader and writer.
5. Admit to your friends when you have diarrhea, they most likely already know.
6. Don't listen to people who find art underwhelming.
7. Pity the people who make unwarranted remarks about your body. They are shallow. Tragic.
8. When you say sorry, you should mean it.
9.Embrace passion. Passionate people make the world a better place.
10. ALWAYS thank, and love the person you were at 13. I am a firm believer
that the awkward junior high years are important.
11. Do small, kind favors for the people you love. Make their day lighter.
12. Don't be an asshole about someone else's makeup. If they feel beautiful,
that's what's important.
14. Listen to people who challenge your views, you might learn something.
15. Laugh genuinely, loudly, unapologetically.
16. When having a bad day, get in your car, listen to Wilson Phillips "Hold On",
sing it as loudly and intensely as you can muster.
17. Hell hath no fury like an articulate woman.
18. IF YOU SIT SHOT GUN YOU'RE IN CHARGE OF MUSIC,
don't take this job lightly.
19.Don't start a serious conversation on an empty stomach. You will be irrational
with hunger anger. hangry.
20. Be a role model, or a cautionary tale. Maybe both.
Who am I?
I am blue eyes that drown in poetry,
I am hands that touch nature,
reaching for places thunder has struck,
I am carried to places that feel nostalgic,
by feet that love to be naked,
I am a soul lost in the stars.
Freshman year of college. Need I say more? I lived with two of my best friends whom I've known since Kindergarten; Jesse and Cody. In true Lib-Cod-Jess fashion we waited until the month college started to find a place to live. Our parents had been pressuring us since before graduation to start looking. But when have I ever been known to listen to good advice? When we finally felt the need to begin looking, there were no apartments that had three bedrooms in Lewiston. We began to feel the panic of not finding a place to live. One of us had stumbled across a trailer on craigslist. If there is anything to know about the Lib-Cod-Jess Freshman year experience it's this: we excelled in making poor choices. When we met with the landlord of the trailer we found out he was living right across the street from us. Ideal living situation for 18 year olds, right? We signed the lease that same day. We were desperate. Moving in together was an exciting time in our lives. We were becoming independent, and living with people we actually liked. The boys have always been two of my favorite people. Jesse and Cody are the kind of friends that you want to experience life with. Burrell Ave was not the ideal place to live, however, it was such a shit hole we could barley cause any more damage to it than was already there. There were nights that turned into mornings, and experiences that helped us grow as people, that took place in our little shitty trailer. There was a night the cops got called on a party we had thrown, I was terrified and let Jesse take the wrap. I regret being a chicken shit in that moment, and letting one of my best friends get in trouble without me. Jesse is the type of person who owns up to his shit, and the courage he had made me realize I needed to be a more accountable person. We weren't different from any other 18 year olds; we didn't always think things through. That was one of those moments. It didn't help that our landlord lived across the street. Another thing I need to share about the trailer is that it was surrounded by other trailers, most of which had drug deals running in and out. We were slightly terrified of our neighbors. I remember on more than one occasion washing dishes and looking out into our parking area and seeing some questionable people meeting up. Cops would pull up and start talking to the people hanging out in our parking spot. I remember watching the conversations between those people and the cop; I felt like I was intruding on their privacy. But then I would remember this is my home sweet trailer they are having a confrontation in front of. The trailer was nothing if not entertaining. Anyone who spent time at our trailer will back me up on that statement. I look back on that year and think of the delightful cuisine the boys cooked up when we had friends over. What is this cuisine you might be asking? Nacho mountain. We ate so many nachos. This might have contributed to my Freshman 15. Living with two boys sure changes up your diet, not that I was one to order salad at dinner to begin with. I loved that Jesse and Cody cooked, they will make wonderful husbands someday. The three of us valued greasy food. We loved tacos, and biscuits with gravy. We didn't put the grease from our cooking in the garbage, because that would require us taking out the garbage more frequently, we were lazy. Instead of putting the grease in the trash like most people, we would poor it on a tree stump in our back yard. Like I said Freshman year was not known for good choices. One night we had a few friends over and someone flicked a cigarette onto the stump. It went up in flames, and by flames, I mean it was a delicious smelling towering inferno! Luckily we were able to put it out. It was one of those learning moments (Note to future self: Don't put grease on the stump in your back yard). We were all about learning things the hard way, because of this the boys and I never had a dull moment. Cody and Jesse decided to combine their rooms at one point, don't ask me why. I'm still salty they didn't invite me to join them. The bedrooms were small so they had to get creative. How did they fit two beds into one room? The dumbasses made their own bunk beds. They literally got planks of wood and nails and somehow bunk beds were made. I was actually impressed because they aren't exactly carpenters. This was a moment that can only be represented by the bunk bed scene in step brothers (video attached below). I can remember many nights where they would yell good night to me from their bunk beds. Was jealousy coursing through my veins because I wasn't invited to their slumber party? YES. I wanted them to attach a third tier to the bunk bed for me. For some reason, unknown to me they never made this happen. Freshman year of college wasn't always a party. I had my own trials. My mom was diagnosed with Thyroid cancer. This is the kind of news you never want to hear about your parents. I was struggling. I remember coming home to my little shitty trailer, and two of the most supportive friends when I found out about my mom. Jesse and Cody aren't the kind of people to feed you bullshit when you are hurting, their silence is intentional with love. When we did talk about my mom I was met with two of my best friends who reminded me I was not alone in my pain. I remember hugging them. The boys give great hugs. Freshman year taught us so many lessons. Most lessons we learned the hard way, but we had a hell of a time going through it together. Burrell Ave was the beginning of a chapter in the Lib-Jess-Cod experience. We don't live together anymore, but I will always value the memories we had our Freshman year. Here's to you boys, a few memories in a flash: Classy décor, clothing dryers that don't heat, broken faucets, leaking ceilings, sketchy neighborhood, fighting over the trash, Thursday throw downs, parental visits, laughter, no sleep, dinners with friends, the crazy landlord's wife, the puke green carpeted bathroom, living with people we loved. This was our Freshman year symphony, sung by Burrell Ave.
Loving your imperfections is hard. I have spent many nights obsessing over my loud laugh, staring at my stretch marks in a mirror, and smothering the circles under my eyes in anti aging eye serums. Now, I'm all for being proactive in skin scare but I really didn't need eye serums. I am 21. I needed sleep and to drink more water. But at times I will try anything to put my insecurities to rest. I will be the first to admit, my confidence is no where near where I want it to be. But I'm trying very hard to love my unconventional beauty. I think it's hilarious that my friends can recognize my voice in a crowd. Sometimes I say particularly naughty things, because I know they will recognize that it's me. People describe my voice as deep, I prefer to think of it as more likely to hit the Adele notes. My voice was something I was very self conscious about growing up. It was a joke in high school choir that I could sing with the basses(I've learned that this isn't a bad thing, like I said I can fucking kill an Adele song). That is the key to loving the things that make you different, see the beauty in it. Another insecurity that I had growing up was my freckles. I hated them. As an adult they hold no resentment. I learned to love my freckles when my grandmother, Nan passed away. She always loved my freckles, and called them angle kisses. The summer after she passed away I had come inside after being in the sun for a few hours. The freckles were sprinkled across my cheeks and nose. I stared at myself in the mirror, and began crying. How beautiful it was that I could finally see what my Nanny saw my whole life. When I learned to love my freckles, I learned to value new perspectives. It would be so boring if we all looked the same. When my friends look for me in a crowd they look for my eyes; the blue eyes that smile, they listen for my voice; deep and full of laughter. They look for me, flaws and all.
"I'm still learning to love the parts of me that no one claps for" -Rudy Francisco
I am a lesson,
I teach you that gin and glass don't mix,
the scars on my hand hold no poison,
they still look beautiful when I work in the garden,
My hair and my temper can both be spirited fire
when observed in the correct light,
passed down from my great grandmother,
I was not born to drink cheap coffee.
When you are 18 you are going to fuck up. You are going to make mistakes, and I am not an exception to this rule. This is the story of how I got a misspelled tattoo on my shoulder that still resides there today. When I was a senior in high school I was stubborn and naughty, and my mom and dad handled me with grace. They were patient. One night after track practice my friend Sadie and I decided we wanted tattoos, and we wanted them that night. (unfortunately patience is not one of my virtues). I told my parents, and gave little regard to the advice they had given. Which was this "you should probably go to a tattoo place that requires an appointment, and is well established". They never flat out said "Libby, you're a dumbass don't get a tattoo tonight", they were more tactful than that, but I'm sure they wanted to scream those very words (which is COMPLETLEY justified). Instead Sadie and I headed to the only place in town that would take our last minute tattoo request (RED FLAG). I was first. I wanted a blue bird with the quote "She belongs among the wild flowers". I was excited and nervous as I sat in the chair. The man briefly flashed up the design to me and Sadie. We both looked at it, then back at each other and said "wow! that looks perfect!" we didn't bother spell checking his work. This is one of those you fucked up moments. I remember so vividly sitting in the chair while he worked on my shoulder. I was nervous, so naturally I got sweaty. When I'm nervous I don't sweat out of my armpits. I sweat out of my ass, SWASS, if you will. I remember looking down at my butt sweat that was now visible to everyone in the room, but I didn't care. I was so excited for this tattoo I was getting with my friend. When he finished I thought it looked great, it wasn't until one of our friends who had tagged along got my attention that I realized what had happened. This friend pulled me over ever so gently and said, "Hey Libs, I think there's a typo in your tattoo" . My heart sank. What? Where? I looked in the mirror and read my quote back again "SHE BLONGS AMONG THE WILD FLOWERS" he misspelled belongs. I began sobbing uncontrollably, and promptly hopped back in the chair and begged him to fix it. He seemed unfazed, like the fact I had a word misspelled on my body, permanently, was a stupid thing to yell at him for. He did try to fix it, but it made it worse. He tried to squeeze the E in the BELONGS, but now it looked like BDONGS. I was livid. The man who tattooed me however was offended that I was angry and offered no refunds. This was a wakeup call to 18 year old Libby. This man who tattooed me was the perfect representation of how life can be sometimes. Like life, he didn't care I was upset and he didn't miss a beat about going on with his business. The worse part is that it truly was my fault, I was the dumbass who didn't spell check something that I knew was going to go on my body permanently. I left that tattoo shop realizing I made a mistake. When I told my parents they didn't laugh, or remind me that they had warned me. They aren't those kind of people. They knew I was already paying the price. I thought about getting it covered up, and maybe one day I will. But it is such a hilarious thing to look back on, and an amazing ice breaker. It is not always easy to laugh at yourself but if you are anything like me, you don't have much of a choice. My tattoo has made me and my friends laugh to the point of tears. I also use this story when I am making friends with a tough crowd. On a spring break trip to the Virgin Islands, my friend Olivia and I went to a beach bar, where I told this story. Everyone was laughing. The bar tender found it particularly hilarious, and we got free drinks and invited on a boat ride the next day. People warm up to me when I tell them about my tattoo because it's funny, and because its easy to talk to someone who doesn't portray themselves as perfect. If I could go back and change the misspelling of my tattoo on my shoulder, I WOULD. But you don't always get to take back mistakes in life, and that's ok. You live and you learn. I don't belong among the wild flowers, I BDONG among the wildflowers.
When I was around 8 years old I was diagnosed with arthritis. My dad also has this type of arthritis, so we had an idea of what we were dealing with. I don't remember a lot about how this news affected me, in fact im pretty sure it wasn't a big deal to me at the time because my parents always have grounded me in who I am. Pain did not change who I was. I have never known how to answer people who ask me what it is like, how it feels. I could always give the honest, straight forward answer which was that my joints hurt and I got sick more easily from my medication. Those were the facts. But I always felt like the people who asked that question wanted an answer with more depth. I don't know if my perception of these people was correct, but I always think they wanted to know how chronic pain affected an 8 year. They wanted to know how arthritis felt to someone so young, and how this affected my life. I was still a kid who played and laughed and pushed boundaries. It did affect me in the sense that I had more sick days from my joint pain flaring up, and my medication making my immune system weak. But in the scheme of life, arthritis has always been a small thing. I have always felt blessed with the support system I had growing up. I went to Children's Hospital in Seattle Washington every 3-6 months. My mom and I would drive the six hours, and through those road trips I think we really got to know each other in new ways. Not every mom and daughter are forced to drive six hours together every few months, and after a while we started talking about insignificant truths. By insignificant truths I mean we ended up talking about things that made us who we are. I remember learning about how my mom doesn't eat things with blue dye in them because it feels so unnatural to her, and she learned why I was madly obsessed with ratting the living shit out of my hair (because people on Jersey Shore did it, and we all know how cool they were) I feel blessed that we talked about these things together on our drives to Seattle, because believe me, I was not the easiest kid to raise and we were gifted time to get to know each other during the messy years. On those car rides arthritis was never the thing on my mind. But to keep this blog post totally real I will say this: pain can make you bitter. When you are hurting it is easy to feel sorry for yourself sometimes. But I learned to give myself about 5 minutes of the pity party, then be grateful again. There are so many people who live with pain in ways I couldn't begin to fathom. I don't for one second take for granted the love that is given to me when I am hurting. I am aware that pain can make a person bitter, so I try very hard to be grateful. Arthritis has never been who I am, but it is a part of me. If you would ask me today what it is like to have arthritis, I still would struggle to give you an answer. It is a lot of things, not all of which have been bad. It is something that made me more empathetic and closer to my mom. It is also something that has caused me to lay in bed on beautiful days. You take the good with the bad, and never stop being grateful to the people who support you.
Most girls get their first kiss in high school, maybe even their first boyfriends. Oh no, not me. I got mine at 20! at a DMX concert! X GON' GIVE IT TO YA. I would like to preface this story by saying sorry mom (most future blogs will contain a "sorry mom", because she is so patient and hilarious when dealing with me and my brother). This story starts a few weeks after Christmas when me and my best friend Sidney decided to road trip to Tacoma Washington for the Dope Music Festival. If there is a glue that holds my friendship with Sidney together it is road trips and a mutual love for each others sense of humor. Both of these aspects of our friendship often lead to the best memories. This particular road trip is one of my favorites. We barley had $200 combined, and begged my mom to pay for a hotel room for us near the concert. Being a poor college student isn't the worst thing in the world, but it's pretty damn difficult when you are as impulsive with money as I am. Rent is due at the end of the month? LETS GO TO A CONCERT! The road trip its self was fuelled by coffee and DMX songs. When we got to our hotel we pregamed with music that would be preformed at the concert and cheap beer (this is where the "sorry mom" comes in). When it was time for the concert we arrived at the venue and noticed we were surrounded by 30-40 year olds. HELL YA, THESE ARE OUR PEOPLE. No seriously, we thrived. The only issue we faced with this concert is that we weren't 21 yet. And we really love beer. See the problem? This is how I got my romantic, memorable, time stopping first kiss. Just kidding, it was none of that. Sidney and I were taking turns talking people into buying us beer, for the most we could charm people into buying us beer with our killer personalities. Or maybe we just begged and annoyed them long enough for them to give in. Towards the middle of the concert it was my turn again, and I made my way to the concessions where I tried to sweet talk this gentleman who was around 40 into buying me beer. This man was balding and had a scarce mustache that every girl dreams of. His style was a mix between someone's uncle and a 90s dream boat. The lethal combination. He had none of my shit. But after about 5 minutes of begging he saw how desperate I was and asked for me to kiss him. I know what you are thinking, did you really make out with this man who is your parents age for beer, are you really that cheap? yes, the answer is yes. And it was humbling. I got our beer, and the man asked me if I wanted to be his girlfriend. Yes that is creepy, and yes that truly happened. Much to his surprise I said no and left with our Coors Light. I know how shocked you all must be I didn't take him up on his offer, I mean I could have killed two birds with one stone. Check and check. I ran back to Sidney and we carried on with our concert, and had the best night. The next day when I told her the story we laughed for hours on the car ride home. There was so much to that night I could sit here and write about, but that shit is too good to not write about in another blog. So yes, I got my first kiss at a DMX concert by a 40 year old man, who also wanted to go steady. It was the night every girl dreams of ;). Thanks for reading! and until next time,
XOXO Gossip Lib
About a year ago I began journaling everyday, with the belief that I would never actually fill out a full journal. I thought I would run out of things to say, or motivation to keep the journal a priority. Since that day I have completed three journals. It's something I am very proud of. I think we forget to give ourselves credit when we do things we didn't think we could. I hope this blog will be another writing project I can be proud of. Sorry for this initial post being so brief, I promise the real bread and butter posts are soon to come!
Libby Anne Groseclose