Hey, you stayed with us

It’s no secret that I’ve been relatively quiet over here on my corner of the internet. Even the last piece I wrote really at all was pretty short — kind of a surprise to me, too. Especially because it was about my first marathon, which I could talk about endlessly. And after the fact, I wanted to write something commemorating how I felt…but I couldn’t do it. I’d open the word document, write a few sentences, and very quickly lose interest, or find that I simply couldn’t go on anymore. When it came to writing, I had nothing left to say. It persisted through almost every aspect of my life, it seemed. I couldn’t write about music, I couldn’t get things done, and it felt like I was just stuck in a constant rotation of a little bit of school, a lot of work (which was also starting to feel too monotonous and exhausting), running when I could, and cleaning my impossibly messy room all of the time.

After aging out, I think that the events from last spring finally caught up to me. I had gone so long without thinking about the loss my family had endured, because I had so many things I knew I had to finish out strong. Graduating from Columbia, and the entire summer with Spirit; all truly wonderful, amazing capstones to the last four or five years of my life. But then it came time to start something new.

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I’ve Finally Aged Out…And it Sucks

I’ve been procrastinating returning to writing pretty hardcore since I got home. I also knew that I would need to ease myself back in, and I didn’t think that getting to work on this entry would be the way to do that. Instead, I wrote about four different cover letters and, well, now here we are. It’s time to dive into the blog post I’ve been dreading to write for the last five years. The post that’s supposed to put what drum corps has meant to me into roughly 1,000 words. I doubt we’re going to make it…but if there’s anything that drum corps has taught me, it’s that I’ll do my best. And most of the time, that’s enough.


Age-outs (PC: Erin Sintos)


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What You Haven’t Read about SXSW

Here’s what you haven’t read about my trip to Austin, TX for SXSW so far…

Last week, I had the pleasure of spending seven days in Austin, Texas. Not only was it great being in Austin, but it was also a pretty popular time to be there. South by Southwest (or SXSW) is the interactive, film, music, and comedy festival that completely takes over the city for almost two full weeks. As part of the completion of my interdisciplinary degree at Columbia College, I was able to attend the festival as part of the AEMMP Digital Distribution & Promotions Practicum course. For my project in class, I was able to incorporate something I was planning on doing down there, anyway. I got to write about all of the bands (good and bad) that I was able to catch, and it was published over on Atwood Magazine. If you’re interested in the music portion of my experience, click on the day-header for those ramblings. This post will serve more in the nitty-gritty of the trip, and what you won’t find on a publication. Thus, “What You Didn’t Read about SXSW Already”

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Year in Review: 2016

Wow, what a freakin year. As I went through pictures this time around, I found an astonishing amount of goofy selfies and embarrassing snapchat screenshots of my friends, so the fact that I was able to pull as many “normal” pictures as I’ve got in here is nothing short of a miracle. As I was writing this blog post last year, I knew there’d be a lot to talk about… but I never imagined to have the year shake out like it did. Anyway, here’s 2016 in somewhere around 6,000 words. Stay with us.

Taking in an overlook in Tennessee

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Some Changes/Update

I’ve been meaning to write a blog post for a couple weeks, but in lieu of some life changes and spending a lot of time way too focused on my personal life in the past week… it’s time I finally did something. There’s been a lot of wasted hours spent how I’d work this post, but all I seem to be good at when dispersing large amounts of information is putting it into lists. So let’s stick with that trend:

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Rambling: Perspective on Religion

Usually I won’t talk forever about my religion or what I believe or what I think, but last night, I was on my way back up to my room and someone in the elevator saw my knees and said something strange to me; “May the blood of Jesus bless your knees and help them heal!” Now, living in Chicago, I’ve seen and heard some crazy things, but the look in this guy’s eyes kind of scared me, and for some reason, what he said really bothered me. I got off the elevator and went back to my room, and these thoughts have been with me ever since then, so I figured I’d just put it in a little blog post and maybe get some perspective. Since that’s usually what I use this for anyway.

I used to go to church every Sunday. Not particularly because I wanted to, but because my parents dragged my butt out of bed and made me. I’m not proud to admit it, but I never really enjoyed church all that much. The parts I liked were the trips I would get to take with the groups, working at Vacation Bible School, going to summer camp, and playing in both of the church bands I got to be a part of. I never understood why people liked to sit through an hour long lecture with singing in between. I never truly understood what the sermons were about, even when I was supposed to be listening to fill out worksheets for my confirmation class. Looking back, that’s around the first time that all this started bothering me. The night before I got confirmed as a member at my ELCA church, I found myself on the fold-out couch downstairs wondering “Why do I want to be confirmed? Do I want to be confirmed? What does all this even mean?” 

That was four years ago.

It’s been almost a year since I really went to church. Because it’s been almost a year since I lived at home, basically. Like I said, church was something I hardly ever went to by choice. It feels kind of wrong to be writing this blog post in the time of Lent, which, ironically, used to be my favorite time of year as far as the church was concerned. I liked hanging out with people “late” on a Wednesday night, eating dinner with people that weren’t my family, and writing notes back and forth with them during the service.

So we get it, I was a regular church-goer by my parents’ choice. This past weekend I was at home, and when my parents asked if I wanted to go to church, my immediate response was “No, it makes me feel uncomfortable.” Which, unfortunately, is true. My church has been kind of a mess the past couple years, and maybe serving on the teams that I did wasn’t good for me. The church I went to at home had the same pastor for over 25 years. He literally built the church. Needless to say, he had been my pastor the entire time I went to church. So when he retired and left, I probably took it harder than I should have. I liked our interim pastor (the guy that comes in to help us transition and works to help us also find a new pastor that fits,) and I have yet to meet our new one, but it still feel so uncomfortable for me. I used to feel fine taking a nap in the youth room, or showing up in a t-shirt and jeans. Now I feel like if I showed up in that, (or god forbid, someone find me asleep in the youth room,) that would be it. The years I worked at VBS, the summers spent on the road, the hours served on the transition team and representing the church at VLM meetings – none of that would matter. I feel like it might already not even matter. Yes, I made friends at church – in fact, that’s where I met my first boyfriend – but the rest of it is all so confusing and weird.

I don’t want to say I figured it all out last night, because I didn’t, but I can say that I think I’ve figured out where I stand in all this. I’m not shunning the idea of church entirely. I’m not denying the idea of some larger power up there controlling things and getting a say in what happens and what doesn’t. I’m just saying that that’s not necessarily what I believe right now. I’m not an atheist, at least, I don’t think I am. All I know is that I’m not sure if what I’ve believed in all my life is necessarily what I actually want to believe. I like the idea of being able to go to someone or some thing with all my problems and my triumphs, but I’m not sure if that’s what I can really do with God.

Just out of curiosity, I started to take a “what religion am I” quiz, and I got to question four of twenty before I realized the big question: what is it that I believe, and what is it that I believe because it’s what someone told me?  

So, I guess, that’s where I’m at right now with all that. I feel like I could say so much more, but I don’t really want to think about it in my groggy mind at the beginning of an 11-hour work day. So, um, stay tuned…


EDIT: In my usual fashion, I’m procrastinating. I was just reading some articles on Matt Nathanson, and stumbled upon this quote from an article on Jewish Journal“I’ve pretty much committed to music my entire life, and that’s pretty much the only thing I’ve dedicated my life to, much to the chagrin of relationships I’ve had, much to the chagrin of family,” Nathanson said. “Music has taken over my life.” It’s for the same reason that he isn’t religious, he said. “Judaism doesn’t play a huge role in my life these days; neither does Catholicism … I’m pretty spiritual, but I’m not anywhere when it comes to either one of those religions,” he said. “I’ve never been able to dedicate time to do it correctly.” This indifference to religion might change, however.
I feel like I agree with what Matt’s saying here and I understand it. (Read the full article here.) And I just wanted to add that in. I’m not giving up entirely, but I think I need to explore what else is out there. Okay cool.