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Thursday, April 28, 2016

LDRs... A Beast I'm NOT (that) Afraid Of

"How you do it?" "Are you all still together?" "Isn't it difficult to be in that situation willingly?" These are just a "few" of the questions I'm constantly asked about being in a long distance relationship (or as they are so lovingly known on social media as LDRs). Listen, some days, I don't know how we've managed to get THIS far either, but my response to all of this is, "clearly there's a lot of love between us, huh?"

There are SO many things I've learned from being in a long distance relationship, and have learned about myself as well as what my limits are, but here are a few of the key take-a-ways I've learned from being in a long distance relationship that could also be applied to long term relationships...

Keep the dependency LOW

Look, there are days I want to talk ALL day long, and there are other days where I'll only say two words... to anyone. It's about balance. I know we can go HOURS (again it's about balance) of not talking but when I see her name pop up on my screen, it makes my heart smile, and that, to me, is important.
Communication has to be Creative

Most conversations start with "how was your day?" or "What's the weather like on your side of the country?" but other times the conversations could revolve around current events and what we think about them or "I came across this BuzzFeed article that made me think of you". There are times the conversations get intense and our differences in opinions are night and day, and you know what? that's MORE than okay. I don't need (nor want) someone to agree with everything I believe in (how boring would that be?) but when it comes to the latter, the respect for the alternative opinion has to be there, and with us, it is very present. It's always good to keep the conversations interesting while finding that balance between intense & silly (I'm REALLY good at the silly part).

can you hear me now?

Avoid "Dangerous" Situations

If we know we are going out for an extended period of time that could potentially cut into our "end of day" phone call/FaceTime, two things always happen... 1. a phone call/text before going out to "reassure" the other person that they're thinking about you. 2. a text that you've made it home from your night out. It's not about taking away the independence of your significant other, but when we're 3000+ miles away, knowing you've made it home safely is more important than how your night was (that comes later, of course).

Plan a trip away from your respective "comfort zones"

As much as my heart lives on the East Coast, I love traveling to the West Coast. She's expressed her love for traveling to the East Coast. Sometimes it's okay to just get away from your home to be somewhere else for a period of time. But sometimes, it's also good to go to a place where neither one of you has been before or one of you has gone to, liked it a lot, and wants to share that with you. You learn A LOT about a person when you travel with them, but it also helps grow the relationship.

Care Packages are Cool

Sometimes I'll be on Amazon (sometimes??) and I'll come across something that reminds me of her, so I'll throw it in my cart and wait until pay day. The phone call/text I get when she's not expecting it might be the cutest thing I'll ever witness. Or the time she scoped out my Pinterest boards and bought something for me that was on my "wish list"... it's never been about the materialistic things, but who doesn't like a little snail mail from time to time? Little gestures like this help keep the "awww" in the relationship.

Honesty doesn't (and shouldn't) feel like a chore

Always always ALWAYS make it a point to stay as honest as possible, even if it might hurt to hear what the other person is saying. There isn't a moment where we feel we can't trust each other. The lines of communication are always open, so this is never a worry of mine... or hers! There will be times where the conversation will get uncomfortable and could very much feel as though you're being punched in the gut, but better to hurt by the truth than be destroyed by the latter, know what I mean, jelly bean?

Goal Setting is relatively Important

We know that we're not going to be in a long distance relationship forever. At some point, it will get "old" and we'll find a way to be in the same time zone. At the same time, we also know that we don't know exactly when that's going to happen and that's okay too. Talking about it/revisiting the conversations about what the future could look like are healthy, especially to know that even though we may not be on the same page, at least we're in the same book. Future talking can be fun, and there's no additional pressure from either party to make something happen immediately. We know we're in it for the long haul, so there's no current need to floor the gas pedal on it.

follow the (non-yellow brick) road? SURE!
I hope this has given you a little bit of "insight" on what it looks like to be in a long distance/long term relationship. I'm SUPER private with this stuff, but because I'm asked about it quite frequently, I figured I'd blog it. Besides, nothing is ever easy... if it were, it wouldn't be worth it!


Monday, August 31, 2015

"Out of School for 10+ years. This will be easy" said no one EVER!

The obvious says: "If you had told me that in my 'mid' 30s I'd be going back to school to get my masters, I would've thought you were crazy!".... Well a great deal of it holds true. Actually, all of it holds true. When I finished my undergrad in 2004 (damn!), I was DONE!… or so I thought. My first masters class starts in 2 days and a part of me just wants to get through the first day jitters and get them over with.
omg. Omg. OMG!
I'm not THAT scared. Nope. I'm petrified, in the best way possible. Being out of a classroom for 10+ years has a way of putting all of your fears to the forefront of your mind. For example, the thought of being in a class with those who are just out of undergrad… Though it's not a bad thing, I'm sure at some point, I will feel my age. Then again, my "experience" brings something unique to the table that these youngins can learn from.

Respect your elders, young one  
For those that don't know, I'm in the IMC (Integrated Marketing Communications) program at Emerson College (yeah, I KNOW!) & next two years are going to be quite the experience . I know what it's like to be busy, but this will definitely be a different kind of busy. When my friends call and ask if I wanna meet them for dinner, the answer will no longer be "I can't. I have dance/show"; it will shift to "I can't. I have a paper/homework!"

At the end of the day, and at the end of this experience, this is what growth is about. This is what it feels like to "grow up". Yes, it's going to hurt, but sometimes, it's beyond necessary.

I feel your pain Simba!
Keep in mind, I will still watch surf clips of Kelly Slater to decompress from an assignment (if you don't know him, google him, NOW!… wait, finish reading this, then go google him!). I will wear wear a Mickey Mouse shirt and dance down Boylston St. on my way to class. Growth can still occur while still remaining who you are. It's all about enjoying the experience. So for this experience, I am going to do my best to relinquish the control that I have a tendency to hold onto with an iron grip and just let whatever needs to happen, happen.

Good Luck to the Class of 2017! Let's DO this!

Monday, November 24, 2014

What you should NEVER say to someone with severe allergies... EVER!

For most of you reading this and know me, you know that my allergies are... a lot. <-- and that's putting it "mildly". For as long as I can remember, I've been allergic to life, except peanut butter. I still haven't been able to figure that one out. Anyway, over the course of my 30+ years, I've been asked a variety of questions about my allergies (food and year round... nope, I don't get seasonal. That's an every day occurrence for me... yay.)As I've grown and started to understand what I can and cannot do when it comes to my allergies, some of these questions I've been asked went from far fetch to "are you serious?". So here are a few you should NEVER say to someone with severe allergies... EVER! I mean, EVER!

It's all in your head.

Tell that to my hives & closing throat next time I have an allergy attack that it's 
"all in my head".

If you expose yourself to your allergen, your body will develop an immunity to it.
Placing myself around my allergens not only ruins my day, but it takes dayS for me to get back to some type of normalcy,... so placing myself amongst cats or being outside when flowers are in bloom, yeah, NOT gonna happen!

If you leave the room, won't you just get better right away?
If it were only THAT easy. Guess what? It's NOT! As mentioned above, it takes dayS for me to get back to some type of normalcy, and I start looking more like Katrina & less like Hitch. Meh...

Won't you just grow out of it?
 Despite what the "studies" show, not everyone's allergies change over the course of 7 years. For some of us "lucky" ones, we develop new allergies or the ones we already have seem to get worse over the course of time. So growing out of it? No. According to my body, I'm apparently just getting started!

Why do you have to be so picky?
 No, No, NO! Not even close. Trust me, I wish I could have scrambled eggs or a piece of blackberry pie, but guess what? NOT an option. It's not me that's picky. It's my immune system that affords me this "luxury".

Can't you just take a Benadryl? 
Despite what you might think, Benadryl is not a multivitamin for those of us with allergies (that's what Zyrtec is for). Even though Benadryl is a GREAT drug for minimizing the effects allergies, the side affects of it are less than desirable. Sure, I can take a Benadryl... when I get home and don't have any other type of a social obligations for the rest of the day... yup!

We didn't invite you because we figured you were allergic to the food.
Yup. This has happened. I know I should live in a bubble of some sort, but to not invite me somewhere because I might be allergic to food is a bit much. I can always get food after or if I know the menu ahead of time, I'll eat before hand. 
Rude... just Rude!

So despite what you think of those of us with allergies and how we live our lives, please please PLEASE reserve the judgment for something that's within our control. We can't help it any more than our bodies can. I wish I wasn't allergic to eggs or I didn't have to read Every Single Label to make sure there's no Aloe Vera in the products I want to use (Yes, I'm allergic to that too. Yay me!). I would love nothing more than to not be allergic to life. I'm sure you have things in your life when people ask about them, you're like "are you kidding me?" It's sort of the same thing. 

I'll jump off of my soap box now!