Tag Archives: Love

I didn’t realize love was conditional until I…

I used to think all real love was unconditional. I mean, isn’t that the point of love? That we give it wholly and without question? Isn’t that how a mother loves a child or a person loves a friend or anyone loves a beloved pet? And sure, there are exceptions. And sure, we can fall in and out of love. But when you think of being in that stereotypical kind of love, the kind that allows people to accept flaws or (heaven forbid) forgive abuse – that kind of love is, by definition, unconditional.

I was today years old, when I finally realized self-love is the most toxic and conditional form of love that I have come to know. And how screwed up is that? Not the fact that it took me this long to realize it, but the fact that, for whatever reason, when we talk about loving ourselves, 9/10 times, it is only skin deep.

When we talk about loving ourselves it isn’t a conversation of actually loving who we are, but how we look or how we feel about ourselves on that given day. A conversation of, will the world see me as beautiful today? Are my eyebrows on fleek? Do these high waisted jeans hide my gut, or show it? Am I as pretty as those girls? Am I showing too much skin? Will the guy/girl I like finally see me? Is my personality too much for my friends? And as if the idea of these kinds of questions weren’t disgusting enough – we then let them dictate how we feel about ourselves on that given day or that week or so on. And the bigger problem with all of it is that this lack of love in many of our lives is not a matter of normal insecurity – it goes deeper than that. It goes as deep as to say – I didn’t realize love was conditional until I realized that I’d rather hide from the world than be a part of it.

Now, to all the women who have never once thought this I solute you, but odds are, at one point or another all of us have felt this way. All have us have (at least once) preferred to stay in with a bottle of wine and a homecooked meal rather than put ourselves out there. And while self care could be a big part of that decision – ditching plans or secluding yourself from your friends shouldn’t be. Hiding yourself from the world, or behind positive social media posts shouldn’t be.

I think at some point or another we all just have a day that hits us a little harder than others. One where the “mirror mirror on the wall” can’t hype us up above them all. And I can’t speak for others but I know I have those days and they absolutely suck. They make me doubt who I am. And they make me doubt if I really love myself for who I am and all the amazing parts of me – or if I only love myself when I have a flat stomach and no stretch marks.

But here’s the news flash. NONE OF IT MATTERS. The way you look, the way you talk, the cute or weird way you laugh at EVERYTHING, none of that matters compared to who you are. WHO YOU ACTUALLY ARE. And don’t get me wrong I’m not saying the outside doesn’t serve a purpose at all – I mean candy bars have wrappers on them for a reason and it’s not just to make them look pretty (it’s a metaphor don’t think too deep into it.) it’s to protect what’s inside. So in a way, we also have wrappers because we need our outsides to protect our insides.

Look, at the end of the day it is so so easy to hate yourself for the little things. It’s easy to self deprecate and look down on yourself. What’s hard is coming to terms with who you are and realizing that that person is pretty incredible. And at the end of the day we’re all still learning to love ourselves unconditionally. But if we haven’t already, let’s be today years old when we start.

To the ones with weak spot syndrome

We all have a weak spot for someone. A friend, a family member, or a lover. We all have that one person we’d wait for – the one who could get away with murder and we’d forgive them.

Me, I have weak spot syndrome – and maybe you do too. For me it’s never one person but rather, a list. A list of people who enter and exit my life on a whim and yet I am always thinking of them. A list of people who I care about unconditionally no matter how much they hurt me or say things behind my back. Yeah I have weak spot syndrome – but maybe you do too. So this letter is for you.

To the ones with weak spot syndrome. Know that you are loved. Know that there is someone out there who will love you like you deserve someday. Know that it will be hard to let toxic people go. Know that you won’t be able to let certain people go but you have to.

To the ones with weak spot syndrome. I get it but not everyone will.

I know what it’s like to wait for a call, a text, or any form of acknowledgement. I know what it’s like to hurt when you don’t get it. And 95% of the time you won’t get it – because some people these days don’t understand what it’s like when someone on your list is begging to be removed but you can’t let them go.

To the ones with weak spot syndrome, know that this kind of burn is good. This kind of hurt is good. This kind of pain is what you need – because one day you will be able to let that person or people go.

and when you do

The feeling will be glorious.

5 things “the bachelor” teaches you about getting your man

The Bachelor. Many of us have seen it. Some of us haven’t, but whether you have or have not there is no denying the popularity of the bachelor brand. So today I thought I’d jump on the band wagon and do a little listicle.

5 things “the bachelor” has taught me about getting my man...

1. Every second counts: when faced with a game time scenario that time is yours. Seize the day to seize the guy.

In the bachelor we are quick to judge the girls that go back for seconds or thirds before others have gotten their fill. THIS IS NOT THANKSGIVING DINNER WITH YOUR FAMILIES LADIES. In this situation it’s time to act and act fast. When that first night comes around get after it. Show initiative by showing interest and take the time to get your time and get to know the guy you are out with.

2. Nurse your drink: when it comes to first dates most of them are bound to be awkward. But that doesn’t mean you can down three drinks and dance on the table.

Staying casual, composed, and interested (if it applies) should be the cornerstone rule of dating. And while this rule may not be possible for a room full of 30 girls chasing after one man – you are most likely not in a situation like that so stay cool and take it slow.

3. Look your best: ladies there are a lot of fish in that sea and while I am the first to skip makeup 5 out of 7 days a week dating is a meal best served with a side of “dayum I look good” so put your best foot forward. And whether that means mom jeans and a v neck or a full on gown and a full face of makeup well I’ll leave that up to you.

4. Don’t eat the food: (kidding!) back when I was 16 I went on my first date and as a precursor to that date I asked some friends for advice. One question I asked was about food… however, their advice to eat a salad or something that didn’t make me take my true form as a farm animal was not helpful.

When on a date in bachelor world you will notice that the girls don’t eat. This is apparently because filming takes so long that the food is out all day in gross conditions. It is for this reason that I would never survive the bachelor because my advice is to EAT LIKE NOBODY IS WATCHING

5. Be yourself: whether you are someone that dresses like a shark and calls yourself a dolphin or dresses like a princess and calls yourself “the BEAST” my best advice and the best lesson I learned from the bachelor is that you should always be yourself.

At the end of the day, whether you’re competing against 30 other women for one man or simply competing for the eye contact of one man trying to stare down your shirt – the most important thing to be is yourself because why? BECAUSE NO ONE ELSE IS GOING TO DO IT FOR YOU. DUH.

The closing credits

So whether you watch the bachelor or you don’t. Whether you think it’s good tv or trash best served with a glass of wine and a side of used tissues (some of us are lonely ok). There is a lot to be learned from the experience of watching 30 women cat fight over a single man until they are ultimately sent home.

New year no resolutions

Growing up I took New Years as a sort of shooting star meets genie in a bottle. A single night to make a wish or three for the next 365 days to follow.

When I was younger (and more selfish than I am now) I used to wish for a first kiss, a first love, a first … Well the list goes on, but this year (the second or third where I didn’t even make it to midnight) I’m finding myself a different tune to sing.

This year I’m not making resolutions. 1- because they are bull sh** (no offense) and 2- because making a big elaborate promise to myself or a wish on a “shooting star” to get the guy or figure out who I am or invest in my 401k (which I will do… when I have the money) or even break bad habits isn’t something that should only manifest on one single day in a whole year.

I mean think about it. We wait a whole year, for one night, just to get drunk off our asses and ring in the new year with a bad hangover and hazy memories of the clock striking midnight. We stay up all night – way past my bed time – to test this sort of Cinderella effect where we prove or disprove that we can stay a princess for a couple more hours, or days, or weeks. We wait all year – where we are constantly evolving and growing and becoming the person we want to be, just to make a wish that we can skip the hard work and turn pumpkins into carriages over night. IT DOESN’T WORK THAT WAY.

And look I hate to be a cynic. (A little) but I’d also prefer to be a realist.

For me 2019 was one of the most challenging years of my life (and yes I’m young so it seems inconsequential but it’s not). BUT it was also the year where I grew the most. Challenged myself the most. Ended jobs and started new ones. Lost friends and made new ones. Searched for love when I didn’t understand how to love myself first. And yeah in a lot of ways, and form the outside looking in, you could say it sucked – and in some ways it did – but for me, while 2019 was not the best year of my life – it was exactly what I needed and no resolutions to get fit or get kissed did that… I did.

I don’t know if I believe in destiny, I don’t know if I believe in the big man in the sky, and I sure as hell don’t know if I believe in fate because that gets twisted real quick… what I do believe in though, is me.

I believe that 2020 could be the best year of my life but I don’t want it to be. I want it to be hard and frustrating and full of wins AND losses. And I’m not resolving to make any of this happen. I’m just going to feel it out day by day and make changes up as I go. Because Adulting and living aren’t about one night to define them all – they’re about a whole new year to write and re-write the narrative.

So here’s to 2020 and the promise to make no promises and take no prisoners.

Dear decade

Dear decade, this will be our last letter. The last time I say hello and you goodbye. The last time I try to comprehend what happened over the course of 9 years. And the first time I admit that, though none of it was perfect – all of it was what I needed.

Dear decade, the past nine years have been full of goodbyes, good mornings, and hello’s. It’s been filled with – “nice to meet you”s and “sorry to see you go”s.

In the past decade I became an adult – a real full fledged adult. I’ve graduated high school and college and my masters. I’ve started a blog and now a clothing line to go with it (got that one in right under the wire). I moved away from home, stayed in touch with old friends and lost touch with new ones. I gave speeches and monologues and rants and (yeah I talked a lot).

But I gave up a lot too.

I said goodbye to my father – and the dreams that come with having one. I lost the man to walk me down the aisle and dance with me at my wedding.

But through it all I didn’t give up hope.

I said hello to new dreams. Cheered family on through weddings and graduations and babies being born. I persevered through pain and I fought my biggest enemy (myself)

So decade, I guess you could say I did ok. I made it through. I had victories and losses and championship moments that I wouldn’t give up for the world. Yeah I guess you could say I did it – we – did it. We made it through. And decade, that’s all either of us could have asked for.

– R

The block list

So you did it. You done f’ed up. You texted or called or tweeted or snapped that one person you shouldn’t have – and they RESPONDED. S***. Now what?

Step 1 : remain calm. Don’t overthink it. Maybe it’s an ex and you’re feeling the post holiday “why are you single conversations” maybe you just wanted to talk to someone familiar. It’s ok. It’s normal to want that.

Step 2 : keep it casual. Resist the urge to make plans. Don’t agree to coffee or a call. Just go with the flow and wish that person well.

Step 3 : the exit. Try something like. “It was nice to hear from you” or since it’s the holidays “wish your family a happy holidays for me.” Then leave it at that.

Step 4 : the rehab. Coming back from a convo with an ex is hard and it’s exhausting sometimes. Take some time to bow out. Or spend time with family. Let yourself live in it for a bit – then let it go. (Easier said than done)

Look at the end of the day we all just want to remain connected to people. Social media makes this easy but it also makes it easy to get caught up in the drama of “what is he/she up to” and “I wonder if they’re thinking about me too”. But at the end of it all we need to take care of ourselves and the ones who are still in our lives first.

Take care of yourself this holiday season and remember that the people who are in your life are lucky to be there just like you are lucky to be present in their lives. And if you are home try not to get caught up in your past by digging it up.

In other words keep your friends close and your block list waaaaaay out of reach.

The problem with love in my generation

So about a week ago, after watching a rom com I started writing a post that was nothing short of crazy cat lady crazy. (Not to worry, I culled the crazy)

In this post, I talked about love and how it was the princes that I haven’t kissed were the ones I regretted more than the frogs I had. I talked about unrequited love and how our lives are defined by the chances we don’t take when it comes to love.

BUT – it wasn’t until my car ride home from work the next day that I realized why I had cat lady spiraled – ok maybe not a reason, but at the very least it was a much more constructive way of writing in which I didn’t confess an undying love that only occurs to me when I am lonely (aka not love but loneliness).

Thus I GIVE YOU (drumroll) … The problem with love in my generation.

See in my generation it seems that we have “love” or rather “lust” at our fingertips. If we are lonely we swipe, bored? We swipe, in need of human intimacy? You guessed it. We cue up the options and swipe our way into someone’s bed.

Today it’s easier than ever to find someone for whatever you need in the moment. But the problem with this? It doesn’t last. And that isn’t just because someone’s bio takes away the romance or the mystery of meeting someone on the street or at a bar. It’s because that craving for someone to love or lust us takes away from the one thing the internet can’t immediately gratify.

TODAY WE LACK THE ABILITY TO LOVE OURSELVES FIRST – and no ladies I’m no talking about the Hailee Steinfeld song kind of “love yourself” I’m talking no likes no views see yourself in the mirror and dig what you see before you ask some guy or girl to validate.

Look at the end of the day validation is great. But kissing frogs and finding princes/princesses doesn’t do a damn thing if you can’t find yourself first.

The problem with my generation is that love isn’t like the movies and while getting caught up in the theatrics every once in a while is great it doesn’t fix the problem. The problem that we don’t give ourselves enough love or honest communication to ever give it to someone else.

These days were caught up in trying not to be lonely that we make a lot of wrong turns. Some of us end up in short term marriages, some in abusive relationships and others well those lucky little craps find something real. At the end of the day it comes down to luck and love – not luck for finding someone or love of someone but luck and love in knowing and loving ourselves.

Why you should never date the guy who comes to you with other girl drama

Mom never warned you about him. The home grown, grass fed, US of A home town hero. He was raised on the Sandlot, on mallo’s and grahams – he’s the guy next-door, brought up on good ol’ fashioned values and he can’t catch a break with women but he really likes you. Sound familiar?

He’s the one that calls you about all the other girls, spends nights sitting with you talking about how awful girls can be, as if you after surviving high school and middle school knew nothing about how girls could be.

You sympathize, and he likes that. But then he takes kindness for infatuation and before you know it he takes a swing and aims for the outfield expecting you to catch his heart on the pop fly.

Of course, there is nothing wrong with this. With guys trusting girl friends, with guys being vulnerable and opening up – in fact that should be encouraged more, but it is the tone they use that defines the relationship that will follow.

He isn’t Friendzoned but he’s headed that way

Until this point you’ve always been that friend, that girl, that “DUFF” of sorts that agrees with him, that hypes him up and gives him the confidence he needs. But when he asks you out… well.

Alright ladies, I know you have all been there. You all have that hopeless romantic guy friend who – despite seeming like one of the nicest humans out there can’t seem to catch a break when it comes to the ladies. I have at least 5 in my life at any time. But – then you take the leap, you go out, and… yeeeeahhh.

Enter – the Friendzone

First dates don’t always work out. If they did a lot more of us would be madly in love and a lot more trusting of our emotions. But they often head more toward the friend zone than the romantic zone.

Don’t date this one

Truth is, I have spent years going for the ones that go for me like a shark in bloodied water. But none of the relationships work out. At the end of the day you can’t date the ones that complain about other girls. Date the one who talks fondly of others and be the person they talk fondly about.

At the end of the day it isn’t about what they gave you, how much the dinner cost or how or if it ended. It’s about the experience. So go after the ones that experience life. Not the ones who dwell on its shortcomings.

The Confessions of a Washed Up Track Star

In sports, when the buzzer goes, the game ends.

So I guess the most confusing part of my sport is that – when the gun fires, we don’t stop, we go. When the clock starts, we run, we throw, we decide when to start the jump, the throw, the race – and then we decide what line to finish on and whether or not we want to keep our mark – or scratch it.

In my sport, we don’t have a final buzzer. We leave the end open- ended and because of this… well maybe that is why I can’t see an end to what I feel as though I barely started.

I Never Saw It In A Dream – But it Became Real

Five years ago – I didn’t dream of being here. I never imagined that I would be good enough to be where I am. But, I also never thought it would hurt this much to leave.

When your race ends, you walk away. In 5 years I have watched countless people walk away when it was their time to, but I never thought that watching them walk meant losing what it meant to be a part of a true and cohesive team.

One Team – No Longer a Dream

Three years ago I was part of a team, one that cheered and pushed and expected things of one another. Three years ago I was part of something bigger than myself, but today it just feels like I’m chasing that feeling like a dream deferred.

What happens to a dream deferred?

     Does it dry up
     like a raisin in the sun?
     Or fester like a sore—
     And then run?
     Does it stink like rotten meat?
     Or crust and sugar over—
      like a syrupy sweet?

     Maybe it just sags
      like a heavy load.

      Or does it explode?


We all know the feeling of a dream deferred. The feeling of watching something you love slip through your finger tips like the string of a balloon leaving your hand at a crowded park with no one to save it as it flies away.

I never thought of Track and Field as my dream deferred – I never thought of it as something that could turn sour, but today, as I watch something rot and crust and sag – I realize that this love, like all others in my life have blinded me to how broken it is.

I Cannot and Do Not Win Without Them – And THIS is why We Do Not Win at all.

People assume that Track is a solo sport – It isn’t, but then again you cannot spell “Field” without “I” and I often feel that the Field part of Track and Field is forgotten – so maybe it fits. Because some times outside of my squad I feel like an I in a crowd of we’s.

It’s funny though.

The word team doesn’t have “I” in it – but if you re-arrange the letters it can say “ME”. And when I realize that, it gets me thinking how “We” turned into “Me” and “me” turned into a losing battle against myself.

A No Win Situation

Most days I ask questions I shouldn’t, ones that lead my coach to tell me to keep my nose out of it. But I personally cannot sit on my hands and be happy when this is not the team I signed up for.


These are My Confessions

Today I am stuck. I am stuck watching people suffer because the sport they fell in love with is pushing them away as quickly as it held them close and honestly, I never thought it would be like that because two or three years ago it wasn’t.

Today I’m stuck. Stuck watching some fall to over confidence and others fail by not believing in themselves.

Today I’m waiting for something I used to have. Questioning if it was ever real in the first place and wondering if team is made by bonds among friends or by coaches who refused to take our shit.

Today I feel like I’m teetering on the edge of washed up and irrelevant, but tomorrow everything could change.

In Other Sports

In other sports we are made to stop when the buzzer fades, when the teams walk off the court – but in my sport we decide when to cross the finish line and while I can see mine inching closer, I still have too much to do to admit that it’s over.

In other sports they leave everything on the court, but in my sport I take control and me? I’ve just begun.

To My Future Daddy’s Girl

Dear Sweetheart, Sweetie Pie, Punkin, Daughter,

The day you arrive, I pray your father will have it more together than me. I pray that he looks at you like he looked at me every day we waited for you – minus the fear in his eyes when he brought me the wrong food and I couldn’t help but yell, ‘how do you not know what she wants!’ To which he will reply – ‘I am not a seahorse, she isn’t in me – that’s your…’ and he will stop there because he will know better than to mess with your mother when she’s pregnant.

My sweet baby girl, I am not religious, but when I think about my future – well let’s just say “there’s no atheist in a fox hole” and baby girl you will be the whole damn war.

To my future Daddy’s girl, I pray your father will look at you, like mine did at me. Staring into your eyes and seeing the universe and all its potential – smiling like everything he ever wanted fits in the palms of his hands. And I hope beyond hope that he has enough memories with you to last you three lifetimes over because the time you spend together, brief or long will carry you through your darkest days.

Dear Baby Girl, right now, you and me are AT LEAST 15 years and a loving husband short of meeting one another. You and I are a world and a war away but that doesn’t make me doubt that the family I am dreaming of will be anything less than the greatest adventure of my life.

To my sweet baby girl – one day I will be ready for you. And when that day comes, nothing will keep me away.

Why children are the best hype team you could ever ask for

need a quick self-esteem boost? hang out in an elementary school for a day

Think I’m joking?  Let me tell you a bit about what I experience at my job…

To start, kids see everything.  And believe it or not, they understand everything too.  It may be in a different way than adults, but they understand.

And they REMEMBER.

Upon first meeting, you might be greeted with a “whoa, you’re really pretty,” and “wait, how are you not married?? You’re so pretty!” and so the first few minutes of the school day turn into life lesson time.

After that, they’ll ALWAYS comment when you change your hair, or your nail color, or wear different shoes, or get a new sweater (or wear the same one two weeks in a row – oops).  But they will also always tell you how much they love having you around.

Seriously, they’ll always compliment you.  It might be 30 seconds after they threw a pair of scissors at you, but they’ll do it.  How many of your adult friends do that??

(hopefully none of them throw things at you.  if they do, please find new friends).


When you’re absent for just a day and you come back to swarms of “where were you?” “why didn’t I see you” and “I missed you!” And when they see you leaving for the day they holler from across the room “bye! I love you!”

From time to time, they’ll call you ‘mom’ or ‘dad,’ and get embarrassed when they realize their mistake.  Just last week I had a first grade girl call me ‘mom’ by accident, and when she noticed, she just said “well I love you like I love my mom, so same thing, right? anyway can you help me read this word?”

Sometimes they’ll just tell you they want you to be their mom instead of who they have now.  Then you need to discuss how they love their mom and just wish for you to be in their lives, which you MUST promise you will be ‘forever and ever’ before turning back to the task at hand.

Image result for pinky promise

Or when you get to work with your hair up and no makeup because you just couldn’t get out of bed in time that morning, and a student says to you “how do you look so gorgeous today?” and you cant help but smile.

Because they aren’t just your normal friends being polite, they genuine believe it.

Maybe there’s that preschooler who ALWAYS asks to see what color your coffee is (because that one time you brought in matcha tea and it was green, her face was absolutely priceless).  And eventually they notice when you come in lacking said coffee cup, and ask if you need to go run out and get one before we start class because they know how much you love it (and how it keeps you ‘happy’).  So the sarcastic first grader offers to watch your class this morning while you run to the coffee shop – as if you’d let him be in charge for but a second.

When they use their free time to write you a book (with only pictures, of course) but their face lights up with pride when you smile and ‘read’ it with them.

Do your adult friends write/draw you personalized picture books for fun?  No?  Hmm.


Or when you finally change out of that sweater and wear colorful clothing, your whole day is filled with 2nd graders saying “I like your pants, I like your shoes.” They, naturally, start mimicking each other so you end up with 15 kids spending 3 whole minutes of class just telling you how much they like your outfit.

When they see you in the morning and their tiny little legs wind up and start running over to you, huge smile across their face, and you brace for them to ram into you in an attempt at a big hug.
How many of your adult friends give you running start hugs so you can embrace and lift them off the ground, all while giggling like it’s the best thing that’s happened to them all week?


With my job, some days I have to be a caring mom.
Some days, I have to be the strict mom.
Some days, I have to be the typical teacher and make them actually learn a thing or two.
Some days, I have trouble getting out of bed so early in the morning, to wear one of these hats for 25+ children, that aren’t even my own.
But by week 2, they feel like my own, and they make me want to get up every day.

They have their tantrums, and defiant moments.
They have their sick days and sneeze on your face.

But they never fail to do some small thing, a small act of kindness, a small sentence or the tiniest hint of showing you how much they love you.

You – their surrogate parent.
You – their caretaker for almost 10 months of the year.
You – the one they come to and listen to and love with their little hearts, because they know you love them right back.
You – who knew you wouldn’t be able to get through they day without at least one of them making you crack a smile.

Because as much as we love our adult friendships, working with children gives you the most adorable, no-strings attached hype team for life.

And I think we could all stand to learn a bit about this kindness and love from the tiny humans.

baby children cute dress
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

A letter to my Father

Dear dad

Yesterday I turned 23 and for the first time in a while my birthday wasn’t a reminder of you getting diagnosed. For the first time in a long time it wasn’t the 3 month mark of hitting another year without you. For the first time in a long time I was able to just be happy and love where I am.

Dear dad,

I miss you. I miss you everyday. But this year I have been making the kinds of choices that you would be proud of. I have been working harder and smarter and taking better care of my body because I want to live a long enough life to give you the journeys you missed by leaving us so young.

Dear dad,

Yesterday I turned 23 and I wish you were there. I wish you could have seen all the love and joy that surrounded me. I wish you could have seen the incredible people I surround myself with because if you could, you would be so proud.

Dear dad,

Today I compete in my last winter track meet and as my college athletic career comes to a close this year, I simply could not be more grateful for all it and you have given me by allowing me to be your daughter.

Dear dad,

Thank you for the best present a person could ask for. Thank you for giving me the strength to be the woman you raised me to be and thanks for showing me that love is earned and deserved rather than simply given.

Dear dad,

I’m 23 – and it’s crazy.

Dear dad, I love you. And I can’t wait to show you what I have left in store for this final stretch of this chapter in my life.

This year I’m gonna make you proud but you know what else? This year I’m gonna make myself proud too.