Archive for the perfect brightness of hope Category

the days are just packed.

Posted in bridal diaries, domestic goddess, forward my mail, going quietly mad, me, perfect brightness of hope, the engaged life, the glass is half FULL, the joys of living in Florida on July 30, 2009 by drbolte

today we got our marriage license.

as we were sitting there, signing documents and giving social security numbers and attesting to the accuracy of the information we had provided by raising our right hand and swearing that it was all true, i realized that this is the one time i’ll do that.

that was cool.

tomorrow marks the beginning of the big move. because of a series of what can only be described as hilarious timing debacles, i have to turn in my keys for this apartment by noon and can only pick up the keys to the new place at noon. so we’ll be loading all of my earthly possessions, save a few essentials and my mattress, into a uhaul cargo van tomorrow night.

i had been a bit worried about the move. there’s nothing like smashed toes and heavy boxes to bring out the very best of your personality, you know? but we had a heap of stuff to take to goodwill today, in the death humid hot, and we did it cheerfully.  my beloved bff doesn’t even seem to mind my procrastination or my need to do things my way and in my timeframe.  in fact, he seems to understand it and quickly falls into whatever helpful role i need him to fill.

it’s been wonderful.

i opened my wedding dress garment bag last night and saw, right before my eyes on the bodice, a small stain. the stain saga with my dress has thus far been confined to the sash, which is a really long story not worth rehashing because my future mil picked it up and said it’s perfect now, but now apparently there is one on the bodice of my perfectly white dress.  it’s smaller than a pencil eraser and is tan, not black or red or anything absurd. it would probably not even be noticeable.

but i noticed.

and i cried.  in fact, if i have cried hard about anything related to problems, stress, and misunderstandings related to the wedding, it was this. as the bff held me and i cried for my two minute freakout, i said “i just wanted one thing to be perfect–and it was my dress.”

you well know that i am trying very hard not to sweat the small stuff about the wedding.  but i wanted my dress to be perfect–at least for those initial moments that he sees me, that we take pictures, that we bask in the fact that we are now married forever and for always, no ifs ands or buts.  i don’t care about much anything else. if it rains, okay. we’ll figure it out.  if something goes wrong with the sound system, we’ll figure it out.  if the cupcakes are hideous, we’ll figure it out.

but my dress. ohmydress.

so i freaked out a little bit. he let me. and then he told me that he was absolutely sure that i was going to be exquisitely gorgeous and that we’d figure it out.  he’s right about the last part. mom comes on tuesday, i talk to her on sunday, and we’ll figure out what i should do.

or maybe i’ll just forget about it and realize that it, like me, is a bit flawed but nonetheless perfect for him and for that day.

i wanted to write a deep post about leaving and moving on and the strangeness of a house that is now in transition, about going by the new apartment and seeing that it’s empty and beginning to picture us there and thoughts of flower boxes and decorating, about moving on and moving out and moving closer to the rest of my life, about how strange it will be to be the last one in my apartment, the last night of my old life essentially, about how awed i am by the generosity of people i don’t even know, about how all of my fears are systematically being eliminated because of faith exercised so often and begun so long ago that it is now as familiar and subtly essential as breath.

but i can’t really do that yet.  maybe when i’m sitting in an entirely empty apartment, those thoughts will coherently come to me.  but right now, like the rest of my house, they are sitting in heaps and piles, to be sifted through and organized.

so much is happening. so fast.  and yet the miracle is that time has slowed just enough for me to do an insanely ridiculous amount of work in a short, short time.  but the true miracle is that i am recognizing all of the big stuff amid the petty chaos.

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tangential thoughts.

Posted in bff, bridal diaries, drama drama drama, faith is action, family, going quietly mad, me, perfect brightness of hope, the engaged life, will work for food on May 11, 2009 by drbolte

meet my mimi.

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(and yes, that’s me. adorable, eh?)

i have told you about her before. i’ve told you about the last few months of her life, too. i’ve told you about how all of my baking and cooking skills come from her, and about how i miss her.

this weekend, we were in orlando for mother’s day. and on sunday, one of the bff’s grandmothers came over to eat dinner with his family.  i’ve been around her several times now, and really very much like her. she’s scrappy and fiery and i dig that about her. i see how his dad is who is he because of her influence.

but i came away on sunday night feeling oddly tired and somewhat sad, which i realized is kind of common after a big bff family gathering. and i only yesterday realized that it was because i miss my family.

i really do. i miss my family.

but being around his grandmother makes me miss my mimi even more.

she would LOVE this time of my life. i feel certain she loves it from where she is.  but, at her prime, she would have been all up in the preparations, taking over the sewing of table squares and the construction of my bolero and the alterations on my dress. everything that she could have done, she would have done because that’s who she is.

i miss her very much.

my days are much busier now.

i am in training for a new part-time online job, and it’s going pretty well i think.  but it is a timesucker if ever there was one, though i can’t say i wasn’t warned by my recruiter that that would be the case. i think i’m managing quite well, but i don’t know how to fit everything in. i haven’t touched my dissertation in a week and a half because of it, and now i’m beginning to wonder how to fit everything else in.

my days go a little something like this: wake up. read my scriptures. shred if i’m going to shred (my goal is now to do it three days a week..it really does get results). breakfast and emails and google reader. training. shower and dressed.  usually about this time, i have to be somewhere, like an appointment or something. errands need to be run or something needs to get done. then it’s bff time, with dinner and assorted other activities taking up the rest of the night.  lately, it’s been wedding stuff.  i feel certain that more wedding stuff will continue to take up time.

i am tired.

already.

and i haven’t even started work yet. and it isn’t even summer b, when everything really hits me.

sigh.

i’m still going though. often, the bff and i look at each other, when we’re exhausted but don’t want to leave, and say that it will be nice to be married because then we can sleep.  sounds less romantic, perhaps, than what you would think of with newlyweds, but it will be nice to just be able to not ever leave.

ever.

nothing says your wedding is getting close and really real than going to get a birth control prescription–and knowing that you’ll actually be using it for its intended purpose.  what the heck.

i’m still looking for jobs. i know i’m not alone (holla job seekers! we should commiserate someday. is the exhaustion from that? are you all tired too?), and i know that i will be taken care of.

walking by faith is hard.  i’m not whining.  please don’t read that with whining voice.

read that as a bit of a determined, stoic “walking by faith is hard” and then a full stop.

and then a moving on.

have i mentioned my new penchant for burning myself?

in the last 48 hours, i  have burned myself twice while cooking and pinched the heck out of my finger tonight using tongs.

(another reason why i hate tongs. they are my kitchen nemesis.)

i may or may not have said “i give up.” and cried a little in the kitchen while i did the dishes. because there was really nothing else to do or be done. sometimes, you just have to give in.

directly after giving in, i got some really good hugs from the bff, who told me that today had not been the best day. he basically gave me permission to cry and yet the moment he did, i felt the need to cry go away. instead, i began to smile a little and pretty soon he had me laughing.

it was a classic awesome husband move, if i know what classic awesome husband moves are.

and i may not–yet.

but that, in a nutshell, is why he is the most amazing, most wonderful, most perfect-for-me guy there is. and why everything that is hard and difficult and uncomfortable and stressful and crazy about planning this wedding is worth it. because, in the end, it matters not what the twinkle lights look like or how much tulle is draping the food table. it doesn’t matter if i use an aisle runner for our ring ceremony or if everyone loves the look of the reception hall.

what matters is that, forever, we will be there to hug each other when we’re having bad days and cheer for each other during the good days. what matters is that i can cry on his shoulder and he doesn’t tell me to suck it up. he just hugs me harder and tells me it’s okay.

that is why i’m marrying him.

that is what matters.

and that’s my monday. how’s yours?

third interview. good grief, can i get a JOB already?

Posted in etcetera, going quietly mad, Life, me, perfect brightness of hope, someday I'll be a real middle class girl, teaching on April 21, 2009 by drbolte

so i went on a third interview this morning at 8:30 a.m.

yes, i got up at 7 a.m. for the first time in i legitimately don’t know how long unless it was when i had to wake up at like 3 a.m. to go to arizona.  or when i had to wake up at 5:30 to go to orlando.

okay, so maybe it’s not that rare of an occurrence, but it felt like it so i was impressed with myself.

(but you don’t have to be.)

i got there on time and i guess i felt fairly confident.  i had done very well in the previous two interviews, really quickly striking up a camaraderie with the two other interviewers which put me at ease and made it feel really like it was just a good solid conversation. this one wasn’t quite as easy, but by the end i felt solidly like he liked me.

i think it’s a good sign when they start talking about the position as if it was already yours (i.e. you’d be an advisor, etc.). i had grand and probably misplaced hopes that somehow, miraculously, it would turn into a full-time teaching position, but those were fairly substantially rubbed out today. i’m not upset. i think part time will be good so that i can still work elsewhere/get my dang dissertation done.

as i was thinking back over the interview as i was driving home, i realized that i think the turning point for me was when i spoke fairly passionately about how when you’re teaching middle school, you’re teaching not just subject matter but how to be a citizen, an adult, a person in the world.  that you have to model the behaviors that you hope that your students will adopt. that it’s okay to apologize to a parent when you’ve done something stupid or shortsighted–that, in fact, that can be the best thing to do.  that these middle school years are some of the best and most important years of a child’s life.

and i wasn’t being at all insincere. i genuinely believe all of that, and i really very much want to put into practice the things that i talked about.

now if only they would just give me the chance.  i understand why this process has been long and protracted–i have learned very much about myself and about leaning on the Lord and about developing my faith–but i am growing tired. not fearful. i know everything will work out. i’m just tired. i would like to have some things resolved sooner rather than later.

there are many details to be taken care of…i hope this one resolves itself very soon.

and in my favor.

keep your fingers crossed. keep the prayers coming.

thanks.

conquering this day.

Posted in bridal diaries, dissertation, domestic goddess, etcetera, i am not a gym rat, i love my life, me, mirror mirror on the wall, perfect brightness of hope, the engaged life, the glass is half FULL on March 30, 2009 by drbolte

i woke up with hopes of getting a lot done today. i quickly felt daunted by how to do it all and fit it all in.  they’re all such disparate tasks–everything from stadium stairs/ramps and a mega cardio workout to harassing my apartment building into finally submitting the stuff for the new apartment to lighting a fire under my butt and starting the dissertation again to talking to my mom about the wedding and life and everything since i haven’t talked to her in a week–and it felt impossible to really do them all.

that’s a pretty common theme in my life. i do okay if in one day i am asked to do three things that are all common–laundry, clean the house, cook dinner–but if you ask me to use different skill sets, i start to wonder if it’s possible.

i’m not sure if that’s pretty universal. is it?  i’m not sure if i’ll ever get better at it.  will i?

but what i know is that when i start thinking that way, everything gets colored by the stress crayon and i start to see things in a completely skewed way. i don’t love it.

so here i am again, focusing on the positive.  and updating you.  see? i’m multitasking already.

1. found a dress this weekend.  it was the cheapest one that i tried on. it fit PERFECTLY. it was simple, elegant, and beautiful, it had everything that i wanted but never knew i imagined that i did want.  i can picture getting married in it.  and i cried a little. oh. and it’s on sale.  🙂 did i mention that i looked small?

2. found a reception site. it’s perfect. it has a really good homey feel to it–not too spread out and big, not too small.  it has hooks in the walls already so that we can hang lights and do all kinds of things.  we figured out how we want to set it up and it was an amazing feeling, planning the day with the  man that i love.

3. i went to the stadium this morning, even though i thought that i would skip it. success number one.  i burned 757 calories. success number two. i ran some, in several interval spurts, and i felt lighter on my feet than i really ever have.  no trudging, really.  success number three.

4. i’m about to go make this new apartment thing happen, since i’m tired of waiting on the incompetence of the world.

5. i’m not letting the fact that i am seriously and 100% plateaued with the weight loss freak me out too much.  all i can do is all i can do, right? i just REALLY want to be mega hott for my wedding.  all i can do is all i can do.

reasons why today is definitely NOT sucking.

Posted in bff, domestic goddess, faith is action, i love my life, perfect brightness of hope, superheckyes, the glass is half FULL on March 18, 2009 by drbolte

if you’re my friend on facebook, you know that i had a lead on a RIDICULOUSLY cheap apartment ($395 a month for a one bedroom) that wasn’t actually in the scary gang-infested, graffiti-laden, i-can’t-possibly-be-home-alone-without-a-really-big-dog-or-a-loaded-gun ghetto.

(and, yes, i looked there. and yes, i was afraid. and, yes, maybe that makes me less of a person but whatever.)

it was a miracle that i found it, randomly, one night at 2 a.m. when i felt inspired–no, a better word is impressed–to check around for apartments. see, my lease is up in august and i need a place to live and i need it to not cost $100 million because, you know, i’ll be out of school soon and so will have to start paying the student loans back and i don’t have a job yet.

so, you know, the cheap apartments are top on my priority list.  being not homeless is also one of them.

when i found this place, it seemed perfect.  had been recently renovated, had pictures of the inside, and the address to drive by it so that i could see that it wasn’t in the scary ghetto…just in the rundown ghetto. which i am totally down with, jeans and flip flop and lower middle class aspiration girl that i am.

so i made an appointment  to see it.  and in the 36 hours between when i saw the outside and i got to see the inside, i was worried. wouldn’t EVERYONE jump on this deal? wouldn’t this be just the hugest hottest commodity on the gville real estate market? wouldn’t EVERYONE want to see it?

so i went today, with the bff, to see it.

and it was PERFECT.

closets for miles. i’m serious. one entire wall of the apartment, almost from front door to back wall, is closets.  with deep shelves. a storage closet, for all of your miscellaneous cleaning tools.  an enormous linen closet with heaps of deep shelves. two closets in the bedroom, with hanging rails AND shelves.  i mean seriously. it could not have been more perfect.

the carpet is beige and relatively new and in really good shape.  the place had a good vibe, was clean, and had lots of light.

it felt like it could be home really easily. i really really want to make it a home.

the worst thing about it? was a really, really old oven.

and seriously? if that’s the worst thing about it?  i can completely deal.

so the real estate guy was all “you don’t want to make a decision now…think about it and come by the office and fill out an application.” and i was like “uhm…applications are done. can i write you a check for the fee?”

and then i asked the golden question: how many people had looked at it?

we were the first.

and, here’s hoping, the last.

it’s an answer to many a prayer, and i am SO grateful.

so that’s checked off.  moving on to the next challenge.  and boy howdy do i have some coming up…

Posted in bff, dissertation, domestic goddess, etcetera, faith is action, family, i am not a gym rat, i love my life, i promise you that you won't care, me, perfect brightness of hope, sigh, teaching, the glass is half FULL on February 24, 2009 by drbolte

my coworker has been working with a client for AN HOUR AND FIFTEEN MINUTES.

appointments are 30 minutes long.

excuse me while my head implodes and i shake my fist at the heavens. this is why students think we can read dissertations in one appointment.  but will i say anything?  probably not.

because i am the queen of nonconfrontational.

all hail the queen.

ANYWAYS…

.

.

.

.

yeah, i just pushed the screen up so no one would see what i wrote over my shoulder.  hahahahahanonconfrontational.

i have something to say about confidence.

i needs some.

not that i don’t have it. i do. but i have these random moments where, like eels or something else that’s equally slimy and impossible to hold on to (treasures at the end of the book of mormon maybe? hahahahahamormonjoke), it slips through my fingers and i spend far too much time scrambling to grasp it once more.

now before you’re all “listen. i’m tired of hearing about how you can’t do stuff…it’s BORING and you CAN so stop it,” this confidence of which i speak isn’t really the confidence to start something–it’s the confidence to believe that the decisions i make every day in balancing my life and the people around me are actually good, actually right, without regard to what anybody else thinks.

basically, i’m trying to abandon the guilt.

oh the guilt. you know it. the mighty weight of what you perceive to be other people’s expectations.  the albatross of wanting to make everybody happy.

let’s kill that albatross, shall we?

i think that sometimes and then i realize…but wait. these are the people that i actually WANT to make happy.  i want them to be happy. i want people to know that they are special to me, important and loved, but i also want to be able to choose how i do that rather than feeling like i need to conform to what i’ve done before.

does that make ANY sense at all?

i’m not sure that it does, but i realized over the past few weeks that unless i make decisions consciously and deliberately and then STICK BY THEM, knowing that i am doing all that i can and i am not neglecting anybody purposefully but am simply trying to do what i need to do, what i think is most important right now in my life, then i will be forever bowed down by the weight of the not-good-enoughs.

because, let’s be real.

nobody can do everything.

anybody who says that they can is selling you a bill of goods for a product you’ll never receive.

people can do lots of things well.  some days, they may even get everything on the to-do list done.  but nobody can do everything perfectly. nobody can split themselves in one hundred different pieces and feel whole at the end of the day.

i just don’t believe it.

so i’m choosing which days i’ll split myself into what pieces and for whom.  and those decisions will change based on need and situation and circumstance, with a few staying always.  and i will incorporate all of the things that are important to me.  let me tell you what the number one thing has to be.  the number one piece of my life has got to be Heavenly Father.

i realized last week in all the running around and being crazy that i wasn’t praying like i needed to. i wasn’t studying the scriptures like i should be and often do. i wasn’t making that a priority, at all times and in all things and in all places.

falling down on the job of being a disciple, i was.

no more.  so the first piece of me, like the first tenth of my money, goes to Him.  i feel good about that.  i know that, just like with my money, if i do that there will always be pieces enough to go around.

the next piece is me and the bff. accomplishing all of the things that we want to do.  putting time in for me–exercising, even on a broken toe.  eating right.  doing fun things. spending time together.  it’s important. it’s probably one of the most important things i can figure out how to do every day. i feel like i’m pretty great at the bff part. it’s the balancing me in there that needs some tweaking.

the next piece is school.  i will dedicate time to it.  i will finish this thing.  even if it kills me. and it really might. and when that is done, it will be a job. possibly several jobs.  work.  work. work.

there are a lot of other pieces–family, church, visiting teaching, friends, work, cleaning the house (why? WHY?), etc.–but they’re all just pieces. i guess my point is, as much talking to myself as to anybody else, is that the wholeness as i have defined it thus far perhaps is irrational. nobody can do everything every day.  nobody can get everything done perfectly every day.  and nothing good comes from stewing in the fact that yesterday i did a big bunch of nothing on my dissertation. instead, i did a big bunch of something on other aspects of my life.

so maybe i’ll just listen to the good doctor.

(no, the other one.)

You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.
You’re on your own.
And you know what you know.
You are the guy who’ll decide where to go.

and maybe i’ll just realize that when i decide where to go, there’s merit to that. and i have the smarts and sass to choose over and over and over again.  and do it well.

and if i’m choosing the things that really matter, that’s what really matters.

mesa vignettes.

Posted in bff, etcetera, fall is football, forward my mail, Life, perfect brightness of hope, superheckyes on February 3, 2009 by drbolte

i went to arizona this weekend, in case you didn’t know.  i was gone friday and saturday and returned late sunday night/early monday morning.  it was a long weekend, but wonderful, because i got to see one of my friends get married for time and all eternity to someone who is wonderful and really deserves her.  it proves that Heavenly Father’s promises are sure.  that was nice to remember.

a few highlights of my trip:

  • i saw bride wars for bachelorette night (oh yeah…we mormon girls go buck wild).  it was WAY cuter than i thought it would be.  if you haven’t seen it, you should.
  • i don’t think the weather could have been more perfect, but my feet DIED in the shoes i wore to the wedding.  i was really seriously in pain.  my feet have not been in closed toed shoes since, and if i can keep that trend going, i will. i think the 49 degrees tomorrow will kill it, but who knows.
  • i did not catch the bouquet. i definitely wanted to, but i didn’t.  the girl who did, however (there were only like four of us single girls of age trying for it…the rest were kids), gave it to me because i am dating someone and she is not.
  • i brought that thing home with me.  on two different flights.  i answered lots of questions about it, and let me just tell you…it’s a little weird to tell people that no, i wasn’t in a wedding. no, i was not the bride (yes, i actually got asked that…which i thought was WEIRD since i was not wearing a wedding ring or traveling with a hot husband but whatever…).  no, i didn’t even catch the bouquet. yes, someone gave it to me.  it was sort of funny.  hard to keep from destroying the bouquet on the sardine-like flights we took home, but…it made it home in one piece.
  • in the atlanta airport on sunday, we had a three hour layover. this layover was made INFINITELY more okay by the super bowl, which was playing on most every airport screen.  we sat with a bunch of random strangers and watched, cheered, and argued about whether or not that steelers touchdown was in.  one rather loud, sort of weird guy kept arguing that it wasn’t.  OF COURSE IT WAS. HE CROSSED THE PLANE OF THE ENDZONE. HIS TOES WERE DOWN. IT WAS IN.  GOOD GRIEF.  and that was rather my tone when we were all arguing about it.  and, yes, i do argue with random strangers in airports about football. thanks for asking.
  • i think i probably text messaged the bff most of every day that i was gone.  and then, last night, i proceeded to delete every single text message in my inbox…including all of the ones that i had hoped to save because they made my heart flip flop.  that SUCKED.  i’ve been assured, however, that there will be others to replace it.

that was my weekend.  i think i am not yet fully recovered from it, but i’m trying.  i find myself rather in need of either a real vacation on a beach somewhere or some serious buttkicking, pull-yourself-up-by-your-bootstraps sort of sucking-it-upness.  i’m leaning towards the second with possible plans for the first later.  i have been told that such a vacation will help me with productivity.

maybe?