unique like a SNOWflake

It’s Monday.

Monday evening actually.

But it doesn’t feel like Monday.

Because I haven’t had to do much of anything all day.

I drove my suitemate to the doctor. Which was terrifying.

Not because I’m afraid of doctors.

I am.

Because the roads are covered in ice.

It’s snowing outside.

Which is why I haven’t had to do anything this Monday.

It’s actually a really good thing that I haven’t had to do anything, because I’m in the weirdest state of mind. Have been all weekend, actually. Add to that the fact that I’ve been operating on five hours of sleep today, and my thought process and writing style just end up being…not sloppy. Sloshy. I think sloshy is the right word for it.

Something like that.

It’s not that I’m not thinking straight. I’m just not thinking in straight lines.

I tied my scarf around my head; I think maybe it’ll help keep my brain in place.

I have spent practically all weekend in this room. With my laptop. And a plethora of fairytale characters who’ve enlisted me to tell their stories properly.

I can’t imagine, as a career, being paid to listen to people’s stories and secrets. I’d go mad. I am going mad.

Perhaps some people would call this madness ‘being a writer’. I just call it madness. Lack of sanity. Complete and utter lunacy.

Did you know that Goldilocks is the daughter of Rapunzel? That’s where she gets her golden locks.

And that fairy godmothers don’t actually turn pumpkins into carriages? They’re far more practical than that.

I was wide awake until 4:50am this morning.

WIDE awake.

I don’t do that.

Last semester I decided that I was a night owl.

I think it was because I was so ready to do some deciding for myself, and the bedtime that had been imposed on me at home was a restriction I could throw off without feeling exposed or insecure. (I’m the kind of baby bird that you have to push out of the nest so that instinct will kick in and I’ll spread my wings to keep from going SPLAT. Hopefully. Most of the time.)

But I’m not a night owl.

According to the self-test we did in Psychology, I’m not really an early bird either. I’m one of those middle people.

Maybe that’ll change when I’m not in college anymore.

Maybe I’ll go back to being the lark who used to wake up half an hour before she was allowed out of bed and silently sing a 60-second-long song to herself thirty times every morning, all while wriggling with impatience to get out of bed and start the day.

No joke.

That’s what I did every morning for a long while.

And then I just didn’t get out of bed in the mornings for a while.

And now I alternate.

Except for that one random night when I can’t shut off my brain until 4:50am because I have so many fairytales and plots and costumes and staging instructions and prices whirling about in my mind. And then wake up, for a day of no obligations, at 10:15am. Yup. Sleep deprivation, here we go.

If I could be on a creative high like this all the time, it would be great.

Except that I’m currently a full-time student. And this mind buzzing doesn’t work well in a classroom.

I may have sat still most of today, but my attention keeps bouncing back and forth between here, there, and the moon. Computers are good about accommodating for this. Professors…not so much.

Anyway, my basic point was to say hullo and to say that it snowed, and to take a break from trying to negotiate a misunderstanding between a handful of fairytale characters.

Happy Monday!

I hope your day has been at least half as nice as mine and at least five times more sane than mine.

Cheers!

– Melissa
OREO Wonderfilled Song feat. Owl City

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hindsight and raw hands

Growing up with my dad, there were two ways to know that you weren’t working hard enough: 1. if you were cold and 2. if you didn’t sleep well at night.

Well, I’m proud to say that I did work hard enough today.

How do I know?

Well, I never got cold (never mind that the theatre was a sort of an oven) and I am 99% sure that I will sleep very well tonight.

I didn’t exactly work smart enough, though.

My hands are red and raw and swollen from working without gloves.

I had gloves in my back pocket the entire four hours we were working.

Now, to be fair, I did remember that they were there most of the time. But I was switching back and forth between so many different tasks—some of which gloves would have helped, some of which gloves would have hindered—that it hardly seemed worth it to take the time to switch back and forth between gloves.

It would have been worth it.

But that’s easy to say looking back.

Also looking back I realize all the benefits of working for my dad all the time. The benefits that I never noticed at the time.

Stuff like the fact that all the muscle tone I achieved mixing concrete and digging trenches and running the chop saw goes away when I don’t consistently utilize it.

Or the idea that if I’m not spending every weekend doing manual labor that I really ought to be getting a work out some other way. Ew.

(While we’re on this subject, if anyone knows of a contractor here in town who’s interested in hiring a slightly dramatic eighteen year-old who has a pretty decent work ethic and is afraid of power tools and electricity and completely over-paying her, let me know.)

Granted, those days had—and continue to have—downsides.

Like the whole working thing.

And getting frustrated because my plans for causing enough mischief to slide the world into total chaos conflicted with my dad’s schedule for home improvement.

And the fact that I know what I’m doing whenever I have to work alongside people who definitely don’t. (By no fault of their own. Don’t hear me being rude or judgmental. Just annoyed and rather inclined to do things all on my own.)

Such is life.

I’m sure I’ll be fussing and seeing only the downsides when I’m back at home for the summer, working on projects that I don’t see the point of and that interfere with whatever nonsense I’ve dreamed up. Isn’t that the way things go?

But anyhow, I’m now going to go and make sure that I’ve met the requirements for Dad’s second condition of a good work day.

G’night!

– Melissa

12:00 AM

It’s funny how things evolve.

Now, don’t hear me buying into the idea of Evolution of present day life from an amoeba.

I’m talking about how things like emotional responses change over time.

Because I’m still crazy homesick. But ‘crazy homesick’ is manifesting itself differently this semester than it did last semester.

Last semester, the longest I ever went without breaking down in tears stemming from my vast desire to no longer be here but instead be there was about a week.

I’m less weepy this semester.

Last semester, it felt like every waking hour was filled with thoughts completely centered on home, and whenever I did end up distracted, I noticed.

I’m less single-minded this semester.

Homesickness is more of a persistent ache this semester. It’s fixating on what I hear about life at home and on the pictures I surround myself with. It’s relating every bit of life back to something about my family. In other words, it’s more subtle to me but probably still glaringly obvious to everyone around me. Maybe even more obvious than last semester. I don’t know for certain.

The play closes tomorrow.

And, on one hand, I’m super relieved. I’ve been so exhausted the past week that I’m only certain the week happened at all because a) it’s a different weekend than it was last weekend and b) homework’s turned in that I had to have turned in during the week of February 9-13. The hustle and bustle and socialness of a show has me drained even when I’m getting enough sleep.

But, on the other hand, I’m super dreading the cessation of this show’s run. Because I know me fairly decently by now, and I consistently come down with a bad case of post-show-blues upon the close of any and every show. Even shows I hate. Even show’s I just worked backstage for and spent two weeks bored out of my mind during.

Anticipating how awful something is going to be usually makes it worse, psychosomatically and all that, so I’ve been trying very hard to talk myself out of this sense of impending gloom. Yet history speaks pretty loudly and clearly.

I’ve even taken actions to prepare myself to get over the hump I presume (know) is coming: I’ve started prep work to begin the legwork for putting on a show at home this semester (stay tuned for details as they arise) as well as stocking my plate with various other projects to engage in.

The truth: I’d rather just shut my emotions down and go into hiding for awhile.

Turtles have it good: they take their shells with them everywhere.

And armadillos (which I personally like to call darmarillos just for the heck of it) have armored plates on their backs and the curl up and look ridiculous and are fairly well protected.

And porcupines have awesome terrifying quills bristling everywhere.

(Have I ever mentioned that I have a slight phobia of porcupines? Oh, and also of fire. If you don’t believe me, ask the two idiots who, with a lighter, had me cringing halfway across the stage before the curtain came up for Act 2 tonight…)

And then there’s me: I can be as prickly or turtley or tough as I want, and I still have to deal with people and life.

Ugh.

This is normally where I’d get spiritual. Talk about how what I’ve been learning in my quiet time or in Bible class relates to all this. But it’s midnight and so I’ll condense it to just saying that I’m really really trying to remember to do life not on my own strength. To forgo comfort and safety and do whatever it takes to bring glory to God. I’ll also say that it’s not that I feel that I’m entirely failing. It’s just that the Christian walk isn’t easy. It goes against everything in us. For me, it means dealing with people. And boy oh boy am I over dealing with people.

Okay.

It’s late.

I’m going to sleep so that I can be alive, alert, awake, enthusiastic for church and Hay Fever and set strike tomorrow.

Blessings on all your heads. And maybe water balloons, too.

If any of you have a random water balloon materialize over your head and fall down and land on you with a splat and drench you in icy cold water just as you’re reading this, a) you’re welcome and b) please tell me so that I can laugh in delight at your misfortune while also marveling at the awesome weirdness of God.

Adios!

– Melissa
Check this out.

Super Bowl Sunday

I’m chewing on a safety pin.

I suppose it isn’t the worst thing I could be chewing on.

It’s decently safe.

It doesn’t taste weird.

And the fact that it has four other safety pins attached to it means that if I jiggle my head or shift it in my teeth it makes satisfactory little jingle.

I’m not sure quite why I chew on things.

I just do.