Category Archives: ponderings

6 Things to Know Before Living Alone

home-aloneRemember college when you shared a tiny dorm room with a complete stranger your freshman year? And then moved into a house with somewhere between 5 and 15 of your best friends? Remember how much fun that was? Yeah, those were the days. And then suddenly, you graduate and become real people with jobs you actually have to go to every day  and alarms you can’t snooze until it’s time to start drinking. And you get emails that you actually have to read. And you have to use your grown up phone voice all the time and your favorite ripped jeans are reserved for lazy Sundays only. And perhaps you live with all your best friends still (I did), but it’s just not the same. You’re adjusting. You’re growing up. And it sort of sucks. You can’t get away with never cleaning the shower and exclusively using paperware to avoid having to do the dishes. Storming home at 3am with tree branches, traffic cones and a few strangers nice enough to give you a ride is no longer acceptable. You all end up hating each other. And then, to save your friendships and your whole no-murders-on-my-record streak, you decide to live alone. And it’s awesome (seriously. Everyone needs to live alone once in their life. I urge you to do this). But like anything you do for the first time, there are some things you need to get used to and some tricks to learn before you do it well.  Read the rest of this entry

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Hollywood’s Love Affair With Unplanned Pregnancy

Really? Always so happy?

Really? Always so happy?

How many movies or TV shows can you name where a main character unexpectedly gets pregnant and decides to heroically keep her child? I’ve tried to think of this recently and I came up with a pretty substantial list: Sex and the City, The Gilmore Girls, The Secret Life of an American Teenager, 16 and Pregnant, How to Deal (yes, my favorite Mandy Moore movie), Saved! (another Mandy Moore classic), Juno, the list goes on and on. Read the rest of this entry

No-Fail Ways to Make Yourself Really Sad

I know it seems weird, but we all do it right? We all do things we know we shouldn’t because we know we’ll just depress ourselves. And yet, it’s like we’re not physically capable of stopping it, knowing full well we’ll end up walking back to our apartments with Ray LaMontagne singing sad diddies in our ears (just me? whatever). Sometimes we need to feel sad, though. And sometimes we just don’t have anything better to do. Here are my go-to make-you-want-to-sit-in-the-dark-and-cry-for-days techniques: Read the rest of this entry

Redefining the Fall

Just a thought I had after a few glasses of wine and the notes app on my phone… Read the rest of this entry

Girly Things I Just Can’t Do

This is sort of what I feel like a lot of the time…

I’m a girl in a lot of ways. I can put together an outfit like nobody’s business. I learned how to walk in heels before I learned how to use the bathroom by myself. I can take care of babies, cook a meal, and cry at the drop of a hat just because. I am a woman. But there are some things I just suck at. I feel like I shame my gender when it comes to the following: Read the rest of this entry

An Open Letter to: Best Friends

Dear Concept of Best Friends:

During a particularly strange evening not too long ago, someone said to me, “John’s my best friend. And I don’t mean that in the way that people just sort of toss that term around. For me, best friends are my family. They’re the people who understand and accept me without question.” Even though this gentleman went on to buy me about 6 Allagash beers, his words struck me. And I started to reflect on this term “best friend” that we toss out so frequently, about so many people. We use it for awhile. Then we stop using it. And we’re able to continue on as if nothing had ever happened. Like that person who used to be a best, and isn’t anymore, never existed. Like our lives weren’t interwined for a period of time. Because best friend, in today’s world, usually means someone who you spend a lot of time with. It refers to someone who likes the same things you like, who lives a similar lifestyle that you live. Best friend, in a lot of cases, really means convenient friend. Or most-like-me friend. It’s why we can let best friends come in and out of our lives like clothing trends. You’re lucky if you find one that works for a few seasons, let alone finding that classic staple. And like clothing, sometimes we outgrow our best friends. Sometimes we move across the country and a heavy winter jacket just isn’t necessary anymore. But yet, I think we still need it when we’re feeling cold because that winter jacket is sometimes the only thing that can warm us.

For some reason, I decided to track down “Everyone’s Free, To Wear Sunscreen” (not sure how old you readers are, but it was the graduation speech turned Baz Lehrman “song” in 1999) and there’s a line that says “Friends come and go, but with a precious few, you should hold on.” I think I have held on to some. I think I have let go of others. I think others have let go of me. And some more, well, we’ve let go of each other. Maybe because I tend to be a person who obsesses about relationships (all relationships, not just sexual ones), I get caught up thinking about what happened to the girl I was inseparable from freshmen year of college. Why did an instant bond disappear? Did we just need each other like a car needs those doughnut tires after a flat and before you get the real deal wheel put on? Good for a little while, but don’t go too fast. And get rid of that thing as soon as you can before you crash. What about the girl in elementary school whose house I knew better than my own? Did we outgrow that? Did I stop needing that the way I stopped needing my own parents’ house. That old comfort no longer found between those familiar walls.

I think we throw around the term “best friends” too casually, too recklessly. I think when we mean it, we should fight for it. I think when we don’t mean it, we should walk away. I think we should stop to think about whether we mean it or not.