Tag Archives: bravery

On My Own

It happened so fast I think I am JUST now having it all sink in. The last time I posted, I had decided, but not aloud, that I was ready to have my own place. A few days after that, I mentioned it aloud. Within a week, I was filling out paperwork and getting keys. I didn’t expect it to happen so fast. But that is the thing I have noticed about this crazy journey, when it rains it pours, and then your new city floods….

I got my keys. I had a roll of toilet paper in my purse this time. The first time I rented an apartment in college, my roommate and I signed the papers and were going to run and get a few things and the store before we unloaded (I think our parents were an hour behind us with all our stuff…maybe…I don’t really remember), but first, as is typically with my tic-tac sized blatter, I wanted to make a pit stop. I walked in and realized, “Oh my gosh! I have to provide my own toilet paper now!” Silly, I know, but before this I had lived with my parents or in the dorms, so toilet paper was just always magically there. This time I was wiser. I was prepared. I brought my own roll. I borrowed an air mattress. I ran to store for a shower curtain. I got cereal, milk, and my coffee maker. I settled in for my first night.

It has been a week. I am still moving my stuff in and trying to furnish the place creatively (read: spending as little as possible). I have discovered the usefulness of Craig’s List. Up until now I only looked at it because I found the missed connections section interesting. I have obtained a few tools to help me with the things I have found on said useful site. Friends have loaned me furniture so there is a place to sit if you come to visit, but not if you and two of your friends come over, so bring a chair. It is kind of a BYO whatever at this point. Maybe one day soon I can offer you your own plate, just not today.

I think what feels so good about it is that I am really starting. I am on my own so to speak. I know I am never really on my own. I learned this lesson a million times over these past few years. I have amazing people in my life. Not just the people out west but the ones right here in town. Especially the ones who have helped me make this place home. And even though it hasn’t been a whole week and I am less than 8 miles away, I miss the No-Longer-Pregnant cousin and the My-Actual-Biological cousin and the Wee One. I will be eternally grateful to them. If they hadn’t opened their hearts and home to me, I doubt I would have loaded my car up and headed this way. They gave me a safe place to land and to start rebuilding. Rebuilding was exactly what I needed. Thank you guys.

Taking a job, getting my own place. Those feel like HUGE things for me at this point. They are major commitments for me. The kind I very much intentionally avoided for almost two years. I needed to take that time for myself. To wander wherever my spirit took me. It brought me here, and on a few other adventures along the way. I’ve learned that no matter what the paperwork says, no matter all our best intentions, it can change. It can change because you want or need it to. It can change and you have no control over it. All you do have control over is how you deal with it. So here I am, on this journey, starting out again and I couldn’t be more excited.

Princesses

Dad calls me his princess. Mom thinks this has gone to my head. One of my dearest friends once a whined, “why am I not a princess?!” (She had just watched the royal wedding). I ran the princess half marathon.

 

What’s up with our princess thing? I recently took an internet quiz to find out how much of a Disney princess I was. I scored somewhere in the middle. This didn’t surprise me. But it did spark a conversation with two friends about our favorite princesses. You see, even though I am an adult and even though I would like to think I am not that girly, I love animated chick centered movies. I love most animated movies really. But guess what, my favorite female characters aren’t princesses. Mulan, Meg, and Princess Tiger Lily…even though it’s in her name she doesn’t count as an official princess.

 

The greatest gift and honor... is having you for a daughter.
The greatest gift and honor… is having you for a daughter.

Mulan is amazing. She has both parents (major deviation), who seem to be pretty decent, and they don’t even get killed off. Her grandma is a spitfire. Remember the part: “Do you want to stay for dinner?” “Do you want to stay forever?” There are a few songs from the movie I will belt out shamelessly, yeah total non sequitur. She saves her country. She doesn’t have magic or need a man (she likes a man, but they end up working together more than she depends on him to save her). She defies everyone and stands up to gender restrictions (as best she can) to do what she believes is right. She is the best. But she is not a princess.

 

Thanks for everything, Herc. It's been a real slice.
Thanks for everything, Herc. It’s been a real slice.

Meg. I mean come on folks, any woman who says, “I’m a damsel, I’m in distress, I can handle this. Have a nice day.” is worth admiring. She also has a few songs I belt out with regularity (in fact it might be part of my running mix, my pre-date getting ready mix, really every mix). Meg doesn’t have a family. She makes a series of poor decisions, but hey, she can handle it. She reluctantly falls in love with a demigod. Let’s skip the whole part of the actual mythology where Hercules ends up killing her. The movie Meg has spunk, she is a well created character, especially considering she isn’t that well-developed in mythology. Meg may not be the perfect example of healthy attachment, she has her guard way up, but eventually she is willing to let Herc into her life. I think she is great, she ties her own sandals and everything.

 

She doesn’t needs lines, she says it all right here.

Princess Tiger Lily. I couldn’t tell you the last time I watched Peter Pan. And I don’t even remember if she has a single line in the whole movie. But what I do remember is the way she stood there with her chin in the air, in a brave and defiant posture. And the way she danced, she was really dancing, not just flitting around. Those two postures stick out for me. I’ve always liked her.

 

Bravery. Confidence. The ability to stand on her own two feet. No magical powers of her own. No wimpy distress for a man. In fact they are all willing to make sacrifices for their friends and/or family not to just be a damsel in distress. They are regular bad ass gals.

 

These are the ladies I like best. But they don’t “count” as princesses. I guess this shouldn’t really matter, but it makes me mad. Sure, there are other things about the “real princesses” that I like, Belle is an avid reader, Ariel has beautiful curiosity, but there are a lot of things about them that make me cringe, helplessness, making absurd sacrifices for guys (yeah I am talking about you Ariel and Pocahontas), and the like. Sure there are some newer princesses that are okay. I guess my bigger issue is with the whole “princess thing.” Sure it is fun to play and imagine. I have no qualms with Dad calling me his princess, nor with girls who make-believe or even wish they were princesses. It does seem to have some perks, and hey we all want to be special. But why do the princesses we offer as models have to be so…well…lame?