adjective: famous or well known, typically for some bad deed or quality. That is the definition of notorious.
I feel that often we, as in my "crew" if you will, are notorious.
Sometimes we are just misunderstood. People don't understand. And they don't take the time to understand. And then sometimes people do take the time to understand... but they run. They don't just slowly back up, it's just all of a sudden they are gone. Even if they aren't literally gone... they are. Nothing is the same. You can feel their absence, even in their presence.
Relationships are painful and stainful. They are beautiful, and they are necessary. Adding life to death, light to dark. But they damage us. They let us down. People let us down. We let people down.
I tried so hard to put my heart out on my sleeve. To uncover it from it's constructed armor. And I felt good for a little bit, knowing God was stretching me.
I'm back to keeping it under lock down. It's just too much right now.
We are too fragile.
Emotions are not something to be taken lightly or to be toyed with. Hearts are not fun things to throw around. You don't cause unpleasant situations digging for a reaction.
You love others how you want to be loved.
And I want to be loved genuinely.


Fine Art Photography

Since the literal and figurative abandonment of mother’s responsibility as a parent, there have been a lot of unanswered questions lingering in the rooms of her half-empty house. In search of answers to some of these questions, I’ve found myself on the verge of exploiting personal feelings of hurt, confusion, and anger. I have come to the realization that family is not always the source of support, encouragement, or love that we are told it is supposed to be.
The majority of the time spent on this piece I was engulfed in bitterness and disbelief, constantly in search of an explanation in regards to the current state of my family. Through this process, the questions have been narrowed to one main idea of “Why?”
Why did she leave? Why couldn’t my sisters and I be enough to make her to stay? Why has she walked away from her responsibilities as a mother?
What could be better than family, than support, than the love and comfort of those who bear unconditional love?
There has to yet to be an answer to this question.
In coping with the current wreckage of the people I love most, God has surrounded me with an immeasurable amount of support, encouragement, and love. Through those around me, I have been reminded of the beauty of His grace, the healing power of His love; and most importantly, the reassurance that we are never alone.

“For both He who sanctifies and those who are sanctified
are all from one Family.” -Hebrews 2:11


I fall asleep with my friends around me.

I realize more and more every day that no matter how "great" or personable or whatever I am, some times I just don't fit. This weekend has helped me come to this realization and it is bittersweet. I just don't fit with some places, and that's ok. It is bitter for obvious reasons... no one wants to feel like they don't belong. It is hard to look at the people around you and see that they are never going to know you in the same ways that some people do. You don't feel like you can be the real you. It's this strange line you balance. It sweet when you are with the people that do know you. The people that you can be yourself around and love the you that you are. The people that share something with you. Share values, life styles, goals, attitudes, it fits.
My people are the misfits. Once again 3eb said it best.

I try to fight the people I fit with. I try to fight against them because sometimes it's hard to be you, or me. However you want to read that. It's just hard sometimes. So last night I feel asleep with my friends around me. The number was few. But I have spent the day feeling like I want to cry because this summer I will not be with them.

We don't want to grow up.
But we have to grow up.
And it breaks my heart.



This weekend I went home to good ol' Grand Haven to work and get away from the wu. It was awesome to get away, I spent some good time with some awesome girl friends that I love so much. Working was quite the blessing as well. My beloved boss Mike really really wants me to come back for the sumer. I felt very loved and appreciated with the effort he was putting into getting me back to GH for the summer. There is a new restaurant opening called Jelly's that he wants me to cocktail and/or bar-tend at. Awesome opportunity to make some serious cash, if I do say so myself. On the flip side of that, I do not feel that living in GH would be the best thing for me really. I need to make money of course, but I really do not want to be working 60 hours a week, living the night life in grand haven again. I need to work with a photographer. I need to be proactive about my future... so on my way to work on saturday I am venting about this. I was praying that I either be content to be in marion or that God would present another opportunity to me. Mike being as wonderfully persuasive as he is, would definitely be able to get me to be in Grand Haven over Marion Indiana. It would not take much, this I know for sure. While I am working, I get a text from my friend, Kami at IWU. It simply says "do you want to live in nashville this summer?" And I replied "yes." I didn't even think about it really, I just replied. Then as the night went on and I escaped to the bathroom so we could talk about it, I was overwhelmed with excitement thinking of the possibilities. Photographers are everywhere in Nashville. Casey lives there, Ellie is living there and then of course Kami, who I am living with. Three girls that I know only a little but want to know and invest in more.
There are so many little details that are just working. Joel might ride down there with me and fly home so I don't have to drive by myself. My mom is going to stop in on her way to MI the beginning of June. I hopefully have a connection  to a photographer that Jess' finace is related to... it could be so good. 
I mean, it could suck too.
But it could be so good.
I'm a little sad about not being in Marion. I was kind of looking forward to living simply and hanging out with Logan and Boyer all the time. This is good though, I am very excited.

Sidenote: I really hope I don't run into Trent. If I can do anything about it, he will not find out that I am in Nashville.


newest artist statement

Family is considered the foundation in the lives of a lot of people. Family is their support system, their encouragement, where they feel most at home and loved. Unfortunately, for many, family is the exact opposite of that. We are used to this idea of the broken family. People themselves are broken; they are hurt, and most of all sinful. We are not perfect and we let people down as often as we are let down by others. In my case, the let downs are frequent and the people I love most are the cause of the pain. Hurt flows like a river, and the identity of source is the least expected.
Since the literal and figurative abandonment of mother’s responsibility as a parent, there have been a lot of unanswered questions lingering in the rooms of her half-empty house. In search of answers to some of these questions, I’ve found myself on the verge of exploiting personal feelings of hurt, confusion, and anger. Throughout the process of this body of work, the questions have been narrowed to one main idea: “Why?” Why did she leave? What could be better than family, than support, than love and comfort of those who bear unconditional love?


Same Mistake

So while I'm turning in my sheets
And once again, I cannot sleep
Walk out the door and up the street
Look at the stars beneath my feet
Remember rights that I did wrong
So here I go

Hello, hello

There is no place I cannot go
My mind is muddy but
My heart is heavy, does it show
I lose the track that loses me
So here I go

And so I sent some men to fight,
And one came back at dead of night,
said "Have you seen my enemy?"
said "he looked just like me"
So I set out to cut myself
And here I go

I'm not calling for a second chance,
I'm screaming at the top of my voice,
Give me reason, but don't give me choice,
Cos I'll just make the same mistake again,

And maybe someday we will meet
And maybe talk and not just speak
Don't buy the promises 'cause
There are no promises I keep,
and my reflection troubles me
so here I go

I'm not calling for a second chance,
I'm screaming at the top of my voice,
Give me reason, but don't give me choice,
Cos I'll just make the same mistake again

So while I'm turning in my sheets
And once again, I cannot sleep
Walk out the door and up the street
Look at the stars
Look at the stars, falling down,
And I wonder where, did I go wrong.

~James Blunt


Do I love like Beethoven?

World Civ today, we are learning about the rise of the modern mind, romanticism, free expression, everything in revolt of the enlightenment.
Smith is discussing the characteristics of the mind of the romantic. Emotion over intellect, Emphasis on personal feelings and free expression, valuing what is beneath; the depth of ourselves, love for adventure, etc. All of these things he is going through I'm agreeing in my mind like... yea, this is me. This is totally me. I'm a romantic, and not just in the "i love love" sappy way.
We get to some of the people of the romanticism era. Thoreau, Emerson, Hugo, Wolfgang, Beethoven. Smith gets onto the subject of how, even in all of his intelligence, how crazy of a person Beethoven was. How he was SUCH a romantic, that he was the subject of a quote (by who... I do not remember, of course). The quote says, and this is not exact, that the romantic spirit is fickle. It is in love only with feelings evoked by another while in love. Never with that person. Apparently Beethoven lived a life full of love, but not one love. Many loves. He loved the newness of love. The feelings evoked by that budding relationship, that honeymoon period. And he kept chasing after that.
Is this me? Is this how I love? Am I in love with being in love?
I really do enjoy getting to know people. It's exciting. It's different. It's fun. It's challenging. But how long do I stick around after I know them? I have always had friends in and out of my life so I can't even say that I am loyally in love with my friends. I only have a few people from my past that I am still close with, but it is almost that superficial close now, where we just say we are best buds. But really... we know nothing of who we are now. We live out of who we knew eachother to be in the past.
I don't know how to prove this fear right or wrong. But I am worried that I will never be able to commit. That I am always looking for the next adventure and the next thrill and I just cannot stop and relish and enjoy what I have.
I have a hard time being content.
I hope I am not doomed with a fickle heart.

Myrrh, Frankincense, and Gold

The three gifts of the magi given to the baby Christ all represented Christ's roles in His relation to man.
This is something that I never really knew, and I find very interesting. I mean, I knew that the magi brought three gifts. (Mainly because I set up the nativity scene every Christmas) And I knew they all stood for something, but I had no idea of the depth of their symbolism.
So this seemingly simple assignment (it was not so simple for me, hence the reason I was asking for help and explainations) turned into one of those moments where you feel like you should be in a movie. Because even though nothing really makes sense, everything just makes sense. I'm sitting in south side at almost 3 in the morning with three guys discussing the meanings of gifts given to Christ, their representation of Christ's role's in relation to man, and their relevance to our lives paired with which gift we can connect with the most.
Brought together by nicotine and greasy food. One quick question turns into a drawn out discussion, interrupting the flow of everyone's concentration.
See what I mean?
So good.
So this is a small overview of what I learned. haha...
Gold is a gift given on behalf of the King to his subjects. Gold represents Jesus' reign as King... obviously. Frankincense, which is something used in the temples for worship, represents Christ's divine nature and role as most high priest. Myrrh, which is an ingredient used in holy anointing oil represents His role as the ultimate sacrifice for the sins of man.
Trying to relate and connect each of these things to my own life was kind of complicated. I could see the connection between the gift and Christ's role, but had NO idea how in the world to connect that to my life currently. Thank God for intelligent friends. So the way Joel helped me understand it was that since myrrh represents His ultimate sacrifice, then what thing is it that I sacrifice for God? For Gold, since that is a representation of His place as king, what is one thing or way that I submit to Him? And last, for frankincense, since this represents his divine nature, how is He intervening in my life? What is something bigger than myself that I cannot handle by myself alone?

It would take way too long to go through each of those... but the last question that we talked about was what gift we connected with most. Frankincense was the gift that I could relate to the most out of the three, Joel said frankincense also, Jerome and Steve said Myrrh. But I think the reason that Frankincense is the one that stands out the most to me, is because right now.. where I am at... I am reminded more than ever that there is so much I cannot do on my own. That is hard to admit, but I need God's divine intervention. In areas of my own life, my own heart, in my family, in my friends, everywhere. I need Him to do work and make changes that are only possible through Him. Myrrh, representing the sacrifice, stands out too for obvious reasons, Christ's sacrifice for my sins is still something that I cannot wrap my mind around. Although, I do not ever want to be able to wrap my mind around that. I welcome the mystery and the awe.



Do you ever get that feeling in your stomach, like that sick feeling of anxiety mixed with nerves mixed with hurt and lots of stomach acid? That is the feeling that has been sitting in my gut for 2 days. It gets better, then worse, then better again. But it's there. It's almost like this familiar feeling of satan unleashing his destruction on my life.

Nothing is falling apart, but hurt is flowing like a river. Hurt that God will take and use for something so good, but right now all we can see is the problem at our noses.

I went out to a field today with a friend. There was this huge pile of old trees, trash, rocks, whatever. And I stood on this mound and just looked around me and my first thought was... wow this is so gross. Look at all of this shit everywhere. Does no one care? How did it get here? Why isn't it being taken care of? And then as I watched, I saw a rabbit come out of the "trash heap" And I saw little animals in the water around it, and I saw birds nests galore within the pile of trees. I saw rejuvenation. I saw healing in a potentially destructive situation. I saw a perfect metaphor for my life. In this time, God presented me with an opportunity to confide in a friend, and I passed it up because I allowed myself to be afraid of vulnerability. Everything in me wanted to talk and let out a long string of emotions that I knew she could relate to, and I didn't. Because I believed that I couldn't trust her with my heart. I believed I couldn't trust her with my feelings. So I said nothing. And because of my lack of vulnerability, I feel the hurt in my heart could penetrate us both.

I am in the midst of learning a long line of lessons. It started with a comment that a couple girls I know are only getting to know me because they are jealous of who I am. It made me face the way I really felt about jealousy, and I learned that jealousy is one thing that affects me a little different than other people. Some would be flattered by jealousy. Because it usually means that you have something that someone else wants and envies you because of it. When someone is jealous of me it hurts, because I know what it is like to have that emotion toward another person, and it can be so destructive. It can rip a person apart if they are not careful. I do not ever ever want to be the cause of any kind of feeling like that.

It also makes me feel, that if someone is jealous of me, it is because they don't know me. And they probably don't know me because I have not let them in or given them an opportunity to even want to get to know me. Because I walk around this campus with my head held high above the walls I spent 20 years building around me.

So from girls. and jealousy. to people. and connections. My post earlier goes into a little depth in this. I long for community. This is no surprise to me. I have little family, no spiritual family, the church has to fulfill it's role and be that for me. Community is my family.

So from people. and connections. to males. and interactions. I am not stupid. I am not naive. But I am a people pleaser. [also a new thing to me] I don't want people to be unhappy. I accommodate them. I love them. I want to do things for them. And when there is a guy in that place, it is not always the best situation. Because if a guy knows exactly what to say and when to say something... aka a charmer, smooth, manipulative, whatever you want to call it, I recognize the situation from day 1. I see it. I discuss it with myself in my head in the midst of every uncomfortable situation. Yet I do nothing. Because I know to confront that situation, means someone will be unhappy and someone's actions will be challenged. And it won't be mine. When people are challenged they are often defensive. I can usually tell what type of person will and will not be defensive in a situation where their motives and actions are being questioned. So rahter than stand up for my self worth, and show the respect I have for myself, I let little things slide, thinking I am strong enough to handle the aftermath so as not to upset the person in front of me. I protect, from all the wrong things. I am almost an enabler.

Honesty is the one trait in this whole realm of lessons that has remained in tact. I do not feel as though I have been dishonest with myself or with those around me. And that feels really good. Even though it has been difficult a couple of times to be straight-forward with the truth, I am able to face the situation rather than ignore it for another day. I am not afraid of confrontation, but I hate conflict. If someone is wronging me, and especially wronging someone else, I am not afraid to talk to them about it, but I hate the aftermath. The conflict. The mess that I cannot clean up.



I went to this amazing concert tonight. Bon Iver with Margot and the Nuclear so and sos. It was amazing. Phenomenal. I love concerts, but this one... bon iver rocked my world. I have not felt that much emotion in a piece of music since I got their album haha. The album is just as amazing as the live performance. But seeing it was so great, the drummer was ridiculous, he loved being a drummer. It was just one of those things you could tell was like.. him. It was inspiring.
So... I'm at the concert. The day was great. Fridays usually are. I Went to indy for dinner with Logan and some friends for Jessey's birthday. Logan and I went to Barnes and noble after and just had a blast. We wasted time goofing off and being silly. It was really refreshing. I felt very safe and very content.
Then the concert started.
I don't know what it was, but my chest started hurting inside. My stomch started to get that sick feeling in it. I just didn't want to be there. I wanted to see the concert, but I didn't want to be there. I wanted to escape and I started thinking of ever way I could: smoke, drink, drugs, literally run, withdraw. Once we were in the venue, I was very back and forth. Good, bad, good, bad... a literal pull of emotions. And once margot started to play... it was all over.
There was this bizarre nostalgic feeling I got when watching them on stage. Not the good nostalgic though where you happily reminisce about the past. It was one of those moments where I looked at the people on stage and connected with the place they were in. Parties, drugs, alcohol, living for themselves, living for the world, living to create and be free. I felt all of that, and along with it I felt their hurt and their burdens and the unhappiness. But I wanted to join them. I wanted to jump backstage and grab a beer and light up and stand in their complacency and bask in the familiarity of their lifestyle.
And I didn't want to be attached to anyone. I wanted to be alone. All this week I have these intense feelings of craving community and aching for togetherness. And I am in a moment enjoying great music with great friends held by an amazing guy and all I want is to be alone surrounded by people that will never understand me.
And I pushed.
So here I am.