Headlines for September 29th, 2014

Hey, it’s the least I can do to keep you people informed about the important things going on in the world. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to have a cup of coffee… without the pumpkin spice.

Whiner

Man, I’ve been all… “Mer. I’m sad. Life sucks” lately.

Pretty sure I’ve been making sad whale sounds too.

Nobody wants to be around that. Walking around all, “Mer. Bleh. Ugh. Life is haaaaaard.” Seriously, even I’m getting sick of myself. And you know it’s getting bad when I’m bringing Winston down.

Look at him. He's all like, "Oh my GAWD. Make it stop. You're bringin' me down."

Look at him. He’s all like, “Oh my GAWD. Make it stop. You’re bringin’ me down.”

So, in order to lighten the mood, here is my top 10 list of things I am thankful for today.

You’re welcome.

  1. Coffee from the nearby gas station. Quality product? Heavens no. Tasty? Hell yes.
  2. New episodes of “The Good Wife”. I seriously live for this show. It’s pretty much the highlight of my week. (Don’t you judge me. And I won’t judge your “Doctor Who” obsession. But seriously… “Doctor Who”? Really?)
  3. Depressed whales.
  4. The fact that food calories don’t count on Sundays. Have you ever seen a person get fat on a Sunday? No? Well, there’s your proof right there.
  5. Periods. They’re pretty much the universal woman excuse for being cranky, fat, and hangry for a week straight. Do we care that we ate 10 Oreos today? Um, no… we’re so bloated we can’t fit into our jeans anyway, so really, what harm is one more Oreo going to do? And when you’ve experienced bleeding out of an orifice for 5+ days straight, then you can come talk to us about our bad attitudes once a month. Mm-Kay? Mm-Kay.
  6. The sudden realization that my “I want to punch you and the entire universe in the face while I feel sorry for myself and whine constantly about my life” attitude correlates directly with that time of the month. Yessss. This all makes so much sense now!
  7. Subbing. Because it’s teaching without the extra responsibility. Seriously. Why did I not do this before?
  8. John Verdon books. Because life could always be worse.
  9. Boyfriend jeans. They’re basically fat pants, but since they’re so trendy, no one even notices. It’s fantastic.
  10. Top 10 lists.

Whew! I feel better already.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some Oreos to eat in front of “The Good Wife”.

Yeah. That just sounded weird.

Stuck/Unstuck

Stuck/Unstuck.

Lately, my life has been a vicious cycle of that. Getting stuck and then getting unstuck. Getting unstuck, and then getting stuck again. Finding or doing something that inspires and motivates me, only to feel stuck and lost a couple weeks later. Then again, feeling motivated and hopeful, only to lose it again a few weeks later, leaving me with the monumental task of re-finding it.

I’m tired of getting stuck. I’m not even sure what causes it. All I know is that every couple of weeks I get into a funk and feel angry, confused, frustrated and stuck, just like I did when this whole divorce debacle began. Shouldn’t I be over this by now?

Shouldn’t I be over the feelings of self-doubt, fear, anger, confusion, hopelessness, helplessness, and despair by now? Shouldn’t I have pulled myself up by my boot straps, dug back in, and done something with my life by now? Shouldn’t I have rebounded and re-discovered my passions and freedom and life by now? Because every time I feel like my life is starting to roll along again… those ugly feelings creep back in, and I’m back to being stuck. Back to where I started.

Every time I feel like I’m making progress, I realize just how far from my other life I am, and it starts to feel like I’m sliding backwards instead of moving forwards. Even if I am moving forward it doesn’t feel like it because it’s a new reality, new circumstances, a new starting point. But I didn’t ask to be here. I never wanted to start over. So, what the hell am I doing here?! And how the hell can I call anything I’m doing progress when it’s so far from my other reality a few months ago?!

Seriously?!

I just want to get from point A to point B. But I don’t even know what point B looks like because I’ve never been here before. And I can’t figure out the map, and my cell phone doesn’t have any service, and I’m directionally disabled to begin with so… what now… start walking? But even when I begin to head towards point B, I realize that this new point B is not my previous point B and walking certainly isn’t going to get me to this new point B very quickly, and will the new point B even be worth it? So really… what’s the point?

And yes, I realize I’m probably not making a lick of sense. But neither does my life right now, so… it’s fitting, don’t you think?

And then when I look around for my traveling companions, hoping someone can help me out… most of them are gone. Most of them have returned to their regularly scheduled programming and probably figure I’ve returned to my regularly scheduled programming… except for the fact that I can’t because all regularly scheduled programming has been CANCELLED. So, they’re back at home with life as usual and I’m still stuck in the wilderness trying to find my way to point B when I don’t know if point B will even be worth it.

I don’t know… is this how this divorce thing is supposed to feel? Because I am sooooo over it.

Church

I really should be cleaning my room right now, because… have you seen it? No. Of course you haven’t seen it. Mainly because it’s covered in crap. (Did I seriously just say, “I should be cleaning my room right now.”?  What am I, sixteen? Is my mom not going to let me go to the Homecoming Dance? Is this what my life has become? UGH….)

Anyway, instead of cleaning my room I’m going to talk about church. (I know, I’m such a badass.)

Last night I went to church.

Going to church isn’t a new thing for me, but it’s become a rather uncommon occurrence.

Come to think of it, I can’t remember the last time I went to church.

Easter services?

Good grief, I haven’t been to church since APRIL?! What kind of heathen am I? Have I become one of these infidels who only goes to church on high holidays?!

Apparently.

It’s not that I’m anti-church. Church is great. I love church. It’s just that… well… it’s so HARD to get up early on Sunday mornings. I mean, it’s one of two days you get to sleep in and you’re going to spend it getting up early? I don’t think so. What kind of insanity is that? Especially in this day and age when you can just watch the sermon via podcast. Seriously, churches… you shouldn’t be making it so easy not to come to church. It’s kind of counter productive to your mission, is it not?

I used to attend a mega church in the big city with the jerk before moving back home. (He was very serious about getting to church and watching the weekly podcasts when we had missed. Clearly, he got a LOT out of those sermons… ) I kind of hated going to a mega church. At first I thought it was great. They had professional musicians and coffee shops and fancy lights and stadium seating. And then I started to hate it because of the professional musicians and coffee shops and fancy lights and stadium seating. It made me wonder how many tables Jesus would overturn if he were to walk into any of these mega-churches around the country. I mean… church should be for worship, not our entertainment. It’s a church. Not a mall. Plus, you don’t really get to know anyone at a mega church. Especially when they offer 14 services on the weekends. Okay, maybe not 14 but when you have services Saturday afternoon, Saturday night, Sunday morning, and Sunday afternoon… all at different campuses… and you watch the pastor preach on a big screen… and nobody knows your name or even cares if you’re there… well, it’s sort of impersonal and further solidifies the fact that… you don’t really need to go. No one is going to miss you. And again, there’s always the podcast.

So, I had my mega church experience and I wasn’t a huge fan. I wanted something smaller, something more personal. Flash forward to moving back to a small town where every church is small and I guess I got what I wished for. My mom has more recently been going to a very small Lutheran church that she used to go to a very long time ago. I don’t remember ever attending this church, but my siblings do and apparently we were very active in it. This was before we changed churches and started going to a Pentecostal church. I know, right? Pentecostals? Aren’t they like… weird? Well, no. And… kind of. I mean there wasn’t shouting in tongues and women dancing with tambourines and slaying people in the spirit… although, I think there were a couple of “revivals” there which consisted of such things. Anyway, this Pentecostal-type church was the church I grew up in. I was used to church being a little more… free flowing. People weren’t super uptight and they talked about Jesus a lot and prayed for you on the spot and God wasn’t just reserved for Sundays. In some ways, it was really great to grow up in a church like that. In other ways, they could be very judgmental and very focused on fire and brimstone, but I guess you take the good with the bad. Eventually, when I was a little older, we moved on to different churches – one Baptist, one Evangelical. And again, these churches too were more open and free. After some time, we sort of stopped going to church. In a small town where there are only so many options, it’s hard to find a “home church” that offers what you need and it became easier to maintain a spiritual walk at home without some of the unnecessary “churchy” stuff. (How many committees are you serving on? Why aren’t you part of the Bible study? You didn’t make it to communion last week?! You picked up lottery tickets?! Why haven’t you been baptized? What are you bringing to the potluck? You can’t sit there… that’s where the pillars of the church sit. Come to think of it… church can be a lot like high school… but that’s another post for another time.)

Then, during high school and the past couple of years there were a couple Evangelical churches, another Pentecostal church, the mega church, and even a Catholic church that came about while teaching in a Catholic school. On this journey of church hopping, most churches maintain the same beliefs, with slight variations on the same theme. However, there seem to be two types of churches: Traditional and Non-Traditional. I was much more comfortable with the non-traditional.

So, when I went to the little Lutheran church with my mom, I was expecting a very traditional service. And I wasn’t disappointed. It was nearly exactly like a Catholic service but without the priest and altar boys. Liturgy, call and response, hymns accompanied by an organ, somber, serious, whispered tones, and nobody making any sudden movements… we don’t want the Lord to think we’re heathens. It was… weird. I wasn’t used to it. It made me uncomfortable. At one point, I tried to say something in my normal speaking voice and instantly had to lower it to a whisper because it sounded like I was shouting. People don’t speak in this church. They whisper. And I couldn’t figure out why everyone seemed so… sad. Maybe they hadn’t gotten the memo? Jesus isn’t dead anymore. It’s okay. You can crack a smile. Just a little one. Not even a full one. Maybe just tilt the side of your mouth up ever so slightly. No? You’re not comfortable with that? Okay. We’ll stick with the frowning then. And then hymns were slooooow and draaaaagy and *sigh* somewhat defeated. And not once did anyone clap their hands… the songs were too slow for that. And no one shouted “Amen!” in the middle of the sermon. And no one raised their hands in praise. And everything was slightly foreign to me.

But then I realized… for the majority of people… this is church. This is how it’s always been and how it always will be. That’s how they worship. And that’s okay. Just because it’s not my style doesn’t mean it’s wrong.

Church is funny. We’re all so different. We all take different approaches. We all appreciate different things. And yet, we’re all part of the bigger “church”. I wonder if that’s what God intended for the church all along.

Blogging is the new cult.

I might be following too many blogs. Because when I logged into WordPress this morning, there were 14 new posts for me to read.

Fourteen.

It felt like homework, so I’ll be honest, I skipped a lot of them. I felt ridiculously guilty about the whole thing. I’m sure they’re all super interesting and inspirational and funny, and I’ll bet I would garner a little nugget of truth from each and every one of them but… I just couldn’t. Again, there were fourteen posts. FOURTEEN. That’s like… a lot. And I know ya’ll don’t read every single one of my posts. I mean… there’s no way. Unless you do, in which case, BRAV-O. Seriously. I don’t even read all of my posts. I should get you a medal or trophy or ribbon or… something. Do you want a treat? That always works for my cat. I could get you a treat. It wouldn’t be a cat treat. Maybe an Oreo? But then I’d have to mail it to you and pay shipping and handling and it just wouldn’t be worth it. So… let me just say, nicely done, blog reader. I am impressed. You are a true follower of Annie. You shall be my minion and I shall be your leader. And I will write pointlessly random blog posts, and you shall read them and rejoice in my hilarity.

Or not. ‘Cause now it’s just getting weird and cult-like. And nobody likes a cult. Unless you’re a Scientologist and in complete denial about being in a cult. In which case, you probably don’t like cults either because you don’t realize you’re in one.

See? Look what I did. I just offended all my Scientologist readers. I’m sorry. I was kidding. Truly. Mostly. Kind of. I love you?

Okay, let me start over. Everyone join hands and we’ll sing a rousing rendition of Kumbayah and then we can talk about our feelings and everyone can share their latest blog posts and then I’ll be forced to hear all fourteen of them. And then you can confess that you do not, in fact, read all of my posts either, and then I shall promptly disown you and call you a bunch of heathen unbelievers after which I shall cast you out of my presence.

Sound like a plan?

Aw, crap.

I feel like death warmed over this morning. Like I’m recovering from the worst hangover known to man. Like I was hit by a Mack Truck, then hit again when it backed up over me.

Basically, I feel like this:

Ugh...

Ugh…

Maybe it’s because I watched “The Exorcist” right before going to bed.

Maybe it’s these horrible allergies that have been the bane of my existence the last few weeks, and caused me to wake up multiple times in the night to either catch the snot, blow my nose or make futile attempts to try and stop the sneezing.

Maybe it’s because I slept for 9 and a half hours.

Maybe it’s because my new “Sugar Free” diet consisted of 3 Oreos and two miniature candy bars yesterday.

Maybe it’s because I just received the divorce papers from the ass hat and somehow, even though I want it, they make me feel miserable and sad.

Maybe it’s because I barely had any water to drink yesterday, when normally I have 3 water bottles full.

Maybe it’s because my peaceful slumber was not only interrupted multiple times by these horrible allergies but also by early morning phone calls from sub systems and a meowing cat who was lonely at 5:00 am.

Maybe it’s because I haven’t had coffee for over 24 hours.

Whatever the reason, it feels like crap.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go let the right side of my nostril drain into the empty left side of my nostril because somehow that will make me feel better.