SHOUTOUT TO MY BROTHER

Dear Reader,

It’s interesting to think of how I talk about my family. Most everyone who knows me knows about Sarah (because she’s constantly featured on my twitter/instagram/blog/facebook/snapchat). Yes, we all know she’s amazing and adorable and kind-hearted and sensitive because I showcase her all the time.

Then we have my parents, who I try to refrain from mentioning on here–at least when it’s negative. Most people know about my mom, though. A simple Canadian with outstanding manners (my favorite example is how she apologizes to Siri when she is misinterpreted). She’s a very typical stay-at-home mom who my friends adore, and then there’s my dad who is a very typical working dad. A family doctor in town who gets home between 5 and 6 and tends to spend the rest of the night working alone in the basement or watching shows with my mom or playing poker with some guys in the community. And it’s not like he was an absent father or anything, but because we don’t have the best relationship, I tend to hold back my feelings (or at least save them for my journal). Because, to be honest, our relationship has a lot of ups and downs (or a lot of downs with the occasional up) and I don’t think constantly sharing my side of the story publicly on a website that he could potentially find one day is a good idea in the slightest.

I will say this, though: while we butt heads on just about everything, the most important thing he has taught me is the value of family. A little ironic, right? But he was married once before he met my mom and together, him and Carol had Caitlin, my older half-sister. She’s another family member that many people don’t know about. She grew up in a house two hours away from us and we did see her fairly often (considering how busy we all kept ourselves), but that alone was enough to keep us from having a “typical” sibling relationship, I think. I still 100% call her my sister (“half” if I’m clarifying) and I love her family dearly, it was just different.

But, as the title indicates, this post is inspired by my brother–who is frequently forgotten by my friends (just as much as Caitlin) which is a little odd if you think about it because he is only one year ahead of me and seventeen months older. But we’ve had an interesting relationship. It started off great, back when Sarah was the third wheel and Sean and I were best buds, but then we were put in the same class (a 4th grade/5th grade experiment) and that was where we honed our most defining qualities to one another: my annoyingness and his tendency to be a dick.

Then we just kind of grew up wanting more distance. We could still be civil and get along, but I think being grouped together for so long was really damaging. I don’t know how he felt about me, but I mostly just hated being in his shadow. He was always hilarious and the class clown and going on adventures with his big friend group and having funny stories to tell. Meanwhile, I was hiding away in my room because I was somewhere between introverted and constantly self-conscience and I still had no idea who I was.

He had always been so sure, though. And, of course, sibling rivalry kicked in because he was always better at soccer and smarter naturally and didn’t have to try to get people to like him. I was always just a little behind.

When he went to college, though, I think we got the separation we needed. He was suddenly at the other edge of the state and we hardly ever saw each other. And I think that’s helping us repair this relationship.

But that’s the other thing, I don’t know if he wants the relationship repaired, because he surely could get by without it. He has the same family as I do, but he gets different things from different people. He has a dad he truly looks up to and a sweet mom who is always just trying to do everything right. He has a half-sister who has her own hilarious family and is a blast to hang out with, and he has a younger sister who adores him and can actually maintain a healthy relationship. And then there’s me–someone who can fight with him for hours and knows how to annoy the hell out of him.

But he probably doesn’t need that in his life.

Okay, this post kind of took a turn I wasn’t expecting (and it’s turning out to be much longer than I intended), but my whole point of this was to talk about a new resolution I have: to re-connect with my family. Because today I was sitting in EDP and we were talking about creativity and I was thinking to myself how Sean is one of the most creative people I know. And I don’t know if he knows that, because I’ve never told him.

So I want to make some changes this year because whenever I see stories of sisters who don’t get along or don’t particularly like each other or are just missing out on the relationship that I get to have with my sister, I am saddened to the point of tears. It’s why I cried during Frozen and it’s why I cried last week while watching a short video called “Where’s Molly” for class.

And then I think, some people out there have this kind of relationship with their brother. This indescribable, wonderful thing that can’t be put into words because it’s just the simple fact that revolves around the importance of family. And I don’t want to grow up and have kids who don’t get to learn soccer or hear the funny stories or get to look up to their uncle, all because their mom was too stubborn for too long and refused to just grow up.

Sincerely,

Sammy

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LET’S GET BACK INTO THIS

Dear Reader,

I’ve sort of abandoned this website for a few weeks (only two, but it feels like longer). I’ve been really bad at reading up on blogs and even worse at updating my own. I guess I have a few excuses though. Second semester has started, which means recruitment has started, and all of my professors decided to just jump right in (which is why I already have loads of work). Additionally, my laptop is being worked on because it malfunctioned on the second day of the semester and I won’t be getting back for a few weeks because it is currently sitting in ‘the queue.’

But I want to get back into writing and blogging and making videos and all of that. Being back at Miami is strange, and I was actually planning on writing a post about it, but I still don’t know if I can explain what I mean. I have a few posts like that in my head that I actually need to get around to writing them. I need to get back to utilizing this outlet. There’s something about getting things down on paper that is so therapeutic and clarifying and Lord knows I could use some therapy and clarity in my life right now.

Ooh and side note, I’m thinking of taking up yoga.

Right now that’s all it is, though. Just thoughts. I’m thinking of writing a ‘if we were having coffee’ post and maybe a post about feminism or the importance of language or even Macklemore and I have a few finished books I need to write a review on, like Mindy Kaling’s ‘Why Not Me?” and John Green’s “Will Grayson, Will Grayson.” But it’s the getting around to doing them that is the struggle.

As per usual.

But, hey, at least I got around to writing a post about nothing.

Sincerely,

Sammy

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MY DRUNK JOURNAL

Dear Reader,

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I’ve told a few people that I have this thing called a “drunk journal” in my notes on my phone where, in true Hemingway style, I write only after I’ve had a few. What I don’t tell people is what I write in it. Or when.

Because sometimes I write in it after I catch a reflection of myself in a mirror and decide to excuse myself from a party and walk home alone.

And sometimes I turn to it when I find myself in a corner, not talking to anyone and silently refusing to make the effort myself.

It’s not all bad, though. Some of the things I find on it are really amusing (and rather questionable), but because I really don’t write in it too often (surprise! I’m not an alcoholic!), the majority are just sentences that look like the last time I wrote:

“Sometimes I think if I wore makeup, maybe I’d get a man.”

What a stupid (and truly embarrassing) thing to say. In the act of full disclosure, though, I’m sharing it here because these are the fleeting thoughts that I shrug off when I’m sober, but can’t let go of when I’m drunk and everything seems to become clear as the guys approach my attractive friends and I am left to turn to my glass and pick up my phone.

I’m doing the Happiness Project this year, which essentially consists of making monthly goals or resolutions that will help you become a better person and make you, in turn, happier. I’ve been rattling my brain for a while now thinking of “themes” for my months. For example, January is to get organized, and I wanted other to be things like “get active,” “get passionate,” and “get educated.”

In the past I’ve always thought, “okay this is the year where I’ll start getting getting fit,” or “this is the summer where I turn pretty.” And even when I was thinking of this project, I’ve thought “maybe this year I’ll learn how to do my makeup or build an actual wardrobe.” 

But I want to get rid of all of that. I’ve always said that I want to work on the inside the most, but my outer appearance has always been of equal importance.

Not this year.

I have this new image of the girl who will be writing her conclusion in a year. And maybe she looks exactly as I do right now–sitting braless at my computer with my second-day hair messily swept to the left side of my neck and my nail polish black and chipped.

Ah, the unattractive picture of a girl whose life is anything but together.

 

But she’s not the same girl as me, and her life is together. She’s intelligent and quick-witted and funny and she’s so caring and loving and radiates warmth everywhere she goes. She doesn’t take life too seriously, because she can recognize what’s important. And she doesn’t care what people think about her because she has learned how to make herself happy.

So maybe she doesn’t know how to apply eyeliner or have the willpower to choose salads over burgers, but this is the girl you want to meet. Well, maybe not everyone. Because she understands that everyone has their own opinion and even the most well-liked person is disliked by someone. She has no trouble remembering this, though.

She is truly herself and okay with it–happy, even–in every single way.

But oh my gosh you have to read this girl’s drunk journal! It’s hysterical.

And not at all depressing.

Sincerely,

Sammy

CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT

Dear Reader,

Happy New Year!

  
I’m writing this blog post on my phone in a bed 2 1/2 hours away as I wait for my friends to get up because, even though I don’t have that much to talk about, I have to write something. I mean, what kind of a start to the new year would this be if I didn’t make a blog post?

I read somewhere the other day (probably on Tumblr) something like “2015 was a year for character development. 2016 is going to be all action!” And although I immediately thought “yesss!” I also thought “eh, maybe I need another year for character development though.”

(I’m not going to get into the whole self-loathing bit right now because hey, it’s New Year’s Day and not even noon yet. Let’s keep those thoughts in my head.)

But here’s the wonderful thing about action-packed stories: character development never stops. In fact, it only seems to happen quicker once action is driving the plot. 

Have you guys seen the gifset that shows the difference in Effie from the reaping in THG to the one in CF? 

   
 
Everything that happened in the first book, that first year, changed Effie. Her character development didn’t involve a year of sitting out and reflecting on herself and deciding to become a better person–it came with all the action and the relationships she made and the craziness that ensued. 

So I’m excited for 2016. I’m excited for more stories and more memories with more people and hopefully some more action (don’t read that the wrong way). I’m excited to develop my character and I look forward to what I’ll be writing and who I’ll be this time next year. 

As always, I have hope for the future. 

Sincerely,

Sammy 

SOMETHING NEW FOR 2015

Dear Reader,

Have you seen those 365-day challenges on Facebook and Instagram? It became kind of a trend where I live and tons of people were posting daily pictures and recaps on social media and then, at the end of the year, they had all these lovely memories to look back on.

Well, I tried it. A few times actually.

I think the longest I lasted was 60 days…

But don’t worry–I’m not trying again! It just got to be a pain for me and I hate pictures enough as is, so the entire project was just not a good idea. But I really love the idea. I mean, so many of my friends have completed it and have this completed project to look back on and really see how everything changed throughout the year.

So I’m going to do something like it.

I’m just going to post weekly updates, and I’m not going to make it absolutely necessary for me to take a picture every single day, but I’m going to try this. I mean, I’ve already been writing on a regular basis lately (in journals and such), and I really need to get over my ridiculous self-conscience issues I have. Plus, I have the 2015 Bucket List to complete. So, I might as well try this out.

And then, at the end of the year, I’ll have 52 posts to help me reflect upon my year.

Sincerely,

Sammy