Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Truly charming.

The end of the school year always makes me a little nostalgic--and this year is worse than all the rest.

I graduate this next year, and it's making me feel some type of way about this being the last time for a lot of things up here.
This year has challenged, changed, broke, taught, fixed, and shaped me like nothing really has. It was nothing like I expected it would be...and somehow everything I needed.
This year has been about new adventures, lessons learned, and finding out who I am and what's important to me. For the first time, I feel like I learned what college was really about, and finally validated what everybody tells you about college. You know those pieces of advice that come with graduating high school, or those little anecdotes that seem to happen during everybody else's college career? Hi, welcome to my junior year of college and everything I learned.
I learned the truth behind how wonderful it is to move out of the house and how much fun it is to be out on  your own. I also learned how great it feels to pull into my driveway to a bundle of my squealing sisters and forget about school for a minute. 
I learned just what everyone means when they say you'll make your best friends in college: the people I met up here have become my family. I also learned how it feels to long for the people who used to claim those spots. 
I've learned what love feels like beyond high school dances and midnight curfews, but I also learned that the real thing hurts a lot more and involves significantly more emotion. 
I know what people mean when they say you learn how to stand on your own two feet and be an adult, but I also realized that it's okay to call your mom at 1:30 in the morning about a boy. 
I know what meeting new people is like, but I also know what it feels like to say goodbye to high school friends.
I've learned about biology and mitosis, and how to start conversations with girls during sorority recruitment. 
I've read enough Caribbean Literature to last a lifetime, and I learned how to write missionary emails and letters like a pro.
I studied physics for a hot minute, and realized I actually like to cook things that aren't just Ramen or chicken nuggets. 
I read a lot of American Literature and folklore, and finally admitted that I'm really bad at taking relationship advice from anybody else, and emotional stability is not something I'm super good at. 
I wrote papers on feminism, racism, and poetic voice, and recognized that sometimes you have to do things that make you happy, that might make other people unhappy. 
This year has been full of all sorts of learning, every kind of heartbreak, a touch of denial, a lot of emotion, redefined love and loss, and brought the most overwhelming kind of contentment and satisfaction I have ever experienced. 
"The first one is the worst one," "when it rains it pours," "life is what you make it," blah, blah, blah, you name the cliche, Year Three embodied it. But nothing proved quite as true as "the third time is the charm." 

Junior year, you were truly charming. Now here's to you, senior year! 

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy Mother's Day.

Moms are there to get rid of the monsters in your closet when you're little, and to distract you from the ugliness of the real world when you're older. 
Moms are there to put bandaids on scraped knees, and to hold together broken hearts. 
Moms are there to help with science fair projects in elementary school, and help determine the correct frosting consistency from an hour away. 
Moms are there to drive you anywhere you need to go as a child, and to wait up for you when you drive home as a [kind of] adult. 

I'm more grateful for my mama every single day, because now I realize how much I took her for granted before. She's the first person I call when I get asked on a date, and the first person I call when I'm home from that date. She's the only person who's cooking advice I trust. She's the only one who I know won't judge me for being catty about some things, but will listen, and kindly tell me to "be the bigger person, Ash." She knows my frustrations better than anybody, gives the best advice...and it doesn't hurt that all of this usually involves some kind of cupcake or frosting too. ;) 
Because only my mom would have dinner waiting for me in the fridge every weekend I came home. Only my mom would answer the phone at 1:30 in the morning and talk sense into me through my broken-hearted tears, and then proceed to come up with a plan as a "closet mobster." Only my mom understands my love for Audrey Hepburn, Michael Buble, and Fiiz. 
She's a cake-making wizard who somehow finds the time to be superwoman to 6 bundles of chaos and if someday I can be half the mother she is, I'll be the happiest mom on the planet. 

So here's to you Mom. Thank you for teaching me how to bake, to appreciate music, and how manage my sanity reasonably well. Thank you for teaching me about unconditional love, true forgiveness, and strength--no matter the circumstance. Thank you for helping me believe in everything, from this wonderful gospel to the magic of literature and everything in between. Thank you for teaching me what I am capable of, showing me when I need to change, and helping me recognize when I deserve better than I think. 
Thank you for being my best friend.