Confessions of a Basic Bitch

Being a Basic Bitch is the worst, but having Basic Bitch moments is okay…right? I mean we all have them, at least I hope it’s not just me. Try to refrain from judgment while I list the ten most Basic things I have ever done, in no particular order. Let’s go.

1. Changing from yoga pants to leggings before going out. Because black stretch pants that don’t flare at the bottom are perfect for the bar, but black stretch pants that do flare are more conducive to pretending you just left a spin class.

2. Going vegetarian for a week. For no reason other than going vegetarian for a week.

3. Having a Pitch Perfect Pandora station, in a non-ironic way, that I blast while driving anywhere to get fro-yo.

4. Seeing “chia seed pudding” as a recent search on Pinterest…which brings us to

5. A semi-full wedding board complete with dresses, rings, and DIY projects…and no boyfriend in sight.

6. Watching every episode of Breaking Bad during my list finals week of college.

7. Being so hungover that I couldn’t get out of bed until 6 pm, then harnessing just enough energy (and $5) to get in the car to for spicy chicken sandwich and fries from the Wendy’s drive through while still in pajamas.

8. Practicing calligraphy by filling a notebook with ~inspirational~ quotes. Many of which have been titles of my other posts.

9.  Eating kale.

and finally,

10. Drunkenly ordering chicken sandwiches with my best friend on Good Friday and then waiting until midnight to actually eat them. #priorities

Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.

****Trigger warning – eating disorders.****

Take care of your body, it’s the only place you have to live.

Think about that when you don’t eat all day because you plan on drinking your calories at night,

When you google how many calories are in an apple, and drink your coffee black (even though you hate it)

When your beautiful best friend asks if she looks fat in the outfit she was so excited about…before she stepped in front of the mirror,

When that selfie doesn’t get as many likes as you had hoped,

When you hear “fat”, and know it was chosen as the insult that would hurt you the most,

When you keep pushing at the gym even though you feel sick,

When you lie to the people who love you… “No thanks, I just ate.” “I’m not hungry”,

When someone makes a joke about you needing to have a cheeseburger,

When your hair starts to thin, or you always feel cold, or you realize your heart can stop beating at any moment,

When you accept that you need help,

When you think about who will suffer the same way if something doesn’t change soon.

It’s National Eating Disorders Awareness Week. Far too many lives are touched each moment by eating disorders, the most lethal of mental illnesses. They do not discriminate, and effect men and women of all cultural backgrounds. They are about gaining power and control in a life that seems too chaotic to handle. If you or someone you love is struggling with disordered eating, please talk to someone. Nothing will change until we talk, empathize with the suffering, support the recovering, and prevent the future cases.

Life is beautiful…and so are you.

http://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/ helpline – 800.931.2237

xo

50 Shades of…Shade

Okay, so every time I put on Pandora, try to watch a YouTube video, or walk past a TV, that awful, slow version of “Crazy in Love” starts playing and the 50 Shades of Grey promotion begins. This could be a cosmic sign to lessen my social media consumption, but I don’t think that’s the point.To be real, I haven’t read the books. However, I did read all of the Twilight Saga while in high school, and know that the 50 Shades books originated as fan-fiction in dedication to Stephanie Meyer. So, Mr. Grey is based on Edward Cullen, who literally has only two characteristics – 1. being hot and 2. being cray cray. I can’t even describe Bella, now Anastasia, because she has no personality other than needing to follow Edward around like a small child or a puppy. She does have brown hair though, just in case you were wondering. What I’m wondering, is why are so many people anxiously awaiting for this movie to be released on Valentine’s Day? Why do we, as a society, have the general consensus (as evidenced by massive book sales and movie advertisements), that it’s okay to show this kind of relationship as an acceptable one? Why do we have a weak female lead with no discernible sense of self, and a man with no respect for her safety or desires? Why do we STILL tell little girls that the little boy picking on them is probably expressing his crush on her? Why is emotional/physical/sexual abuse not terrifying and hard to watch?

“Nothing ever goes away until it teaches us what we need to know.” Maybe this series of books or the release of this movie is helping us to spark a discussion. Talk about it on the internet, in class, or on the train where the ads are displayed. Talk about how abuse is not, and never will be, love. Talk about how sex needs to be consented to by both people participating, and that it can be stopped at any time when one of those people feels uncomfortable or unsafe. Talk about books with positive relationships, and characters that have more personality traits that can be listed using one hand. Talk to anyone who will listen.

xo

Perhaps this is the moment for which you have been created

Esther 4:14

Near the top of the list of the things I am most thankful for is that my parents sent me to Catholic school from kindergarten through 12th grade. That I learned about prayer, attended mass on weekends and Holy days, and taught first graders CCD to fulfill my service hours. I pray to St. Anthony when I lose something, and to St. Jude when things seem hopeless. I get hit by a wave of nostalgia when I see kids in plaid jumpers with little cross ties. Although I am much less devout now than when I was at the height of my Catholic school based faith, I never really stopped praying. That’s the great thing about religion. If you avoid all of the politics and just take the spiritual belief that God loves you and has a plan for you, you get this amazing sense of peace.

I was particularly inspired to write this post after binge watching a Lifetime special series over the weekend when I was sick and called out of work. The show, obviously, was “The Sisterhood: Becoming Nuns.” Magical. It’s about this group of twenty-something girls who start discernment and ultimately decide if they want to join a convent. They got to do all of this wonderful work with people in their community, and it was crazy to watch these girls who are my age, in 2014 no less, visiting convents and seriously considering joining The Sisterhood.

In school we were always told to listen for our Calling, whether it be to the religious life, married life, or single life. Just to know, or rather to believe, that you were created with a purpose to do something that will forever impact the world is amazing and terrifying at the same time. Even if you stopped going to church, or confession, or saying your bedtime prayers, God is still there. And will be there forever, waiting to help you find the path meant for you. I’m pretty sure I won’t feel called to be a nun, but I do believe I’m being called to do something else. I know I’m supposed to write, and I know I’m supposed to find a job in which I can truly help and inspire people. I know I’m supposed to stop and reflect on how blessed I have been throughout my life. That I have a college education, a roof over my head, and food on my plate. That I should go outside more and appreciate the beauty that can be found wherever you look. That I should pray to say “thank you” more than to say “help me.” That one day I’ll encounter that moment where I feel like I have learned what I was born to do.

xo

Given how much we agree life is a miracle, we sure do bitch about it a lot

Deciding to make the most of whatever situation you find yourself in is the key to happiness. Staying positive when you’re broke, tired of studying, and just want to go drown in some frozen yogurt is pretty much the only thing that will get you through the week. Plus the countdown on your phone & your never ending playlist of motivational music. So in the midst of holiday crowds, finals, and the end of the year, today’s post is going to be about my biggest pet peeves. We all need to vent if we want to remain relatively sane, so here we go…

1. When people say “Barnes and NobleS”. Girl, read the sign outside the bookstore. It CLEARLY says, in giant green lettering, that the name of the store is Barnes and Noble.

2. Tell me you don’t eat fruit because of the sugar. This one really makes my skin crawl. Even a starchy fruit like a banana is so much better for you than cakes or sweetened drinks. Fiber, vitamins, and a little sugar >>>> sugar, fat, and empty calories.

3. Chipped nail polish.

4. Not holding the door for the person behind you even though they’re only a few feet behind. If you do this to me and are within earshot by the time I enter the door I opened myself, you will definitely hear a loud “THANK YOU” for nothing, that will hopefully make you question your life choices.

5. The sound of grinding teeth. Kill me.

6. “Supposively.” Open a book & spare me a little secondhand embarrassment.

7. Being rude to wait staff or cashiers is basically a flashing sign that you’re a terrible person. Whatever your issue is, it’s probably not your server’s or cashier’s fault. Try reading your coupons, or posted signs, and not being nasty to the kid who’s probably just trying to make it through college so they never have to do their current job again.

8. #instagood, #instamood, #likeforfollows, etc. Not only do these hashtags not make any sense, but they take up twelve lines of space under the selfie that I don’t particularly care about already. #millennialstruggles

9.  The photo documentation of every month you have spent with your boyfriend. 3 months is not a milestone. You’re over the age of 12. If you have to prove your grand love with a monthly post, maybe you should take a break from filtering and captioning your #anniversarypic and go on a real date.

And finally…

10. Slow walkers. Able-bodied people who choose to walk at a glacial pace in the middle of the sidewalk/hallway/staircase so you can’t go around them…OMG THE WORST.

Merry Christmas and Good Luck on finals! Try not to snap at the next person who lets the door slam in your face or makes an annoying post on social media.

xo

“Everything is an act when you’re pleasing everyone”

“Feminism” is becoming less and less taboo every day. Sexual assault on college campuses is finally being addressed in mainstream media and people are learning to stop blaming the victim, or question what they were wearing or drinking. “Real beauty” campaigns are encouraging young women and other companies to embrace different body shapes, skin tones, and lifestyles. Women have careers and families.

So in this millennial age, where everything is documented on cell phones and social media, why are nude photographs of women still so shattering to their image? Leaked photos find their way on to the Internet from mistrusted ex-boyfriends and hacked iCloud accounts and become the subject of Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter, and and Instagram posts. Why is the body still viewed as scandalous or wrong in a time when women seem to be able to do anything?

I’m a big believer in the saying that if you’re pleasing everyone, you’re doing something wrong, but I’m also a big believer in personal responsibility. Love yourself, and love your body. If you take a picture you don’t want the whole world to see, don’t take it. It’s incredibly immoral, and illegal, to steal someone’s photos and distribute them against that person’s will. Of course, the victim of the situation is not to blame for simply taking a picture, and the body should not be regarded as “shameful” by anybody. Unfortunately, in 2014, privacy is pretty much a thing of the past, so be careful of what you send to people or store on your phone or computer. Nothing is truly protected.

At this point changing the way that women who take these pictures are viewed is equally important to the way that the person who stole them is viewed. The thief should be regarded as a criminal, just as the victim should be viewed as that – a victim of a sexually based crime. No more or less a role model, actor, or singer than before the supposed scandal found its way to the mainstream and social media outlets. A women who has now had her reputation forever changed, and unfortunately, her body scrutinized by people she never intended to show.

Be proud of who you are. And absolutely cause a little controversy – because if people are talking about you, you’re probably doing something right.

Xo

“Life may not be the party we were hoping for, but while we’re here we should dance.”

Want to know what’s really great? Driving on a beautiful fall morning with Christmas music playing, even if it’s only October. Reading a book that inspires you to be not only a better writer, but also a better human being. Having the type of parents who paid for 13 years of private Catholic education and then scrounged up more money to help with my college tuition. Seeing friends that you lost touch with years ago at the bar & catching up like nothing happened. Mainly because neither of you can remember what that last big fight was actually about. Celebrating birthdays. Being able to fall in and out of relying on prayer & believing in something bigger than this world. Being so overwhelmingly happy when things finally fall into place for a dear friend who deserves a break more than anyone you’ve ever met. Getting margaritas for less than $5 and finding sweaters on sale. Living in a place where self expression is encouraged and appreciated. Not having to wonder if there will be food on your table. Having a job that allows me to practice patience and clarity of communication. Being given another day.

Every day isn’t great. Sometimes your mom gets sick. Sometimes you get in a car accident. Sometimes you screw up an important project. Sometimes you say things you regret & can’t take back. All you can do is wake up the next day and make things better. Apologize. Pray. Research. Learn. Grow.

Live.

Xo

Reality Leaves a lot to the Imagination

I could probably (definitely) watch TLC for 3 days straight without getting bored. These reality shows can’t compete with anything else on TV. Polygamists, brides, and huge families all leave me with questions that will, unfortunately, remain unanswered. We just have to embrace the content we’re given with acceptance and humor. For example…

“19 Kids and Counting” – First of all, I’ve been a fan since it was 17 Kids and Counting…just so you know my exquisite taste has not been recently acquired. Second of all, how is Michelle always so calm? Girlfriend has literally been pregnant for my entire life. (That’s 22 years) She always speaks like she’s being recorded for a motivational/self-help CD. Why is the “side hug” a thing? Why do they choose not to hold hands until they get engaged? (Spoiler – the answer is to protect their hearts, but what does that even mean?) Is Jana super bitter about still being at home raising those kids? Is Jill still going to be a midwife? Why is the driving age in Arkansas only 14?????

“Four Weddings” – Why are you constantly complaining that your steak is rare? Why do you think the bride has provide the three people that know nothing about her with a pamphlet guide of the ceremony? I think it’s safe to assume that they will never care about said religion again. #byefelicia Do you think the bride is enjoying the rain/cold/wind/whatever and that it’s only an inconvenience to you?

“Sister Wives/My Five Wives” – Why is a woman marrying 4 or 5 men not a thing yet? It’s 2014, after all. Why is Kody’s hair so long? Who actually dreams of being a third wife as a little girl??? What are you going to do with that philosophy degree?

“I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant” – HOW? How are you and the baby healthy after 9 months of drinking, manual labor, or whatever else happened during your unknown pregnancy. Why wasn’t there some kind of doctor appointment during that whole time period? These women always have some health concerns but just decide to self medicate and somehow it works out for them. I just don’t understand anything about this one.

“What Not to Wear” – Stacey, please dye that gray streak. You look ridiculous, not distinguished. Can I get on this show if I buy a bunch of ugly clothes to get a free shopping spree? Why does this makeup artist give everyone the exact same look? Also, you didn’t invent highlighting. Sorry.

“Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” – I don’t even question anything on this show. I accept the cheese balls, stockpile of toilet paper, and subtitled English with open arms. Watch it. Love it.

Finally, the fact that TLC stands for “The Learning Channel” – LOL

xo

Comparison is the Thief of Joy

Wake up, make coffee, check Facebook/Instagram/Twitter: typical morning in the lives of Basic Bitches everywhere. Confession time. I actually hate checking Facebook. All you see are posts bragging about grades/jobs/significant others/working out/eating paleo/whatever. I am all about sharing the positive things in your life. Support and compassion make the world go around. I don’t, however, see why it’s necessary to make a status (feeling #Blessed, obviously) to share your joy with hundreds of people you haven’t been in communication with in God knows how many years. You want to rack up “likes” and congratulatory comments from people who are practically strangers to validate your life experience. What did people do before they could screenshot their job offers or write a single line that could be shared with thousands of people in a span of a minute. You mean to tell me that we just shared their happiness with our family and close friends, got real hugs, and words of congratulations spoken aloud? What a crazy thought. I suppose I could just be bitter, but even though I don’t currently have some new wonderful accomplishment to post on Facebook, the truth I have never updated a status with the sole purpose of sharing some new detail of my personal life with a bunch of people who don’t know a whole lot about me. Sometimes it is hard to keep from comparing yourself to the people on your newsfeed. You may be compelled to think why didn’t I get an offer like that? Or why didn’t my boyfriend do that nice thing for me? Or why can’t I take a selfie that looks so good? People only know what you choose to tell them. Naturally, social media is filled with the positives, which is a wonderful thing, but we all need to remember all of the positive things in our own lives. Validating your experiences for yourself, knowing in your heart that you are enough and are doing the best you can, is so much more fulfilling than 103 likes from people you never see outside of the social media box.

xo

“Music is what feelings sound like”

I usually don’t listen to the radio. I always listen to Pandora in the car and on my computer whenever I’m getting some work done. Naturally, whenever I do turn on a radio, I’m overwhelmed with nostalgia. There’s a collection of songs that define each year of my college experience. Since I graduated, the back to school commercials that  keep infiltrating my life make me moderately sad. So here’s a musical trip down memory lane…

Freshman year 2010-2011

“Dynamite” (Taio Cruz) – If you ask me what I remember about Welcome Week 2010, it was constantly hearing this song at every event. It was also countless awkward encounters as everyone desperately attempted friendships with their floor-mates. Some of those worked out, and some didn’t, but “Dynamite” will forever remind me of the good old first days of the college experience.

“Summer of ’69” (Bryan Adams) – Who doesn’t love this throwback? Hearing this one takes me back to the room across from my freshman RA where my side of the floor would regularly congregate to take shots of the most disgusting vodka in existence. The genius that is my boy Bryan Adams would serenade us on Fridays as we drunkenly sang along on the nights we wanted to “stay in” from the chaos of fraternity parties and avoid jungle juice. Thanks Bry, I’m forever indebted to you. 

Sophomore Year 2011- 2012 

“Saturday Night” (Jessica Mauboy), “Man I Feel Like a Woman” (Shania Twain), & “Like a G6″ (Far East Movement) – Also known as the pregame music of my fraternity party frequenting lifestyle. These songs best go with seven shots of Dragonberry Bacardi, chased with orange juice, surrounded by the most basic of your girlfriends on Thursday/Friday nights before you have to deal with the drama of the weekend bus schedule to get away from and back to your campus. 

“Sexy and I Know It” (LMFAO) – The song assigned to my pledge class when I joined my Greek organization in the fall of my sophomore year, AKA when I made the best friends of the next three years. Whenever I hear this one, I remember the feeling of finding my place at my big university.

Junior Year 2012-2013

“Don’t Stop Believing” (Journey) and “Die Young” (Ke$ha) – Junior year is when I turned 21 and could legally belt these songs in any bar. This usually was reserved for between 1 and 2 AM with a crowd of white girls who had about four LITs (at $2 each, duh) and loved life. #live Honorable mention to “You Don’t Know You’re Beautiful” (1D – obvs) which was the 1 AM song of choice in friends’ houses where  the judgment was kept to a minimum, even after a bottle of Andre. 

“Wonderwall” (Oasis) – Junior year is also the first year I participated in a dance marathon for 32 hours in an effort to raise money and awareness for a local foundation that helps kids battling cancer and other blood disorders. Around 4 AM, 17ish hours into the marathon, “Wonderwall” starts playing. Now, we were all about three years old when this song was first released but somehow all remember loving it during our preteen/early high school years. It was just the push we needed to reignite our spark for the marathon when our energy was fading fast,

Senior Year 2013-2014

“Last Week’s Alcohol” (Kerrigan-Lowermilk, performed by Matt Doyle) – Soundtrack to my mental breakdown/ final study session for physiology. I listened to this song on a loop for the entire respiratory chapter, and have no regrets. I also passed the class, so snaps for this girl.

“First Date” (Blink 182) or anything that plays on All American Rejects Pandora – In our old age, my friends and I would relive our high school days by blasting these songs at any and every pregame of senior year before passing our wisdom down to the next generation. 

“Good Riddance” (Green Day) – Just for the tears.

Whenever these songs play, memories rush back & I know that I just left behind 4 of the best years of my life. They remind me that I have a great education and even greater friends to carry into future adventures – which will, of course, feature their own soundtrack.

xo