Stay

You asked me once when I was going to write about us and I’d laugh and brush it off and say someday. See the thing about writing about the most important people in your life makes everything between the two so real. I was scared to put it into words because once you put it out there, you can’t take it back. You open yourself up so the world can see and you’re no longer hiding. I took pride in the hidden, in the secrets between two, oblivious to the world around them.

The first time I met you I figured we would go on a date and never talk again but you crashed into my life, wrecking all misconceptions I’ve ever had about relationships. We talked about everything under sun and you got to know me in a way no one has ever bothered to. And with every passing day I fell even harder. But then you had to leave and we made promises to continue this. A few months of long distance would be worth it and we would be together again. Doubts are there, they creep in my weakest moments when I question whether or not we can actually do this. I think you know better than anyone that we are going to have an epic love story, the kind that’s written in novels and movies. The kind you pass on to your children and their children.

Someone once told me that loving someone can’t be enough to make them stay. And it’s true; if a bird wants to fly, you can’t keep it in a cage, all you can hope for is that the bird will remember how good they had it and whether leaving is worth the chance of not having something so beautiful again. And I know how you are, M. How when you’re stressed you shut out from the world and how you think you aren’t good enough. You don’t need to be enough, “enough” is a myth. A lie we tell ourselves when we are afraid. Afraid of getting hurt. Afraid of wanting something so badly we mess up. But when you love someone, it is messy. It’s messy and consumes you whole, leaving a different person behind in your wake.

I learned a long time you can’t make a home out a person but if i could, you would be that person. You would be my home. And I’m scared too; but I believe that you are worth every single bit of it. We are worth it. Don’t give up on us before our story even really gets started because when I think about who I want next to me when my hair turns grey and I forgot my name, it’s you, M. It will always be you. Still, after everything, I will choose you. I will love you, always and forever, just like we promised all those nights.

And if you’re wondering why it took almost three months to write about you, it’s because of this. I have never met someone who has made me want to become a better person. All the things I used to be interested in, things that weren’t good for me, are no longer things I want to participate in. After the last few days, I became scared that this may be ending already and it’s not what I want. I did the only thing I could think of, write it all out. Like how I wrote you all those letters before you left because that was the only way I could think of to stay close to you while you’re 800 miles away. Just remember that it doesn’t have to be like this for long, and we can be gouda if that’s what you still want.

xoxo.

kkb.

Why I Broke Up With Tinder

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I just need to clear my mind, clear the endless space running through this place. I’ve been living life in rewind lately, memories racing and filled with regret. My friends tell me that I haven’t been myself but for the sake of honesty, I cannot remember the last time I was myself. I don’t even know if I ever really know who I was. I feel like I’ve just been showing the parts of my self the world wants to see. I keep so much of myself hidden and frankly I am damn tired of hiding. I never fully understood the whole “finding yourself” thing until this past year. If I really want to find myself, I need to be brutally honest with my failures and mistakes and I need to make peace with the ghosts of my past.

I deleted Tinder about two months ago. I had it for over a year and for those who know me, they know that I pride myself on the amount of matches I had. My girlfriends and I would compete with each other to see who would get the most matches and for a long time, I was in the lead. I thought it was fun, to portray myself as this carefree girl but again, I don’t think I am as carefree as I thought. It was fun to be chased. I would have several different boys I would be talking to every day and several dates a week. But I kept going from one to another. I would get bored or they would decide that they didnt want me. But I was okay with that. On to the next swipe right. I would thrive off the validation and attention from boys whose names I no longer remember and whose beds have been long cold. 

I would smile and laugh and flirt my way through but after, I would feel so low, it was like I wasn’t feeling anything at all. I would ditch my friends to go meet up with a different boy. At the height of it all, I was seeing five different guys within a month. My friends were worried. I stopped going out with them. I would ignore their texts or pretend I was sleeping when they knocked on my door. I was in the middle of a terrible self loathing and there was a point where I no longer wanted to live. I could never act on it but there were several times where I truly wondered who would miss me. I came home from one of these dates around 3am at the end of March to find two of my closest friends sitting outside my dorm, crying. I didn’t realize that they were crying for me. The conversation that followed would break my heart completely, leaving the pieces shattered on the floor. But they had to break me so i could learn to fix myself. Because they were right. I deserved better than what I was getting and I was being someone I never wanted to be. I was being someone that I hope and pray to God that my future daughter never becomes. I was settling for late night “wyd” texts and boys I would never normally socialize with.

In my friend group, I am the life of the party. I’ve been told I’m obnoxious and I really have always thrived off of attention. Even in kindergarten, my teacher wrote on my report card that I am a people pleaser and would do anything for attention and praise from my peers and man was she right. I never saw it as a problem until recently. Because I have been so fixated on getting attention and being the girl that everyone likes, I never really figured out who I am. 

There’s a stereotype that girls on Tinder are looking for self-validation and as embarrassing as this is to say, I will admit, that at least for me, it’s true. I’ve always thought I was a pretty confident person but there is something about getting match after match after match and heart eyes emoji and dates on Saturday nights that makes me feel so good, for awhile at least. But I now know that I was using Tinder as a distraction, to make me feel something when all I’ve been feeling is nothing.

A boy told me once that I am undateable. That I am just a good time. Something fun to be had until something better comes along. He was right. He was right in the sense that I have always dated boys who have never seen me as a priority. I have always been the backup plan, the option until someone better than me arrives. It’s just as much their fault, as it is mine. Because I have never really respected myself enough to let go of boys who refuse to see my worth. 

I deleted Tinder because I no longer want to be seen as an option; just another girl in your long list of matches. I deleted Tinder because I need to learn to respect myself, to love myself, to find myself. I can’t do any of that while being this beautiful, carefree girl that everyone else sees. I deleted Tinder because in my experience, those boys were not boys I should have been dating and lets be real, most boys on there are college aged just looking for their new slam piece for a few months until they get tired or bored or busy or find somebody new. And I don’t know about you but I am sick and tired of this damn hookup culture. I was a part of it but now I’m done with it.

I am still learning. I am still growing. I am still hopeful that one day I will find someone who will see me as a priority and will actually treat me well. Until then, I am unfinished. He was right. I am undateable. I am undateable because I am realizing my value. I am finding my voice. I no longer ask someone to stay with me even after they say they’re done. I deleted over 100 c0ntacts and pictures of boys who are no longer a part of my life. I won’t lie, deleting a few of them was difficult but it needed to be done. I am starting over, a fresh plate, a clean slate. I am working on myself, for myself, by myself. Because one day, I will meet my game changer, if I haven’t already and I want to be ready. I want to be dateable.

xoxo

Katie

 

You.

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I’ve been dodging the questions about you for some time now. How can I give the answers to them when I barely even know what happened myself? One minute we were there, the next we weren’t. We were stuck in the rip tide, just barely above the surface and gasping for air. I thought you were my lifeline but you left me in the cold and let me drown.

I had always thought it was beautiful; to be able to put my life into words; until I met you. I had always been able to put my life into boxes. Everything had categories. There was my family and friends, my hopes and dreams. My hurts and fears had always been shelved. They were never touched. I didn’t talk about them; instead I let those boxes sit there covered in dust but you came in to my life like a gentle tornado, knocking those boxes down and dusting them off and opening them up all in the hopes of discovering what really went on behind this pretty face. And I let you. For the first time in my life, I willingly opened myself up in ways I never had before. And I always asked myself why. I never understood it and I don’t think you did either, but maybe this will help.

I think there comes a time in our lives when we are tired of holding on to our pasts. We  are tired of letting the wrong people into our lives. We are tired of letting the mistakes of others and disappointments and failed relationships control what our future looks like. We reach a point where we just want something new and fresh. We want to take chances and try to be little bit better than who we used to be. And we are different, you and I; the reasons and the ways we were hurt but it doesn’t matter. I mean that when I say it doesn’t matter for I have never been interested in comparing our pasts and seeing who is more “broken.” But I think I realized this sooner than you did. I realized that I didn’t want to let my past control my future. You may have wanted this too but you still held on to your ghosts. Baby, you can’t move on if you let those ghosts still haunt you. And all I ever wanted was for you to put them in their grave where they belonged and be free for once. I wanted to be the one to give your weary heart a break.

That cold February night, I spent three hours writing you a letter and when I was done, I called my best friend telling her how much of an idiot I was and that it was dumb thinking that a silly little letter could be our Hail Mary because you see even before you ended us, I had known it was coming all along. And I guess I read too many books and watch too many movies because naive little me didn’t realize that those things don’t work in real life. But she convinced me to keep the letter and give it to you but I was hoping that it wouldn’t get to that point. I packed up your things in the bag I would always bring over on the weekends and put the letter inside that gray sweatshirt, the one I would always wear to bed when we weren’t together. And we talked and laughed and talked some more and I had hope. We were swinging high up but then we came crashing down. So you gathered my things and walked me to my car and I gave you back your clothes, praying to whoever would listen that this letter stay in the shirt because the last thing I needed was for it to fall out, like everything else did that night. You were the hardest goodbye I’ve ever had and walking away from you broke me in two.

But it was cowardly, that letter and it makes me a hypocrite because I’m the one who always preaches about how we should say whatever is on our minds but with you, I couldn’t. You told me once that I terrified you but I don’t think you realized just how terrified I was too. You were uncharted territory, land waiting to be discovered. And you have your bumps and hills and hide behind the trees because it’s easier for you but I know, I know somewhere inside the bruised land you live in, that you are aching to be discovered as well, even if you can’t admit it yet. And if I could take that letter back, I would. I would take it back and just tell you to your face exactly how I feel. But I was too scared to tell you I love you because I was terrified that it would scare you off. I was terrified that you weren’t ready; that your wounds hadn’t been healed yet. I was terrified that I was just a rebound and that I really didn’t mean much more to you than just a good time and someone to get along with. So I held off and held it in. I was the strong one, braving your storm. I wanted so badly to make it all better for you and to take the pain of your past away from you.

You asked me that night if I meant it when I said that no matter how far people may wander from each other, if two people are meant to be together, they will find their way back to each other. You should know better than anyone that I always mean what I say. I’ve never really been a believer in the whole right people, wrong timing thing. That is, until I met you.

It took me two months to write this. Mostly because I know you’ll read it and I am terrified of how it will make you feel. See I don’t want to cause any more problems for you so I held myself back for two months and I hope you understand, that I can’t hold myself back for people anymore. And maybe you’ll think I’m crazy but trust me when I say that my overactive mind has overthought every possible outcome of this and I’ve made peace with it. You were a part of my life and it’s not something I can hide or erase or put in a box because it meant something to me; you mean something to me. And I wouldn’t be doing anyone any favors by acting like we never happened.

I walked away and I hope and pray to God that you’re doing well. Because even if it’s not with me, I just want you to be happy and I want you to do whatever it takes to find happiness and reach your full potential because I could never forgive myself if I took you away from your dreams. That’s part of why I fell in love with you, seeing how passionate you are towards your goals and that’s also why I walked away from you and didn’t fight as hard as I could have. But I meant it when I said that people come back. My life is a testament to that, people leave and they come back. Some people you just don’t give up on, even when they think that you’re better off without them. Some people are worth the wait. You are worth the wait.

xoxo.

katie

 

 

101 In 1001

 

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I have always been obsessed with lists and goals. Ask anyone who knows me, my notes section in my phone is filled with things I need to do and my desk is covered in post it notes with goals ranging from “pay off a credit card” to “get a new car” to everything in between. I was recently talking to a friend about how stressed out I’ve been lately because my life has been super hectic these last few months and she told me about this concept of making a list of 101 goals you want to accomplish in 1001 days. I find it extremely interesting because the things I want to accomplish at 21 are probably completely different than what I will want at 24 and I think it will be cool to look back and see what I used to want and who I used to be. Without further ado and in no particular order, here’s my list.

Start Date: March 20, 2016

End Date: December 15, 2018

  1. Run and WIN a full marathon
  2. Adopt a dog (or several) from the animal shelter
  3. Publish a book
  4. Pay off all credit cards
  5. Get my personal trainer certification
  6. Make the 500 lb club at the gym
  7. Visit all 50 states
  8. Kiss someone I love in Paris
  9. Visit the Sydney Opera House
  10. Hike the Kalalau Trail in Hawaii
  11. Buy a house
  12. Be consistently happy
  13. Blog once a week
  14. Fall in love
  15. Volunteer once a month
  16. Be a good friend
  17. Buy a car
  18. Go to Coachella
  19. Go to a wine tasting festival
  20. Go to the Kentucky Derby
  21. Spend New Years Eve at Times Square in NYC with someone I love
  22. Make the 625 lb club at the gym
  23. Create my own run clinic for children
  24. Go to church
  25. Save $10,000
  26. Go to the airport and take the first flight to wherever it’s going for a week
  27. Be spontaneous
  28. Become a vegan
  29. Grow my own fruits and vegetables for a summer
  30. Go to the Daytona 500
  31. Take an actual spring break
  32. Spend a summer road tripping around the US
  33. Open my own gym with a focus on running clinics
  34. Go to a music awards show
  35. Make the 750 lb club at the gym
  36. Be less afraid to tell people how I really feel about them
  37. Learn to say “no” more often and put myself first sometimes
  38. Climb to the top of the Hollywood sign
  39. Have dinner on a rooftop
  40. Cook for someone I love
  41. Go back to New Jersey and visit friends I haven’t seen in awhile
  42. Spend a few weeks in the summer back in Charleston
  43. Go home more often
  44. Drive all night but not on a highway with no directions and eat breakfast in the first town I get to in the morning
  45. Race every weekend in the spring/summer/fall/maybe winter
  46. Clean out my closet and get rid of clothes I don’t wear or have never worn
  47. Write love letters and give them to random people
  48. Start scrapbooking my life
  49. Take more pictures of the people I love and the memories I make
  50. Dress up as an old couple with a significant other but do childlike activities (go karts, laser tag, the zoo.)
  51. Make writing my career and fitness a hobby
  52. Run and win the Boston Marathon
  53. and New York
  54. and Chicago
  55. Call my Mammaw every week
  56. Drink 120 ounces of water every day
  57. Smile more
  58. Go on a juice cleanse for a week
  59. Grow a garden
  60. Give 10 “just because” gifts
  61. Go 3 days without social media
  62. Go paddle boarding
  63. Go on a canoe/kayak/camping trip
  64. Attend New York Fashion Week
  65. Open online clothing & accessories boutique
  66. Read 1 book a month
  67. Reach 10,000 page views on both blogs
  68. Reach 10,000 subscribers on both blogs
  69. Attend a blogging conference
  70. Vlog all my traveling and spontaneous adventures
  71. Own an everyday designer bag
  72. Swim with turtles
  73. Go cliff jumping
  74. Go to Electric Daisy Carnival
  75. Kiss someone in the rain
  76. Yoga every day for a month
  77. Eat at 5 Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives restaurants
  78. Go for a hike and have a picnic after
  79. Have a staycation
  80. Wake up early and watch the sun rise
  81. Celebrate Mardi Gras in New Orleans
  82. Make breakfast in bed
  83. Eat an entire week of Pinterest meals
  84. Save $10 for every goal accomplished
  85. Inspire someone to create their own 101 in 1001 list
  86. Finish writing a journal for my future husband to give him on our wedding day
  87. Start journals for my future children
  88. Go to open houses and act as if I’m interested in the house
  89. Spend an afternoon people watching and creating stories about their lives
  90. Go to the Super Bowl
  91. Do something outside of my comfort zone
  92. Get over my fear of rollercoasters
  93. Visit Alnwick Castle in England
  94. Go on a cruise
  95. Create a Youtube channel
  96. Write a song
  97. Don’t buy anything that isn’t a necessity for 3 months
  98. Save at least $300 a month
  99. Start and finish a series on Netflix with a significant other
  100. Eat at restaurants I’ve never been to for every meal for a week
  101. Do something that I would never normally do

That’s it folks. If you want to create your own 101 in 1001, link back to me so I can read your own lists.

xoxo.

katie

Are You There God? It’s Me.

I’ve let the sadness creep back in again lately. It was quiet, a slow crawl to my soul that shakes and rattles my core. It moves slowly and comes when I’m alone. When my day is over and I shut my door, it’s there. Waiting. Mocking me as if to say, “you thought you could escape me but surprise, you can’t.” It’s there when I turn on the saddest old country songs loudly and sink to the floor in my shower as if the scolding hot water can wash all the dirt and filth off of me. I sit there, hugging my knees and rocking back and forth for hours as the day fades to night and my Bose speaker dies leaving me in silence with nothing but my own thoughts running through my head. I stare at the drain, the circle of water swirling down it, hoping and wishing that the drain could take all my pain away too. That the dirtiness and filthiness and mistakes and regrets can be washed away too. But it can’t. It’s not 8 gallons of water that will take these burdens off me, I know.

I’ve slipped. I knew it all along but I thought I could hide the sadness behind my friendships. I thought the more outgoing I became, the smaller it would get. I let myself get swept away in kisses from too many boys all in the hopes that even the smallest bit off affection could take away what I’ve been feeling. I became someone I never wanted to be. I held my distance. I took the shots and tried to withstand the fall. It’s taken me five months to admit to this. When the sad moments came and it took all my strength to pull myself off the floor. He was there, knocking on the door, saying “Let me in. I can take all this off you. Just let me back in.” But I slammed he door in His face and went about my way. I’ve written about the brokenness and the sadness before. I’ve written about what it was like to be lost and then found and I’ve always thought it could be an inspiration to others. That’s not what I want anymore. I am not someone that people should look up to because I am a mess. I’ve turned my back on everything and everyone that was there for me and I don’t know how to turn it all back around.

I think this is the part where I turn back to God but I think my pride is getting in the way. I want to be the one to take care of myself and everything and everyone around me and I think that’s where I’m failing. I’m spreading myself too thin and everyone is just taking a piece of me, a piece that I won’t get back. It’s like a game I play every day. I wake up and it’s like, “hey how many pieces of myself can I give away today?” I can’t get it back. It’s like I’m trying to climb up a mountain but without anything to hold on to, I’m just trying to scratch and crawl my way to the top. I can just see God laughing at that right now, a tiny girl trying to climb onto something that is 1000x bigger than her. I think that’s all of us though. We are all trying to climb mountains of life that are bigger than us and we think we can do it on our own, but we can’t. We can’t do it on our own. We think we’re getting somewhere, that we’re making our way up the mountain but we slip. We lose our grasp and the pebbles fall and then the pebbles turn to rocks and we are bloody and beaten. We are dirty, hanging on for dear life. And then we drop.

I’ve been dropping for awhile God, and I gave up. For a few moments, every time, I give up. I hang my head. I beg and plead and cry to not be covered in the dirt anymore but that won’t get me anywhere. I know it’s You, I need. And I know I’m a filth covered sinner who doesn’t deserve you. I make mistakes and lately it seems like everything I touch, breaks. Every person, every heart. Maybe that’s You trying to get me to come back to You. And I’m sorry, I left. But I’m coming back. That counts for something right God? I may have left but you never left me and now I’m coming back God okay? And I know I have no right to ask for anything but God, can you use me for something? Clean the dirt off me and dust my heart off.  Make me beautiful again and mold me and shape me into something that can be of use to You. Take my brokenness and sadness and make me whole again. That’s what I want God, to be a part of something greater than myself. Make me greater than myself God.

xoxo.

katie