College Seniors: We’re Terrified

We are all just FREAKING OUT.

I don’t know if I could ever accurately describe what it feels like to be a senior in college.

I know that the hours of good sleep I get averages about maybe 15 hours a week.

I know that even though my head hits the pillow at 10 p.m., I fight my thoughts until I’m so exhausted my brain hurts too much to fall asleep.

By the time I wake up, I feel more exhausted then I did the day before.

I’m a full-time student with a 15-credit load who is in class 4 hours a day, works 5-8 hours a day and does homework for 2 hours every night on top of applying for jobs who say you’re under-qualified and inexperienced.

Even though I’ve worked three jobs in the field with two internships and a college degree.

I don’t even know where I’m going to be living in a month and a half let alone where I’ll be working.

And who is going to take a chance on a girl who has clawed her way to even have a shot at her dreams.

As a senior, you realize that the 16 years of schooling you’ve done, every single thing you know about routine, every system you are familiar with– it’s all about to change.

You are told you have to take a job you won’t love because we have to start somewhere.

We are told that the real world is awful and ruthless.

We have spent the last four years loving our peers and freedom and now it’s time to leave.

I have talked with other seniors about the countless panic attacks and breakdowns we’ve had in the past months.

Because when you’re told your entire life where to go and what to do- it’s terrifying to be thrown into a pit of self-doubt where your entire life is judged on a piece of paper and a 10 minute interview.

And we have to keep our head above water and tell ourselves to enjoy this last semester because our days are numbered.

We are all terrified and panicking.

We are all screaming with excitement to start our lives.

We just can’t tell you how or when they will start.

Seniors, I heard something from an older man who has been in our shoes and it is so simple it hurts. Don’t rush.

Easier said then done when we have been drilled to soar above expectations but remember to breathe. The right opportunity will come when it needs to.

Keep your head up and your heart strong.

Anna Marie

 

 

 

Why are we so scared?

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Don’t lose your sense of adventure.

Open up to strangers and invite love into your heart.

Sit on the bus and ask how the person to your left is doing.

It’s not creepy, it’s how we used to meet people.

Stand in line at a coffee shop and tell that girl who dressed up that she looks lovely.

She won’t give you a weird look, she’ll smile.

Pick up a book and read your favorite quote to someone you want to connect with.

Your favorite words will tell them so much more than your Facebook account.

Smile with your eyes and dress up so you can say damn, I look GOOD.

Stop racing for a goal and breathe in the moment you’re living.

Why are we so scared to live in a world where no matter what, you’re going to get hurt?

It’s true isn’t it?

No matter how guarded you are, how careful you are, how safe you live your life- you’re bound to get hurt at some point down the road.

Tripping on the side walk.

Criticized by your boss.

Rejected by your crush.

Hurt is going to happen.

So why do we fear it so much?

It’s a huge part of us.

A part of living, growing stronger and pushing forward.

I’ve seen people cringe from pain so much that they’ve become immune to being alive.

They hide themselves in a shell so tough that they can’t even begin to understand how someone could open it.

And it only grows thicker.

The part of them that could really live gets hidden as they go through the motions- waiting for anything to break through that shell.

Well it’s not up to a force of nature.

It’s up to you.

It’s up to you to face your fear and live in a world where you embrace rejection and let it push you.

By the thousandth time, you’ll be a professional.

By the thousandth no, you’ll hear “there’s a different plan”.

Don’t be scared to live. 

Embrace the fear and do it anyways because we’re all a little insane to hope that just enough courage will earn us the happiness we all deserve.

Until next time,

Anna Marie

 

 

To Be Inspired

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To be inspired is to laugh so hard your body shakes. 

To hug someone who has continuously given you their time and love.

To breathe a sigh of relief after a big test.

You know that feeling when you can feel something inside you building?

Courage, determination, strength or pure happiness?

And then you finally approach that person or run that extra mile and you just feel… good.

Not good- inspired.

Inspiration is driven from chalk being twirled and pressed into concrete.

From 26 letters of the alphabet creating a novel that erupts passion.

From that one person you couldn’t live without whose presence sends your mood to the moon.

It’s biting into a piece of pizza and closing your eyes because the combination is just right as it dances on your tongue.

It’s that wave of heat that encompasses you as you step from painfully frozen air into a heated building.

It’s the excitement of a stranger saying “Good Morning” or smiling at you just because they are  swallowed in their own happiness.

Inspiration comes from new eyes searching the world around you.

From appreciating the moments that we so easily forget.

Taking our pants off.

Falling into a warm bed.

Stretching sore muscles.

It’s the way we look at ordinary days.

Because those ordinary days make up our lives.

That’s how we will create an inspired life- by living and breathing the beauty that goes into simply waking up in a comfortable home that was created by you.

Until Next Time,

Anna Marie

 

 

In Case of Emergency

In case of emergency, press pause. 

Smash your rose colored glasses and instead paint your lenses black so you can’t see the possibility of love. 

Keep your mouth glued shut and write STOP on your forearm.

It’s a reminder to knock yourself down before you can possibly begin to fight.

In case of emergency, run away as fast as you can.

Build a wall so high and thick that your own paranoia is the only thing that can make you feel fear. 

Erase “emotion” from your vocabulary and become selfish so you can detach yourself from literally anyone you find yourself enjoying. 

What is the point of opening up anyways? 

In case of emergency, don’t label a single thing. 

They’re not your play thing, your significant other, your boyfriend, your girlfriend, your partner, your person that you’re kind of seeing. 

Labels mean you have to consider another person and God forbid this generation actually figures out their feelings. 

In case of emergency, never ever let yourself feel out of control and just end things before they are ended for you.

This is not okay but it’s the reality of how we date today.

Change the way we date. Take cowardice out of the equation.

Until tomorrow,

Anna Marie

 

 

This Is How You’re Going To Love Me

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This is how you’re going to love me.

You’re going to fall right in.

You’re going to realize immediately that I care really fast and all at once.

I’ve tried being the aloof, mysterious girl you’ll have to chase.

But I’m not.

You’re going to appreciate that.

You’re going to love that I never played games with you- that I never made your mind reel and question what I want.

You’re going to be scared by how open I am, it’s going to all feel like too much.

But you’ll know pretty quickly how rare it is to find someone as vulnerable yet strong as I am.

I’m going to ask you hard questions, push you to open up, say things that catch you off guard and lay it all out on the line.

You’ll be ready to handle that.

You will answer every question with thought and tell me stories until 3 am when our eyes are shutting against our will.

You will be strong enough to know what I’m offering and handle every piece of my heart with care.

You will know exactly what you’re giving to me and trust me not to give up on you.

You’re going to learn about me.

Why trust doesn’t come easy to me, what I’m scared of, what I’ve struggled through… it will make you understand why I became this version of myself.

You’re going to tell me how you’ve become the person you are.

We are going to want to know everything about each other.

We are going to ask questions.

You’re going to laugh as hard as I do about the silly things and fight for your beliefs and values.

You’re going to show kindness to everyone around you and unknowingly make me a better person.

Being around me is going to do the same.

We will empower each other, support each other and laugh with each other.

You’re going to get mad at me but you won’t leave, you’ll be the first person to stay.

Because differences will happen but we both will choose to work through them.

You’ll stay because you’ll choose to love me through the hardest parts of life and dance with me through the highlight reel of life.

You’ll become my best friend and my number one fan.

You’re going to love the simplicity of being together.

You will look at me with that “she’s the one I choose” look and it will give me butterflies.

You will find that I give too much, dream really big and love deeper than you’ve ever experienced.

You’re not going to hold back.

And the idea of love is not going to scare you after a while- maybe it will seem like a lot at first- but no, you’re going to see me standing before you and you’re going to know that if there is one place you will be for the rest of your life, it will be by my side.

I can’t wait to be by yours.

Until tomorrow,

Anna Marie

 

 

Screw Technology

This is what pain feels like. 

Pain is feeling completely isolated when surrounded by a group of people who barely look up.

Pain is your courage to finally share a story to a room of people looking down at their cellphones, unable to so much as glance in your direction to hear about your vivid excitement or obvious distress.

Pain is not a single person in the room looking up to make eye contact with you, just solemn “mhms” and nods that are part of a performance- of how they should be reacting to make you feel “important”.

Pain is when someone finally looks you in the eye, you breathe a sigh of relief and gratitude because you are finally being heard, until you catch their thumbs moving automatically… not even needing sight to be imprisoned by a screen.

Pain is getting to the rising action and recognizing that not a single person is looking at you.

Pain is stopping mid-sentence in complete defeat, only to feel unworthy when no one realizes you’ve ended your attempt at conversation.

Pain is having this happen to you over and over again.

When was the last time you were truly WITH someone? When was the last time you turned your phone off so you could drink in every syllable of someone who trusts you to take an interest in their life?

Can you comprehend the utterly gut wrenching pain that shoots throughout someone when you look at your phone in the middle of a conversation?

Do you know how awful it feels to think you don’t matter because a text, a Facebook notification, a like is more important then the time someone is spending with you?

It’s ridiculous.

If you care about someone, prove it. Give them your undivided attention. Ask them questions, engage with them, ask them how their day is.

How often do we actually get asked how our days are that isn’t just a subtle formality? 

How often does someone actually care about how our days went?

No one deserves to feel like this.

Put your phone down and show someone you care.

Put your phone down and save the relationships you haven’t already damaged.

Put your phone down and respect someone’s time with you.

Just put your damn phone down. 

Until tomorrow,

Anna Marie

 

 

 

Are We There Yet?

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We all want to “find ourselves” or “create ourselves”. Well, are you there yet? 

Who I am is a bi-product of all of you.

Your compliments, your support, your insults.

Your presence has pushed me down, pushed me over, pushed me skyward.

Who I am is a reflection of how I chose to react to all of you.

Whether to fight with nasty words or bite my tongue, flip tables or sit at one calmly, let rage burn me down or fuel build me higher.

I am a direct correlation of responses to all of YOU.

To love fiercely as I have been loved, help a hand in need as I have been helped, pass on the kindness that has been given to me.

We can learn much easier and much quicker by following the examples of those around us… of you. 

You want to know what you created?

This is who I am.

I am fiercely passionate about people.

I care vastly and deeply, sometimes quite overwhelmingly so.

I laugh frequently and uninhibitedly, scaring the pain right out of my system.

I have become stronger than I can recognize through let down after let down and rejection slapping me in the face.

I’ve been brought down to me knees to realize that I can always stand back up.

My favorite feeling in the world is sunshine kissing my skin and the ocean sand squishing between my toes.

I long for adventure through mountain tops and exploring country after country. And I’ll do it, too.

I’m undeniably comfortable with the person I’ve become and overwhelmingly excited for the woman I intend to create.

Pride is hard work and deep breaths.

Humbleness is never forgetting the struggles you’ve chosen to fight through to get you where you are.

Ambition is recognizing the struggles you will have to face to accomplish the life you want so badly to live.

The life you are living right now.

Are we there yet?

Until next time,

Anna Marie

 

 

For The Ones Who Can’t Control It

ameDon’t you always just want a little more zest or a little less fear?

I was talking with my childhood best friend about how we both need to borrow a few qualities from one another. I tend to be the gal who’s feelings never ask my permission to start growing and developing and she tends to be the one who runs at any sign of attachment.

“I wish I could feel as much and as quickly as you do, it’s brave.”

“I wish I could think through people and reality before deciding the best way to go forward with someone.”

We all have our vices, we all have our strengths.

 

And I often care much too quickly and far too much.

I can’t help it. 

I can meet a stranger in a line to get our coffee and hear all about their awful day, go home and think for hours about how they are hopefully turning their night around.

I am an avid lover of stories and when people trust me with one of their tales, I instantly want to help, encourage or push them.

It’s truly an uncontrollable urge for me to get involved with every single person I meet. (Unless you’re really that awful.)

So when it comes to falling for someone in the romantic setting, I intimidate myself.

I didn’t choose the waterfall of emotions life, it chose me. 😉

Below I wrote a string of words about how falling feels for the ones who can’t control it.

I Fall. 

With the same inhibitions of a violent rainstorm, I’ll fall.

And if I fall, know that it was not my confidence that lead to every thought and feeling pouring out of me.

Know that I fell without knowledge, with subtle reluctance, with weary prayers and hope that I’ve clung to for years.

Know that I can’t help but fall for kind words and sweet memories and good mornings filled with laughter.

Know that I fall hard and quick, never pausing to recognize the fear my heart pumps through my veins or the caution my brain is trying to engage in.

With the same control of a raging river, I’ll fall.

Until next time,

Anna Marie 🙂

What are you doing?

I’m going to tell you something.

In this moment, no one cares about what you’re doing.

No one cares if you’re reading a book or watching Netflix.

No one is wondering if you’re deciding to put on make up or going to curl your hair.

No one wants to know if you went on a 6 mile run or walked ten steps to the bathroom.

These moments, every moment, is about you.

I’m giving you the freedom to understand that you are allowed to be selfish.

I’m also telling you that it is completely up to you what you do.

If you choose to watch Netflix while munching on the nearest snack food for 8 straight hours, is that going to get you to your “dream life” that you ponder every so often?

Is skipping class going to give you satisfaction?

We tell our friends, family and strangers our plans, our goals and our dreams.

I want to lose weight, I want to read 20 books this next year, I want to put my phone down more often.

In the end though, we find ourselves stuck in this place that is stagnant and comfortable.

We are laying in bed thinking how much EASIER it would be to just not do anything.

It sure would, wouldn’t it?

That’s the difference between creating a life full of pushing boundaries  or staying where you are. 

The need to be able to push yourself and motivate yourself every single day.

The hunger for success whether it be to eat more vegetables or smile at strangers.

The satisfaction upon completing a goal you’ve been working at for months.

No one cares what you are doing right now.

But these days that you stay stuck will turn into weeks and those weeks into months and those months into years until you realize that this is your life. 

We have all thought about where we want to be in a few years but it doesn’t just magically happen.

We have to strive and push ourselves every single day for it.

We create our lives by doing things that make us happy.

So what are you going to do today that will make you happy? Not comfortable, but happy.

Until Next Time,

Anna Marie

You Must Decide To Rise

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Breathe.

Breathe in light.

Breathe out darkness.

Raise your palms to the sun so your fingertips can be touched by hope.

Close your eyes so you can imagine how blessed you are to be so loved.

Wild and free.

Wind blowing throw fields of sunflowers so yellow it’s petals drip happiness.

Free as the birds who fly anywhere and everywhere with the option of home always in their hearts.

Wild as the drinks that make you dance on table tops and kiss strangers.

Breathe in.

If only to feel alive because spontaneity is played by those who crave adventure.

It’s for those who crave each other. 

Lust and love.

Fall in love with a one night stand for just one night but promise to respect your body.

Crave love in everyone you meet and long for a soul that will understand your own.

Have the patience of your mother and keep her strength too.

Be brave like trees swaying in hurricanes.

Pray for the opportunity to spread positivity.

Love fiercely, move fearlessly and chase what everyone is too scared to run after. 

Rejection isn’t for the weak- it’s for the willing who know they are capable of rising.

And you must decide to rise. 

Until Tomorrow,

Anna Marie