Saturday, April 30, 2011


I am in Redding.

This is so bizarre. Last night I saw an old friend and found her to be much like me - at least in how things have changed. Life happened in the two years since I last saw her and an even more calming maturity has settled on her. And exciting times are happening for her and it was wonderful to reunite just now.

However, I am now sharing a hotel room with my loveliest of roommates, which is strange for many reasons:
1. I am in a hotel room in Redding. I'm not staying with a friend. I spent 3 years of my life here. Once upon a time I knew people here very intimately. Now, I just a stranger, a guest, a traveller. Now I stay in hotels.

2. My roommate also lived here once, but after me. She was here for just a few months. But I know there is some strangeness for her too. I am glad we are here together. (I love my roommate.)

3. The last time I staid in this hotel, I was 18 and playing Volleyball for Multnomah.

Today I will attend a Simpson University graduation ceremony. My lovely young mentee, Jenny Lawler, will walk across the stage and receive the degree that took her 5 years to earn. She will be a college graduate and I am so ridiculously proud of her.

I did not spend time thinking, before this very morning, how it would feel to be in Redding and how it would feel to be at yet another Simpson Graduation. The last one I went to was my own. I will see professors, and friends and people I haven't seen or talked to in 4 years. And then I must come to grips with the fact that the life I lived here was 4 years ago.

Last night Katie and I talked about Andrew... and I realized that the last time she heard me talk about him, I still had not yet processed much of our relationship. I also had not yet felt settled and secure enough about my opinions about my life and the world to be able to unapologetically explain where I am coming from and who I am. Last night was refreshing. I am not afraid of my life. I am, however, afraid of today.

Here is my saving grace: This day is so not about me and the people I might bump into. It is about Jenni Lawler and her huge achievement. It is about being here with her and with people I love who have loved me my entire life. It is about being that friend, that adult, that person that can look at this girl whom I have loved my entire life and being glowingly proud of how amazing she is. So I will likely bump into people. But who cares. I am me and I am not afraid of my life.

I remain. I am still here.

And in 4 hours I will be with Julie.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Cancer Rant

Facebook has it's pros and cons. One con that typically pisses me off is the status posting in which people try to repost statuses (stati?) for certain causes.

For Example: All of us have thousands of wishes. To be thinner, to be bigger, have more money, have a cool car, a day off, a new phone, to date the person of your dreams. A cancer patient only has one wish, to kick cancer's ass. I know that 97% of you won't post this as your status, but my friends will be the 3% that do. In honor of someone who died or is fighting cancer, or even had cancer, please repost

May I just say this: Cancer does not make other wishes and dreams go away. It's not like the minute you get cancer your life goals and hopes go out the window. Or like Cancer Patients cease to be people and suddenly only live the life of Cancer. I want to post a rebuttal, but am not witty enough to say all of this in a couple of lines of text that will somehow shut up the people that just want to post and repost about how they know someone who has cancer and wishes they could beat it. 

On that note, two new polyps showed up in daddy's stomach. The testing shows that they are benign, but we are supposed to keep watching them over time. I'm not worried. I mean, this is really no big deal... just some bumps that aren't going to grow and damage him. But, there are moments when I think it's all got to come back eventually. Other moments I just think the post cancer care will be a part of my life forever and ever. That is almost as depressing. 

Mom is doing well. It's almost like she doesn't have cancer, except that I worry about her all the time. And the part where she needs to spend my wedding money on things like paying cancer bills. I wish I could just find a way to make all of the family take care of each other. If only their lives weren't so important and I could just manage the lives of everyone. I am pretty sure we would all be happy with the outcome. 

Alas. I can't fix any of this. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Communication Station

Communicating has its difficult and easy moments for me. I think for most people. I am really good at communicating when I have boundaries and expectations. I get really bad at communicating when I don't.

For example, I am perfectly fine not talking to someone if I know that we aren't going to talk that day. However, if I think we are going to talk, and we don't, I get very emotional very very fast.

It's kind of ridiculous really, because although my head is saying to me, "Rebecca, this is not a big deal. Really, there are so many rational explanations. This does not mean you are not wanted or unimportant." my heart is saying to me, "You are entirely rejected and unwanted. Run and hide now before this hurts even more than it already does. GO NOW!!!"  So I sit and cry and laugh at myself at the same time, and try to make myself breath, although breathing, much like drinking water when I need to vomit, only makes matters worse.

This week has been a practice in figuring out my side of communication needs.

I need:
to know when we aren't going to talk and why
to know what style of communication (email, gchat, in person, phone, etc) is acceptable for which conversations
to remember that my needs are okay and not always ridiculous
to know that needing does not make me needy

In a "Love Languages" perspective, I am very much a Quality Time and a Words of Encouragement person. I love presents, but only because they are surprises and I naturally love surprise, but for me it's really about being known, and I don't often believe you can know me without tons of experience (time) and then I won't know that you know me unless you tell me (words). I feel silly most of the time admitting that. But it's true.

I think a lot of my insecurity surrounding communication and needing links back to my abandonment issues. My dad left when I was so young, and in a much different and yet startlingly related sense, my own dear and lovely mother abandoned me right after high school. Waiting for someone to show up always brings up the picture of me, somewhere around 10, sitting on the couch in front of our living room window, facing the street in front of our house. I would kneel backwards on the couch so I could see the street and every car that went by. There I would stay all day and far into the evening waiting for my father to show up... he would call, and I would have the phone there next to me so I wouldn't have to move to answer it. Again and again he would say, "I'll be there soon, baby." And again and again I would believe him. And again and again he would not come. And my heart would break again and again.

It's hard for that little girl in my head, sitting on the couch, waiting for you, to remember that if you don't show up, you aren't abandoning me. It's a hard lesson every single time I have to relearn it. And lately I am relearning it with alarming rapidity.

So tonight I am going out with a special girlie who always has the knack of making me happy again, and I'm going to forget about communication for a while.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Falling in and out of love

I am falling out of love with my job. It's an enlightening experience regarding love in general. I still recognize all of the things I love about my job, but the things I hate cloud my vision all of the time and take away all of my motivation to continue to build any sort of life for myself here. I want a new job, not because I hate what I do, but because I want a fresh breath. I want to feel revitalized. I want to believe in people again.

I am, however, not falling out of love with love. I am falling in love with love. I cannot say that I love my boyfriend, because I'm not there yet, but I can tell you that I am falling in love with falling in love. I know that my feelings for him are growing and I adore this process. Even the hard days like today, when all I want is to talk to him about a pressing issue which he has clearly said we will not talk about until we are together tomorrow instead of talking about it on the phone or gchat today, which I would prefer just to get it out of the way and off of my list of things to worry about. Even then, I still know that I love falling for him. I love that every time I close my browser and see his face on my background, I smile because I just adore him.


I am also falling in love with the process of figuring out what I am going to do with myself when he starts residency. Right now, the only thing to do is to start school again. Grad school? Maybe... right now I just want to take a class or two and just figure out where I want to be. What do I want to study. Right now I know that I want to be in Grad School in the next two years. Right now, I don't think I want to leave Seattle, but maybe I will change my mind. So I'm looking at summer classes and fall classes that I can take in the evening to start making up my mind about my future. Without Grandpa here to tell me his opinion, I have a lot of work to do to figure out what I want and who I am.

But love is there... to lift us up where we belong. or something like that.