Falling

            I ride my bike, I ski, I hike… but I never push myself because I’m afraid of falling. I’ve been skiing every winter since I was about five, yet I’ve never ventured onto a black diamond run. Most people my age in my town who ski can confidently conquer double black diamond runs. And to be honest, I should have been able to progress to the harder runs, but I’ve always been afraid. A million different scenarios and bad endings race through my head. So I stick to the runs I’ve known for years. I’ve only fallen about three times since middle school, and that was because my boots didn’t fit into my bindings right, so that didn’t have anything to do with my skiing or the difficulty.

            I’m not really trying to blab about skiing, sorry about that. But I find that this fear of falling carries through to other aspects of my life. I don’t “put myself out there” because I’m afraid of embarrassing myself. I don’t try new things or meet new people or do things I’m not good at. There is a lot I avoid so I don’t fall.

            I’ve had a crush on this guy for almost a year (Yes, this blog is kind of about a guy. Sorry, I’m a nineteen year old girl, I can’t help it!). I see him around campus almost every day and when we run into each other this is how our conversation goes:

            Him: “Hi <insert name here>”

            Me: “Hi”

            Him: “How are ya?”

            Me: “Good, how are you?

            Him: “Good.”

            It’s just riveting, isn’t it? Now, I know, I could use some serious work in my people skills. Half the time when I say hi to people (including Him) all that comes out is a quiet squeak. I’ve always thought that’s just my shyness creeping in, which it is. But lately I’ve been wondering why that shyness still exists.

            I was always a quiet kid. I never left my mom’s side, not even at family parties. I’m not a touchy person, I don’t talk much, and I don’t express about my feelings or thoughts (blogging doesn’t count). I’ve always felt that it was easier to talk to my dog than kids at school and I was never even close to being semi-almost-kinda popular (i.e. I was rather unpopular).

            But I wonder if there’s a point when my shyness stopped being a characteristic and started being an escape. Lots of people are able to outgrow their timid nature. My shyness only got bad in about 8th grade and peaked my sophomore year in high school. But for the last three years I’ve really felt like I’ve made strides becoming more friendly and outgoing and quieting the voices in my head that tell me that no one likes me and no one wants me around (not literal voices, I’m not that crazy). I feel like I reverted a bit this summer, being in my hometown and not having any friends there sucks. But I think I’m back on the road to working on my problems and improving myself.

            This post wasn’t really supposed to be about shyness, or skiing, or even a guy; but I think the point I’m trying to make is that so much in my life decided by fear. My shyness, my inability to push myself, and my failure to show my feelings is all driven my fear.

            Maybe, if I can overcome my irrational instinct to fear everything the rest of my life will fall into place. Now, I just need to figure out how to overcome that darn fear! Maybe a subject for another completely random disjointed blog =).

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Abigail Brown: Chapter 17

            Abigail woke up the next day feeling new. Not the kind of new she had wanted to be a few nights ago, a type of new so much better than that.

            Everything was OK. Sure, Abigail had almost lost a great friend and she had totally betrayed a roommate she falsely thought she knew. But somehow she felt that things were better than they’d been in… maybe forever.

            The sun shone on her face and she knew there was just one more thing she had to do to make things right. The problem was, she didn’t know exactly how to fix what came next. But, she really hadn’t known anything all along and things had turned out right.

            Abbey stretched her arms toward the ceiling and smiled wide. She may only be five foot one and a half, but she felt like she could take on anything this morning.

            Abigail Brown walked down the ridiculously long hallway of Harley Housing, where Luke supposedly lived. She’d done a bit of Facebook stalking to figure out exactly where he lived. It was creepy, she would admit to anyone, but her intentions were to get in and out before anyone could notice her. This is going to be easy, she thought. But inside she felt herself shrinking an inch with every step she took.

            The door to room 312 is covered in cheesy name tags and emblems from various football teams. Abbey glances up and down the hallway quickly before she removes the plain white envelope labeled “Luke” from her purse. She quickly bends down and pushes it under the door before she can change her mind.

            The contents of the letter were an odd mixture of an apology and an angry rant. She is genuinely sorry for what she’d done and sorry that it had resulted in Destiny breaking up with him. But she was also mad at him for what had happened. He had waited until she was drunk and about to pass out, then he had looked deep into her eyes and made her melt.

            The kiss with jerk number one may have been her first kiss ever, but it meant nothing to her. But the kiss with Luke hurt. She had liked him, she hated to admit it, but she had a crush on her roommate’s boyfriend.

            It hurt because she knew it didn’t mean anything to him. She was just the drunk girl on the couch who was willing to kiss him. Abigail hated that she had let herself fall for a jerk, fall into his eyes, and do something she knew was wrong.

            Of course, Abbey didn’t admit any of this in her letter. She’d just written that she’d regretted everything from that night, she was mad at herself and him, and she just wanted to move on and forget about the whole thing and mostly forget about him.

            Abigail stood up and smiled at his door, completely happy to be done with him forever. Part of her knew that the number one reason that she had liked him to begin with was because he was unavailable. It’s so easy to want someone you know you will never have; it’s all daydreaming and no actual doing. He was also taken by the one girl Abigail envied more than any of the others, although she would never admit this.

            But Abbey was ready put all of this behind her. She was sick of envying and daydreaming, she was finally happy with herself and finally felt like she had started really living.

            As she walked down the stairs, Abbey couldn’t help but feel that something still wasn’t quite right. That’s when she saw someone she never wanted to see again.

Note: Only one chapter left!

Realizations

I’ve been thinking a lot about my future lately. I know I want to be a novelist, but I don’t know how exactly I know that.  I’ve been writing like crazy since… um, forever (or, since I learned to write). But I only really decided to be a novelist 2 or 3 years ago. When I was really little I wanted to be a pro basketball player, then I wanted to be president, then I wanted to work in a morgue or be a crime scene investigator. Through middle school I wanted to be a scientist and find a cure for diseases. But that fell apart when I realized 2 things: 1.) I was really no good at science and 2.) I was suddenly squeamish. And I say suddenly because in 8th grade I went on a science field trip and got to see a human cadaver up close, and I thought it was awesome. I thought dead things were awesome. Then that summer my dog of 16 years (longer than my whole life at the time) died and I never wanted to see another dead or dying creature for as long as I lived.

                After that we did dissections in biology and that made me really hate science. So I turned my focus to liberal arts. I tried art, I wanted to like history, and politics really did interest me but I was too shy to argue for my opinion. I did explore veterinary medicine for my senior project because I love animals maybe even more than I love writing, but I always knew that I could never be strong enough to deal with dying animals, and I could really never euthanize an animal. That left English. I didn’t even realize how much I loved English until I ran out of other options. Then I remembered that I had loved every English class I’d ever taken, I’d always turned to books or writing when I needed to de-stress, and it was something that I was actually good at. Upon this realization I decided that what I really wanted to be was a journalist. Again, my shy personality took that out of the running and I’d suddenly started looking at books differently. When I thought about writing a book it just seemed so right, it seemed to fit me perfectly: I’m good at writing, I love writing, I narrate things in my head as they happen (odd, but true). Suddenly I knew my life’s purpose, I knew what I wanted to study, I knew what I wanted to do until I die, and I knew it was something that would make me happy forever.

                Now I’m positive that I want to be a novelist (That’s not my realization). But I have realized that I can do that and more. I love writing, but it’s not the only thing I love. I’m still interested in politics and animals and so much more. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I’ve been bored and wanting a change lately. I think I’ve finally decided what to do about it. I’m going to add two minors to my English Major: a minor in Pre-Law and a minor in Film Studies. If I love law, I can pursue law school; if I love film I can pursue that. There’s no commitment, and no matter what I chose I can keep writing all the time.

                I also came to another conclusion: I’m not ready to write a book right now. I don’t have all the skills I need, and I also don’t have enough life experience. I was trying to rush myself into writing a complete book as fast as I could because I thought that would prove that I really loved it and could make a life out of it. My mom’s been bugging me lately about finding a career path that I could actually make money on. I thought choosing a backup plan meant giving up on my dream. But now I realize that having a backup is not only the responsible thing to do, but it also shows that I’m not ever going to give up on my dream of being a novelist. Because I know that even if I’m never able to make enough money to live on from writing, I will keep writing because I love it.

Day Dreaming

                I go back to school for my sophomore year of college in just two weeks. I’m super excited! I feel like school is where I belong. I don’t really fit in at my hometown, and honestly I don’t even have any friends here. I’m really excited to see my new roommate, who has been my best friend since we started hanging out last year. And I’m excited for a new year of pep band, and new classes with new people, and hanging out in the cafeteria laughing with friends, and going to the free movie on Friday night, and study groups in the library before finals. There is a lot to be excited about, but what I’ve been day dreaming about most is a guy, of course.

                Chances are I won’t even see him very often. He’s going to be in Greek housing across campus and I don’t think we will have any classes together. But that doesn’t keep me from day dreaming. I have notoriously bad luck with guys, meaning that I have no luck with them whatsoever. I’ve never even been asked out. Somehow, despite all this, I’m still a dreamer. I kind of wish I wasn’t, because I just get my hopes up and nothing ever happens. I wish I didn’t sit around thinking about his strawberry blond curls and bright blue eyes. And I really wish I didn’t imagine actually having a good conversation with him. Because it’s not going to happen. I’ve talked to him before, and even had descent conversations, but he was just being friendly because he’s a friendly guy and I happened to run into him a lot last year. But I won’t be running into him anymore, so I might just get a friendly “hi” or a smile and then that will fizzle out to nothing and we’ll just act like strangers.

                I really wish something would happen between us, but I know it won’t. I know this because I know the only way something would happen is if I make a move, and I know I won’t make a move. Last year I did the boldest thing I’ve ever done for a guy and I offered to drive him to the airport before Thanksgiving vacation. But he canceled last-minute, and that was the end of that. I’m too afraid of rejection to make a move or even hint that I like him. I really wish I could just be one of the girls who walks up to guys and asks them out, but instead I’m a shy mouse.

                I don’t really know where I’m going with this. I just wish I could be a different person sometimes. And I wish for once my day dreams would come true. I’m sick of being a dreamer and not a doer.

Abigail Brown: Chapter 16

            Abigail walked back to her dorm, trying to figure out what she was going to say to Destiny. She hadn’t just kissed some random girl’s boyfriend; she’d kissed her roommate’s boyfriend. Sure she was drunk, and she barely remembered doing it, but she knew it was wrong while it was happening. She was sure of that.

            She was still thinking this over as she slid her key into her door. She was hoping Destiny would be out with her friends or in the library, anywhere but here. But there she was, sitting on her bed hunched over her chemistry book with a pen in her mouth and papers scattered all around her.

            Destiny glanced up at Abigail as she walked in, but quickly averted her eyes back to her studies.

            I have to do this now, Abigail thought as she inhaled deeply before launching into her well thought out apology. Well, it was well thought out until Abbey opened her mouth, but what came out was close enough. “I really messed up. I’m sorry I hurt you like that… I swear I never planned on drinking that much. It’s just that I’ve never really drank before, and I got really nervous and I made some really bad decisions… but that’s no excuse. I’m sorry… and Chloe told me about how I got back here last night. And I’m really sorry you had to help me after I was so horrible to you, but thanks.” She paused and held back tears as she finished her rant, “I’m sorry, and it’s ok if you never talk to me again. I would understand.” Abbey felt like she’d been talking for an hour, and she felt as if she’d left her guts on the floor. So when she looked up and noticed that Destiny had never looked back up and had on a pair of big black headphones, the kind that covers your entire ear, she wasn’t sure if she was relieved or upset that her apology had gone unheard.

            Abigail sat down defeated and gently placed her head on her desk. Abigail thought she might drift off into a sleep when she heard Destiny’s voice float across the room in soft words, “What you did was horrible, but you’re not the first girl he’s made out with at a party. Although I would expect more from my own roommate,” Abigail cringed at the acidity in her voice, but she deserved it. “But I’m not going to hate you forever over this. Luke’s a douche bag, and you were really wasted. I’m kind of glad to have a reason to dump his ass.” Abigail couldn’t believe what she was hearing.

            “I’m still mad at you, but I know how you were last night isn’t the real you. I’ve seen the real you,” Destiny said nonchalantly. Abigail hid her face in the crook of her arm and let fat warm tears slide down her face.