Archives for September 2020

Managing rage: Finding magic when the world is burning

I’m not good at being angry. If we get in a fight, odds are, I’ll want to hug it out and be happy hours or even minutes later. I don’t want to fight. I don’t want to be mad at someone or something.

If something makes me mad, I’ll rage about it for a few minutes, and then I’ll suggest we go get ice cream. When I’ve had a bad day? I make a cheese plate. When I feel like the world is going to shit, I’ll buy an annual pass to Walt Disney World and fly my ass down to Orlando multiple times a year. Because joy. And we all deserve a little joy. So I spread it where I can.

Woman Holding annual passholder card in front of EPCOT Spaceship Earth

My joy does not mean I’m not watching and listening and yelling at the top of my lungs. It doesn’t mean I’m not angry. But we all need a bright light. I need a bright light. I need to shine my light.

Sure, I’d rather look at the positive and not talk about what a shit show of a year it is, was, or will be. I’d rather put my energy into the bright side of things than the despair and frustration that seems to be the focus for a lot of people. That doesn’t mean I don’t see or feel the sadness. That doesn’t mean I don’t see or feel the rage.

So let’s be clear: Rage looks different on everyone. Rage looks different every day in every situation.

We are living in an actual nightmare right now. I am angry all the time. I am angry about racism. I am angry about Covid. I am angry that the leaders of our country are putting capitalism before BASIC HUMAN NEEDS. I am angry that Black men and women are considered less important than fucking drywall. I am angry that people are losing what it means to be compassionate. I am FUCKING FURIOUS right now.

Believe me when I say that rioting and smashing some corporate elitist bullshit buildings doesn’t sound like such a bad plan to me (so don’t @ me if you think I just wish people would protest quietly and peacefully. The Black community has tried that, and it clearly didn’t work (You didn’t listen when Colin Kaepernick quietly took a knee. You didn’t listen when the NBA wore t-shirts printed with “I can’t breath.” You didn’t listen when they protested on the streets “peacefully.” So now some people are going to make noise. And for God’s sake, LISTEN. And if you’re only listening to one voice —particularly those of you who only hear the rhetoric of the likes of Candace Owens — you’re not listening. You’re looking for an echo chamber. That’s not listening.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve cried because the world feels so fucking hopeless. I am sunshine and rainbows as much as I can be, and I’ve found myself questioning life in ways I never thought I would question life. I’ve asked what’s the point? I’ve asked why are we even here? Are we just going to blow ourselves up? The answer is most likely “probably.”

But I push forward and try to smile through my rage because underneath my rage, there is hope.

We all have a part to play in this world. Let me be a beacon when I can be a beacon, so when the world is cloudy and gray, you can find your way. Welcome my light instead of shooting it down and telling me what you think I don’t see. If you’re out there fighting the good fight, know that I’m supporting you. Know that I’m fighting the fight the best way I can. Because I SEE you. You need love and light and joy.

For better or worse, this is the present we are living, and my only goal is to live a life that will make my nieces, nephews, and hypothetical children proud. To give them memories of joy and wonder. So that when they grow up, they have a guiding light to make us proud.

Racism in the United States is as real of a pandemic as Covid 19. There’s no easy cure and the long-term effects can be and are devastating. It can sneak into every system undetected until it’s ravaged whole communities. The biggest difference is that racism is a much older pandemic. We must do everything in our power to fight racism and REMOVE RACIST LEADERS FROM OUR GOVERNMENT.

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Real love: We’ve spent 12.5% of our marriage in a pandemic

Brian and I got married on September 16, 2016. We joke that we chose the date so that it’s easier to remember, but anyone who’s planned a wedding knows that the venue and the vendors are really the ones that set the date.

It just so happened to work out that we got married on the 16th in 2016.

It just so happened that we got married on the night of the Harvest Moon (and can indeed celebrate our mooniversary in addition to the actual date).

And it just so happened that after being together for nearly 10 years, there’s no one else I’d want to be isolated with. Which is great because in addition to some pretty intense self-isolation March through May, we’ve been self-isolating since my covid test on Saturday for a cortisone injection this morning. I spent the afternoon recovering on my belly on the couch with an ice pack on my back in the hopes that there’d be a lobster (for me) and steak (for Brian) dinner in our near future (about an hour from now).

As an empathic extrovert, being cooped up in a house is akin to actual torture for me, but Brian and I found ways to appreciate our time together. Now that he’s home all the time, we can eat lunch together. We play more games together. We have been able to spend more time enjoying and appreciating the home and family we’ve built together.

I could prattle on for hours about how lucky we are to have found each other out of the millions of people out there, but I’ve probably done that more times than I can count.

Instead, I’ll just tell you that the last four years (ten, really) have been the best. And I love that this is my world.

On our honeymoon in Paris
Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

September: New beginnings and more joy on the horizon

I’ve always loved September.

When I was younger, it was because it signified the start of school. It launched football season for the lifelong cheerleader in me. As a youth cheerleader, it was also the kickoff of competition season.

September has always signified the start of fall (my favorite season), the kickoff to Halloween (you KNOW I love everything about the holiday), and every joyous thing that goes along with it.

Growing older, September became a time when I started new jobs — many of my careers launched in September, from catering to student teaching (I didn’t make it much further than that) to copywriting. It gave me the same feeling as the start of the school year. New people. New things to learn. New everything.

For me, September represents new beginnings — not spring. There’s a freshness in the air that you didn’t get any other time of the year.

I’m not even sure why we feel the need to make resolutions in January. I feel like I’m more apt to start goals in September. Good things happen in September.

Which is why it made perfect sense to tell Brian, in September of 2015, that I wanted to marry him in September. As we had already discussed getting married the following year, it meant that he didn’t have much time left to *ahem* pop the question. (And yet, he still waited until December to propose).

And why it made perfect sense to leave my corporate desk monkey job on this day three years ago.

September 8th is my day. The day I said, “I will not be miserable in a job I hate.” The day I said, “I want to surround myself with people and things I love.” The day I said, “I have dreams, and it’s time to chase every single one of them.”

So today, I am celebrating. I am celebrating me, and everything that comes in a Chrissy-sized package. I’m celebrating the accomplishments I’ve achieved over the last few years and the dreams I’ve realized as an actual reality.

I’m currently working on two (and two very different) novels right now instead of just the one I quit my job to write. Both are about halfway finished, and I can’t wait to see how they look when they’re ready. I may also have a third starting on November 1, because I like to juggle.

I am so close to finishing the Second City Music Program I can taste it (I was one class and a run of shows away from the end, and I truly hope that when this insanity is all over, I get the opportunity to finish it).

I found an improv home, and it’s minutes from my house. I started taking classes at Westside in Wheaton a little over a year ago, and just days before the pandemic shut down, I was invited to join a house team at the theater. It is one of the few standing Zoom calls I have continued since March. That team has truly kept me going through the pandemic, and I can’t thank them enough for being such a bright light in my life. If you want to help my local theater as it braves the continued shutdown, please consider donating a dollar on GoFundMe to help so that when the pandemic is over, we still have a space to perform.

I’ve taken a few jobs as background actor and had SO MUCH FUN getting paid to play pretend on some TV shows that are filmed in Chicago. One of those shows recently ended its series, and another is a brand new series about to air.

I started working on a podcast (about Disney, of course), and I’m so excited to take you on that journey. Podcasting is a lot harder than we realized it would be, but the end product is so worth the time we are putting into it.

I’m still figuring out where I want this blog to go, but I promise you this — it’s not going away. And because September is full of new beginnings, it feels like the perfect time to make a commitment to writing here. To sharing my world with you again. So if you’re already receiving my emails, I hope you’ll stay. And if you’re new, I hope you’ll sign up to receive them. Because there’s a lot coming down the pipeline, and I would love to have you be a part of my journey.

Maybe tomorrow I’ll remember that some of my dreams are on pause and the stress levels are high because *ahem* global pandemic, but today, I’m going to remember how cool it is to live a creative life.

What are you doing to live your best life, even in the midst of a pandemic?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!