Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011: A Year In Review

I almost titled this post something different, but I figured since this is what the 2009 and 2010 recaps are named, I might as well keep the tradition going. 

This is also the first year that our family isn't spending New Year's Eve in Myrtle Beach (because New Year's Day is on a Sunday, my grandma's timeshare ended today anyway, plus everyone is still grossly sick), so I didn't have this post written ahead of time and ready to go.

2011 was the first year that I hopped on the bandwagon and chose my One Word that was my goal for the year.  My word?  Peace.  And while taking into consideration the fact that I am human and thus will be a work in progress until the day that I die, I truly believe that this year was a success.  Even when things get rough and crazy, I feel a sense of peace that I have never had until this year.

A big area that this peace has affected is my relationship with Matt.  I believe that it is because I made finding peace my goal that I was finally able to accept the truth about him and who he is in my life.  I have reached the point where I can look at him as just my best friend, not the guy I'm in love with.  He and I have come to an entirely new understanding of each other and what we both need and can expect from the amazing bond that we have.  A huge prayer that has been answered this year is that I am finally secure in us.  I no longer struggle with the enemy's taunting voice trying to convince me that he doesn't care about me or any of the horrible things I used to be so stressed about and scared of.  I know he loves me, and we are stronger than ever before. 

I think part of the reason that our relationship has become this solid is because for the first time in my entire 19 and a half years, I have other real friends that I know love me just the way that he does.  While there are several friends that apply here, Ryann and Elizabeth are the two that stick out in my head.  These two have helped to heal so much of the hurt in my past from being bullied and so much of my current hurt due to the lack of relationship with my blood sisters. 

It still honestly kind of blows my mind that my best girl friend now is a gorgeous, popular athlete - the kind of girl it's taken me till now to quit feeling so intimidated by because of my past.  I feel like I have known Ryann for my entire life, not even kidding, and we've basically only been friends for nine months.  I trust this girl with my life, with every one of my secrets.  She means so much to me.  She's the kind of friend that I can already picture being a bridesmaid at my wedding one day.  I can't wait to see how much stronger our relationship becomes in 2012.

Elizabeth is a huge role model for me.  We have very similar stories in that we both have rough relationships with our families and struggle emotionally, and she gives me more guidance than I can ever explain in this one blog post.  She is the biggest gift I received by stepping out of my comfort zone and joining my first Bible study.  I learn so much from her every day.

Some of my greatest memories of this year, however, don't involve any of these three amazing people.  They involve four people that I met on a warm February day at Campbell, and never could I have imagined what that one meeting would turn into throughout the rest of this year.  I felt a little crazy at the time working so hard to get a ride 3 hours away to see them in Charlotte in April, but thanks to Amy, another dear friend I have come to really love this year, I was able to experience my first real concert and to further a relationship with Taylor, Callie, Bruno, and Phoebe.  I got to have an even better night with them in Wilmington in June, and that was when I knew they were more than just a band I like to listen to; they're my friends.  That was definitely the best birthday present I received this year.  In between those three shows and their return to Campbell in October, these four crazy talented people came to be true friends.  They have prayed for me, prayed for my mom, and let me into their trusted inner circle.  I am honored to be a part of the dream team that helps them chase after their goals.  I can't wait to see them again, and I look forward to the crazy ride they're going to take me on in this new year.

My relationship with my family is obviously another very affected area of my life.  I have stopped trying to force relationships with people who clearly don't want relationships with me.  I have accepted the fact that I can't fix people who don't want to be fixed.  My mom and I are fine, we always have been, but I have quit making my sisters a priority when all that leads to is more tears and stress for me.  I have struggled a lot this year with wondering if I even love Chelsea at all, but in the end, I know I have to because I am a Christian and that is what Jesus commands me to do.  I have accepted the fact that even though I do love them, I just don't like them very much, and I'm okay with that.  I will never give up hope on fixing those two relationships, but for now I'm focusing on taking care of myself and what I need.  And what I need is to surround myself with people who take an interest in my life because they love me, not because they want to have ammunition to fire back at me later.

That brings me to my next (and last) point.  I feel like a completely different person now compared to who I was a year ago.  I have learned the right Someone to find my self-worth in.  I have learned how to truly love myself and love the life God has given me.  I have learned to focus on the blessings first and to be thankful for the dark times.  God has begun to answer my prayer in which I asked that He show me the reason for all the health issues I have been dealt, so much so that I now look at my story with gratitude.  I have a whole new level of confidence that has surprised me and shocked Matt.  When I saw him on Christmas and told him the end of the Nick story, he said that when he read the initial text I'd sent him at the time it all happened, he couldn't believe that I actually stood up for myself.  The me that was here a year ago never would have.  I have finally realized the necessity of taking care of myself before worrying about other people, not in a selfish way, but in a self-love way.  I finally go after what I need to do to make myself happy, instead of avoiding doing so because I'm scared it could upset someone else.  There are so many lessons God has taught me this year.  I could never list them all here.

2011 has been, without a doubt, the best year of my life.  I've said it a dozen times before - I am happier now than I have ever been.  I am grateful beyond measure to God for all the ways He has changed and shaped me this year.  I am grateful for a year of no major health problems.  I am grateful for the great memories, the unexpected blessings, and even the tough times because every single one of them has led me to where I am right now.  I wouldn't change a thing.  My prayer for 2012 is that it will be just as monumental and memorable.

I hope you all have a fantastic New Year's celebration.  Thank you for your steadfast friendship and support.  Here's to the crazy, God-breathed rollercoaster ride that awaits us in 2012.  :)

Friday, December 30, 2011


Today is the first day in two weeks that I haven't had to take a breathing treatment. It's about. darn. time.  I'm still having sinus troubles, but I can totally deal with that.  Heck, I'm congested like nine months out of the year anyway.  But my lungs are kinda crucial to, ya know, the whole living concept, so for them to be getting back to normal is a nice change.

I slept till 1:00 today.  I would've slept later, but Mom woke me up because if I didn't eat something, my blood sugar would start dropping and that would be a rough way to wake up.  I was having a pretty awesome dream, though.  I ran into four of the guys from Glee outside a Japanese restaurant we love to go to.  It was strange, but pretty awesome. :)

I spent most of the day holed up in my room, surprise surprise, because Chelsea was in fine form.  She's got laryngitis and STILL can't shut up.  Go figure.  Then Mom and I watched some football.  I've really grown to love watching this sport, which is sort of funny to me considering a few years ago I couldn't have told you the most basic information about it.

I can't believe tomorrow is New Year's Eve.  This year has been the craziest year of my life, which is really saying something considering what's been documented on this blog alone.  So many thoughts are coming tomorrow.  Stay tuned.  :)

I'm a sad Camel.

Today was nice.  Thankfully, it started off well because Mom didn't take a sweet forever to actually get up this morning.  Granted, she got up at the time she told me yesterday she wanted to leave, but that's actually good for her.  Ha!

The appointment was fine.  I only have to go see them once a year now, unless I have a new problem, because this migraine medicine is working so well.  Like I'm having them once a week, IF that, twice in a week if it's really bad.  It's pretty awesome.

Then, we went and picked up Holly.  We went to the mall to kill some time, and to pick up some shirts Mom bought for Shane as his Christmas present.  The boy has like NO nice clothes.  I bought myself a really really cute Liz Claiborne purse and a (different brand) matching wallet on sale.  The perks of going shopping the week after Christmas.

I was surprised they had orange!  It's usually pretty hard to find in accessories.  Plus Mom surprised me with a super nice phone case.

Not hard to figure out what my favorite color is, is it? ;)

Then we went to this Mexican restaurant that Holly had a coupon for.  It was pretty good.

"Cueva de Lobos"?  Means "den of wolves." Gee, I wonder why she likes it there so much.  Ha!

We stopped by a drugstore for cough drops, and then we headed over to Reynolds Coliseum for the game.  You have to get there early to get good seats.  I'd never been in Reynolds before tonight because all the basketball games have been held in the much bigger RBC Center since 1999.  These "retro games," as they call them, are a new thing, and way cheaper than regular tickets!  I was excited to get to see Reynolds, since my mom and dad spent so much time in there for games and concerts and stuff.  Here's a pic I stole off Google of the outside of Reynolds - by the time we got there, it was too dark for me to get a good picture of it.

Mom and Holly were talking ALL sorts of smack before the game, until I reminded them of the fact that Campbell has several statistics that beat those of Duke, Carolina, AND State.  That, and my "little old non-important school" in its "little old non-important conference" has a player that has gained national attention and may very well be the first Campbell basketball player drafted by the NBA.  Our basketball program is FINALLY getting really good.

It was really odd being at the game tonight and not cheering for the Wolfpack or singing during their fight song.  Haha!  First time I've ever been to a sporting event and been on the "away" team.  It was a very tight game.  At halftime, it was tied at 41.  And that's only because we got way too many fouls that gave the Pack way too many free throws.  Even Mom agreed Campbell outplayed State in the first half.  By the second half, though, the Pack remembered they had to also play defense and they ended up beating the Camels 87-81.  It was crazy close, though.  According to an article on, there were 15 ties and 12 lead changes.  That's a lot for 40 minutes of play!

Anyway, it was still fun.  Here are some pics I took of Campbell warming up, the starting line up being introduced, and the last one is of the tip-off.  They suck because you aren't allowed to use flash at all in the Coliseum, even before the game started.

I'm proud to be a Camel. :)

Quote of the day:
Me: "I don't know what sound a camel makes."
Mom: "I don't think they have a sound.  I think they just spit."

Just another reason to love my school.

Now, I have to go collapse.  I got up at 8:15, and it's almost 2:30 am.  My bed has been calling me since we pulled out of Holly's driveway.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Go ahead. Make my day.

Chelsea went to work and Blake slept in.

And when Chelsea got home, she was in a good mood and hasn't tried to start any fights at all today, which is sort of a miracle.

I was in a productive mood today (and you know how I am when I get in those), so I did four and a half loads of laundry (I say "and a half" because the first load was one Chelsea washed but never put in the dryer).  Now I have all clean clothes.  Those are kind of important, wouldn't you say?

So as you can see, I was already having a pretty great day.  In fact, I would've been perfectly happy with this alone.  Something really cool happened this afternoon, though.  It will probably seem small to you, but it's pretty much the highlight of my week thus far.  The Vespers had another podcast of their "The Reason & Rhyme Show" that they stream online nearly every Wednesday.  (I say nearly because, ya know, stuff happens, and it's sort of new still so it's not regular.)  This episode was a wrap-up of 2011 where they talked about their favorite things they experienced this year.  They announced their "Vespy Awards," which were for all sorts of random things including Best Beard, Best Host, Best Food, Favorite State (that they played in), and Fan of the Year.  I had no idea this was coming, mind you, and the first thing that was said after Bruno mentioned the Fan of the Year award was Callie saying "I'm definitely nominating Mallory Jones."  And a huge grin just broke out on my face.  As I have said before, I don't support them for the attention, but being surprised with that was just a great pick-me-up, and perfect timing after the past few days. :) I love those kids.

Tomorrow I'm off to Raleigh.  I'm so excited for the basketball game, and to tell my neurologist how great I've been doing!


Game day.  The last game for some incredible seniors.

The Belk Bowl.  Charlotte.  8:00.

The match-up?

The Wolfpack and the Louisville Cardinals.

We've never beaten the Cardinals before.  This season, both teams were "comeback kids," teams no one expected to get bowl bids based on the first half of the season, but managed to come back in the second half of the season and blow through.  So I knew it was going to be a tight game.

Louisville had ten true freshmen starting this game, six on offense and four on defense.  One of those ten?  Their quarterback.  If you don't know football, I will just tell you that that is INSANE. 

It was a ridiculous game overall.  There were a lot of sloppy mistakes on both sides, and the momentum went back and forth all the time.  Neither team was clearly crushing the other. 

But we won. :)  And what a way to end for seniors like Audie Cole

a defensive beast, an unstoppable force against extremely talented quarterbacks, and TJ Graham

who made more beautiful runs and touchdowns than I can even remember this season, without whom we would not have made it this far.

There are a few other players that must get credit for how my Wolfpack (yes, I call them mine) landed themselves first IN the Belk Bowl, and then ownership of the Belk Bowl trophy.  CJ Wilson

who, thank the Lord, has another year of eligibility, and like Graham, can run through tacklers like lightning.  And an obvious choice, our quarterback, Mike Glennon

who stepped into the seemingly-impossible-to-fill shoes left behind by Russell Wilson and subsequently proved that he can take care of the Wolfpack just fine.  Thank heavens this kid has another year to go, too, because he will only get better.

And while Mike Glennon was named Player of the Game, my kudos are going to the master of interceptions, David Amerson.

This man right here is a true sophomore.  Coming into tonight, he had a record of 11 interceptions, the highest in the entire COUNTRY right now, and tied for the 4th highest of all time.  Tonight?  He made two more interceptions, one of which was a run across almost the entire span of the field which led to a touchdown.  That's thirteen interceptions.  And in one season, too!  He didn't make any last year!  That bumped him up to tied for the second highest number of interceptions of all time.  And did I mention he's A SOPHOMORE?!?!  The first place number?  Fourteen.  I predict before his junior year is over, he'll have this record all to himself. 

I love my Wolfpack so, so very much.  It's going to be so weird going to the basketball game on Thursday and not cheering for them, but I can't betray my school. ;)

The rest of today sucked for more reasons than one, so that's why that's all this blog post is about.


Monday, December 26, 2011


Why is it that on the day after a big event or holiday or whatever, you feel like you've been drugged?

That's what today has felt like. 

It felt nice, though. 

I slept in. 

Helped Mom take care of Blake because she feels like crap.  Our whole family is sick now.  It's fantastic.

And watched all of the Glee episodes I bought over the weekend.  That was a great relaxer and pick-me-up after all the crap that went down this weekend.

On to tomorrow.  We're supposed to go out and run errands and whatnot, but I'm highly doubting that'll happen considering the way Mom's chest sounds.  (For the record, it's exactly how I sounded a week ago.  Whatever this bug is, it's long-lasting, seeing as I'm still not well, and nasty.)

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Focus on Jesus

That's what I've had to repeat to myself about six thousand times today.

Focus on Jesus.

Because frankly, today was hard.  And I am not in a good mood.  And Jesus is all I can really focus on at this point, or I'll cry.

The day started out with Chelsea yelling at me till I cried because I accidentally broke something and ended with me feeling, per usual, left out because when Holly's home Mom doesn't pay attention to anyone else.

I just don't like my family.  Does it suck?  Yes.  Do I wish I felt differently?  Yes.  But that's just how it is when I get tired of being the only one putting in effort and then being ignored.

The one thing that's kept me sane today, aside from God (the obvious), was a visit from this kid.

I can't stand being in this house.  I pray to God that I get this DC internship because I don't know if I can take twelve weeks here this summer.  I'm going crazy.  Being here makes me so depressed.  I can't wait to go back to school.

Thank you God for your mercies that are new each and every morning.  I am thankful for my best friend, Your everlasting love, and that tomorrow is a new day.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Eve

Today was exhausting.

I spent six hours helping Mom cook and clean and babysit Blake while Chelsea was at work.

Then I passed out for about an hour because I was in such pain.

Then I got up and we ate and took pictures.

And then I went to church for the first time in 5 years with Mom.  It was surprisingly way less awkward than I expected it to be.  It was good.  I needed to go.

Mood wise, today was fair.  Mom was hot and tired, I was in pain, and Chelsea was her usual self and tried her hardest to ruin everything.  Surprise surprise.

The food was fantastic, as usual, though.  Mom worked her butt off, and that was the first time I've ever been her assistant in a big meal like this.  Usually Holly is, but she and Michael overslept so they didn't get here till about an hour before dinner.

Tomorrow's going to be way better.  We're all going over to Uncle Kirk's house for our annual breakfast-for-lunch, and then I get to see Matt because I still haven't seen him.  All the big pictures will come tomorrow, but I'll go ahead and show you some of the pics Michael took of the family tonight.

And these were the best ones.  Haha!  I'm a big fan of the last one - we're doing the Wolfpack howl.  In the second to last one, Blake was howling. :D

Now, Mom's complaining I'm being unsociable, so I am off.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

The Reveal

(This is the first of two blog posts tonight.  They're about such different subjects, I want them to have their own.)

I'm going to cut right to the chase because, well, after this long, there's not much point in dancing around it any more than I already have.

Here's the deal:  That vague event I talked about last night and on the 13th?  I talked to Landon.

I haven't talked about this because I've been so embarrassed.  It seems ridiculous to be this emotionally invested in a relationship with my sister's ex-boyfriend.  When I cut off all contact back in April, I thought that would be the end of it.  I thought I could just forget him and move on, but I couldn't.  In fact, I thought about him ten times more than I did before.  Everything made me think of him.  The most random things brought back memories of what happened and how bad it hurt to "lose" him (not that he was ever really mine to lose in the first place).  There were several times that I started to send him a message, but I always deleted them because I was scared.  Scared of what I would say, what he would say, what would come of it, and whether I would lose any relationship at all with him for good.

Late late Friday night, so really early Saturday the 10th, I was talking to a dear friend of mine.  We'd sort of lost touch throughout this year, and we were talking about all the stories we needed/wanted to fill each other in on.  He came up, and by starting over from the beginning, and reliving every sordid detail, I was forced to accept the fact that cutting him out of my life was not the answer I had hoped or thought it would be.  At her encouragement, I sent him a Facebook message as an attempt to find closure I was grasping at straws for.  Well, he wrote back "no hard feelings".  I asked him if he was well, and he said yes and updated me on his schooling, and I updated him on mine.  It was all very simple, and on a neutral, non-emotional topic, so I thought I was safe.  What he wrote back next threw me for a loop.

"Still cute as hell?"

I could hardly think straight enough to respond, but I managed, trying my hardest to appear as if I was laughing it off.  But then, he didn't respond.  Because I was already emotional due to this and family drama, after a few days, I freaked out and sent him a highly-emotional message.  Then, I found out he was in the middle of finals week (duh, I'm an idiot), so things got put off for a while. 

Well, fast forward, we finally talked yesterday.  And I got all of the answers I needed.  I know him well enough to know when he's lying to me, even in text, (he's a horrible liar), so I believe him.  I told him from the beginning that all I wanted was the truth - I didn't care if it meant he had to hurt me, if he didn't care about me, I begged him to let me go. 

For once, I wasn't making it all up in my head.  He does have feelings for me.  Even though he knew from the beginning how I felt/feel, he freaked out because he's human and got nervous making himself that vulnerable, and because he sees as well as I do how complicated this is and that it's almost certainly never going to work.  I get why he was scared.  I'm scared, too.  I don't want to feel the way I feel about him.  In fact, I'd love it if I could just forget about him entirely, but I can't.  He doesn't want me out of his life, and I don't want him out of mine.  So we're friends...whatever weird form of friends you can classify us as.  The good thing is we never see each other in person, and he's not crazy or stupid enough to come over here, so I think this is where it's going to stay.

I'm just relieved it's over.  This has been eating away at me for eight months now, and it's so nice to finally get it off my chest.

Now, I suppose all I can do is pray to God to protect my heart and pray I'm not making a huge mistake.  I don't think I am, but I never know.  I'll never know if this is worth it until I give it and him a try.

It's been such a crazy day.

You know why I don't go to bed early?  Because I wake up at ungodly hours.  Like this morning.  When I woke up wide freaking awake at 4:30 am.  And I've been up ever since.

And tomorrow's Christmas Eve and my mom had all these projects to do.  And Chelsea was at work and daycare was closed which meant I also helped babysit.  And Holly and Michael are coming tomorrow.

And we had to go shopping and my hip still hurts so it was a rough experience and Mom was so tired she was ornery.

And some big things happened with that mysterious event I mentioned here that I planned to talk about tonight but am too tired to get into it now.  Maybe tomorrow.

Good night.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Big Fan

I'm a big fan of days like today.

Chelsea was at work.  Blake was at daycare.  Mom and I slept in (yay for no 5:45 am wake up!) and ran a bunch of errands.

It was just nice.  No fighting and lots of laughter. 

Funniest part of the day:  Mom went by Navy Federal Credit Union to make a payment on her credit card debt.  She drove through and sent the money up those nifty little chutes they have in the drive through area.  A teller popped up on the video screen, and she said Mom had to come inside because it had been more than 30 days since her last payment and it wasn't written in her account that she was allowed to pay in the drive through or whatever.  Mom and the teller kind of bickered back and forth for a couple minutes, and then Mom said, "How about I just drive off and leave it here?" And then she just drove off.  We could still hear the teller going, "Ma'am? Ma'am? Ma'am!" as we left.  I laughed until I cried all the way to Bed Bath & Beyond.  Part of the reason it was so funny is just the act in general (Mom said, "What are they gonna do? Call the cops and tell them I tried to pay my credit card debt?") and part of it was because it is so unlike my Mom to do something like that!

My joints are aching.  My hip popped several times in the middle of Target, something it's never done before (at least I don't think it has), and it's been bugging me ever since.  I'm hoping it will be better tomorrow.

I am so tired.  I think I'm just gonna get ready for bed.  It's not like I have anything else to do.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

First time for everything.


My ultrasound came back clear.  The hormones did what they were supposed to do.  That means I don't have to have a D&C next week.  Hallelujah for avoiding an annoying and painful procedure.

I think this is the first time in my entire life that my body has responded properly on the first try to the first medication.  It's a miracle, I tell you. 

And whoa, in the middle of writing this post, I just got a phone call from Matt.  His entire life has apparently fallen together in no time flat.  Between graduating on the 10th and today, he's found a way to move to Raleigh in a week.  That means I have WAY less time than I thought I did.  He and a friend found a $700/month, 2-bedroom, completely refurbished apartment, and the only utility they have to pay extra for is electricity.  (And yes, they've seen it in person so it's not a scam!)  He's got an $11/hour dishwashing job, seeing as there's currently a hiring freeze in NC, but his friend's mom is cosigning the lease so that if he gets a teaching job and needs to leave in July or whatever to move somewhere else to teach, no one will get hurt by a broken contract.  (I'm not totally sure how it works.  He talks super fast and this is all I could gather from what he said.  Ha!)  I'm so happy for him.  He's best when he's busy.  Chilling around Swansboro would've gotten really boring and frustrating to him really quickly.  This quick conversation was a great distraction for me tonight. :)

Tomorrow I'm going out running errands with Mom and stuff, and we've gotta leave super early because Chelsea has to be at work at 7, so I better get to bed!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

It's officially official!

I am a TFAS applicant!  Mom faxed in the two pieces they needed today which means they finally started processing my application!  Yay yay yay yay yay.

Also official?  I am definitely sick.  I woke up last week with my chest tight, but I just thought it was the weather getting colder.  I wasn't wheezing so I just dealt with it.  Day by day the wheezing has gotten worse, phlegm in my chest arrived, and the terribly painful pleurisy pain came back for a visit.  Thank the good Lord above that this house is full of people whose immune systems suck so bad that we keep Prednisone on hand at all times.

Lastly, I agreed today to speak at my church on January 4th at their Wednesday night "Prayer and Praise" service about my story and what I've learned about God from it and that kind of thing.  The same church that essentially ostracized me 5 years ago.  I'm already nervous.  Haha!  This is my first public speaking experience, and I'm such a perfectionist about stuff like this.  As long as I keep my nerves under control, I'll be fine.  I just reeally felt like God was telling me to do this, just like He was telling me to volunteer to speak at CUW.  And this will be a WAY smaller crowd that the 900+ people that will be at CUW!  So yeah, this is a big step forward for me.  I'm almost certain I'd never have agreed to this a year ago.

I'm tired and my neck hurts, so this is all for tonight.  Onward to tomorrow, where I will get my ultrasound results.  I'm at peace with it all, so that's nice.

This cracks me up.

And the guy actually sounds kind of like him!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Problem Solved

I know that I don't know this woman at the head of the TFAS Financial Aid Department, but I'm a big, big fan of hers.  Mom said she was super understanding when she explained to her all of the details that I mentioned in yesterday's post, and she had a simple solution.  Dana (the woman) said just fax in my 2010 Social Security Benefit Statement, Mom's 2010 W2 (if you pay taxes, you know what that is. I don't.), and a short letter explaining why I couldn't send in what they requested.  We already had the statement and the W2 at hand because we organized all of the stuff last night, and the letter took like fifteen minutes.  Simple enough.  And Mom can send it using the fax machine at her school. :) 

I am SO RELIEVED that this is (finally!) taken care of.  Now I don't have to worry about anymore, and just wait with anticipation for the response that lets me know if I've been accepted or rejected. Cross your fingers!

I might as well go ahead and explain what this internship is all about.  I don't have anything else to blog about tonight!

The group that it is through is called The Fund for American Studies.  It is an international organization, but they are headquartered in Washington DC.  There are several different "institutes" (as they call them) that focus on different areas in Government, Economics, Business, Journalism, and Law (I think that's all).  Because I am an International Relations major, I applied to the IEIA: Institute on Economics and International Affairs.

The 2012 summer program runs from June 10 to August 4.  (That means I wouldn't even be home for my birthday! WHOA.)  Students in this program live in apartments on the Georgetown campus.  There are two parts to the program. 

The first is taking two classes at Georgetown that will be transferred back to Campbell for 6 hours of undergrad credit.  (Two less classes I have to fit into the next five semesters? Yes please!)  I can't remember the specific names of the classes I would (will???) be taking, but I do remember one is Economics and the other is International Government (or Politics or whatever, I don't feel like trying to find it on the website). 

The second is a 30-hours-a-week internship on Capitol Hill.  TFAS picks out where you intern, but they try and match it as closely to your institute/major as possible.  My DREAM choice is to intern in an embassy, and that is a possibility, so we'll see! 

Plus, there's all sorts of fancy meetings with really important people and fun activities.

It's pretty perfect.  For someone who wants to go to Georgetown for grad school, and who needs to be in DC to get started in her field, there's not really much else you could ask out of a student internship. :)

Have I made it clear that I want this so so so very much?!?!?!  Because I do.  I really do.  It's rolling admissions, so I should find out by the middle of January.  What would be awesome is if I found out before I leave for school January 8th, but considering how late it is, I'm not getting my hopes up. 

Rule of Life #1201835

If you wait until the last minute for something, complications will arise. The severity of the complications is inversely proportionate to the flexibility available in the task at hand.

So I've mentioned this DC internship I've been working towards.  I got the online application sent in on December 2nd, but then I found out all of these extra things I needed to get sent in: my transcript, a summary of my financial aid from Campbell, a letter of recommendation, and either my FAFSA form or a parent's tax return.  The first three were easy to do and were taken care of within a week.  The last one, however?  Not so much.

See, I didn't apply for FAFSA (I know! That's uncommon for someone as poor as me, but since I have Uncle Ed and my Campbell-given scholarship,  I didn't see the point in taking money away from someone else.), so that wasn't an option.  That means I had to get a parent's tax return that listed me as a dependent.  I didn't even bother with it until I got home for break, knowing Mom would never remember or have the time to find it on her own. 

Due to work and a zillion other things, she put it off till this weekend.  Meanwhile. I was getting phone calls and emails from the Financial Aid department of the group running the program, saying that if I didn't get this tax return in by the 21st, I would lose the 5% discount and the priority scholarship consideration.  And even if it was after the 21st, they still wouldn't even process my application until they got it.  So we had to do it.

Because people moved in and out of this house, and furniture was moved in and out, and then when I was in the hospital and people came over to help, etc., things got moved.  She said all the paperwork and stuff we needed would be in her closet and the garage.  We had to find recent years, too.  Why?  Because a) that's what they asked for, and b) when I received Social Security because of my dad dying, she was legally not allowed to list me as a dependent.  I thought that my Social Security ended when I graduated high school in June of '09.  Turns out, it actually didn't end until I turned 18 in June of '10. 

I didn't find this out until today.  That means I am not listed as her dependent on her 2009 or 2010 (or any year before) tax records.  The application online says the tax return has to list me as a dependent.  So no FAFSA, no eligible tax return, and I'm supposed to get something faxed to them tomorrow.


Well, on the upside, my mom and I didn't have to stay up half the night searching through boxes and boxes of mail and paperwork to find things.  But then I started to panic about how I was going to look bad, or apathetic, or lazy to these people if they didn't receive this tomorrow when I promised them they would.  Mom to the rescue!  I know it's sort of childish considering I'm 19 years old, but tomorrow, Mom is calling the lady I've been talking to (the head of the Financial Aid department) and explaining to her that I didn't apply for FAFSA, and none of her tax returns list me as a dependent because of the Social Security.  Part of the reason is I'm a chicken and nervous about having to tell her I couldn't send something like I said I would, and part of it is because I feel like hearing it from her would sort of be verification to the people that I wasn't trying to cheat the system or not follow the necessary instructions or anything. 

I really, really, really want this internship.  And I certainly don't want a stupid piece of paper to destroy my chance at getting it.  This lady has seemed friendly and understanding the few times I've talked to her, so I really hope and pray that she is the same with Mom.

And that reminds me, I still haven't told y'all what this internship is about! I'll get on that ASAP.

Now, it's late.  I've spent basically this entire weekend either babysitting or helping Mom in some fashion, so I am exhausted.  Good night.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Better, but still not right.

I think she actually took her medication today.  She was nice, like most normal human beings are when the chemicals in their brains aren't all whacked out.

That's nice.  To have one day where I actually feel relaxed after several consecutive days of hell that made me feel like one giant ball of nerves is nice.

But it doesn't make everything okay.  It doesn't erase hearing "If I could kill you and get away with it, I would."  It doesn't erase feeling constantly beaten down just for merely existing.  It doesn't fix the damage that's been building for the past twelve and a half years.

It won't be fixed until I actually believe she's sorry.  Until she takes responsibility for the havoc she's caused and quits blaming it on everyone else.  Until she starts showing real signs that she's changing, or at least actually trying to.

I don't hate her.  I can't hate anyone.  I just...don't feel anything.  I'm numb, and I'm fairly certain I've never felt this way about anyone or anything before.  As a friend, probably my best friend in this crazy wonderful blog world put it, "The only coping mechanism I have left is to pray every moment I'm in [her] presence to shield myself from the overwhelming darkness [s]he brings out."

And some advice from another dear "real life" (and I hate calling it that because this blog world is just as much real life as my life at school or home) friend that's really stuck with me: "And as for love, you're supposed to love everyone because Jesus wants you to, but you don't have to love anyone just because you share some chromosomes."  That validates my feelings, which is a rare occurrence in my world.

What I'm praying for tonight is strength.

22 days.