reflections: pt. 2

“An intention will help create more clarity in your life, especially when the seed is planted right before you start your meditation. Setting an intention is like drawing a map of where you wish to go — it becomes the driving force of your higher consciousness” 

Source: “10 Intentions to Set for Your Most Authentic Life” by Chandresh Bhardwaj

A little over three years ago, I wrote down some intentions on the eve of a strawberry moon. Without going into too much detail, these intentions included goals for my career, my family, my home, my love life, and my general well-being. I filled up an entire sheet of paper, folded it up, and tucked it away in my sock drawer.

By the next month, I started my new job and got one huge item checked off the list. It seemed like after that, good or bad, everything started to fall into place – even if I couldn’t see it as it was happening. I pulled the note out once, maybe twice over the course of the next year, but in all honestly I completely forgot about it in that sock drawer until about a week ago.

As I read over that list, three years later, I was either at or far beyond every goal and intention I outlined for myself. And it was a really good feeling… but it was also a little defeating. Was that it? Where do I go from here? I know I probably should have kept this piece of paper for its sentimental value or whatever, but in that moment – when the realization hit me – I knew there was only one thing left to do.

So, I ripped it up into tiny little pieces and threw it in the trash.

The lesson I learned through this experience is to never stop striving. Never stop setting intentions and goals for yourself. Write it down. Check back in on it periodically. Achieve it. And once you check everything off your list, rip it up and set higher ones. [Okay, ripping it up might be a little over dramatic, but you know who you’re dealing with here.] Either way, always remember that you are so, so capable of so much more than you think you are. Never stop learning. Never stop growing. And never, ever settle.

That’s all I got for now.

What a difference six years can make

“Happy New Year!!” She exclaims, 45 days into 2018. What can I say. I guess I’ve been busy *shrugs*

The roller coaster that was 2017 ended on an extremely high note, and I’m hopeful for what 2018 has in store. My goal, at least during this tax season, is to use some of my tax return on the purchase of a functioning laptop so I don’t have to sneak around on my free time at work to post something. Let’s be honest, my first drafts usually start on my phone anyway *shrugs again*

So, if you use Facebook at all, you know there is an “On This Day” tab where you can see your Facebook activity on that same day, years in the past. For someone who is an avid Facebook user, this can either be full of really fond memories you can share, or it can be a really cruel page filled with things you’d rather forget. If you’re like me (i.e. never post anything on Facebook and use it purely to creep), this section is usually barren and/or filled with cryptic statuses and song lyrics from a decade ago when you thought people actually cared.

Yesterday being Valentine’s Day and all, I got this (kinda sick?) idea to check out my Facebook memories On *This* particular Day.

Spoiler alert, there wasn’t much there. I guess I never had any exciting Valentine’s Days via Facebook? Entirely for the best, I’m sure. However, there was one post I made on this day, six years ago, that I’ve been thinking about ever since I stumbled back upon it. It read, “Always want what you can’t have. Never what you can.


Now on V-Day 2012, I am pretty sure I was single. This was after my high school boyfriend, but before the post-college one (yes, my former suitors have now been generalized into these two very broad groups). I’m not sure how my 21-year-old self would have interpreted this statement, since I don’t even remember posting it or what prompted me to do so at 11:40 PM on Valentine’s Day; but I know how my 27-year-old self understands this statement today.

There are a lot of things we say we want, that we can have if we were motivated enough. You say you want a nice body, but you’re not willing to discipline yourself in the kitchen and at the gym to achieve one. You say you want a quality significant other, but you push all the good ones away in favor of the assholes. You say you want that nice car, but you’re not willing to stop spending all your money at the mall or the bar to save up for one. Most of what we say we want can be 100% attainable if we just shifted our priorities. Most people would rather just be unhappy and complain, rather than go out and get it. [Side note for all of you thinking, “but I want this person who doesn’t want me???” let me present you with this mind-blowing thought… if they don’t want you, then trust me, you don’t want them either!]

The truth in what we really want lie in the things we’re willing to sacrifice to get it. If you’re not willing to make the sacrifices, then you probably didn’t want it as bad as you think you did.

The only “wants” I hope to have in life are the unattainable… (likeeeee the ability to teleport, for instance) because everything else I’ve already wanted I’ve surrounded myself with.

Maybe I am over simplifying this. I’ve been told Scorpios are very black-and-white.

Endless likes

No matter what social media platform it is,
You can never run out of “likes” to give.
The limit does not exist.
It’s like that in real life, too.

If you like what someone is wearing,
Tell them.
If you think someone’s new haircut really brings out their eyes,
Tell them.

If you are thinking something nice about someone —
Anything nice about someone,
Always, always, always
Just tell them.

We can start a movement
By hitting the “like” button
In person too.

sun is shining, the weather is sweet

It’s June and it’s finally starting to feel like summer in Cleveland.
And here too is your friendly reminder
to lighten the fuck up.
No really, just relax.
Be kind.
Say hi to strangers.
Compliment people. Genuinely.
Watch the sun rise.
Let that idiot in the Subaru in your lane.
Tell people to have a nice day — and sincerely mean it.

For most of my life, I’ve always had this approachable aura about me. No really — in a crowd full of people, I swear I am always the one strangers are drawn to. At the gym, at the grocery store, even at the office. I’m always the one who gets asked directions. People always try to make small talk with me in the elevator. Things like that. I think I just have one of those faces that people know they can trust. Or something like that.

So what did this cruel, bleak, Cleveland winter do to me? It hardened me. It depressed my spirit. It made me snippy with people — even ones I like! It made me feel like if I could just master the RBF [resting bitch face] and look unapproachable, people will stop trying to engage with me. Surprise: it didn’t work. It just made me crankier when those people inevitably did try and engage with me. What an unfortunate way to go about your every day. 

Cue summer vibes: right on time. It wasn’t a conscious decision I made, hell, I didn’t even realize how negative I really had been until I started writing this. But something in me switched. It started with small talk in the copy room at work, with that lady that always traps you in conversation when you’re only half listening. I had a nice, quick conversation with her then I walked away. Then it carried onto the road. I am a petty, passive aggressive driver when I want to be (read: all the time). In the last few days I have been leaving earlier so as to not be in any rush, and letting the crazy people do their own crazy thing behind their own wheel. I realized there is no use in getting myself in a mess or all worked up just because the turd in the BMW wants to cut me off. Something so simple, yet it felt so freeing. New people in my class at the gym? Instead of judging them and/or silently scathing them for being in my personal space… Oh, here you go–you just need a light set of weights, a heavy set, and a mat. No, you don’t want to get that close to me, we move around a lot. You’re doing great!

Life is so much easier (and less stressful !!!) when you are nicer. Nicer to other people, and nicer to yourself. It’s okay to relax. Things will work out. It’s easy to say and to practice when the sun is out and everything is green and beautiful. I just hope this feeling of positivity carries with me throughout all seasons.

“If you want to lift yourself up,
Lift someone else up.”

Dinner talk

A few months back the boyf and I decided to have an impromptu date night. Cleveland Chop it was, due to the fact that a) their happy hour is absolutely amazing, and b) I had a craving for a good steak that wasn’t going to hurt his wallet too badly. Highly recommend this place for brunch too, btw.

So, I place an order for my 8 oz filet and the boyfriend tells me we just have to order these steak “cigars” as an app. Okay, I’m into it. They come out, all deep-fried and delicious looking, and when I asked if they were too hot to eat yet, his response kind of took me by surprise…

“Just don’t ruin your dinner by burning the roof of your mouth on the appetizer.”

I mean, it’s a simple enough statement. Not waiting for that delicious cheese oozing out of a deep fried steak-um to cool off before shoving it in your mouth would definitely, completely ruin a good steak dinner. And probably a handful of dinners after that. The appetizer was good, but being too eager to try it may result in regret. It really didn’t hit me until well after the fact, but, in giving this simple warning, he inadvertently provided a very interesting perspective on life.

I think oftentimes we tend get too caught up in the moment. We are so trained to live in this instant gratification existence, that we don’t really consider how a split second decision could have lasting effects on us and those around us. Whether it’s in a relationship, through social media, or otherwise; sometimes we just get too impatient, too impulsive. We burn our mouths before the main course comes out.

Let this unexpected dinner talk be a lesson to everyone, to take a moment. Your course in this life is largely determined by a string of small, seemingly inconsequential decisions. You can always benefit from letting the damn food cool off first.

The politics of fasting

If I’ve learned anything in my 26 short years on this planet, it’s that there is usually a logical reason behind every decision made. Even if you personally do not see it. Even when it comes to religion, which — growing up as a Catholic — did not always make much sense to me. And Catholics always have so many dang rules.

Lenten season is upon us. It is a time for us to reflect on the death and resurrection of Jesus, who fasted for the 40 days and 40 nights leading up to his death. As early as the first century, Catholics wrote of fasting to commemorate this great sacrifice.

Fasting started with bread, and then evolved to worshipers avoiding meat, eggs, and dairy. By the 13th century, it was widely understood that abstaining from meat only went as far as avoiding warm-blooded, land-locked animals. It did not include cold-blooded animals, such as fish (and would actually include snakes, alligators, and other reptiles, too). So now we have an answer to the popular question, “How is fish not considered meat?” when it’s allowed on Fridays during Lent. Warm-blooded animals were thought to be too delicious… they were believed to be an aphrodisiac, and largely considered a luxury in the 1200s. Catholics needed to remember the sacrifices Jesus made for us by eating food that didn’t taste good. It was said to be a lesson in modesty.

While many Catholics accept the origins of fasting for what it is — ingrained in their tradition; a sacrifice worshippers make, that started shortly after Jesus’ death — others believe history went a just little differently. The conspiracy theory goes as follows: a medieval pope made a secret pact with his fisherman crew to boost the sales in the fishing industry. Though widely popular, this story has never actually been verified.

Regardless of any secret pact that may or may not have been made, for centuries now, many associate holy holidays with fish. The amount of meatless days surpassed just Fridays and went on to include Wednesdays, Saturdays, Advent and Lent, and other sacred days (any Italians ever heard of the Feast of the Seven Fishes?). The fish industry was booming, and fasting days became “central to the growth of the global fishing industry.


It was the 16th century in England when shit got political.

You all know the story of Henry VIII — he began his reign in 1509, and was married to Catherine of Aragon. He was madly in love with Anne Boleyn and wished to be with her instead. Much to Henry’s dismay, the Pope refused to annul his marriage to Catherine because Catholics didn’t divorce. This prompted Henry to break off from the Roman Catholic Church and start the Church of England, where he could divorce ol’ Catherine and marry his beloved Anne.


At this time, fish dominated the menu for a good part of the year. But when Henry left to start his own thing, eating fish became political — and thus, abstaining from it was an act of defiance, demonstrating solidarity with the Church of England. When you have an economy that has been so dependent on fishing for such a long time, and all of a sudden people refuse to eat fish… well, it becomes a problem. As a result, Henry’s son, Edward, VI, succeeded his father in 1547 and reinstated days of fasting to boost local fishing businesses.

As recent as the 1960s, fish prices were largely tied to the Catholic church’s stance on how strict they wanted to enforce fasting rules. Whether or not eating meat on Fridays will get you a first row ticket to Hell… well… that remains a mystery.


In other news, this Lenten season I decided to give up the same thing I do every year: absolutely nothing. Because honestly, what even is the point anymore?

Then, yesterday — the day after Ash Wednesday — I treated someone whom I deal with on a daily basis very poorly. Partly because they said something rude to me at the beginning of my day, and partly because I’d been fed up with some of their actions for a while now. Later that night, I realized that yesterday was the anniversary of this same person losing a close family member.

And that’s when I decided this year I am going to do better. This year, I will treat every person who is mean or rude to me like they are going through something I don’t know about or wouldn’t understand. I will combat their meanness with kindness, every chance I get.

This year I will be a better me.

12 things that have happened since the Browns’ last win

“That’s Cllllllllllleveland — with 12 L’s — to you.”

Welp. The Browns are 0-12. If you’ve followed them at all these last few seasons decades, this may not come as that great a shock to you. But it is actually really hard to be this bad.

Historically, the Browns have been garbage. That’s just a fact. But every season — though they may be historically losing seasons — there comes a game or two where we should not have won, against a team we should not have beat, but for some reason we pull it out by the skin of our teeth. Going winless is not the norm, even for terrible teams. This year is different. Twelve weeks into the season and it is abundantly clear that we can’t win at all, especially after being outscored 174-67 in the second half so far this season. Is it possible we will go 0-16?

Since 1944, only four teams have gone winless in the NFL for an entire season: the 1960 Dallas Cowboys (0–11–1), the 1976 Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0–14), the 1982 Baltimore Colts (0–8–1), and most recently, the 2008 Detroit Lions (0–16). So the Browns will be in some good company, if you could call it that.

I’d like to take this time to take everyone back to the last time we rejoiced in a win…

The day was December 13, 2015. Our starting quarterback was none other than Mr. Johnny Football. Our opponent: the San Francisco 49ers (who, might I add, are currently an unimpressive 1-10 after week 12). Seems like forever ago, doesn’t it? Here’s 12 things that have happened in the world since the Browns’ last W…

1. Leonardo DiCaprio finally won the Oscar he always deserved.

2. This video, for some reason (unknown to me), became a thing:

3. Pokémon Go happened and I started getting random texts like this:


4. Zika.

5. Ryan Lochte told everyone he was robbed at gunpoint at the Rio Olympics, really he is just drunk and rachet. Rio was not happy.

6. Brangelina divorce, making love questionable for couples everywhere.

7. This lady couldn’t stop laughing over a Chewbacca mask:

8. Brexit.

9. Everyone’s favorite silver-back gorilla, Harambe, was taken far before his time. Reassuringly, at least one person out there writes him in for president (it was probably Biden).


10. Donald Trump becomes president after what seemed like the most painful election in modern history.

11. Cavs win the first franchise championship — this one still brings a tear to my eye.


12. Indians actually go to the World Series and ironically blow a 3-1 lead (I ain’t mad at ya, boys).

And there you have it. A world that keeps truckin’ along, despite the Browns. Well. As they say, I guess there’s always next year… Until then… Thankfully next week is a bye-week.


Maybe we should just be single for a few years and find ourselves

I’ve never been one to get very political.

I think our system is largely predetermined and that democracy is just a meaningless word anymore, told to us to make us feel like we have control, when really we don’t. And, even if I’m incorrect in that assumption, I believe there are systems so well in place that our country can withstand a so-called bad president regardless.

That being said, on the eve of one of the most ridiculous presidential elections in history, there are some things to consider:

1. Being a woman in the business professional world, I’ve been in the presence of many-a narcissistic businessmen for most of my adult life, and one thing is consistent: they will always try to manipulate you. To the point where you think you are making the “right” decision, but in reality it’s a decision that benefits them. I’ve never met a money-driven CEO that was willing to put other’s needs in front of his own personal interests. But he damn sure will make you think he is.

That’s why I don’t think a businessman would make a good president.

2. I also know that there are things that go on in the White House that would make the general public shit its pants if we knew. There are secrets in those walls, and corruption beyond your comprehension. You’re foolish or just plain ignorant if you think otherwise. So think about someone who has been a part of that corrupt system for 30+ years. And while there are a lot of politicians out there that are able to remain innocent and ethical in the public’s eyes during their tenure, I don’t know if I trust someone in the White House who already knows how to rig the system in her favor.

That’s why I don’t think a former president’s wife and — let’s just call a spade a spade — a blatantly corrupt politician would make a good president.

So, basically, what I’m trying to say is, we’re fucked either way. Until our country can stray from this two-party system that has been so ingrained in our political tradition, we’re fucked no matter who wins.

But also, I view the presidency the same as I view the stock market: it has its ups and downs, but eventually it all evens out in the end. So yeah, we’re fucked in the short term… but we’ll probably be fine either way.

At least that’s what they want you to think.



I think there’s a bug in my wine

Sometimes, when I open a brand new bottle of shampoo, I am so assured that there is more than enough to go around in that bottle; I have no problem using a generous amount all at once. I’ll squeeze an unnecessary glob of it into my hands; give myself one of those shampoo mohawks like Emma Stone did in Easy A. But, when that bottle of shampoo has an ounce or two left in it, a switch flips in my brain. Once the switch is flipped, you better believe I will use the tiniest amount ever and try and make those last drops last as long as humanly possible. Isn’t it weird how we do that?

Why do we do that? Why use something so copiously to start when in the back of our minds we know there is a finite amount of it? And then all of a sudden know exactly how to conserve it when there is barely any left? How else do we practice this sick habit within our own lives? Friendships, family, relationships…? FOOD AND VARIOUS NETFLIX SERIES?! It is only when our shampoo is down to its final droplets that we realize we may have been taking advantage of it up until this point.

Maybe it’s just me. To be honest I’ve had some wine tonight. But you can’t tell me that’s not fucked up how humans are naturally inclined toward that line of thinking.

I don’t want to know if that was a piece of cork or a bug in my wine.