Wednesday, March 25, 2015

False alarm

I think I have mentioned on here that it takes me a while to process and sort through my emotions. With that said, let me tell you a story.

So, for the last 6 months or so We have been expecting my grandma to die. I know. It sounds weird to say that. To sum up--her pacemaker battery was dying and she opted to not replace it. I understand where she's coming from. Her husband is dead and being on the caregiver side of things, she didn't want to suffer unnecessarily. Totally legit, right?

Well, after a SUPER crazy weekend, she ended up getting a new battery in her pacemaker and will be alive for another 10-15 years. :)

Pretty great, right??? I'm so happy she is okay now and is going to be around for a long time. She is really one of my best friends, and I'm glad that she's sticking around.

I am happy about life, but I am in a super weird funk right now. I think a part of it is my pent up sadness that is now no longer going to be expressed. I think a part of it is some personal crap that I am just needing to deal with and be done with, and I think a part of it is my birthday coming up.

Maybe I just need a good cry? Maybe I need to punch someone in the face? Maybe I need a RNCMO? Who knows. Haha!

Anywho--I am SUPER hungry right now. I need like a burrito or a giant ceasar salad. (Is that how you spell it???)


Thursday, March 12, 2015

What's next

There is a lot going on with me. I feel like I've been busier in the past month that I was in my 20s! Hahaha!

This is my birth month. I'm officially over the hill on the 29th. Pretty crazy, huh? Hahaha! I guess it's all downhill from here??? Maybe? I don't know honestly. I still feel REALLY young. I'm not sure if that ever goes away...but I hope it doesn't.

When I was 15--there were a lot of things that I thought I would be doing right now. Oh, small, innocent version of me. When I was 15 I thought I would be an EXTREMELY well-to-do veterinarian with my own practice and a giant ranch filled with animals. I thought I would be married and deliriously happy and in love with my husband. I was never sure about having kids, but we would have them eventually. I also first conceptualized the "808 Skate" around that age.

There are so many things I thought I would be...and honestly, I'm not sure where I'm at right now with my life dreams. Is this version of my existence what I want? I know there is more....more for me to discover and experience. I have let fear rule my life for a long time.

Fear of my own potential mostly. I might sound arrogant or cocky to some people reading this post, but I know what I am phenomenal at. I also know what I need to work on. I am amazing. I know I am amazing, but I need to figure out how to harness that and mold it into something that makes me happy and feel fulfilled.

I know what I don't want out of life. I know that I don't want to look back and feel regret or disappointment. I read an article a while ago about the top 25 regrets people have. Here it is for those who are interested. I don't regret a lot in this life, but most of my regrets have to do with love. I was watching this today, and it pretty much sums up what I am feeling right now when it comes to love:

I have a pretty amazing life...and I am so grateful for that every single day. The real question is, as Prince Derek says (admittedly a regret I am sure he carries with him) in Swan Princess, "What else is there?"

Well, that is the real question isn't it. What's next? I have no idea... but I do know that I'm done having regrets. It only took me 30 years to figure that one out. Haha.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

The best

You know what's the best?

The freaking 90s were the best. Are the best. I look back and the 90s were awesome. The music was great, the economy was awesome, the president was a cool guy that cheated on his wife and played the was good times man.

I had a great time in the 90s. I was in elementary school and middle school in the 90s. I have a lot of fond memories of that time. The toys, the TV shoes, the music. Man...The 90s were a special time.

I have nothing else to say.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Pontificate is a weird word

I have been pontificating on the meaning of my life and what I really want out of life. Like a lot. You want to know what the answer is?

I want to be happy.

That may not seem like a lot to some of you. In fact, it may seem like I am shooting below where a lot of you think I should. It's a good thing that I really don't care. Haha.

You see, it probably takes more to make me happy than most people. Not because I am impossible to please, or because I have impossibly high standards, or whatever. I don't have a specific life plan for happiness, but I know that the road to happiness takes a few things. It takes hard work. It takes humility. It takes also takes love. Let's talk about that. :)

I was born into a family that values hard work. I've been doing hard work pretty much all of my life. I am not a "delicate flower" that has never dug a trench or cut her own firewood. I know how to build a house, I know how to build a wall out of just rock so that it will stand for eons. I know what hard work is. I have my parents to thank for that. They are two of the hardest working people I know. Anything worth getting in life takes hard work and dedication. I never understood the "newer" generations complaining about having to "work" or do things they don't want to do. It's called work for a reason idiot.

I am a prideful person. I know I am. Humility is not something that has been easy for me to learn, and I'm still learning. I don't have a lot to say about humility because...well, I am super terrible at it. However, I read a quote once that says, "Pride is concerned about who is right. Humility is concerned about what is right." Or something to that effect. I try to remember that when I am being stubborn. :)

Gratitude. Gosh. One thing I have learned in life is that NOTHING is guaranteed, and everything in your life can be taken away from you...and at some point probably will be. Hitting rock bottom isn't something I would wish on my worst enemy. However, hitting rock bottom is helpful when you want to see what you are made of. It is also a good thing when you want to see who your true friends are...which leads me to the last topic in this happiness seminar.

Love. Love is a weird thing. It feels impossible to fall in love right now for me...but it also feels scarily easy at the same time. I am surrounded by some great men. Men that it would be SO easy to fall in love with. But...well...that's a conversation for another time. Romantic love is something that I'm trying not to focus on at this moment, because I'm learning to love myself. I think that learning to love YOU, no matter what you look like, what your job is...what you've done in the past...THAT is what is important. Anyone can be happy when they are with the love of their life. What about when you are alone? Can you find happiness in the quiet, lonely moments? I'm working on that for me. Love is something that can bring profound happiness to the people around you. If you just love the people around you...without reservation or is just BETTER.

Happiness! That's the goal for 2015!

Okay. I'm done. I want some peanut butter now.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

What a ride!

I'm sure you all are wondering when the playful and funny Karyn will be back to blog for you. The little mini posts are all pretty much from her. However, if you have been reading recently, you know that I am currently in therapy and working through a lot of things. A part of that for me is to blog about what I have been up to and what is significant for me in this moment.

I will try to be more playful, but there is more to me as a person than the "funny girl" or the "crazy, fun girl." This is a part of that. So yeah. My blog, my rules (as if I were structured enough to have any). This is a serious post. So, read on if you'd like. Or just stick around. I'll have something fun and breezy in a week or so.

Have you ever thought to yourself, "It would be better to feel nothing than to feel like this way another moment"?

There was a point in my life where I wanted nothing more than to just turn to stone so I didn't have to feel anything again. There was a long stretch of time where I turned to drinking to numb the pain. Numbing the pain was a "quick fix," but it never helped anything. So, I tried to pull everything in my life together and make it better. It worked for a while...until "the pit of despair" (movie reference!) opened up after a series of heartbreaks, betrayals, and just plain terribleness happened that plunged me into a mire of negativity and depression.

So, doing what felt like at the time as a smart and logical thing, I turned off my emotions...or as my friend C says, I broke my "give a damn."

Apathy is something that has been an undercurrent in my life for a long time. I never wanted to feel what I was feeling again, so I turned it all off. Some people deal with their issues by hurting themselves, or emotionally vomiting everything all at once, or not eating, or abandoning the people they love. I did something equally terrible to myself by becoming apathetic.

I can hear your collective gasp. To try to articulate what I mean in one sentence... I believe that the emotional pain we inflict upon ourselves is as much or more hurtful that any physical harm we do.

No one that is as outgoing or extroverted as myself can stand being alone for any given amount of time. I crave human connection. I need a drug. I need it to be happy. Even if it is just sitting with a friend doing absolutely nothing...that means more to me than anything.

So imagine what it was like for me to sit in a room filled with people and to not connect to or feel anything for anyone in that room. To actively choose to cut off the one thing that I actually need to be happy---human conenction.

It is so incredibly lonely, but the mental state I was in didn't let me acknowledge that as a symptom of what I was doing. It was because of the people around me. It was their fault I was feeling lonely. It was their fault I was sad. Couldn't they see past my fake smiles and laughs and see what was just beneath the surface?

Spolier alert: the answer is NO.

There is a music video that I think translates my journey. It is a bit of a controversial video. None of the people I have shown it to really got it. It is the "Elastic Heart" music video by Sia featuring Shia LeBeouf and Maddie Ziegler. (<--CLICK IT!) If you don't mind the tangent, I wanted to pontificate about it.

People only focus on the fact that a grown man is doing weird and vaguely intimate interpretive dancing with a girl in a cage. Yeah. That's what is happening in the video. However, I was never weirded out by it. The first time I watched it, I cried...for hours. You isn't two people in that cage. It's just one person. Shia and Maddie are parts of the same person.

Just like my apathy (the cage). I locked away a part of myself... the most beautiful part of myself (Shia's role). The more powerful part of myself (represented by Maddie...and the innate need I have to connect to people) wanted to just break free. But you can't be free unless you unlock all the parts of yourself.

There are so many things I love about the video, but the part that haunts me is at the very end. The girl is pulling at his arms and trying to get him to step out of the cage...there is a moment where the hopelessness of being trapped within yourself...where all the worries and sadness and heartbreak is evident on his face.

It is so raw and beautiful. I have always admired Shia as an actor, but that raw emotion...that is what true acting is. I feel like he took a note right out of my heart and played it in all it's melancholy glory. WOW. Anyway...back to the story.

It took me a long time to figure out that apathy and indifference wasn't a viable life plan. It seems like a no-brainer....and for some people I'm sure that it is. For me it wasn't that simple I guess. There was a lot going on that I didn't have the skills to cope with. I'm SO lucky that I have the most amazing friends on the planet, because they were the ones to pull me through. They stuck by me...apathy and all and showed me it was okay to open up again. That I was worth working towards being healthy and happy...that I deserved it. Some of them didn't say that in so many words, but there is something transformative that happens when people love you unconditionally.

At first I was like a feral animal. I couldn't trust anything or anyone around me. I was rebelling against any kindness or love that anyone gave me. I hurt a lot of people. I can only say (again) that I am truly sorry for the pain I inflicted.

I started working on me. Moving away from the apathy, and really FEELING what I feel. It's harder than I thought it would be, and more wonderful as well.

For a long time I was terrified of my own feelings. I tried to minimize the risk of my life by turning to apathy. As time has gone by, I've been contemplating a lot of things about where I want to end up in the future and I decided that I can have a safe, comfortable life where I would never be in fear of pain or hurt, but what is the point of a life like that?

I think it was Hunter S. Thompson that said, "Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!"

Sometimes finding yourself and bearing your soul is the only way to find what makes you happy. It's time to make risks and take chances! Mistakes will make me better...and the people that hate me in my mistakes and sins aren't worth my time. Look past your fear and face life head on!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Let's toast to 2015...or not.

"Hi, my name is Karyn and I'm an alcoholic. "

I can't tell you how terrified I was the first time I said that. I still get butterflies 10 years later. For those of you that are shocked at that confession, don't feel bad that you didn't know. No one really knew unless I told them or they saw me out drinking...which a lot of people in Kona did...

I remember the first time I took a drink. I was working late at the theater and a bunch of my friends had been pressuring me to drink with them after work. I was in a weird place emotionally. I was pretty messed up actually. I can't think of one particular instance where I made the decision to drink. It was 100 little things that built up to the decision. My first drink was sitting outside of Makalapua theaters with people I thought were my friends, sipping on a Corona.

The stupidest thing is that I didn't even like drinking in the beginning. People that LOVE beer or alcohol in general are CRAZY. It does not taste good or rather I should say it is DEF an acquired taste. Despite this fact, I didn't care. The more I drank, the better I felt... actually, the more I drank, the less I felt. Feeling less meant I felt better. And just like the decision to start drinking began with 100 little things, the path to alcoholism were little "mistakes" that built and built this dependence. A dependence on something that was illegal for me to drink, and against everything that I was raised to say no to. It started as just something I did for fun. Something I did to forget my problems...but they were all there when I was sober, only they were magnified by about 20 now because of all the issues that came with drinking.

I read an article today called, "10 Things I Don't Miss About Drinking" and I can honestly say that every one of them except the one that didn't pertain to me (hangovers...I don't know if I can actually get them) are TRUE! Drinking was a mistake that I wish I could go back and just erase. It got so bad that I would take alcohol to school and work just to get through. I was always in some form of drunkenness. I hated beer and would just have people buy me the hard stuff...and I have an alcohol tolerance that you wouldn't believe. Haha.

It all came to a head when a couple things happened. The first is that my brother and his new wife and baby moved in with us. I don't think I ever loved a baby more than I loved my nephew Keala. He was the first and I loved him so much. The second thing was that I decided to drive home drunk. It wasn't any different from any other night driving home. I was plastered (as usual) and started on my way home. Driving drunk in a town where you know all the cops and they all know you from when you were a kid is an interesting thing. I had been stopped so many times before and warned to pull it together. No one ever gave me a sobriety test or even made me get out of the car.  Anyway, back to the story--I had decided to drive home.

I should not have been on the road. I drank an entire bottle of vodka, half a bottle of tequila rose, a bottle of peach schnapps, and just for kicks 3 or 4 beers. I was buzzing, and I remember feeling buzzed, but pretty clear comparatively. I hopped in my car and started home--which was only about 10 mins away. The next thing I remember is swerving to miss a car. I spun out and the other car spun out. It was around 2 or so in the morning and no one was on the road (thankfully). I got out of my car and stumbled over to the other car to make sure they were okay. I heard the baby crying before I got all the way across the road. The mom (still don't know her name) was crying and came to meet me in the middle of the street. She saw how wasted I was and started yelling at me. Her baby was sick or something and she was on her way to the hospital. The last thing she needed was a drunk idiot killing them on the way.

I felt pathetic. Pathetic isn't even a big enough word. I felt like nothing. Worse than nothing. When did my life become this? I remember crying and saying I was sorry over and over again. I got in my car and went home. That night I decided to stop. Why did I even start in the first place? I felt so stupid. I was better than that.

Ten years. It's a long time to be done with something. Quitting drinking was one of the hardest things I've ever done. And I'm still working at it everyday. Some people think that it's just quitting and then you're finished. I wish it was like that. I may have stopped drinking cold turkey, but the addiction was still there. I still think about drinking when things get hard. For a while I used other things to take the place of my addiction...none of which were healthy or good for me. Swapping out one addiction for another is like using a different brand of cigarettes. You're still smoking, it's just a different brand. I was still an addict, I just moved through different things to be addicted to.

Addiction is so weird. It can manifest itself in so many ways. Eating too much food, not eating anything, sex, exercise, media consumption (you know, like video games, TV shows, etc) ...we can get addicted to so many things in so many ways, but the root of it is the addiction itself. It spreads its tentacles through you until it controls what you say and do. You lie and manipulate your way through life to get what your addiction is. I know I've hurt so many people with mine. I've spent the last ten years trying to pay for what I've done. I'm trying to get to a place where I feel...forgiven. Not really by any deity or person in particular. Mostly I want to forgive myself.

Who knows when that will happen. The cool thing is that I think living a life where you are trying to be the best version of yourself and trying to make up for all your faults and shortcomings isn't that bad of a life. It works for now.

Thanks for reading my story. Hopefully it can help you with whatever you happen to be dealing with. If not, I hope you still can deal with your issues with a little more grace and confidence.

Here's to 2015. It's going to be amazing...because we make it that way.