Thursday, March 6, 2014

Survivor: The Piranha Pool

So, the phrase, 'dog eat dog world,' I never really understood it until the harsh reality of being an adult hit me in the gut. Granted, I'm a young adult, so young, in fact, that I still have 'teen' in my age. But, despite that, I like to think that I know a few things.

One such thing that I know? Survivor SUCKS.

Ever seen that show? A bunch of 'random' folks end up in some dramatic situation and have to, well, survive in order to win the...hundred buck prize or a poster or something. While we watch from our comfy sofas in our fat pants, that just so happen to have some Cheeto powder on them in the shape of smeary fingerprints, we watch these people perform tasks, fight to win, make alliances, stab in the back and chalk it up to entertainment.

Wait, is Survivor still airing? I dunno.

Well, in any case, it USED to be something a lot of people loved to watch. But it's not so fun to live, especially in every day life.

Forming friendships in a scary place doesn't always mean good things. If you're thrown into the deep end of the Piranha pool and told to get to swimmin', you're bound to get hurt in a big way. You find ways to adapt, but you learn the hard way that none of those goldfish with teeth can be trusted.

What happens at that point? Well, when you 'adapt,' you either start growing gills and filing teeth or you pray to God you can get out with all your favorite appendages.

I feel as if I've managed to get my way to the edge, find a comfortable little bubble that allows me to interact and go about my business somewhat merrily. Unfortunately, something I didn't seem to understand the first time around, PIRANHAS HAVE SHARP FREAKING TEETH. A comfort bubble doesn't stand a chance. Why does the beastly fish feel the need to attack? To preserve itself. You're a threat, even when they trust you and it goes the other way for you as well. They're a threat, even when not immediately so.

Survival of the fittest isn't as entertaining when you realize how much it applies to so many facets in life. While my personal life has been returning to it's happy and comfortable place, there are other aspects of my life that I find are having surprising stresses and upsets. I don't like not knowing where I stand. I don't like not knowing who I can trust because it seems that people keep giving me reasons to stop opening my mouth to anyone that isn't me. I can't sell myself out, I can't misinterpret my own thoughts. I can trust myself, usually.

Anyway, I guess this post is mainly to say that, as much as it sucks sometimes, be true to yourself and don't be afraid of loyalty.

Being loyal doesn't make you a bad person or any less of a fantastic folk. Sometimes it might not always be positive or popular, it's scary and sometimes hard, but when you find a way to survive in this crazy game without losing yourself and turning into a monster, hold onto it tight.

I'm still struggling to see where I stand and what exactly my place is but when I know, I hope that I'll have to personal strength to be the person I want to be.

Try to inspire people to be better in all places.

You never know who is watching.

If you do your best, you'll find that there is always something better than the worst thing you've encountered. Keep striving to find that 'better.' Don't give up, you never know how close you are if you stop searching.

Also, it's okay to be careful who you trust. Don't spill your soul to everyone who will listen. Wait to find the ones that aren't just looking for dirt to get you voted off the island.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Getting back on the horse called Life

Alright, well, here goes. The past few months, a lot has gone on. A lot has been decided on, whether it be a decision I made or one that someone else made involving me, but in any case, many things have popped up in my life and then disappeared. I'm now 19 years old and, although I used to know, I'm on the path of finding myself again.

For a long while, a lot of who I was just fell dormant. I'm not sure how it happened but one day, I found that I didn't want to bother writing anymore. I didn't want to challenge myself to put to paper the words that are already in my head, even though they've been there for years. I found that I didn't want to read anything that took longer than five minutes. All I wanted to do in my free time was numb my mind with Netflix. I still had a testimony of my faith but it was faint.

It got a burst when I received my Patriarchal blessing but then, in time, that spiritual lift left as well. I went to church, I tried to pay tithing whenever I had money, I went to mutual, I finished my Personal Progress and I always did whatever I was asked in the church. I gave talks in church to the congregation, I teach my little children how to develop their own testimonies yet I was numb. I believed, I knew it was all true but I had no real burning desire to grow or advance my knowledge.

 In other words, the Kayelee that was grew into a Kayelee that didn't have passion about anything in any real sense.

 I wasn't content to live my life doing nothing but I didn't have a whole lot of drive to follow through with anything. I graduated high school and, while I wanted to get to college, I didn't have any drive to pursue. I wanted a job because I like working, I like making my own money and paying my bills but I had no desire to REALLY find a job most of the time.

 I allowed myself to get discouraged in many ways.

 Now, my life was never all darkness and gloom. I have a family that loves me entirely and I adore them even when they might not know it. I have a few friends that have made it clear they love me and want to see me happy.

I have a loving church family that wants nothing more than to see me succeed after they watched me grow up. I had all these wonderful supports that I NEVER UTILIZED.

 I mentioned earlier about not being content, but at the same time, I was content. I kind of assumed that my life would be kickstarted soon enough when specific events began to play out. Well, that's not nearly good enough. So, what exactly was wrong with my life?

  1. I had no job
 2. I had no drive to go to school to prepare for a CAREER 
3. I spent far too long waiting on someone who had no desire to see me grow in any regard, someone who had no desire to better themselves or encourage me to do so. 
4. I took my easy life for granted. 
5. I gave up my hobbies, my passions. 
6. I let my morals relax just enough 
7. I had beliefs but I had no VALUE of my beliefs, even though I knew exactly what my beliefs had done for me in the past. 
8. I had no faith in humanity. (Well, I still don't, really, but have you SEEN humanity lately?) 
9. I had no faith in myself, in who I was and wanted to be.

 A few weeks before Christmas 2013, I got a call that I was excited to get but I also dreaded a little bit.

The manager at my local PetSmart got my job application and passed it along to another manager in his store. She wanted to hire me. In less than a week, I was employed.

It was fast and shocking and wonderful. I was told I was going to be a bather in the grooming salon. Not what I had applied for, but I was grateful to have a job opportunity. A part-time job opportunity, but a job opportunity anyway.

 I learned quickly that most of the people I'd come to work with regularly were people I, for the most part, was happy to associate with. Most of us don't share any of the same values, but many of them treated me kindly, taught me and I found a lot of respect for them.

 Unfortunately, I had absolutely no experience in this field. None at all, besides being a pet owner, I had never even thought of working with animals. So, the first few weeks were incredibly difficult. I often wondered if I'd be able to continue or if I just needed to settle and apply for a job I considered easy in comparison, a job I knew I didn't want.

 I still struggle, some days are horrifying but others, most of the time, are extremely pleasant, filled with laughter, doggy kisses, and a whole lot of water, not to mention the toenail trimmings.

But I've come to the point where, while I know this is not my last stop on my career train, I don't despise my work. I'm still grateful for the job, the opportunities, and the skills I've been learning. I don't contemplate applying to everywhere on the planet to escape my workplace. I find that I do enjoy my job even if I'm less fond of the drama that comes with working in small spaces with ten people.

 Recently, I had the pleasure to train in another bather. She's a very sweet girl, I'm glad to consider her a friend even though we've known each other for a few weeks only. The funny thing was, and I don't know if she'll ever know this, but knowing her has helped my testimony and my actions.

When I would get frustrated at work, it was far too easy for me to slip up and behave in a way that I didn't want to. I wanted to stand out, even if it was for being innocent and 'uncorrupted' but how could I want to teach these people, my coworkers, that this was how I was and how I wanted to be seen if I didn't show it all the time?

If I didn't set an example and live my beliefs, how could I go about trying to live my life those ways everywhere but work?

 If my PROFESSIONAL persona wasn't up to snuff with how I was at home, was it worth having a persona at all? I never wanted to be one that bent the rules to fit in or compromised what I knew to be right so I didn't stand out.

 When my new bather came in, I noticed that she had a softer demeanor, she spoke carefully, she was pleasant, and she wasn't afraid to talk of God in her life.

I was amazed.

I knew I wanted to be better and I had started on that path, but I didn't realize how much I needed someone to MAKE me WANT to be a better example. My managers expected professionalism around customers, but when it was the groomers alone, it was like chatting with bar buddies.

Don't get me wrong, I love the relaxed atmosphere but I had no one that encouraged me to better until this girl came in. Come to find out, this girl was raised in the same religion I was.

She had the same knowledge of the same values. She's got her own struggles right now but most of her issues come from hypocrisy within the religion.


 Not only do I have a girl who's got a sweet, nice nature that inspires me to be better, but now, I want to show her that it's very possible to have a happy life within the church and to help inspire her faith again. How can I sing the virtues of the church if I WON'T ACT LIKE I BELIEVE IN THEM?

 Since knowing her, since deciding to be a good example for, not only her, but everyone I meet, I have found the love for my faith. The gratitude for my knowledge, the strength of my testimony,all because my Heavenly Father sent someone to me to HELP ME while allowing me to help her.

 So, in a matter of weeks, I had a job that I valued, that allowed me to handle my responsibilities, as well as the ability to firm my own foundation in my core beliefs that I am building for my life.

  1. I had no job 
2. I had no drive to go to school to prepare for a CAREER 
3. I spent far too long waiting on someone who had no desire to see me grow in any regard, someone who had no desire to better themselves or encourage me to do so. 
4. I took my easy life for granted. 
5. I gave up my hobbies, my passions. 
6. I let my morals relax just enough 
7. I had beliefs but I had no VALUE of my beliefs, even though I knew exactly what my beliefs had done for me in the past. 
8. I had no faith in humanity.  
9. I had no faith in myself, in who I was and wanted to be.

 Suddenly, I could find that in my spare time, I was becoming CONTENT and HAPPY.

 It's funny, when you have some sort of proof that life is beginning to change for the better, you have a stronger desire to sort out the rest.

 Unfortunately, sometimes, they get sorted in ways that we don't expect or want.

 Shortly after the beginning of the year, as I was settling into my job and beginning to get my life started, a shocking upset sunk my heart straight to my feet.

The person I thought I could spend the rest of my life with decided that he had no interest in any of it anymore.

At this point, I don't know if he ever did, but I know that I made a lot of things easy for him. When I began to make things uncomfortable or 'difficult,' there was nothing good enough to make it better.

 I still hurt in this regard, especially as I dissect the situation constantly. I mourn my own loss, I cry for my own foolishness and the ability I had given someone to hurt me so badly. As much as I kick myself for wasting my time for so long, I'm, surprisingly, not too bitter about it. I'm simply done.

I keep myself busy and I'm beginning to open myself up to the realization that this was completely necessary for me to be truly happy. In my sadness, I've turned a lot of energy to my job as well as tending to my affairs at home.

 I recently began the process of organizing my room and, in that process, discovered that, over the years, I had collected more books than I ever realized. When I started tearing up after discovering that I had specific books and didn't find others I expected, I remembered the love I have for reading. The love I have for losing myself in a world that forces me to see things from someone else's perspective, to jump into magical worlds, to face the horrors and dangers in someone else's mind.

 Around the same time I had rediscovered my adoration of the written word, the rest of my own story came to me. I know how it's going to end, how it's supposed to be wrapped up. Having this entire story in my head, I know how the drive to write it down and share it with anyone interested.

Even if no one was interested, it would be a huge testament to myself, the physical result of a long-standing goal, the beginning to much more.

 I've also started to save money so I can go spend a few weeks in Ireland. I have never had much interest in travelling, but I have always wanted to see the green hills, the awe-inspiring castles, meet some of the people I would otherwise miss out on.

I also decided to use this trip as a reward. I'll save up for a few years and when I graduate with my degree(I haven't decided how far to go yet) in Early Childhood Development, I'll go to Ireland before jumpstarting my career. (I'm looking to get started in classes this fall or next spring. Saving money to do so, funny enough.)

 I also had a strange urge. I was walking along in Walmart and I came across all of the cake decorating items. I used to love decorating cakes, baking, experimenting with flavors and different recipes. Now, if I cook or bake, it's out of need and there's very little I can actually play around with. I almost considered spending every penny I had on supplies to bake and decorate cakes in serious manner.

I still intend to, I just need to find a time when I came spend a few hours to make a nice cake from scratch and make the fondant, roll it, make edible flowers and all of these little things that I've discovered I really want to do.

 And, for once in a long time, I have a positive feeling about the outcome with most of these things. Sure, I'm a little afraid that college won't be as easy for me as I hope, but otherwise, I'm confident that I WILL graduate, I WILL find a successful career and I WILL be happy.

The bumps in the road, the curveballs, none of that can hurt me for long. I see where I'm going.

  I can see my future and it gets closer with every day, every step.

 Funny how the events in a few months can change who we are, how we see the world, and how we feel about the good, the bad, and the ugly.

  1. I had no job 
2. I had no drive to go to school to prepare for a CAREER 
3. I spent far too long waiting on someone who had no desire to see me grow in any regard, someone who had no desire to better themselves or encourage me to do so. 
4. I took my easy life for granted. 
5. I gave up my hobbies, my passions.
6. I let my morals relax just enough 
7. I had beliefs but I had no VALUE of my beliefs, even though I knew exactly what my beliefs had done for me in the past. 
8. I had no faith in humanity.  
9. I had no faith in myself, in who I was and wanted to be.


That list, it certainly looks like my problems are getting handled, doesn't it?

I know life will never be 'easy,' but it's certainly easier to look forward to things, to have hope, to believe in positivity.

 So, I'm hoping to blog two or three times a week, as well as working on getting my stories on paper and getting back into soaking up the stories of others.

 I am happy, even at my saddest point, I'm grateful for my life, my family, I'm grateful to be me.

I know where I'm going and, while I might not know how it's all going to come to pass, I know it will.

I know some choices will be made for me and I'll have my own to make, but I can handle it.

  I know it.

 I believe it. 

I believe in me for once.