Love

This morning I woke up with a heart that felt so full of love.  I’ve had a rough several days but today I finally feel at peace with everyone and everything around me.  Now given a certain person in my life I know that this feeling is merely temporary, but with the love and support of my friends and prayer to God to guide my way I know I can make it through the rough patches in my life.

It is unfortunately very easy for me to lost sight of that sometimes.  Over the last several days I have had to remind myself that God is in control of my life, not me or anyone else.  God alone knows how everything will turn out and he will always lead me in the direction I need to go, he will always lead me through my problems.  In those moments when all I want to do is throw up my hands in frustration, scream and cry, and angrily lose myself in the complete lack of control over my own life, that is when I most need God.  Instead of succumbing to frustration I need to pray for strength.  Instead of screaming and crying I need to pray for patience and grace.  Instead of feeling out of control I need to remember that God is in control today, tomorrow and everyday.

There are times when I question why a certain person has been brought into (and kept) in my life.  She is hateful, angry, and mean.  She is toxic to herself and to everyone around her.  She is miserable with her life and rather than try to improve her life she chooses to try to drag everyone down with her.  She is a sinking ship.  She’s drowning in her own self-loathing.  The past several days she has been coming after me.  Her hateful words and anger have been directed at me like a volcano.  I am not the cause of her anger or frustration, but I am the only person left in her life that she has not completely driven off.  Everybody else has turned their backs on her.  Can you really blame them?

Yes, she upset me.  Yes, I bit my tongue when I wanted to lash out at her just as she was doing to me.  Yes, I have been praying for her.  Not matter how hard she tries to pull me down with her I have someone in my life that is stronger than the negativity that is festering inside her like a boil.  He is my life raft on her sinking ship.  He pulls me back up when she tries to pull me down.  God is stronger than anything she can say or do to me.

When I wonder why she is being allowed to fill my life with so much hate and anger I think about the hate, anger and suffering that Jesus endured on the cross for you and I.  What she puts me through is nothing compared to what Jesus endured for us.

This morning I woke up to another day of life.  I woke up with a job to go to, a little money in my pocket, food on my table, the love of my friends and family.  My life is full of blessings.  Today I am thankful for the people in my life that love and support me, and for those that inspire my love for them.  Today and everyday I am thankful for God’s never-ending, never-changing love for me.  Even when I turned my back on him he still loved me.  Love doesn’t get much better than that.

Until next time . . .

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Temptation (poem)

“No temptation has seized you except what is common to man.  And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear.  But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.”
1 Corinthians 10:13
 
Temptation or fate
Sin or purpose
A heart that is so confused
Faith in God
To not lead me astray
But too mixed up to see how he wants me used
An addict facing the urge
A pull so strong
Unable to walk away from what I don’t need
The taste so sweet
A high so strong
One more time won’t hurt me
Praying for recovery
Strength to sever the ties
But weakness leads the heart forward
A test of my faith
A lesson in letting go
Can I make it through a battle so hard
But what if there is a purpose
What if he is my way to serve
Is he my downfall or can I fix his heart
He is so lost
I am barely found
Bring me closer, God, before he tears me apart
Your fight is already won
Lead me through the battle
Strengthen my heart and guide my way
My sins will lead me down
An urge I can not ignore
Give me the strength to make it through the day
I am weak, God
I am yours
Take this broken girl and rebuild her for you
Your love is in my heart
But temptation is so strong
I need your strength to be who you want me to
One more taste will kill me
One more time will drown me in dark
Deliver me from the evil at my door
Blind my eyes to the need
Close my heart to the sin it craves
Help me fight the temptation so I see it no more
 
“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”
Matthew 6:13
 
By:  Carrie Leigh
03.19.14

Their End (short story)

They sat in his car, drowning in the silence.  He was waiting for her to pour out the words she needed to tell him.  It was cold in the car, the heater having not yet overcome the frigid January air.  Her body trembled with nervous fear that numbed her to the frosty bite of winter.
 
“We could go back into the store,” he suggested between chattering teeth.  “It’s a lot warmer in there.”  He stared at her, hope barely masking the confusion on his face.
 
Despite the cold her palms were sweaty.  Her heart raced and screamed at her to not say the words that her mind was hell-bent on getting out.  She took a deep breath, the exhale making a cloud in the cold air between them.  She looked into his beautiful hazel eyes, trying to get one last memory of him before his eyes turned hard and hateful against her.  She hesitated.  She knew what her words would do to him, but she was ready to live with the consequences.
 
“I consider the day I met you to be one of the greatest days of my life,” she started weakly.  “There was just something about you that pulled me to you.  I could feel fate pushing me to you in a way that I had never felt before.”
 
“Watching me play my drums got you all hot and excited,” he joked, trying to lighten her mood.  She gave him a half-hearted smile.
 
“We became friends and I thought that was all I would ever be to you.  I also thought I was alright with just being friends.  You make me smile and laugh.  You let me watch you play and be your groupie fangirl.  I love being with you when we go out for lunch.”
 
She suddenly went silent.  She knew she could still put the brakes on the rollercoaster in her head.  She knew she could give him a smile and a hug and everything would be alright.  But she also knew that everything wouldn’t be alright.  He would go back inside to work and she would go home with a heart that still ached for him.  She knew that she had to stop the ache and the only way to do that was to break her own heart, and his.  She knew she had to let him go.
 
“I’m glad we’re friends, also,” he assured her as he searched her eyes for what she was hiding from him.
 
“The thing is,” she whispered, her head hanging low and her hair hiding her face, “I want more than just friends.  I want more than just lunch and a hug.  I want more than to be your groupie fangirl.  I want to be with you, Bobby.”
 
He sighed and leaned back against his door.  She stared at him, searching his face for what she hoped he would say.  Instead she saw the wall come down between them.  His truth hung in the air between them like a oppresive weight.  It stabbed at her heart.  Her tears froze in her eyes in the cold car and all she wanted to do was run away from him.  She wanted to take her words back and bury them in her frozen heart and run away from him until she no longer loved him.
 
“Heather, I will always consider you a friend.  I appreciate all of your support when you come out to watch me play.  I can’t give you what you want though.  I just don’t see you that way.  I’m sorry.  But we’ll always be friends.”
 
He opened his arms to her for a hug.  Her body longed to fall into his warm and comfortable embrace.  She wanted to lay her head on his chest, close her eyes, and listen to the steady, strong beat of his heart.  She silently wondered if it would calm the frantic speed of her own heart.
 
She didn’t move.  She couldn’t move.  There was no turning back from what her heart had started.  She got into his car with a goal of easing her aching heart.  She had only broken it more, but she knew that the only way out was to keep moving forward.
 
Pain and rejection crossed his face as his arms fell to his lap.  She could see that he knew she wasn’t done, and it killed her to know that he knew what was coming.
 
“You’ve never rejected a hug from me before.”
 
“I can’t do this anymore, Bobby,” she said weakly as she cast her eyes to the floor.  Her fingers tangled nervously in her hair.  Her heart pounded in her chest as frightened adrenaline surged through her chest.  She wondered how much a heart could take before it finally just exploded.
 
“You can’t do what anymore?  Please tell me that you can’t stay in this car anymore,” he joked, trying to distract her from herself.  “I’m freezing.  Can we please go inside.  If we are friends at all you will let us go in the store where it is warm.”
 
“I can’t do this anymore, Bobby.”
 
He searched her face, but she kept it hidden behind her hair.  “What are you talking about, Heather?”
 
A tear slid down her cheek as the words slid from her mouth.  “I don’t think I can be your friend anymore.”  She felt her heart shatter in her chest.  She wanted to scream at herself to shut up, to beg him to ignore the words she had just said, to fall into his hug and pretend that nothing was wrong with her.  All of that would have been easier than leaving the truth her mouth had just spoken between them.
 
“Are you having some weird girly moment,” he laughed nervously.  “Do I need to give you chocolate and back away slowly?  You are crazy, but that’s why we’re friends.”  The smile fell from his lips when he saw her tears.  “You aren’t kidding, are you?”
 
She just shook her head slowly.
 
“You’re serious, aren’t you?”
 
She nodded her head.  There was no turning back.
 
“What do you mean you can’t do this anymore, Heather?  This is exactly why I never trust people,” he growled.
 
She watch anger tighten his body as he closed himself off to her.  His arms folded across his chest as a shield against her.  She had expected his reaction, but it was still painful to witness.
 
“I didn’t mean to hurt you, Bobby.  That was the last thing I ever wanted to do to you.  I know that you don’t trust people as a rule and that you believe that everyone is going to hurt you.  I never wanted to hurt you.  But what about all the times you have hurt me?”
 
“I have never intentionally hurt you,” he spat at her, his voice filled with ice and venom.
 
“Maybe not intentionally, but I have cried over you more times than you will ever know.”
 
“It’s not my fault you are so sensitive.”
 
“You’re right.  It’s not your fault.  But what is your fault is your callous, selfish, insensitive heart.  You claim to be so lonely, but you push away everyone who tries to climb over your wall.  You do it because you think you are protecting yourself from getting hurt.”
 
“I should have protected myself from you.  Then we wouldn’t be sitting here right now.”
 
“Yeah, because a life spent alone is so much better than a life spent with someone who cares about you,” she threw at him, sarcasm dripping from every word.
 
“You’re right.  It is.  I wish I’d never met you,” he spit at her hatefully, his eyes holding hers in a vice grip.
 
All of the air was forced from her body as his words hit her like bricks.  She felt like she had been slapped across the face.  All she could do was stare at him with anger and disbelief.
 
“In all the moments that you made me angry or cry I never,” she raged at him, “never wished I hadn’t met you.”
 
“Then why don’t you want to be friends anymore,” he begged her, momentarily allowing his broken heart to show.
 
“Because I love you, Bobby.  I fell in love with you so fast and so hard.”  She tried reaching out a hand to touch him.  She wanted to ease his heart, and her own also.
 
“Don’t fucking touch me,” he yelled at her as he jerked his body away from her touch.
 
“Bobby, please believe that I never wanted to hurt you,” she pleaded.
“Yeah, well, you did hurt me.  I hope you are happy with yourself.  You made me trust you.  You made me believe that you were different from everybody else in my life.  I should have known better.  You can bet that is a mistake I will never make again.”
 
She took a deep breath and fought to keep control over everything that was rushing through her.  She bit back her words of anger.  She swallowed the sad pleas for forgiveness.
 
“I love you, Bobby.  I want nothing more than to see you happy . . . “
 
“What would make me happy is if you got out of my car.”
 
” . . . but trying to make you happy is eating me alive.  I’ve lost myself in your world.  You hold my heart, Bobby, but it means nothing to you.  You said so yourself that you don’t love me.”
 
“Did you want me to lie to you?”
 
“Your truth would have come out eventually, just as mine did.  Actually, I think I’ve always known that you never loved me, that you never could.  I don’t know if you can love anyone, because love involved trust . . . “
 
“. . . and nobody can be trusted,” he finished for her, “including you.”
 
“I’m sorry that you feel that way about me.  I tried to be the person that helped rebuild your trust in people.  Would you rather I had lied to you today?”
 
“I’d rather you get out of my car.  I don’t need you.  I never needed you.  Get out!”  His rage boiled just below the surface of his control.
 
“Bobby, please listen to me,” she begged.
 
“Get out of my fucking car!”
 
“I’ll remind you that you had a choice whether or not to befriend me.”
 
“I never had a choice.  You forced your way into my life.”
 
“The night we met you could have let my leave and never said a word to me, but you did say something.  Do you remember what you said to me?”  Bobby stared at her with fire in his eyes and ice in his heart.  “Do you remember what you said,” she prodded.
 
“I said ‘I thought we were friends,'” he mumbled, casting his gaze out the window, “but that is not the foundation for a friendship.”
 
“No, but it was all the encouragement that I needed.  A while later I sent you that message on Facebook.  You could have ignored me, but you didn’t.  You wanted us to be friends as much as I did.”
 
“Yeah, and look at where it got me.  We were friends and now you don’t want to be anymore.  I should have ignored you.”
 
“Bobby, I know that somewhere inside of you there is a heart, and I know it is hurting right now.  For that I am very sorry.  I have to do this for me though.  I hurt every single day because I love you and I can’t stop it.  I am tired of wishing and hoping for something that will never happen.  You are not the only one who is hurting me, Bobby.  I am hurting myself and I’ve got to stop it.”
 
“And you called me selfish,” he mumbled, his face still turned toward the window and away from her.
 
“I’m sorry that you feel that way,” she said softly, sadly.  “If I don’t do it this way then I would have eventually started to hate you.  I never want to look back and hate you.  You mean too much to me.”
 
“That’s too bad because all I will see when I look back is the cold, heartless, bitch that you turned out to be”
 
“It didn’t have to be like this, Bobby.”
 
“Yes, it did, Heather.  We were always destined to end up here.”
 
She opened her arms to him, hoping for one last hug.  He stared at her coldly.
 
“Get out of my car.  You are no longer welcome in my life.”  The finality in his voice cemented closed the fate that she had set in motion.
 
“Bobby . . . “
 
“Get out,” he demanded.
 
“I’m sorry,” she whispered as she fought back fresh tears.  She looked at him for a minute longer, hoping he would turn his eyes her way one last time, but he didn’t.  He kept his face turned away from her and that would be her last memory of him.
 
She reached for the handle and opened the door.  The cold January night air bit at her tears.  She stepped out of the car and closed the door gently.  He never turned to look at her.
 
“I’m sorry, Bobby,” she whispered into the frozen night wind.  She hoped that one day her words would find their way to his heart.
 
She got into her own car and drove away for the final time from the music store that he worked at.  She hoped that store would bring him as much solace as it had brought him joy since she’d met him.  She turned out of the parking lot into the road.  She glanced into her rearview mirror hoping for one last glimpse of him.  She never noticed the oncoming traffic until it was too late.
 
The truck his her in the driver’s side door.  She was killed on impact.
Bobby went back into the store.  He never turned around at the sound of the car accident, and he never thought of Heather ever again.
 
By:  Carrie Leigh
01.29.14
 

This short story actually ended up being a bit prophetic.  This is essentially how the conversation went with the drummer a week ago minus the car accident and death.  I wrote this back in January and lost it.  I forgot about it until I found it in one of my MANY notebooks a few days ago.  It freaked me out just a bit at how similar this story was to how the actual conversation ended up going a month and a half after I wrote this.

Rebirth day

It has been several weeks since I posted anything.  The lack of Carrie-posts was not due (completely) to a lack of anything to write.  It was because there has been so much change in my life lately that I needed an opportunity to step back, take a deep breath, and asses it all.  Normally I fear change, but this has been an amazing, eye-opening experience that I could have never expected when I took the first step.

Yesterday I posted a few poems that earned me a few new followers.  To those new followers I want to give a warm greeting and say thank you for following me.  Allow me to introduce myself . . .

My name is Carrie Leigh.  I am a wife, mother, sister, daughter, and friend.  I am a writer, reader, lover of music and cooking.  I am a d.j. at a Western Kentucky radio station.  I recently celebrated my rebirth day.  Yes, you read correctly . . . rebirth day.  On February 23, 2014 I finally accept Jesus Christ into my heart.

The adventure to the present started on February 22nd, or maybe it would be better to say that it started 37 years before that.

I am the product of several broken homes.  My mom remarried (and divorced) once after divorcing my dad, and my dad remarried (and divorced) two more times.  There were also several of my parent’s significant others that traipsed in and out of my life, and a and endless string of step-brothers and step-sisters.  Needless to say I have difficulty forming attachments, and take it really hard when someone I get attached to leaves my life.

My former step-father was an abusive alcoholic who felt the need to take aim at me.  One night found me and my mom escaping the house after his tirade finally ended and he fell asleep.  We spent the night with one of my aunts after we stopped at the police station on the way to her house.  He tried to buy my affection back the next day with a new pair of socks.

I was almost raped by a former boyfriend when I took him to the store to buy a Mother’s Day card for his mom.  Luckily a police car drove by and spooked him.  He then tried to blame it on me, and his mother threatened to get him a lawyer because I refused to take the blame for what he tried to do.

My father is a recovered drug addict.  He lost his business, home, cars, entire family except for me . . . he lost everything.  He and I didn’t speak for a long time because of the anger I had at him for throwing everything away.  Via letters through the good ol’ postal service while he was in prison we worked through my anger and I am sadly the only family member he has that will actually speak to him.

The relationship I was in right before I started dating my husband was mentally and physically abusive.  He would berate me, hit on other women in front of me, scream and yell at me, leave bruises that he made sure were able to be covered by clothing.  That was the first time I cheated in a relationship.  I had no control over that relationship.  I couldn’t get out of it and was completely unhappy.  So I found someone who made me happy, if only for a little while.

I am not saying all of this to you so that you will feed pity for me . . . “Oh, poor Carrie.”  There are people in this world who have it so much harder than me.  I know that compare to some people my life has been a cake walk.  I’ve always had a roof over my head.  I’ve never wanted for any necessity.  There wasn’t much money when I was growing up.  Yes, I was the poor kid in class, but my mom and dad always made sure that I made it to band practice and that I had a steady supply of reeds and cork grease for my Clarinet and Saxophone.

What I am saying is that everyone has a story to tell.  Everybody has a wound that needs to be healed.  I got so tired of holding on, of lying to myself that I was alright, that I didn’t need help.  I went to church with a friend on February 23rd and every wall that I had against God broke down.  I had no defenses left against him and, in tears, cried “God, I need you now!”

I was not raised in the church.  My family is Baptist, and I attended Baptist churches periodically as a child.  I went to mass at a couple of different Catholic churches with my father’s 2nd wife, and attended services regularly for about a year at a Methodist church when I was a teenager.  Out of all those churches and denominations I never found a place that felt like home.  I never felt the presence of God.

Then God sent me Brandi.  I’ve known her for almost a year, and she and I became close friends fast.  I was at work the night of February 22nd when she came to visit me.  She had gotten involved with a new church a few months earlier and renewed her relationship with God.  I believe that everything happens for a reason, and that everyone is brought into our lives for a reason.  Brandi was brought into my life to witness to me and help me find my way to God.  I promised to go to church with her the next morning, and I kept my promise despite the fear that almost kept me at home.  I was terrified!  I hadn’t set foot in a church in nearly 10 years.

The words she said to me that Saturday night left me with no doubt that God was calling me to take him into my life.  At church the next day that fact was completely undeniable.  As we sat there near the end of the service I could feel God pulling at my heart.  I could feel him holding his hand out to me.  I just had to reach out and take it.  I prayed and opened myself up to Him and nothing has been the same since.  I was baptized the next Sunday.

In the past three weeks life has not gotten easier.  I now see aspects of my life that I previously thought were okey dokey as selfish, prideful, and against God’s word.  I am working really hard to clean my life back up.  Unfortunately that meant that I had to hurt someone who had a become a very good friend to me . . . the drummer.

I have been married for almost nine-and-a-half years, and met the drummer last October.  I was swept away by him, and before I knew it I had fallen in love with him.  A couple of days ago I met with him and told him that I was trying to clean my life back up and get it back on track.  That meant that I had to let go of him for a little while.  The conversation did not go how I hoped.  Mean things were said, anger flared, trust was broken, and the potential for a future friendship may have been lost.  I can only pray and hope that God will lead the drummer and I into a proper friendship, not one that is based on improper intentions, if it is His will.  Does that mean that I do not miss the drummer?  Absolutely not.  He made me laugh and smile.  We got along well, and could talk about anything.  But consummated or not  adultery is adultery if the intention is there, and what do the Ten Commandments say about adultery?  But I still miss him, and pray that God helps me get my heart in the right place and helps the drummer see past his anger with me to be able to see that.

I make time to pray everyday.  I’ve found that my 45-minute drive to and from work is a great time to talk to God.  I have a great support system in Brandi, Church and my husband.  There have been a few occasions over the last few weeks (especially this week) where it seemed like it would be easier to throw in the towel and return to my former ways, but God has faith in me that I can overcome all the obstacles that are trying to keep me from him.  So I have faith that he will give me the strength, patience, and guidance to get me past those obstacles.

I can’t wait to see where God leads me.  Please feel free to join me on my new journey.  Brandi said it best that Saturday night at work . . . “Don’t change.  Just come.”

Until next time . . .

She Loves Him (poem)

For, oh how she loves him
More than words can describe
She loves him wildly and fully
She loves him gentle as a sigh
His voice is her music
His laughter, her breath of air
His warm embrace, a haven
Making her want to lose herself there
He pulled at her heart the moment they met
She was captivated, she was swept away
The sight of him, the thought of him
Brightened her like a new Spring day
She would do anything to make him smile
Even if it meant not saying a word
The way he makes her knees go weak
She knows is not reciprocated for the girl
But he holds her heart in his hands
He has brought new light to her world so dim
So fast, so strong, so completely
Oh, how wildly she loves him

By:  Carrie Leigh
02.18.14

Dear Friend

Dear Friend,

I have known you for days, weeks, months, years . . . forever, it seems.  I can say that I don’t remember a time before I knew you, but I do.  Instead what I do say is that I remember a time that I was waiting for you.  I didn’t know It was you I was waiting for, but the moment you walked into my life I knew I had found a kindred spirit.

We know each other so well.  Sometimes I feel like we know each other better than we know ourselves.  The good, the bad, the beautiful, and the ugly.  There is so much still left to discover about each other though, and the promise of those discoveries makes me as excited as a child on Christmas morning.

I don’t know the exact moment that I looked at you and saw not just a friend but someone that I loved.  You opened my heart and found your way in.  It was a slow and wonderful process, like watching the sun rise and warm up a new Spring day.  I do love you.  You are more than a friend.  You are family.

You are someone that I’d fight for and protect.  You I would stand up for and stand up to.  You are the one I can talk to without saying a word.  Together we have learned that a gentle touch can’t always heal a broken heart, but the comfort from a friend that it can bring can mean the world when fighting back tears.  A joke that only we understand leaves us laughing until tears roll from our eyes and we are holding our aching stomachs.  That laughter is the beautiful soundtrack to our days, weeks, years spent together.

I didn’t know when we met just how much you would change me and my life.  Because of you my life is so much better.  Because of you my life is complete.  You fill my heart with happiness and love just by being everything that you are.  When you are joyful I am, too.  When you are down I feel your pain in my heart.  When you are hopeful I reach for the stars with you.  When you break I hold your pieces together in my heart.

We haven’t always had it easy, Friend.  We have fought and cried.  We’ve shared angry silence that left me fearful of our future.  Our bond, though sometimes stretched thin, has never broken though, because our two hearts make one complete soul.  I am your glitter and giggles.  You are my foundation.  I am your sky-high wings.  You are my roots.  I am your sunflowers and you are the sun they reach for.  We are two.  We are one.  We are friends.

Many people have come into our lives since the day you and I met, but through them all it is our friendship that remains constant.  Through everything our friendship has remained strong, and continues to get stronger everyday.  You have my heart, Friend.  You have my life.  You are the vessel from which our friendship grows.  You are the muse that inspires my love for you.  You are everything that I am and everything I hope to be.  I hold you in my heart, and you give me wings to fly.  Before we met we were two lost puzzle pieces searching for our match piece.  Others came along who almost fit.  Then Fate brought us together and our puzzle was complete.

I don’t know what lies ahead of us, Friend.  You can bet that I look forward to each day life gives us though.  No matter what comes at us I will reach for your hand and step forward with you.  Side-by-side we will be warmed by the sun of our friendship.  We will face down whatever storms come our way.  We will laugh and cry.  We will fight and hug.  We will comfort and uplift.  We will know that nothing is too strong to break the connection we share.

I love you, Friend.  You are me.  I am you.  My life has not been the same since the day I met you.  My life has been made better.  I have been made better for having you in my life.

I have known you for what feels like all my life, but in the grand scheme of life has been a mere blink of an eye.  You are one of the greatest gifts to be given to me, and I will be forever thankful that Fate brought is together.

You are my heart.  You are my family.  You are my friend, and I love you.

Always,
Your friend

Unexpected Friend (poem)

You came out of nowhere
Into my safe, sane world
You turned everything upsidedown
Made everything crazy for this girl
You found the key to my locked-up heart
That had been closed for so long
You made me feel what I thought dead
I fell in love fast and strong
You threw my heart into a tailspin
Faster than your drumsticks can fly
One moment my life was predictable
And the next I was swept away by your eyes
I fought it in the beginning
I scratched and clawed to push you away
But Fate had bigger plans for us
When she brought us together that day
In your shy heart I found a friend
My safe, sane world has been changed because of you
An unlikely pairing between two people so different
But perfect as friends, Fate knew
You shattered my protected world
With your smile and your eyes
And made me see a better world
Born of a fated meeting one night

By:  Carrie Leigh
01.30.14

Lying Eyes (poem)

She stares at him
Through lying eyes
She puts a mask on her heart
To, her true feelings, disguise
He doesn’t know she loves him
That her heart beats his name
It’s a secret she’ll keep hidden
Even when her tears pour down like rain
She blossoms with his smile
Loses herself in his hug
Touchstones to cling to
When hiding her secret is too rough
She will never tell him
The only secret she won’t tell her friend
Because opening the door on what she keeps hidden
Would bring their road to its end
So she’ll lie to protect them both
She’ll hide her eyes and her heart
Because hiding the truth is easier
Than watching their friendship fall apart

By:  Carrie Leigh
01.30.14

Why didn’t anyone tell me that life isn’t a Disney movie?

We’ve all been in those situations where you’re having a conversation, a debate, an argument, and you are at a loss for words.  Yet, later when remembering the encounter you think of all the snappy comebacks and one-liners that you should have fired off in the moment.  And who hasn’t had a looming big event . . . a date, a job interview, anything.  We’ve all allowed our mind to wander and imagined that event playing out perfectly.  You’ve imagined what everyone would do and say, and in those fantasies you always come out looking like the rock start, don’t you?  Of course you do, because who honestly fantasizes about being a bumbling idiot?  But reality rarely lives up to our fantasies, and then we’re left to live with the disappointment, the hurt, the broken heart.

As delusional as it sounds that it why I enjoy writing so much.  Every situation that I put the characters into can play out exactly as I want it to.  Do I want the characters to kiss and fall in love?  Do I want the good-looking man to notice the shy girl across the room?  Do I want the wallflower to finally stand up to everyone that has wronged her?  With a pen in hand and a blank piece of paper to fill I can make anything happen.  So why can’t I do that in reality?  The answer is simple:  Because real life is not a scene that can be controlled by my imagination.  Real life is not a Disney movie.

I’ve fallen into a bit of a funk lately as that reality has really seemed to slap me in the face.  I’ve always had a fanciful imagination which has benefited me well when I’ve wanted to put pen to paper.  Yet when faced with a real life scenario I imagine the way I want it to play out and then go home disappointed when the fantasy fails to live up to my hopes, my imagination.

Girls are raised, no thanks to those beautiful princesses in Disney movies, that a Prince Charming will come along and rescue us from our dreary life of housecleaning and Lifetime movies.  We grow up knowing that a few songs, a pretty dress made by our talking animal friends, and a lost slipper will earn us the happily-ever-after that we want.  Then you wonder why so many women are so unhappy with the state of their love lives.  It’s because Prince Charming doesn’t fucking exist!  Life is not a Disney movie.  Animals don’t sing and make beautiful ball gowns.  There is no fairy godmother to turn a pumpkin into a royal carriage.  And if you lost your shoe at a party then you don’t find love, you are simply left with a bare foot.  That’s it.  That is life.  There is no catchy soundtrack.  We can only hope that we have a good song playing on the stereo when the pizza guy shows up at the door.

I’m feeling a bit jaded today, in case you hadn’t noticed.

I was raised on those same Disney princesses . . . Show White, Cinderella, Belle.  In reality we need more princesses like Fiona after she accepts loves true form as an ogre.  Girls need to be taught that there is no Prince Charming, but that the world is full of Shreks.  Men are just as broken and lonely as us.  Men don’t know how to admit their weaknesses because they are supposed to be big, strong, manly men.  Men who are just as afraid as women of not just falling in love but of even looking for it to begin with because they think all we want is Prince Charming.

This past weekend I found myself in not one but two different situations that I would have love to have played out differently.  I so badly wanted the man to get the girl, for music to play, for magic to happen.  Instead what happened was the girl was left pinning after the music-making-man, a few laughs, a few hugs, a kiss on the music-mans cheek, and a fairly definite feeling that the girl had gotten friendzoned.  That’s another thing:  There is no friendzone in Disney movies.  What a reality check that was the first time I encountered that horrid situation.

I know in reality we can’t make someone love us.  Yet we still try day after day.  We do nice things for the other person.  We adopt their interests as our own.  We support them.  We encourage them.  We fall in love with them.  But sometimes we end up in that land that is the basis of so many of the greatest poems, stories, and songs:  Unrequited love.  It’s a place that I am all-too-familiar with, but that doesn’t make it hurt any less.

Yes, I imagined my encounters with the drummer going differently this weekend.  Yes, I hoped that maybe he would finally see me as a woman and not just as a friend and loyal supporter of his music.  Yes, I went home disappointed at the end of both evenings.  Why?  Because the fanciful imagination that benefits me well when I am writing laid out a scenario in my head that I knew would never happen but I still held out hope.  Because in my imagination I can put together events that work out far better than the reality that is before me.  In my imagination the drummer gets the girl.  In my imagination they do live happily-ever-after.  In my imagination she helps him overcome the demons that stand between them in reality.  In my imagination the girl is not just the drummers friend, but she is his love.

But in reality . . . she pines for him, she longs for him, she wishes and dreams for him, she supports him, she laughs with him, she hugs him, she kisses him on the cheek.  In reality she is his friend.

In Disney movies the Princess and Prince Charming are never just friends.  As a matter of fact, in Disney movies a female character is never friends with a male character.  Yet some of my greatest friends have always been guys.  My best friend is a guy.  He is like a brother to me.  Even when I am writing there are never any male/female friendships.  I am friends with the drummer, at least I think I am.  He may just see me as some weird fangirl.  He may see me as his “in” as the radio station when he has a request.  I don’t know, and honestly I don’t care.  I met him back in October and my life has not been the same since.  Not at all.

Crazy, deluded Disney expectations aside.  Overactive imagination aside.  I am happy that he is in my life.  I am happy that I met him.  I have been able to get to know him a little more with each passing day and am finally getting to know the man behind the drummer.  Do I regret meeting him just because reality isn’t living up to the Disney-inspired writers imagination?  Not at all.  Do I still imagine escaping the friendzone?  Absolutely!  Will I still see him the next time I imagine a new male character?  More than likely.

Life may not be a Disney movie.  I may let my imagination run away with me far more than I should.  But reality is the inspiration for the best stories and so far the drummer and I are writing a great story of friendship.  It’s been a long time since somebody has made me laugh the way he does.

My Heart (poem)

My heart is a fragile thing
But it’s not made of glass
It’s made of everyone who came before you
All the good memories and the bad
It’s the broken pieces of my heart’s darkness
that give my healed heart its future light
And everything that it’s been through
Makes it stronger, makes it fight
Know that if I give you my heart
You will have it till my end
I’m trusting you with all that’s built me
Because you are my friend
 
By:  Carrie Leigh
01.24.14