It has been awhile, I will admit. Lately, I have found it difficult to visit my blog, let alone post anything amidst my midterm exams, theater productions, and "miscellaneous activities." It has certainly been hectic. However, being able to spend a few minutes and quickly compose this message does not mean that I am, in a sense, "back." Though I have several different topics I would love to bring up in separate blog posts, I am afraid that I do not have the time.

I never have the time.

Secondly, I haven't been "in the mood" for writing. I have lost my motivation. Part of this is due to the fact that I have, for the first time in seven years, received a "B" on an essay. What? This does not happen to me! I'm a perfectionist; I'm an English major! I'm a senior in college! What happened?!? I am desperately trying to keep a 4.0, but I feel as if my attempts at participating in class are pointless. My instructors seem to desire more from me--something I cannot supply them with. I am disgusted with my classes, sick of being discouraged. Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe that part of being an English major is learning about how to read, analyze, deconstruct, and interpret literature to your own--my own--personal understanding. Here, however, that does not seem to be the case. Rather, I should be on the same wavelength as my instructors--ones whose opinions I disagree with entirely too often. What further frustrates me is the fact that my instructor asks for ridicule and disagreement, questioning my opinions about the reading. When I begin to explain my understanding, she interrupts, saying, "Well, I don't think so. You'll have to convince me."

Yes--because I have to convince you. She flat-out refuses to understand. Only if I fully convince her to believe my argument will she consider my interpretation.

I am frustrated. I am tired. I am not happy.

I am...wishing for something more. Something better. I want to rationalize my faith and know, for certain, that my prayers will be answered. I can pray that I will make the most out of the time I left at Iowa. I can pray that my loan application will be accepted. I can pray for patience as I wait to hear about my loan. I can pray that I will go back to Indiana smoothly. I can pray for wisdom and guidance and understanding in my relationship with A. I can pray for my friends, who are struggling right now. I can pray for my brother and his new job. I can pray that I will have the time and strength to be able to go home this weekend for Halloween.

But that faith...? That faith isn't married to anything--the pillars of uncertainty remain standing for quite some time.

And, sadly, as I write this entry in a computer lab in the Main Library, I have tears welling in my eyes. "Why is that?" you ask.

I smirk, glance down at the table. What is there to articulate? There have been a lot of new experiences within the last few months, but there has been an equal amount of pain. In fact, since December last year, my life has dramatically--but not radically--changed. Like everyone has done, or will do, I have reached the point where, had you sat me down in a chair on December 19, 2008 and told me where I was going to be at this time, I would credulously laughed.

N. and I wouldn't be together anymore? No way--we've been dating for more than three years. Can't happen.

I'm going to be going to school in Iowa? You've got to joking me! I HATE the in-state universities!

A Theatre major/minor? Really? I have the gall to do that?

I finally start to realize what is wrong about myself and attempt to correct it? Unbelievable. Me-a stubborn illusionist that often paints false images much too well-is going to find some confidence?

I date a conservative Hoosier and allow him to call me Cornstalk? I innocently share my bed with him after only three weeks of knowing him--and weeks before we share our first kiss? I let him tell me what's wrong with myself and attempt to correct things, though I know I can always do better? (And, paradoxically, knowing that I won't be perfect.)

I actually look at wedding dresses for absolutely "no reason" and realize that I like lace?
Wow. Am I that serious? Must be; I just spent two hours talking to my mom Friday night about when/why/where/what/how I would like my wedding to be.

Can I articulate
anything? Somewhat, yes...but not the important things. Not the things that slowly eat away at my conscious, nibble their way into my dreams and cause me to wake up either gasping, screaming, or crying?

Sometimes in the middle of the night, amidst the noise of the drunken eighteen-year-olds stumbling down the hallway and into their rooms, I wonder what it is that bothers me so much. Is it the immature, drunken atmosphere? The "I'm-smarter-than-you-and-am-the-all-knowing-omnipotent-professor" learning environment? The fact that I have to split Thanksgiving and Christmas between two different states? The realization that the best friendships I had in high school seem to fade? The fact that I am afraid to tell anyone that I keep changing my mind--that I don't know what I want because I don't take the time to look deep enough into anything? The fact that, as much as I preach to others about not taking "the easy way out," I often do it myself? The fact that, even though I can--and do--get everything I want, that I feel lonely and unsatisfied?

That reminds me of the time when my mother told me about Marilyn Monroe. I was around eight or nine at the time, and had just seen her picture on television. I had recognized it, but didn't really know who she was. "She was an actress," my mom answered. "A very beautiful actress. I don't know if she was necessarily too smart, but she was beautiful. In a sense, she had everything going for her. She could have everything she wanted...but she was never happy enough." That thought haunted me for a long time; it still does.

No wonder I'm an insomniac. For those nights when I can't sleep, or when I wake up scared--afraid that I will end up alone, unhappy, and unsatisfied, I console the giant, red, annotated Oxford English Bible I keep next to my nightstand. I'll read a few psalms, calms my nerves with the Gospels. It's only when I turn my light back and settle back down into my nest of pillows that my thoughts come racing back. Unsettled, I sit up and flip over the pillow directly beneath my head. I bury my nose into the center of it, inhaling the cologne that A. sprayed there two weeks ago. Slowly exhaling, I flip the pillow back, wanting to preserve the scent as long as I can.

Sighing perhaps a little too deeply, I nestle in. Am I okay?


  1. You are okay.
    Thinking of you and sending calming and happy thoughts your way.
    Hugs, Ali

  2. I really enjoyed this post to the fullest and have found that through you, I have visted some emotions from past and present. I know how you feel in some ways.

    I was an English major, Writing Minor and I know exactly what you mean. They never really want you to see it any other way but theirs. lol. It is so frustrating... I know.

    Life is a journey and you will end up in places that you never thought. I know how sometimes confusing and devastating that can feel. However in the end, you will make it right where you are meant to be.

    By seeking God, you are already on the right track. Keep the faith girl. You are gonna be just fine. Just you wait and see. I will keep you in my prayers.


  3. You are ok!!!

    Don't be frightened to feel pain or frustration. Embrace it. Where there are no valleys, there are no mountains; no rain, there is no sunshine.

    The messages you are hearing from the others; invalidation from your teachers, been replaceable by your former peers; these can be tainted by your own shifting foundations, by change not only of geography, circumstances and relationships but by your own fundamental beliefs.

    You are wise making God your solid foundation cause then there is ALWAYS someOne you are anchored to.

    You are a creative, made in His image for God's pleasure person. Your thoughts and desires are valid, your skills are unique and your perspective belongs right where it is now even though age, experience and God will develop it as you 'engage in life.'

  4. Wow! It seems to me that you are right in the midst of ... finding yourself. I remember being there. It's a rough process, but let me assure you that all that is going on in your life is b/c you're being pruned. But after the fire, you'll find showers of blessings! One day, you'll look back and say to yourself..."I can't believe I made it through that!"
    Don't worry Dawn, it'll all work itself out, you'll see. Besides, you will forever have God on your corner!
    Big Hug!

  5. Thank you, all of you, for the lovely things you have said. Right now, it is very frustrating and disappointing. However, I know that is only temporary; I KNOW--without a doubt--that things will get better. I understand that my time here at the University of Iowa is a trial--my lesson will be revealed in retrospect. Thank you for the "hugs," and for the encouraging words! I do know that there is someone always there for me--a comforting thought when I am experiencing my current trials.


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