Letters from the Heart – Dear Faraway Soldier

Dear Faraway Soldier,

I spent a lot of time rewriting this letter in my head. I think it’s partially because I still talk to my other Childhood Friend and Poet, but not you. There was never the slightest sense of closure; we had no words for each other. But I owe you an explanation; I owe myself that, too.

So, why haven’t I talked to you since you came back? I doubt you would have wanted to in the beginning, but I confess, I probably should have tried. It wasn’t fair of me, but please let me explain. I was so mad at you. I found out the truth of you were, what you did. I got a new job and people there knew you, they told me stories about you that horrified me. You told me you were someone else. You went to youth group with me, and you knew the one thing that kept me from dating you was your relationship with God. I wanted you to long for Him more than you longed for me. You said you could, you would, you did, but I held back. When I found out all those stories, what you were involved in, I was so thankful that I hadn’t dated you. I was so angry at all the lies you fed me, all the stories I had believed.

But you, I bet you were mad too. You were probably mad that I said I would wait. You were probably hurt that instead of writing to you tons, I sent two short letters. I had the time, so why didn’t I write more? You were alone, you needed someone, and I wasn’t there. How could I have abandoned you? I told you that when you came back from serving the country that maybe there would be an us.

I think that our problem rests not in lying to each other, but ourselves. I never planned on lying to you, and I genuinely believe the same of you now. I thought those nights we spent stargazing in some stranger’s field, eating Oreos and watching fireflies, I thought that they were going to continue. I never planned for you to come back to me holding the hand of another man.

And you? I think those promises you made about who you were, I think that’s who you really wanted and tried to be. I think that you tried to change, you tried to be someone that I wanted, but how could you? There was no one else there to support you.

So, Faraway Soldier, I want you to know that I never intended to hurt you. I never planned for your return to go the way it did, and for that, I am truly sorry. I hope that you are doing well, wherever you are. I pray that you have found the Love that you were always searching for, and that you find the love you so desperately want.

Best wishes to you,

“White Girl Can Run”

Clean Eating Challenge – Day 2

Chocolate mint shake = delicious. Banana chunks in the chocolate shake = not so delicious.

That was snack yesterday.

Last night was horrible. I’ve learned that fresh breadsticks are the ultimate temptress and being a server on an extreme diet is absolutely no fun. There was a lot of hunger involved.

I woke up today refreshed and ready to conquer another day of clean eating. That lasted about 3 hours.

Hunger has taken over my existence. The craving for carbohydrates is intense, and the delicious cake that just came out of the oven isn’t helping. At all.

I’ve also become extremely irritable, nearly breaking into tears over the lack of medium salsa (but really, isn’t it annoying when people DON’T PUT THE USED UP ITEM ON THE GROCERY LIST LIKE THEY ARE SUPPOSED TO?????) Anyway.

I’m also here to tell you something else.

Anyone who tells you that fat free cheddar cheese tastes the same as regular cheese has clearly become delusional from malnutrition. It doesn’t.

I am bitter. Just like my whole grain, not-nearly-enough-fat-free-cheese quesadilla (a supplement for today’s heinous lunch).

Clean Eating Challenge

The wedding is 19 days away now. With that in mind, I decided to seek out a clean eating challenge. My mother, who has been doing quite a few of them, agreed to join me.

Over the next 7 days, I will be blogging about our experience. If you care to follow along, or even koi the journey, you can check out the meal plan here.

However, clean eating isn’t the only thing. We’ve also committed to working out 30+ minutes per day, with Sundays as a rest day.

So, today is day one.

Breakfast was good, especially with the pairing of vanilla yogurt and an apple- yum! The snack was also pretty good, although Mom and I found ourselves eyeing the peanut butter jar. Still, we were satisfied. In between breakfast and snack, we each did our respective workouts. Mom has been doing 21 Day Fix through BeachBody, while my workout session was with Jillian Michaels and the 30 Days Shred.

Then came lunch. It was orange. It smelled good. There was potential. Let me repeat that, there WAS potential.

day1

But I just couldn’t do it, and apparently, our dog Einstein agreed. It wasn’t consumable.

Props to my mother though, she finished her bowl.

Needless to say, I’m looking forward to the chocolate mint shake in ~2 hours. Yes, please!

Letters from the Heart – Dear Poet

Dear Poet,

It’s been a while since we talked. I guess distance does that. You’re off in another country, and I’m here. Weren’t we both supposed to go to our respective lands? Ahh well, I guess you’d say life has a funny way of working itself out. But I guess that’s not the distance I’m talking about. No, we had long since stopped talking. We’d long since stopped sitting on the concrete steps, smushing ants with our toes, you drinking your Amp and spitting tobacco, me looking wistfully at the sky while the wind of 18-wheelers whipped my hair about my face. Those were the days, huh?

I’ve told you I’m sorry before. I’m sorry that I changed, that I stopped contacting you, that I moved on. But, I don’t think I’ve ever told you thank you.

Thank you for walking with me through some of the hardest days of my life. Thank you for supporting me when it seemed like the whole world was plotting to make me miserable. Thank you for caring when I thought no one did, or even could.

You’re probably wondering why. Why did my emails get fewer and farther between, why did I stop coming to talk to you? Was it other peoples’ opinions? Partially. But more than that I was scared. I couldn’t help you. My words became rusty and dry, syllables that cranked out of my mouth mechanically, as if I had scripted conversations with you. I didn’t want that. I felt sincerity dissipate and frustration replace it. I wanted to help you, to save you– but I couldn’t.

I’ve learned that now. I can’t waltz into someone’s life trying to save them because I’m not savior. He is. I’m simply meant to be a sign, pointing in the right direction.

I know that would just bring us to our weighty theological talks, the ones that we had so frequently. Sometimes I wonder if we even comprehended the weight of our words, and the meaning behind destiny.

Still, despite everything that has happened in these past few years, I want you to know that I think about you often. I want you to know that I’m thankful for everything you did for me, and I hope that you’re finding your way to the happiness I’ve reached, to the God whose arms are the epitome of love.

Oh, and one more thing: I couldn’t ante up. The chips were never in my hand; they were always in His.

Much love,

Paige

Letters from the Heart – Dear Childhood Friend

Dear Childhood Friend,

We haven’t really spoken in 6 years, so I know it’s weird that I’m writing this letter to you. The way you hurt me on May 31st, 2009 was unlike any pain I’d ever felt before. I feel like I lost a bit of innocence that day, maybe even a bit of myself.

I’ve harbored up bitterness towards you all these years. Maybe I should’ve written sooner, but I’m not so sure I could’ve. I wasn’t ready to apologize.

Apologize? Yes. You see, even though we told each other everything, I now realize there are somethings that are beyond everything. There were somethings so deeply painful that you couldn’t tell me. I never realized that before this past year. I now know what you were going through at home.

So, I guess I’m writing this letter to tell you I’m sorry. I’m sorry that I couldn’t have been that safe haven for you. I’m sorry that I couldn’t hold your hand and walk with you through your world of darkness; I was just too young. I had no idea what your life was like when I spent hours crying, wishing I could be like you, wishing I was you.

I don’t do that anymore. How could I, now that I know the truth?

My friend, I am so, so sorry.

Just know one thing, please. If you want to, you can still stay over at my house. Any time.

Love,

The friend I promised you I’d be.

34 days away.

Excitement abounds.