Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Travelling Swallowing Dramamine.

New York City:
Center of the Universe.
As I made my way through the faces and the speeding cars, I felt more human than fathomable. There's something about the smell of sewage and fresh bread combined that puts a tingle right in the pit of my soul. I walked along, doing my best to notice each face without being caught because, well, you see, eye contact is illegal in the Big Apple.
I love New York City. It never ever changes. But, at the very same time, it can never ever stay the same.
You will never see the same face twice. You have to look quickly, or your chance is lost forever and a face you can't imagine will go unseen. Each face is different; each face is unique; each face is beautiful. My favorite part is to look around at the faces and imagine God carving each and every single one of them. Each face is a masterpiece. The world is an art museum. And you, my friend, are art.

San Diego:
My version of Sweden.
(I stayed in a house full of attractive Swedish boys for a week. Unfortunately, I never knew if they were talking trash on me in Swedish, but goodness... They were beautiful.)
I stood on the beach, hair aimlessly flipping and flapping through the wind. The smell of salt colliding with the SPF 90 sunscreen I relied on to protect me from sheer torture and endless woe. I climbed to the top of a nearby rock, and the wind picked up, raising the hairs on my bare limbs.
The white noise filled my soul, and I found myself in a perfect state of tranquility.
I started to think about life. Not my life, not the meaning of life, but life itself. And how extraordinary it really is.
Have you ever thought about life like that?
You must have. You are human, after all. Don't we all think about that?
Sometimes I think about it so much that, if I begun to talk about it, I would cry.
At this moment, on the top of my rock at the beach, I found myself giggling with tears in my eyes.
(I love teary-eyed giggles. Like the ones I shared with MJP and AK at Cavestock as they played "Fix You." Or like the ones that come out when MAV and I talk about real life matters, and how they are so real and actually kind of funny. Please tell me you know what giggles I'm talking about.)
I looked from my tall rock down at the sand. There was a young girl standing down there, just far enough back from the water so that her toes were an inch away from being touched by the tide. She looked frighful. She was wearing yellow shorts and a yellow Spongebob shirt. I loved her the moment I saw the shirt. She looked around 8 years old, with long dark hair back in a pony tail, giving a clear view of her plump face.
She was about to touch the water, but backed up as the tide came close. She turned around with a look of disgusted unsurity and faced a woman I would assume to have been her grandmother. The woman gave her a disappointed look and said something to her with an instructive hand to turn around and go play in the water. The girl gave a huff and said something back, however the ocean was too loud and I was too high up and far away to hear the discussion between the two of them. Spongebob girl turned back around and touched her toe to the water. She quickly removed it and backed up. Then repeated the exact same motion about four times. Slowly, she got a little more wet, and would allow the water to attend to another part of her body. Before long, she was fully submerged in the water, running into the waves, falling, and allowing the tide to scoot her back up to the shore. She was giggling and laughing and happily screaming all the while.
I couldn't stop laughing.
I wasn't laughing at her, of course.
I was laughing with her. Because I knew she could do it from the very beginning. I knew she would overcome her fear of the water. Just as I knew I could overcome every fear I've ever had.

Moral of the story: Sometimes we have to stick our toes in the water before we can go for a swim. Not all of us were made to dive right in, and that's absolutely okay. That's human.

I did it.
Coast to coast.
In under two day. 
There you have it in short, ladies and gentlemen.

And now I'm home.

Sort of.

My homeless version of home.

And it's nostalgically wonderful to be here.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

the in-between.

(from a rowboat at versailles)

does anyone else feel like this?
like we're stuck in between what we've known and something new?
i'm between high school and adulthood,
i'm between one family and another,
i'm between a job and a different job,
i'm between having friends and losing them,
i'm between daydreams and reality,
i'm between teenagers and returned missionaries,
and i'm between younger and young.

it's a funny feeling.
this summer is like a little boat, traveling between two pieces of land.
i have to stay on until i can step across,
but i've never been in a place like this before and i know i won't stay long.
it bobs around a little bit,
trying to balance me, the old, and the new.
there's only so much luggage i can fit with me on this little boat.
i can't decide if i like it, either.
i can see both sides, but  neither are fully mine.
it's odd to see yourself gain and lose simultaneously.
and to know that you'll be losing some of the dearest things you've ever had.
but that you'll be gaining things that maybe you never dreamed of.
i don't want to step off, because i don't know if i'm ready.
but i'm as ready as i'll ever get.
and i'm interested to see what's on the other side.

land, ho.


Friday, June 17, 2011

soul mates.

more lessons from eat, pray, love.

"...it's so hard for me to get over this guy because i seriously believed David was my soul mate."'

"he probably was. your problem is you don't understand what that word means. people think a soul mate is your perfect fit, and that's what everyone wants. but a true soul mate is a mirror, the person who shows you everything that's holding you back, the person who brings you to your own attention so you can change your life. a true soul mate is probably the most important person you'll ever meet, because they tear down your walls and smack you awake. but to live with a soul mate forever? nah. too painful. soul mates, they come into your life just to reveal another layer of yourself to you, and then they leave. your problem is, you just can't let this one go..."

"but i love him."

"so love him."

"but i miss him."

"so miss him. send him some love and light every time you think about him, and then drop it. if you clear out all that space in your mind that you're using right now to obsess about this guy, you'll have a vacuum there, and open spot--a doorway. and guess what the universe will do with that doorway? it will rush in--god will rush in--and fill you with more love than you ever dreamed."

we are teenage girls.
we are infamous for our skewed perceptions of love.
we are stereotyped as boy-crazy, squealing, ice-cream eating, chick-flick watching, ignorant people.
and that stereotype might be true.
if i was any indication--because i didn't realize this until a little while ago--there's something we don't understand.

i don't think we understand that these boys are merely boys.
they aren't the reason we're here. they aren't the sole purpose for us to live. they aren't super heroes that will fix everything that's wrong with us. they aren't magic.
they won't stay forever.
they aren't supposed to.
they are here to teach us.

maybe you think you love a boy, but maybe he's hurting you. let him go. he's here to show you that you have to be strong on your own.he's showing you your weaknesses, so that you can see them.
he's a tool for your growth.


-thinking that you're in love with someone who makes you feel awful eighty percent of the time.
-justifying that he's worth it because of that twenty percent of the time.
-basing your self worth on what he says.
-doubting you can do things on your own.
-hating your own company.
-feeling lonely.


-to realize that you're beautiful.
-to realize that you're strong.
-being grateful for him.
-sending him light and love.
-being yourself.
-seeing the lessons.
-seeing god.

you might not guess. but i understand.

i am tired, so so tired,
of reading the blogs of sweet, interesting, unique girls,
but only seeing words of confusion, mostly brought on by a boy, or two, or three.
they aren't your life.
please, please, please.
just be you before you're anybody else's.

god is waiting to step into your heart.
he's waiting to make those weaknesses strengths. 
and sometime later,
maybe a year later,
you'll look at the boy who showed them to you with love and gratitude.
i did.

i was where you are.
he was angry and he yelled.
he made me feel tiny.

i read this book last march,
and then i understood why.

love. it will not betray, dismay or enslave you. it will set you free, to be more like the (girl) you were made to be. there is a design, an alignment, a cry of my heart to see the beauty of love as it was made to be.

love isn't pain.
love isn't confusion.
love doesn't feel dark.

love was designed to be beautiful.

and what i was experiencing wasn't love--though i'd thought a few times that it might be. it was a lesson. it was an experience, and a process. it was another way to see who i am inside.
just for good measure, my walls had to be knocked down two-fold, so i could see the foundation i was resting on.
and for that, i was able to build up.
i was meant to be strong.
i was meant to be calm.
i was meant to be understanding.
i was meant to be patient.
i was meant to be iron-willed.
i was meant to be hannah.

and i wouldn't have found it without him.

i wonder if this is too personal.
but i don't even care, too much.
i want you to know.

i'm responsible for who i am.
he just helped me see it.
i feel silly and i feel vulnerable writing this.
but it's the truth as far as i see it.

i guess what i'm getting at is that it really doesn't matter. your adolescence is about finding yourself. it isn't, by any means, about finding the love of your life. adolescence is so hard because we are handed endless amounts of awkward and difficult and confusing things so that we can be able to figure out our foundations, and so we can stick to them when we become adults and our decisions have graver consequences. we are teenage girls, and so teenage boys are an easy thing to slam us with as a vehicle for this finding-out process.
and i believe that is exactly what the purpose of high school relationships (or lack of them) are.
to smack you awake and show you your flaws and your strengths so you can use them when you need them.

i am by no means trying to assert that every experience with a boy will be awful. they can just as easily teach us in a positive way. but it seems that as of late all i've seen is drama and confusion, and that's what has brought upon this post.

the idea is that i believe that once we find that special person that we love more than any other, they aren't going to complete us.
they shouldn't complete us.
we should be whole on our own, and they should set us free.
so it's not about one certain boy or the other girls or the way your heart feels or kisses or butterflies.
it's about you.
it's about you becoming you.

i wish someone would have told me that.

love, hannah.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

what's up my sleeve.

exciting things,
i tell you.
several exciting ideas, all of which involve packages and strangers.
firstly, we are going to start small.
here's the plan:
we put together a group of senders.
and we senders will send a certain thing every month (a postcard, a favorite poem, a photo, a cd) to another sender.
it will be different each month,
and we will all receive something if we mailed something.
and we can all share our little glimpses of joy. and get to know each other.
it will be very fun.
very fun, 
i tell you.

this first month,
we are going to start with a cd of your favorite summer tunes.
since this is the first time,
we are going to only send to one receiver. and you will receive one in turn.

email me--at hannah.mallory1@gmail.com.
  • name
  • address
  • this statement: "i, ______, swear on the goodness of snowcones and the beauty of sunshine and the legacy of (your favorite legendary figure) that i will absolutely no questions asked send my letter to the recipient i am assigned to. if i fail to do this, i understand that bad karma will forever haunt me, bringing upon me melted snowcones and lightning & thunder and a life without (said legendary figure)."
 the deadline to email me your info will be next saturday, JUNE 18th, 2011.
on sunday i will email you the address and name of the person you will be sending your cd to.
i will also give you further instructions.
deal, yo?
i'm a lot bit excited.

sincerely, hannah

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

tour de france II

and now, another special treat. coming straight to you from normandy...

this is the city of caen, where we went to church.
i met several missionaries, they were cute.
one of them happened to be miss elizabeth smart.
she is an incredible woman.
this is the cathedral there.
there was also a huge farmer's market,
i bought several crepes.
they are cheap on the street.
un crepe de la confiture s'il vous plait...

next, we travel to the d-day beaches.
these places are beautiful,
and they are also sacred.
i admire the fidelity and courage of the young men who fought so many years ago.

the cemetary is like being on u.s. soil.
it is a beautiful place, and pays the highest tribute, i think.

this is our little city of bayeux.
home of the tapestry.
it's very, very cute. the market makes me happy,
and the baguettes every morning.
that is mon cousin michael,
we adventured into random bunkers in fields
and other things in paris.

now this, my friends, is mont st. michel.
it's rather grandoise,
and much more appealing from the outside than in.

it wasn't my favorite,
and that's because all it is is a tourist trap.
there is nothing real about it anymore,
and that breaks my heart.
there are so many other things in france that exist with such integrity.
i feel like most of france doesn't try. at all.
it's just like, bonjour, je sais que je suis beau, pas un probleme...
people just come to france because it's the way it is.
so it's annoying when things try so hard to lure in tourists.
because there's a thousand other places that are whole and beautiful and honest.

 another note,
we drove around in tiny little cars everyday, and had to listen to the radio.
and all there is on the radio is american music.
bruno mars? lady gaga? avril lavigne?
i heard way more of them in france than i do in utah.
it was so funny to me, but also quite disappointing, as i hoped to be exposed to more french music.
even the street performers play classic english songs.
like the beatles or elvis.
the main french song you'd hear on the street is la vie en rose.
which i love an immense amount.
i bought a cd of one hundred retro french songs.
think of the equivalent of frank and ella in french.
yeah, it's awesome.

i think i'll leave it at that for today.
and we still haven't even gone to paris...
geez guys.
this is going to take a lot of posts.
til then, any feedback? what do you want to hear about the most?


Wednesday, June 1, 2011

i noticed this about humanity.

when we lose somebody,
we try to find someone else to take their place.

more often than not, this new person is nothing like the first one.
they are their own unique and special, but we don't see it.
we want what we lost.
we still manage to tie the same strings to them,
when they deserve their own strings.

we somehow manage to transfer all the love and emotion tied to the first person to the second,
because the second is here,
and it fills the hole.

well, i noticed that when the first returns,
we realize that the second was really nothing like the first at all.
and maybe they deserve love and emotion,
but you don't feel it for them any longer.

because they couldn't fill that hole exactly.
they weren't the same shape.

the first person looks like your heart.
and the replacement probably looks like something else lovely,
like music or a cup of cider.
but they don't look like your heart,
and that's what matters.

the hole got filled again.
and you are filled again.
and your love feels big again.
you feel like you again.

perhaps, beneath your iron fist and velvet glove,
there's really only tangled heartstrings.

all you know is that it feels good to be listened to,
and understood
in facial expressions
and in silence.

i noticed that about humanity.
or maybe it's just me.