Friday, April 13, 2012

Honey Bee

In my Creative Non-Fiction class, we had a small assignment that included us writing about ourselves in third person (try it, it's harder than you think). Once I started writing, it got me thinking about my name.
As I've expressed before, I'm not entirely religious. I claim myself as Agnostic but even that isn't quite fitting. At this point in my life, I'm not religious but I'm against being so. I've been exploring that aspect of my life. Although I'm not quite sure whether I believe in a God as defined by the Bible, I still believe a life is not complete without some aspect of spirituality. So although I don't exactly believe in a "big man upstairs," I do however believe in a higher power of some sort whether that be a God, fate, or even just chance (Like I said, I'm still exploring). Anyway, I don't know what out there causes things to happen, but I believe it all happens for some reason.
I say all this because my CNF assignment got me wondering whether I'm named the way I am because my parents liked the name, or if there was some unconcious reason, my mom was drawn to the name "Melissa."
For those of you who don't know, my full name is Melissa Dawn Nelson. My mom told me she chose this name because it was either Melissa or Michelle and she went with Melissa because it felt right. My middle name is because I was born at the crack of dawn on a sunday morning. Fairly simple reasoning, huh?
"Melissa" is of Greek origin and it translates to "honey bee." According to Greek mythology there was a nymph named Melissa who discovered how to use honey. She was one of the nurses who also took care of baby Zeus, who later in his adult years, transformed her into a beautiful bee. Other myths credit the nymph Melissa as introducing modesty into mankind. Melissa is also the name of the moon goddess who took suffering away from women giving birth (pretty cool huh?).
As interesting as that history is, I used to hate my name.  It's just so common and there's nothing special about it. But the more I studied my name's origin, and related it to the woman I have grown into, the more I was able to find some reassurance and comfort in it.
I have a fear of bees. I downright hate them and I am definitely the girl who runs if a bee flies even a foot nearby. Now I'm gonna go all Writing major on you (just a warning). If you interpret that, it's kinda interesting. My name means honey bee, yet I run from bees. It's almost a metaphor for I've been kinda running away from myself. And when I look at the way the past few years of my life, I find some sense in that interpretation. It's a little freaky how closely it ties into my life.
Then there's my middle name, Dawn. Sunrises are the epitamy of beautiful. But somedays, the sun can easily be concealed by the clouds, hidden behind those dark masses. Kinda depressing. But the same as me. I am shy and I really have a hard time letting my colors show. Somedays I allow myself to be completely shielded by the clouds. I mask myself behind classmates, family, friends and slip into the spaces trying to be unseen. But when I stop peaking out from horizons and allow myself to be fully immensed in my life and who I am, I realize how full of color I am and how bright I really can shine among my peers. This all sounds so cliche and that may make this uncomprehensible but to me, it makes perfect sense.
There is no scientific reason why bees can fly. Their bodies are too heavy for their wings so they shouln't be able to take flight, but they do. And somedays that's how I feel. Like I'm not meant to fly, or in less cliche sounding terms, succeed. But like the bee, I can. And that offers some comfort to this crazy thing I call my life.
I am a 21 year old woman majoring in writing in a little city in southern Indiana. To the world, I'm a nobody. Just a sun forever shrouded in the clouds. But to my mom, or my brother, or my friends, and one day to my future husband and kids, I'm full of color and a sunshine that shouldn't be forced behind dark clouds, or a bad mood. I am full of so much warmth and love and do everything whole heartedly like the nymph who nursed baby Zeus. I may be quiet to a lot of people but when I burst out from that horizon, I'm a whole world of color and possibility and dare I say, beauty. And like the honey bee, I will learn to fly even when everything says I can't or I shouldn't be able to.
Going back to my religious beliefs, or in my case, spiritual, I mentioned I am a firm believer in everything happening for a reason. I was given my name for a reason. My mom said I could have been named Michelle. Michelle, the female version of Michael, translates to "Who is like God." Oddly, my dad's name is Michael, my dad who has lost his way on many accounts. Who I am nothing like. Kinda funny why my mom picked Melissa instead of Michelle at last minute huh?
To alot of people this whole entry will seem really dumb and contrived. But I know there are some who will understand my unorganzized, oddly formed ideals. And just for fun, you should look up the history of your own name. and see if its story fits like mine.
Have a great weekend everyone!
Just for fun because I like this song :)

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Goodbye One Tree Hill

Yes, if you are not a One Tree Hill fan, this is going to seem like the lamest post in the world, but who cares.
Tonight is the last episode EVER of my favorite tv show. Yes, it is just a show. But since I was 13 this show has had such a huge impact on me.
I grew up watching these characters and their struggles and triumphs. And as a writer, it's inspiring that these characters, who started out as words on a computer screen has touched so many lives.
It's crazy how a TV SHOW can have such an impact. I mean it's just a show but then again it's so much more. Just like a book is just a book or a movie is just a movie. A painting is just a painting and a song is just a song. Yet all of these things can touch anyone a certain way.
My teenage years kinda sucked especially with all that was going on with my dad, but an hour once a week, I had an ESCAPE. It was my home away from reality. I could tune out the drunken yelling and angry shouting and get lost in a world where these characters had their own problems with not so perfect parents and not so perfect lives. Yet it showed that, things get better. And they do. Life goes on, people make mistakes, yet it's never too late for second chances. It's never too late to go back and fix things.
I related so much to each character in different ways, especially Peyton. It's freeing to see pieces of yourself on a tv screen and seeing those characters navigate their way to happiness and dreams come true.
Am I being a bit melodramatic? Probably to someone who hasn't watched this show or thinks it's just a lame teen drama. But think of a book, a movie, a song, or anything that has touched your life. It's that same feeling.
I owe a lot to this show. I wouldn't say it made me who I am today like a lot of people are claiming but it helped me survive. It helped me see that there is always a bright light to every dark tunnel. That happiness is attainable when you let go of your fears and just go after what you want. It gave me a new perspective on life when my perspective was pretty dark. From 13 to 21 is a significant gap in my life and I'm glad I had a show like One Tree Hill to grow up with. It definitely is a defining part of my teenage years and the lessons I took from it will stick with me and those characters will always be in the back of my mind. Not because I'm a crazy fan girl, but because some guy sat down and used his words to create something that inspired a whole lot of people.
One day, if I can write something that can inspire people one ounce as much as One Tree Hill has inspired me, I'd call myself pretty successful.


Tuesday, April 3, 2012

My Lifelong Battle

I apologize for this entry being a little heavy. For the the past few days, I've had this really weighing on me. Before that even, this topic has always weighed down on me.
Sometimes in the rush of life, it's easy to forget but it's always there like a dark cloud hanging over my head. I try to be a pretty positive, upbeat person, but like anyone I fall short. And I always will. But unlike a lot of people, I don't bounce back from things like I should. I dwell on them and let them beat down on me. Like anyone I'm not perfect, but instead of realizing that, I hold everyone in my life up to this unnaturally high standards and then compare myself to them. All of my life I have struggled internally with myself about who to be, which is normal. But it's hard to feel good about anything I do when I look in the mirror and don't love the person staring back. It's really been an issue for me in relationships, friendships, and just in my personal perception of who I am.
Last night, I wrote a paper for psychology about the study of happiness and why others are happy while others aren't. One psychologist studied 4 aspects of the question. I won't bore you with all of the psychology mumbo jumbo, but basically happier people are people who hold themselves to their own standards instead of placing themselves up against their peers. I am guilty of ALWAYS comparing myself against the people in my life. And it contributes to how I see myself.
A friend gets engaged, I feel like crap about my love life. A friend gets a better score in a class, I dismiss my whole academic career as sucky. It's a problem and I feel like I'm stuck on this merry-go-round of self-loathing. It's like I intentionally break myself down and blame everyone else for it.
When someone walks out of my life, I blame myself. I sit and nit pick at every little flaw I have that may have drove them away. When someone becomes closer to another friend, I compare myself to that person and bash myself for not being as fun, as smart, as thin, or as talented. When my ex dumped me and married someone else, I went into such a dark place because I compared every little thing about myself to this girl I had never even met. I allowed myself to go into this dark place instead of stepping back, looking at what made me great and moved on. I'll admit, to this day (2 and a half years later), I still find myself looking in the mirror and thinking why her?
It pains me that I've wasted so much time downing myself and looking at everyone else. And it's been a big struggle that I still haven't gained any type of control over. I take EVERYTHING personally, EVERYTHING. And this attitude is taking over my life. I have this image of who I want to be but truth is I hold myself to such high standards that when I make the tiniest mistake, I give the whole thing up and dwell on it.
I'm trying to be as honest with this and mself, as I can. This attitude is really becoming a problem in my life and I struggle everyday with negative thoughts. I put myself so low on the pole that it's no wonder people walk all over me like they do. And it's made me a jealous person, not spiteful, just jealous. And I don't like being that person. I don't like yearning after what someone else has when I have my own life that could be just as great if I took my head out of my ass to see it.
In past entries, I've touched on this before. I've touched on just wanting to be happy. But honestly I'm nver going to be because the standards I hold myself to are so unrealistic. I CAN'T be my sister, or any of my friends, or the girl Steven married, or even just a random passerby. I was given this life because it is what was meant for me and I'm sitting here in this cloud of self-hatred. I'm driving people away. I'm driving myself into deeper problems than I could have ever imagined.
It's tough to realize that my weight has gotten the way it has becuase I don't love myself enough to even try. I think, "oh well, I'm always going to be fat and ugly so why bother?" And it's thoughts like those that are killing me internally.
I'm so trapped inside my own head that I suffocate myself. I don't know how to break free of myself and start appreciating what I have to offer the world. It's so frustrating that I can't just allow myself to let go and be Melissa. This struggle is something I've battled all of my life and yeah, I can sit here and blame the emotional abuse my dad caused me, but I've lived away from that for 3 years now. This is my choice. I have the control over who I want to be and how I want to think but instead of taking hold of the reigns, I let myself fall short of what I could actually be capable. If I spent as much time doing things I loved and letting myself free as I do hating myself, this would be a whole different entry.
21 years and I'm wasting it and that's what kills me. How do you just let go of the pain and the doubt and the standards? How do you stop yourself for holding yourself back when you've been doing it for so long? How do you love the person that you are when you spend so much time hating her?

Monday, April 2, 2012

ABC's of Me

Just thought I'd do this for fun. You should do it too! Make it a blog entry and copy the link to a comment on this post or post it as a comment :)

A- Art- I really enjoy art. Drawing and painting mostly. It's a hobby mostly.
B- Baseball: my favorite sport ever. Definitely a Cardinals fan, born & raised.
C- Cooking: I love it! Especially when I'm doing it for someone else.
D- Dogs are my favorite animals (and Dolphins are a close second)
F- Friends & Family are pretty much my world. I put everyone first before myself (which gets me into trouble) but I love the people in my life even when they walk away or aren't as great.
G- Goofy pretty much decribes me. I'm clumsy and kinda ditzy at times. I think I'm come off as ditzy at least.
H- How I Met Your Mother is my favorite show right now (now that OTH is ending)
I- Italy- I would love, love, love to travel here. This is my dream honeymoon.
J- Jason Aldean is my favorite country singer.
K- Kids are my second passion. If writing doesn't work out, I'll most likely go into pre-school teaching or childcare.
L- Liars are my biggest pet peeve. Honesty is my number one policy. I like people who tell me how it is and don't waste time with games.
M- Mandy Moore: I idolize her tremendously. If I could befriend any celeb, it'd be her.
N- Neat-freak: I can't function is things around me are cluttered or messy.
O- One Tree Hill- my favorite t.v. show and gulity pleasure. Don't judge!
P- Pink-my favorite color!
Q- Quiet: I am a very quiet person until I warm up but once I do, I'm as outgoing as anyone else.
R- Red- I like to wear red a lot because it was my grandma's (now deceased) favorite color on me.
S- St. Louis, Missouri: My hometown and as much as I say I hated it, it has a special place in my heart.
T- Twizzlers are my favorite candy
U- University of Evansville: my college
V- Vehicle- I love ford mustangs, chevy cobalts and trucks.
W- Writing: my major and hopeful career path
X- X-ray- I've only had one and it s when I was six years old for a broken pinky.
Y- Youtube: I have a Youtube channel where I sing. It's kinda unknown since I don't like to share it.
Z- Zoo animals- I love the seals :)