In the world I would have to say it's a toss up between 9/11 and when Barack Obama was elected President. 9/11 stands out to me because the world pretty much changed for everyone in the world that day. I remeber exactly where I was that day too.. I was in my sophomore year at Souhegan and it was at 10 minute break in line at the school store getting a chocolae chip muffin. Everyone was called in their advisories to watch the Twin Towers burning on TV. When Obama got elected president I had never felt so relived because ever since 9/11 things in our country have been so messed up. I saw a story on the news the other day that people in the nation are getting frusturated with him because of the economy not getting back in fine working staute the way it should. While I am one of the people who is frustuated about hte lack of good jobs out there I have full faith that Obama will get things back to normal the way things were before the economy went sour in fall 2008.
In my life a few things in the past couple years have defined my life. MY senior project at SHS, graduating from College and Project Search.
Off hand I'd say meeting Patch. So much altered my life since then. Like my career desires changed, my purpose in life changed, I began to see dogs in a whole new way, I devoted my life to working with him and am amazed at how far we have come. Everything happens for a reason and there is a reason I volunteered when I did at the shelter and his name is Patch
This has been sitting on my computer for a long time. I finally found the energy to relieve my relationship with Steve again, and finally got it all written out. For your enjoyment and information.
Honestly, as strange as it may seem, even for me, I have to say the defining moment of my last ten years was my break up with Steve. If you're going to be a stickler for detail, that's more of an event. If we're looking for more of a snapshot, I would say when he hit me, but it all boils down to the same thing.
For those of you (because I have so many readers, I know) who are unfamiliar with the whole mess, I'll summarize: We started dating at the beginning of junior year for several reasons. 1) I wanted a boyfriend, damnit. 2) He was the first guy I'd ever really made out with. 3) I liked him and liked talking to him. Maybe not as much as I should have, but desperation was an element. The first year was pretty smooth sailing. We were romantic and cute and happy. Sometimes we'd get into little tifs, but nothing really bad. It was great. Everything I'd wanted from a romance. I ignored that little part of me that said that he wasn't the one. How was I supposed to know? I mean, how do you know when you love someone? Anyway, I did have strong positive feelings for it, so it was easy to continue the relationship. Into the second year, I really started to get annoyed with little things he'd do, always bringing up politics and religion to argue about, boasting about his swimming talents. That is, in groups. I'd want to bring him along when I'd hang out with my friends, but he'd act like such a dick that I'd just wish that he would shut the hell up. Alone was different. Alone he was self-conscious and overly-emotional. Every other conversation was that he was afraid I'd leave him or find someone better, he wasn't smart enough, good looking enough, on and on. Once in a while it's fine to fish for a compliment. Everyone does it. But ALL the TIME. God, trust, it gets old. It got worse the summer before I went to school. He was staying at MCC, and every day was a fight about me changing or finding someone new or some other bullshit that I would end up getting pissed about because it felt like he didn't trust me and my love for him and he would end up sobbing because he was afraid and I was angry. That's when I first started thinking about breaking up, but 1) I didn't want him to be right and 2) I thought it might just be a rough patch, and I wanted to give it time to let us work through it. I didn't want to throw away to years of my life over what might be okay as soon as he saw that I wasn't going to fulfill all of his fear. Well. I went up to school and he started to pull harder, not wanting to lose me, and I, feeling suffocated and distrusted, pulled away. There is no surer way to kill a relationship than the fear that it is ending. In all of this mess and tumult, we ended up taking a break in October. I had every intention of breaking up with him after said break, barring any large change or surge of emotion. The main reason for a break rather than a straight up split was that I didn't want to break up after two years over the phone. We agreed that during this break we could do whatever or whoever we wanted. At least, I agreed. I think Steve said the words, but I don't think that he meant it. The next day I was feeling shitty and confused, and I was sitting down at dinner alone pretending to study. That was probably the only window of time that this would have worked. A guy who lived on my floor approached me and complimented me and told me he wanted to fool around. I told him not now, but to talk to me that night. At the time it was exciting and a little scary, and I was ready to exercise my new freedom. It was a bit of a test. If this killed me, I'd know I still loved Steve with all of my heart. I'm not saying I never did; I'm saying that my feelings had changed spurred on by our recent behavior. I did what this guy and I discussed, and I didn't feel guilty. I knew then that it was over between Steve and myself. When he came up I told him without telling him how I knew. However, while I was out of the room, he read my diary.
That's the background and part and my defining event, but this is the particular snapshot in time:
I cam back into the room to see Steve pissed talking to my roommate. I was nothing but confused. He turned to me and said, "I know." Not sure of what he meant, I kept my mouth shut. He said, "I know, but I want you to tell me." Seeing that I was fucked, I lead him into my room. I turned around from closing the door to see him scream at me, "I know you fucked Seth, you whore!" I was too shocked to react to what happened next. He raised his hand and slapped me so hard my ears rang, and I stood dazed for a moment before crumpling to the floor. I was sure he was going to hit me again and again, but my roommates were home. One pulled me out while the other leapt over me to scream at Steve. The rest of the day was a mess of tears and destruction of almost everything that was his or reminded me of him.
The following months were hard. It's a real challenge to just cut someone who was such a huge part of your life out just like that. We started talking again. At first it was fighting, really. I wanted to know why and how he could have done what he did and he wanted to know the same of me. Somehow we got back to talking normally, though much less often, and it was even easy sometimes to remember that had happened. Still, he was jealous and mean and controlling. Every time I'd try to withdraw from him, he'd threaten suicide. I can't deal with that; he knew that; it worked like a charm. Finally though, after months, I stopped talking to him. He'd message me and I'd respond most of the time, but it's be a short answer. One night after ignoring him for weeks, he called me up while I was drunk. I was finally ready to be done with it. I'd come to accept myself and realized that I had people that were there for me and would back me up and cared about me. I could finally handle ending this and not caring about him. I handed my phone off to Dante who yelled at Steve to stay away from me and leave me alone. Steve asked to talk to me, and I allowed it for a few seconds, but he started yelling at me, and I started crying and gave the phone back to Dante. He finally handed it off to Alex who calmed Steve down and sent him on his way.
At least, that's what I thought. Just as I'm getting my shit together, Steve Skypes me out of nowhere. I won't describe this because I recently covered in in another blog. Basically it served to remind me why I don't miss him and why I broke up with him in the first place.
Without all of this pain and all of the tears, I wouldn't be who I am today. As much as it hurt and as difficult as it is now to form trusting, meaningful relationships (with a shout out to Mike for reinforcing that) I don't regret any of it. The two years we had together were fine, but when it ended, it was time to end. And out of all of that hurt and broken-heartedness came a whole lot of good. A year ago, I wasn't nearly as confident about my body, my clothes, my hair, my make-up, my speech, my socialization, etc. I can't imagine going back to what I was like then. I don't miss it. I'm glad that I grew from that experience, even if it hurt beyond belief for a long time. I grew and became so much more comfortable and satisfied with myself.
So thank you for being such a jerk, Steve. Without you, I wouldn't be the strong, satisfied woman I am today.
In the world, it would have to be 9/11. And definitely not a positive defining moment.
In my own life, it had to be the day I came out to my Dad and stepmom. Very liberating.
Defining moment... I suppose it would be the turning point in my life. There was a time, about six months of time, where I was the most depressed I've ever been. I was 17 years old. My best friends little sister died and she changed almost completely, so it was like I lost her too, my grandmother died, and my favorite teacher died. Topping on the cake was that a family pet died too. So much death in such a short time put a lot of stress on me, and I ended up having nightmares about some troublesome times in the past. I'd wake up in a dream thinking it was reality, wake up in reality thinking it was a dream. I went months not knowing if I was awake or asleep and being afraid of being asleep because of the nightmares that came with it. But reality wasn't much better either. My mother was stressed. For the first time in my life we got into fights, and they ended up being physical. I ran away from home. I stayed at friends houses. I wandered around the city completely lost and wondered what to do, not seeing any point to leave the place I was in...
The last dream I remember distinctly. I was alone on a dark hill, there was an oak tree behind me. It was in shadow. The leaves shifted and shook with gold outlining them. In the distance there were boiling bruised clouds, thunder, lightning. I was just sitting under the tree and crying when a shadowed man with wings came up to me. He reached out a hand and pulled me into a hug and said, "I will always be here for you." That's it. Nothing else. But it was the most comforting thing to be said to me in a while.
When I woke up I knew I'd been crying, but I felt like I'd been born again. Things were still bad, but they were able to be dealt with. I wasn't dying anymore, I was going to struggle back. It was at that point that my life turned around and I started climbing out of the hole I'd been in.
That was the moment that I knew I could conquer anything. I still have trouble with it. Sometimes I get depressed... but I know that if I can survive that point in time, I can survive anything. That was a time for building strength out of loneliness and patience out of struggle. I believe that's one very big defining moment, and it came in a dream. Funny how those things work, eh?
I don't know. This will probably come off negative, but it's the first thing that popped into my head. I think the day my oldest sister found my notebook. This particular notebook had my biggest secrets in it. Things that I've done, thought, and so on, and i did not expect anyone to see it. It was probably one of the worst few hours of my life, and i sometimes wonder where would i be if she hadn't found it. Obviously I'm glad she did find that notebook, even though it was a terrible day. I would never have been able to confess to my family what was going on with me, if that hadn't happened. I don't struggle with it anymore either, i mean. I think about it, when I'm having a really bad day, but. I haven't done it. This probably made no sense to anyone. sorry! but that day was really emotional for me. I realized how much my family really cares for me. I realized that i was being very careless, and that something had to happen. It healed a lot of pain in me too, talking to my family about it. The moment i remember the most is hugging my dad. We were both crying, and my sisters and mother were all crying too. I felt soo ashamed with myself. Honestly, it was probably the best thing that could have happened.
Me playing Chopin's Fantasie Impromptu Op.66, it wasn't perfect, but just being able to play it made a lasting memory for me.
In the past decade, I think my happiest and most memorable day was my wedding day, though was it the most defining? Well, I'm married to the man I love, so I guess so. However, to look at the broader picture, it might have been 9/11/2010, though I was not personally affected by it in the sense that I knew someone who died. It was more of a collective defining moment for this country.