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A final message to my Bean About Town on KSU Owl Radio listeners: May 6, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — DJBean @ 5:21 pm

I’m going to do my best to avoid clichés  in this address. Things like, “as I walk these halls,” and “start a new chapter of life,” will attempt to make their ways in, but I pledge to you my loyalty in battling these eye roll inducing quips to the death. That said, I’ll continue.

It took me nine years from the time I graduated from high school to finish my degree. There are numerous reasons for that from anecdotes to sob stories, but I will spare you those. What I will say is, as unbelievable as it may be, I don’t regret a moment. I have gone through periods of looking back and wishing things had gone differently, but those days are over. My present happy circumstances and my faith in God have brought me to a place where my regret has vanished and in the space it occupied is the realization that I stand today exactly where I’m supposed to be.

I’m 27 years old. I’m married to a wonderful man. My parents love me. I have loyal and caring friends. I have a wealth of life experience tucked away in my memory. I am poised to enter law school in the fall and I am about to be a college graduate.

When all is said and done, it doesn’t get much better than this.

God has brought me here today with the privilege of being able to tell you this with a full and happy heart.

The only bittersweet portion of these days is the inevitable word that must be spoken to the past in parting. I have to say goodbye. I would bring each one of you with me if I could. And I’m sure I’ll take a few trips down memory lane with all of you from time to time, but as the saying goes, “You can never go home again.”

It is true. KSU has been my home since 2002. Just as I have been here to watch it grow into the world-renowned, impressive and competitive university it is, KSU has watched me grow.

I began here as a sad, scared young woman fighting to get a glimpse of her place in the world. I was frightened of everything, most especially my own potential. I knew even then that I was never meant for an easy, simple life blending in with my surroundings. I am meant to stand out. I always have and I probably always will.

Like a faithful friend, or like a loving family, KSU nurtured and supported my growth from that scared girl, to the terribly insecure know-it-all, and finally to the woman you see and hear today. Standing on her own two feet in the face of a world of knowledge and experience I have not and may never know. Confident in the fact that, despite my wonderful KSU education, I still have very much to learn.

And I crave it. I thirst for more experience, more education, more life. KSU has cultivated this thirst in me and more than any critical thoughts I read on some classic author, that is what I will take with me into the future. The greatest gift KSU has given me is the zest for learning and passion for life that each and every one of us probably feels at this moment. For this gift, this invaluable life lesson, I will be eternally grateful. KSU has left its stamp on me forever.

As I move forward through my studies and personal life, I will forever hold KSU, Owl Radio, and all the Bean About Town listeners in my heart. You, all of you have made the hard times more bearable, the great times brighter, and my successes possible. Whenever things would get rough, I knew I could come in here to the studio and talk to my Bean About Town and Owl Radio family and it would make me feel better. It would get me through the day. You all have been a beacon lighting the way in my undergrad career.

Okay. Enough super sappy and sentimental metaphors. My English professors would be disgusted with me and they probably are if they’re listening. Please don’t lower my grades, ok?

All that is left to say is goodbye and thank you. WHat you all have given me cannot possibly be summed up in a flowery speech, an impassioned essay, or even some bad poetry (which I’m known for). Just know that if you ever are in doubt, you have had a profound positive impact on someone’s life. Mine. I truly care for you all and I will keep you in my prayers. Thank you so much for the privilege of speaking with you each week and knowing you better every time. You are loved, my Bean About Town listeners, and you will be sorely missed.

Goodbye and God bless you all.

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Flannery O’Connor and Tennessee Williams: A Match Made in The South May 3, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — DJBean @ 8:32 pm

As I read O’Connor’s stories and did some research into her background, I found striking similarities between her and some of the points made in my previous post concerning Tennessee Williams.

Both were southern writers who studied at The University of Iowa. Both used their literature to illustrate the hypocrisy and destruction of the old southern ideals.

Anyway, Tennessee Williams is not part of the point.

O’Connor’s view of the south, rather southern people, is one that could only be brought to such life by a native southern. I felt like I had met the people in “Revelation” and “Parker’s Back.”

Beginning with “Revelation,” the central character of Ruby Turpin exemplifies the hypocrisy and ignorance many of O’Connor’s “cultured” southern ladies possess. As soon as she enters the waiting room, she begins to judge the people around her. She labels them in her mind in order to make herself feel superior or more comfortable (which is also done in “Everything That Rises Must Converge” ie: The Woman with Protruding Teeth). “The Pleasant Woman,” “The Pleasant Woman’s daughter,” “White Trash Woman,” etcetera. There is no charity in the thoughts of the woman who professes to be Christian. She seems to only care about the appearances of being a Christian, a well-mannered woman, and a good, southern lady. Secondly, the young lady who loses control and attacks Ruby is the only one educating herself, reading a “Human Development” text-book. Perhaps this young lady sees how many steps backward Ruby is taking for womankind and cannot bear the assault on her sex any longer.  Regardless of the reasonings, this incident causes Ruby to believe she is receiving a message from God Himself, or a revelation. You see, she only TRULY looks to God when she’s in some kind of trouble. Otherwise, the word “Christian” is just another label that is self-applied.

Parker of “Parker’s Back” commits the same sin. Parker proclaimed that he was totally indifferent to religion, yet when he collided with the tree, he called upon God for His help. He is also as guilty of focusing on appearance as Ruby. In the same way that Ruby’s vanity lead to her being attacked, Parker’s dreams of another tattoo distract him long enough to crash into a tree, costing him his job. He, as well, wants to use Christian as a label quite literally. His dreams are of a religiously themed tattoo to be placed on the only naked skin left on his body, his back.

O’Connor has an unmatchable grip on southern hypocrisy. She exposes the culture that is supposed to be so friendly, faithful, educated, and refined, for the den of hypocritical, show-boating narcissists it is. Just as Jesus scolded the Pharisees for their deedless preaching, ostentatious and self-serving giving, and delusions of true grandeur, O’Connor scolds the ignorant, self-aggrandizing, two-faced southern people.

 

Blanche of The Old South April 27, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — DJBean @ 2:27 pm

Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire is a work full of extended metaphor and multiple meanings. One of the longest metaphors in the play is that of Blanche symbolizing the world’s progression from the old south to the new.

The south in which Blanche was raised was that of genteel courtesy, elaborate facade, and unmasked bigotry. Blanche’s life on the former DuBois estate, Belle Rive, must have reflected characteristics almost completely in opposition to the atmosphere she finds in New Orleans. The city of Stella’s residence is a lusty one where, if pretense arises, it is cut down quickly. All of a person’s character is exposed while races and classes mix completely. Most importantly, New Orleans freely gives in to its sexual desires, putting to bed the prudent and virginal behavior of the old south. Blanche suffers these changes for the world and as the world.

The first indicator of Blanche’s duel role is the journey she takes. Upon arrival at Stella’s home, she finds a white landlord conversing as an equal with a black woman. When asked if she is lost, she tells them, “They told me to take a street-car named Desire, and then transfer to one called Cemeteries, and ride six blocks and get off at- Elysian Fields!” The names of the streetcars and places are very important in this moment. Blanche arrives from the old south where desire is forbidden. However, she boards the streetcar into her new life. Her next streetcar is Cemeteries, an indicator of the death of her former self, or in the case of the world, the former south. After a six block ride, she arrives at Elysian Fields, which is the Greek mythological name for the afterlife. She begins here anew.

Next, Blanche tells Stella about her troubles back home. Upon explaining to Stella why Belle Rive is lost, she says, “Why, the Grim Reaper had put up his tent on our doorstep!… Stella, Belle Rive was his headquarters! Honey- That’s how it slipped through my fingers. Which one of them left us a fortune?” She goes on to describe the numerous sicknesses, deaths, and subsequent funerals she had to endure. The financial hardships, her inability to provide for the expenses of the estate, all of these events contributed to what she does not share with Stella yet, her degradation into a fallen woman.

Blanche’s struggles in Laurel depict the degrading value of being born into a certain class, something the residents of the old south held very dear. Mobility between classes was nearly impossible until Blanche’s time when her last name could no longer buy her good opinion.

It is upon her move into The Flamingo Hotel that Blanche metaphorically boards the streetcar named Desire. Her insecuritues about her future drive her into the arms of numerous men which leads her to confuse sex with love and protection.

Eventually, when Blanche arrives in New Orleans, she comes directly in contact of the new American success story, Stanley. He, being a child of immigrants and an uneducated ruffian, is able to use the sweat of his brow and not an inherent class to become a success in his field. It is men like these who are the new elite of America, those who are not much more than the embodiment of passion, determination, and lust.

At the end of the play, the defeat of the old south is completed with Stanley’s rape of Blanche. He destroys her facade of innocence and propriety with a single act of unbridled avarice. In effect, Stanley, the harbinger of the new south, devours Blanche, the world that clings to the old.

 

The Sound and The Fury February 14, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — DJBean @ 8:13 pm

Faulkner’s, The Sound and The Fury is perhaps one of the greatest abusers of time in literature, at least, in my limited knowledge of literature. That said, Faulkner’s abuse of time seems to be in retribution for time’s abuse of his characters. I’ll go character by character and illustrate how time is the enemy of each.

Caroline:  As time goes on, Caroline becomes more ineffective as a functioning human being. She delves further into her self-pity and hypochondria. I imagine Caroline rather attractive as a young woman, devastated with the every-day progression of age. She never settled into her role as a mother because of her need to cling to her younger identity. Time and the inevitable personal furthering it brings with its passage is by far the worst force in Caroline’s life.

Quentin- Quentin strikes me as the kind of man who was never able to grasp growing into adulthood. He forever clings to childlike ignorance of worldly issues and the unachieved ideal of a perfectly loving, happy family. He wants to nurture and be nurtured by his sister, Caddy, who becomes in their pubescent bodily chaos both a mother figure and a potential lover for him.  The older he and his family grow, the more real his loss of (rather, never having gained) family, mother, and lover becomes.  Eventually, he is unable to face the passing of one more minute farther away from his dreams.

Benjy-  For Bengy, time does not move laterally. Personally, he is trapped forever in a stagnant childlike mentality. His memories blow by him and seem to be as recent as his current reality.  Time does all the usual bodily damage and provides him none of the clarity or maturity it brings.  He simply has the repeated disappointment of believing he is a child, surrounded by those who love him, and suddenly being ripped back into his elder solitude.

Jason- Time is merely a tool for Jason. With each passing moment he perceives a growth in his power. A true sewer of discord, Jason thrives on the splintered nature of his family and relishes every minute that brings with it more opportunity to manipulate and divide.

Miss Quentin- Time is both cruel and kind to the child. True, time does steal her innocence and wonder, but it also sets her free from her tyrannical and detached keepers.  Time repays its debt to Miss Quentin.

Caddy – Very much like her daughter, time is both a friend and a foe to her. As Caddy grows into adolescence, she becomes more obstinate and attention-starved. Her needs blossom and grow as the simple acknowledgements that would pacify a child no longer quench her thirst. As she has no real male figurehead in her life, she seeks the company and guidance of older men who would seek to use her. With each day that matures her, the need for real intimacy grows within her and the quest to fill that spiritual and emotional hole continues.  Promiscuity at a young age makes her confuse sex with love and she conceives out of wedlock and bears a child. For whatever reason, Caddy is unable to care for the child and hands her over to those who may or may not know better. At this point, time forgives Caddy and attempts to heal her wounds. She finally is able to spread her wings and tackle her life, eventually ending up happily on the arm of a well-to-do Nazi officer (according to the epilogue). While I don’t quite understand how one could be happy married to a Nazi, she seems to be. To each his own, I guess.

Dilsey – I have to confess that I find it very difficult to pinpoint time’s relationship to Dilsey.  At once she seems worn by time, according to her physical description in the fourth section, and strengthened by time’s wearing away of the Compson dynasty. Rather, that strengthening may be evident as a result of comparison to those surrounding her. The Compson name was built on many of the principles that Dilsey singularly holds dear. The decay of the family honor and name seems to leave her standing as the last pillar of goodness associated with the Compsons. Time has no power over her goodness and spirit or her love for the least of God’s creatures.  Dilsey’s principles should live on, thus granting her a kind of immortality; a victory over time.

 

A day which will live in infamy… December 7, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — DJBean @ 3:27 pm

I’m so ashamed that I forgot the significance of today’s date. Lets all pause for a moment and think about the women and men who lost their lives on today’s date in 1941. Lets all try to remember that war is real and that it can happen in our own back yards. I don’t know about you, but I want to be the kid with the biggest stick on the playground so everyone else is so intimidated, war never dares show its head on US soil again.

 

Michelle Obama Style: The Good, The Bad and The Painfully Ugly November 25, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — DJBean @ 3:41 pm

I’ve tried very hard to stay away from Michelle Obama, respecting her position as the First Lady of the United States (a country I love and respect veryvery much).  However, I’ve had enough. One more horridly matched belt and too-small-sweater and I might blow a gasket. SO- Here is my review of Michelle Obama Style in photos, the good, the bad, and the painfully ugly.

The Good- Michelle FINALLY looked like a First Lady at last night's first official state dinner. This Naeem Khan stunner is exactly what the fashion police ordered.

Good- First Lady Obama dressed appropriately in a slate suit and purple blouse while addressing The Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Despite the odd choice to belt this outfit, Obama can rock some yellow and shows off those gorgeously athletic legs.

Obama rocks sunny yellow again, looking cutsie tootsie in Italy. While I have a bit of a problem with how juvenile she looks, the outfit is undeniably adorable.

Never have I EVER said this before about ANYTHING Obama has worn... but I seriously covet this coat.

In a properly fitted argyle sweater, Obama pops in pastel purple. Unfortunately, this wraps up all the "good" pictures. I tried to keep it balanced, but Mrs. Obama made my quest for fairness practically impossible.

Now, onto The Bad:

The bad- First Ladies should know that mixing four shades of black is a fashion no-no. This hurt my eyes. Plus, what's with the turtleneck? Hiding a hickie or something?

I think I saw this skirt on sale for $2.99 at a truck stop once.

Funny... Obama bears a striking resemblance to my grandmother in this picture.... must be the hair...

Looking somewhat Bjork-like, Obama nearly floated away in this almost shapeless and very hurried Jason Woo frock.

Oh no, Mrs. Obama. I think I saw my grandmother wearing this Proenza Schouler mess once.

I couldn't decide if this should go into "The Bad" category or "The Painfully Ugly." Looks like I've got enough "Painfully Ugly" to go around.

Wrapping up "The Bad" are two pics of Michelle Obama borrowing her husband's clothes.

And now, the moment we’ve all been dreading…. The Painfully Ugly.

So let's go ahead and get this Isabel Toledo nightmare out of the way. Why Obama chose the color of newborn poop to wear to her husband's inauguration, I have no idea.

 

Oh... looks like infant poop is a White House favorite...

Since when is it okay to sport seizure inducing combinations of colors? *twitchtwitchtwitch hackhackhack*

Speaking of horrid color combos: Michelle's been raiding Grandma's closet again!!

No, this picture is not from halloween. However, just add a hood and Obama's pulling off the perfect costume for the Nazgul from The Lord of The Rings trilogy! ONE RING TO RULE THEM ALL!!!!

Obama premiers yet another piece from her halloween collection on The Tonight Show. The President will be arriving shortly dressed as Bam Bam.

Exclusively from the Shoes That Should Never Have Happened series:

'Nuff said. Really.

These shoe tragedies paired with a horrid sweater (CAN YOU BELIEVE OUR FIRST LADY IS DRESSING LIKE THIS?!) serve for an excellent segue into our next section.

Now, I’d like to move on to a serious issue facing the United States of America; Michelle Obama’s impressive collection of too-small sweaters.

Is she borrowing her daughters' clothes? Oh, and keep an eye on this hideous belt. You'll see it again.

Too small AND painful to behold.

Too-small sweater on the cover of Oprah Magazine. Houston, we have a belt problem. This circuitous monstrosity will reappear as well.

This is what Obama chose to wear to meet the British Prime Minister and his wife. J.Crew and all its 12-year-old fans called. They'd like their sense of fashion back.

Oh look! Michelle's meeting with her stylists!

In her meeting with Queen Elizabeth of England (one of my all-time favorite people), Obama was off to a good start. However, the too-small sweater strikes again!!

 And to end our foray into the fashion foibles of the First Lady, I’ll  conclude with a very special section:

A TOO-SMALL SWEATER OR ILL-FITTING DRESS SCRUNCHED UP IN A BELT DOES NOT A CUTE OUTFIT MAKE:

This is the LEAST offensive of the beltings.

WHY??? Plus, red and peach?? Oh no... here we go again!! *twitchtwitchtwitch hackhackhack*

I may barf.

This is seriously a WTF moment for me.

It looks like our First Lady of Fashion No-Nos moves between horridly underdressed, laughingly juvenile clothing to unflatteringly matronly eyesores. The gold dress from last night’s state dinner is the only home run I’ve ever seen Mrs. Obama hit on the field of fashion. Someone needs to teach the First Lady about happy mediums (or larges, if that’s what fits)! 

 

Stay tuned to Bean About Town (the blog)! for more snap, snark, and straight-up honesty. 🙂

 

Slaying Dragons: How to Marry Prince Charming When You’re Not a Damsel in Distress November 2, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — DJBean @ 4:54 pm

Like most women, I prayed like hell when I was a little girl for the perfect husband. I got down on my tiny knees at my bedside every night and started my list of requests with, “God bless mommy and daddy and Gary, Matt, Cap, Rich, Mary, Tara, Peter, Savanna, (I’m from an Irish Catholic family. There are a lot of us.) Grandma and Grandpa Shertenlieb, Grandma and PopPop McCahill, and oh… please let me get a boyfriend soon and let me get married to my Prince Charming. Amen.” Prince Charming. Yup. I definitely didn’t know what I was asking for when I mentioned him. I’m sure I pictured an armor-clad triangle with legs astride a noble steed brandishing weapons and vanquishing my enemies- as if I would EVER be the kind of damsel who needed rescuing from a tower. Without a doubt, this is the man I thought I needed, unaware that as an adult, if I couldn’t talk my way out of captivity, I could probably take the dragon down myself. I didn’t realize that I’m not a princess and even if I were, we wouldn’t all click with the same kind of prince. Instead of using all this self-awareness belonging to a now 27-year-old married woman, I begged God for Prince Charming. The funny part is, I got him.
Little did I know at such a young and idealistic age that while I was hoping for the day my prince would come, I should have been praying for the qualities necessary for being a good wife for him. I should have been saying, “God bless everybody I have ever met and please grant me patience, optimism, balance, serenity…” and a whole list of things of which I’ve never held much stock. Prince Charming was going to ride into my life exactly on his cue whether I was ready for him or not. If I had known to pray for my own improvement rather than my own gain, the capture of Prince Charming might have gone a lot smoother for both of us.
As it was, my prince rode in on a princess in shambles during the most embarrassingly self-centered period of her life. I was an atheist beat poet actress who had just dropped out of college to pursue an impressive career in slam poetry, community theatre and escapist behavior. I was deep, man. So, like, right on. Whoa. I gave it all up for my art because material things…. dude… they were for those other more shallow folks. Yea, really. I towed that line as far as the hunger pains took me and then I was begging for a dollar so I could buy a sandwich. Thank God I was able to scare up a few bucks here or there and had parents who never gave up on me, but that’s a different story for a different day.
So here came my unlikely prince; not a triangle in armor on a steed, but a man in a van wearing khaki cargo shorts, sandals, and a way-too-big shirt featuring the (blindingly ornate) migration patterns of sea bass. He was a bit of a shock. Meanwhile, this man happened upon an artsyfartsy, offbeat, ridiculously arrogant coffee shop girl fresh from a goth fashion stage with whom, he now confesses, he fell in love at first sight. Oh, if he had known what he was getting into, he may not have been so quick with his affections.
I put this man through the proverbial ringer. I built him up and broke him down and up and down and up and down with the effectiveness and flair only a histrionic redhead could muster. My man jumped through hoops that only a true Prince Charming could clear and surmounted obstacles that have pained poor mortals tortured by malicious goddesses of old. Granted, malice was never a motivation of mine. I was merely an upside-down girl in her early twenties who had no idea who she was or what she wanted. However, I enjoyed every minute that I held his poor heart in my hand, never thinking for a moment that he might snatch it back from my grip.
After nearly a year of yo-yo dating with no commitment in sight, the day finally came when Prince Charming had enough. He was pursuing a damsel who he didn’t think wanted to be saved, so he was ready to turn his eyes to a more worthy conquest. He picked me up and took me to dinner at what had become Our Place so we could enjoy what he decided, unbeknownst to me, would be our last evening together. I’m tearing up as I write this just thinking about how close I came to losing him forever.
As the dinner progressed, his attitude became more and more sour. He was preparing himself to drop the axe on us. Though, I noticed that he was being short with me in conversation, the real reason for it never crossed my mind. Thankfully, at that moment, we started to talk about dysfunctional marriages; a conversation that culminated in a fateful comment. I said, “Tell you what. If you promise not to cheat on me, I promise not to go crazy.” To which he replied, “We’d have to be in a relationship in order for me to cheat on you.” Thanks to all that is holy, I was inspired to say, “Well… I guess we are, then… if you wanna be.” It was a golden moment. The very evening that my Prince Charming was about to leave me, I tied my favors to his lance. He now tells me that evening was one of the most emotional roller-coaster nights of his life. One second, he was about to tell me he never wanted to see me again, that he couldn’t take any more of my fickle, unwitting abuse. The next moment we were making out in the booth celebrating the newfound commitment that he had craved all along. This is just one example, one of the many moments that showed us that we were meant to be.
Now, four years, four months and one day after the first time he confessed his love for me, I sit writing at our dining room table in our dining room in our condo. I married my Prince Charming who, thank God, is strong enough to have me. However, despite what Disney and Frank Capra would have you believe, the story is far from over. In me, the hero still has many demons to slay.
This may make you want to say, “well, duh,” but stick with me on this. Marriage is a huge adjustment. Its bigger than anything for which all the self-help books and pre-marriage counseling in the world could prepare you. I thought I had a grip on the magnitude of the shift before we tied the knot, but I had no idea. See, the prince and I lived together for a short while before we got married. It was not my ideal situation. I was merely between an ended lease and moving back in with my parents before the wedding. We cohabitated for a short while, not entirely like a married couple (I had my own room), but as close as we wanted it to get before we were husband and wife. I thought this would serve as a great preview of how we would function together. Oh boy, was I wrong!
In the cohabitation situation (wow- that sounds like the name of some 1970’s tv show episode), I was living in HIS house. We weren’t creating a home and a life together. I was piggybacking on the life he had already made. When we got married, we had a whole new start, a whole new set of ground rules and boundaries to set. It was and still is exhausting.
On top of all that, marriage causes a bit of identity crisis. As a princess who has always slain her own dragons, I was all-of-a-sudden having to base my every move on someone else. Before I committed myself to the prince, I was the token single girl. I was the woman who didn’t need a man’s approval to go after what she wanted. I was the constant for all my friends when they went through all their relationship drama. I was the lone wolf. I didn’t need anyone. I was accountable to only myself. Even when I became a fiancée, I always had my eyes on the prize. “I’m going to do whatever I have to do to make my life better and no one’s going to get in my way.” Now, the inner monologue has been forced to undergo a rewrite. Now it says, “I’m going to do whatever I have to do to make our lives better as long as my husband is okay with it.” That’s quite a change. You see, I’m a pretty tough woman. I slay my own dragons and I’ve never been truly okay with authority. I play by the rules solely for the purpose of being able to one day be the one making them. I found the hard way to do things and the easy way yet, my own ends are always my goal… or were. A woman like this who finds herself needing and wanting her Prince Charming to approve is never a comfortable lady. Therefore, she clings to pieces of her former self in order to feel normal.
I quit smoking in May of 2007. It was one of the hardest things I have ever done. I didn’t pick up another cigarette until September of this year, after I was married for over three months. I remember thinking to myself, “nothing in my life feels normal but this. This motion, this taste, this burn in by lungs reminds me of me. It is me.” Of course, smoking was me in 2007 but it was me no longer. It was a stupid decision to begin again such a filthy habit (and I paid for it with a horrible bout with bronchitis- no more smokey-smokey for me), but I needed to regain some equilibrium. Over the course of four months, I was in a spin cycle of power struggles that raged between me, my spouse, and even his mother who, incidentally, tried to decorate our place on her own. Now I know she was just offering her expertise in an effort to be helpful, but as a newborn wife, I saw everything, even an enthusiastically supportive mother-in-law, as a threat to my identity. My husband wants the coffee cup handles to face the left in the cupboard? Mine have always faced right! Crisis! My mother-in-law bought us curtains I don’t like? She must be challenging my sovereignty in my own home! Crisis! My husband wants to play video games or watch sports dramas all the time? I haven’t seen a Jane Austen film in months! Bloody crisis!! I can’t fold my husband’s tee-shirts the way he likes them or darn his socks! Crisis-ola! (To this, I told my husband that I’d get in the darn car, drive to the darn store, and buy him some darn socks.) The point is, I didn’t know where I stood, who I was as a wife, or anything about where my life was going. I was in an utter state of panic.
The good news is, this all gets much easier as the days pass. Eventually, I was able to let go of which way my mug handles faced in the cupboard. I figured out a way to involve my mother-in-law in the decorating without letting her completely take over. I watched Pride and Prejudice while I learned how to fold my husband’s tee-shirts. I still don’t darn socks, but the point is that I figured out how to compromise and build a life with my husband without losing myself in the process. Because of this, I feel like my heart grows each day I spend with Prince Charming. Every moment makes me more capable of truly loving him than I was the moment before. And yes, occasionally I do need help slaying the dragon, but, you know, he is pretty sexy with a sword in his hand.