Hi.

Welcome to my brain.

let me be barefoot

Yesterday, the day after the big old ice storm in Nebraska, it was 48 degrees. I've had three days off from work and I've spent majority of my time drawing. whether it was for my upcoming shows, finishing up some commissions, or drawing up tattoos for my friends, my three days off were spent hermit crabbing in my room with my sketchbook. So, still working. I'm not complaining, I love that I can do that, but I also hate being inside. Or staying in my apartment I guess. I don't know, I get really bored, and doing the same thing day after day makes me really sad. So yesterday, I was running some errands and I stopped at the Meadowlark to make my super obnoxious hot soy toddy latte. I didn't have much time because I was still working on picking out which of my new drawings I'd make into prints/ finding a way to ship a big book to Tennessee. Which, looking back on it, I'm not so sure why it was so hard for me to find a way to do that. Anyway, I had a short conversation with my co-worker before I made a swift exit to finish doing the things that I had to do yesterday. Which included: making prints, drawing up three tattoos, and sending said package to Tennessee. I haven't gotten around sending the package and I'll tell you why. 

I left the Meadowlark and I was listening to music on my spotify and a song came on that I instantly makes me feel amazing. It's called Messengers by Jared and the Mill (don't worry, I'll include the link). If I were to drive straight from the Meadowlark to my apartment, I wouldn't have time to listen to the entire song, so I decided to go to the park. As I do sometimes. I listened to the song three times and then switched playlists to the one that I never listen to, because it's specifically reserved for when I go to the park. There's a reason I save these songs. That I don't waste them on the playlists I listen to all the time. They're too beautiful to overhear. (the playlist is called "pioneer"--it's a public playlist of mine, listen if you want) As I was listening and driving around the park, I decided to stop and walk for awhile. Because hi it's January and it's 48 degrees. Since it was so nice out, I found it to be the perfect opportunity to take off my shoes. The gravel was cold and wet from all the melting ice, but everything else was being hit by the sun, so it was warm and inviting.   

I walked for awhile, around the tiny body of water and kept my music playing on my phone. As I kept walking, the ground seemed to get colder and colder, but I didn't care. It wasn't too cold for me by any means, but I could hear my dad's voice echoing in my head, telling me that my feet are going to fall off. Or Cameron telling me that just because my feet are strong, it doesn't mean that frostbite doesn't exist. Or Johnny saying, "Put shoes on, dummy." Out of love and concern for me, of course, but echoes nonetheless. The thing is, I hear them when they say those things. Because I know that it's out of love. I hear them. And it resonates with me, but that doesn't mean that I listen to them. I like to think that my pa knows me better than almost anyone, except for my mom maybe. And Ian. My brother knows way too much about me. I also like to think that Cam and Johnny know me very well. So, even when they tell me those things, they know in the back of their heads that I will not put my shoes on. I feel pretty confident with that thought, that they know that about me. 

But yesterday, I just kept thinking, "No one knows me like I know me"--because I know myself very well. I have spent and spend so much time alone, analyzing myself, looking at myself, reflecting on my thoughts and actions, that I know myself better than anyone will ever know me. Which is both good and bad I think. Since I know my brain and I know my heart, I overthink everything. I know how I should feel or how I have felt in the past, and if I'm not feeling or acting the way that I should be, I overthink it all. I think of escape routes from friendships or relationships, I think of ways that I could drive away, all the places I could go, and how I would say goodbye to everyone (usually by not saying goodbye at all). Thinking of all these things, "just in case things keep feeling not right." I'm not sure if that makes sense. 

I guess what I mean to say is that sometimes things don't feel right. I'm not feeling right. And since I know how I'm supposed to feel, I assume that everything I have ever felt on the subject has been wrong. And so I think to myself, "This is not how you are supposed to feel. If you keep feeling this way, drive away and don't tell anyone where you are going." And I even find places to stay and places to go and people that will help me wherever I end up. I know a lot of people and I have a lot of places to stay, not only outside Nebraska, but outside the United States. I am actually insane. Okay. But here's what happens next:

I go to a park. I sit under a tree. I sit next to a pile of snow without my shoes. I listen to Nils Frahm. I close my eyes and I feel everything that is around me. And I breathe. 

And, like they say, it's a whisper, "Be still."

And so I am still and I keep listening and sitting and breathing and I reflect on this moment, just like the rest of my moments and I know even more about myself. I know that I know myself very very very well. But even I don't know me like God knows me. And I am here. And I am present. And my grammar is so bad right now, but I just have a lot of thoughts and I don't really know what I'm trying to say except that I will leave one day. I know that. I know that I am supposed to be somewhere else, but only when God sends me. For now He says, "be still" and so I'm here. I am here learning and absorbing and walking around barefoot. I'm not totally sure what the end goal of this post is. So here's Jared and the Mill. 

grand roadtrip

January 3-8, 2017

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