Monday, December 10

Grown-Up Christmas Parties

Since I have graduated college and gotten a job, I have inadvertently moved into the world of .... "adults". So now it is Christmastime. And now there are no more college Christmas parties: no studio parties with goodie bags, no fraternity parties with White Elephant parties where you get a stolen poinsettia from the cafeteria and no dorm parties with making Christmas cookies.

I went to my first "adult" Christmas party tonight. It was for the community choir I sing in. We went to one of the choir members houses and all brought food to share. I took cake balls; a very fun and festive dessert (or I thought). Turns out that was a slightly childish dessert compared to the other contributions. But that doesn't really matter. I was so ready for a Christmas party that it didn't matter too much.

I showed up right at 7 on the dot, punctual as always. There were only like 3 people there... and I didn't really know any of them. So I stood around and tried to chat with them like I did. I hate small talk. I don't really care about the weather too much - I can tell that a cold front went through. I don't follow sports, so "How 'bout them Mavs?" isn't a good starting place. You can only talk about work for so long before you're like, "Wait, am I at work again that I have to think about all the crap I didn't do?". I love talking about religion and politics, but everyone avoids those subjects like the plagues! Then there's music: my field. When everyone is talking about the Beatles, K$sha or the Black Eyed Peas, I'm like, "did you know that Shostakovich composed hidden messages in his music because his country censored him?" That's apparently not something that you bring up in the first five minutes of a conversation....

So I suffered through that. The only good part was when a guy pulled out his guitar and we sang Christmas carols. Somehow after several minutes of that, we ended up in the Beatles...

I excused myself as early as was polite and got home to enjoy so "people-my-own-age" AKA my housemate and her fiancee. Now I'm thinking. Do we get to the point where those lame Christmas parties are actually fun? I mean, do those become the highlight of our week? Do we eagerly await those opportunities?

It seems sad. The Christmas parties I love are so poignant in my mind. The ones where we nearly choked as we stuffed marshmallows in our cheeks to see who could hold the most. When we cried from laughing too hard as we played Apples to Apples. Or the time we were going to go trespassing but ended up at a house stargazing through a high-powered telescope. Maybe the time we tried to go see Christmas lights, got lost and ended up on the docks accidentally peeping into someone's houseboat. Will those moments, those wonderful, touching, heart-stopping moments seem childish to me in 50 years? Will I look back on it and think that I was lame at that time?

I don't think that I want to grow up. I don't want to get to that point where the blase is exciting. I want to hold those special moments in my heart and actively seek new ones. I want to recklessly trespass across the grouchy old man's field to find the perfect stargazing spot. I want to have shopping cart races through Wal-Mart. I want to be told that my friends are being too loud when we play games at the coffee shop. Because, as the overused phrase goes, "Life isn't about the moments you breathe, it's about the moments that take your breath away."

Saturday, November 10

A Dream is a Dream...

I just had the strangest dream I've ever had in my life. Normally I dream silly, funny dreams, but this one is about as serious as it gets. I woke up at 5:45 after the dream and couldn't fall back asleep and now feel compelled to post this. It's a long read but I hope you stick through to the end.

I was in Dubai doing missionary work. Five children, the sons and daughters of a political leader were kidnapped and tortured. Pictures of them began circulating. They were starving, naked, and terrified. Christians began rallying in defense of the children, demanding their freedom. This blossomed into a poverty relief campaign and donations from other countries began pouring in. Soon a Christian revival erupted and hundreds of missionaries came to assist in the soul harvest. Countless people came to Christ.

The government grew afraid of us, paranoid that we would try to take the country by force Slowly, almost imperceptibly, they grew intolerant. It started as a few arrests of key Christian leaders and soon forced the entire revival underground. But still, the fire of Christ swept the country and more and more were saved each day.

One day I was asked to help sort donations that had just come in. As I arrived, I saw someone holding the poster of the five children that started everything. I entered the building and found a long line. I got in the end of the line and waited. As I stood there, I started feeling more and more uneasy (I'm getting the same feeling now, even as I type). The further and further I moved up in the line, the more I was convinced that I was there to die.

I rounded a corner and saw my friend, Jill, sitting against the wall, handing out posters and reminding people to pray for the children. We had shared an apartment during our time working in Dubai. I almost broke down right then, convinced I would never see her again. As I bent down to hug her, I realized that she knew it to.

Finally, I reached a table and a man sitting behind it, marking things off on a clipboard. He pointed to little squares on the table. Each one had a few drops of liquid on it. "Take one," he said, "and follow the line. Don't drink it until you get into the other room."

I did as he said and continued. We filed in silently. The next room we entered was a large reception room filled with round tables. As we started finding places to sit, I saw more and more people that I knew that had come to help with the mission work. I sat down and realized that the liquid on my piece of plastic was poison.

I stood back up and raised my square. "Friends," I began and stopped after I noticed how shaky my voice was. An elderly couple asked me to speak up so they could hear.

"Friends." I started again, stronger this time. "I don't know how much time we have left to together. It seems fitting that we should end our time here on earth in the presence of God. Let us drink together and pray."

We all raised our squares and drank the sticky sweet poison.

We prayed together, thanking God for His mighty hand and great work in the country. We prayed as one until 20 minutes later, we all stood in the presence of the Lord.

Dreams don't normally impress feelings this strong on me. I don't usually think that my dreams have meanings, but I feel like this one might. I'm still on edge from it. Thoughts and comments are welcome.

Monday, October 1

Update Time!

Time for an update!

I have been absent for a while... College is no respecter of hobbies! Thankfully I'm out of college now and can breathe and even take up some extra stuff. So.... I think it's time for an update.

Here is where I stand. I really don't know if anyone reads my blogs or if they do, what they might like to hear. This is where you come in. If you are reading my blog, obviously you are reading my blog (so groundbreaking, isn't it?). That means I want YOUR input. What do you want to read about? My life? (Boring, but ok) Music stuff? (Definitely my forte, haha) Here is one idea I have been toying with. I came up with a great premise/plot for a book and I would like to work on it aaaand I thought if I posted small chunks each day some of you might be interested in reading it and potentially even giving me feedback. Is that something you would be interested in? If not, I'm totally up for posting music stuff or whatever else you want to hear from me.

I look forward to hearing your comments. I realize that I'm in this awkward place right now; I haven't posted in so long no one probably reads this so no one will post but if no one posts then I won't know what to do and so I won't post because no one is reading and so on and on. Quite the conundrum, eh? My way of breaking out of this deadly spiral is to just start posting and hope that it catches on! I hope that works anyway....

So, what are you waiting for? Post away!