Thursday, January 22, 2015

And Time Passes.. Thoughts on a Thursday

I am a person of great introspection. More so than most. It's a great combination of girl, writer, and soul searcher with a side of OCD.  I'm overly critical of myself, and am aware of my flaws, all of them, even the ones you think I might not be - I am. Trust me. 
There are moments when you look back and think of where you were and where you are. 
Sometimes these moments happen when you experience great joy. Sometimes great heartache. Sometimes nothing at all.  
Tonight I had an experience that I wouldn't wish on anyone. And it gave me one of those moments. Where I thought of where I was years ago, and, I thought of where I was not too far away from right now. 

This is one of them. Those moments I thought of. 
The photo below, was taken in 2009. 



It was of a girl who was open, happy.
Who had daydreams of babies, and playdates, and baking every Sunday. Who made up lyrics to every song that came on the radio, and sang louder than the volume could be cranked. A girl who never blushed and almost always felt like she belonged.   
She dreamed of Sundays and writing, and trips every June. And being in photoshoots like this one.  
She spent her weekends doing yardwork, flying kites, helping (literally) everyone she knew, and the world felt like a ladder that only went up.
A girl who was an academic, a reader, a partner, and knew exactly where life was headed.  
It included ten fingers, intertwined, and at least thirty toes. 
This is a photo of a girl who had never had her heart truly broken. 
Who took blame that was never hers. 
Who was never truly honest. 
Who had never truly lived.
Because back then, everything had to be wrapped up in a perfect package. Where you said the right things, and you were the person that everyone wanted you to be. It was lovely, and it WAS me.
And at the same time it wasn't.  

And then, time passes. 







Years in fact. 







The photo below was taken yesterday. 2015.


This photo. Is of a girl who doesn't love so easily anymore, but she has lived. 
It's a girl who has spent Valentine's in Paris. Owned chickens. Stayed up late, and stayed out even later. Drove cars to Vegas with the roof cut off, and ran through the mountains barefoot at night. 
Who has friends in 12 countries, a passport filled with stamps, and a smile that's not as open as it once was. This is a girl who has known death, grief, and the reckless abandon of 2 am's in cities you may not have heard of. Who's danced around fires in the woods, cried at funerals, has a signature drink, and a record for blowing car speakers. 
A girl who has known heartbreak, betrayal, bad friends, and amazing ones too. 
A girl who has loved, and felt, and adventured. 
A girl who can't quite remember to take the space out of the text bar on Snapchat.



And then, time passes.




Years in fact. 




And I don't know where the next six years will take me. 
But I can't regret the ones I just had. 
I am more me, than ever, and I don't think there are many that can say that. 
I feel blessed not to be a "Stepford", with two faces to show the world. 


Maybe in six years, I'll have ten fingers intertwined. 
And maybe they'll be five of mine and someone else's. 
Maybe I'll be the girl who has spent a year in Spain, and a lifetime everywhere else. 
I just hope that whoever she is, this girl in six years, I hope she remembers two things. 

Things end for a reason, let them. 

and 

Before posting lyrics on social media, think to yourself is it worth it? Let me work it. I put my thang down flip it and reverse it. 



XOXO, 

Amy Ruth

Monday, January 19, 2015

Because, New York in the Fall


I spend my free time traveling. 
Running toward the things that I can see greatness in. Often I see similarities in places I’ve been, to the same streets and shops I see on the corners where I live. 
I feel like I’m home when I travel. 
And that I find a bit more of myself with every place I go.

This trip was to The Big Apple.

I have always wanted to see New York City in the fall. And so I did. And it didn’t disappoint.



There are horse drawn carriages scattered about the entrances to Central Park. I love looking at them more than I love riding in them, but the romance of it isn't lost on me. And neither is the charm of the drivers. There's just something about a New Yorker smirk that just makes you feel good, 



What most people, who haven't been, don't know about Central Park, is the enormous amount of walking trails there are. Everyone knows about the great lawn, the bike lanes, the hot dog stands.... but it's the giant black rocks tucked away in the trees, and the walking trails that wind through the park, some of them paved, some of them dirt, that I am drawn to. I spent hours this day in October, walking those trails, people watching, paying attention to the details that I had missed on my first trip to NYC a few years ago. There were few things more exciting to me than this moment, where I had all of these golden leaves, crunching under my feet as I hunted down the places I wanted to explore. 



Again, Central Park. You could take hundreds of photos of this place and never guess it was all the same place. The colors were so vivid. Splashes of green and the beginnings of fall. It was everything that I had hoped it would be. There are so many gazebos and pockets meant for exploring. There was a young couple taking their bridal photos right before I had this shot snapped of me. I remember the looks on their faces, he was so nervous! It was a fun and charming memory at this little spot. The red leaves on this gazebo alone made Central Park worth the visit. If you ever have a reason to plan a trip to New York, always choose the fall. At the very very end of October. I promise you won't regret it. 



This tree is on the edges of The Cloisters - a few subway stops up from the park, and a place that's been on my must see list for a few years now, and I've been so excited to go back. An amazing area, with a medieval building made just for a princess. It's walled with stone, and by the time I got to the top from the street level I was breathless. There's a view of the city behind this tree, and it was this moment, not the structure, that I wanted to remember. There are times when I travel, that the thoughts I think are so poignant that they outweigh the impermanence of where my feet stand. This was, happily, one of those moments. 


This is a part of the park in the sky, it's called The Highline, and it's a walking park that's built a few stories up. It stretches along the fronts and backs of the tall buildings and the path, along with the river that runs alongside it, goes on forever. There's seating areas, cafes, and a million perfect benches to stop and rest your feet. It's incredibly picturesque, and urban. 



This is another shot along The Highline,
The landscaping is a lovely mix of plants and bricks, a mishmash of industrial and nature that I adored. Isn't the brickwork amazing? I've been  trying to figure out a way to put a brick wall somewhere in my house where it's actually cohesive, just based on my love of the walls I love all over this city. Silly, I know. 


The view of New York from atop Highline. 
Isn't it great? 
I love how busy everything feels. How much purpose the entire city seems to bubble over with. 
I stood here and picked a few people out, imagining what they were heading to, what kind of life waited for them at the end of their 3 pm walk. 
Isn't it funny, how we are all on the same earth, and our experiences are vastly different? 

I remember how lucky I felt in this moment. 


Everything about this photo, I am in love with. 
Look at the details, the textures, the expressions, 
The window at the top with the two blackened squares, the wire lines supporting the building's overhang, and the trees in the distance. 
Sometimes I stood there, like a jerk I might add, in the middle of a sidewalk, just to see these details. 



I will never love the subway. I've always been a bit directionally challenged. And I've yet to have a trip where I haven't had to get on and off a few extra times. I end up going the wrong direction, take the wrong train entirely, or..... sometimes I don't even know what I've done wrong. But I always get lost at least once, or five, times. 




Big cities like this are made for small town girls like me. Bent on running from everything they know, only to finish with their adventure, relieved to be returning home. 



Anyone who knows me, knows I would choose gothic or medieval architecture over anything else. But the metal and stark lines mixed with the old brick, new concrete, the trees, it just GETS ME. This city, like any big city, is a glorious mishmash over new and old. Where nothing seems to fit, or go together, and that's what makes it so perfect. 



My decision to go back here, came from something I've been telling myself, for a while now.... 
"You know all those things you want to do? You should go do them."
Simple. 
But things generally are, simple, and we complicate them with timing, and emotion, excuses, fear. And suddenly a month has passed, and the summer is gone, and by the time the leaves change and come back again, you're in a different place, with the same wishes. 

So I'm doing all of those things, the ones I've been wanting to do. I already have quite a bit under my belt since this NYC trip, and I'm definitely a better person for it. The things I've seen make my heart skitter. This world is a massive and beautiful place - whether I'm home in bed, typing as I am right now, or half way around the globe as I was a few weeks ago. 
And the only reason I need to continue, is any reason at all. 
I mean,... do you need a more logical reason than "well.... because.... New York in the fall?" 

Nope. 


Thursday, January 15, 2015

She Was One of Them






There are women whose words come easily.
Quick wit that falls from red lips
                                      and laughter that spills too fast.
She was one of them.
A hair twister, spun too tight
                                               around mismatched painted nails.
A shot of whisky when just hot chocolate would do.
And she had a way of looking at you
That made you feel like an unlaced shoe,
                                                                    and the world was a bit off balance.
The kind of woman you wanted to catch in a hug,
                                                   just so you could feel like you had her.
And maybe you did.
                 For a moment or two.
Like the sparks in the trail of a comet.

                -Amy Ruth

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Thoughts on a Thursday

It’s that big breath of cold when I open the door that shocks me. It wasn't the crash. It’s never the crash. Or the heavy green truck that shoved my car across three lanes and pressed me softly into the trees.
 
I remember, and it wasn't those things. 
 
The air inside took pause, and my hair swirled up in the air around my head. Like a mermaid’s under water. In the seconds it took me to be slammed and spun, I saw things. The way the dust motes sparkled in the light and the faint lines on the pads of my fingertips as they passed my face.
When the windshield crunched and the pines flew through, I saw the spiderwebbed cracks snake toward the edges. And a lifetime passed when my ribs met the airbag and the seatbelt stripped skin from my neck. But it wasn't those things.
 
It’s the big breath of cold when I open the door that shocks me. My legs give as my feet touch the pavement. Bits of gravel and ice press my knees as my hand slips from the door.
 
This is the way life is supposed to happen. When you've reached the pinnacle.
When you have everything you ever wanted.
 
It’s supposed to shock you. To make you remember who you are, what you are. Utterly human. 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

It's the Concept

I went on a date last week. Was it the 3rd "official" date? The 5th? I don't recall. 
It was far more dates than I should have gone on. 


You see. I've decided that I'm not the biggest fan of dating.
I don't like the chase like other girls. The false flattery. 
And I certainly I don't like the expectation - either one:

the one where you fall madly in love with one another after two cups of coffee and talk everyday after
or the one where a movie means a make out and a meal means I should be swooning

I could say a lot about dating. 
I could say a lot about guys.

I'm a writer, so really, I could say a lot, about a lot of things. 

But what I really want to say, and the reason I write this. 
Is because, when you read this, boy who I won't call out by name, because you already know who you are….. I thought you might want to know a few things. 2 to be exact.


1 - You don't seem to understand that kindness, chivalry, friendship, intelligent conversation, warm-hearted humor, and fun…. 
each of these things 
are far more important than looks. 


2- The Seahawks really are a shitty football team. 

(The sad part is…. item #2 is going to make you far more upset than #1, and I consider that nothing short of a tragedy). 

But honestly. 

All you really need to know is the following:


My name and number, as far as your concerned is as follows:

"Ain't Gonna Happen"

(And I really hope you read that in a high-pitched ebonics accent, because that's how I wrote it). 

Xoxo,

Amy Ruth

Monday, October 6, 2014

Changes in the Trees


Fall reminds me of the vast impermanence in life. How things change, so quickly, for each of us. When the green leaches from the leaves, and spills splotches of reds and gold in its place. Change is hard. It’s hard to watch it go. To watch the greens of people leave, so slowly at first, and then quickly in a rush of color and brittleness. Everything gets fragile in the fall, the rushes of heat that slink to cold nights that somehow seem chillier than the dead of winter. Because we’re, all of us, used to the warmth of the sun that sinks in our bones. Used to the big smiles, inside jokes, and carefree living of the summer. Summer is simpler. It holds these big promises of heavy boned happiness and heat. 







Autumn holds a special place in my heart. This is the fourth year, that for me, everything gets a little more complicated. I wrote a few years ago, that everything got a little more interesting in the fall. As if my life was synchronous with the change of seasons. Because this time of year, things always change for me too. The color leaches. It gets replaced. And maybe I feel a little more fragile too.
This year is a little different for me. I’m intentionally changing things. Deciding to be my own catalyst. And to be frank, maybe I’m fucking things up a little. But I like it. The shake up. The boldness. The recklessness. It’s freeing. 




So I go places like this. Where the change is glaring. The leaves are this vibrant burst of color that gives me the feel good chills. Things happen whether you want them to or not. And sometimes it hurts.
But I just remind myself, that the changes in people, are circumstantial. And forced upon them just as much as the change of the seasons is forced on the trees. I tell myself that sometimes people can’t help becoming bitter, because life is hard. And there’s bits of others that are every bit as fragile as the fragile bits in me, even if they come across calloused. I need to remember that. When I see these changes that feel like the pierce of too bright sunlight. 
There are situations that are catalysts, which cause people to change, to feel, to hurt, to react. 
And there are people that are catalysts, that cause change, that choose feelings, and understand that everyone is just doing their best.
Even if their best makes them an asshole :). 


As Fitzgerald said, "Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall." 
And I'm doing that. Again. And I kind of like it.   



Sunday, August 10, 2014

Today

This is what I did today. Adventured in the woods. And saw an incredible amount of butterflies. I read once that they are a sign of transformation, change, and progressive growth. Clearly all signs point to yes for those concepts in my current life. I feel lucky today. Happy. And think that this spur of the moment adventure couldn't have been a better decision. An afternoon in the sunshine has been too few and far between for me lately and I think my heart needed a little recharge.