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Once Should Be Enough

Earlier this year I posted a bucket list on my blog. I had posted it right after my grandpa passed away. You can view it here. Well, it’s been about a month since we buried him, and I have already done some of the things that I had said I would do.

Last week I got my second tattoo. It was rather simple but powerful; it is the infinity symbol with the word faith written in the symbol. Along one side is a cross and on the other side is two birds.

I have a lot of faith in God and what he has done for me. In fact, I think I have more faith than most of the people I know. If there is one thing I have learned, it’s that the amount of times you go to church has absolutely no bearing on the amount of faith you have. I look up at the moon and I can see God. I can see him in the sunsets at the ocean. I see power and mystery; I would much rather praise God in his natural habitat than in a building that people made to worship him in. It seems quite counterproductive to build a building to be “in the presence of God” when God made nature. That is why I had the word faith written into the infinity symbol. The cross also represented God as well as Jesus. Jesus died for me as he did for all of us. It is my belief that we owe it to him to love one another regardless of religion, race or sexual preference. My Jesus was that guy that hung out with lepers and whores and loved them anyway because no one else would (Of course I mean whore in the sense that Mary Magdalene was painted as a whore by certain people. Personally I could care less how many people she slept with). That man died for me, so I owe it to him to try to love everyone. Finally, I got two birds, one to represent Kimmy, who I have written about before on here, and one for my grandpa. Birds represent freedom and peace. They are at peace and they are free. They are always with me and someday I will be flying with them. I know it’s rather simple, but it meant a lot to me. My sister also got her first tattoo with my grandpa’s date of birth and date of death on her back.

A special thanks to Josh Slovinsky of Dark Star Tattoo in Punxsutawney, PA.
A special thanks to Josh Slovinsky of Dark Star Tattoo in Punxsutawney, PA.

The second thing off of my bucket list, which I’m not entirely sure I actually mentioned in the first blog, was to buy another gun. After my initial experience with my Smith & Wesson .38 Special, I realized I was more suited to semi-automatic hand guns than I was suited to revolvers. My boyfriend and I went to Grice Gun Shop in Clearfield, Pa. for their annual gun sale. We initially had went for ammo because Lord knows that since all of these rules have been implemented, ammunition has been scarce. Which, I find to be extremely ironic because crazy ass people are STILL killing people. So guess what? It’s PEOPLE that need help with their mental problems. PEOPLE kill people, not guns. Anyway, I went to the hand gun part of the store, even though I saw a tactical rifle that I really wanted but could not afford on the wall. I walked around the cases when I saw it: the Beretta Px4Storm. It was on sale, and no it’s not a Glock, but Beretta’s are still highly reputable around the world (I mean, come on, they are made in Italy and my moms family is from Italy, so obviously I knew it was well made). I was lucky enough to have a Beretta representative wait on me and hand me the gun. It fit so well in my hand. It was larger, which I liked because I’m not the stereotypical “small-gun” female. In fact it was molded and crafted so well that my boyfriend was like, “Hell, I want to buy this, but I’m not going to.” So I surprised him.

I told the guy to give me a form to fill out for my background check.

My boyfriend was GREEEEEENNN with envy because I wanted it bad enough to purchase it on the spot. I assured him I would let him shoot it, despite him trying to convince me to trade him for his Ruger SR9. I decided to get the 9mm model instead of the .40 cal because I didn’t think I was ready for .40 cal yet. Also, I knew I wanted him to get the Glock in .40 cal because of its good reviews and high reliability.

And within ten minutes I had my full background check complete and headed to the cash register. Which, was surprising to me because the first time I bought a gun, it took them 2.5 hours to get my background check completed. But nonetheless, the people at Grice Gun Shop are the friendliest and they know their stuff; never hesitate to ask them a question.

This Thursday I will be going out to shoot my new purchase and I am extremely excited because I already know I will like it more than the revolver, and I shot well with Kyle’s Ruger. I will probably post a picture of my target when I am finished because I am that excited. I wrote in my last blog how I feel more and more confident that I can take care of and protect myself, and this gun will provide me with such confidence. See, gun owners don’t have to be psycho. In fact, most of the gun owners in the USA are not, but psycho people steal respectable gun owners weapons. I am not planning a mass killing nor do I want to kill myself, I simply want to know that if someone ever tries to steal my purse, rape me or kill me that I have the capability of severely wounding and incapacitating them (Yes. My faith in the human race is so HIGH that I will carry a weapon because I know monsters exist and refuse to be anything less than evil. And that’s a serious issue that needs to be dealt with. Screw gun control. We need people control).

That’s two things: A new tattoo and a new gun. I have many things on my list left to do this year. They say you only live once,

And if you do it right, once should be enough.

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Adventure, America, Beauty, Bucket List, Dating, Death, Dying, Family, God, Ideals, Life Lessons, Loss, Love, Relationships, Self Improvement, Self-Help, Travel, Uncategorized, Women

Go With Your Whole Heart

How many times are we told that time waits for no one? And how many times do we put off things we should do because we think we have more time? It’s easy; everyone thinks they have time and they do not ever use it wisely until something tragic happens.

The year has barely started and I have already had to bury my grandfather. He was a man who I considered to be timeless until I realized that time would inevitably run out. He lived a good, and rather long life. Now, my family and I have to move forward.

If there is one thing certain about life, it’s that it has to move regardless of what tragedies may occur during our time on this planet. That means that it is time to start living. You must live every, single breath of every, single day. You must live with purpose and with fiery passion that way when you die, you have no regrets. You must love with your whole heart, not just part of it.

I have been inspired to make a two-year bucket list. Some things on this list are going to be wild and crazy while others are going to be simple. But nonetheless, I have a life to live. I have a life to live for myself. I may have my better half, and he will be involved in many of these adventures, but I still have to live these things for me.

Go to Hawaii 
My grandparents went to Hawaii and while they were there they met the Pittsburgh Steelers  like Lynn Swann and Franco Harris. I know I won’t get to hang out with celebrities like they did, but I want to see the mountains, waterfalls and beaches.
Get more Tattoos
I’ve always been fascinated by artwork in its various forms. And I have the idea of what I want next, I’m just baffled by the placement I want it.
See Wild Horses on the Beach
I hear it is possible in the northern part of North Carolina to see wild horses on the beach. I have wanted to see them since I saw “Nights In Rodanthe.” It would quite a beautiful sight.
Get a Job in My Field
I have learned so much from bartending at the place my mom owns. But I ultimately do want to find a job in my field. I would love to find one in Florida and I am confident that within these next two years I can make that happen. Until then, I am content slinging beers and mixing drinks.
Take Kyle to Disney World
I have so many memories from my childhood at that place: all with my grandparents. I think it is about time I show him why I love the place so much. Oh, and he has never been there either.
Read Every Book on my Bookshelf
I have many books. In fact when I have my own house I want many shelves to house these books. However, one would be surprised how many of these books I have started and not finished. I need to finish a lot if them, and there is no time like the present to do so.
Make a Difference in the World
I do not particularly care how it happens, but I will be performing one random act of kindness a month at least for the next two years to make the world a better place. It will increase to probably once a week until ultimately I try to do one random act of kindness per day.
Travel Abroad
I’ve only ever traveled to Canada. Other than that I have never been out of the states. That needs to change. I feel a few European countries are calling my name and seeking my visit. I want to see Sicily because it is where my grandpa’s family is from. Italy in general is my goal, but I want to see both places. I want to see the whole continent.
Take Lots of Pictures
I originally got my Nikon D5100 to take pictures of my grandparents. Unfortunately, I did not get to take any of them together  basically because taking something that large as a carry-on on the plane is virtually impossible without paying the baggage fees.  I was hoping I would get to drive down with my boyfriend and drive back with him as well. We were supposed to go this week actually to surprise them, but God had other plans. Thus, it’s only fair that from now on I try my best to capture every moment that I can because I will not ever know which moment will be my last.
Eat One New Food a Month
My grandpa was always trying to get me to eat new foods and most of the time I hated it. Well, now I am going to expand my food palette and try new things.

I know it’s not much, but I want to try to get all of these things accomplished. And if I have any new ideas, I will inevitably be writing about them in future blogs. If anyone has any suggestions, feel free to comment them.

As one of my favorite songs says, “Forget regret or life is yours to miss. No other road. No other way. No day but today.”

Live in the moment. Live every day like it was your last day. Love every love like it will be your last love. Surround yourself with happiness.

Love.

Boldly go. And go with your whole heart.

Beauty, Dating, Death, Dying, Family, God, Ideals, Life Lessons, Loss, Love, Relationships, Self Improvement, Self-Help, Sex, Uncategorized, Women

The Hardest Question

“It’s the unknown we fear when we look upon death and darkness, nothing more.”-Albus Dumbledore.

As I sit writing this, I know that my grandpa is fighting a battle in the Intensive Care Unit in the hospital in Florida, approximately 1100 miles or so away. That means that if God calls him home, the blog I wrote a few days ago about him and my grandma will be one of the single, most precious pieces I have ever written in my entire life. You can read it HERE.  Nestled in his hospital bed, he sleeps and fights, and this could possibly be his last showdown. At his home in Sebring, Fl., his wife lays in the twin sized bed that is in their room, the bed that was soon to be replaced with a king sized bed so they both could sleep beside each other. Out in the living room is a new set of furniture, and an empty space where a chair he purchased a few days ago to aid him in getting up and down will be going. And my grandma, through all of her thoughts, wonders if he will ever get to see or use the things he just purchased. She wonders if he will make it back home so that she can change the bandages on his legs. She wants to be able to cook him dinner and hear him call her “Buddy.”

She wants her husband, and her best friend to come home.

That’s the part that makes me so sad.

I made peace with the fact that he would be dying about four months ago when these rounds of hospital calls began. What I haven’t made peace with is the woman he is leaving behind. And it scares the crap out of me.

My grandparents have been married 57 1/2 years and the dated for two years before they got married. That means that my grandma has been staring at my grandpa’s face every morning for most of her life. She has been making him dinner every night. She has helped him run businesses. She took care of him when he was sick, to the point where he nicknamed her Florence Nightingale. She had my mom and my uncle with him and instituted Sunday dinners. The Sunday dinners are still in effect, except when they are in Florida because we reside in Pennsylvania. Her whole life has essentially been devoted to loving one man and the family she created with him.

And now, she may be on the brink of losing everything.

The hardest question I have had to ask myself throughout this whole ordeal is a simple question: Why do we fall in love when we will ultimately be separated from that person? I fell in love almost two years ago. And I will be perfectly honest and say that the idea of getting married scares me. If he asked, I would say yes. However, I’m not scared of the marriage; I’m scared of him not being there someday. I’m scared of watching him fall apart right before my very eyes. I’m scared that I will devote my whole life to this person and that old age and diseases will separate us anyway.

So why do we do it?

If you believe in soul mates, then you believe that there is someone out there with the other part of your soul. You believe that you must then find that part of your soul and make it one with yours. I believe that my grandparents are soul mates, despite the fact that they have the single most dysfunctional relationship that I have ever seen. They are polar opposites. But, I guess that is what makes them compatible. I also have learned throughout this whole ordeal that everything kids are taught about fairy tale love is mostly inaccurate. Sometimes love isn’t about thinking the other person is dreamy and getting bit by this mystical love bug. Sometimes, love is more than that. If you’re lucky, love is about respect and security.

Maybe we are only meant to have our soul whole for a little while, but I don’t think it’s very fair. I don’t think its fair that my grandma will have to go on with half of her soul missing. This will happen sooner rather than later, but it still is something I haven’t made peace with. I’m scared for her. I’m scared knowing she will have half of her soul in heaven and that she has to carry on alone. I’m not looking forward to when that happens. It makes all superficial relationships you’ve ever had seem rather stupid for crying over.

Here’s my lesson: Your stupid minor relationships won’t break your heart when you break up with that person. You want heartbreak? Date the same person for 60 years and watch them deteriorate. Date someone for 60 years, and then have to carry on without them. That’s heartbreak. Don’t let minor setbacks seem like heartbreak. You will prevail.

I don’t know if it’s going to be easy to let myself continue to be in love forever because it’s scary.

But I will probably do it anyway.

And I can only hope that when the day comes where I have to go on, that I will be able to. And that maybe, just maybe, I will understand this when I die.  Because quite frankly, I’m not sure that being alive is enough to understand the powers at be with this sort of tragedy. Love is hard and complicated.

I just hope when the time comes I can be strong, thankful and understanding.

Love, here’s to you.