Livin' Beautifully

my life

my life

Octavio Paz, “Concert in the Garden”


It rained.
The hour is an enormous eye.
Inside it, we come and go like reflections.
The river of music
enters my blood.
If I say body, it answers wind.
If I say earth, it answers where?

The world, a double blossom, opens:
sadness of having come,
joy of being here.

I walk lost in my own center.

(submitted by breanna-girl

Unfinished business with Tuscany

I can’t believe I let it slip away from me so fast.

Sometimes I feel as if I held on to it too tight,

It fell right through the cracks of my tiny fingers like sand.

I knew from the moment my anxious, 5’2 body stepped out of that 747, the Tuscan land had already been tattooed on my heart.

This was the place where my body was revived.

My head cleared and mind fresher than ever before.

For the first time in years, I was truly content.

Three months of perfection, and I had blossomed. 

No words can describe the pasta, the wine and the love I had experienced.

The final days came and my heart grew weary, for I did not want to say goodbye to my new found mothers.

With a heavy heart and a glance back at the land that had captured my heart and soul for the last 84 days, I gave Maria a kiss on the cheek and regretfully stepped into the taxi cab.

Salt, is what my face tasted like for the next few hours.

The mascara dripped onto my passport as I opened it for security.

With a deep breath and prayer, I stepped onto the plane back to America.

I have unfinished business with Tuscany.

Yearly Buffalo State fashion show-Styled for AJ’s awesome collection

Yearly Buffalo State fashion show-Styled for AJ’s awesome collection

Today, I saw a kid wearing a shirt that said, “She’s too young for you bro”. I really wanted to punch him in the face. 

I’m an Aquarius who is afraid of Cancer

Sometimes I’m afraid it’s going to come back

What if it still lingers somewhere deep inside my body and comes out to attack

Prayer’s the key, is what they tell me

But looking at this photograph of an eight year old girl in a hospital bed with no hair still scares me

13 years declared cured, but I can’t forget that I almost died

What if it comes back in my breast?

What if it comes back in my ovaries, lungs, kidneys, or colon?

I’m sitting on the uncomfortable, white bed, fidgeting and what not

Anxious isn’t the word to describe the feeling waiting for those results once a year

“Now even though you are off chemo and cured, you still have to come back once a year for the rest of your life” - A phrase which lies heavily beside the scar on my chest.

I tried to donate blood once at a blood drive in high school; they told me I couldn’t,

And I swear that chemo made me permanently pudgy and my hair fried and frizzy

My brain cells stupid and crazy

I can look on the bright side though, the chemo saved me.

“Don’t be stupid Steph, you’re perfectly healthy and right on track”

But I occasionally find myself saying, what if it comes back? 


Why is it that women are best at making excuses to make themselves feel better, yet men make excuses to get out of something they do not want to do? I used to argue with myself all the time about why I was still single.  I would go back and forth with the thought “Maybe God is saving someone really special for me” and “Maybe I just suck at life and am really un-dateable.” From time to time, I would find myself making up excuses for why I never got a text back or why I was ditched that night. I’d say things like, “He was tired from work”. “He was busy with family.” “He fell asleep.” “He was eating dinner.” “His dog died.” But then I  would read a really stupid quote on twitter that made the harsh reality seep into my brain. “If he really cared, he would have done something about it already, no excuses, shadiness or mixed signals.” I realize that he probably did not want to text me back or go on a date with me because, hello- newsflash, he didn’t want to. I have 20 minutes left in my shift and the strange cashier next to me asks if I have any plans for Valentine’s. I proceed to tell her that I have school for 12 hours on Valentine’s Day and I didn’t have time for plans (which is half true, although the real answer is I’m as alone as a girl can be.) That answer isn’t good enough for her. “OH, SO NO BOYFRIEND? YOU’RE SINGLE? DOESN’T IT SUCK? VALENTINE’S DAY IS SO STUPID, JUST A MAN-MADE HOLIDAY IN MY OPINION.” I am so sick of hearing this from single girls. I am sick of being asked why I am single, and mostly, I am so damn sick of grown women making excuses about WHY they are single. Let’s all be real here. If a guy wanted you he would make it happen. I am starting to believe that what they say is true-all the good guys are married, gay or extremely unattainable for average girls like me. I’d like to think that I am above average. I am in decent shape, a hard-worker and I have been told many times by random customers at work, guys and friends that my eyes are stunning. Apparently that is not good enough for guys in this day in age. I listen to this 35 year old woman carry on about how she has a crush on a guy that is 7 years younger than her and she really hopes that he asks her out for Valentine’s Day. “I think he really might, and I am so excited” she says in a really giddy, childish tone. I wanted to scream in her face that tomorrow is one day before Valentine’s. If he didn’t make plans with you by now, THEN HE IS NOT GOING TO! It is finally 10 p.m. and my shift is over. I have one missed call from my best friend. I call her back, not surprised to hear that she needs to vent about a disgusting boy that she has been after for quite a while. She tells me that she drove to his house and demanded to know what his “problem” was. I cringe and make faces with every word she speaks. I was hoping she didn’t actually do this, because that’s what I call making a fool out of yourself. She whines and says that she deserves better. She totally does deserve better. But if she knows she deserves better, why is she chasing this asshole? Why are any of us chasing these clueless assholes? Is that an excuse? Am I just trying to make myself feel better by calling these guys assholes just because they simply do not like me as a person? I will never know, and I’m not going to put in any effort to find out. That was the old me. I would try my hardest to win over a guys’ heart, but it usually resulted in me balling my eyes out while listening to Taylor Swift and eating a whole box of fudge striped cookies. I’m not trying to say that I am more experienced than my friends when it comes to dating and “love”…but Okay, yes I am trying to say that I am more experienced than my friends when it comes to dating and “love”. I am, there’s no doubt about it. Although, I am guilty of doing the same things in the past, I have learned from when I was in my first relationship at age 17. It definitely is not appropriate to waltz into your boyfriends house and scream at him about why he didn’t text you back the night before. What’s even more inappropriate is waltzing into someone’s house who is not even your boyfriend and screaming at him for not being clear on what he wanted. I think we all know what he wanted. And when he couldn’t get it, he was pissed and moved on to the next best whore that was prancing around downtown Buffalo on a Thursday night. If she put out, he probably would stick with her for a while. Or maybe he wouldn’t, maybe he would leave her apartment the next morning and never see her again. We’ll never know. I do know one thing though; this mysterious, asshole-ish generation of so-called “men” is getting old. I guess what’s most important is to stick to doing what you love, be independent and chase after your career goals. Who wants to be tied down by a boring, controlling boyfriend anyway? Was that just another excuse to make myself feel better about my single future ahead or the truth?