Unsolicited Advice

I have spent my entire life labeled as a picky eater–a “phase” that started when I was a child and never ended for me. Going on dates, going to work events, and going to someone’s house for dinner all leave me with a touch of anxiety. Vegetarians, vegans, or those with food allergies know exactly what I’m talking about:

  • Will I like the food being served?
  • Will they have an alternative to the main steak meal?
  • Will I be judged if I just eat the side dish and move my food around my plate to make it look like I had a few bites?
  • Will someone inevitably make a comment, causing me to feel awkward, ashamed, and needing to explain myself?

Being a picky eater isn’t something I am proud of. In fact, if I could change something about myself, that would be high on the list. I would LOVE to eat every single item on a menu, indulge in fruits and vegetables rather than ice cream (lol maybe?), and be an all around healthy eater, but alas, brain chemicals, my upbringing, my genes, etc. have some other plans for me.

Furthermore, I am approaching a point in my life where I don’t feel the need to explain or justify my actions to others, as I am an adult, and newsflash: I can do what I want.

leftshark
#leftshark

But Amy, you should really eat better! Why, thank you! Guess I would have never thought of that myself!

Of course, the occasional jokes and harmless banter here and there don’t bother me, and in fact, it shows me that my friends truly know me and know my humor. It is the preaching that gets to me.

New moms, vegans, vegetarians, and anyone who has ever lived have probably experienced the slight annoyance that comes with unsolicited advice. Most of us out there are highly appreciative that others want to help and offer support, and in fact, we all need it from time to time. On the flip side, most of us are incredibly aware of our short comings and would change them if we could.

To all of the new moms out there: Breastfeed or don’t! Stay at home with the baby or go back to work! Do what is best for you and your family, as no one else knows your full situation or circumstances. And even if they did, it’s none of their business. Those still dating past their mid-twenties: you keep chugging along. Ignore those who tell you its high time to settle down or just find someone. When the time is right, you will. Same to all of the picky eaters–eat what you can and what you want. As my mom always said, to each their own.

I have spent a considerable amount of time trying to work my way through my own challenges, and to those who have supported me along the way, I highly appreciate it. Good support and kindness is underrated and irreplaceable.

I want to offer some tips for giving advice, which we all need reminding of from time to time:

  • Simply ask the person if they would like advice. Sometimes, people just need to rant.
  • Remember, the person has been dealing with their problem much longer than you have witnessed it. Chances are high that they have put a considerable amount of time and effort into reviewing their options and solutions.
  • With that, when offering support, rather than telling someone what to do, preface with, “Have you considered trying XXXXX?”
  • Offer support. Most people who have large issues know how to fix their own problem and what they are looking for is long-term support and encouragement from someone they trust in order for them to actually execute their solutions.
  • If someone opens up to you about a personal problem, they are putting their trust in you. Try not to judge, as easy as it seems. Remember, something that seems easy to you may be hard for another person, but the opposite is also very true.

“We can never judge the lives of others, because each person knows only their own pain and renunciation. It’s one thing to feel that you are on the right path, but it’s another to think that yours is the only path.” -Paulo Coelho


Recommendations:

  • Song: Bob Marley – Judge Not
  • Movie: Crash (an excellent movie on race and differing lives coming together and colliding. A good movie on opening up and learning not to quickly judge)
Advertisements

An Evening with David Sedaris

On Friday evening, I had the pleasure of going to the St. Mary’s College Twain Lecture Series, An Evening with David Sedaris. I went with a few friends, including Sharol, DJ, Maria, and Sean.

image1.JPG
Sedaris Selfie with Sharol!

About twelve years ago, a high school teacher of mine (thank you, Mr. Price!) suggested that I read the book Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris. It instantly became one of my favorites! With autobiographical tales full of self-deprecating humor, who couldn’t relate and wouldn’t love it? I immediately purchased my next Sedaris book, Holidays on Ice. If you have not had a chance to read a David Sedaris book, I would highly suggest it.

David Sedaris’ writing has always sat nicely with me. If you’re feeling great in life, he can always pile on more humor and smiles. If you are having a rough time or feel down, his life adventures seem incredibly relate-able, always showing that even the mundane can be amusing and exciting, and the incredibly weird tales that might leave one feeling ashamed, are in fact, normal.

While photography was not allowed, I can assure you that David looked smoking hot. He’s bringing culottes back (were they ever in?). Them other boys don’t know how to act.

tumblr_nfzah867nq1qhub34o1_500

David talked about his culottes, his love of shopping for weird clothing with his siblings, and gay marriage. He also has been keeping a diary since his early twenties, so he shared a few entries with the audience.

At the end of the night, we had the option of standing in line to meet David and get a book signed. A wonderful co-worker wound up taking my book for the signature, but standing in line that late (9 pm–shout out to be being a grandma!) seemed a little daunting.

Seeing as how Mark Twain is the inspiration for the lecture series, I’ll leave you with a Twain quote on which to reflect:

If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything.

For me, it seemed to fit in perfectly with the Sedaris talk and my life goals: live your life, be yourself, everyone is a little weird, and that’s okay. ❤


Recommendations:

 

We’re all a little crazy.

Most of you reading this already know about me and my life; for those who don’t, here are some basic facts about me. My name is Amy. I’m 29 years old. Here’s my most recent selfie. It only took about 15 or 20 tries.

13006511_870308214353_7149171527121172315_n
#workselfie

I work for a local University. I have a wonderful, large family:

SAMSUNG CSC

I have a supportive network of friends:

I love cats, board games, crafts, being outside, and the occasional glass of moscato. My sister would describe me as a sarcastic, typical younger sister, and a little weird. But the most important thing to know about me is, I’m flawed. Shocked? Me too. And not just flawed as in I have the occasional bad hair day (although that clearly happens, especially with curly hair).

1923893_509247557803_7740_n
I’m Old Greg!

I mean flawed as in I experience emotions, both good and bad. I struggle with anxiety and depression. I’m a perfectionist, I’m often exhausted (shout out to pernicious anemia!), I let down those closest to me, I can be sensitive, and yes, I occasionally often have bad hair days. In fact, we are all flawed, have things with which we are ashamed of, or experience deep insecurities.

I am on a journey to remember that it is completely okay to not have it all down. I am on a journey to remember that while I may not always be the best, I am trying my best, and in the end, that’s all that counts. Feel free to follow me on this journey and to keep in mind that you aren’t alone. Opening up about struggles, while not always easy to do, will wind up making life much easier and more fulfilling ❤