Monday, October 12, 2015

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

I just finished reading a Yahoo article about a woman in Texas and her family who were killed by her former abuser. My stomach was in knots while I was reading this. It hit too close to home. It could’ve been me.

This woman was, luckily, able to leave her abuser. He was supposed to go to prison for 25+ years but he plead down and served 5. He then was able to purchase a firearm online. He then took the firearm and murdered his ex-wife and her entire family, including his own son.

I just…I can’t.

This woman was able to leave her abuser – which is hard enough, believe me – only for him to find her and kill her. She could have died earlier in the relationship but she got away. She made the difficult and courageous decision to leave her abuser…and it didn’t help.

This man was able to find and purchase a firearm online. On the internet. Now, I know that some of you reading this will be like “It’s not that easy!” And you’re right. It’s isn’t. There’s still a background check and guns still get sent to federal licensed dealer. But how was this man, a known domestic abuser, able to purchase a gun? Did he find a private seller where he didn’t need a background check and just bought met the seller in an alley somewhere?

Being a woman who has been in previous domestic violence situations, it’s really REALLY scary to know this. According to the FBI, between 2003 and 2012, “34% of all women murdered were killed by an intimate partner.”

Huffington Post published an article titled “30 shocking domestic violence statistics that remind us it’s an epidemic.” It lists things like this: Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women; Nearly 5 million women in the US experience physical violence by a partner each year; Every minute, 20 people are victims of intimate partner violence; 18,00 women have been killed in DV disputes since 2003; 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men will be victims of severe violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime; 81% is the percentage of women who are stalked by a current or former male partner who are also physically abused by that partner; and last but not least – women who are victims of DV are 8x more likely to be killed by an intimate partner if there are firearms in the home.

This is unacceptable. The loopholes in gun ownership are unacceptable. The fact that some women have to fear for their lives while in a relationship and after leaving it is unacceptable.

I just can’t get it out of my head that this could have been me. Being a woman who has been in violent relationships, I know how difficult it is to get out. I know how difficult it is to stay away from the abusers. I know how difficult it is to stay safe after you’re out. I wasn’t always so lucky to stay safe afterwards but I’m lucky enough to still be alive.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness month. Please, if you know someone who is in this type of relationship, let them know you are there for them. Look for the signs. Let them know that there is help available. Wear purple to show your support or share your own story. Call on Congress for gun legislation, too. Domestic violence doesn’t discriminate. If you’re reading this and you need help, please seek it. If you just need someone to talk to, I am always available.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Just Erin being Erin again.

Hello, everyone who still reads this ridiculous blog. I’m going to be doing one of those “rant” posts because a lot of things have just been really grinding my gears lately. Also, this post is more than likely going to go off in several different directions. You’ll either follow it or give up.

This first issue doesn’t make me mad but the enemies of the FANTABULOUS news given by the Supreme Court ruling do. There are still people in the year 2015 that think gay people are subhuman, that they don’t deserve the same rights as everyone else. Guess what? THEY DO! These people also came from their mother’s womb, just like you. Just because they have a different sexual preference than you doesn’t mean jack.

Now, I was raised in a pretty churchy household in WV. Mom was raised Protestant, dad was raised southern Baptist. Of course I grew up reading my bible. I was in church every Sunday and Wednesday. I went to church camp every year up until I was 15 then I started counseling there. Am I proud of that? Absolutely not. I had a lot of hate in my heart. I don’t know whether that was at god or if that was because I knew there was no god at that point. One thing I do know is that in the past, I was very mean to others who were different than me because that’s how I was raised. I was taught not to like gay people because it was bad and that those people were going to go to hell. This didn’t necessarily come from my mother. While she did have a few gay friends growing up, she didn’t condone the lifestyle but she didn’t hate those people either. Unfortunately, I think she’s grown out of the former and into the latter.

My best friend is gay. I remember hearing the news that the Supreme Court ruled in favor of marriage equality. I cried and texted him with all caps and seventy different emojis “CONGRATULATIONS, YOU CAN GET MARRIED NOW! I CAN’T WAIT!!!” I kept crying. What a freaking relief. This should never have been an issue but I understand why it was. People are really hateful and I am so sad that I was one of them even if I didn’t understand what “being gay” meant besides “one does not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable.” I understand why some people don’t like the decision from SCOTUS. It’s upsetting, of course, to know that 98% of my family is those people. I can only imagine what would happen should someone if my family find out that I am someone, in terms of a relationship, who doesn’t care what gender someone is or isn’t.

Many of you know the story about my decision to leave the church. It certainly wasn’t easy to do and honestly, I struggle with it sometimes. Do my parents still love me even though they know I’m not a believer anymore? Of course they do. Do they wish I still believed? Absolutely. They think they’ve failed me somehow but it’s quite the opposite. Growing up the way I did taught me to learn to think for myself. I never did that until I was 15. There were so many questions left unanswered and still cannot be answered to this day. I am content with this for the most part. I have learned that all I really need to do is to just live my life. If I happen to learn awesome shit on the way (like when I watch Bill Nye or hear Neil deGrasse Tyson talk), that’s just a bonus.

So now that I’ve gone COMPLETELY off topic, let’s get back to things that make me angry.

People who believe women do not have the right to govern their own bodies: what is wrong with you? There are a million things Republicans could be doing to try and fix things and yet the only thing that bothers them is Planned Parenthood and the fact that sometimes women decide that they don’t want a parasite living inside them. Old, straight, white men just LOVE to try and govern other people’s lives and bodies, especially women’s. It’s kind of gross, really. These men will never ever be able to have a child. They’ll never know the pain a woman has to go through. They think that women just WANT to have abortions. I wouldn’t be surprised if they tried to pass a bill to make every woman who has a miscarriage to be classified as a murderer.

Also: bills to make abortions illegal past 20 weeks even in the case of rape/incest…really? Trying to tell a woman who will either 1) give birth to a dead child or 2) die giving birth to a child that they cannot abort? The Republican Party is nothing but human garbage. Most women do not just decide “hey, I’m totally gonna have unprotected sex and then if I get pregnant, I’m gonna spend all this money to kill a POTENTIAL child.” It just doesn’t work that way. Now before anyone jumps down my throat: yes, some women have had more than one abortion; some women do not care, etc. but that’s not MOST women. Most women struggle with the idea of making a decision to abort a potential child. It’s not an easy thing to do. “How will I support it?” “Will it be healthy?” “Will *I* be healthy?”

There are a ton of arguments for and against abortion (which is maybe an entire other post I’ll do soon) but the main thing is this: a woman’s body is her own. Until a fetus is viable, until it is able to live outside the mother’s womb on its own…it is NOT a child. Republicans want to ban abortions and force women to carry children to term and then what happens? Are the mother and child homeless? Does she put yet another child into the system? See, Republicans only care about “human life” when it’s not actually a human life. Once a child is born, they don’t have to worry about it anymore. It’s disgusting.

It is 2015; Roe v Wade passed in 1973. It has been forty-two damn years since the Supreme Court ruled that the due process clause extends to a woman being able to have an abortion by the third trimester of pregnancy. Why are people STILL caught up on this? Stop it. Just stop it.

Donald Trump is stupid and guns are still an issue.

Okay, next: Tyler, the Creator is some kind of rapper or something that writes really misogynistic lyrics and raps about raping women and also killing women and assaulting/mutilating their corpses. Pretty serial killer-esque right? Apparently he had shows to do in Melbourne, Australia but a feminist group protested this and so his shows were cancelled. He said some really awful things about the woman who is a member of said group. Anyway, I happened to be browsing facebook when I came across a friend who lives in Australia talking about how he can’t wait  for this woman to “get raped and beaten senseless” getting the shows cancelled, trying to be funny about it. I wish I’d taken a screenshot of it but I was so goddamn disgusted that I immediately unfriended him which makes me sad because I’ve known him a long time and he’s been a good friend to me.

Now don’t get me wrong: I’m ALL about free speech. I might not like what you have to say but I’ll always fight for you to be able to say it. However, I personally don’t feel like rape/sexual assault/domestic violence is ever funny. Again, most of you reading this know my story and know how I feel about it so I am not afraid to 1) speak my mind on the subject and 2) tell you to fuck off and never talk to you again. I am not someone who needs trigger warnings for anything but I do realize that some people are not as advanced in their recovery as I am (and even then, I’m hardly what you call “advanced”). Some things still get to me, like depictions of violence/rape in books, movies, or TV shows. I wouldn’t wish the things that have happened to me on my worst enemy. No one should have had to go through that.

Seeing things like that Facebook post though? I felt so many emotions as I read it. I was angry, sad, disappointed in my friend. I didn’t offer an explanation to him before I hit the unfriend button. This is the second time I’ve done that but now I’ve learned my lesson. He says a lot of controversial things. He fat-shames people, hates women who label themselves as feminists, is vehemently anti-theist, and makes a mockery of those who have been hurt before. He was a genuinely good friend to me; always listening to me rant, giving me advice about my relationships, making me laugh. But at some point, I can only see so much of that and that was the last straw. Wishing for a woman to get raped and beaten within an inch of her life? What kind of human being are you when you say those things? I know he isn’t the only one either.

While I’m on the subject, I’ve been looking for a therapist here in Chicago. Before now, I was never really ready to face what happened to me. I was going into a lot of depressive states and I would take my anger out on my loved ones. I was lashing out. It wasn’t anything that they’d done; it was what is hiding underneath. It was then that I realized that I needed to face this head on. I’ve been hurt in more ways than anyone can imagine. I’m not looking for sympathy; I’m just looking to move on. My fiancé recently purchased a book that we are going to be reading together, “Allies in Healing.” It’s an advice book for people whose partners have witnessed sexual trauma. David purchased this book by himself to read and I’ve been so lucky that he is so incredibly supportive.

Anyway…wow. This isn’t even the way I wanted this post to go but oh well. That’s just how I am.

Thursday, April 23, 2015


Hi, everyone. It's been a bit since I've updated here. Sorry about that! 

Since my last post, my fiancé and I have closed the distance. I moved to Chicago from West Virginia on February 22. I think I'm finally adjusting now but it's taken longer than I expected. It'll take a little longer to feel okay every day. 

I've had a couple of bad days here. I never thought I would feel homesick but when you live in one place for so long, a place where your family & friends are, a place with so many's hard. I'm lucky that my fiancé knows how to make me feel better.

I finally got a job that doesn't pay me minimum wage & allows me to do what I went to college for. When I first got here, I was so impatient about finding a job that most of the time, I thought about just giving up. But finally, FINALLY, I was given a chance. After two years of searching relentlessly, I was offered a job with TASC (, if you're interested. 

There's been many days where I've just wanted to pack up and move back home to WV but then I remember why I made the move. There was nothing left for me in WV. I worked 60+ hours a week just to have an empty bank account. I worked so hard for so long and I felt like I was going nowhere fast. 

I'm so lucky that I have a fiancé who helps me through the difficult times. It hasn't always been easy. There's been times I've just wanted to walk out the door and never come back. We haven't always been the best we could to each other but we are working on it. 

Every day is a struggle for me. Since moving, I have more anxiety than I've ever experienced. I've had more depressive days where I never even thought about getting out of bed, let alone being able to do it. There's days where I just want to crawl into a hole and never ever come out. 

I've also never had such great times. We've shared so many laughs and made so many memories just in the short time I've been living here. (Can I just say that I'm extremely happy that I don't have to fly into O'Hare anymore?!) 

Every night when David comes home from work, I get a kiss and a hug and we watch TV or a movie and just bask in each other's presence. He has absolutely no idea that he's what keeps me going in this crazy world. I am forever grateful and thankful that after every curve ball we've been thrown, we knock them out of the park. (Sorry, I think I've been watching too much baseball.) 

But seriously, things haven't always been the best and we know that it won't always be kittens and rainbows. We would be naive to think that there won't be bridges we have to cross or storms we have to weather. The best part about it is knowing that I don't have to go it alone. I'll always have a hand to hold. I have the most wonderful partner, fiancé, and best friend that I could ever ask for...and for that, I am thankful. 

In summation, I am doing just fine for everyone who has been asking. Some days are better than others but I'm hanging in there. Next post will be more interesting. Promise. 

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Gaming as a woman

Hello, friends. I’ve ran out of things to do at work so here I am again.

A couple of weeks ago, I was playing Advanced Warfare with a friend. Everything was going well, I was kicking ass…so I pulled out my sniper class because normally I’m pretty awful with a sniper rifle & I hadn’t used one yet on this particular game. Now usually, if someone is sniping, they’re in one spot not moving around (unless 1. they’ve been found or 2. they’re running around the map quick-scoping). This photo is a message I got after I whooped a whole team’s ass:

Now you may wonder “with a gamertag like YankECowboy, how would they know it’s a girl!?” Because my clan tag is “LADY."  Makes sense, no? So I went like, 25-3 during this match (which is AWESOME by the way). This guy was super pissed because I probably killed him the most out of everyone on his team; he was just really bad all together.

When you’re sniping in a video game (not moving from one spot), or even sitting around with a rifle, you’re known as a “camper.” I’ve never really considered myself a “camper” especially when I have an objective to complete. My style is run and gun. Always has been, probably always will be. (In fact, it’s how I got my nickname “Yankee Cowboy” but that’s another story)

So anyway, there I am lying on top of a high building, picking people off as they jet pack around and use their lame-ass exo abilities. I was on a five-kill streak but was finally spotted so I moved. I died 3 times the whole match and trust me, I felt TERRIBLE after the game was over because I know how much it sucks to be killed by a sniper.

*see photo above* This guy was PISSED. He also sent me a voice message just like, raging all over the place because I was a female. He didn’t even sound like a kid. He sounded like a grown-ass adult. I understand frustration in video games, believe me. I normally get easily frustrated in general but video games are something else. It was incredible to see (and hear) a grown man acting this way over a video game.

Hearing “get back in the kitchen; women don’t play video games; I’ll rape you; I bet you’re ugly (no I'm not)” bullshit all the time is tiresome. Don’t get me wrong, I try not to take it to heart but it's annoying. Luckily for me, I can let it roll off my back. Why are you so mad, bros? Is it because I’m a woman and I’m better at a game than you?

I remember growing up, I had (almost) every console imaginable. I grew up playing video games. I was never bullied or made fun of or told to “go back to the kitchen” when I played. My male and female friends would come over and play all the time. I had dolls and things of the sort, and I did play with them, but my main focus was video games (and also maybe Pokemon but let’s keep that between us).

I’ve even come across rude men on PC gaming. Luckily, they’re much less rude there than they are on other platforms, I’ve found. The instance above isn’t the first one I’ve run into on PSN or in general.  When I game on XBOX, people are filthy and I mean that in every sense. They’re just…vile. I've run across on few on PSN but this guy's been the most adament about telling me to make him a sandwich.

A lot of the men I come across just LOVE to throw around the word “rape.” I mean, sure, it’s just a word…but equating it to playing a video game is a little much, I think. It’s distasteful, really, to say it to anyone of any gender: “You just got raped!” or “get raped, little bitch” (I’ve actually heard that one before…gross). Don’t get me wrong, video games were my first love and I’ve put a lot of time into them over the years, as I still do, but I don’t take them as life-or-death seriously. I don’t feel the need to insult others who are better at a particular game than I am because I’m not a giant douchebag. I’m just like “hey, good game” not “u fckin suck go bak 2 tha kitchen bitch”…

A lot of women play video games these days so here’s my question: what’s the big issue with women in gaming? I never knew that playing video games was strictly for men since I’ve been doing it basically out of the womb. 

What do men have against women in the gaming industry? I understand that the gaming industry is run mostly by men but I don’t understand what the harm is in letting women into it, not only playing but MAKING them? What are they so afraid of? Do we blame this on parents, the people who began the gaming industry for over-sexualizing women in games, or society for gender roles?

I’m genuinely curious. Parents? Maybe. Teach your kid not to be a little twat to people and it might be ok. Society? Probably. Girls play with Barbie dolls, boys play with trucks and guns. The early video game industry? Likely. Over-sexualizing women, putting them in scantily clad clothes and giving them ridiculous measurements; showing women as damsels in distress that need to be saved by men. All of these most likely contribute to the issues we see as a gaming community.

Never in my life growing up did I think “I bet when I get older, guys who play video games are gonna be douchebags.” No. I figured it’d be the same. Everyone would get along, we’d be “good game” after it’s over but it’s not like that. I very rarely ever get praise for playing well as a gamer but always seem to get scolded for being a woman who does well.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Republicans, Jesus, and Chris Kyle

This is going to be a rant. If you don't like those & think you won't like my opinons, you should leave now. I know a lot of you reading this remember be from the good old twitter days where I would rant endlessly about anything and everything. This is going to be one of those posts. You've been warned.

First, I'm just going to get my opinion of Chris Kyle out of the way. From here, this post (hopefully) will flow freely & together.

While I support our veterans and have the utmost respect for what they do, I do not condone war. I understand & respect the struggle that military personnel go through to keep us safe; I realize what their families go through, but that doesn't mean I have to respect WHY they're doing it.

Just about twenty minutes ago, I read an article about how Bill Maher called Chris Kyle a "psychopath Patriot." And I get it, I do. It makes sense with what Chris Kyle has been reported to have said about his tours of war (taken from article above):

     ·   “I hate the damn savages”—talking about the Iraqis—“and I’ve been fighting and I always will.”
        ·   “I love killing bad guys.”
        ·   “Even with the pain, I loved what I was doing.”
         ·   “Maybe war isn’t really fun, but I certainly was enjoying it.”

See, like, that's an issue. Who *likes* killing people? He was “America’s most lethal sniper” and he bragged about it. That’s messed up. If you ask any vet “the question(s)”, you’re most likely only going to get a very uncomfortable silence. The question(s) being "have you killed anyone? How many?" That's just something you don't ask. It's also something that shouldn't be bragged about. Heroes don't brag, do they? And can we talk about something else just real quick? Chris Kyle took a guy to a gun range who had PTSD. A gun range. PTSD. I mean...

Here's what I don't get: most of the people I've seen talking about this movie and about how Chris Kyle was such a hero are republicans. Guess what, friends? Bills over the years to help vets with housing, jobs, health/life insurance have failed. Why? Because republicans have voted against them. Republicans do not love our veterans. They love war & they love money. If they loved and supported our vets...can you guess? That's right. We wouldn't have (near as many) homeless veterans. According to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), it's estimated that 49,933 veterans are homeless on any given night. 

Check out these stats from the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans. It's disgusting. If you don't want to see the link, these are some of the stats: 
12% of the homeless adult population are veterans
20% of the male homeless population are veterans
68% reside in principal cities
32% reside in suburban/rural areas
51% of individual homeless veterans have disabilities
50% have serious mental illness
70% have substance abuse problems
51% are white males, compared to 38% of non-veterans
50% are age 51 or older, compared to 19% non-veterans

Now tell me, dear reader, if the republicans cared so much about our veterans, why would they strike down bills that can help them? $$$. There are serious problems in this country and this is a major one. 

In the article about Bill Maher, he is quoted as saying "And if you’re a Christian — I know this is a Christian country — ‘I hate the damn savages, I don’t give a f*ck what happens to them’ doesn’t seem like a Christian thing to say." 

Time out! First of all, we all know what Bill meant by this. Obviously it isn't a Christian country, only Christians think it is. The only time this country is "Christian" is when it suits some people. It's "Christian" in that people who are prejudice don't want gay people to get married. It's "Christian" in that people who want to police women's bodies say that a fetus is a child. It's "Christian" when a kid comes home from school & tells their parents they were forced to pray. 

Second, "I hate the damn savages, I don't give a f*ck what happens to them" most definitely isn't a "Christian" thing to say. So let's talk about this for a minute. Christians are hypocrites (trust me, I used to be one). How can one, a Christian, follower of CHRIST, be all for the sanctity of life but be the first to flip the switch on the electric chair? How can a follower of Christ say "turn the other cheek" but blast those who've done them wrong? How can a Christian be so violent? How can they have guns in their homes, saying things like "my right to bear arms is a god-given right"? I don't know about everyone else, but I highly doubt God/Jesus/Christ would authorize such violence. 

Right-wing Christians in the country are the first to complain that they're being persecuted. They're the first to say "we're so Christ-like, we love veterans, we want to make abortion illegal." But let me tell you something, RWNJ's, you are nothing like Christ, you do not love our veterans, and you don't want to kill a fetus but don't want to take care of the child once it's born. You would rather see homeless veterans than to pass a bill that "costs too much." You'd rather be able to carry openly and freely than to keep our children safe. You would rather see a child enter the system than to let a woman practice her bodily autonomy. 

You, right-wing will be the downfall of our country. 

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Sex was it for you?

This morning, I ran across an article on Yahoo! titled "13-Year-Olds Push To Change Rape Culture — Starting In Sex Ed Class." Go ahead and read it here, then come back.

Done? Ok, good.

So here's the issue: consent. I was never taught what this was when I was in school. I was taught abstinence education up until maybe 9th grade. I don't know if this was because I lived in West Virginia where (not ironically) there's a lot of teenage pregnancies and kids are taught abstinence education.

Most of you reading this know about my history so I won't go too much into it again. At a young age, I was sexually assaulted. I didn't know what was happening nor did I know that it wasn't my fault that it was happening. Through the years, it kept happening until one time, it was a "full on assault" meaning there was actual vaginal penetration. This is still quite possibly the worst day of my life to date, not to mention something that sent me spiraling into anxiety and a deep depression.

So let's get back to this article. Some parents say that teaching consent in sex ed class is "too much." Why? Why are we so afraid to 1) teach children about their bodies, and 2) teach them about things that can become so prevalent, people think it's becoming normal? Not only would I want my child to be taught this in school, I would expect my partner and I to talk to them and teach them as well.

Why is sex, teaching children about it, and having real conversations about it still taboo? Do you ever wonder why teenage pregnancy is so high? Do you wonder why there are so many cases of rape, especially ones that go unreported? It's because in 2014-2015, we still don't have a sex ed curriculum that helps our children.

The sex education system in America hurts children. If a child is taught abstinence education, what is this telling them? DON'T HAVE SEX EVER UNTIL YOU'RE MARRIED. Ok...but shouldn't we be teaching kids that if they're going to be having sex, they should be careful about it? Kids love to rebel, right? If we teach them to absolutely not do something, is that really going to help?

Why not give kids the resources they need? There's nothing wrong with sex. It's a beautiful thing, it's completely natural, and it's why are we so against it? (To be fair, I don't think young children having sex is "great" but you know what I mean.)

I knew a kid who was home-schooled and her parents taught her their own version of sex ed with lessons from the Bible?. Any guess at what age she had her first child? Fifteen years old.

Abstinence-only sexual education hurts children. Period. Children need to be taught consent. They need to be taught about rape/sexual assault, pregnancy, condoms, barrier methods of all kinds...they need to be prepared. In this day and age, kids are not and we wonder what the issue is.

Saturday, January 10, 2015


I had mentioned on twitter sometime last month that I would try to blog more. Apparently, I lied. But here's a new one I'm busting out today because I have absolutely nothing to do at work. I asked my followers what they'd like to see me write about. There were a few of the same suggestions so that's what I'll talk about today: my long distance relationship.

The day David followed me on twitter was a seemingly unimportant day. His first tweet to me was an answer to a question I had about my xbox. Still fairly unimportant but helpful. We didn't speak at all and I only admired him from afar with his few and sporadic tweets. He added me on xbox live and joined my party during a game of Black Ops 2. The first time I heard him speak, my heart stopped and raced a million miles an hour all at once. It was the sweetest voice I’d ever heard. We had a wonderful evening together, although it happened to be~500 miles away from each other. I’d never connected with someone so quickly and easily. I knew it was the start of something great…and it was. We were talking one day and he asked if he could come and see me. At first I was like ‘whoa, guy, you’re on twitter, how do I even know you’re not a killer?’ Luckily for me, he’s definitely not. Letting him come to see me was the first best decision I’ve made. We had a wonderful time together…and all the times after that. I’ve never felt so happy, so alive.

On August 1, 2014, he asked me to marry him. Of course, I said yes. I’ve never loved anyone so much as I love this man. We’ve had tough times, especially lately. The distance hurts. It often leaves me feeling pessimistic. But you know what? I’ll love this man until the day I die…and then I’m gonna keep loving him. I make it a point to tell him every single day. I don’t have to say it though, he knows. I’m gonna marry him. How could I not? He’s my rock and I am so thankful he is there for me. In my past, I've been put down, beaten, bruised, damn near dead. David does nothing but lift me up, support me, and love me. I couldn’t ask for anything better.

I noticed that a lot of people loved my engagement ring. I also noticed a few that had something to say in regards to how much it cost. I have never been a materialistic person. I don't like to spend a lot of money and I certainly don't like people spending a lot on me. I found my ring myself, told David I liked it, he proposed a few weeks later. Was it $5000? Absolutely not. Less than $200? Sure was. Do I care? I definitely don't. I told him if he ever decided to propose to me, the ring had better not be expensive. Know why? Because that's useless. Even if my ring had cost $50, I would still be incredibly happy. Why? Because I love David. He's my best friend, my partner, my future husband. Something like that from the right person who loves you more than anything in the world? You can't even put a price on that. I am not a woman who expects her man to buy her expensive things. I don't even like it when he pays for my dinner! All I want is happiness, a long life together, and love forever with him. So stick that in your pipe and smoke it.

ANYWAY. The long distance bit.'s so difficult. All I want to do at the end of the day is come home, hug him, give him a kiss, hold his hand. I want to lay next to him and fall asleep...but I can't. Starting out, we wouldn't see each other for months (6 months was the most we've ever gone) and some days I just felt like quitting. If you've never been long distance with someone, you should count your blessings (for lack of a better term). It's easily the most difficult thing I've ever done. Some days it gets easier but after spending a week together and waking up next to each other every day then going back home and not seeing's the worst. 

People have tried to bring us down, tear us apart, do whatever they could to ruin us. Let's not pretend that mine and David's relationship has been the best. It hasn't. We have plenty of arguments that are small but we've have plenty of full-out anger matches (99% is me). I'm definitely not going to go into detail, but let's just say that the problems have been removed.

So here we are: 2015. After almost 2 years, we'll be closing the gap of ~500 miles between us. This is our year. This is the year the rest of my life begins.