W O R D S

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atennesseenoel

This is important. 

Let me start by admitting this – I searched the internet and beyond for a blog post or SOMETHING that could summarize my thoughts and feelings on this situation. I searched topics such as “Cyberbullying”, “How to React to Social Media Critisicm”, and even “When People are Mean on Facebook.” I came across nothing that hit home for me; the thoughts running through my mind a mile a minute, the way I’ve been feeling (for 6 years now), the anger I’ve had to work through. Nothing and nobody put this into words. So I figured I’d take a swing at it. *DISCLAIMER* I am not a writer and have never claimed that title. This is pure thoughts being typed out as they bubble over — grammar mistakes and all.

Here we are, in 2016, with the most incredible/horrible gift to mankind — Facebook. It’s a gift, I…

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Exploring Seoul – Hoho Myoll Cafe

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We have just a little more than a month left in Seoul, and the fellow and me will be heading back to America. Read the rest of this entry »

Introduction To Juicing

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Okay, I’m sure by this point, you know all about juicing, right? I mean it’s everywhere, and just about everyone has done it. But in case you haven’t known if you should jump in, I have a few notes and introductory how-to’s to get you started. Read the rest of this entry »

Hungry love.

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Love this

hannah brencher.

Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 10.52.22 AM

1.

I’ve been writing a lot about anxiety recently for my book chapters. Without knowing it, anxiety is a bigger character in the story I am telling than I anticipated to be. 

I am writing this story with Lane’s permission. There aren’t many parts of Lane and my’s growing relationship that I’ve shared on the internet. I’ve been a blogger for 5 years now and so I have learned how important it is to separate your life from what is happening on the screen and what is taking place off of it. Relationships can easily be muddied up when two people are invested in the image of their relationship rather than the character of it.

My heart for every reader– as I write my truth– is that you will invest your life in a person who is more of a map to you than a story. Stories are beautiful but…

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Baked Cheese Fries w/ Kimchi Sauce

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Eat these cheese fries!

Wine and Bread

kimchicheesefries

It’s true, I can be a little flaky when it comes to eating healthy. Phil has got to be the most patient man in the world. I’m pretty notorious for bugging him with nutrition facts, and then eating one meal per day, in which said meal usually includes Doritos. That’s balance, right?

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Why I’m Tired of “Knowing” What Love Is

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annaandphil“How to know if you’re in a relationship that will lead til marriage.” “Is he marriage material?” “10 signs you’re in a relationship that can last.” “The secret to a healthy relationship.” ……

How many of these do you see on a daily basis? And how many times do you click on one, secretly hoping your significant other will pass the test, and that you’ll have gloating rights over all the boyfriends in the world? And how many times does that guy turn out to be a mere human. Let me guess. 9/10 times? (Lol there’s a little hero in all of us). At least this is what I’ve found.

Phil and I have been married for almost two years, so I get it, I don’t have all the experience. But I have some, and I know somewhere out there, someone is bound to find this relatable. I know someone else, guy or gal, is tired of their relationship being undermined by unrealistic expectations and standards. And I DO have a lot of experience in that particular field. I struggled for a long time with basing my standards for my romantic life off of what I read, what I listened to, what I watched, or what I just assumed.
It worked when I was 17, you know? I mean not really, but it was at least at a point where I had room to grow up a little.

When you look at our picture, which is actually from our engagement shoot, I bet you don’t see two people with a past. All you can see is the love we feel for each other. Not the frustration of finding a pose that looks good on us, making sure I like the way my neck looks, trying to make my hair look like it’s manageable. You don’t see the pain from my childhood, our arguments over how to properly assemble our dresser, or the endless piles of dirty dishes that need to be washed.

I read an article this morning titled something along the lines of, “10 ways to know if your relationship is perfect.” There were things along the lines of, are they your best friend, do you love spending time with them, can you cry around them… you know, the usual. Do you respect each other, do you tear one another down when you fight… I think all those are very key, but basically I think what this article was asking, was “are you in love with this person?”.

Spoiler alert, I’m not always in love with my husband. And part of me doesn’t want to say it because, “Oh no! What will people think?!” … And honestly if you want to judge me, have at it. But the truth is, relationships are very difficult. And though I would love to say that I don’t have shortcomings, or that Phil is always perfect, it isn’t true.

We all know this too. There isn’t a person in this world that is a perfect significant other. And I hate “knowing”  what my relationship is based on someone else’s life, standards, flaws, hopes, and worldview.

It’s overwhelming, confusing and inaccurate. and I feel that I should defend all us imperfect people.

I think everyone at some point has been hurt, has been lied to, has had a little piece of their heart broken. And everyone at some point will get frustrated, will get angry, will feel hurt or betrayed. Everyone is trying to find their way in life. And the second we start putting lines, conditions, and rules to what a personal and intimate relationship looks like, that’s when we become the judge in someone else’s life.

Now, I’m sure the intent of these articles is purely innocent, and designed to be cute. So I’m not trying to spew my soapbox all over you like a hate-wave. The only point I’m trying to get across, is to remember when you see pictures of smiling faces, articles that take you to nostalgic places, or quizzes that test your compatibility… remember, that everyone is flawed. No one is completely put together. We’re all dragging around a backpack of burdens, trying to find a place to leave it at.

Don’t forget to see that person you’re with through eyes of grace and love. To remember what’s important about love. To forgive them when they fail you. To not base the foundation of who you are on what other people claim to be the “right” way. And to be honest with yourself about who you are, and who your partner is.

Comparing yourself or your partner to other people, or other people’s standards will lead to disappointment. Always. It’s a bottomless pit of mystery. And it’s never satisfied.

Regardless of whether you’re spiritual or not, remember that the person you’re with was created as a beautiful, loved, and individual being. And they should be treated as such.