Oh, hey there.

I’m officially the worst blog-runner in the history of the world.  I’m pretty sure it’s been seven years since I last posted.  Just kidding.  Kind of.

Anyways, the past two weeks-ish has been a crazy whirlwind of change and emotion and giggles and laughter and crying, I’m so emotionally exhausted.  Let me tell you, packing a lot of change into two weeks really takes it out of ya.  For the most part, I know everything is going to be excellent and the change is for the better.  However, sometimes I have a hard time remembering that it’s going to be difficult before it gets fun.  I’m having a hard time coping with the fact that I’m not gonna be living at home come Thursday.  I’m incredibly close with my family, especially my mom, and we’re both taking it pretty hard.  I know it’ll be fine and it will eventually make us closer, but I’m trying to soak up every last moment.  I’m trying to do that with everyone, really.  My last day of work at the Starbucks I was at (before I transfer to the one at school) was on Saturday and it was such a bittersweet day!  Saying goodbye to the people I’ve grown so close with over the past year sucked.  It’s nice knowing that I’ll be missed, but I will definitely miss everyone at the O&P store.  (Even though sometimes I’m pretty sure it’s hell).

A fun thing that I did during my hiatus was go to the One Direction concert!  I’ve loved them for five years now, so seeing them live in concert was so surreal!  I went with Ed’s little sister and his mom.  It was a blast spending a night in the city with them.  Sunday night was the concert and then, on Monday, we stood outside Niall and Liam’s hotel for two and a half hours and waited for them to come out!  Unfortunately, we left about two hours early, because some of the girls we were standing with sent Maggie pictures of them and Liam after we had left.  It sucked not being able to see them up close, but that concert is one that I’ll remember forever.  Their song 18 reminds me of Ed, so I was a wreck when they played it on Sunday.  I love him so much, and sometimes it slaps me in the face when I least expect it!

I’ve been getting ready to go to school, packing, saying goodbyes, etc., for the past few weeks and one of the hardest things I’ve had to do was say goodbye to Meg.  She’s attending the University of Iowa, which is 196 miles away from me.  She’s been gone for almost two weeks and it feels like two years.  I miss her terribly.  I’m going to road trip to her one of these weekends, and I can’t wait.  Another sad thing I’m having to do is say goodbye(ish) to Ed.  Even though we’re going to school very close by, I know it’s not going to be the same.  I’m going to be in a new school, living in a new home with someone I’ve met once, starting at a new store, taking new classes, and living on my own, full time…so even though I’ll be out of the strict grasp of my parents, we aren’t going to be able to see each other much.  He’s working as much as he can, taking class, and being a dad.  Our schedules are absolutely jam packed, and I’m sad that we won’t always be together.  Tomorrow I think I’m going to go to his house and spend some time with him, just the two of us, because it’ll be the last time before I move in, I think.  I want the last few days of summer to myself and my family, because I’ll miss them more than anything.  But I haven’t left yet and I already miss Ed’s cuddles.

All of this change in a short amount of time is very overwhelming.  I do know, though, that in the grand scheme of things, it will be all worth it.  I couldn’t be more excited (sans terrified) for this next journey!

Asking questions you don’t really want the answer to:

Sometimes, we all have these days.  You’ve got to know what I’m talking about: everything’s going great and then BAM! (really, feels like a huge BAM!), something hits ya and makes your day go from 60-0 real quick.  This doesn’t happen too often to me, but it’s a big bummer when it does.  For instance, take today.  I worked from 7:30A-2:00P and then came home, had some down time with my mom, and took a shower before Ed picked me up.  Then, we drove around and ran a few errands and I was in the best of moods.  After hanging out at his house for a bit, his parents took us (me, Ed, his sister, and Noah) to Chuck-E-Cheese.  We ate pizza, ran around, played games, and took cute pictures!  It was so much fun to see Noah experience this for the first time, and I’m lucky that their family wanted me to be a part of that.  Eventually, we went home and Ed put Noah to bed (not before he took me through his teeth-brushing routine which somehow ended up with him telling me that birds don’t like dog food, ???).  When he was settled, Ed and I were sitting in his backyard, on his porch; something that we do often.  I’m a freak when I can see the stars in the sky, and it was so clear that there were dozens out tonight.  I loved it.

We jumped around from topic to topic, playing music in the process, until we finally settled on Noah, parenthood, and of course, our future.  It was a sweet conversation, and it left me with a longing and excitement for the future.  The conversation turned into something that I get rather nervous talking about, which is Ed and Noah’s mom’s relationship.  I have a genuine curiosity about it, but I feel like asking questions is out of my limit as his girlfriend.  He’s never been shy about anything I’ve asked him, and he always reassures me that I can ask him anything because he’s an open book: the way he looks at it, he wants people to learn from his situation and no one’s going to do any learning if he’s closed off or awkward about it.  So, my curiosity and confidence getting the best of me, I asked him a few intimate questions about his previous relationship.  Almost immediately, I regretted asking.  It felt nosy, but I also think that I knew the answers before he told me.  I was hoping that he would tell me what I wanted to hear, to prove my suspicions wrong and reassure me that I shouldn’t stress about anything.  However, he gave me the answers that I knew I was going to get and the answers that I didn’t really want.  He was completely honest, and I love him so much for that; it would have been easier for both of us, I’m sure, if he would have given me the answers that I wanted.

I think Ed knew that I was upset.  I’m not very good at hiding it, especially from him.  It’s actually infuriating sometimes, because sometimes the best thing is to be upset by yourself, and whenever I’m with him he always finagles it out of me.  Before I got the chance to say anything, he said that even though he had no problem answering any of my questions, he thought that the questions I had asked were ones that maybe I shouldn’t have, at least at this point.  Not because he’s ashamed of his past or the questions, but because he knows I struggle with his past.  He kept apologizing and that made me sad, because the only person who I was angry with was myself.  It was selfish of me to think that getting the answer (that I didn’t want) to a question (that I shouldn’t have asked) would quell my curiosity or make our situation better.  I know Ed loves me, and he does an amazing job of taking care of me and making sure I’m happy.  Tonight, though, I made myself so unhappy in the worst way.  Instead of getting mad or heated or frustrated or irritated, I made myself sad.

I can’t help but think to myself, what the heck is wrong with you??  You’re in this beautiful relationship, with the most handsome and caring man you’ve ever met.  Why can’t you just live in the now instead of worrying about his past?  Why must you ruin nights like this??  I know that I’m the happiest I’ve ever been, but tonight I couldn’t keep my eyes from feeling heavy or my throat from feeling tight.  I know Ed picked up on it, and I’m thankful that he respected me enough to not press me on the issue.  Even he knows that sometimes it’s best to be by yourself with your emotions, especially something that affects me like this does.

Recently, I made a deal with myself that, in order to find utmost happiness, I need to let go of things I cannot control – namely Ed’s past.  There is no way I could go back almost five years in time and stop them from meeting or dating, and I don’t know if I would want to because I know Ed’s the man he is today because of everything that happened in his past.  He wouldn’t be the same Ed, he wouldn’t be my Ed.  This being said, my biggest obstacle is Noah’s mom.  Even though she isn’t in Ed’s life anymore, I still feel threatened by her.  She knew him first, she loved him first, she was his before anyone else was.  I hate that, and I get a huge pit in my stomach when I think about it.  So writing this entry has been a huge pleasure for me.  (That was sarcasm, could you tell?).  These are the nights that I find myself struggling with the deal I made with myself.

However, I know that happiness is more important than dwelling on something that I can’t change.  So I’m working on it.  For now, I guess I’ll leave you with this: be careful with your curiosity.  Even though there might be a question that’s pressing the front of your brain and on the tip of your tongue, make sure asking will be worth the feeling you get if the answer is one you don’t want.

Advice (and other shenanigans)!

Yo yo yo!  Sorry, that was annoying.  Soooooo anyways, here’s the follow up most from my last blog (found here) about the struggles (but also joys) of dating a teen parent.  Let me clarify something, before we even get started: I knew Ed was a teen dad when I first got to know him, and I’ve never had the mindset of being Noah’s “New Mom” or “Other Mom”.  I didn’t enter the relationship so I could babysit someone else’s kid.  I was purely in it for Ed, and still am.  Do I care about Noah?  Absolutely.  He’s an extension of Ed, which makes me love him as much as everything else about Ed.  Plus, he’s the sweetest little boy you’ll ever meet.  So that’s a bonus.

Now that I got that very important tidbit of information out there, we can continue.  I’ve recently experienced a lot of unfamiliar emotions in regards to my relationship.  There’s something to be said about watching someone you love interact with his child (I say his purely because that’s my situation).  He lights up when he sees his son, and likewise for when Noah sees his dad.  He did an amazing job of studying and reading all the books when Noah was on his way and when he was younger.  Just the other day he was educating me on the safety of making sure the child’s car seat buckle was placed properly over his sternum to prevent asphyxiation in the event of a car crash.  He would’d agree with me, but I can tell that he’s proud of everything he’s learned about being a dad, and he really does make an amazing dad.  He wears the fact that he’s a teen dad on his sleeve and is not embarrassed or hesitant to answer anyone’s questions or talk about Noah or his situation at all.  I definitely think that’s admirable; in a situation as complex as his, it would be easy to feel closed off to the idea of talking to someone about it.  Ed embraces it though, and it’s something that I love about him.  Even seven months in, he’ll still answer any of my questions about the pregnancy or being a dad.  Watching him with Noah makes me excited for our future.  We know that we’re young and, in the grand scheme of things, haven’t been together for that long.  We also know, though, that we want to spend the rest of our lives together.  We want to get married, buy a house, wake up next to each other, start a family together.  It’s something that I think about all the time, and I cannot wait.

In relation to that, there’s also a sadness that I have experienced.  It hit me a few months ago, that I’ll be the holder of very few “firsts” for Ed.  I won’t be his first kiss, love, partner, or even the first one to mother his children.  This was such a raw emotion for me, and it’s still something that I struggle with every day.  Ed knows that I feel this way, to an extent, but I don’t know if he knows how much it still affects me.  A few weeks ago, we sat in his car in the parking lot of the restaurant we were going into and he listened to me vent and yell and cry about these feelings, which was the first time I had expressed this to him.  I haven’t broached the subject with him again, but it definitely hasn’t gone away.  I don’t know if it every will, to be honest, but I guess that’s something that I’ll have to get through should Ed and I continue on the path that we are on.

Another thing I’ve had to deal with (and am currently dealing with) is the drama between Ed’s ex and I.  Before we dated, she and I were actually civil with each other; we sat next to each other in our Drama Lit class and had many conversations.  When it came out that Ed and I were together, the friendship that we had established was completely crumbled and she had no intentions of being my friend.  To an extent, I understand her frustration and anger.  I’m another woman who is receiving the love she received for four years; that’s a pretty raw feeling.  Also, I’m sure she was worried and angry about me meeting Noah.  Granted, this didn’t happen until a few months into our relationship, but I can imagine that there’s an insecurity that occurs when the father of your child brings another woman around that child. Recently, I’ve been trying to “bury the hatchet” (or so they say) with her, because Ed and I talk seriously about our future, and there are going to be many occasions when all three of us are in the same room together, for Noah.  They’re trying to maintain a civil relationship so Noah doesn’t have to grow up with more drama than is necessary – remember that he’s going to live with the fact that he’s only 15 years younger than his parents.  When I told Ed that I was insecure about his past relationship with her and that it made me sad, he suggested that I try to be civil with her, not only for Noah but because it would make me feel better as well.  It takes a lot of energy to be hateful towards someone.  He mentioned that, at Noah’s last doctors appointment, she asked about Ed and I, and then proceeded to tell him that she was happy for us and that she thought we were cute together.  I was skeptical at first, because this came from his ex and also the girl who blocked me on Twitter when she found out about us (I KNOW!  7th grade, much??).  However, I told him that I would make an effort in being civil with her, for everyone’s sake.

Last week, Ed’s family brought me with them on their family vacation to Michigan City.  I had the most amazing time, so when I got home the first thing I did was upload all the pictures of us & vacation onto my social media sites – Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc – and got many compliments from friends and family about how happy we looked.  I was happy.  The next day, I found out that Ed’s ex had said some things on Twitter about how my “time was running out” because I had “been there for a while”.  She then went on to say how she’s “always gonna be here, bitch”.  I was mad, not only because she was talking about me behind my back, but she was cowardly about it in the fact that she tweeted it because she thought, since I was blocked from viewing her profile, I couldn’t see her tweeting about me.  One thing that I’ve always had a problem with is when people talk about me behind my back.  The way I look at it is that I’m 18, and if someone has something to say, just say it.  It only makes waves when people gossip behind my back, and I find it a bit infuriating.  When I told Ed about this, his initial reaction was to tell me to brush it off because she was immature.  However, I stand firm in my decision that I’m done being civil with her.  She burned that bridge so fast, and if I’m being honest, I don’t even know if she’s intelligent enough to see that what she did will impact the future relationship between she and I.  But, I digress.

The purpose of this blog post was not to rant about the maturity of people, but to provide some sort of guidance for girls (or boys) who are going through the same situation that I am.  As big of a controversy as teen parenting is, there isn’t much support for the girlfriends or boyfriends of teen parents.  I can’t express how many times I’ve scoured the internet for a blog, support group, or even a Yahoo! Answers thread about what to do if I’m feeling this, that, or the other.  Hopefully someone who needs this will stumble across it and it’ll provide some relief.

That’s it, at least for now, on this subject.  I’m sure there will be more blog posts about this, but for now I’m typed out.

Truth Time!

Okay.  Admittedly, there was one major reason that I wanted to make this blog, and it’s for everyone who needs a resource I don’t really have.  In order for this to make sense, I have to admit something that I don’t really feel too proud of; it’s not that I’m embarrassed, it’s just something that someone my age doesn’t normally deal with or experience.  In my first post, I mentioned that I was in a happy, committed relationship, which I most certainly am!  My boyfriend’s name is Ed, and we’ve been together for about 7 1/2 months, but were best friends for about 2 months before that.  Ed makes me happier than I’ve ever been; he takes care of me, makes me laugh, and still gives me butterflies (I know!!!).  He’s the most handsome man I’ve ever met and he puts a smile on my face without me even knowing.  He’s chivalrous and insists on opening the door for me and holds my hand wherever we go – he also lets me be the little spoon and will willingly give up his share of the blanket if I get cold.  Pretty much, I’m the luckiest girl in the whole world.  On top o that, as I mentioned before, we were best friends before we started dating, so we got to know each other really well.  We would spend countless nights on the phone with each other until two, three, four in the morning somedays, and others we would drive around and goof off and enjoy each other’s company for hours, simultaneously doing everything and nothing.  He really is my best friend and the love of my life.  I know I’m only 18, but I’m quite certain I found the man I’m going to spend the rest of my life with; the most amazing part of that revelation is that he feels the same way about me.

All fairytales aside, our relationship has its share of ups and downs (somedays it feels like we get more than our share).  There are a few things that make our relationship more complex and/or mature than other relationships, especially considering that we’re only 18.  When Ed was a sophomore, he and his girlfriend of a few years at the time had a baby, a boy named Noah.  Winter of our junior year, Ed and his girlfriend broke up and went on to see other people.  Ed is still very much a part of Noah’s life, and loves his son more than anything in this world.  I was not the first girl Ed dated post break-up, we started dating almost a year after they split up.  He and his ex (who’s name I’m intentionally omitting because she would freak out if she found this, lol) have had custody battles and parenting classes and agreements, but recently Ed and she have gotten it pretty much set in a routine, in that he gets Noah every Wednesday for a few hours and every other weekend, Friday evening to Sunday evening.  I met Noah when Ed’s family celebrated his 18th birthday, one Saturday in January.  I think Ed and I were both nervous – Noah was only two at the time but I still wanted him to like me, or at least not hate me – but I think the night went relatively well.  Since then, we’ve taken quite a liking to each other.  He calls me Rachy, jumps on me, and although he won’t admit it, loves when I tickle his stomach.

Our relationship is very different than most relationships that people our age are in.  In most relationships, the couple compromises over dates and dinner options.  Ed and I compromise over whether or not we can go to a graduation party if it’s on a weekend that Noah sleeps over, or if it’s doable to attend a concert in February, when he’s not sure if he’ll have Noah.  He’s had to miss some concerts of mine because they fell on a Wednesday, and sometimes I’ll turn down the offer to have dinner at his house because I don’t want to infringe on his “Daddy-Noah time” as he calls it.  I know that he wouldn’t extend the invitation if he didn’t want me there, but it’s hard not to feel like I’m intruding sometimes.  There are times when I feel like an outsider in my relationship, or a third-party.  As much as I hate to admit it, his ex-girlfriend and he are always going to have to be around each other, at least to make Noah’s life as easy and painless as possible.  Does it upset me?  Absolutely.  I don’t think Ed would take to me constantly calling or texting any of my ex’s, and I know that it’s a completely different situation, but it still bothers me.  No girl, no matter the situation, likes when their boyfriend is talking to his ex.

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Ed and I, post one of my choir concerts
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High-fiving at prom, because it took me like five minutes to pin on his damn flower (also look how handsome he is).
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Downtown Long Beach, Michigan City, Indiana ☀︎ 8/4/15
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Noah, Ed, and I, at our friend Brooke’s graduation party last weekend. Noah and I had just gotten out of the pool (if you look really closely you can see that I’m wearing Ed’s swim trunks)

There are other aspects to this side of our relationship, but this post is getting a bit text-heavy, so I’m going to continue it in a follow-up post.  The focus of that one will be more guided help for girls (or boys) who are in my situation and are not sure how to cope with all the feelings (both expected and unexpected) that come with dating someone who has a child with another person.  For now, enjoy these cute pictures of Ed and I (and Noah, as a bonus!).

Since when am I allowed to be an adult?? (28 days!!!)

I move out in 28 days.  That’s insane.  Literally, in 670ish hours, I will be officially moved out of my parent’s house and into my dorm room.  Living as an independent adult.  (Cue: On My Own, Les Miserables).  I’m toooooooooooooooooooooo excited for college.  I’ll be attending North Central College in Naperville, Illinois, to study secondary education and theatre.  Even though NCC is only 20 minutes away from my house, I’m living on campus to give me the whole “College Experience” thing that everyone raves about.  What is this beloved rite of passage that all pre-college students hold so sacred?  I couldn’t be any less clued in.  But regardless, I’m excited!  Recently, I’ve gotten more nervous about moving out that I have been before.  It’s a comfort to know that I’ll be so close to home, but I’ve never gone longer than, like, a week without being with my family.  I know, lame right??  I love my family and I’d say that we’re pretty tight-knit.  My mom is for sure my best friend and the one who I know I’m going to miss the most.  I’m pretty sure it’s going to be harder for her than it is for me, if you can believe that.  We’ve already cried about it like seven times and I still have a month left.  I know it’s a net chapter in my life, but there’s a small part of me that doesn’t want to move on.  I really found myself in high school, more specifically junior and senior years, and I could definitely have gone another year to take the classes that I was never able to and have my favorite teachers one more time.  Now, I have to live with someone who I’ve met only once before, and I have to make a whole new circle of friends, not to mention that we’re supposed to do it in the four days they give us before we start college classes.  That’s like a full load of AP classes.  Shit.

Sorry.  Back to reality.  I’m nervous but excited and it hasn’t really set in yet.  Over the course this next month I have to pack my clothes that I’m taking for first term, pack all my new furniture and dorm supplies, start my job at the Naperville Sbux, and say goodbye to one of my best friends who’s going to University of Iowa (196 MILES AWAY).  There’s a lot to do, so I’m gonna get to it. 😬11044639_1059581294056089_2980998733190863699_o Photo on 6-17-15 at 3.24 PM

What the heck, Rachel you’re a blogger now??

Hey cyber-friends.

So, I’ve realized that this is probably a silly thing for me to do, especially because I live in suburbia and no one here blogs unless their life is totally dramatic or they’re really good at cooking.  Unfortunately for you out there reading this right now, I am neither of the aforementioned blog types – I’m just an Average Joe (Rachel?) who’s got too many thoughts for her head.  I can’t promise that each entry will have a coherent theme or much of anything interesting to say, but I’ll try my best for all of my faithful readers.  (Hi, mom).  Some topics you can expect from me:

  • college
  • boyfriend & friends
  • work
  • personal life

I don’t know about you, but that vague list looks pretty damn intriguing!  (Kidding).  I’m gonna get started on those super interesting blog entries now, while the ideas are swimming around in my head.  Who knows how often I’ll feel motivated, so I should really get cracking!

Hello world!

Okay.  Well, this is a bit weird…I feel like I’m just going to end up rambling to absolutely no one (because let’s be real, no one’s going to read this).  I think it’ll be healthy for me, though.  I’m doing this for me.

Some basics, for all of you readers out there:

  • I’m eighteen years old
  • tenjulys is actually July 10, the day I was born
  • I’m attending North Central College as a Freshman in the fall
  • I plan on majoring in secondary education with a minor in theatre
  • I love to sing, act, and be on stage
  • I’m in a committed and happy relationship
  • I’m a Starbucks barista

So, that’s me in a very small nutshell.  Not too terribly interesting, but my life is far from dull. Hopefully this blog/journal thing-a-ma-jiggy will provide some entertainment in y’all’s lives!

That’s all I got for now, peace brothers. ✌🏼