Not an Adventurist.

Thoughts of a quixotic weirdo.

Category: Thoughts

The Curse of the Religious University

I don’t know what it is about religious universities but there’s this weird thing that you notice more here than anywhere else on the planet.

And that is relationships.

Couples are literally everywhere. Public display of affection is unavoidable. It’s disgusting and yet you want it. Unexpected kisses from your significant other while you work on assignments. Ridiculous handholding all the time. (Which I don’t think I could do because sweaty palms are my specialty!) There’s a yearning feeling that is accompanied with disgust. Polar opposites and complementary emotions. These two different emotions show up to the front door of your brain, hand in hand, waiting for you to acknowledge their presence.

I see you. We all see you. Always.

Every day, I watch as couples embrace. Young love (whether it be love or something else) apparently blossoms on my university grounds. Is it something in the water? Am I missing this special love fountain? Maybe. I don’t know.

It’s the worst in the spring. Couples sprout up like the springtime daisies. Beautiful, unexpected, but I must be allergic. My nose itches and my face crinkles and yet I want it. I crave the love that I see in others and yet it’s disgusting.

Maybe I’m a cynical 19 year old. Maybe I’m a hopeless romantic. Maybe I’m stupid and obnoxious. Maybe I’m unreasonable but that’s me.

I embrace the emotions that knock at my front door. I let them in, fully aware of the things that they bring. Doubt, hopelessness, pessimism, yearning and an undying love for the unknown. Because I am a self proclaimed romantic. I’m silently, hopelessly, head over heels in love with the idea of being in love. I’m in love with the idea of being wanted. I’m in love with the idea of intimate conversations in a crowded restaurant. I’m in love with the idea of being able to go on long walks in complete silence and be comfortable. I’m in love with the idea of having stupid conversations because we can. I’m in love with the idea that I’ll find my significant other through an 20th century chat room and we will fall for each other without ever meeting. I’m in love with the idea of spotting someone across the room and feeling a spark. I’m in love with the idea of having your best friend be your one true love. I’m in love with the idea of secretly loving a person you used to despise. I’m in love with the idea of everything cheesy and cliché. I’m in love with the idea of love.

It’s the curse of a religious university. I don’t know why it happens and I sure as hell can’t stop it. I warn you all now, no matter who you think you are before you come to a university like my own, you will all of a sudden be in love with the idea of love. It’s absolutely ludicrous and unhelpful but there will come a time when it hits you.

But let me tell you now that if you’re in my situation of being in a hopeless love affair with the idea of love, never doubt your potential. Never doubt that you’re not good enough. Never doubt that you’re not pretty enough or smart enough or funny enough. Never be unhappy with yourself because you are the only you there is. It’s sounds so cheesy but I love it. Embrace yourself in all your glory because you’re fabulous for being yourself.

Don’t be overcome by sadness if you haven’t been in love. Don’t doubt yourself. That’s unreasonable and if you’re feeling this way, shake it off and forget about it. Be happy for those who are also happy, but be happy for yourself. Focus on being your own and work to become the person you want to be as an individual.

I read this quote a while back and I think it’s a great thing to remember when attending a Christian university like my own, and whenever you’re feeling worthless or unwanted.

“Stop being so afraid of never finding the right person to love you but rather, fear that you may never fall in love with yourself.” -Ming D. Liu


I Believe

I believe in late night walks, new shoes, and the smell of rain when it hits the hot pavement. I believe in good and that the world is inherently that — some may say that makes me naive and immature, but I believe that it makes me hopeful. I believe in homemade vanilla ice cream and the happiness a summer day brings. I believe in love at first sight, even though I’ve never been in love. I believe in the sprouts between the sidewalk because it shows that the toughest exteriors can still bring forth the simplest things in life. I believe in the bliss that can be found in a chocolate bar. I believe in the sadness of a lost goldfish because without that sadness, we would never see the joy life brings. I believe in walking barefoot, hiking farther than you should and pushing yourself to the limit. I believe in being alone because sometimes that’s all I need. I believe in the moment when the plane takes off when I feel incredible and terrified, at the same exact moment. I believe in mason jars as cups because I’m human. I believe in television, no matter how terrible it may actually be. I believe in using my bedsheets even in the summer because a part of me is still scared of monsters — even if I’m nineteen. I believe in dressing to the nines, but also dressing to the zeros. I believe in the words that are spoken, written and shown throughout the centuries because stories are beautiful. I believe in missed connections because everyone loves a good romantic comedy. I believe in pillow pets, Disneyland and blank notebooks. I believe in Netflix. I believe in new haircuts, kitchenware and recipes. I believe in baseball and making new friends. I believe in laughing until I can’t hear myself laugh anymore. I believe in freshly baked cookies and ice cold Coke Zero. I believe in the happiness of others because everyone deserves the best. But, above all else, I believe in God and I believe He listens to us, loves us, and roots for us. I believe that God believes in us.

He believes we can do great things.

And I do too.

To Those I’ll Never See Again

To those I’ll never see again:

It’s weird when you think about how many millions and millions of people there are on the earth. Everyone knows it, we’re all taught it, we understand that the world is a big place that can hold an enormous amount of people but it’s a hard concept to wrap your brain around, you know? There are about 7.1 billion people living on earth, 317 million people in the United States, 38.04 million people in California, 3.858 million people living in Los Angeles, 30,243 people enrolled in my university, 250 in my biology class, 4 in my college apartment, and only one of me.

There are people we see one day that we will never see again. How crazy is that? How many people out there have I been in an elevator with that I’ll never see again? How many people are going to watch me trip on the sidewalk and glance away before laughing again? All these human beings that I glance at, talk to, smile at, doesn’t even make a dent in the population of the world and yet I see so many people each day.  I was thinking about this a while ago when I was people watching. Obviously, each one of these people has their own life and their own experiences and sometimes I really wonder what their stories are.

So, this is dedicated to the people I’ve met, but will never encounter again.

To the man I held the door open that one time when leaving work: You looked important and busy, I hope you made it where you needed to be.

To the group of people in an Anaheim hotel elevator a few years ago who saw me get stuck in the closing doors: You probably don’t remember laughing at me but we had a good time, you and I.

To the girl who asked me to take a picture of her and her friends: I hope the pictures turned out okay. (And don’t hate me if they didn’t.)

To the guy I made eye contact with that one time on campus who smiled at me: I was having a crappy day and that was really nice.

To the freshman girl I met at the college orientation last year: Surprisingly, I never saw you on campus but I hope you figured out the best way to get back to your apartment.

To the guy who held the door open for me and told me I had beautiful eyes: Thank you and you made my day.

To the couple I saw walking down the street while holding hands: I hope you’re still going strong.

To the girl I met while sitting for 7 hours at jury duty: I hope you accomplish your dream of becoming a lawyer. Also, please bring something to do next time you have jury duty.

To every person I’ve talked to while waiting in lines at theme parks, waiting for a class to start, walking to class, anything: Keep going and be you because everyone’s different and that’s absolutely amazing.

You all have a story, a life, an adventure. Sometimes I feel really stupid because I can be so self-centered that I forget other people are living their life differently than me in their own way, using their own methods, dealing with their own problems and obstacles in whatever way seems best for them. We each have a different path we’re taking and it’s extremely interesting to see when and how our paths cross.

Above all else, I hope all is well.


The girl who you’ve (probably) forgotten about and it’s okay.


The following is my breakout entrance into the poetry world. Please enjoy.


Sometimes I think that maybe I could write poetry, but then I think I probably shouldn’t. Because a) I don’t think I have the patience for it and 2) most poems would end up like this.


Summer Senses

Have you ever longed for summer and then when it’s FINALLY there, it doesn’t quite feel like it really is summer? I’m pretty sure I feel like that every year. The build up is so great, second semester feels like it lasts a lifetime, and I can feel the season coming. Eventually it does come and it’s not initially what I had imagined.

You’d think I’d get the idea. Every year, summer is this milestone of sorts. It proves that I got through another year of school. It also means spending time outside, enjoying the sun, breathing in the warm Californian air. But it takes a while to get to the point where I can sense summer.

It finally feels like summer.

The sun has finally begun to stay up later and the days have become longer. June gloom brings a feeling of the coast as the mornings are breezy and relaxing and as the day grows long, the brightness of the sun sends everything into an evening haze, seemingly emphasizing the season. Birds, as annoying as they can be in the middle of the night, chirp themselves (and myself) awake and something about that sound is weirdly reminiscent of summer. The air is warm and when you breathe it in, it tastes like happiness. A trip to the beach is refreshing and I relax as I wiggle my toes into the sand, watching the waves until I find myself asleep. (And then wake up realizing I forgot the sunscreen.) Washing the car becomes an activity, not a chore, and the hose recalls memories of childhood shenanigans running around in joy, screaming as the cold water from the hose squirts out at me. As I take a walk around the neighborhood, I recognize the familiar scent of charcoal burning as the neighbors dust off their barbecues for the perfect dinner. Sprinklers water the grass as as the water hits the hot pavement and another smell arises that I wish I could bottle up to keep with me. The decision to wear shoes is a no brainer — don’t do it. There’s something about walking around barefoot that just feels right in the summer, as long as you avoid stepping on some kind of insect. At around 6pm, after a day of work/relaxing/cleaning/whatever, I take a drive with the windows down and radio on with the evening haze setting the glow over everything in sight and it’s the perfect summer moment.

What a beautiful, refreshing, relaxing, and wonderful season this is.

Deleting 2048

Sorry for the lack of posts over the past couple weeks. I’ve been “busy”. I say that lightly because that’s always someone’s excuse for not doing something. It always works well and no one questions you. 

Last week I took a major step towards bettering my life. I deleted the 2048 app off my phone.

This might not seem like a big deal. But it is. That game had taken over my life. Any spare moment, the game was open. While I was watching something on TV, the game was open. When I had better things to do with my time, the game was open. I realized this a while ago, I was just so set on winning the game, I couldn’t delete it. I finally got to 2048 and it wanted me to get 4096. It’s a never ending madness. I realized this and after a few days (in actuality, it’s been more than a few days), I deleted it, along with some of my other time consuming apps that I figured could be removed from my phone.

It’s crazy to think how dependent we’ve become on our cell phones. I know, we’ve all heard this rant before but it’s true! After I removed the first app, I figured it would be okay to delete some other ones because I really do have better things to do with my time.

With this being the case, I’ve set a mental goal for myself. I’ve seen myself get sucked into turning to my cell phone for a scapegoat in various situations, whether it be when I’m waiting for someone, for the crosswalk to change, when I’m sitting on my couch at home and it’s bugging me. I don’t want to be that person who is obsessed with checking her phone countless times a day to find nothing new on social networks. When you refresh the page and nothing new comes up, it’s probably because you’re checking too frequently. The time I’ve spent looking at my phone could have been spent doing something that would have actually benefited myself. I’ve decided that slowly, I will remove the time-wasters and replace that time with something else. I want to be able to have the patience sit down and read, write, exercise, draw (even though I can’t draw to save my life), whatever it may be, without worrying about my phone.

This is the first week that I’ve had this mindset and it’s working well for me. I’ve made the time to catch up on some reading, put together a book list, cook a decent breakfast and write. (Now, don’t get me wrong. Some of these things I do while the TV is on because it’s time for Rachel’s annual Gilmore Girls rewatch marathon. I know TV can be a time-waster too but please. One step at a time.)

I hope I can keep this up because there’s so much I want to do and I don’t need a cell phone to do it. I’ve learned that I’d rather have a relationship with an actual human person rather than their social networking feed. (Again, another disclaimer. I do not shun my phone. I do use it to communicate and make it a point to be available if someone needs to talk to me.)

Again, I love social networking, obviously. I’ll probably keep those apps on my phone. And, heck, I don’t have anything against a good time-waster game every once in a while, but it doesn’t need to be every hour. I’m just trying to choose to do something a little better with my time.

Last week, I found this old essay I had written about time when I was about 11 and it was quite an interesting read. So, I’ll share with you the wise, awkward, philosophy-attempted words of sixth grade Rachel Erickson.

“It takes time to do something or nothing. Wasting time does you no good. Time is limited. Use it wisely. Take time to do important things not useless tasks.”

Brilliant. Don’t you feel enlightened? Thank you, awkward middle school self.

The People of the Airport

Every time I enter an airport I know I’m going to face some interesting people, to say the least. And every time I sit at the gate waiting for my flight to get in, I observe said people because, let’s be honest here, you can’t really get anything done in an airport terminal. Yeah, sure, I pick up Pride & Prejudice expecting to get at least a couple pages read, however, I always fail to move past the page I started on. So, I always end up with my book open, bookmark in hand and a lack of interest, no matter how fantastic the novel may be. It’s okay. Sometimes people watching is more interesting. Actually, it’s always pretty interesting. 

As I was sitting in the Burbank airport waiting for my flight, I began to notice how a lot of these personalities I’ve seen in an airport before. I began to take note of them and this is what I’ve come up with. 

When in an airport, these are the types of people you always end up seeing: 

  1. The business man who can’t afford to take his Bluetooth out of his ear. Heaven forbid he doesn’t speak so loud. Everyone can hear you complaining about whatever it is you’re complaining about.
  2. The family. There’s always at least one family waiting for your flight, more if you’re flying to/from Utah. It’s inevitable.
  3. The concerned elderly mother. I’m pretty sure I see one of them every time I fly. This older lady was waiting for the plane while chatting, very concerned-like, on her cell phone. Her other hand was being used as an ear plug so she could actually hear what was being said on the phone.
  4. The guy who would rather be sleeping. He’s kind of slumped over in his airport chair without much to do. Quite honestly, I can see where he’s coming from.
  5. The woman with her chihuahua service dog. Explanation not needed, apparently.
  6. The guy who can’t take off his sunglasses. It’s too bright in the airport.
  7. The “crazy” man who wanders around the terminal, making unintelligible comment to the annoyed travelers he comes in contact with…all while I hope he doesn’t sit next to me because I’m obviously a terrible human being.
  8. The average traveller. You can find them alone or with a friend. They aren’t talking, even if they are with a friend. This is me. I fall into this category along with most of the other people on my flight.

Maybe I’m a horrible person for remembering all these people. Maybe I fall into a different category: the girl who sits and stares at everyone. Or the person who always end up people watching. Or the weirdo who writes about it afterwards. 

I don’t know. But I feel like this is true and I’m probably missing a couple more token characters of the airport terminals, but let me know because I can’t really think of any more. 

Grandeur and Insignificance

I’ve always thought that the universe was an amazing thing. It’s always been a source of wonder and awe for me; whenever I look up to the sky, I’m blown away by the things that I’m able to see. Millions — actually billions — of stars, galaxies, and planets are just out there in space, waiting to be discovered, to be observed. It’s absolutely mind-blowing.

This semester I was enrolled in an introductory astronomy class for one of my GE credits. Once I saw that that class was offered, I knew right away that I would take it. And it’s a good thing I did because I’ve learned so much about the universe and how it operates.

On our last day of class (which also happened to be the day that the lunar eclipse was happening), I was sitting there in the planetarium, looking at the stars and basking in the glory that is our universe. I’ve always known that space is a big place — I’ve always  just pictured a huge area of things with stars and planets — but I’ve never actually realized how ENORMOUS it is. When we observe these hundreds of galaxies, that speck of light to us is actually millions, billions, of stars within what seems like just a dot. It blows me away to think that objects are billions of lightyears away and that we can look at things as they were millions and millions of years ago. It’s fantastic. (I start using millions and billions so much it seems redundant, but it’s true! There are so many things out there!)

For thus saith the Lord that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the Lord; and there is none else. -Isaiah 45:18

One of the things that was stressed in my class was that the universe bears record of a Creator with everything that it does. I know that I go to a religious school where secular knowledge is accompanied by spiritual and religious knowledge as well, but I really do believe that every single aspect of our universe testifies of a God. There are many people in the religious sphere that look at the Big Bang Theory as something that is contradictory to the teachings of the Bible and religious beliefs, however, it’s really not. The more we learn and theorize about the way our universe was created, the more my own beliefs of a God are reinforced. God has a hand in everything. We don’t know how the universe was created, but we know by looking at and observing other galaxies that they form out of the dust and matter that is sparked by a solar wind, which begins the creation process.

God has a hand in everything, therefore he basically can do whatever he wants. We don’t know the answers to everything now, but the best we can do is study the wondrous universe that He has created because I know that He wants us to learn and to grow in our own knowledge. He wants us to learn about these things. My classes this year have strongly showed and proved that we (and I’m speaking to the general religious sector of the world) cannot shun science, because it doesn’t make sense. Religion should embrace science because it’s the knowledge and understanding of God’s creations.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that space is brilliant and I’m in constant awe of the things that are out there — the things we’ve seen, along with the things we haven’t seen yet and may never see. My professor started taking about dark matter and dark energy and I was so confused and yet so intrigued by the concepts. There are things out there that we cannot see and yet we know and have faith that these things are there. (Sound familiar?) It’s scary to think about how huge the universe actually is because you start to think about how insignificant our solar system is and how really tiny we are in the spectrum of the final frontier. But, you know what? That is okay because we all have a purpose here, no matter how small and common we may seem.

God knows us and he created this planet, this life, this universe for us. We are not insignificant.