Things Carried Forward

I absolutely love music. I have a favorite band (Matchbox Twenty), but I also love a number of songs by a variety of artists and bands. Music is something that connects people, and connects events.

For me, certain songs remind me of certain moments in my life.

When I first heard “If I Die Young” by The Band Perry, I thought it had a haunting quality I hadn’t heard before. This was about three years before I learned I had a hole in my heart. When I listened to the song after my ASD diagnosis, well…it took on a whole new meaning. All of the lyrics are fantastic, but sink me in the river at dawn/send me away with the words of a love song/the sharp knife of a short life/well I’ve had just enough time. This song is one of my all-time favorites and, as a sidenote, I was lucky enough to see The Band Perry live at Artpark in July of 2016. So that was pretty damn cool.

I moved to Cortland, NY to start my first non-waitressing job about seven months after my surgery. I remember standing in the kitchen of my second apartment (the one I would stay in the longest), looking out the window at the first real snowfall of the season, and thinking there were so many opportunities to come, and just kind of reveling in my own potential. “Ready to Run” by One Direction was playing from my phone at the time, and I usually always think of that moment in Cortland every time I hear it. The lyrics that always get me are there’s a moment when you finally realize/there’s no way you can change the rolling tide/but I know, yes I know that I’ll be fine.

When I drove from Cortland to Buffalo for the last time after I’d moved all my stuff (and did two additional weeks of living at my parents’ place), this song came on the radio. I’d heard “Confession” by Florida Georgia Line before then, but on that drive specifically it really resonated with me. Moving to Buffalo was a big change for me, and there had been some doubt from some people close to me that I was, maybe, not doing the right thing. That guy in the windshield looking back looks just like me/but there’s a crack in the reflection/this is just a moonlight soaked, wind and smoke/right hand on a cold one confession.

(Some people still aren’t sure I did the right thing moving out here, but I regret nothing, so there’s that.)

If you look at the presets on my car radio, half of them are technically Canadian stations. This is probably the reason that I picked up an affinity for Marianas Trench, specifically “Who Do You Love”. There’s just something understated yet profound about well I’ve been deep in this sleeplessness, I don’t know why/just can’t get away from myself/when I get back on my feet I’ll blow this open wide and carry me home in good health.

Sometimes I’ll listen to the same song on repeat when I’m going to or from work. Sometimes, if I’m having a rough time — whether that’s from my own brain being a jackass or something outside of my control that I just had to deal with — I’ll put on this particular song as a sort of reminder. “Glorious” by Macklemore ft. Skylar Grey is that song, specifically for got a chance to start again/I was born for this, born for this/it’s who I am, how could I forget?/I made it through the darkest part of the night/and now I see the sunrise/now I feel glorious, glorious.

My current I am going to listen to this on repeat while I drive to work is a toss up between “Miracle Pill” by The Goo Goo Dolls, and Fitz and the Tantrums “Fool”. Of course there’s also “The Bones” by Maren Morris, “Here With Me” by Marshmello ft. CHVRCHES, “Brand New” from Ben Rector, and “Buy My Own Drinks” by Runaway June.

Pardon the fact that it’s been literal months since you’ve heard from me. Hopefully I do better.

Hope & Kindness,

-ML

Cheers to Three Years!

The last few weeks at work have been, basically, a runaway freight train. Like, if you caught me at any point this past week and asked me to perform basic math – we’re talking the 2+2 variety – I would have probably given you the wrong answer after I’d thought about it. It’s been wild.

On the bright side, we’ve (the fabulous group of people I play 7th Sea with) have managed to have a game night two weeks in a row. Last week was our first trial run dealing with combat, and honestly, I’m impressed my character hadn’t somehow died. I literally couldn’t roll to help myself in any way, shape, or form. This week went better – I smashed a beer stein over someone’s head so hard it shattered.

I had a bit of an anniversary at the beginning of this week. Tuesday was my three year anniversary here in Buffalo! So here, have some highlights from the past year.

  • I finally decorated by hanging pictures on the wall, and acquired a wall clock in the shape of a pocket watch.
  • We took M to New York City for the first time – and to her first musical – and she absolutely loved it.
  • Somehow I was five years out of college and went to my Five Year Class Reunion (with a bonus of being at the Alumni Author Book Signing Event, which was ridiculously cool).
  • I watched roller derby in person for the first time.
  • The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra checked in with me on twitter about the draft of my novel.
  • I went to the new Yankee Stadium for the first time in the summer to watch an afternoon game with my Dad and my Great Uncle. (The Yankees won, by the way.)
  • The Cowheart turned 5 and I had cake in celebration.
  • I took a big, big chance, left the job I’d been at for five seasons and started a new adventure in the world of being a contracted worker in an R&D department. I now work with food, and it’s  G L O R I O U S
  • I went back for a third year of tap and second year of jazz at the dance studio.
  • Went to Cape Cod for the first time ever with Mom and M, and fell in love with Provincetown and windmills.
  • Went to my first writing workshop ever, pitched an agent in person (and she liked it!) and wandered around Canalside.
  • I made some good lookin’ cinnamon rolls for Christmas morning. Like, look at these babies. They’re great.
  • WE WENT TO DISNEY. WE TOOK M TO DISNEY AND UNIVERSAL AND MY GOODNESS I’VE NEVER LAUGHED SO HARD IN MY LIFE (I also learned that very large rollercoasters screw with my inner ear enough to make me think I’m dying, and therefore I must take Dramamine before the fun starts.)
  • Unfortunately, I had to say goodbye to my beloved Pepper kitty. She crossed the Rainbow Bridge at the old age of 15, and had a long, wonderful life wedging herself into boxes, playing with newspapers, and lying across my computer keyboard.
  • Cats and Rent came to Shea’s and yes, I saw them both. Cats turned into a weekend with my good friend Ash, and it was exactly what we both desperately needed at the time to just kind of recharge.
  • And of course, from last spring and into now, there’s been numerous TFC games.

And that’s more or less where I’m at. Ready for the next adventure, really, which is a lovely thing to think about.

I hope you have a fabulous weekend and, if you celebrate it, a Happy Easter.

Hope & Kindness,

-ML

The Odd Trip

Hello lovelies!

I might have looked at the date on the last post I did and cringed.

So here we are on the far side of Thanksgiving (my favorite holiday) and I’ll give you the cliff notes version. From my last post you’ll know my sister got married in September with me as her maid of honor. What I kind of didn’t tell you lovely folks, unless you follow me on Twitter, is that I’d given my two weeks notice at my old job (no more testing asphalt for me!) and said yes to a contracted position with a large, privately-owned food company in the city of Buffalo. When I was in college and finishing up my degree, I wanted to either be in forensics or in food science, and it took me about five years, but I finally made it happen.

October was my first month at the new job and a bit trial by fire but so great, and so much fun, and exactly what I’ve wanted to do for years. Also in October was a rather whirlwind trip to Cape Cod and back with the Mama, and Mads.

It’s absolutely stunning out on the coast.


Dennis Port, MA

October rolled into November which rolled into Thanksgiving, which rolled into my ten year high school reunion. I’m still not totally over the fact that I’ve been out of high school for ten years, okay? There weren’t a ton of people there, but it was good to see the ones who were, and catch up with them. 

November has predictably rolled into December. It’s also brought snow, which isn’t unusual for Western New York. And that’s about where we’re at now.

On the writing front, I’ve sent out my first full manuscript since Lady of Sherwood (which was way back in early 2016), and I’m now more or less in a holding pattern until I hear back. I have my fingers crossed – I’d actually gotten the opportunity in early November to pitch this particular agent in person at a workshop in downtown Buffalo – but it’s still a waiting game, and I’ve got to be patient. Which is not as easy as it sounds. At any rate, life is pretty damn good, regardless.

That’s about it, for now. As always you can find me on Twitter and Instagram.

Hope & Kindness,

-ML