I’m Scared

Over the past seven years, I’ve dated… a lot. I’ve met a plethora of gentlemen, assholes, fuck boys, man-children, nice guys, bad boys, and dude bros (to name a few) and each of them left with me some invaluable insight (good or bad, mostly bad) in regards to the world of dating. 

I learned that love really isn’t enough sometimes, that it should be a bleeding red flag when he’s more keen to try butt stuff over providing oral, that a high sex drive doesn’t always mean a high level of physical affection, that if he invites you to spend the day with him and meet all his best friends but refuses to treat you to dinner in front of them and asks if YOU want to buy HIM dinner then he’s a royal prick, that yelling “NO!” at you like a dog during the throes of passion when maybe you got a little too excited and bite-y is completely not OK, that if he tells you your dog weirds him out because she has an expressionless face (HAVE YOU MET CECE???), he’s a dick. The list is offensively impressive and never-ending. But amongst all of these almost unfathomable acts and reasons to second-guess WTF you’re doing dating this person, one particular thing stands out more than others, and it’s the “I’m scared” excuse.


Thankfully, this copout has been used on me sparingly, but it’s shown its ugly, dumb, lame face enough times to compel me to call it out on a public forum right now.

You’re not scared. You’re immature. 

You’re not scared. You’re dishonest.

You’re not scared. You just don’t like me that much.

You’re not scared. You lied about being ready to “find someone.”

You’re not scared. You’re full of shit.

You’re not scared. You’re a child.

You’re not scared. You’re a fuckboy who is in no place to settle on one vagina right now.

You’re not scared. You’re a prick.

You’re not scared. You’re non-committal.

You’re not scared. You’re just a douche.


                        ^ literally you ^

If you’re under the age of, say, 30 (maybe 28/29) — OK. I get it. Maybe you are a little scared. You’re still young, figuring your shit out, “sowing your oats” as they say. I mean, committing to one person for the rest of your life is terrifying for everyone, but when you have a penis and animalistic tendencies, I can’t imagine how much more terrifying it might be. However, if you’re 30+, you’re still young but you’re not scared — you’re just not keen on the idea of commitment but very learned on the art of luring innocent, well-intentioned ladies into your man-lair to fawn over then fuck over. You know all the right things to say to convince them you are, in fact, “ready” and have “been ready” and “just haven’t found her yet.” You’re a master at liking someone enough to remain just interested enough so she’s in a constant state of are we or aren’t we until she pushes you for an answer. That’s when you hit this girl — whom you’ve led on with actions and behaviors of an almost-boyfriend for the past few weeks/months — with what you apparently consider to be the perfect out:


You just didn’t expect to meet her, nor for her to be as amazing as she is. You weren’t ready to like someone this much, and it scares you. Your recent shitty and shady behavior can only be explained off by being really, really scared. Wittle baby fuck boy is scarewud! Scarewud of feelings, responsibility, respect, accountability, communication, and connection. Scarewud that this vagina might get old fast, that what if there’s another, better vagina out there waiting for him? Scarewud of actually having to care about someone else who might question their behavior and actions when no one else has dared to do such a thing (or has but was promptly and quietly ghosted). Scarewud of scarwuing girls off at the front-end by being another really scary word: honest. 

We know you’re not scared, so stop feeding us that line. Instead, just be straight with us. Tell us what you’re actually looking for, what you expect out of dating or by being on dating apps, where you’re really at right now in terms of “meeting someone,” or that you dig us but just aren’t feeling the kind of vibe you’re going for. Whatever it is, we can handle it. We’re big girls who have been through the ringer more than once — you surely won’t be the one who does us in for good. We’re stronger than that, trust us. There are enough “scared” assholes in the world, so do us women a solid by putting on your big boy britches and rising to whatever the occasion may be — even if it’s rising up to let us down. We know we’re hot and a good lay and it’d be a shame to part for those reasons, but if we’re not on the same page and it’s evident, why be a terrible person by playing along?

Stop being scared shitless about being bravely honest, and we’ll stop walking around wondering what we did and why this always happens. That would be really tight.

Thank you and goodnight.



I Can’t, Vol. 47

As I sit here, going to town on a vanilla-flavored Greek yogurt decked in Nature Valley’s Cinnamon Crunch granola, all I can think about is how I’d rather have 100 other things for breakfast. Like, say, an egg sandwich. Or an everything bagel slathered inappropriately with whipped cream cheese. Or a Whataburger taquito (potato, duh). Alas, beggars can’t be choosers (bitch, this ain’t Chipotle) (but how I wish it was).

How’s everyone been? Good? Great. I’ve been lagging on here lately — I suppose I just haven’t been inspired or in the word vomit mood. However, I woke up this morning with the urge to share pointless opinions with anyone who willingly subscribes to my bullshit, so here goes nothing with volume 4fucking7.

I can’t…

believe the first words out of my mouth to my gynecologist during my first ever exam when I was 18 years old were: “Is this what sex feels like? Because if so, I’m NEVER having it.” They laughed heartily while reassuring me it most definitely DOES NOT. Their claims wouldn’t come to fruition for another two years.

I can’t…

forgive myself for not buying this top last Saturday while at Anthropololgie when everything was 30% off. I let my sister convince me it wasn’t cute, as sisters will do. And now I can’t stop thinking about it. If anyone hears miraculously of some sort of Anthro sale, PLEASE LET ME KNOW. Maybe I’ll buy you one, too.


I can’t…

get enough of my favorite comedian, Lauren Lapkus, and her rise to fame. I’ve plugged her podcast on my blog several times and was devastated to hear it’s on hold until March. That was until I learned it’s because she landed a role in a new Will Ferrell/John C. Reilly comedy and is filming in London until then! GOOD FOR YOU, LOLOLAPLAP. YOU GO, LOLOLAPLAP. But really. She is a comedic genius, and I feel like a verklempt Jewish mother when I hear good news about her because I’m just so pregnant with emotion every time. 

I can’t…

even handle all the Christmas decor in my house right now. I feel confident in saying you will probably never meet another Jewish person who gets this excited about Jesus’ birthday. Look. My family is 110% Jewish. As far as I know, there isn’t a drop of any other kind of blood in us. However, we were raised observing Christmas because my mom LOVES. TO. DECORATE. You think you’re gonna take the happiest, most festive holiday of the year away from her and her enviable and inspiring decorating capabilities? HA. I think NOT. Therefore, I have grown my own personal Christmas decor collection over the years, and as I was placing it out last night, realized how legit it’s become. Behold, my confusingly intricate baubles. I swear it’s magical in person. Come over for a cup of hot cocoa+peppermint schnapps and see for yourself.


I can’t…

accurately carry-on enough about how my new coffee setup at home. Last week, my pathetic and slightly embarrassing Mr. Coffee auto-drip carafe cracked for a third time (serves me right), so I decided it was time to move on entirely and try out a new at-home coffee method. Years ago, I dabbled in French Press but couldn’t seem to get it down pat. Well, after getting inspired by a few snapchats, google searches, and reviews, I decided to take the plunge and be that person with their own coffee bean grinder, french press, and above-average coffee beans. Y’all. YOU. ALL. I’m still getting the bean to water ratio figured out to my liking, but so far, this has been an incredibly magical experience. Not only is grinding the beans an absolute joyride, but the entire process is calming, delightful, and produces that smoothest cup of coffee I’ve ever made under my own roof. If you’re looking to make the switch, I highly suggest it. COFFEECOFFEECOFFEE.

I can’t…

wait every winter to make my favorite soup EVER. I may have posted about this last year and, if I did, SORRY. But if you need a break from chicken noodle and want something just a little different, try this Turkey Orzo soup. It’s simple AF, so delicious, and makes a butt load (in fact, I usually cut it in half cause, ya know, #dinnerforone). The lemon juice makes this soup, so don’t skimp on it. In fact, add a bit more if you please and thank me later.


I can’t…

believe this, and I am so sorry in advance for perhaps ruining your day but I can’t be alone in this horrible news, so here goes: I found out yesterday that the steak roll-ups from Zoe’s Kitchen are 980 calories. Yes, you read that number right. 980. Nine hundred and eighty calories. For THOSE. For wimpy little tortillas filled with thin ass strips of steak, melted cheese, and grilled onions. COOL. DID YOU KNOW THAT YOU CAN A REASONABLY LOADED CHIPOTLE BURRITO FOR LESS CALORIES AND WAY MORE FLAVOR AND HAPPINESS? Beans, salsas, RICE, way better quality meat, corn, and SO MUCH MORE FOR SO MUCH LESS. This is why I NEVER stray. Never again, Zoe’s. Never again. 

I can’t…

do Instagram stories ever again. I KNOW I’ve gone back and forth, but the week before Thanksgiving was my final attempt to fucks with it and I am done. After taking several polls, enough of my favorite and most trusted social media gurus were steadfast in their “FUCK IG, SNAPCHAT FOREVER” responses, so I had my answer. Sure, I get double the views on Instagram, but it just feels wrong. And the fact that the timer on pictures isn’t adjustable really grinds my gears. Plus, authentic, in-the-moment posts are WHAT SNAPCHAT IS FOR. And lastly, filters. Duh. So, in conclusion, bye forever, IG stories. And follow me on Snapchat (username: icantemma).

I can’t…

with this perfect Wes Anderson for H&M Christmas commercial. I figure it’s the perfect note to end on today, so enjoy.



Into It

“What is Emma into this week?” is what you’ve probably been asking yourself since yesterday. I know me and what I love is top of mind for the majority of America. It’s a heavy cross to carry, but it’s my life.

That said, with each new week brings new discoveries of things I am obsessing over. My “Into It” installments should essentially be considered an exercise in appreciating the little things because, in a world full of fuckboys, ghosting, and politics, sometimes the little things are all we’ve got.

INTO IT: “Insecure” on HBO


Oh, I’m sorry. Issa Rae is perfection and so is her show. It’s like “Girls” but 300x better with cooler chicks, better writing, and the most killer soundtrack of any television show I’ve ever watched (which is available on Spotify, by the way). No exaggeration when I say I was hooked after the very first scene, which doesn’t happen often. The show has so much going on, it’s almost impossible to choose what social commentary is the best: online dating, being coupled up but in an unfulfilling relationship, seemingly having it all but not being able to land a man, race, workplace politics, being comfortable in your own skin, bi sexuality, wanting to tap into your passions but being scared to, infidelity, temptation… the list goes on. Issa has a fresh take on it all that is so smart, I feel undeserving of getting to watch this show. Have I sold you yet? WATCH IT.

INTO IT: Reading

What a stupid “Into It,” you’re thinking. And you’re right — it’s not very inspired. However, with technology creeping into literally every single aspect of our daily lives, the art of sitting down with a good book is lost on most of us, including myself. We want to read. We want to “be better about reading.” But with a new Netflix original or HBO series rolling out weekly, our laundry list of shows to watch and become a sloth for is always weighing heavy on our media-loving hearts. Every night is a struggle between finally cracking open that book you’ve been meaning to read for the last year or watching another episode of “Easy” (another great, new show P.S.). Our attention spans suck dick and that’s a fact. But I’m trying to make a more concerted effort to dedicate time to reading a book every night, and it’s been, well, really nice. It obviously helps when the book is amazing, so if you’re into stream of consciousness, coming-of-age stories told from the perspectives of two main characters, try I’ll Give You the Sun. This book has helped me remember what it feels like to love a novel so much, you can’t read it fast enough but also don’t want it to end. Basically it’s only enabled my anxious tendencies, and I am A-OK with that.


INTO IT: Micellar water

It sounds high-tech and a little dangerous, but this facial cleansing option is anything but. Look — I have sensitive skin and not just kind of sensitive. I’m talking really fucking sensitive. Like fragrance, fancy oils, or any sort of acids cannot TOUCH THIS SHIT. My skin loses its damn mind over nothing (kinda like me in general), therefore I have a pretty specific routine when it comes to what products I use and when I use them. However, I started noticing lately (and panicking over) how often my forehead seemed to be breaking out. Not big, pussy teenage breakouts but the smallest of breakouts only I or my overly critical mother would notice and subsequently beat myself up over. I realized the forehead situation was most likely due to how I sweat like a 300-lb male body builder up there when I work out because I’m #blessed. After lamenting to my skin-obsessed mother who is 10x more sensitive than me, she came back at me with micellar water. I guess this stuff has been around for a long time, but is making its resurgence into gals’ makeup removal routines. It’s fragrance-free, gentle as all hell, and helps in really getting all that prettiness off your face for real. I’ve only ever relied on my face wash to clean my face, being too nervous to try any sort of extra anything. BUT this stuff works. 


I’ve been using it for the past month or so to wipe down my face after a workout (I keep a little self-made sample bottle of it in my gym bag) and to give my face a once over before washing it with my face soap. I’ve definitely noticed a difference in my skin’s clarity and am pro-micellar water now. I got the Garnier brand, but lots of other brands (both expensive and not) bottle up their own. Go for it; just don’t use it as a full face washing substitute. Rather, tease your skin with it like foreplay, then really go for it with your face wash. Just wear protection. YA DIG?

INTO IT: Vegan chili

I’m not a Vegan, Vegetarian, Pescatarian or anything of the like and never will be. Mama loves her meat too much. However, every now and again I crave a small break from all that chicken, steak, and turkey. Sometimes I truly want a “cleaner” meal that’s void of anything that might’ve ever felt any kind of emotion in its short life. Last week, I saw a friend making vegan chili on her Snapchat and was all “SEND ME THE RECIPE NOW THX.” I made it last night and OKAY, GUYS — it’s so friggin good. Black beans, sweet potato, and quinoa make up the bulk of this recipe with tons of added flavor to boot. I only made half the recipe (#foreveralone) and have enough for what feels like a week (but really three servings if we’re being truthful). Make it tonight, eat it tonight, eat it tomorrow, and the next day and forever after that.


INTO IT: Nature Valley granola chunks


CHUNKS. They finally got it right and decided “Why don’t we just help our lazy-ass customers out by breaking up the delicious bars of cinnamon into chunks for them and their oddly obsessive yogurt habit?” THANKS, GUYS. Because it was a genius move to make just a big ole bag of broken granola bars available to the general public. I am loving it and sprinkling it on everything: yogurt, Halo Top ice cream, cereal, salads, pizza, tacos, beer. YOU NAME IT. But seriously, it’s so delicious and so convenient. Get you some!


I wrote about Rtic back in June, but I have to show them love again because I just ordered a 20oz. tumbler and am in deep love with it. This company, man. First, Yeti. Then, by way of a brilliant contract, the same technology with Rtic only half the price! I got my 20oz. tumbler, HANDLE (yeah), and stainless steel straws last week and guess what? Drinking water is FUN AGAIN. Granted, I have to pee roughly 8 times a day at work, but it’s worth it. Keep this product top of mind when it comes time to panic about Christmas presents. Trust.


INTO IT: Ilana/Baby Spice bun pigtails?

I write this with a question mark because I actually am not sold on these at all. I’m wearing them today because I had a very strange urge to rock the style ever since I joke-wore them for Halloween, but felt like an asshole before I had even tied the second bun into place this morning.


No one has made fun of me yet, but that by no means they aren’t saying shit behind my back about today’s look. A few people have actually said they like them, but we all know what an “OMG I love your bracelet. Where’d you get it?” situation looks like. I’m confused at myself and a little upset and need to talk it out. Please leave a comment as to whether or not I should ever wear these again (be gentle).



When Things Feel Out Of Control

This week has been really fucking weird.

And shitty.

And sad.

And confusing.

And shocking.

And any and all synonyms for all the above.


Of course, it started late Tuesday night and has carried on over the last few days, only growing in strength and tenacity. The onslaught of upset, sadness, and warranted negativity on every orifice of my social media feeds has been overwhelming. It’s been escapable and all-consuming these past two days and for a highly sensitive person like myself, it has affected me way more than I ever meant it to. 

Being a highly sensitive individual isn’t something I’ve ever talked about openly. Sure, I’m dramatic and emotional (duh). But being labeled as a highly sensitive person is a real thing. Basically, we’re empaths, i.e. the polar opposite of a sociopath. Not only do we have feelings for days, but we feel EVE.RY.THING. Long ago, when I was a young girl in grade school, I remember a teacher telling me that, although my empathetic nature was admirable, it would get me in trouble later in life if I didn’t learn to control it. And boy has it. Of course, at almost 30 years old, I have a much better handle on my empathetic tendencies, but they still get in my way daily by way of anxiety, paranoia, and sensitivity. 

All that said, the unfolding of this week’s events rocked me more than I ever imagined possible. I am not a political person; that is, I have never really cared all that much or been that involved. So me reacting as much as I did to this week’s happenings was as shocking to me as anyone else. And, because I’m a highly sensitive person, my natural instinct was to take this upset and multiply it however I could (READ: emotionally cut).

I realized that, on top of this election, there is a lot going on in my life right now over which I have zero control. None. Nada. Nope. And — SURPRISE, SURPRISE! — on top of being a highly sensitive, empathetic, anxious person, I’m also (drum roll, please) a bit OCD. I like to be in control, to a certain extent (READ: MEN, MAKE A DATE. PLAN A DATE. COURT A WOMAN FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THINGS HOLY OMG). When mama (that’s me) doesn’t have at least some idea of something going on in her life, she loses it a little. I like to know things, be able to predict stuff, have a plan. That’s just who I am. But this week highlighted for me just how much I am not in control of in this very moment of my life, which only added fuel to this raging fire of upset and nerves. 


I can’t control that the guys I’m most interested in don’t follow up their words with action.

I can’t control that I don’t feel romantically stronger toward the guys who are doing all the right things.

I can’t control that my friends are moving up and out and leaving me.

I can’t control how humans decide to behave.

I can’t control anything but my reaction to all this.

And that’s what I realized yesterday. After calling both my parents separately to cry and writing into work to let my boss know I needed to take the day to process, I had an overwhelming need to purge my closet and reorganize its contents, which took a lot of energy and concentration on my part. I then packed up those clothes and drove myself to a few secondhand clothing stores to see what I could sell off and donated the rest to women’s shelters. After that, I went to the gym and, although no part of me really had the energy for it, pushed through a pretty solid workout. Once that was done, I realized my unfortunate upper lip hair inheritance had gotten out of hand and needed to be taken care of, so I did that. My last stop of the day was getting my car washed, inside and out. Finally, I returned home to my dog, took a shower, and decided the only dinner acceptable to eat was in the form of Panang curry, so that was ordered. That’s when it hit me — without realizing it, I had spent the entire day doing things I could control. I dedicated the majority of my day to ensuring my personal surroundings were tended to and taken care of. 

I’ve joked before on here and to family and friends about my OCD tendencies. How I love to clean, how disorganized life feels when my home is messy, how I truly enjoy doing laundry, how after an intense cleaning session I love to sit back and admire my work, how I often find myself mentally picturing my tidy home in times of turmoil at work or in the world. Yeah, it sounds crazy. I know. But it helps. And yesterday helped, too. Because when you have tendencies like I do, having at least your personal, immediate surroundings in order fills you with a sense of calm. When you’re a list-loving, task-oriented, priority organizing fool like me, being able to check so much off a list is the ultimate sense of serenity. 

This week has felt out of control. I can’t change what happened Tuesday night or that I can’t get a text back or that I don’t want to jump someone’s bones as much as I do someone else’s or that my friends are making smart decisions for themselves career-wise but leaving me because of it. But I can change my sheets and my closet’s composition and the fact that I have a 13-year-old boy’s peach fuzz on my upper lip and all that makes me feel just a little better. I still look like all hell, am tired, have a tension headache, and cannot stop emotionally eating, but fuck if my surroundings aren’t in tip-top shape (seriously, y’all. My closet looks so tight).

I’m giving you permission to do something today or this weekend that you are in full control of and that makes you happy. You deserve it. We all do.



The Art Of Not Settling

I’m 29 and, in a mere 6 months, I’ll be 30. For the past (almost) six years, I’ve dated A LOT. I’ve had a few legitimate boyfriends, countless almost-boyfriends, and enough werecasualbutwhatthefuckwaitwhatarewethough situations to last me a lifetime. Seriously, if I never find myself in another one of those situations, I will know I’ve made it and am going to be okay.

Suffice it to say, I’ve been through and seen a lot. The stories I’ve accumulated over the past six years are some of my best because they create a personal archive of some of my cringe-worthy, unbelievable, WTF-inducing worst. Day after day, month after month, year after year, I’ve done what I could to keep my head up, as they say. But some days, my head is way harder to keep afloat than others. Some days, it weighs 100 pounds and all I want to do is feel pathetically sorry for myself. To curl up in my bed in a robe in the fetal position for the entire day and let the onslaught of new couple/engaged/married/pregnancy announcements fill my newsfeed and fragile, vulnerable head with depressing thoughts and weep. Not cry. Weep (weeping’s more Scarlett O’Hara). Weep about how shitty past guys were, how shitty future ones will be, how shitty present ones are, why I keep running into these situations, why I haven’t found IT yet, why everyone else seems to have what I want, why I attract all the wrong dudes, why something that feels so close to what I want turns out not to be, why why why why why WHY. Ultimately, during those really down days, I question myself and my worth as a partner until I wear myself down, close my eyes, and pass out (much like a toddler after having a tantrum). 

And all this is hard to admit because I want to uphold my label as the quirky, outspoken, funny girl who can make any nightmare of a dating story something to laugh about with a light heart. I want to be strong; an independent, I-don’t-need-no-man, “I’m amazing and perfectly content on my own” representative for all single womenkind. I don’t want to let it all get to me like it can. It makes me feel weak and vulnerable. But I’m only human — a human with a pretty big heart full of affection that wants to dump that affection into someone’s deserving lap for keeps and, when that enthusiastic affection backfires, I get sad.

This has been the pattern for the past six years — these let downs followed by short-lived pits of despair out of which I can’t find my way and, finally rising like a Phoenix from the ashes (dramatic) and doing it all over again. And you know why?

Because I refuse to settle.

That’s the thing. When I sit back and really think about all the men (more appropriate term would be boys/children) that have come and gone (pun intended?), I realize how many of them I could still be dating if I was willing to settle for less than what I know I want. I mean, it’s not always them calling things off. In fact, most of the time it’s me. Because I see something about them or about us that doesn’t sit right, and my gut sends up about 52 flares and some Russian submarine captain frantically screams “ABORT! ABORT!” in my head until I can no longer ignore him. 

The fact of the matter is that not settling is actually the harder road to travel.

I don’t want to keep calling things off. I don’t want to continue to sit back and wait for the inevitable red flags to show their faces. It’s awful. I hate it. It sucks. I want to settle — really, I do. I want to be able to say “You know what? This is good enough and he’s fine enough and we’ll have a good enough life and I love him enough and we’ve been together long enough and sex is good enough and he’s nice enough and this’ll do.” I want to just decide on someone, make the call, and be done with it. I want to look past the crimson-colored flags, sweep them aggressively under a rug, and lie to myself about them until I actually believe the lies. I want to make excuses for shitty behavior and get past it. I want to not care so much and overthink and overanalyze. I want to tell myself I can put up with something I know I can’t. 

I want to be able to say “I don’t need a guy who fully gets my humor or I his. I don’t need to be made to feel special and unique. I don’t need to be treated like a prize; I’m fine feeling like any girl to this guy. I don’t need to be made a priority; I’m fine being an option. I don’t need to be courted; “hanging out” is the new dating and I’m okay with that. I don’t need real dates that are planned at least a few days in advance; last minute requests that showcase a total disregard for my time and lack any sense of urgency are just fine. I don’t need to have an understanding between the two of us, a mutual respect. I don’t need to be fully sexually satisfied or exceptionally intimate; it’s not that important and him getting off is way more vital anyway. I don’t need to be cherished. I don’t need to be someone thoughtful. I don’t need to be in love in a way I’ve never been; that’s not even real anyway. I don’t need flowers or thoughtful cards or any of the cutesy things females pretend not to care about but live by. I don’t need doors opened for me or to be treated like a lady; I can get my own doors. I don’t need to feel a crazy connection; just liking him enough will suffice.”

But I can’t. I literally cannot bring myself to do or say any of that because, at this point, I will be damned if I settle. I haven’t gone through what I’ve gone through just to settle; I haven’t called guys on the carpet for their less-than-stellar behavior or treatment of me to ultimately roll over like a dog and say “Ya know what? Nevermind. It’s fine. I’ll shut up now and take whoever and deal with whatever.” HELL NO. But because I refuse to settle, it makes this entire process harder, longer, more strenuous, and often unbearable. Because I’m a girl with expectations and standards in a generation that has enabled ghosting, fuckboys, and the refusal to commit to anything more than a boozy Sunday brunch, I’m having a really hard time out here.

And please do not take me for a girl with unrealistic standards, because I can assure you I am very much not that. I know probably more than anyone how imperfect people are. In fact, even after all the ugly situations I’ve experienced, my natural inclination is to still give people the benefit of the doubt until proven otherwise. I am well aware that I am nowhere close to flawless (although, admittedly, Queen B can make me feel like I am most days). I am willingly willing to put up with a long list of a lot as long as the most important things (what I like to refer to as the “non-negotiables”) are undeniably met and everything feels “right.” And because it’s theoretically only supposed to be “right” with ONE person, I will not settle for wrong after wrong after wrong. 

So I’ll continue to keep a small guard up, pay attention for warning signs, question questionable behavior, and trust my gut when it’s frantically trying to tell me something. That’s the one thing the past six years has gifted me with — a credible gut and the ability to actually listen to it. Like any good young 20something, I used to be an expert in ignoring it, but the wait time has steadily decreased over the years. Slowly but surely I started to chip away at the amount of time I would consciously discount my gut — it’s gone from literal years, to several months, to only a few months, to mere weeks and I’m proud of that. The goal is to get it down to one week, then five days, then three days, then, hopefully never because, finally, all it’s telling me is, “I’m good. You good? Good.”

Here’s to holding out.