whoa, another revamp.

I apologize for lack of posts and then changing it up on you every time. Though this time was a total surprise and it makes me pretty happy :). And I also apologize that because I don't blog often (enough), my blogs end up like small novels. feel free to stop reading at any point that you become bored.

((still here? COOL!))

What have I been up to lately, you ask? (Probably not, but I'm going to tell you anyway).

Well, I've been...
--getting 40-hour training for Illinois Rape Crisis Services. It's a pretty intense process and it leads me back to where I started this whole journey of social justice work and activism. It's sort of baffling to me how I've changed so much over the past 3 years and yet I find myself coming full circle to rape education, prevention, and survivor support. And the fact that I can find myself still so positive about all of that is extraordinary to me (particularly given my attention span). It also lets me think a lot about the ways in which my work is so greatly shaped by the fact that I started out in rape education. You see, for me, rape education and prevention is a tangible thing. It's not as abstract or theoretical as oppression theory or even the "simple" isms (i.e. racism, sexism, classism, ageism, etc.). It's something that happens and something should and needs to be done about it. That is not to say that the isms shouldn't be eradicated either, but I'm just saying that rape seems to be something sort of, kind of manageable (but yet, so overwhelmingly not. ugh). This tangibility and the fact that every rape is someone's individual story (whereas sometimes instances of an ism could be seen as something less individual, more institutional, etc.) leads me to approach all of these things with a sort of empathy as though I'm dealing solely with individuals. This may or may not be a problem. I don't know yet. it probably is a problem, or at least will be in the long run because the way I think about it requires me to assign a problem to someone/something I care about. Selfish, much? Anyway, re-approaching* the issue of rape from this stance has been sort of eye-opening and overall good (I think) for me to re-evaluate the ways in which I should approach the other issues I care about.

--Reading blogs...like it's my job (which in some ways, it sort of is). I REALLY enjoy blogs. I enjoy blogging. I enjoy everything about blogs, from the little tidbits of information you can glean unwittingly to the tone of blogs (which very much mimics my style of living - pretty casual and conversational). But sometimes those tidbits of information on blogs make me RAGE. Especially some of the articles on sites like Feministing.com and other feminist sites which highlight both wins in the realm of feminism but also EPIC FAILS in the fight to maintain a Just society. For instance, first thing this morning, Facebook notified me about this article on female genital mutilation that is occurring not only in the US, but IN THE NAME OF RESEARCH!? WHAT........THE..............FUCK! (and I say that with utmost respect to my readers). Seriously?! This article went viral through my newsfeed where every one of my Vagina Monologues Ladies picked up on it in outrage (clearly). It's this sort of shit that we think happens elsewhere and we spend time speaking out against when our own (probably overpaid) scholars our instigated and perpetuating it here....FUUUUUUUUUUUhhh. If this isn't enough to incite riots in the street (which it should) - Feministing also linked to Louisiana's new legislation require ultrasounds before abortions. Yes, please make this ultimately life-changing and excruciating decision (which in all likelihood was not a split second decision) that much more difficult for someone to bear. please. BUT not to bring you all down with such crap nonsense, there are also highlights, like a particularly intelligent woman who is graduating high school while doing an experiment that includes Seventeen Magazine. If you haven't read her blog about this, do it. You'll probably learn something (and fight adultism at the same time. Two-for-one - WIN!).

--Planning our move. We're moving in mid-July to a new (unfurnished) place. Which then requires us to make large purchases like a sofa, washer and dryer, desks, etc. On top of all of that, we are moving from 2 different locations, really. Here in Champbana and also our parents' houses. This complicates a lot of things, too. Not unmanageably, but just enough that it is kinda sorta stressful and requires a decent amount of foresight.

--more WEDDING stuff. I know, the phases of my wedding "planning" are so sporatic, it's ridiculous. BUT I have been doing some research on photogs (though I would love for Ms. Crystal Wasson to do our wedding as her first). I've also been scoping out some dress designs that I may or may not wanna wear. And also just trying to think about how we want the day to feel (which includes incessantly scoping out reception sites...annoying). This also includes reading A Practical Wedding (the blog that I've been doting on) habitually.  Two years seems like such a long time (especially when I consider that the grad program that I haven't even started yet is a whole 2 years long).

--Working. At the job that I absolutely love and will miss dearly. Not because of the work so much - though I must say that getting to work within the realm of social justice, even if it is just scheduling rooms to have meetings about social justice is extremely rewarding work (for me...not for everyone) - but rather because of the people I get to work with daily. Seriously. My boss sent me a Dinosaur Comic which then led to me spending hours looking at more Dinosaur Comics. And that's just the sort of relationship we have. Which I love. It's going to suck when I have to have a legit business professional relationship with a boss (read: non-friendship) - I don't even know if I am capable of such things. Hurumph.

--Growing up. This is the worst part about what I've been doing which sort of encompasses all of the last points (duh) but also includes things like meeting up with friends from college for the last (or close to last) time before we all go our separate ways and figuring out budgets and savings. Planning for the next couple of years and realizing that, holy shit, I won't be living at Mom's house for a month over winter break and I may not be spending the night there on Christmas Eve. What?! I'm going to be inviting my parents and Ben's parents over to our place for dinners. Like adults do. We're going to have an office in this new place. *shudder*..*squeal*..I'm scared but super excited. What does that even mean? Is this a condition I should get checked out?

Anyway- I've decided that these novellas are ridiculously long, if not unfocused. I'm going to attempt (and I say this loosely) to make a list of blog topics. And perhaps institute a weekly or bi-weekly schedule. We'll see how this works out. be patient. I'm bad at habit forming and routine.

*Not that I ever left or stopped caring about the issue of rape, I just distanced myself for a bit. It's hard to do all of that work at once.

that's it. Whew! Did you make it! Did you skip some? (Be honest, it doesn't sting too bad).
Always and forever,