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Chelsea Bradshaw on… Clutter

As I cleaned out some old things from my desk that I no longer need, I found my Daily Devotional from the church. I open to today’s date and read, “Let the Spirit renew your… attitudes.” The passage that followed continued to talk about how to rid yourself of clutter, both physical and emotional.

I’ve spent the last month doing nearly nothing but getting rid of clutter. With my mom being sick and my dad now operating on a single income, which has also been cut, my parents have come to the realization that it’s time to downsize. The kids are gone, my dad’s getting too old to do the housework and yardwork himself, etc., etc. So I’ve spent my summer so far cleaning out my parents’ basement and storage sheds, putting aside items for a yardsale in a few weeks, and carting dozens of bags of clothes among other things to Goodwill. It’s been exhausting to say the least.

As for emotional clutter? That I have a harder time ridding myself of. While throwing things away tonight, I also went through my ExBox. Threw away the photo, the letters, the receipts, everything. Gone. But there’s far more emotional clutter than just the reside of some love gone wrong relationships.

A segment from the passage in the book reads, “The clutter you need to lose includes: believing that you’re alone, trying to please everybody, feeling insecure, putting yourself down, needing everybody to like you, jumping to negative conclusions before you know the facts, thinking you’re always right, recalling all the times you’ve messed up, wanting to know how it all turns out, needing to have all the answers, worrying that if you let go of the memorabilia you’ll lose the memories, agonizing that you’re not rich enough, good enough or smart enough, surrounding yourself with people who remember the bad times and not the good, making energy-sucking comparisons, viewing life like a movie instead of participating, believing that your best days are over, waiting at all times for the right moment, fearing that you will look foolish, focusing on negative type-casting…”

I’ve done all of the above at least once in my life; many of these I do every day. Many of these have been why the past few months have been difficult, why I hit the bottom and was prepared to give up a lot of things that I’d worked hard for because I was letting other things get in the way. I still have a long way to go, but I’m making this the summer of de-cluttering and rebuilding myself into a better, stronger person.

A Letter From Chelsea Bradshaw

Dear Boy,

I assume by now you’ve realized that I have feelings for you.  Just like I’ve realized that you need space.  And I know that I’m not good at giving you that.  

To you, it may seem like we talk too much.  But to me, the moments that I’m talking to you, I’m happy.  And you’re the reason for that.  You should know that.  

To you, me talking to your friends might seem like I’m trying to find out information about you or find out what you say about me.  But to me, I want to get along with your friends because they’re important to you.  I just want them to like me so they won’t try to persuade you not to.

To you, I may Facebook creep you too much because I look at the profiles of the girls that you “like” their pictures or comment on their statuses.  But to me, they’re prettier than me or funnier than me, and I’m afraid you’ll realize that too.

To you, being insecure and jealous all the time probably seems like I’m psycho.  But to me, I’ve never been this insecure or jealous before with any other guy.  I’m just scared to death to lose you.  You are the most important person in the world to me.

To you, telling you I’d rather see you shirtless than Ryan Gosling may seem like I’m trying too hard.  But to me, that’s the truth.  Because when I look at you, I see the most incredibly attractive guy in the world.

Maybe I’m too crazy about a guy I’m not even yet dating.  Maybe I am totally smitten by you.  And you probably could do better than me.  

I just want you to know that I’m trying very hard to change these things.  I know it’s not healthy.  So I’m going to sit back and wait for you to talk to me once in awhile.  But you also need to remember that a move in Words With Friends is not you talking to me first.  Text me, call me, make some sort of effort so I know you’re in this as much as I am.

And as long as you’re willing to accept these flaws and be patient as I try to become a better version of me, I’m going to fight for you.

Chelsea Bradshaw on… the happy ever after

I’ve spent the weekend not feeling well, laying in bed watching Netflix chick flicks. Today, I’m watching season one of Grey’s Anatomy.  I’ve come to the conclusion that this is what makes chicks so crazy.  

As children, we watch Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, The Little Mermaid, and all those Disney movies where the girl finds Prince Charming, all her problems disappear, and she lives happily ever after.  As adults we watch movies where either 1) a girl meets a boy she’s expected to never fall for, they fall in love, and live happily ever after, or 2) a guy and a girl hookup, and they unexpectedly fall in love and live happily ever after.

And then guys actually wonder what’s wrong with us and why we have these crazy explanations.  HELLO?! 

Your perfect guy isn’t Noah Calhoun.  He doesn’t exist in real life.  Your perfect guy isn’t going to say all the right things at the right time, constantly tell you he loves you, and want to spend every moment with you.  In fact, if a guy treated you like the ones in movies do, you’d call them clingy and dump them.

Chances are your perfect guy is someone you never thought you’d fall for.  He’s going to say ridiculous things, act like a goof ball, and he probably won’t look like Ryan Gosling.  But you’re going to think he’s better, that he’s the greatest guy in the world.  Because the perfect guy doesn’t exist, but he’s going to be perfect for you. <3

Chelsea Bradshaw on… Cyber Harassment

We all know the stories of cyber harassment.  We hear the cases of people like Amanda Todd who are bullied terribly online.  We know it happens, but we never think that it can happen to us.

A friend talked me into joining an online dating site awhile back.  I started talking to this guy who lives in Connecticut, has a high-paying job in New York, and modeled to pay his way through college.  I was newly single and liked the attention, so I gave him my email address and later my cell phone number.  

He asked me to send him some nude pics, so I did.

Then he asked me to Skype with him…nude.  He said that he would pay for college if I did it for him.  That threw up some red flags.  I knew it was wrong.  I didn’t want to do it.  But when I said no, he became very angry and threatened me.

I stopped answering his texts/calls, blocked his emails and any other form of communication I had with him.  It all died down and I thought it was over.

Then this week, he found me on Twitter and started following me.  He tweeted me saying that he still had the photos and thought I would find it funny.  He then began asking me to send him more.  I told him that the things I’d done in the past was a mistake, that I was trying to move on with my life and new potential relationship and didn’t want my past to ruin that.

He then threatened me that if I don’t send him more photos, he’ll post the old ones on Twitter so “twitter and ur bf can see a lot more of you.”

I’m a journalism student.  We talk about this kind of things in media law and ethics classes all the time.  But no one ever tells you what to do when it happens to you.

I made a stupid, naive mistake.  All I wanted was to forget it happened.  

Chelsea Bradshaw on… New Loves and Heartaches

It’s been a very long time since I’ve written anything, mostly because I haven’t really had much to talk about.  But now, I have a lot on my mind and need somewhere to talk about it.

I met this guy about a month ago, well, I knew him because we have a class together, but we didn’t start talking until the very last day of September.  It was a Sunday, I was late for a meeting that he also happened to be attending.  I sat down next to him, and we started talking.  After that we started talking some before and after class, but not really enough to consider ourselves friends because honestly, we hardly knew anything about each other.

This is going to sound awful, but I kind of got the feeling that he liked me, but I didn’t do anything about it.  I mean, I thought he was cute, but he’s not the type of guy that I normally would fall for.  I’ve always dated the “pretty boy” assholes who feel like they can get away with anything just because they’re good looking.  You know, the ones that every girl who meets them wants to date- I wanted to be that girl that everyone was jealous of.

But I finally found him on Facebook, and we got to know each other a little better.  I realized we actually have things in common and loved his sense of humor.  Then one night last week, I was out with my friends at a bar, and he showed up.  I was too nervous to talk to him because earlier that day I’d realized I actually liked him.  He didn’t stay long, so after he left, my friends thought it would be a good idea to send him an extremely forward Facebook message.  The next morning, I made up the excuse that I was really drunk and didn’t even remember sending it, even though it wasn’t true.  

But it worked—we talked non-stop for the next four days.  My face lit up every time I saw his name pop up on my phone or my Facebook chat sound would go off and it was him.  I forgot what that felt like.  It’d been so long since I’d been happy like that.

That Friday I invited him over to my apartment, and after an extremely long walk that I would never attempt, he did.  Again, he didn’t stay long because it was pretty late, but he met me out for Halloween on Saturday night.  He was such a gentleman- he was nice to my friends, he gave me his jacket because I was freezing- the sweet things that guys are supposed to do, but I never had done for me.

Well around midnight, my friends wanted to go to a bar, but this guy is a few months short of 21, so I stayed with him instead of joining my friends.  We walked around for awhile, held hands, and eventually kissed- and I mean one of those wonderful first kisses with someone that you see in the movies, the ones that you feel building up, the ones that make you feel absolutely amazing when you’re lips finally touch.  And after making out for quite awhile, we decided to head back to my apartment.

I don’t regret hooking up with him. It was an absolutely perfect night, and if I had to do it all over again, I wouldn’t change a thing.  I was so comfortable with him, I actually fell asleep while we were cuddling, which is weird because I’ve never fallen asleep with a guy, not even ones that I actually dated.

But this whole situation sucks very, very bad for me.  He’s still hung up over an ex, so for right now, nothing’s going to happen with us.  We’re going to be “just friends,” which from my past experiences always ends with me getting EXTREMELY hurt.

The worst part was when he was getting ready to leave at 5 the next morning.  I bawled like a baby that hasn’t yet been acclimated to being alone.  I actually begged him not to leave.  It’s so different being the one that’s being left.  I’m so used to doing it at the guy’s house, I’ve never had to watch someone leave me after such an intimate thing.  It was honestly the hardest thing I ever had to do.  I texted him while he was on his walk home, and said “I miss you.”  I didn’t realize until that night how much I had fallen for him already.

And then today on my way to class, I had an actual panic attack over being afraid to see him.  Which I still don’t understand because we’ve still been talking non-stop since it happened.  I ran into the bathroom to calm myself down, the room started spinning, my vision was blurry, I started shaking, and breathing extremely hard… I assume it was a panic attack, but I honestly don’t know because I’ve never had one before. Anyway, I was sitting on the stairs, still shaking, when he walked through the door and immediately walked over to me.  He sat beside me, and we just talked like normal.  He still sat beside me in class.  It may seem like an awkward situation, but honestly, I’m better when we’re talking.  

As glad as I am that we are able to still talk and be friends, it kills me.  But it’s when we’re not talking that it hurts the most.  It’s when I’m lying in bed at night, wishing he was still lying beside me.  Or when I’m sitting in class, just watching him, and in my head I’m seeing him back here in my bed… with me running my fingers through his hair, kissing his lips, his hands touching me places I haven’t been touched in a year… 

It’s so weird to me that we’ve known each other for such a short time, but I feel this strongly about a guy that I wasn’t even sure I liked at first.  But now, not being with him hurts, like actually, physically hurts.  I was waiting for the shuttle back to my apartment after class, standing where we were when he first kissed me, not even caring that I was getting drenched by the rain.

There’s this empty place in me now, and I’d give anything to have him for myself, a real relationship, not just the physical stuff.  He’s the kind of guy that I could finally fall in love with.  When we were together Saturday night, there were things that he told me that he said he hadn’t told anyone else.  And although I realize he had been drinking, he wasn’t drunk enough to not remember that night- he remembers every part of it.

He promises that I’m not just a one night stand… that there’s a chance that while he’s figuring out what he wants right now, it could work out in my favor, but he can’t make any promises.  I know no one knows what the future holds (boy do I wish I did right now), but if anyone can offer some solace or advice, it would be greatly appreciated.

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