Adulthood: A period also known as Shit Just Got Real

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A lot of people claim that adulthood is easy once you get the hang of it. Those people could just be liars. Or maybe being an adult isn’t that hard, and I’m the only one who still has to look up information like “Why do I have to drink water?” What if I drink a lot of Cactus Cooler? Water is the main ingredient in my favorite beverage. I also consume a lot of milkshakes. Milk comes from cows, and cows drink water.

I asked myself a long time ago what I really valued, and when I let all of the bullshit fall away, I realized that not dying was important to me. That’s why I devote so much time to thinking about important issues like water consumption and lesser items like manners and responsibility get the shaft. How important is it that I remember my brother’s birthday or pay my taxes on time if I’m dead due to dehydration?

Adulthood is not easy. It is so goddamn fucking hard. There are so many moving parts, especially when you are responsible for the happiness and well-being of a child. Motherhood + Adulthood = Shit just got real. Also, if you’re saddled with Character Bumps like laziness or slowpokiness (slowpokeness? slowpoke-itis?), then just go ahead and eat three slices of white bread like I’m doing right now. It’s a longer road for us, and we need the carbs and preservatives.

I’m not a proficient traveler, but…actually, there’s no but. I’m not a proficient traveler. If I had to guess which part of traveling I fuck up more-planning or execution-I’d say it’s an even split. Sometimes, I bungle both sides in one trip. I don’t think it’s a good idea to let Sometimes Adults travel on their own.

Last weekend, I went to San Francisco to attend the book launch party of my buddy, Ghetto Genius. I didn’t bother looking up my exact flight schedule or checking in early online because I was preoccupied with other activities like laying down. Friday morning, after repeated texts and emails from friends who were also flying in for the event, I searched my inbox for the confirmation email.

I wasn’t immediately alarmed when I couldn’t find the confirmation. No big deal. I could just look up my travel itinerary through the booking site. Then, I realized I was facing a few roadblocks. I couldn’t quite remember: 1) Which site I had used to book the ticket and 2) Which airline I was flying.

I started to panic, so I did what I thought was best. I laid down. Then, I texted three friends to ask, “Hey, did I ever tell you that I ACTUALLY booked the ticket or did I only say that I was THINKING about booking it?”

All three responded with variations of “How the fuck would I know?” If this situation has taught me anything, it’s that I need better friends.

I tried to sound casual as I spoke to the reservations lady at one of the airlines. “I’m pretty sure I have a flight today. I can’t find the confirmation email and I’m not 100% certain that it’s your airline. I also don’t know what time I’m flying out or if I really booked the ticket. Would you please check for me?”

“I bet you get phone calls like this all the time,” I added during the silence as she checked.

“Not to this extent, no.”

That admission might have made other people feel bad about themselves, but here’s the thing: It is impossible to be good at everything. Adulthood isn’t about being perfect. Just pick one thing that’s important to you (e.g. hydration) and dive into it. Make it your passion. Let that motherfucker blossom and grow.

P.S. Turns out, I *did* have a ticket to SF. It was wonderful to see J-Wunder and the Ghetto Genius Crew again. For pictures of the book launch party and other not-seen-on-this-blog snapshots, follow along on Instagram (username: flourishinprogress). For (t)hug life thoughts, “like” the Flourish in Progress Facebook page.

P.P.S. J-Wunder’s book Wait…What?!: Life Advice From A Ghetto Genius officially released today and already ranks in the Top 100 Humor Books in Love/Sex/Marriage on Amazon. So fucking proud of you. Nothing but love, homie.

artwork: Richie Stewart for Wander

Monday Dare (& Giveaway!): I see you on that Facebook Grind

Every week, I challenge myself to a Monday Dare. Click on the link to see the complete list of Monday Dares or to learn more about its origin.

This week: Put down the goddamn phone

Sometimes, I like to play “What Would You Save If Your House Were Burning Down And You Could Only Take Three Things And Don’t Say Your Heirloom Dining Room Table Cuz Ain’t No One Strong Enough To Carry A Goddamn Solid Oak Table” with my friends. I’ve overheard a few snickers and complaints about the length of the title, but I don’t let it get to me. Hateful words often stem from jealousy. Not everyone has a flair for Game Naming.

My mint-condition collection of Yo! MTV Raps trading cards were part of My Three until recently when I had all the good ones matted and framed. I’ll be the first to admit my physical limitations. My shoulder muscles aren’t developed enough to carry an extremely large Rap Shrine.

I’d save Cal’s baby book even though I stopped updating it when she was four months old because clearly, I’m just too lazy to do even one thing right for my only child. Whenever friends and family ask to see recent pictures of Cal, I just tell them to “Facebook that shit, motherfucker.”

I thought about saying some socially acceptable answers for my other items, but that’s not how our friendship works, and I honor that.

I would save my iPhone. Everyone always responds with three items, but I don’t need that many. When you’ve got a mostly empty baby book and your best friend, what more do you need?

Vincent (don’t even try to pretend that your phone doesn’t have a name too) and I have been through a lot. We recently took a trip to San Francisco together:

I saved this picture on my computer as BestBuddies.jpg. It probably would have been a much better shot if my three friends from the Ghetto Genius Crew weren’t crowded around us. Jay Wunder, the Ghetto Genius himself, wrote afterwards on his site:Flo-Rich was glued to her fucking phone Facebooking, Twittering and Instagramming so much that Anonymous pulled her ass to the side and said she was two posts away from a goddamn intervention. 

I made an effort to keep Vincent in my purse the next evening, but my hands weren’t used to being unoccupied. My ears weren’t used to the silence. The constant ding of emails and texts and tweets and notifications from Facebook and Instagram and Words with Friends and phone calls and weather alerts is what lets me know I’M ALIVE, BITCHES.

I slipped away and locked myself in a bathroom stall. Maybe I took too long, but I’m sure there are perfectly good explanations for being in a public restroom for 47 minutes, none of which I could think of when I heard a knock on the stall door: “I SEE YOU ON THAT FACEBOOK GRIND. PUT DOWN YOUR PHONE.”The first step is admitting I have a problem. That’s what I learned from my friend H-Bomb during my intervention inside the women’s restroom at O’Reilly’s

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I FUCKING LOVE PRESENTS giveaway #3

I fucking love presents. Maybe you do too. To celebrate this holiday season, I’ll be doing a giveaway each week until the end of the year. Get connected on the Flourish in Progress Facebook page, on Instagram (username: flourishinprogress), and on Twitter (@ElizabethJLiu) for giveaway updates, (t)hug life thoughts, pictures, and other random shit.

This week: MNKR “Fuck the Fuckers” T-shirts Giveaway

I proudly wear this t-shirt in public all the time. Except when I have to go to PTA meetings. Then, I’ll throw a delicate cardigan over it, and all you can read is “UC H CKE.” Yesterday, I bumped into Kandace, one of the brains behind MNKR’s fierce line of apparel and accessories, and she generously offered TWO Fuck the Fuckers t-shirts (one women’s, one men’s) for this giveaway. Thanks, Kandace!

TO ENTER: Leave a comment below with the three things you would save if we were playing “What Would You Save If Your House Were Burning Down And You Could Only Take Three Things And Don’t Say Your Heirloom Dining Room Table Cuz Ain’t No One Strong Enough To Carry A Goddamn Solid Oak Table.” Only comments left on THIS POST qualify. I’ll announce a winner next Monday.LAST WEEK’S SKULL NECKLACE WINNER: Danielle with the numbers 0212 in your email address. Please email me at flourishinprogress at gmail dot com.

first image via pinterest

Monday Dare: Cashin’ out


Every week, I challenge myself to a Monday Dare. Click on the link to see the complete list of Monday Dares or to learn more about its origin.

This week: Spend, spend, spend

Most of us can pinpoint an event which impacts us so profoundly that anything to the left of that Moment in our timeline is known as the Before and everything to the right is known as the After. I thought I had my Moment when I became a mother at 19. Then, when I married Harv, it seemed to me that having two Moments was also a possibility. If only I had been able to see into the future.

I won some money yesterday. I usually don’t throw figures around, but I’m comfortable being candid with you. Plus, I’m pretty good at bragging, so I’ll just go ahead and tell you that in one day, JUST ONE DAY, I pulled in a little over $14 working the slot machine grind in Las Vegas. People say that the house always wins. Who are these people? Do they know about me? If you want, you can share my story: about how someone you know went to Vegas as an ordinary person and came back a winner. How good things happen to good people. Use my name. I don’t need to be anonymous.

I understand a lot of things today that I didn’t back then yesterday morning. It’s becoming clear who my real friends are. This morning, “Sally” called about a lunch date. Assessing a situation objectively is one of my talents, so I immediately picked up on her real motives. It seems odd that I posted a picture on Instagram of my first payout (three almost-crisp dollar bills) yesterday and she’s suddenly eager to enjoy a meal together, don’t you think? I listened to some bullshit about how she “wants to catch up” since we haven’t seen each other in a few weeks. Even though “Sally” asked repeatedly about my availability, I remained noncommittal.

“I just can’t. I think we both know why.”

“Sally” is probably one of many I will have to cut out of my life. I’m not going to lie. It hurts. To distract myself, I’ve spent a lot of time looking at the windfall (a ten dollar bill, four one dollar bills, and two nickels). “This is mine,” I tell myself over and over again. It’s been fun arranging the bills on my dark hardwood floor: first in descending value, then in ascending value, and finally with the two shiny coins as a centerpiece. A little lonely, but fun.

Unlike “Sally,” my family has been really supportive. When they congratulated me, I could tell by the ease in their voice that they genuinely meant it. It’s hard not to get jealous when fantastic things happen to people around you. Harv and Cal are encouraging me to spend the entire stack on myself. It seems weird to me, but fuck it…YOLO. Carpe diem. Show me the money.

(Note: I feel like it’s not really cool to say “YOLO.” But I guess that rule doesn’t apply to me because I’m rich now.)

Have you ever won anything?
What should I buy? This money is burning a hole in my pocket.

P.P.S. But hey, I’m not going to be one of those lazy rich people. I’ll still be working the Facebook grind on the Flourish in Progress Facebook page.
image via blueq.com