New ‘Do, New You!

Sometimes I get confused.

When looking at online sources or magazines for potential new hair styles, I sometimes think that by getting the same haircut as a celebrity or model, that I will look EXACTLY like that celebrity or model. The delusion was a bit thicker in my younger years and that is why I ended up with misguided hair styles and/or colors at times.  For example:

Blonde, short and curly? Really? Brilliant.

2003 blonde, short and curly? Brilliant. Also – nice roots.

And I was PROBABLY trying to look like this:

Because I adore Drew Barrymore.

Because I adore Drew Barrymore.

Or sometimes I have grown my hair out super long to try to get what I now refer to as that voluminous Adele look…a look that my hair will never accommodate for. Such is life, I suppose!

I’ve gotten a bit better about this and now tend to at least make sure the hairstyle I’m drooling over is displayed on someone with a rounder face…or a “moon face” as a dear old friend once termed it (it’s cool – she has one, too!).

That being said, I am getting my hair cut tomorrow and am feeling the pull to do something a little different than what I’ve been doing just to have something fresh going on. New ‘do, new you!  However, with that pull comes ridiculous ideas. Like bangs.

Exhibit A: Jennifer Lawrence

Do I really want bangs? Or do I just want her face?

Do I really want bangs? Or do I just want her face? And that body? And that dress?

Exhibit B: Zooey Deschanel

Do I want bangs? Or do I just want *her* face?

First off, my hair is not that long, not that thick, and not that color. Second, having Zooey Deschanel’s bangs will *not* magically give me a New Girl situation. So, while I’m at it, I should stop looking on Craigslist for apartment openings with three dudes. I don’t really want to go there.

Exhibit C: The Last Time I had Legitimate Bangs

Do I look happy about those bangs? NOPE!

Do I look happy about those bangs? NOPE! There is a reason.

Other styles that I am considering that are probably not achievable without a significant amount of work, product, and selling parts of my soul to the devil:

My skin is not nearly that luminous.

I think I just want her skin? (is that creepy?)

A bob AND bangs? Do we HATE ourselves? Why is this even on your Pinterest board?

A bob AND bangs? Do we HATE ourselves? Why is this even on my Pinterest board?

So here’s the thing. I write all this now knowing full well that there is a 50/50 chance of me doing something a bit ballsier/playing it safe when I get to the salon tomorrow. And I will continue to look at pictures tonight and tomorrow morning but most likely I’m going to go for a long, angled bob.

But in my heart of hearts, I will always want my hair to look like this:

Should I give up? Or should I just keep chasing pavements? Even if it leads not to this hair?

Should I give up? Or should I just keep chasing pavements? Even if it leads not to this hair?

What do YOU think? What style would you like me to try? What style have YOU always wanted to try but keep yourself from doing?

Happy Found Ya, Got Ya, Takin-Ya-Home-Without-Thinkin-Bout-It-Much Day, Fabs!

Four years ago I was touring with a theatre company called Wandering Souls in a production of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night. Part of what made Wandering Souls brilliant is that its purpose was to bring shows to underserved communities in DC – nursing homes, homeless shelters, etc. – and so on September 14th, 2010, my castmates and I found ourselves in SE preparing for a show at an after school program for at-risk youth.  A group of us were chatting before entering the venue when one of my colleagues saw a kitten (surrounded by young kids) about to run into a road. And she was NOT having that.  So she politely excused herself and came back to the group with the kitten in her arms, curious as to what to do with it; the kids had told her that their mom had thrown the cat out and my castmate already had two cats at home herself so could not take another.

Without thinking much, I said: “I’ll take it!”

I’d never had a cat before – let alone a kitten – but have a bleeding heart and was a few months out of a messy romantic situation feeling that I needed some sort of anchor and source of affection. So I took home a semi-feral feLion. And thus began the epic adventures of Fabian Raven Ittameh Bittameh Kittameh, The Duchess of Things and myself.

First night with the Faba - curled up all cute-like on my lap.

First night with the Faba – curled up all cute-like on my lap.

Fabs is by no means the easiest cat.  She’s gone through phases of extreme violence-against-people (mainly me) and stretches of peeing on my bed – which is the *last* thing you want to come home to at the end of a long day. She is not friendly with others, yet asks for their attention and I have to give warnings to anyone who enters my home regarding her erratic behavior.

And I leave notes for repair men that look something like this:



And have created a way to track attack patterns.

I can't even really excuse this...

I can’t even really excuse this…but 41 days is pretty good!!

Don’t get me wrong. Fabs is affectionate in her own quirky way – she sleeps with me, sometimes on top of me, likes to cuddle on the sofa and be pet; occasionally I get head nuzzles.  She gets really upset if I have been away from home for too long and will want to curl up on my chest and near my face for comfort.  She loves to chase lasers and play with her toys; sometimes she’ll drag her toys into my room in the middle of the night in an attempt to get me to play. Not to mention she is more entertaining than any other animal I’ve ever met. Most recently, I switched her on a low-grain diet. I was sitting in the family room when I heard commotion in the kitchen and I went running in to find that she had dug into the cabinet and pulled out whole wheat pasta which she proceeded to gnaw on.  Seriously?!  Seriously.  She’s a smarty-pants, goofball with a slight anger-management/impulse control issue and I love her.

I mean – look at this face:

She thinks she's pretty.

She thinks she’s pretty.

Fabian – in all her semi-feral glory – has also taught me so much. It’s weird to say, but I have learned more about dedication and love and persistence and honoring promises from this KitBit than from any person. During some of Fab’s “dark times”, people encouraged me to give her up; to let her go to a different home or to give her over to a shelter.  And during one stretch, I was at my wit’s end feeling like I wasn’t giving her the right home and maybe she’d be better elsewhere. But the thing is, no matter how frustrating and difficult things got, I had made a promise that I would take care of her for the rest of her life. And I’m big on keeping promises.

Things aren’t always simple with my main kittenlady, though they’ve been better in the last two years. But at the end of the day, Fabs is my family and I would be missing out on something really special if she was not a part of my life.

So, rock on with your bad (please be good!) self, Fabian!  And happy 4th Welcome Home anniversary, you feisty feLion, you!

A Fauxdult Girl’s Favorite Things: Break-up Edition

Here is my Oprah-style favorites list for what you need in the wake of a break as you try to adjust to a new approach of living your life.


Flowers – Buy flowers of a non-romantic variety – like gerbera daisies in bright orange – and put them somewhere you will see them as soon as you enter your home. They brighten the mood and are a subtle reminder that many good things that bring happiness are not designed to last forever –  and that is a-OK; in part, that is what makes them beautiful.

Furballs – There is nothing better than curling up with your highly sensitive, typically grumpy but now oddly affectionate cat, playing with your fosters, or working with some shelter adoptables to help ease your soul. Feeling sad? Hold something furry! Tears coming? Let a pup lick them away – they like the salt!

Mambo is the best therapy dog and she gives amazing kisses.

And you thought you wouldn’t be kissed again for a long time… look at that!


Elastic waistbands – Ladyboo – you are going to want to be comfortable. Loose fitting clothing and loungewear are your friends. Don’t judge – wear anything that makes you feel comfy. Bust out those faux business pants and skirts that look like they have real-people fasteners like zippers and buttons but secretly have elastic and wear the hell out of them. But make sure you feel GOOD about what you are wearing. Don’t wear sweatpants too much. That will make you feel worse. Yoga pants are your buddy at home.

Deep Steep sugar scrub in passionfruit-guava – This stuff is luxurious –  it makes your body feel amazing and your skin super-smooth while smelling absolutely delicious. It provides a nice escape for a few minutes in the shower and is a great way to Treat. Yo. Self. Because you certainly deserve to Treat. Yo. Self.


Delicious and cruelty-free


Bourbon – Bulleit or a bottle of Four Roses (better when brought by one of your Meg(h)ans). Mix with bitters (better when brought by a friend). Pop some star-shaped ice cubes in there and a glitter swizzle stick and breathe. Enjoy in moderation and best when shared with a buddy. Bourbon is God’s way of letting you know that He/She exists and that humans are deserving of love. Relax.

Waterproof mascara – Tarte’s Lights, Camera, Splashes! waterproof mascara – cruelty free and phenomenal.

Cry-proofing perfection

Cry-proofing perfection.


Privacy settings on social media – Use them. Privatize albums and photos. Deactivate accounts for stretches of time. Limit your own access to people’s feeds and streams and change alert settings. Technology is pretty intense and there are ways to make sure you don’t see things you don’t think you can handle yet. Do not be ashamed to use all the bells and whistles to your advantage.

Smudge/Sage – All aboard the Ritual Train to Hippy Dippy Break-up Town, USA!  Doing something to clear the space and create a blank slate is useful if not for any other reason than to clear your own brain. After the Ritual Boxing of Items and Ritual Exchanging of Things, when your physical space is clear of tangible items reminding you of what is now past, burn this shizz around your apartment and make intentions for now and the future. Breathe.

To new beginnings, a clean space, a clear mind, an open heart, a strong spine, and remembering to be kind to and respectful of the obstacles this year has brought.

To new beginnings, a clean space, a clear mind, an open heart, a strong spine, and remembering to be kind to and respectful of the obstacles this year has brought.


Family and Friends – I have touched on this before, but let people know about the break-up and be honest with them about what you need. Message it out to your nearest and dearest and others who will be affected by your lack of full presence in the immediate. It is OK.  Most everyone has been there and will understand.  There will also be lots of hugs. “And YOU get a hug! And YOU get a hug!  AND YOU GET A HUG! EVERYBODY GETS HUGS!!”

INSTRUCTIONS by Neil Gaiman – Read this poem. Read it and take heart.

"Trust your heart, and trust your story."

“Trust your heart, and trust your story.”


Respect – Respect what is past. Respect the relationship you had. Treat it with care because it is broken and fragile. When you get sad or mad or frustrated about losing someone you love, check yourself and temper your response. Be human.  Be honest. But be kind and loving. To yourself and to the person and relationship you lost. Never stop giving respect. Ever. And respect yourself and the wishes of others enough to have a clean break and start moving on.


Go Home 2014 You Are Drunk … And My Friends Will Walk You Home

*The original content of this post has been altered – sorry for the change. 10:00pm 9/2/2014*

I debated on whether to post about this topic. But I am blogging about my life and this is a BIG shift. I also don’t believe in being super vague and talking about things without talking about them – or therefore writing about things without writing about them.  That’s just not who I am or what I do. So this may be uncomfortable for some in my social circles but here goes …

2014 needs to go home because it is drunk.

I am done with it. Seriously.

I have been dealing with a lot of personal stuff on and off for the better part of 2014. It’s been a rollercoaster ride of emotions and ever-changing next steps. Every time some new obstacle presents itself, it feels like it has to be the last twist or drop or loop-de-loop. There can’t be many more shoes to drop because The Man Upstairs has to, at some point, take pity on my clan and lighten the load. And I don’t believe God to be a footwear loving octopus – the shoes have to run out at some point.

Then a few Saturdays ago, after a little over 4 years of knowing each other and 3 years and 9 months of togetherness my boyfriend broke up with me out of what seemed like the clear blue. Granted we were not perfect – no relationship ever is because humans are not perfect – but I thought we were both in it to win it and in love. I was in it and in love. But through no fault of anyone’s we were not…not fully. And we hadn’t been for a little bit of time on and off. As kind and caring and respectful as the conversation was handled once it began, this is hard news to process. Even harder maybe because you can’t hate someone for how they do or do not feel – that’s no one’s choice and no one is to blame. It just is.

So I’ve been in mourning. It’s a death. It’s a loss. I’m grieving.  And I’m slowly healing bit by bit. Emphasis on the slowly. I’m also learning a metric shit ton about myself and myself in relationships (in retrospect) and what I subconsciously knew vs. what I let myself be told or let myself believe because I wanted us to work . Because I had thought this was *it*.  I’m also not a person who lets go of words easily – even when the words are said in midnight moments between young people newly in love before they really know what they have gotten themselves into.  So shifting and adjusting my heart and my brain to life without the person who said certain words and was a daily part of my existence for almost 4 years and thinking of a future without him is just so ridiculously, overwhelmingly sad and hard.

Yippee skippy. A brand *new* rollercoaster to ride. A different kind of shoe to drop. Another reason why 2014 needs to go home and sober up.

But the thing that I have been so struck with and so insanely grateful for are the amazing people in my life.  It can be hard to ask for what you need when you are at your most vulnerable but it can be even harder to answer that bat-signal put out by a heart-shattered friend. People are not always comfortable with vulnerability.  And I don’t know if it’s because most of my friends are either artistic types or people who work with sick/vulnerable patients, but when I put out the bat-signal, my people rallied.  For personal stuff and now for the break-up.

Sometimes they rallied at 3am. Sometimes at 11pm. Sometimes they brought bourbon or kitten toys and took me out for dinner or ordered pizza in and let me snot all over them without once wincing. They have told me not to apologize for anything I’m feeling or for crying in public.  They have cleared my desk of relationship evidence before I returned to work. They have told me to take time off of work to take care of myself. They have distracted me when I’ve needed it and really listened to me when I’ve needed it. They have asked hard questions and given soft hugs and offered smart advice from things they’ve learned in their studies and life experiences. They have told me to “fuck off” when I say that I feel unloveable. They have encouraged me to wait a month on that tattoo and to not shave my head a la Britney circa 2007 (my face is just too round for that shizz) and to hold off on adopting a new cat and naming him Mr. Boyfriend.  And when I start feeling guilty for reacting to a break-up so strongly when my family is going through so much, my family has told me not to minimalize what I’m feeling because it’s like comparing apples and elephants. They have checked in with calls and texts and e-mails and puppy pictures and continue to do so.

I hurt. I hurt big now because I always feel my feelings in big ways. But I am so very, very lucky in so many, many ways.  And things will be OK. It’s just life. And life gets messy sometimes.  And when it gets messy, it’s great to know you have good people to help you through.

So thank you, friends. Thank you so much from the bottom of my heart and with my whole soul.

And though 2014 is drunk and needs to go home, my people are the good eggs who will walk 2014 to its doorstep and make sure it gets inside and to bed safe and sound with a glass of water and some aspirin waiting on the bedside table for when it wakes – hungover but feeling more hopeful for 2015.


**This article is not open for comments so please do not be offended if I do not approve anything you wish to leave on the wall.