Love and Friends and Family and Mawwiage - A Guest Blog Post from Cole Campbell

Hello, friends! Over the next few weeks, I am away for my wedding and honeymoon, so I've invited some of my favorite writers to keep you entertained in my absence! Enjoy!! 


Hello everyone!

My name is Cole and I’m here to do a guest post for Emelie while she’s getting married and gallivanting off to Scotland for her honeymoon with Fiancé/Husband. (I’m not 100% sure where in the line up my post will fall so I’m being purposefully vague with times whether or not you’re reading this before or after she’s actually married. But hey, it kinda makes me feel like I’m in an episode of Doctor Who a wee bit. Yeah, I know that does not actually makes a whole lot of sense but let me have it, okay? Okay.)

ANYWAY!

When Emelie first asked me if I wanted to do a guest post for her I was like, “Sure! Of course! That’s Awesome! I’ll totally do that!” Then we hung up FaceTime, I thought for a short moment and was like, “CRAAAAAAAAAP WHY DID I SAY YES TO THAT?! I WRITE FICTION. I DON’T WRITE ABOUT MYSELF HOW WHAT WHY DO I DO THIIIIIIS?!”

I took some time to calm down.

Later, when I asked Emelie if she had any topic or idea she wanted me to cover, I was much more subtle about my trepidation (I hope). She responded with, essentially, “Lighthearted and fun is good but be yourself and do you!” I was like, “Thanks, that helps!” (Translation: That was not helpful AT ALL). I’m very much ad-libbing this from memory right now but you get the idea. So I started pondering. And I realized that recent events in my life combined with Emelie’s impending/already-happened nuptials mean a very specific topic is rattling pretty consistently around in my brain. And that, dear readers of a blog that is not mine, is Love and Friends, or the Family You Choose.

I mean, it’s not a shocking revelation or idea at all really but friends are just pretty freakin’ awesome, aren’t they? You meet someone and go: You, good person, are just amazing and I want you in my life forever, okay? Sometimes it’s a longer, slow process. Sometimes it’s snap-of-the-fingers quick. Emelie, for instance? She and I were friends for about a month(ish) before she moved out to Connecticut. And yet, despite time and distance we have become even closer. It just clicked. Insta! Done! Boom! Friends for life and there was little choice.

Except, technically, we did have a choice. We could not have skyped regularly, texted and kept in contact. We could have drifted apart and I wouldn’t have gotten excited updates about this guy she met, who became Boyfriend, wouldn’t have gotten an excited FaceTime reveal-of-the-ring when he became Fiancé and wouldn’t be going to/have been at (seriously this not knowing where in time my article is existing is CONFUSING) their wedding to see him become HUSBAND.

We made a choice to be friends. To be Family By Choice. AND THAT IS A TRULY AWESOME THING.

But seriously, though.

You meet certain people and they just stick to you like glue, or tree sap or those little foam packing peanuts, and they help you navigate life day by day whether they are in the same house, same town, or states or oceans away. Maybe they are family by blood, or maybe not. Maybe it was a romantic relationship that became a friendship, because you look at that person and go: The friendship at the heart of all this is too ridiculously valuable to set to the side and this is gonna hurt like nothing else but it’s worth it. Maybe you’ve known each other for more than a decade. Or maybe you just met. Connections between people are really, super-duper weird and random and varied I’ve found.

AND THAT’S WHAT MAKES THEM SO GOOD. LIKE DOGS AND CATS. (Don’t know if that makes any sense at all. It does in my brain).

I guess, basically, what I’m trying to say, (however badly, drawn-outly and incoherently) is to love the people in your life, that Family of Friends. Celebrate them in the every day because that is where they are rooted, in their weirdness, in their flaws, in their strengths and all the reasons you love them unconditionally.

And if they are someone who does the same back, keep them around, okay? So that one day, when you’re old, you can sit on a porch, with a nice breeze wafting by, rocking in your rocking chairs, and crack dirty jokes and trade bad puns because you’re still as awkward, nerdy, awesome and in love with each other as you were in your twenties (or whenever it was you met).

Because I don’t know about you, but that sounds like a pretty amazing future to me.


Cole is a writer and bookseller with a background in theatre based out of northeast Ohio. He (controversially) does not drink coffee but loves tea, hiking, and animals of all kinds. You can read/see what he's up to @colehcampbell (Twitter) and @colehollander (instagram).

 

 


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An Acetone Intervention

Okay, soo..... We all know that I can't be trusted with anything even remotely involving risk, right? I mean, this is sort of all Fiancé's fault for casually thinking that I understood the dangers here. Allow me to explain.

Fiancé and I are getting married a week from tomorrow (AHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!) and we've been very DIY with this whole wedding thing. Many people have had to convince me that I cannot, in fact, do everything myself. Hiring people to do things is worth it, and while those people are correct and I am relieved that I won't be spending the morning of my wedding panicking about making flower crowns, there are still plenty of things that we are willing to do ourselves.

Things like... staining and painting the wooden signs that will be directing people toward parking and other wedding-related shenanigans.

It all seemed like a very good idea at the time and perhaps for normal, more stable and steady-handed people it still would be considered a good idea.

And let me be clear about the fact that I wasn't a complete idiot about this process. I made plenty of good decisions!

Smart choices made by me include:

  1. Doing this outside.
  2. Wearing clothes that I was prepared to ruin.
  3. Bringing beer to the space. (Fun fact: Grammarly was all "this should be Bringing beer to space" and ummm... STOP READING MY DIARY, GRAMMARLY.)
  4. Playing awesome tunes.

See? Already you're more confident in me than you thought you would be.

But let's return to one of those smart choices I mentioned: the clothes. Choice number 2. I was totally prepared to sacrifice my jean shorts and my Guns & Roses crop top. A few stain stains would only make them cooler, in my opinion. And I would like to take this opportunity to point out that Fiancé said nothing. He did not warn me, NOR DID HE TELL ME HOW AWESOME I LOOKED.

So we stained, and it was all "La, la, la, staining, staining, staining, la la la" and then we had to wait for that coat to dry, so I sat down on the blanket I brought out (great choice number 5, thank you very much) and I looked down at my legs and I was all "Oh cool!! Look, honey, I'M ALL SPECKLY!!!"

Fiancé was not entertained.

Fiancé: Holy crap, Emelie, no!!

Me: What? How do you not think this is awesome? My legs look like a dinosaur egg.

Fiancé: Babe, that's going to stain your skin.

Me: Yeah, but it's not like I'm not going to shower.

Fiancé: Emelie, I got some wood stain on my hand like ten years ago and it only just started to fade.

Me: ....No... But we're getting married next week! And then we're going on a honeymoon! I can't have dinosaur egg legs and feet for all that!

Fiancé: I agree.

Me: What do we do?!?

Fiancé then threw a wet paper towel at me and said "Start scrubbing. I'll be right back."

And then, while I got to work, he ran inside and returned shortly with a giant bowl of soapy water, a rag, a bottle of lotion, and a giant jug of acetone, which for some weird reason I didn't think to ask where he found it or why we have it, but apparently we do and I'm weirdly grateful. I picture Fiancé at the hardware store one day and seeing that and thinking "Who would ever need such a thing?" and then thinking about me and quietly sighing while he placed it in the cart because he just knew that one day I would probably do something that would require an acetone intervention (new band name?). Good call, honey.

And then Fiancé handed me a paper towel soaked in acetone and said "this is going to burn" right before he took his own acetone-soaked rag and started washing my feet as though I were Jesus and he a lowly prostitute.

And that's love, I think, especially because he managed to keep my pedicure in perfect condition, which is impressive that this stuff is the main ingredient in nail polish remover.

Oh, and yes, it burned. A lot. Hence the lotion. He's such a smart guy. The yin to my yang.

In other news, this is my final blog post before I'm married, which is nuts!! I'll be gone from the blog for the next three weeks, but I have a series of guest blog posts from AMAZING people coming at you while I'm away, so stick around and give them your love!

I love you all, friends. Keep being amazing and embrace your awkwardness. Muah!


This blog is able to remain ad-free because of the awesome community of Awkward Ambassadors on Patreon. If you’d like to become an Awkward Ambassador and receive special perks from me, please click here

I expect puppies and other updates.

A conversation I had with my Bestbian/maid of honor yesterday:

So... I think I'm on the right track here, right? Are my expectations too high?

In other news, it is June now, which means that my first ever Awkward Ambassadors have just gotten their first rewards for backing me on Patreon and I had so much fun putting them together. In fact, I had so much fun that I'm thinking about upping my game and including some other stuff for Patreon backers... maybe a weekly exclusive vlog? What are your thoughts?

Even if you don't back me on Patreon, you still get to partake in some of the benefits! For example, right now I'm asking for suggestions for which charity I should donate 10% of this month's earnings toward. If you have ideas, head over to the Patreon page now and let me know!

Oh! And I have fun news for you gaming nerds: Fiancé just went nuts and bought a ridiculous amount of streaming and recording equipment so that we can Twitch stream with a little bit more professionality. Tonight. So, if you're like us and you're not going out on a Friday night, stay home and watch us try and maintain a healthy and loving relationship while playing videogames together! Watch my twitter account for more details.

Okay, I think that's all for now! Sorry this isn't so much of a real post as it is just a deluge of information, but... wedding brain? TWO WEEKS! AH!


Do you write words? I need you! Specifically, I need guest bloggers to help me out while I’m on my honeymoon. This gig does not pay in dollars, but it pays in gratitude, and hopefully some new fans for you, so if you’re interested, please email me: samuelson dot emelie at gmail dot com.


This blog is able to remain ad-free because of the awesome community of Awkward Ambassadors on Patreon. If you’d like to become an Awkward Ambassador and receive special perks from me, please click here

Three weeks.

Holy crap y'all. I'm about to have a husband in three weeks. What is happening? When did I become a grown-up? Aren't I supposed to stop using terms like "grown-up" at this point? There is a lot of joy right now, of course, and thankfully not so much stress. Everything is pretty much set to go and all that's really left is the final payments and the execution of all these plans we've been putting into place over the past year.

The thing that I didn't anticipate, however, was how often I would be having the exact same conversation with every single person I run into. 

Person 1: Hey, Em!

Me: Hi!

Person 1: Getting close, right?

Me: Yup!

Person 1: Are you ready?

Me: I think so!

Person 1: Ah, it's just going to be so much fun.

Me: It sure is!

And then we politely say goodbye and I move on with my life until two minutes later when this happens....

Person 2: Hey, Em!

Me: Hi!

Person 2: Getting close, right?

And so on and so forth until I get home to Fiancé after nine million other people have talked to me.

Me: Did you know that our wedding is coming up?

Fiancé: ....did you not?

And then I close my eyes and fall asleep because I'm exhausted. I'm exhausted, not from planning a wedding and trying to get everything in order, but instead from having had the same conversation every moment of every day now. It's like some form of mental torture.

We've all been there. Anyone who has ever broken a leg or decided to suddenly grow a beard. All of you who are about to graduate or have babies, I know you know exactly what I mean. Suddenly to everyone in your life all you become is the exciting new thing that is happening to you. Nothing else about you is worth discussing anymore.

Me: I wrote a novel.

Person 1: ABOUT HOW YOU'RE GETTING MARRIED?

...

Me: I've discovered a way to reverse the effects of global warming!

Person 2: GREAT! NOW YOUR WEDDING CAN BE OUTSIDE!

...

Me: I FOUND THE WARDROBE THAT LEADS TO NARNIA!!!!

Person 3: YOU SHOULD HAVE YOUR WEDDING THERE!!!!

I know most people mean well. Everyone is bringing it up because it is this huge and monumentally insane occasion happening in my life and it's fair to think that it's all that is on my mind, so I smile through it all and I bear it, because it's all meant with love. And that's what this whole thing is about, right? It's about love. It's about the love that Fiancé and I have for one another, and the love that our friends and family have for us and the love that we hope to continue having and sharing and experiencing for the rest of eternity until we die in a firey ball of death. Or repetitive conversation.

And it's not that I don't want to talk about my wedding at all with anyone ever. Of course I do. This is incredibly exciting for me and it would be weird if no one was acknowledging that it was happening. It's just strange to feel like this is all that some people see when they talk to me now: A bride.

Maybe this is why people elope. Then again when people find out you elope, you start to have that conversation over and over again, so really... there is no winning, is there? Now just imagine if you were getting married, you broke your leg, your fiancé suddenly grew a beard AND you found out you were pregnant ALL RIGHT BEFORE GRADUATION.

Perhaps that is the only way. People would be overloaded by these momentous events in your life that they would just avoid you for fear of a conversational implosion of doom!!

Anyway, that's what's going on with me. How are you?


Do you write words? I need you! Specifically, I need guest bloggers to help me out while I'm on my honeymoon. This gig does not pay in dollars, but it pays in gratitude, and hopefully some new fans for you, so if you’re interested, please email me: samuelson dot emelie at gmail dot com.


This blog is able to remain ad-free because of the awesome community of Awkward Ambassadors on Patreon. If you’d like to become an Awkward Ambassador and receive special perks from me, please click here

One year from today.

One year from today I will have a husband. I will be a wife.

Fiancé and I went to our ceremony site today and had a picnic to celebrate our "pre-anniversary". I had a migraine, but I didn't care. He had a lot of work to do, but he pushed it away, all so that we could go and sit and be with each other in the place where one year from today we will be promising to love each other for the rest of our lives.

Which is insane. And awesome.

And now I'm back in bed, having just taken two more pills to make this pain go away and he's back at his computer making sure that emails get sent. But that's besides the point.

Because one year from today we will be dancing and drinking and clinking glasses and eating cake and I hopefully won't have a migraine, and he definitely will not be working.

One year from today.