there are two cds that i’ve been listening to on repeat lately and that i shuffle between, both of which make me feel very teeny-bopper-ish but for which i’m not embarrassed: avril lavigne and hawk nelson (even though this cd, letters to the president, is actually pretty old–sometimes it just takes me awhile to give some bands a chance; that’s the pessimist in me not expecting them to be any good).

whenever i get a new cd, i can tell that i really love it–that i can even call it a favorite–if, upon popping it in, i listen to it on repeat, over and over again. if i keep going back to the same songs and can’t bear to skip ahead because i like this one so much. the same was true for mates of state, the brunettes and, most recently, jack’s mannequin. and yes, that has happened with these two recent discoveries.

but there’s a part of one hawk nelson song (the title track) that’s really resonated with me as of late:

if i was brave, i’d write a letter to the president
and have him give it to the leaders of our parliament
but for now, i won’t say nothing

now, i realize that in this song, he’s talking about something big and political and trying to help society. the reason why i like the song so much and empathize with it is for nothing so grand as that. it’s because i love how he says that to speak up, to say “something,” is a brave thing to do. and i feel that way a lot and am trying to be better at it.

i finished “girl meets god” and have now made my way to “the thrill of the chaste,” which i first read about in relevant. (this was while i was in philadelphia and holly and i found out that at our fancy-schmancy hotel, you had to pay to use the pool. out of rebellion, we took our swimsuit-ed selves and filled up the bathtub and squished in. with our legs dangling over top and me continually turning on the hot water to warm it up, we caught up on our magazines. it really wasn’t that much fun, but it felt like we were sticking it to The Man, and so i think we stuck with it just out of principle.)

one of the things she’s talking about in the book (which is all about chastity–both while single, in a relationship, or married) is about needing to be vulnerable. she talks about how people use intimacy as a way to try to fulfill love. but it doesn’t work in that order; you have to have love first for the intimacy to mean anything. otherwise, what you end up doing, is separating the actions from the underlying emotion. and in that you’re disconnecting yourself from it all and shutting yourself off.

she says the answer is to be vulnerable. instead of meeting someone and trying to live up and present yourself as some ideal–your best you–you have to let yourself be vulnerable and show yourself, flaws and all. it’s not that grand of an idea, and of course it makes sense. but it’s one of those easier-said-than-done things. being vulnerable isn’t easy. but she says it’s easy for people to like the you that you love. it’s a different story about the you that you don’t like. and when you find them both, that’s love.