ASH AMBIRGE

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When Faith Has an Affair And Walks Out On You–And Doesn’t Even Have the Decency to Look Back.

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

My mother had severe anxiety disorder. Diagnosed. Verifiable. Psychiatric level.

She'd sit in the living room, what iffing life as it passed her by out the window. What if that check doesn't come? What if that bill is high this year? What if I can't go? What if it snows that day?

My 16-year old go-to response was always, “Mom, everything's going to work out. Everything always does in the end. Don't worry.”

And at the time, I truly believed it. Whether out of necessity or naiveté, every tattered piece of my teenage heart believed it. I had to believe it. Believing it was our only hope. I was a cross-that-bridge-when-you-come-to-it kinda gal, razored deep with faith. Probably my only faith.

But then, of course, as the years went on and the disappointments stacked up–death, money, betrayals, life–I became bitter. Hostile. Hardened.

I saw first hand that sometimes things don't work out. Sometimes faith has an affair and walks right the fuck out on you. And sometimes, you can't simply cross any ridiculously proverbial bridges “when you come to them,” because the path you're on is so uncharted, a bridge doesn't even exist.

During those times, those moments, those years, I would lie awake and try to convince myself of my former ideals. Everything's going to work out. Everything always does in the end. Everything's going to work out. Everything always does in the end. 

But somehow, it wasn't the same.

Somehow, I had stopped believing it.

And this is the moment in the story when I take a puff of my pipe and casually pull a wrinkly newspaper from a crevice in my brown leather couch. The date reads October 2010.

Headline: Foolish girl sells car, takes meager savings in approximate amount of zero dollars and four cents, and randomly flies to the country of Chile to start life anew. (Remember that?)

Okay, so the headline didn't say that, because there was no headline, because there was no newspaper, but just GO WITH ME HERE.

In October 2010 I had had enough. Enough of the fears. Enough of the what ifs. Enough of the disappointments. I would not watch life pass me by from the other side of the window.

And it was the year that followed, as I explored a country that wasn't my own, building my life–and a new business–when I realized what the caveat was.

Everything's going to work out. Everything always does in the end. …when you stop waiting for someone to build you a bridge, and figure out a way to build your own motherloving bridge, instead. 

Because things don't just work themselves out.

Nothing naturally falls into place. (Not even toupees, you guys.)

And we can't bet our lives on “what will be, will be.”

The trick is that you can't have faith in the universe, because the universe is an unfaithful brat, and that Secret guy can send me ALL THE HATE MAIL HE WANTS.

Because the only thing you can have faith in?

Scratch that–MUST have faith in.

Isn't your ability to cross any bridge,

but your ability to build one.

Nov 22

2012

Lust, Turkey Gizzards + A Ladylike Toast

I blame my bleak and very unpromising cooking skills on Thanksgiving, you know. You’d think I would have gotten better from helping my mom prepare such a yearly feast for me, her and my dad. (Mashed potatoes were my sworn duty. Probably because they’re mashed, requiring heavy amounts of manual mashing child labor. Not to […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Oct 15

2010

A Conversation With An Immigrant on U.S. Life

I had an insightful conversation with a Mexican immigrant the other day. We also might have had a round of margaritas, which could have enhanced the perceived value of the conversation, but nevertheless, I wanted to share it with you. It went something like this: ME: So, I imagine you came here with some expectations […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Nov 13

2013

You Know You Need a Change When…

The year I tried to juggle 1,407 balls in the air and still be nice to strangers in the super market taught me an important lesson: Busy isn’t a synonym for happy. Full doesn’t mean fulfilled. And people are pushy assholes in line at the deli counter. All of us are busying ourselves to death—sometimes […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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May 31

2018

If Somebody Told Me to Pick a Husband at Age Twenty-Three, I’d Likely Be Waking Up Next to Some Guy Who Can’t Spell “Lemon.”

You know why we’re all unhappy and restless and jaded and depressed? LIFE IS BORING US TO TEARS. Boredom is the devil, but most people don’t realize they’re bored. They’re busy working. They’re busy running. They’re busy doing ALL THE ERRANDS and keeping up with those fucksticks, The Jones’. It doesn’t feel like they’re bored, […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired, Feeling Disillusioned With Life

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Nov 5

2012

Where’s Your God Damn Pineapple?

There’s always a reason why you shouldn’t. Shouldn’t spend the money. Shouldn’t be so frivolous. Shouldn’t miss work. Shouldn’t be irresponsible. Shouldn’t act so hastily. And a million other reasons why you shouldn’t do what you’ve been wanting to do. The real question, of course, isn’t whether you should or you shouldn’t. Because when it […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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Oct 23

2012

How to Be a Human.

I sat in a plaza yesterday, behind La Moneda–Chile’s version of The White House. Diagonal paths come from all directions and meet up in the center, before darting off in opposite directions. People walk gruffly, generally ignoring one another–cell phones, busy faces, stern looks, fast paces. And just like in plazas everyday across the world… […]

In: Feeling Dead and Uninspired

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