What I’ve done with my life (thus far)

What day is this? Day 12!! Not… quite… half way there. (Though I got it all out of order on Twitter. Eh. They will figure it out.)

Your proudest accomplishment

I am not going to say something like “getting my degrees” because I didn’t have to work all that hard for them. School is easy for me. So it was great to rock it out walking across the stage for my M. Ed., it isn’t the thing I am most proud of.

It isn’t buying a home either. Lots of people buy homes. Big deal? Sure! Proudest accomplishment? Nope.

I’ve done lots of other awesome things, too. Mission trip to India, managed 4 estates (my parents and grandparents dying) in 4 years, learned how to figure skate, lost a bunch of weight (then re-gained. OK. Maybe not so proud of that part). I’ve traveled a bunch. I’ve eaten interesting and very scary things (beef heart and pig trotters anyone?) But I think this is what I am most proud of…

Back in 2006, I entered my first ballroom dance showcase. You can view the video here. I would encourage  you to take 3 minutes out and go take a look.

But I put that up on the internet for everyone to see… and comment upon. Scary and terrifying but I was so proud of how hard I worked – first on losing, I think about 40 lbs at that point. I practiced every day on that routine – at least an hour – for weeks. So much so that shortly after, I had to go to Sports Medicine for work on my back and ankle.

My friend was blogging for a local TV station at the time and she linked to it. She thought it was awesome and wanted to share it with the world. For the most part, the response was positive… except for one guy from Memphis who called me a “blogging whale.”

The Nashville blogging community was very tight knit (at the time). We could tear each other to pieces but the second someone came in from the outside… no. You just don’t do that.

I cried a lot. I was so hurt. It cut me to the core of who I am. On a certain level, I probably still think that no one will see the good that I do for the fat. That being fat negates performing well in anything – as a writer, as a dancer, as just a human.

I finally responded to what this dude had to say a few days after the interwebs erupted (at least for me. It wasn’t viral-viral but many more people watched it than I ever thought would). As proud as I am of the dance, I think I’m more proud of what I learned from the tiniest bit of hate thrown at me.

I will continue to live with joy.

It is a lesson I have forgotten of late. Joy can be a choice.

Don’t make a scene!

Day 11… Your worst/funniest/most embarrassing date

Maybe I’m delusional, but I can only think of one bad thing I did on a date, which wasn’t show up. It was a blind date with a guy I met on the internet and I walked into Outback (where we agreed to meet) and he had been “coy” about telling me what he was going to wear (like “I’ll be wearing a white shirt and khakis”). “You have my picture, you should be able to find me.”

I walked around, only saw one guy that kinda looked like him but not really from the picture and walked back out to sit outside.

10 minutes later, some dude comes storming out and leaves. Whoops. I guess that was him from the angry email I got from him later that night. We didn’t try a second time.

But the one bad date that really was a date that sticks with me goes back to… way back when. Another guy I met online and I agreed to meet for a movie. We drove separate cars and when we got to the window, I only ordered one movie ticket as I figured we would go Dutch because I already knew I didn’t want to be obligated to this guy for even a McD’s cheeseburger after.

Well, dude threw a hissy fit. “I’m the guy! I’m supposed to pay! You should let me pay!!” And he’s all screaming and yelling and the poor girl behind the counter is looking at me like “Whaaaaaaa?”

I raised my hand, showed “2”, thumbed back at him and then walked inside. I barely talked to him after that.

This is a Jonnelle-story. It gets better…

After the movie, which wasn’t just on 11, it was about 97374032 decibels in there… we were chatting out in the parking lot and I was kinda deaf-ish. He asks, as compensation for my movie ticket, if I would be willing to pass out fliers around campus of his computer/web business. I thought I wasn’t quite hearing this right, but no! Because he was certain that college students would need his help and since I was also a student (at the time) , I could tell them what a great guy he was and help him get clients and stuff.

I took the fliers, got in my car and left. I threw them out weeks later when I cleaned out my car. Never heard from him again.