Giving Cali a Forever Home.

Shortly after Tawny and I moved in together we made a wonderful $50 purchase on our little fluffy angel, Tucker. He was so tiny when we got him 7 months ago. Tawny was at home a lot by herself while I worked and she was getting tired of being alone, and I just wanted a cutie pie running around the house. Having a puppy was an interestingly hard journey. He peed everywhere, he pooped even more, and I was so scared to leave him alone because the thought of him being sad broke my heart. Tucker eventually outgrew the puppy stage, and now he is totally house broken, sleeps with us without any problems, and is the best little boy I could ask for.

Lately, we have been talking about getting another puppy for Tucker to play with, perhaps a little sister for him. Yesterday we finally went through with it and went to pick up our tiny ball of fur. Even though we didn’t get her from a shelter, I say that we rescued her because of her awful living conditions.

Tawny and I pulled up to a small trailer that had about 15 dogs running wild outside. The first person to come out of the house was a 5-year-old boy holding our soon-to-be little girl, and he was covered head to toe in sores. Instantly I knew that we were about to enter a place neither of us were used to. The little boy’s father finally came out and the first words he said to us were “Well, they smell bad. They’ve been shittin’ everywhere and rollin’ in it. Eatin’ it too.” You could imagine my face when he said that. But, I still wanted to see this little girl I had found. Upon entering the house there was a woman on the couch, also covered in sores, holding 3 precious puppies. We saw her and where she lived, and we knew that we couldn’t leave her under the “care” or pathetic excuse for that, with these people.

Tawny and I grabbed our little one and left as quickly as we could. The smell that radiated off of our new angel was so disgusting that we were both light-headed just from being near her. She had no energy, she was exhausted, and she was taken over by fleas. All you had to do was look at her blonde fur and you instantly saw fleas crawling all over her. She looked up at us with the saddest eyes, and Tawny (being the softy that she is) started bawling. “She’s just so little. She doesn’t deserve this. We have to get her better.” So that’s exactly what we did.

We drove an hour and a half home and went straight to the sink. We pulled out the dawn soap and bathed her 3 times. After bathing her I held her while Tawny hand-picked over 50 fleas off of her. 50 damn fleas. This sweet little girl was treated so unfairly. After her bath and being dried off she slept harder than I imagine she’d slept before. She was happy, and eventually after getting used to her, Tucker seemed happy too.

We are now back in the puppy stages. Tucker is such a good big brother, and anytime Cali wines, he is the first to let me know. Cali, named after California (Tawny’s home state), has been the best addition to our family. Tawny is obsessed with her, and I love her so much. She’s perfect.

Last night as we were praying before bed, I got to change “Thank you for Tawny and Tucker and my perfect little family”, to “Lord, thank you for Tawny, Tucker, and Cali, my perfect little family.” And because of that, because of this beautiful little family that I have been blessed with, I am all smiles.

Rebellious Wildflowers

I didn’t look out my window and see a beautiful building make of glass. I didn’t drive down a highway to get where I needed to go. I didn’t hear traffic from my living room. I looked out the window and saw the greenest grass. I drove down dirt and gravel roads. The only cars I ever heard from my house were the people driving by honking at us with their hand sticking out their window waving frantically and smiling, or calling our names. I heard crickets at night and saw fireflies dancing in the dark lighting a path that led to wonderful adventure. I’m not from a big city, I don’t live life in the fast lane. I’m from a small town, where cows are more populated than people, and where literally everyone knows who I am.

I was born in a itty bitty town, with people who had itty bitty agendas. No one planned on being a president, but instead we dreamed of being farmers, teachers, preachers, oil field workers, and if you were lucky like one of my classmates, you made it pro in football. We lived for Friday night lights and the bonfires at my best buddy’s house afterward. Where we’d sneak cheap alcohol, get on a four-wheeler, and hit the creek. We lived for ourselves, and we lived for each other. No one had enemies (except for school basketball and football rivals), and everyone was friends in someway with everyone else.

That’s how I grew up, and I loved every second of it. I should have savored it more than I did, I would give anything to relive some of those nights we had, the ones we can remember. We were dumb kids, but we were in love with our lives. We lived for the mud on our boots, and the wind in our hair. We existed for the nights we would climb the water tower, and literally paint the town. We were born to experience the small town heartaches and triumphs.

My granddad was the mayor of my tiny paradise. My mom was a school teacher, and my grandma was a preacher one town over.  I was the captain of the basketball team, I played 3 varsity sports all 4 years, I had gone to school there since Pre-K, and I was friends with everyone. Everyone, and I mean everyone, watched what I did. People knew Shelbie Welk, or so they thought.

I was a super happy person the majority of the time! Obviously sometimes my teenage attitude wasn’t always in tip-top condition. But not knowing how to express myself was a major cause for that. I didn’t know how to accept who I was. I fought it, oh boy did I fight it. I dated boys left and right, but I was kissing other people on the side, usually girls. I had a hard time relating to other girls because despite how much I tried, I wasn’t like them. I was the off-brand to their name brand. I was trying desperately to please my family, and the wonderful, yet close minded people of my town. I couldn’t let them down. I couldn’t be someone they didn’t expect me to be.

After I graduated and left my comfort zone, I had to learn who I really was on my own. I went to a Baptist University in East Texas.I knew my roommate, luckily we were best friends in high school, but despite that I was completely alone. She started making her own friends, and so I did. I became best friends with some of the players on the softball team, who ended up being my roommates the next few years. With the exception of one of them, they were all gay. Surprisingly they were fighting it too, so we learned to lean on each other. When we all finally accepted that we were who we were, it was a beautiful time. I realized that I could finally relax my shoulders for the first time in years. I had been so uptight while I was trying to portray something I never was, I finally got to take a load off, and enjoy myself.

That lasted for a while. Until I met a speaker in chapel, who convinced me that me being myself was a sin. I wasn’t supposed to be gay, and my family had been right all this time. I was a sinner, and I had a one way ticket to the flames. I believed him. I tried not to, but I believed him with all of my heart. The guilt consumed me in ways I never thought possible. I ended a relationship, and started trying my hand at men again. Needless to say, it didn’t work (this will be a story in another blog post.)

After years and years of trying to mask who I was, of trying my hardest to please the people around me, I couldn’t anymore.

My hometown left a huge mark on me. One thing it showed me was that there is so much beauty in letting things grow wildly, and on their own. Letting things be free, like the cattle that graze the pastures, like the birds who nest here in the summer, like the rushing waters at Brushy Creek when it rains, like the wildflowers on the side of C.R. 3211. No one planted them, no one picked them, but they chose to grow there, they chose to root themselves in that particular area. That is what I am choosing to do. I choose to live in God’s will, but I also choose to express my freewill as a human. No one can pick where I land, or where I go.

I am a wildflower, a rebelliously beautiful breed. I am someone who can’t be tamed, and I won’t be planted in a box. I choose to live outside of the box.  I choose to be myself. I won’t be blended in with the pack, but I’ll stand out. I can thank my country roots for that. Because even though I was surrounded by a lot of close minded people, they taught me to be open-minded without even realizing it. The land I was surrounded by, the animals that roamed around me, the people who dared to be different, they taught me what it meant to uproot yourself and grow elsewhere. And I am so blessed, and grateful that I learned to be myself.

The Versatile Blogger

I am in utter shock and disbelief that Johnathan and Aaron from husbandandhusband.net saw fit to nominate me for the versatile blogger award. When I started blogging I never expected to have anyone read my writing, and I especially never thought anyone would like it enough to follow me! But, I am so glad that the two of them did, and I can’t thank them enough! 🙂

So, 7 things you for sure don’t know about me…

1. I am obsessed with horror movies. The Halloween movies particularly. Halloween 4 literally is my life. I’ve probably seen it over 200 times.

2. I am a percussionist. I can play basically anything I can get my hands on. Give me a day or two with an instrument of your choice and I’ll teach myself how to play. My mom is a drummer, and she taught me well. My whole family makes up a gospel band.

3. I went to college for basketball originally, but didn’t end up playing because I worked and paid my way through school.

4. I am from one of the smallest towns in Texas, where my grandad is the mayor and my mom is a teacher.

5. I have a super thick country accent. When I’m not in teaching/coaching clothes, I’m usually wearing my cowboy boots.

6. My girlfriend and I met at college, she played softball with my roommates and dated one of my best friends at the time……soooooo awkward.

7. I have 8 tattoos. All classy I might add.

I was told to nominate 15 bloggers, but I don’t think I even follow 15 people yet, that’s how new I am. *insert pouting face*  I hope that’s okay! I’ll go ahead and put my nominations on the board, even though it is short of 15.

Drum roll please……

1. voicinghope.wordpress.com

The piece that really drew me in was “whispers & shouts”. There was something about that post that was insanely vulnerable. I loved the simplicity, yet depth of this.

2. icoulddriveforever.com

If you’re looking to go on a journey vicariously through someone else, this is your guy! Wonderful writing, great adventure, fun times!

3. optionalpoetry.wordpress.com

I’m pretty addicted to poetry, and this writer is wonderful. I actually really love that titles of all of the poems, are dates. It’s a different, yet beautiful, raw kind of writing.

4. teenchange.wordpress.com

From one teacher to another, I really enjoy this blog. She drew me in with “Reflections from the Pause Button.” Check her out, you won’t be disappointed.

5. erickaclay.com

I love her post “Taking Chances as a Writer”! First line “Writing is like being naked” and I was hooked. I actually started reading the first chapter of her book online and thoroughly enjoyed it!

The Feeling of Inadequacy

“Inadequate” 
adjective
1. not adequate or sufficient; inept or unsuitable.
2. Psychiatry. ineffectual in response to emotional, social, intellectual, and physical demands in the absence of any obvious mental or physical deficiency.
One of the worst feelings I have ever experienced is the feeling of inadequacy. Feeling like you genuinely aren’t good enough. Feeling like no matter what you do, it’s never quite up to par.I think what’s worst than that is having other people think that about you.
There are two kinds of people in this world. Type 1: People who let that do some serious damage to their inner fighter, giving them a K.O. in a matter of minutes.Giving up, taking off their gloves and forfeiting before their pride completely shatters. Then there is type 2: People who feed off of it. Who feel it, learn from it, and keep on truckin’. The people who use it as fuel for bettering themselves. There have been times when I have been type 1. My pride was damaged. The fighter in me was embarrassed and wanted to quit. I didn’t understand the point of trying anymore, and quite frankly I was throwing my own little pity party. I think everyone goes through that at some point.
Recently I have been pushed and pulled in every direction in one specific aspect of my life. I have had thoughts of giving up on the task at hand and finding something else to do with my life. I have thought that I wasn’t good enough. But the truth is, I’m more than enough. I am choosing to be type 2, as hard as it can be at times. I am choosing to outlast the adversary. I am choosing to brush it off and I am choosing to show that I am not shaken or bothered by comments made. I know that I am enough, and I know I am dang good at what I do. I am not inadequate, in fact, I am more than qualified. I refuse to let anyone else win, I absolutely REFUSE to be ran off by someone who is scared that I am not only more qualified than them, but better than them.
Inadequacy might seep out of others. But it will never seep out of me. 

Things Change

A lot of things change when you are in a committed relationship. I’m not that party girl I was in college. I’m not a girl who lives to go clubbing. I’m the girl who is totally fine hanging out at the house with or without a bottle of whiskey and a close group of friends. I’m the girl who would rather go to a restaurant to have a few drinks rather than pay $150 a weekend going to uptown. I’m the girl who would rather wear jeans and a t-shirt and skip out on the skirt and blouse. I’m the girl who would much rather wake up to the same woman every day, than going home with someone new every night. Some might say that I don’t have much of a social life anymore, but honestly, I’m fine with that. I’m not your average 23-year-old I would presume.

Being in college was a blast. I would party with my friends when I wanted to. I would drink on days where I had nothing to do after classes. I would go to work and stay up until 3 in the morning having sleepovers in the living room with my roommates. College was amazing to say the least. As fun as it was, it’s the past. It’s who I was before I landed a big girl job. Now that I’m a school teacher and a coach I’m in bed most nights by 10. The time that I do get off I’m relaxing with my girlfriend and my dog, because my body is worn down. Surely other people get this way once “grown up” life takes over.

As “boring” as I may seem, I love the life I live. I still have the same friends from college although they live 4 hours away from me. I still see my family weekly. I still love to have fun. There are a few people who don’t necessarily enjoy the new me. They feel neglected, and I can somewhat see where they are coming from. They still love going out every weekend, and functioning on little to no sleep. I, on the other hand, can not do that. Physically, or mentally. I need my beauty sleep for sure. As much as we tried to not face it, the fact is, things change. We all have to grow up at some point. My grown up won’t be the same as your grown up, which is perfectly fine. Just like we are all different, so are out opinions.

Sometimes I miss the old, carefree, Shelbie. Mainly the carefree part, not having bills, not working everyday, not having to come home and grade papers, etc. Other than that, I love my life. I love who I am. I love being in a committed relationship and coming home to the same person every day. I love grabbing my girl and spontaneously dancing in the kitchen instead of gettin’ it on the dance floor. This is who I am. And I love who I am. The people who love me enough to stick around will hold on to me, and accept me for who I am. They’ll accept that Tawny is now apart of me too, and it’s not me anymore. Those who matter will be here, those who don’t, well…I hope a memory of the old me will suffice.