Strong, Like a Shot of Whiskey

This story starts just like any other: I was thirteen and my first boyfriend broke up with me, because I “came on too strong.” Tears rolled down my hot, red, cheeks, as my mother consoled me and explained, that one day, some man would love this quality in me — Just how my father had with her. Naturally, thirteen year-old me, cried harder, because, well, isn’t that what mothers are supposed to say?

***

Over the past year, I’ve had to deal with not one, but two, pretty significant and life altering break-up’s. Both the men and the situations taught me a great deal, but this isn’t about me bashing them — It’s about what I’ve learned along the way. I enjoy sharing “lessons learned” and this time around, I feel what I know now, should be shared with as many people as it can possibly reach and maybe, just maybe, I’ll help another young girl who’s crying in her bed, late at night, because she feels… well, for the lack of better words, worthless.

Not to toot my own horn, but I don’t know another way to say it: I was blessed with a pretty face, beautiful hair, big blue eyes, etc, etc..

  

That’s me on my first day of high school — 2004

As a teenager, I was friends with the boys, but never really attracted many of them. They always told me, my personality was “too much to handle.

To clarify their statements, I will admit, I’m very outspoken and energetic. Even when it comes to friends, I am a very passionate and caring person, so I guess, that scared certain (almost all) guys away. Even up until my early college days, I always felt that I was just a pretty face. I never felt that guys took me seriously and when they did, my “strong” personality scared them away.

Within the past year, I have had two of the best relationships in my life, end. The first, was a long-term. After almost five years of dating, I chose to break things off and I immediately jumped into relationship number two — which lasted for less than a year. In the second relationship, we went through a series of breakups, but in the end, he broke up with me. Both of these ended terribly. I spent hours, days, and weeks, crying over the guys who were, ironically, no longer part of my life. I analyzed old text messages, viewed old photos, watched sad Lifetime movies… You know, typical girl sh*t. Then, about 2 weeks ago, I got into a terrible car accident that changed my life.

  

I suffered traumatic injuries: A punctured lung, broken nose, fractured skull, as well as fractures in several parts of my face, including behind my eye, a concussion, and the worst — my brain was bleeding. I woke up three days after the accident and couldn’t recall a single thing. Actually, I still don’t know what caused me to lose control of the car that night, but it definitely changed my outlook on life, especially in regards to the recent breakups, which I had still been suffering through up until the night of the accident.

I realized that had I, God-forbid, not made it out of the hospital alive, I would’ve passed away with bad blood. As I said, things ended badly with both relationships and many things went left unsaid or things were said, but out of anger. I realized that first, I wanted to reach out to bother the guys, letting them know I was alright. I wanted to, at the least, try to form a friendship with them both. To my surprise, one came to visit me in the hospital and we had the chance to REALLY talk. Mind you, I was heavily medicated, but it was sweet of him to listen and visit me, before I had even asked!

Although it took something horrific, I learned that sometimes people come into your life not to stay, but to teach you lessons — With the two guys in my story, maybe they came into my life to teach me what I want and what I don’t want, who knows? It’s too early to tell. Yet, I know they both taught me a lot about myself.

I learned that I needed to respect myself. I found myself consistently doing things for their happiness and not mine, yet I refused to admit I wasn’t happy… because I wasn’t. I love making others happy. It’s something that makes me smile. Although, I never seemed to get that in return, so I found that I wasn’t happy, because I was not giving myself the level of respect that I needed.

Not too long ago, I read a cheesy quote before that said something like:

You’ll receive the type of love that you think you deserve.


I think the same is true with respect. You will get the level of respect that you believe you deserve. It’s all about how you carry yourself and actions will ALWAYS speak louder than words, especially when it comes to relationships.

I consistently felt like I was changing myself to be who, both guys wanted me to be: Quiet, submissive, passive, etc.. None of that is me. I come on “too strong” and honestly, I’d much rather be thought of that way than the other.

I realized I don’t want to change for anyone anymore. I want to be Taylor. I had always been confident in who I was, so why had I let two guys, who were no longer in my life, rob me of that? 

Because I couldn’t accept that things were over. 

I needed to let go.

When I woke up in that hospital bed I was overcome with happiness to be alive and that was enough for me. I didn’t need any guy to do that for me. I realized I was able to do it all on my own. I decide that each morning, when I wake up and each night, when I lay down to sleep. No longer, do I wake up crying or fall asleep with tears running down my face. I smile, because I made it through another day — one more day that I can say I was alive.

One of the guys has walked back into my life and we will always have a relationship. He is somebody I hold very dear to my heart and I’m glad we had the chance to grow closer again. I didn’t hold it against either of them, when I offered friendship, if their response was no. Just as I have to respect myself, I have to also respect others.

Even though it took this horrific accident to make me really understand what it means when people say, “life is too short,” it also made me come to the conclusion, I should never cut people out. I will always welcome an invitation from others, who are kind, to be friends. You can never have enough friends, because never know when you might lose one. As I explained earlier, my belief: People are put in our lives for plenty of reasons, so why not fill your life with as many friends as you can to have them teach you as much as humanly possibly — be that good or bad — It’s all a lesson to learn.

Recently, I have had not one, but two men, tell me how they love that I “come on strong” and they enjoy my passionate personality — even when it comes to friendship. It made me a little emotional to hear both of them say this, because I’ve waited since I was thirteen: When my mom told me, as I cried into her shoulder, some day, some man, will love this quality about me and look at that — Two men told me, just that, within the past week!

Mothers are always right.

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10 Things Sex and the City has Taught Me…

Sex, cocktails, and shoes….yup, were talking Sex and the City. You cannot deny that you have not seen at least one episode, and there is obviously something that keeps us watching those re-runs. As a twenty- something year old, I can easily relate to the lives of Carrie, Miranda, Samantha, and Charlotte. Not only do I think that they’re smart, sassy, and a little smart-assy…
But I’m positive every girl would agree…these women are GENIUS.

1. Chicks before dicks

Let’s be honest here, we all fall into that puppy love, goo goo gaa gaa state over some guy and totally put our friends on the back burner of life. After spending days, weeks, months, or even years with a guy, there’s a possibility you might run into that “oh shit” moment when the clock strikes midnight, and the man you thought was prince charming turns out to be the biggest tool you have ever met. Times like these are when we need our friends…

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Guys will come and go, but your girlfriends will always be there for you.

2. Buy the damn shoes

Hell yea, I love a good pair of shoes, who doesn’t? Life is too short to live without a great pair of pumps…. you’ll not only look like you know the rules of feminism, but you’ll be a few inches above everybody .. literally and figuratively. When it comes to shoes, cost is never a concern. Do you think the designers at Manolo Blahnik say to themselves while designing their latest creation, “Oh, we’re going to have to use cheaper material, there are women who won’t be able to afford these…” FUCK NO. They reason like the rest of women in thinking that shoes are not things you want, they are things you NEED…regardless how many times you slip them on your beautifully pedicured feet. Stop asking yourself, “When will I ever wear these?” and start thinking

“I’ll make a reason to wear them.”

I mean shit, look at Cinderella, a new pair of shoes changed her life.

shoes carrie

3. Go BIG or go home

We have all had a Mr. Big in our lives. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a man who constantly comes and goes; it could end up being a friend, colleague, professor (Probably not the smartest idea). Regardless if it’s a  friend, a lover or whatever, we’ve all encountered a person like this, and if you haven’t, brace yourself because it’s coming. Love is a ridiculously complicated word that has a shit ton of different meanings. This meanings evolve as we age (Or don’t age. Hello? Botox?!) But one thing I learned from Carrie is if you love someone, and I mean REALLY love someone, don’t give up on them.

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4. Girls (Who Run the World)

If you have an awesome ass job that pays a shit ton of money, don’t be ashamed of that!  All I have to say is, girl you should be damn proud of that! You put the time and effort into succeeding in YOUR life. DO NOT feel bad because your man does not make as much as you. It’s not his fault you’re naturally amazing and some men are even turned on by this. A housewife isn’t “being” something, its “doing” something and to “do” something, you have to “be” something first. There is absolutely nothing wrong with a woman owning the fact that she’s the bread winner.

Can you say “Stay-at-home-Dad?”

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5. Love vs. Lovers

If you do not have a great love, then have a lover. After being in a few relationships I’ve learned that being in a relationship isn’t always what it’s cracked up to be. I’ve come to the realization that I’m too young to be tied down, but too old to be celibate. Let your inner Samantha Jones come out, and be fabulous. Do who you want, when you want, whenever you want. And if you’re not satisfied with your lover, find a new one.

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Just remember there’s this thing called STD’s

and that’s something you WILL NOT be satisfied with…

6. Cos MORE politans

My parents always tell me that college is the time to do things I wouldn’t normally do. Their idea of “stepping out of my comfort zone” is joining mathletes or some weird shit like that. My idea is getting fucking wasted every weekend. But what SITC has taught me about drinking is that it never goes out of style. So, let’s toast to Mexi Monday, Twisted Tuesday, Wacky Wednesday, Thirsty Thursdays and then the all mighty “Weekend.” 

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7. Fiction vs. non-fiction

As a little girl I have always had this master plan to graduate college, get a job, get married, have babies, and live in Cape Cod on the ocean. But (Yes, there’s a “but”) sometimes you have to let go of those visions and accept reality. Charlotte has taught me that the idea of a perfect husband isn’t always perfect. You can’t force it, and you can’t pretend to see what you want to see. This wouldn’t be so much of an issue if David Beckham would just show up at my front door, but the right man will come into our lives when it is meant to be. I’ll be waiting Beckham….

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Carrie, we love you, but shut it. Let a girl dream.

8. Would you buy Cubic Zirconium when you can have a Diamond?

Would you settle on a pair of shoes because they are “OK?” The answer better be no. If you don’t settle on a pair of shoes, then why would you settle on a man? If you’re dating someone who has no aspirations in life, and no motivation, then sweetie you need to wake up and smell your Chanel perfume. Even though Samantha is a crazy sex addict (amen to her), she knows what she wants. She doesn’t settle for any man that doesn’t meet her expectations. It’s better to be single, then be with someone that isn’t the “the one”.

samantha guys gif

9. 1-800-DUMPHIM

If you’re in a relationship and you’re not smiling anymore, you need to let go. Sometimes, relationships are not meant to work out. It takes an incredibly strong person to know when the ride is over. No, I’m not talking about your ride “reverse cowgirl” style, I’m talking about the ride you predicated to take on your “five year plan.” Every girl has one of these. Whether it’s meeting Mr. Right, getting married, and having kids or graduating college, becoming a billionaire and along that road keeping your options open … we all have these plans. Throw it all out the window. Fate is not a real thing. Sorry. Nobody will be more disappointed than yourself when five years down the road, you realize that you should’ve ended the relationship back when it was acceptable to be on Tinder. Match.com requires money and a personality. I’m assuming you will have neither at that point, since being in a bad relationship sucks the life and (hundred) dollar bills right out of you to compensate for your latent emotions. Close the sucky relationship door and lock it and delete/block his number. Learn from all the women on SITC, when one chapter ends, another one begins. You are the writer to your own life, so write the story you want.

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10. No amount of make-up can cover up who you really are

Rock what your mama gave you. Never forget that you are who you are, you can’t pretend to be someone who you are not. All the make-up in the world will not make you a different person, it makes you a cake-face-crayola-crayon. Don’t deny who you are to impress others. We all buy a ton of shit we don’t need (but we really do need the newest pair of Loubiton pumps) to impress people that don’t mater. So buy the shoes YOU want, and date the men YOU want, and drink however many drinks YOU want, and screw anyone that judges you.

fabulous gif

So, what is your favorite SITC episode? Comment & share below!

Amanda is a Disney Princess loving, wanna be Blair Waldorf, OCD freak that would rather be sunbathing on the beach. Her guilty pleasures include watching The Bachelor every Monday night, One Direction, and WAWA Slurpee’s. If she isn’t doing, consuming, or dreaming about any of that cool stuff, she’s probably just busy being a student at Rowan University.

amanda

Check here out here: www.linkedin.com/pub/amanda-kuster/85/932/192

Check me out here: http://www.linkedin.com/in/taylorcohen1/

Send me a tweet! @whatiknownoww @ttayl0r

CHEERS TO TWENTY-FOUR YEARS!

#TBH I’m surprised I even made it this far …

Raise your glass & share a toast!

Screenshot 2014-02-23 23.07.12

Twenty-four means you’ve started a defining decade in your life.

This era of your “early twenties” was summed up perfectly

by one neurologist as:

“A time of great risk and great opportunity”

Basically, you’re young enough to stay selfish,

but old enough to know better…

The following are the five things I’ve sort’ve figured out …
 

1. What is Life?

This really only applies to people who aren’t boring.

If you are one of those boring individuals:

It was really great to see forty notifications on LinkedIn about your latest promotion (Because we care?)

& OH, I ALMOST FORGOT! Congrats on the updated Facebook relationship status!

I’m sure you and your cat will be very happy together….

If you are NOT one of those boring individuals: 

You’ll begin to start questioning life right after you turn twenty-one. It will blindside you on a random Wednesday & you’ll think  back to when you read this and say, “Shit. She was right…” Yeah, well guess what? I’m always right.

There will be bills you must pay, obligations must keep & decisions you must make.

WORDS OF ADVICE: Verizon, Comcast, AMEX, nor Visa….

Will give two, three, or even four shits…that you “HAD TO HAVE” the new Google Glass…

Sort’ve like when you were little and your mom would threaten you with,

“If you break it, you buy it” 

Here is the adult version your mother never happened to mention:

“If you charge it, YOU HAVE TO PAY FOR IT LATER”

There are also these things called: APR, Interest, & Late Fee’s… Just as they sound, they are no fun.

Things may seem like they are starting to make sense .. and then they don’t & shit gets even more confusing than it was in the first place. Around this same time you’ll probably start to wonder about your character, morals &  beliefs:

 “What am I doing with my life?”

“Is this wrong?”

and even more importantly …

“Is Starbucks REALLY better than Dunkin?”

life choices

It gets better. Well, at least I hope it does. If I figure it out before you — I’ll make sure to mention it..

2. “AAAAAAND SHE’S PREGNANT…”

In the blink of an eye you’ll go from uploading pictures of you & your 8 million “best friends” …

…To unfollowing those exact same people five years later. Mostly due to the fact that they posted 40 pictures  IN A ROW of their newborn, alien baby & they continuously feel the need to use the hashtag “#babymama” like it’s a good thing…

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Oh, and don’t even get me started on all the engagements. Maybe it’s just me, but I’d rather wait until my fiancé can afford the ring I want, than him surprising me with a princess-cut cubic zirconia “diamond” from Walmart. I see this sad and unfortunate scenario play out daily as I scroll down my Instagram feed…

… and then I scroll back up to delete you.

If your engagement ring is that tacky, I do NOT want to see what the wedding will look like…

3. “Help Me, I’m Poor!”

If you have your shit together, you’re probably out of college by now, working your first job, getting paid like shit & still eating Ramon noodles. This may be where you return back to #1 (What is Life?) and ask yourself how did four years of suffering result in becoming more poor than you were to begin with?

You’re so poor even the bank even feels the need to remind you. Not only are you completely broke, but the NOTHING somehow turns into something…

Negative.

“Hello, Welcome to Wells Fargo Bank. Just to let you know you’re -23.00 in your checking. How would you like to fix this?”

Yes, I know. I am very well aware, considering you feel the need to remind me by sending out a letter everyday. Maybe if you would stop sending me mail we could call it even on the $23.00.

I’d save you a fortune on ink, envelopes, and postage.

You may tell yourself, “No, No, No… that ‘s only people who don’t watch their finances!”

 Yeah? Really? I watch mine…

I watch mine disappear….right on over to Sallie Mae.

help me im poor
 

4. The Holy Hell of Hangovers…

I swear my body knew when I turned twenty-four. I drank my face off, did some fucked up – reckless shit, woke up the next morning & legit had the worst hangover of my life. I’m not just talking about my head or my stomach…

I’m talking about my whole body. It was crying, whimpering & sulking…
 
image
  
I should’ve responded back with: “the hospital…” 
 

5. “What’s an Encyclopedia?”

Yes. That was a serious question a girl asked in my class.

The course largely consists of underclassmen, who were born in or around 1995-1996, but grew up in the new millennium. Of course, I did as well, but I also REMEMBER things from the 90’s…like what life was like before Wikipedia…

I feel like this is the appropriate time to pay my respects to Google, Wikipedia, and the like,  for making life a whole lot easier, but even more importantly…

“Yahoo Answers,” the single, most important reason I’m still in college & still passing.

At the very sound of my professor saying the word, “Encyclopedia”, half the class looked even more puzzled than a baby recognizing its own foot for the first time…

orange 

Although, I don’t think any story I tell you can beat the freshman girl who was completely beside herself as I explained how Justin Timberlake had been in a boy band & wore a matching denim outfit with Britney before he wore a matching suite & tie with Jay-Z

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So, twenty-four should be interesting. I mean, shit, the past 24 hours I have been pretttttty interesting.

I don’t know what the hell is going to happen with my life. At the rate I’m going I could either wake up tomorrow morning as Beyonce…

woke up

…Or I could wake up as Lindsay Lohan.

Ehhhhh.

If I get to choose, it would be LL circa 2004…

Those were the pre-drug-fueled-ankle-bracelet-wearing days.

I haven’t learned everything just yet, although I try acting like I do..(Confidence is the key!)

But I do know that somehow I got to where I am today.

And I have to say, where I am today…

I have a damn good time.

COPY POSITIONING ….

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more where this comes from…

Really coca cola? No, I am not on coke! I don’t do drugs…

I know I can’t be the only one who thinks this is the worst positioning of copy from a huge corporation…

Then again…it was on 95 North heading into NE Philly… So maybe there was some strategy behind this …

WHAT I KNOW NOW … NOKIA & SMW

WHAT I KNOW NOW ... NOKIA & SMW

RECEIVED THE BEST NEWS EVER TODAY!

I was selected as a recipient of a Scholarship Program in partnership with Nokia that will provide complimentary Campus Passes to attend Social Media Week in NYC. This program targeted startups, small businesses, non-profits & students.

What I Know Now: If you aren’t going to take risks and reach out, what makes you think you’re going to stand out?

What I Know Now…#SocialMedia

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Continue reading

What Blair Waldorf Knows Now….

#WhatYouNeedToKnow about friends, cutting them off, & your twenties…Bitchy Blair Style

Maybe we can all take a thing or two from Blair….like Chuck Bass.

You Know You Love Me
XOXO –Gossip Girl

#WhatYouNeedToKnow about friends, cutting them off, & your twenties…Bitchy Blair Style

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