well, this post is happening.

Happy one month until autumn! Here’s hoping I lock down a steady job soon so I can afford rent insurance my student loans an unnecessary amount of sweaters!

I’ve been reluctant to talk about what has become a major part of my quest for pain relief because I’ve been worried about crossing the line between honest, personal writing into TMI territory. I worry about making my many, many readers uncomfortable. The sacrifice is…I’m not making any progress, and I’m not initiating any conversations that might help someone else make progress. No one benefits.

With this in mind, today I’m going to do the uncomfortable thing and finally talk about…birth control! Annnd…PERIODS! Did I just lose all the men?

There’s a question I love to get when I’m having myself a good ol’ ER visit for my mystery flank pain or any other symptoms. “When was your last period?”

I admitted to a male ER doctor on one somewhat recent visit that it was currently happening, and that right there ended our conversation. He told me that some women experience much more severe cramping than others, even in unexpected areas of the body. The only reason I had gone to the ER at all was that I was experiencing similar symptoms to the stroke-code day, and had been told that I should absolutely go to the ER if those symptoms ever came back.

Some background info for ya: I switched from a hormonal birth control pill to a copper (non-hormonal) IUD a little over a year ago, hoping that my anxiety and depression would calm down. I had a feeling the two were related. Luckily, they did get much better after the switch. Things aren’t perfect, but mentally I feel a thousand times better than before.

With this swap came a sacrifice. I never had a difficult period while on the pill, but things took a 180 with the IUD. I expected everything to level out after a few months, but this did not happen. Now I have a few days a month where I can’t really leave the house. For the most part, I think it’s worth it to feel like myself again.

I’ve kept a log of my pain and symptoms for years (without much consistency), but only at the start of 2019 did I start tracking those symptoms in correlation with that time of the month. I don’t know how surprised I should be, but there is a bit of a pattern. My left side pain, lightheadedness, fatigue, and even UTI symptoms that have been present for years and years tend to act up during and before the uterus party kicks off. To note: I experience instances of left sided flank pain (typically right along the bottom of my ribcage) at random points in the month, too. But…my symptoms also consistently get worse at the same time each month.

What does it mean?

I don’t know. I tried to talk to my OBGYN about it at my last appointment, which I believe I wrote about in minimal detail. Specifically, I wanted to learn about ureteral endometriosis from an expert and not just the internet. As it turned out, I don’t believe my OBGYN knew much about ureteral endometriosis at all. He insisted on performing an “examination” and told me that because the area wasn’t tender to the touch, I probably didn’t have it. I tried so, so politely to ask if my ureter would be the tender area rather than where he had examined, reminding him that I wasn’t talking about your usual endometriosis, and his response was more or less a hesitant “nah”. Anyway, that was about my 10th bad experience at that office so I’m pretty done with them.

You know what’s crazy though?

Just in my very light research that I’ve done on possible conditions that are related to the menstrual cycle and/or all of those crazy organs down there, I’ve come across SO MANY conditions that I’ve never heard of.

SO. MANY. Not that they all have anything to do with my symptoms, but oh my gosh there are so many different potential problems that women can experience.

Thoratic endometriosis? Interstitial cystitis? Mittelschmerz?

Also, the amount of women/menstruators asking each other questions via online forums is equally great to see, and terrifying. How did we become so reliant on turning to each other for answers when we’re all meant to see doctors who are trained specifically in these areas? I know full well that there are tons of incredible and dedicated OBGYNs out there, but at the same time…the situation proves that we’re a long way from where we need to be.

Health education is a big part of this, as well. I remember the first time I was diagnosed with a UTI, before we knew it was a chronic/mimicry situation, and thinking “why did I not learn in health class that girls should use the bathroom after sex?” Seems like some basic preventative information, no? Simple things! Not to mention, I didn’t even know there was such thing as a non-hormonal IUD. The way I felt all of those years could’ve been avoided. Who knows what a difference that might’ve made?

I know I’m one of those people. I talk a lot and get fired up about things, but I haven’t done much to enact any change. I knew when I made this blog public that I was far from having my goals figured out. Y’know, big picture goals. Still, as I say all the damn time, we all have to start somewhere. In the meantime, I have a collection of posts where I rant about things for me to look back on when I feel like I don’t know what I’m doing…so there’s that.

I’m going to lay on the floor now with ice on my ribs and continue to try to control my hormonal acne with a very uncomfortable bee venom serum. Yes, it stings. Yes, like a bee sting.

I’m leaving you with a recommendation of someone to pay attention to: Nadya Okamoto

Okamoto is a Harvard college student who founded PERIOD, the menstrual movement – “a global, youth-powered non-profit that is fighting to end period poverty and period stigma.” (I took that directly from her organization’s Instagram, @periodmovement.) I love what she’s doing. If you’re a college student, you can start or be a part of a PERIOD chapter on your campus. I’m still working on figuring out what I can do for her cause as a non-college student with no money – but I’m sure there’s something. Oh, Okamoto also wrote and published a book. Pfft. No big deal. Bet she doesn’t know how to mime.

Alright, it’s floor time.

(…watch out for Séan’s foot)

sharing is not caring if you’re being ridiculous

It started with my being at a film shoot last Wednesday. “I’ll post on Thursday,” she said.

Thursday I had a job interview, after which I rewarded myself with having a baking party and falling down a podcast rabbit hole.

Friday I had a second job interview and then must’ve done other things, because I certainly did not post anything.

Saturday was my family reunion, and Sunday I watched Manchester United destroy Chelsea and then went to see Hootie and the Blowfish (none of that makes sense to me, either).

Monday I walked 500 miles with one of my favorite people from home who was visiting the city, and yesterday I shadowed someone as a sort of third interview. Then I fell asleep.

ANYWAY, that’s my alibi. So here we are now, a week late. I’d say sorry but I feel like I’m doing everyone a favor by not posting when I don’t have any real thoughts to contribute to the world.

This is a subject I spend a lot of my limited brain energy thinking about – whether or not I have the right idea by even trying to publish posts on any sort of schedule.

I like that it’s a way to practice holding myself accountable when no one else expects anything of me. I think it’s good to have things like that in your life. It’s like working out.

Also like working out, writing works best when you just do it. Do the little bit. Write a poem about a stranger or arbitrary object. Start 50 novels and abandon them all, if you feel like it. As long as you keep writing and paying attention to what works versus what doesn’t, I don’t see how you won’t end up making progress. I look at my past posts from time to time, and I’ve found that having the distance between the day I wrote it and the present makes it much more clear what I could’ve done better. It helps me figure out how I might try to express something differently next time.

There’s that other thing about being a “blogger” (*scowls*) that would require me to post consistently. For the sake of growing my “brand.”

I picture a wild-eyed male actor in his late fifties or so who only wears turtlenecks and has hair too unkempt to be hip at his age who has never taken a paid gig because of his “artistic integrity.” I realize that maybe I’m the blogger version of this cynical jabroni. Should I be this way? Some would say no, but I say yes because it’s the way I am and therefore it is what it is.

There’s a lot of “this happened to me today, and my realization was profound” going around on these influencer Instagram accounts and blogs. It’s always something that happens to the writer, not something that happens to someone else. Or if the event does happen to someone else, the story is really about how the writer went through a moment of realization.

“Hey guys. I have something important to share.

I was outside (in my favorite Savannah Wide-Leg Denim Overall by Free People, link here #fppartner) tending to my sunflowers, when I noticed that all but one of the leaves on the bottom two feet of the stalks had shriveled up and died. The leaves looked more and more green as they got closer to the top. These were the leaves closest to the sun, because the sun is up in the sky.

It occurred to me that your position is your power. Sometimes, the system is designed for some to thrive and some to barely survive. That’s nature, and the nature of life. I was born a bottom leaf, but I’m strong, and I am hanging on. I want all of you to keep hanging on. Be that one not-dead leaf. xoxo. *leaf emoji* *green heart emoji* *muscle flexing emoji*”

Do we need more of this? I’m just one gal with one opinion, but absolutely the heck not.

I’m losing my mind lately over everything I see on the news, and additionally, all of the absolutely made-up news I get to watch people share on Facebook. Posts shared that serve no purpose other than to make another group of people angry. Why? Are we not busy enough? Are we angry about so much ourselves that we want to spread it around to others? I don’t respond to any of these posts because I think progress will only come if we ignore nonsense and channel our anger towards actual change. But maaaan I am operating with a short fuse lately.

We need facts. Just facts. And videos of otters and cookie recipes, they can stay. Also, harmless memes.

…I love writing “harmless memes.” As if we ever thought memes would become politicized.

I hope no one takes this as an attack on creative writing, or motivational writing, (except for the kind on which I based that sunflower example, because I am totally attacking that). That’d be like saying all styles of painting that aren’t Renaissance portraits are useless and dumb. No.

All I’m getting at is that there’s an obsession with adding and adding and adding content into society via so many outlets, without a whole lot of regulating, and it’s hard to find two critical types of information: what’s urgent, and what’s true.

If you write acrostic poetry and that’s your “thing” – no problem, you keep doing you. I’m just hoping that we’re heading towards a shift where people start questioning the validity of what they’re sharing before they share it. Or in the case of sunflower influencer: is this what people need? Is the post maybe kinda tone-deaf? Am I just posting because I need daily content and I haven’t left the house today?

Let’s be responsible! It’s sexy! Facts are great! Real research is awesome!

That’s it. That’s the post. I have some pictures to prove that I really was busy this past week and because people are more likely to read a post with pictures. That amount of catering to what works I am willing to do, but mostly because I’m proud of my phone photography. G’bye!

things I know: a little bit about John Updike, and nothing about the economy

We are going full stream of consciousness this evening, folks.

I am very burnt out with regard to my job hunt. I realize that feeling burnt out is just part of the job-hunt territory, much like working in the service industry. When it comes to both, you know going in that feeling burnt out isn’t an “if” but a “when” situation. I can safely say that most people accepting a full-time serving position (in NYC, mind you) are not thinking “…you know what will never get old? This!”

I was riding a nice wave of motivation and productivity for a good few weeks with little to show for it, aside from a lot of additions to my “jobs applied” Google sheet. A law firm toyed with me a bit and then a hotel, but I couldn’t hook either of them. To tell you the truth, I think part of the problem is that a large part of me still doesn’t want the jobs to which I’m applying. I’m still a bit confused as to what I’m trying to do, here.

What I’m realizing is that the job posts I’m excited to see and would be fired up to apply to, I can’t actually apply to because I’m lacking the necessary educational background and/or experience. The other day, my dad told me about some study revealing that men are more likely to apply to jobs where they don’t meet the qualifications than women are. Let me just say, I do believe in pushing for the things you want, and I’ve definitely embellished on my experience at times in the past when a job seemed too perfect. We have to acknowledge, though, that there are times when you really do need a specific background to apply for a job. Some examples:

  • working at an animal rescue (no veterinary skills, college-level science education, or experience working at a rescue? welp!)
  • environmental conservation (unless you want to try to get people to sign petitions on the street, the other jobs aka the ones I would want involve at least some amount of environment science background, and/or field work)
  • videographer (I have no camera, software, extremely limited software skills, and no portfolio. I know what you’re thinking: well then, fix that! …Friends. I would love to. That stuff is e x p e n s i v e. I need a job just to afford to prepare for that job.)
  • anything in a library (there’s a specific masters you need for that, too. the heck!)

These are just some examples off the top of my head, but I’ve spent the better part of the last three years sorting through all sorts of job openings, trying to figure out how to spin my experience to show these hiring teams “look, I may not have exactly what you’re asking for, but I’m a hard worker, I’m good with people, I believe in going the extra mile, and I’m very willing to learn.”

Anyway, my point wasn’t to be complain-y about the job hunt, here. There are as many exciting aspects as annoying ones, especially those magical moments when I come across something that I feel fits who I am and the way that I work.

My point was to wonder out loud…why are liberal arts degrees even a thing?

Okay please stay calm, liberal arts pals. I have a liberal arts degree. I had the best time in my English classes, seriously. They shaped the way I read, process, write, perform research, and more. I hated the core classes I was forced to take, like marketing, math (even that one math class for English majors was a struggle) and microeconomics. Those classes were the most challenging ones for me, and I definitely did not have a “knack” for any of those subjects the way I did for writing literary research papers.

In retrospect, I should’ve pushed myself to study something that didn’t come easily to me. I know I would have still loved reading, writing, the arts – you name it. My grades wouldn’t have been as good, but I would’ve learned things I can’t learn without guidance from professors.

Wouldn’t it make sense if we went to college to learn how to do something that you can’t learn how to do without college?

(the radical part) …and if those were the only degrees offered?

Imagine I had a biology degree to fall back on right now while I pursue writing endeavors. Or had a degree in accounting. Computer science. Information systems. (Is that something? It sounds like something.) I’m willing to bet I’d at least get more interview offers when I send out for jobs, because having degrees of this sort means that you have entire special skill sets that other people (like us English majors) don’t even know exist.

That’s gotta be super handy.

Maybe I’m making a terrible point, or making a decent point terribly, but take it from someone who is faced with “profiency in [blank, blank, and blank] required” on a daily basis. It used to be Microsoft Office, Google Suite, and maybe something to do with Excel specifically. There’s so much more now, it’s insane! The proactive person in me would try to find a way to learn how to use different software programs via YouTube videos or attempt to purchase that software on the cheap and self-teach, but this still brings me back to the same point: if I end up having to put in this extra work anyway, what is this degree I currently have really doing for me?

Could/should someone have warned me that I chose a luxurious degree that should really be reserved for fancy rich people who want to sound “well-educated” at social gatherings? Should I not have studied something to do with science or computers and numbers and then joined my local library immediately post graduation? Would it be okay to be sort of meh at writing essays, but for the sake of being a financially stable human who pays their rent on time? Is it fair to expect sixteen- and seventeen-year olds to have the sensibility to realize that just because a college offers a degree program does not mean that it’s going to be of any real value to you after graduation?

I can’t be the only English major on here, so someone please help me out of this black hole.

I’d love to to hear some takes on this from people with all sorts of educational backgrounds! I’ll go back to my regularly scheduled browsing through jobs tomorrow morning, but it is nice to stop and have a giant “what the absolute heck” moment once in a while.

Also here’s a picture of what is – I kid you not – the most valuable thing I have to to show for all of my college loan debt.

This performance is my clown-ing achievement. *cries*

PS: I know there’s no point in getting hung up on “I should’ve done this thing differently!” I’m also very grateful that I’m where I am in life right now. In that respect, I wouldn’t change a thing. I’m just pondering the whole idea of certain liberal arts degrees, and wondering if we could help younguns make more informed decisions about higher education and what’s worth their time (and debt) – that is all! Cheers 🙂

helpful things I learned from the worst book I’ve ever read (no, I’m not telling you the book)

Be a good representative of your community.

No matter which hat of my many hats is most prominent on my head at any given time, I want to represent that hat in an honest way. It’s not about proving why I’m right as the only American in the room, or only feminist, or only Penguins fan, whatever – it’s about being a positive representative of that group and acknowledging, not making excuses for, fellow group members behaving badly.

Don’t present your opinions as facts.

In your heart of hearts, you know if a strong opinion is really just that: an opinion. Even if it’s a core value of yours. You can express that idea if you need to, but to paint it as a fact is irresponsible. It’s not even so much about the people you offend, but the people you mislead.

Don’t tell half truths.

You’re misrepresenting yourself by doing this, and people will notice. If you’re presenting yourself as something, be that something. Do the thing, even if it’s ugly or embarrassing. Don’t do a “version” of it. Do it for real.

Check your privilege.

Please. Especially if you’re up on a soapbox telling people to live a certain way. Acknowledge such things as systemic barriers, whether it’s to do with racism, classism, homophobia, transphobia, xenophobia, allllll of it…before you go off on someone about what they’re doing wrong and what they should just *poof!* go off and change about their lives. PS: If you goof up, (I’m already questioning if “systemic” was the right word to use – I think so?) own it! Let people teach you. Make an effort to learn. Grow.

If you used to be an apple and became an orange, your former apple-ness is no excuse for you to shame other apples into also becoming oranges.

Yeah…no. “I used to be lost, too” is not something to say to someone who is living their truth and harming no one. If you used have…let’s say, “a similar lifestyle” to someone you’re preaching to, that doesn’t make it okay! What in the world! You could have been a literal sex worker and changed careers, that doesn’t give you any more of a right to slut shame anyone. Dang, people. I’m getting angry again.

Do your research.

Just because you think you are sharing a humorous, uncommon, groundbreaking secret does not mean that the rest of the world is on the same page. “Everyone, I have a big secret. I [insert pretty tame and normal grooming habit]. I know, I know! This information makes me quirky and bold and real. Please clap.” Maybe try talking to people, or reading articles or books by people on similar subjects, and then don’t publish something that makes women think “am I supposed to feel weird about this?”

Anyone can write a book.

Biggest takeaway. So go for it! Follow your dreams! If you can help it, try not to write something that makes people cringe (unless it’s in the Stephen King spooky-cringe sort of way) but otherwise just have at it. Heck, try to get it published. I can just about promise that whatever you write, as long as you write from a place of truth, will be 1000000x better than something it seems too many people have read.

🙂

first of all, how DARE you buy me groceries

Séan and I were away this past weekend for a disconnected opportunity to recharge. (Disconnected from the internet, phones, etc – not each other.) We did the things that I grew up with and miss so much when summer stomps her way into the city. Not that there aren’t hundreds of great events and opportunities around the city during the summer, but summer can be very “go-go-go!” here, with all the concerts and rooftops and baseball games and whatever else. Back home, everything slows down. Summer at home is still all about getting outside, but not for a ‘gram-worthy picnic in Central Park or the switch over to rooftop bars for the season. Please reference the pictures below.

Anyway. I’m not going to tell this story in any sort of a way that makes sense, and you’re going to have to be okay with that, because only one small smidgen of it matters. Let’s not even call it a story. Here’s what happened: I woke up grumpy about something the day before we left, and immediately transferred all of that anger onto things that it really…just…wasn’t about. I can’t remember what nonsense was pissing me off that particular morning, but I do this a lot (I did it yesterday!) so you’ll get a more detailed example in a moment. Point being, I ended up apologizing to Séan and saying “I’m still working on being upset about the thing I’m actually upset about.”

I am still working on being upset about the thing that I’m actually upset about.

I also told him that I used to be worse! It’s true!

I don’t know if this hits home with anyone, but it is so freaking difficult and yet so necessary to trace anger back to its actual source. That’s probably true of any emotion, but I struggle most with anger and frustration.

Yesterday’s head-about-to-explode moment of the day happened when Séan brought home a load of groceries. Grocery shopping with Séan is a major anxiety trigger (you’ll soon know why) but I learned yesterday that it’s just as bad when he shops for the two of us.

He bought what could in my universe easily be a year’s supply of paper towels. I saw these paper towels, and the fire of my frustration ignited. Even in the moment it happened, it didn’t make sense to me. My discomfort was so instantaneous. I had to check in: alright, why am I feeling anything at all over paper towels?

It took some time, but maybe ten or fifteen minutes later I pieced together all the steps my brain had jumped between “excessive paper towels” and “resentment”. Do let me try to explain. Here is an outline of my reflective thought process (aka me talking to me):

  1. Oh wowza. That amount of paper towels makes me uncomfortable. #Tbt growing up and my mom treating paper towels like they were made of gold. Shouldn’t we be trying to use washable, normal towels? Wouldn’t that be better for the environment and less expensive? Plus we have so many dishcloths.
  2. We should calm down with the AC and plastic water bottles and the water usage, too. That’s how I always wanted to keep my household. My apartment. If I had my own.
  3. I never did end up having a space that was just my own.
  4. Y’know, I don’t feel any ownership over this space, or any right to a say in how we do things.
  5. …but I also don’t feel a real claim to living here because I can’t financially support myself.
  6. And if I had the money to do so I’d also just buy groceries at my own pace. And he’d see how that ends up working out for the way I eat, compared to him.
  7. But hang on, I really am bothered by our general waste of resources, whether it’s paper towels or food that gets thrown out before we eat it because it isn’t bought in a logical way with our schedules.
  8. Yeah, that drives me insane. I hate waste.
  9. I have waste anxiety.
  10. Because I don’t feel secure about any of my resources, like all of this might just go away, so I have to make everything last as long as possible and also save every penny.
  11. Oh.

So there we go! I have deep-seeded issues that present as freaking out over nothing. ~lol~

But alright, for real now – tracing my seemingly erratic emotions back to their source has been a huge help in stopping my anxiety from growing and turning into the horror show I know it can turn into. I’m not always successful, and I know that there are times when my physical presentation of anxiety is so strong that no logical thought process is even possible. I wanted to share this train of thought all the same, because the act of writing it down for this blog has given me a much more accessible (I think) way to present to Séan what happened yesterday. Working on my mental health is my job and mine alone, but it’s also important that I do what I can to help the person I live and spend my time with to understand my…well, particular “quirks” (some of my quirks are just straight up trauma so using the word “quirk” here isn’t too comfortable, alas, I can find no better way to explain my damn self).

Anyway friends, everyone already knows that I feel like I’m spinning in circles a lot of the time. It’s just nice to have a moment of clarity. Like Hannah B on Monday night. Where are my Bachelorette fans at?! Crossing my fingers for a strong cross-section of health blog readers and Bachelorette junkies!

My wish is that this post brings someone besides myself a little hope that we really can work on ourselves, and that progress is possible. I feel a tiny victory when I dig deep and learn something about myself, and I hope you’ve experienced those moments, too – and that you continue to. Especially my friends with anxiety, depression, intrusive thoughts, any and all of it – just trying to present your true self can be so much more work than we deserve! But we do the work. Keep doing the work. 🙂

if I get one more recruiter email for a vague marketing position I swe-

Hello! It’s Wednesday, so according to my boss (who is me) I must share something today.

How about a recap?! This past week, I:

…went jet skiing for the first time (as a passenger, anyway). Séan loves being on the water and I believe this is his favorite way to be on the water. Mine is kayaking. Or a pool float. But it was pretty cool to see the Statue of Liberty from an unfamiliar angle and to fly past the piers & under the Brooklyn Bridge. Plus it was my own Hitch moment, minus getting kicked in the face. And Will Smith.

…tested out the newly-tidied back patio with a couple of friends. We startled the most precious tiny skunk family by intruding on what is rightfully their space late into the night. I also didn’t realize the wifi wasn’t reaching out back and used all my phone data playing a lively “BBQ playlist” whilst outside. Good.

…sampled beautiful Chinese food at brand new restaurant that I don’t believe has opened officially, yet. Also, took a gamble on a Mexican restaurant in Hoboken and a bar/bistro in Jersey City, both of which were new to the two of us. Everything was delicious, and I’m not even hungry right now so you can trust my judgement. (I don’t love going out to eat while unemployed but I only fight Séan on the subject when it’s getting to be a lot. I’m trying to stop being the brat who takes enjoyment away from him. I’m a very cheap date, anyway, and obviously great company so come on.)

…found a coffee place nearby that brings out my productivity!! This is huge for me. I moved here in April and it took me this long to start exploring…but hey, it’s happening. Not to “not appreciate the now” and all that, but I’m looking forward to the weather cooling down even more now that I’ve discovered this cafe. It’s a long enough walk away, but it will be such a beautiful walk in the fall and coffee will be even more enticing when it’s not 9000 degrees out plus humidity.

…had a nice 14.5 hour workday on the set of a project I know very well, and got to watch my favorite actors play my favorite characters. I don’t usually act in anything I watch, or vice versa, but this was the most perfect exception.

…applied to so many jobs! I’m finally zeroing in on jobs I truly want to do, which I’ve found requires looking outside my usual sources. Which makes sense – those websites haven’t served me well thus far (except Craigslist, I ❤ Craigslist) so I was due for a change in approach. I’m now on just about every job-search platform in existence, and have learned a very valuable lesson: TURN OFF THE THING THAT LETS RECRUITERS REACH OUT TO YOU.

…posted some of my writing (the stylized, poetry-type variety) on Instagram for everyone to see. That’s a scary new thing I’m doing. I stand by my man Austin Kleon though, and his insistence on sharing your work throughout the process. It won’t serve me well to wait until I’ve been confidently writing and editing for years and then start sharing. You just gotta do. And be imperfect. And get there eventually.

My body has been a little funky and achey, but nothing I can’t manage. Séan and I did a lot of walking around on the Fourth of July, which was a very hot and sunny day here. I’m usually good with long walks, but I’ve learned that the hotter it is, the less my body can cope. Not that anyone feels good after a lengthy walk in oppressive heat, but my bod is pretty dramatic about it. My left side gets all worked up, my face gets super flushed, and the headache comes on strong. (I always wonder if my light sensitivity is a leftover concussion factor. Remind me to look into that.)

I forced us to head home before restarting the day and took a nap so deep I may have been dead. I knew I needed it, and I was able to bounce back because of it. I’m in the endless process of trying to pace myself a bit more and not be the “hell yeah let’s do it” girl I want to be, at least not all the time. I have to parent myself a bit more, but I’m getting there. I have a tendency to carry the “lost” moments (or the things I said no to) with me, but looking at that list of things I did do last week, I can take a deep breath and smile.

I’ve been reading a lot of good things lately but I also keep discovering more and more artists to fall in love with: would y’all prefer a list of independent artists who make weird/awesome things and could use some support, or a what-I’m-reading-lately type post next time? I realize no one will answer this question, like when beauty bloggers say “hiiiiii guys, SO MANY of you have been asking for me to do a (blank) video-” and literally no one asked. But just in case anyone has an opinion, please bless me with it. Thank you.

Don’t forget your sunscreen and chins up, you’ve got half the week left. Do something good with it.

guess what? complaining! THAT’S what.

I keep trying to summon this lovely positive feeling about July to start this month off on the right foot, but I’m trying to dig that out from underneath the bevy of things that have me on edge lately and that’s just not working.

I know we all love it when people complain on the internet, especially over trivial things, but here’s the fact of the matter…I can’t sit with all this nonsense in my head and get anywhere at all.

Not that this is new or rare, but I’m even struggling to write coherently at the moment because there’s too much “AHHH” in my mind. Do you know what I’m talking about? When there’s this buzz you can’t turn off? You can’t sort out your thoughts because you’ve got a blender in your skull, whirling everything around into a load of mush.

Side note: I had a cool metaphor about pieces of glass in a smoothie but then it didn’t make any sense and I have a headache and anyway let’s carry on.

Also I keep adding caffeine to the mix which is definitely not helping.

So here’s a list!

things that are currently making my head buzz that will NOT be making my head buzz by the end of this glorious July:

  • for too long, every single decision that I make on a daily basis has been entirely based on money and nothing else. whether or not I go work in a coffee shop, or take the bus downtown to walk around the park, or use the last of some item in the fridge…this is at the forefront of my worrying mind. I don’t even feel that great about booking work because I see those paychecks as nothing more than what bill they’ll need to go towards (in which those checks will barely make a dent). i’m looking at everything as steps towards balance that just aren’t big enough and it’s sucking the enjoyment out of everything. BLAH.
  • it’s so f r e a k i n g hot out and I’m not even living in a part of the world that’s really feeling the results of global warming. i’m worried we’re going to elect a president who doesn’t treat this as the urgent issue it is. this is actually a really valid concern, I realize that. but it’s part of the buzzing so there you have it.
  • do I have to see an allergist again?? why am I having food allergy-level reactions to vegetables and wheat beer and bug bites? my mosquito bite looks like I was pegged in the stomach with a tennis ball. (I know what that looks like because one time I was pegged in the stomach with a tennis ball.)
  • not to be needy (I am though), but i’m really wondering when Sean and I will ever been on the same life schedule. it’s only ever been this way, with him working nights and me being an “early to bed, early to rise” type of gal, but I’m less patient about it lately. maybe because it’s summer and I want to take advantage of all kinds of activities…or maybe because I know I’ll have to sell my soul to a steady job soon and won’t be able to do things on a whim anymore. or maybe both!
  • I am actually very willing to give up my current flexibility for a job that provides stability BUT I can’t seem to get my foot in the door anywhere. the online application process is not great. it’s a lot of hoping, wishing, waiting, and not really being able to put yourself out there in the same way you can when you physically go to an office and introduce yourself. (it’s not easy to get a good job?! a revelation!)
  • i’m very tired thanks to stress (and who I am as a person)
  • my upstairs neighbor sings while playing guitar now. at all hours.
  • there’s a literal buzz coming from every fan in this house which is surely not helping my head, but we need all the fans because #globalwarming

*sigh* …Okay. Thank you.

I think the thing with complaining is that we don’t always need our friends to respond with suggestions, solutions, and especially not reminders of how much worse it could be (it could always be worse). Those of us who are very aware that things could be much worse might tend towards trying to swallow the little things that are ticking them off rather than complain. I mean, I feel guilty all the time over allowing something that isn’t life-altering to upset me.

But we are allowed to be frustrated! And we are allowed to express that frustration (in a non-destructive manner, of course). Swallowing those thoughts and feelings has never helped me. I’ve learned that I have to release the feelings out into the open in order to let them go. And it helps to have friends who don’t say “hey, at least you aren’t (insert a person in a more destitute situation)” because all that does is bring back the guilt for feeling anything aside from happy and satisfied. Unless you have friends who are so detached from reality that their chief complaints are along the lines of “the new Instagram algorithm is actually ruining my life” and the like. You should hand those friends a newspaper.

I’m posting this knowing full well that I’m doing as much as I can to work towards financial stability and finding steady work, and I’m grateful for so much that is already going beautifully in my life. But I also know that as soon as I hit “post” – I’m done. It will be done. The buzz will be gone. Except for the ceiling fans.

If you’re feeling a little riled up lately, I encourage you to do the same. Don’t keep the lid on it. Let it all out, then laugh at yourself if need be, and move along. Heck, comment some of your complaints on this post, and you’ll get a resounding “here, here!” or “AMEN” from me. This isn’t a complain-free zone, or a positivity-only zone. This is an imperfect human zone. Let it all goooo.

🙂 x