Happy New Year.

Here we are. The ending of another year, and so I’m going to keep with tradition and try to write yet another insightful reflection of the past 365 days.

This was an off year for me. There were parts that were fucking terrible. My depression had moments this year where it was on par with 2012/2013. It got pretty bad. I self-harmed for the first time since 2014 back in June. I called out of work one day because I couldn’t force myself to get out of bed. I’ve spent the majority of this year feeling trapped.

I’ve felt trapped by my own decisions. I had been so hyper-focused on getting a degree and trying to prove something to myself and everyone else — that I wasn’t a psycho fuckup of a human being — that I never stopped to think about what happens after I finish. What am I going to do next? Not that there’s anything wrong with just having a bachelor’s degree, I truly used to believe that would be it for me. I’d just find a job that paid the bills and work forever and that’s it. That’s what I get this time around.

I began to reject that reality in June, which is coincidentally when my depression began to beat me into submission. I began to think about going back to school for a master’s, only to realize that my undergrad GPA isn’t competitive. Like, at all. There’s reasons for that, reasons that I’ve clung to and argued when people would bring it up, but at the end of the day, my undergrad GPA sucked because I didn’t put enough effort in.  The classes I loved that were taught well, I aced. The classes that didn’t have an attendance policy, I aced. But unfortunately, the majority of undergrad classes aren’t taught well. The majority have attendance policies —which I still think are fucking stupid and an easy way to dock points for no goddamn reason whatsoever. If you can be absent and still produce quality work I think you should be allowed to but WHATEVER, that’s just my arrogant self still being annoyed for getting B’s in classes where I got A’s on all the work… Some are classes that you love but are taught with zero effort because the professor just wants to get back to his research lab and doesn’t give a shit if you learn or not. Some are boring, mind-numbing courses where it’s a miracle if you can force yourself to show up and waste your own time for an hour. Some are taught by sociopaths whose sole purpose is to see how many students they can fail. The value of college isn’t necessarily education, I think it’s discipline. Which is sad, because it’d be nice to learn something while forking out thousands of dollars to an institution, but alas, c’est la vie.

So I’ve been facing this harsh reality. Yes, I have a bachelor’s degree. I crossed that milestone off my list of life accomplishments. I was so happy and proud that day when I walked across the stage at Mizzou Arena. But now what? There are very few grad programs that I can currently apply to and be considered just because my undergrad GPA is below a 3.0. (That actually causes me physical pain to admit.) So… what? I take classes outside of a degree to boost my GPA? I get a second bachelor’s? Non-degree seeking courses aren’t eligible for any sort of financial aid. Oof. That’s a lot of money. How many courses would I need to ace to boost my GPA? 3? 4? 5? Throw in money for textbooks, etc., we’re looking at a few thousand dollars.

This is where my depression found an opening in my otherwise healthy mental state. I felt trapped. Trapped by money. Trapped by my stupid, impulsive ideas at age twenty-three to try and be pre-med again even though I tried that out TWICE at Truman and both times I decided it wasn’t for me. Yeah, sure, let’s try it again. Oh hey, you don’t like it? It’s not your thing? For the third time? What a shocker.

It’s not that good things didn’t happen this year. It’s just that the bad things that happened outweighed them. Going to NYC for work was so fun. So fun. Highly recommend visiting NYC and I look forward to going back just for fun so I can really explore. But then as the year progressed, and high season arrived, I found myself walking on eggshells at work, trying to be perfect, and being terrified of being fired because someone else messed up something. I jump every time I get a text message because I’m worried it’s about work.

This year beat the crap out of me. I found myself in situations that made me feel small and insignificant, from work to the relationship I wound up in this year. All the while I’ve been clinging to alcohol to fix all my problems, a lesson that I’ve learned over and over again doesn’t work.

The past four weeks I’ve adopted a new way of dealing with my stress. When I get home from work and feel like drinking an entire bottle of wine, I go to the gym. When I feel insignificant, I go to the gym. When I feel worthless and invisible, I go to the fucking gym. I sweat, I pick up heavy things, and I leave feeling like a goddamn person again. People could say that I’m just going from one coping mechanism to another, but when I wake up the next day and can begin to see the product of my hard work, I feel powerful, and sexy, and good. Alcohol has never done that for me.

 

So here’s to 2019,

to not dating fuckboys you know aren’t right for you,

to being honest and upfront and putting yourself out there,

to having the guts to say, “Yeah, I fucked up, so let’s try and fix it.”

 

I refuse to be paralyzed by fear.

I refuse to let myself believe that I don’t deserve love.

I’m moving forward,

and I’m going to find a way through all of this.

 

Happy New Year.

12/28/18 part two

I never realize how much shit I have until I’m getting ready to move. And then all of a sudden, it becomes painfully obvious that I have a ton of shit. Every time I move, I clear it out. I donate the clothes I have no interest in wearing, I sell the things that are collecting dust in storage bins or closets. Yet every time I move, there’s always more. More shit. More clothes that I ordered online out of impulse and then didn’t love it as much in person as I thought it would, but didn’t return it because I might wear it for SOMETHING. I often complain that I don’t have the funds to travel, and yet I look at all this shit that I’ve purchased over the last year and a half and most of it I don’t actually use. How much money is hanging in this closet? In a moment, I felt that I needed it. In a moment, I felt that I would wear it. And I never did. Those moments that I thought would come never did, and that’s how I have a closet full of clothes and yet nothing to wear on some days. It’s batshit.

We’re basically programmed to shop. Advertising is everywhere. I’m slowly beginning to unplug from it. Working in luxury retail hasn’t helped me much. I begin to catch myself thinking about everything that I need for my work wardrobe. Not necessarily the brands that we sell at work, but just things I can buy to make myself look better. Constantly upgrading. Constantly buying new outfits so that I don’t become the girl who wears the same 5 outfits every week. I had to stop. I had to stop online shopping with a glass of wine after work, and I had to remind myself that even though my coworkers see me wear the same outfits every week, the customers don’t necessarily see that.

Plus, it doesn’t matter. I make $20/hour and because of where I work, it’s easy to try on the Gucci belt or the Jimmy Choo’s and think, “After my discount, I could pay this off with a couple of paychecks.” It’s stupid. It’s SO stupid. I make $20/hour! Why in the world should I be stretching the leftover money I have into designer shit that I would only wear to work — because I feel like a fraud wearing it anywhere else — when I could be throwing the few hundred into my savings account??

I’m currently planning a trip to Iceland with one of my best friends and her husband, and that’s helped keep me in check. I’m so excited for this trip. We’re tentatively going January 2020, and probably booking the flights and everything this summer. I’m so excited to see the northern lights and hike the ice caverns and yes, even take some swimsuit photos in Blue Lagoon for good ol’ instagram, that now when I look at something I want, I think, Does this matter more than a horseback tour? Or a whale-watching trip? Or eating at a nice restaurant in Reykjavik? Nine times out of ten, no. My wanderlust is much stronger than my materialism.

My materialism continues to diminish the older I get. My teenage self would be so obsessed with where I’m at right now, but I’m just like, Get me out of here. I want to move to Colorado like everybody else my age, and spend some goddamn time outside. I want to laugh. I want to not start my day with three cups of coffee and a pound of makeup. I want to set all the high heels that I own on fire. I want a job that doesn’t make me think about jumping off the roof every hour.

Sometimes I think taking a hiatus from social media would be good for me, but at the same time, I like creating content. I like messing around with new photo filter apps and posting to instagram. I like plugging my writing. (Although there hasn’t been much this year to plug). Yet at the same time, I hate how fucking shallow it all is. Everything revolves around it. We’re all just keeping up with the Jones’. Betty posted about her engagement so Erica has to take pictures with her left hand in front of everything to remind the world that she too is engaged. Meanwhile there’s single people (like myself) rolling their eyes whenever another cheesy engagement posts pops up on their news feed. So excited to spend the rest of my life with my best friend and love of my life! I’m so blessed that this man found his way into my life!! If I had a dollar for every time I sigh heavily and tell my dog that I’m going to die alone, I wouldn’t be stressed about my budget for my upcoming Iceland trip. 

On an older, now deceased, version of this blog, I once wrote that my priorities changed after I attempted suicide. And they did. I still stand by that. As I slowly rose out of my depression,  I realized that there is a lot more to being alive than just what people think of you. It’s one of those cliche moments. It took a near-death experience to make me wake the fuck up, but it kind of did. I have a strong faith in the power of the universe and existence but I’m not big on believing in miracles, but the reason I’m still alive was almost an act of god. The person that showed up at my apartment had absolutely no reason to, he just had a feeling. I’m supposed to be here. I have no fucking clue why, but I am.

So I’m trusting my gut. Listening to my heart. Trying to spend more time with the people I find fascinating who set my soul on fire and want to travel the world with me. Meanwhile, I really need to start cleaning out my closets again so that when I finally pull the trigger on this move, I’m ready to go.

Cannonball.

I’m holding myself accountable to keep writing. Especially when my last post was about how I want to write my way out of this slump I’ve been in and then I go a week without writing at all. So we’re off to a great start.

I lifted today for the first time in awhile!! I made it to the gym on Monday morning and I was so exhausted and still somewhat depressed that I just did some cardio, but hey, it’s better than nothing. Today I was just feeling it. The temperature finally dropped a bit, and this morning it was 75 so my dog and I went for a two mile power walk. It was great. We almost kept going for another mile but people were beginning to take advantage of the cooler weather and do yard work, and the fresh cut grass smell was really hitting me hard. I cleaned up the kitchen, did some dishes, ate lunch, lounged around for a bit, and then finally got restless enough to go hit the gym.

I am weak AF. Again. But it’s okay! I’ll get it back. It’s not like it’s permanently gone. My body is naturally really athletic so the nice thing is that if I’m just consistent then I can build strength pretty quickly. Plus it just feels so goooood.

I ended with abs and I literally just laid on my mat for a good two minutes before I got up, and the biggest smile was on my face. I love working out. I love lifting.

I’ve been at a crossroads lately at work. Another new opportunity presented itself to me.

I haven’t even been with this company for a year yet. I’m almost there, I started on August 1st.

On March 5th, I moved into my current role that’s a pretty boring desk job that I’m already kind of over.

And recently I was offered yet another move within the company.

It scared me. When I’m mentally in a good place, I love constant change. It’s thrilling to me. I lean into it and just see where it takes me. That’s how I wound up in Saint Louis. Something was calling me to this city and instead of questioning it, I just went for it.

But I haven’t been in the best mental space lately. So this new opportunity, this new change, scared the shit out of me. I’m terrified of disappointing people. This is something I’ve never done before, what if I’m not good at it?

I turned it down at first, and about a week later I realized that was a mistake. Lucky for me, the offer was made by a woman who fully understands that sometimes you just need a little more time to think.

I’m going for it. Once again, this newness is calling to me. There’s something in this decision that I honestly feel like I am supposed to do. Plus there’s a slight pay bump, which is always nice.

I think deep down, we always know what is right for us and what isn’t. The trick is just not letting other people or our own fears and insecurities get in the way of that.

On top of all of this, I’ve spent the majority of my previous weekends doing nothing. I got an offer to go out tonight with some friends, and I’m going. It’ll be fun. I need some fun in my life.

Lean into the new. Forget wading into the pool from the steps, just do a motherfucking cannonball in the deep end.