There and Back Again.

Hi. This is awkward. It’s awkward isn’t it? I haven’t been here since July 7th 2017. So I’m just going to get this out there: I totally ghosted this blog. Hard. Not to mention all the lovely people who have provided me with feedback and support on here. I have a half written post from May 7th 2017, and that’s it. I haven’t even written since then (unless we’re counting comments of ‘aww’ on Reddit cat posts, which I doubt we are). And so many times I’ve started drafting posts in my head, but I haven’t followed through. And the last several months or so that’s really been eating away at me. Because I LOVE writing. I can’t draw -yep, not even so much as a proportionate stick figure. Writing is the one thing I can do (don’t worry, I can also read).

I think part of the problem is that I have felt like I’ve lost my voice. Like, what even is this blog? Do you know what I mean? When I look back over the content, I love what I’ve accomplished, so it’s not about that. But I don’t know how to move forward. I’m in a different place in my life now, and I can’t exactly write like I used to. But it also doesn’t feel like I can’t NOT write (whoa double negative, so sorry, it’s been awhile. I’m going to go ahead and power through though so as not to lose this momentum I’m feeling).

Basically, this post right now is an exercise in Figuring Your Shit Out. Usually when I sit down to write something I have a half formed plan in my mind of what I’m going to say. Not today ladies and gentleman. Today we lean in and see what happens. This could end in joyous tears or a total meltdown. Actually scratch that: either of those things can happen, but the one thing that CANNOT happen is for this to end. I don’t care if it’s on this blog or in the pages of a notebook – I HAVE TO KEEP WRITING. Because not having this creative outlet feels like suffocating. And trust me, I have asthma, I know what it feels like not to breathe. And going over a year without writing for the fun of it feels exactly like not breathing.

I’ve got to admit, having this blog as a space to write keeps me accountable to my creativity. Which is why I opened up it’s pages and started to brush away the dust that’s been collecting. I’ve found that I don’t love my site address as much as I used to, and that’s okay. It feels like greeting an old friend and finding out that you don’t quite know how to talk to each other anymore (plus, I’ve completely forgotten how to navigate wordpress *insert dizzy face emoji here*). It might take time to relearn what it’s like to be with each other, but it can also be an exciting experience, to see how each has grown. And as I start to look through old posts, I’m reminded of the good times and the bad times. This grounds me in knowing that these times will continue and I can show up for all of it.

And, hey, you know what? This doesn’t feel so awkward anymore!

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Eighteen Days of Existential Panic

18 days.

That’s how long I have before I start my new (and very real, grown-up) job. I have spent quite some time deciding on how I’d like to spend these next 18 days. The last 18 days of youthful freedom that I will likely ever know. It’s not as if I live a carefree (or bill free) life right now, but this will be my first steps into true adulthood as I join the Monday-Friday Professional Squad. And if you’re wondering, yes. I am nauseous. Extremely. All 19 years of my education have been leading up to this point (I’ll have to get back to you on whether I think those 19 years were well spent or not…but honestly if I’m struggling to figure out what to do with 18 days, I doubt I would’ve found anything to do in those 19 years besides school anyways).

I’m excited to finally have one of those things adults call “careers.” But that’s another 18 days away. That’s 18 days of thinking about what I’m preparing to do. For an introspective introvert (hmm I guess, in context, those two words basically mean the same thing) like myself, that’s damn near deadly levels of potential contemplation. I mean don’t get me wrong, I’ve tried not to think about it, but when the hell does that ever work? I’ve been distracting myself with books, podcasts, dating, my cat, etc. etc. but the existential panic is never quite subdued. Like what even am I, ya know? I guess I’m kind of struggling with feeling that if I don’t have this career goal I’ve been working towards, then what do I have? In these next 18 days, who am I?

And at first I hated that feeling. Because if there’s one thing I’ve always told myself, it’s that I won’t be defined by my job. But the more I think about it, the more I realize that maybe this strange, anxious, empty feeling I’m experiencing right now isn’t about that. I am not defined by this chosen career path, but this path is part of the definition of me. I’m so terrified by the future I’m walking towards because never have I ever dedicated so much of myself to one thing. And if this one thing doesn’t work out, will I be okay with that? If this one thing, which I thought made up a fundamental part of who I am, turns out not to be what I expected?

I suppose in 18 days, I will begin the journey of discovering the answer to those questions.

But in the meantime, fuck it, let’s go to the beach!

There is Only Now

Okay, so I don’t wanna get ahead of myself and jinx anything, but I think I might be getting my life together. I’m going on interviews for a big kid job (gimme dat comprehensive insurance package), I’m getting better at cooking (honestly…I only ruin about 30% of what I attempt to make these days), and I’m not really mortified by the prospect of dating anymore (which, I like to think, is because I’ve adopted a cavalier ‘I don’t give a fuck’ attitude of late…which come to think about it is probably having a pretty profound holistic impact).

I am at the strangest point that I think I have ever been in my life. I’m about to embark on my career journey, and that’s like a “whoa what the fuck” kind of moment for me. I’m dating this guy (who I hope isn’t reading this, because I don’t think we’re quite at a point for him to be reading about himself on my blog), and he’s *actually really dope. *note that I said ‘actually’ not because I’m surprised that he’s awesome, but because I’m surprised that I could find someone so awesome to date. As we all know, my track record with dating isn’t winning any awards. I think people think I’m, like, weird or something. I know, you totally don’t see it.

With all these feelings that I can (1) succeed in my career and (2) have fun while dating, I’m feeling like more of an adult than usual. Yesterday, roommate and I even installed our giant ass air conditioner by ourselves. Fuck yeah. We just looked at our bodies and said, “You will be stronger for the next twenty minutes.” It’s like Kimmy Schmidt always says: a person can stand just about anything for 10 seconds, then you just start on a new 10 seconds. All you’ve got to do is take it 10 seconds at a time.

And I feel like, for whatever reason, I’ve been taking that to heart lately. To use therapist lingo, I’m trusting the process. Sure looking for a job is stressful and dating is filled with so many unknown variables. But if I focus on each and every one of those ten seconds, I get to live my life here and now. I get to enjoy knowing that I’m proud of my work, even when it’s difficult. I get to fall in love without even noticing and stressing that it’s happening. I don’t get to simply survive the day to day of life, I get to live it.

To quote a line from an author (The Inheritance Cycle) I’m quite fond of: Live in the present, remember the past, and fear not the future, for it doesn’t exist and never shall.

There is only now.

Orchids on the Beach (Vol. 1)

I bring you this post (originally handwritten, might I brag) from the beach. Where I currently (well not once you’re reading this I suppose) sit out on the pier appreciating the weather, lake, and my current lack of responsibility. It’ll be a tough day indeed when I don’t have something professionally productive (because obviously this is productive, just not something I can turn into a paycheck, and I’ve got a cat to support) to do at 4:00PM on a Tuesday afternoon (or Thursday afternoon when I’m posting this for that matter).

So let me set the scene for you. We’ve got all the makings of a beautiful day. Sun, warmth, beach, the Chicago skyline off in the distance. Truly, I wish you were here with me seeing this…(wait, holy shit I have the power of technology, I can take a picture!). Unless, of course, you are here with me seeing this, in which case, I’d like to take a moment to extend my thanks for not saying hello. I don’t think my little introverted heart could’ve taken it.

*quickly panics that she’s just jinxed herself into not escaping this pier before someone says hello to her*

*glances around furtively*

*realizes she’s paranoid*

*immediately gets licked in the face by a passing dog*

Which, of course, prompted the owner to engage me in polite, apologetic conversation. Damn you, Universe.

Anyways, wasn’t I talking about something? Oh right, the scene. Aside from face-licking dogs, you’ve got your other normal beach things. The runners, getting their health on, reminding me why I don’t run. There are other loners, like me, who appear to be contemplating their very existence (especially that guy, he is definitely in some deep existential ish). No one else appears to be writing, so I’m guessing I’m the only one handwriting (brag brag brag [insert quote about ‘back in the good old days’]) a blog post at this moment (although I suppose they could be drafting it in their heads…I shouldn’t project my own writing skills on to others). I can see at least 6-8 (I’m bad at math) people in my immediate vicinity who are staring at their phones because who comes to the beach to enjoy nature? They come for the bomb ass selfie opportunities and stellar lighting, obviously.

Aaaaand a man just dove off of the pier (where it clearly says ‘no diving’)… he appears to be in shock of the water temperature…*double checks to be sure he’s not drowning* …he’s dragging himself very ungracefully back onto the pier…wait…oh hell, he’s talking to me…dude I have headphones in AND I’m actively writing. Ugh, people.

—Two Minutes Later—

Update: The water is cold; Diving man does not recommend. Thank Saturn he shared this vital (and totally not obvious) information with me. Just think, you were this close to never knowing that water you’re not currently jumping into is cold.

Oh holy stars, it’s an epidemic out here! And the disease that’s spreading is people disregarding that I clearly don’t want to talk to them. Someone just let their two inch tall dog lick my leg. Like brah, really? That dog is roughly the size of a paper towel roll…empty. You’re telling me you couldn’t stop it? I missed the first part of what paper-towel-dog-owner said, but I did catch this gem after muting my music: “Sorry, he (and I’m hoping he was talking about his dog here and not himself in third person) has got a thing for the left side of things.” Wait, what the fuck? Also, spoilers, the dog was on my right side. What is even happening out here? Maybe I’ve accidentally stumbled onto my new blog series: I sit at a beach and see how many people (and other living things) interrupts my “me time.” The idea has potential. And apparently I have a face and/or body langauge that says (despite my best efforts), “please talk to me.” Might as well retaliate against this curse by using an enjoyable self-care activity. Take that one, Universe!

*immediately apologizes to Universe out of fear of retribution*

Anyways, the scene (I swear I was initially working up to a point here). There are a lot of couples here. Couples strolling along the pier. Couples skipping rocks (no joke, it’s fucking adorable…and also impossible at the moment given the current wind velocity and wave size). Couples bike riding. Couples with children (wait, they call those families don’t they? …side note: oww, someone just kicked a rock at me, probably *squints* accidentally).

But yeah, couples. Lots of ‘em. Which reminds me, I know I mentioned I went on a date…okay, fine I went on two dates now…okay, fine soon to be three dates. It’s been so much fun (and hella stressful) to be back in the dating world. This day at the beach has helped remind me of why I endure the stress and the heartbreak of dating. The couples. There would be no purpose to my life without the humans (and cat) in it. I need connection. I want it. I love the people in my life, and I want to keep feeling this type of love.

So I’ve got to remember days like this. Days at the beach. When I can so clearly see the shape of love around us. I’ve always felt like I have these two sides of myself warring with one another. The sarcastic, jaded, closed-off side. And the hopeless, romantic, full-of-love side. And I tell you what, it’s days like this, sitting here at the beach and watching the different fabrics of people’s lives interweave into something beautiful that I can really see how I can be all of these things.

I can be exactly everything that I am. I want to be that, and I only want to be with someone who loves that. Whoever and wherever the other half of my couple is, they don’t need to be cut from the same cloth, because our material is all the same. I’ll be exactly me and they’ll be exactly them. And if we can be that, we’ll make an amazing patchwork design indeed.

I’m Sorry, What Did You Say Your Name Was?

Today I am going to share with you the totally true story of how I am only romantically interested in guys who have one of two names. No, I am not going to tell you those names, because frankly, it’s none of your business. But basically, if you’re not named X or Y, then I’m not interested. And this is entirely by no direct will of my own. Half the time on dating sites you don’t even know someone’s name until you start talking with them and inquire.

AND YET.

The universe seems to have dictated that the only men I’m allowed to date are those named X or Y. Being that most dating sites don’t have a filter so that you can avoid certain names (or apparently certain personality characteristics), I’m in a bit of a conundrum on how to proceed. I mean, maybe there’s something innately about me that causes me to be subconsciously (yo, it took me almost two minutes to correctly spell this damn word, and YES that is with autocorrect, the traitorous swine) drawn to X and Y.

I don’t want this to be my life, but I can’t seem to avoid it. I would love to live in a world where I can date an A or a B. Not that I entirely mind the comic nature of my life, but it is getting a little weird. It’s not as if I would ever not date someone because of their name. But I will lay in bed laughing at myself and the (at times) sheer ridiculousness of my own existence.

Anywho, as you may have guessed, I have been on a date recently (which is how I know this name thing has continued to follow me…like a curse…or my cat around the house at breakfast time). If you’ll indulge me for a moment, I’d love to discuss some of the pros and cons of this date.

Pros: 

He was funny, smart, nice, into his own volunteer work (and mine, which like, never happens…he asked me actual questions about the nature of my volunteer work…I didn’t know people did that on dates). We ended up talking for three hours and I hadn’t even noticed the time passing. If you can’t tell, I’m a little excited. This was the first real date I’ve been on in quite some time. And let me just say, if you’re out there reading this, you have certainly won me over for a second date. But actually…please don’t be out there reading this…if you could go ahead and travel back in time to a point at which you have no knowledge of these words existing, that’d be great.

Cons: 

Nope, can’t think of any. The only con would be if he’s currently reading this thinking “huh, she’s a lot weirder than I originally picked up on.” And trust me, I’m pretty sure he noticed that I’m a little quirky. It’s kind of hard to miss.


So to summarize (because I know how invested you are in my life…and by ‘you are’ I mean ‘I am’), let me just say that I’m feeling a little more optimistic about my romantic life than I was a couple of months ago. The ‘me’ I was a year ago is not the ‘me’ I am now. And in terms of relationships, this means I’m really tired of taking shit and feeling like I’m settling. It’s okay to know you’re own worth, to know that you’re awesome. And by the rings of Saturn, you deserve to be treated by those standards.

So I hope I get that second date. But if I don’t, that won’t in any way stop me from chasing love.


And if you are still reading this because you couldn’t master the complex mechanics of time travel and thought “eh well I’m already here, fuck it,” then I’d like to take a moment to apologize that you had to read about yourself (however briefly). And I’d like to follow that apology up by acknowledging that yes I do put my life in a blog, yes I talk to myself while I write, and no I won’t be stopping this any time soon. If you hold the belief that you can work with these eccentricities, then by all means, call me *wink wink* ….or maybe just *wink* …two winks might look kind of aggressive…