This Isn’t What We Were Promised

I’m pretty sure this isn’t what we were promised. I’m pretty sure we grew up watching people succeed. I’m pretty sure we watched our role models have strong friendship groups, paying for expensive apartments with not great jobs, and then eventually getting the dream job because of random connections. We were promised there would still be time on the side for random adventures. We’d always be able to afford nice clothes and matching furniture and fancy meals. Our homes would always be clean. Even if there were wars, they wouldn’t really affect or hurt anyone. Nothing bad would ever happen to our real world The worst thing ever would be breakups or fighting over the same guy/girl or getting cheated on. None of our friends would ever die, and it was very rare if a family member did. And if a family member did die there would usually be a good inheritance or a free house.

We were the chosen ones. We were going to change the world. Each and every one of us would succeed. Even small things were big.

But what did we get instead? Two economic recessions. Years of war overseas that we have no business fighting. Friend groups are fickle. Politics actually matter. Most of us probably will never own a house or get our dream job or be out of debt.

I don’t want to say I’m angry. But I am. I don’t want to say I’m disappointed. But I am.

This isn’t what we were promised.

My Thoughts On a Crisis

The world is going through sudden pandemonium. And apparently none of us saw it coming. Even though we’ve been warned. Even though we’ve been writing books about it and making movies about it and scaring each other with it for years now. Because we never expected it to really happen.

Everything is changing, but I almost feel as if nothing has changed at all. My routines are still the same. I’m still alone all weekend because I don’t have any friends and my husband works weekends. I still do yoga most days. I still take my dog on walks and deal with her anxiety when there’s too much going on outside. I still go to work. I still buy things only in the amounts I need.

But life has still been thrown off kilter. I take public transit to work because it’s cheaper than filling my car up with gas every week. On Friday, I was one of the only people on most of my buses. I’ve been told the freeways feel empty. Everything is being closed or cancelled. And my company’s sales dropped by 50% in two days. Which means they can’t afford to pay all of their employees unless we drop down to four days a week. On Monday we’ll find out if more days need to be cut. Which means I’ll lose money when I’m barely making it as it is. Which means the review and raise my offer letter promised I’d get a month ago most likely aren’t ever going to happen. Which means I’m once again questioning every decision I’ve made in my recent years.

I sometimes wish I’d never moved to Alabama. I was making good money before that move. I was stable. But I was wild. I was going out and drinking and trying things that I once said I’d never try. I was staying out late and getting up early and working two jobs. But I was having fun. I was also in my early 20s. I’m not in my early 20s anymore.
I often wish I’d never quit my job at Starbucks. I had good benefits. I always knew I’d get hours. I had friends at work that I enjoyed talking to and listening to and hanging out with outside of work. I had stability. If this pandemic had hit then, that large corporation would make sure I was taken care of as a valuable employee. But I was depressed. I didn’t feel heard by the other supervisors or by my manager. I tried for months to quit that job. I didn’t have weekends or evenings off. My back always hurt.
I sometimes wish we hadn’t moved home to California. My boyfriend turned fiance turned husband wouldn’t have been screwed over by someone I was friends with in high school. And he wouldn’t have spent six months feeling depressed and isolated because that’s what small, shitty towns do to you if you’re not ready for them. Half my stuff wouldn’t still be in his dad’s basement or in random places in my childhood home. I would still feel like I could make it on my own. But I’d still be dealing with Alabama weather, Alabama wages, Alabama politics and everything that goes with that. I would still be told by old, slow, southern women that I talk too fast and be hated when I apologize and tell them I’m from California. I would still be homesick.
I wish I hadn’t quit my graduate program. I loved that program. I loved the people that came with it. I would be almost done by now if we hadn’t left. I would have a sense of purpose. I would know that I’d be actually stable in the future. Because I chose a program here and went through the process of writing essays and getting more letters of recommendation and getting accepted so I could finish only to be riddled with so much anxiety and stress and depression that I decided it was better to wait longer. Or maybe not go back at all, because I want to be in another program that is actually good where the professors actually care and where I actually know what is going on. I want to be part of program that I’m excited about it. But I’m not excited about much these days.
I quite frequently wish we hadn’t moved to San Diego. We didn’t have the money saved for this move. I feel so sunk in the hole that I’ll probably never get out. I don’t know anyone and I have no friends. Covered CA keeps fucking up my health insurance and has now cancelled it without telling me. I don’t make enough to keep myself afloat. I am struggling worse than I have since my mom died. I 100% don’t know how I’m going to get through this. But I know that I will. And I know that my partner is happy. I know that I did this for him. I know that I have someone to spend my life with and see everyday, and not everyone has that. I know that we’ll take care of each other. For better or for worse. In sickness and in health. We’re going to be okay, eventually.

So our world is sick. Actual insane (most likely white ladies) are buying up every roll of toilet paper, bottle of hand sanitizer, and non perishable food item on the shelves in literally every store. These people actually plan to never go outside again. Sucks for them. But you know what? The world is still turning. Most of us will survive this. We’ll someday get to say “remember when?” And hopefully this will open our nation’s eyes to how much we need healthcare reform.
After days and days of rain, the sun came out today. I got to feel it on my skin and was reminded that very soon it will be warm enough for me to spend hours laying on the beach. Because I only live a mile from the ocean.

Go outside, even if it’s only for a minute. Take a breath of fresh air. And then go read a book, do some yoga, watch a movie, binge some netflix, pet your dog, and kiss your partner. Take this chaotic time and turn it into a time to remember what peace is like. Remember what stillness is like. Remember what it’s like to not feel the need to keep up with everything going on. Take this as a time to hit reset for a little while.
Remember what the sun feels like.

Saying Goodbye

Bobby and I turned in our keys yesterday. We are finally moved out of our first little house that we shared. We no longer have to deal with crazy neighbors that hiss at our dog or throw possible poisoned bread in the backyard. But we also can no longer walk to the movie theater or to the mall to get energy drinks.

I’m not working anymore, but Bobby’s last day is Friday. Next week we say goodbye (and good riddance) to living in the South. We say goodbye to overly religious racists making up too much of the population around us. We say goodbye to people who use our Creator as an excuse for their prejudiced actions. We say goodbye to unwalkable city planning and drivers who want cyclist commuters to die simply because they’re on a bike. We say goodbye to not earning a livable wage. We say goodbye to so many things.
But we also say goodbye to good music. We say goodbye to the history of modern recording. We say goodbye to seeing zoo lions without going to a zoo whenever we want. We say goodbye to good friends. We say goodbye to cheap rent. We say goodbye to so many things.

I am so excited to say hello again. I’m excited to go home and be home and feel home. I’m excited to breath fresh air and for the shade to be cooler than the sun. I’m excited to be out of the humidity.
I’m excited to adventure again. And I’m more than excited to start somewhere new with my favorite human.

It’s Cool To Be an Alcoholic

When did it become a normal thing to fetishize drinking tons of alcohol?

I noticed a while ago that a lot of shirts for sale have sayings on them like, “Rosé all day” “Coffee and wine, feelin’ fine” “Relationship Status: Wine”

I saw a girl wearing a wine sloganed sweater at the gym...
image from Target.com

I counted 11 different wine sloganed shirts on Target’s website alone.
I used to love wine. I still like it. I’m drinking a glass right now. But most of these shirts are probably being bought by underage teens. Kids who will grow up thinking day drinking is normal. And again, there’s nothing wrong with day drinking on its own, but when it becomes the norm, then how do you even know what a day without alcohol is like? How do you drive?

I’ve had far more fun sober days than non-sober days. Maybe I’m just getting old. Because I’m not that conservative. I’m just over people who know nothing about wine fetishizing it. Because I’m almost positive that the people who buy these shirts probably spend $25 on five bottles of cheap wine rather than on one bottle of good wine.

Maybe I’m just annoyed. I just don’t think it’s that cool to be an alcoholic.

We Have an Announcement

Back home currently has the most snow in the United States. A lot of feet of snow have fallen. Flagstaff, Arizona has a ton of snow right now also. In fact, a friend of mine that lives in Tucson posted a snowy video today too! Needless to say, I miss the snow. Alabama has no snow, but that’s no surprise.
And snow isn’t even the most important thing to me, especially in a place that I want to live.

I moved to Alabama sort of on a whim. I thought I was being called here. I thought my life was going to change and I would be put on a path that would launch me into a career I could only dream about. It’s funny how I’m usually wrong about these things. Because what I thought I was stepping into was not at all what I actually stepped into.

I had not lived here six months when my mother passed. I was reeling from her loss and found comfort in alcohol and watching stupid Netflix shows with someone who was starting to become a very good friend. It wasn’t much later that he was more than a friend and I fell in love with Bobby.
Moving to Alabama changed my life. Losing my mother changed my life. But loving Bobby has changed my life for the better.

Last year, Bobby and I took a road trip across the country because I was homesick. Along the way we stopped in Flagstaff, Arizona to buy some film and get coffee at Dutch Bros. because I discovered they have one there. We had been in the city half an hour when we both decided we wanted to live there. We planned to make the move after I finished my graduate program, and I would just go through the licensing process in Arizona. I had some anxiety about the difficulty of finding someone to supervise me so I could get my license, when I would have no contacts in Arizona, but I figured it would work itself out.
But I’ve been homesick for a long time. Alabama has made me more and more miserable. I thought if I quit my job and made a change that I would be happier, but in December I only felt more depressed. I felt like I couldn’t make it. I just wanted to go home.
So I called my dad. And I called my brother. And they said that Bobby and I could move back to my childhood home for the summer to save money. So we’re leaving Alabama in May and will be in California for three months. I’m ready to go home.
Bobby and I decided that we didn’t want to wait until I finished school, especially when the licensing process in a different state might be challenging. So I’m going to finish my degree in Arizona. We’ll be moving there in August, and I am so excited.

Since I’ve been missing the snow and sick of all the rain here, I figured now would be a good time to announce that we’re leaving. Finally.

30 Days Done

As I’ve said before, every January I try to do 30 straight days of Yoga with Adrienne. I love that she does this every year and it gives me an opportunity to build momentum for the year ahead of me. Today marks the end of January, thus I have done yoga for 30 days straight. (31 days really, because I did yoga on the 1st of the month too, even though her 30 days doesn’t start until the 2nd)

I feel accomplished. I feel like I can do this year right. I have a lot of things planned for this year, some big changes are coming that haven’t been announced yet, and I am pumped. I want to step forward with confidence. I may not get it all right, but I can do it. I am smart and I am capable.

I am setting goals for myself to make myself a better person, inside and out.

What goals are you setting? I’d love to hear them.

130

Not many people are aware of how much I struggle with my weight. Inside my head I have been overweight since I was fifteen. I don’t think this is actually true though.

Before I started high school, before I hit puberty, I was barely a size zero. I fully believed I would be able to fit into a size two my entire life. I weighed 98 pounds when I was a freshman and I thought I would always be small and always be able to eat however I wanted. My sophomore year I was having some knee problems, so I couldn’t be as active and I remember being in my english class and looking down and for the first time noticing my stomach. I wasn’t fat. But in my mind I was.

I remember going shopping for shorts with my mom when I was 16. I was doing physical therapy to repair my knee that I had messed up running track, but I was the largest I had ever been. I tried on the size that I thought I should be and it was way too small. This is one of the reasons I won’t buy pants from places like JC Penney or Target, because their sizing is off. A four at Old Navy is an eight at JC Penney. Trying on a six at 16 and having it be too small shattered me. I felt so fat. But a six is not even large. It’s barely considered a medium. But my head believed I needed to be a two, which I will never be again.

My weight has gone up and down over the years. I’ve been in really good shape and I’ve been in terrible shape. I’ve gained weight and I’ve lost it and people have noticed. All I want now is to be healthy.

This year I started a bullet journal, and I’ve dedicated one of the pages to trying to reach my goal weight. I have no idea if I’ll reach it, because muscle weighs more than fat, and who knows if I’ll lose motivation. I want to weigh 130, because I feel like that’s a good weight for my height. However, muscle weighs more than fat, so if I drop in size but not weight, I guess that’s okay too. I guess I just want to see if I can do it. I want to be accountable.

So here’s to 2019 and health and happiness. I want to be my best self.