Personal

Life Review: 2018

Holy shit.

That pretty much sums up my 2018.  You may have noticed, I’ve been scarce (again).  Well, you can thank 2018 for that this time.  Let’s recap.

The Good

  • Went to Baltimore and essentially completed my Masters thesis
  • Started bullet journalling
  • Surprised my mom on Mother’s Day
  • Kidlet moved in with us
  • Awesome visit with friends
  • 10 year anniversary with the hubs
  • Had an awesome visit with the whole family
  • New Bean on the way (October)
  • Interviewed my nonprofit role model
  • Led my nonprofit to their most successful event ever
  • Elected as President of a start-up nonprofit
  • Finished several knitting projects

The Bad

  • 5 year anniversary of grandma’s death
  • Got fired
  • Super, super sick
  • Have you seen the state of politics lately?

The Ugly

  • My mom died.

So, yes, Holy Shit is about all you need to know and you instantly understand my 2018.  I’d say I broke even.

There is one silver lining to this whole nightmare: I’ve learned that I am made of freaking diamonds.  I had no idea what I could handle until this year decided I needed to handle everything, pretty much all at the same time.  That whole mom dying, super sick, event managing and getting fired thing happened in the same month, the last three in the same week.  And, yes, I struggled, but I’m still standing nonetheless.

I’d be a fool to say I did it on my own.  Hardly.  I have the most amazing friends and family that anyone could ever hope to have as a support system.  I will be forever grateful to those who held me up when I fell before the finish line.  I couldn’t ask for a better crew.

Finally, a note on 2019.  I’m not challenging you at all.  I really just want to be friends.  If you could cut me some slack next year, that would be the most amazing gift ever.

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Godspeed, America.

It might surprise some people to learn that I spent many years planning to join the army.  I would work out in my room every night before bed doing 1000 sit-ups, 1000 push-ups, 1000 jumping-jacks, and running in place for 30 minutes.  Even my plans for veterinary school tied in with my dream of becoming an officer with the Army Corps of Veterinarians.  Unfortunately, celiac disease crushed those dreams.

Now, I spend my time researching the best ways to protect the cultural heritage of the Middle East, particularly in Iraq and Syria.  I’m working towards a graduate degree in Museum Studies and Non-Profit Management.  My entire future is looking towards preventing war and working with our allies, and even our enemies, to protect our human heritage.

I consider myself to be extremely patriotic though I’m sure many Republicans would argue with me on that.  On the eve of an inauguration that threatens everything I have worked for and everything I believe in, I am afraid for my country.  I am hoping beyond hope that Trump will succeed, certainly not in fulfilling his campaign promises, but in leading America through a storm of his own creation.

At this time, I implore everyone to reach across the aisle and work together in every way.  We need each other desperately right now.  We cannot be men, women, conservatives, liberals, Christian, Jewish, or Muslim any longer.  We must go forward as humans and do what is best for humanity.

 

It’s Not This…It’s That

Prior to living in Minnesota, I lived in Saint Louis.  In the summer, a common refrain was, “it’s not the heat, it’s the humidity.”  Now that I live in the middle of this God-forsaken frozen tundra I’ve realized something:  It’s not the snow, it’s the cold.

I really dislike snow…like a lot.  It’s one of the most obnoxious things to fall out of the sky.  But then I learned it can actually be too cold to snow.  This is a terrible revelation.

It’s going to be -14*F tonight.  A month ago it was -32*F.

Fuck that.  I’ll take 14 inches of snow any day.

Chutes and Ladders

“Are you feeling better,” my coworker asks following yet another prolonged absence.
“Oh, I’m hanging in there.”

The truth is, some days I’m barely hanging in there. Today is one of those days. I am overcome with insane amounts of nausea. Which is overall better than the crazy pain I was having but at the same time it’s really more of a lateral move.

I do try to look on the bright side. I’ve gotten the anxiety that dogged me for months under control. Which means I can go out and do things I enjoy again. But I feel like I am playing the worst game of Chutes and Ladders. Just when I feel like I’ve got things semi-under control, I hit that big ass ladder, you know the one, it goes from like square 99 to square 2? Then I have to start all over again.

As much as I am struggling to do so, I’ll just flick the damn spinner again and hope I land on a tall ladder for once. And that’s why I’m here, I guess. The last time I was sick, I turned to this blog. So I’m back. I can’t promise profound revelations about living with chronic illness. In fact, these musings will be anything but profound. Mostly, it will just be me trying to keep track of the good things on the bad days and being thankful for the good days.

So here’s my Resolution for 2017: try to blog everyday. Even if it is just a few lines, I just need to be present in the good and the bad.

I Don’t Want to Be a Writer…But I Am

I don’t want to be a writer but I can’t stop writing.

That’s a lie.

I can’t stop writing in my head. I rarely write anything down. Instead, I lie awake at night until all hours of the morning while snippets of stories, true and not so true, float around in my head (this is probably the cause of my undying love of coffee).

Obviously, I do my best thinking at night but I also stumble upon some wonderful epiphanies while in the shower. I have often longed for the invention of waterproof paper to record these wonderful ideas that pop into my head while I shampoo. Alas, once my hair is rinsed and the water is turned off, the brilliance is gone never to be found again in the same way.

In my head I have chapters upon chapters, vinegette after vinegette. I have tales and truths that will never be told. In my possession I have a black notebook with 200 sheets of paper contained within. Each page is filled with half spun tales, harebrained story ideas gone awry, and memories from my childhood that did not make it to fruition on paper. Nobody will ever read the darkest parts of my soul.

One might wonder why I have two writing jobs along with my “real” job. Another mystery revolves around why I am getting a degree in English with plans to go to graduate school. A pertinent question would also include: why the heck am I taking a creative non-fiction writing class? The biggest question: why don’t I want to be a writer?

I will never be a prolific writer. Although, that idea does not seem that difficult these days. Apparently, all one needs to do is write a young adult novel involving sparkley vampires or teenagers fighting for their lives in a dystopian world. I don’t want to do that. I do want to do that. I don’t know what I want to do.

With my whole life ahead of me and the world at my fingertips I don’t know what is in store for my future. I have so many worlds in my head, so many stories yearning to be told, so many memories that are asking for a voice. Perhaps one day I will let them speak for themselves. Right now, however, I am content with keeping the voices in my head, living in quiet obscurity. I might not get a full eight hours of sleep while they are waiting, but at least I can still sleep at night knowing they are safe.