Moving Back Home

IMG_20170717_173237_059Life has been so full of hectic things going on lately. I finished summer quarter, have read tons of books, working with Thor on some new routines to go into Fall with, and having plenty of adventures with my mom before she goes back to work at the local high school.

Today I went to a wedding. The wedding was for one of Dasa’s good friends who is marrying a girl I went to high school with. Unsure of who I was going to run into and who would be attending the wedding – I started to worry about who I was going to run into there. Two of the bridesmaids were girls I went to high school with. One I was friends with, the other I was not. Who else was going to be there? I had been sweating it for a while, but the bride went through the trouble to invite us and drop an invite in our mailbox – a personal touch that really resonated with me. We had to go. This was important. My husband needed to reconnect after he “vanished” when he started working nights when we started dating and I needed to build relationships.

A couple days ago, I stopped at a local coffee stand. My husband grew up with the two women who own it and I knew I could get a good Americano there no doubt. I needed that. The barista was someone I went to high school with and interaction had always been awkward – but today, the need for espresso was greater than my feelings towards people I went to high school with. She causally asked me how I was and how my day was. I was kind in return (I always am, it’s refreshing actually) and grabbed my coffee and drove off. That felt good. Who I was no longer mattered and the fact that we were able to come to a peace felt good. I knew that I needed to come to peace with my past, my mistakes I made before I ran away to college, and move on. I moved back home, I had to confront it and just accept it. People would forgive and move on. Others may not be so quick to do so and that is fine. However, I needed to stop worrying about what others still thought of me. I need to forget the past and be myself.

When I was young, I was stupid. I was in a relationship with someone right before leaving for college and he was not doing well with that. We were having issues early on and I, stupidly, wanted to have fun for the summer. I ended up hooking up with someone I had been on and off with, my first, someone I thought I loved and it my former best friend (who eventually introduced me to her cousin who I happened to marry – she is still upset that we ended up together) told my then-boyfriend. It got on Facebook and the next thing I knew – everyone knew what happened. Good thing, I left two days later for college – moving six hours away and ready to start a different life, with a fresh start.

I have been running from the past ever since and when I moved back several months ago, I had been hiding from it. I’ve never accepted it and thought that others wouldn’t either.

However, once I felt that I needed to come to peace with my past and move forward, create a life here – back home, I felt at peace. The wedding was a blast. Everyone was kind and wonderful, we talked to many different people and built relationships (reconnected on D’s part) that will hopefully last much longer than those in high school did. Sometimes, you just have to breathe and accept that moving on is best.

The hardest part of moving on from the past is letting go the perceptions that others have of you, especially in a small town. Once it happens and you let go of that past, you are free. Everyone changes, well, for the most part.

Lists Help Me Make Sense of My World

I had a draft concerning healthy relationships and my thoughts for this week on those. However, despite the fact that I did a list the last post, I’m going to do another one. This list is basically describing how I am feeling this week – because I am not (mentally) on my game.

  1. One of my “friends” made comments that really made me feel minimized. When I told her my husband had taken last week off (his job gave him the week off) she made the comment about how it must have been nice for me to take a break from parenthood. Uh? When do I get a break? I didn’t? He worked on fixing up a truck all week? She mentioned that it must have been nice to not feel like the “only” parent. Okay, stop right there. I do not feel like the only parent – ever. My husband comes home at the end of the night and spends time with his son. I have no idea how she would get this idea since I have never mentioned anything like that to her. If we have issues with division of anything – it’s the household chores. So, I comment that I truly never feel like I am the only parent. She then responds saying that she would feel that way if she was left at home all day and that I am a better person than she is. WTF. Seriously – who the hell even says that? First, I am not home all day long – I am in class four times a week on a college campus that is thirty minutes away from my home. Then, I never feel like I am all on my own with this parenting thing. Sure, sometimes I feel like I can never get to sit down and truly do homework – but that doesn’t mean that my husband is not being a parent. The fact that she minimized my life, implying that I am home all day long really pissed me off. Like I said, it is really hard to offend me, but this was enough. This friend hardly asks, genuinely asks how my life is going or how I am. She knows nothing about my life because she does not ask – and why would I share with someone who thinks that they could give me advice if I even remotely sound like complaining? More than that, she patronizes me and makes it sound like my life is so hard and I am such a good person for it – when I am not. I am not special for doing this stuff. I am just doing what I have to do.
  2. Finishing this self-paced history class is mentally exhausting. I am finding evidence in the books and taking two drafts in order to put together a coherent essay for this massive written final. More than that, I am trying to hold onto my 4.0 in this class and for the quarter.
  3. My son has been exhibiting behavior that my mother-in-law has enabled. I know that babies scream and cry when they don’t get their way, but there is something not right with this. He is a really even tempered child and I am finding that we are having issues with his screaming when he wants his way. Have I mentioned he is not even a year yet? With that, he is getting back onto a sleep schedule after he was refusing naps and my mother-in-law (who hates screaming) will not allow him to self-soothe. She has created a monster when it comes to nap time. I love my son, but he is wearing me out lately. I need nap time. I NEED nap time.
  4. Money. Enough said.
  5. My class. The work load and the class content is excellent. I absolutely love the reading, the writing prompts, and what I’m reading in the class. However, the dynamic really makes me uncomfortable. I am not that big of a talker. I mean, when I am in a group of people I don’t know – I don’t have a lot to say. Seriously, ask my husband. However, in the classroom setting, I participate and share because how are you supposed to learn from others if you don’t say anything? In this class, I over talk and I know it, and more than that – it makes me uncomfortable. I feel so uncomfortable. There are people there with incredible perspectives that I wish would talk more, because I absolutely love what comes out of their mouths, but nonetheless – I feel like I am the only one speaking. And I don’t want to feel like this. I feel like an outsider, I leave the class feeling stressed and overthinking everything that I said. I’ve worked in small groups plenty of times before, specifically last quarter. Last quarter, my small group – we all shared ideas, thoughts, and talked equally. There was no discomfort when we worked together or collaborated. This class drives me insane and it is beginning to get to me. I love going to class and learning from the material and learning about self-writing. I read a lot of memoirs already, so it is interesting to understand these stories. I just feel as if I am not even myself. I wonder if it sounds like I try too hard (which I don’t, I just come from a background that values participation no matter how much you hate it) or wonder if I know more than everyone else, which I don’t. I can’t place my finger on it, but I absolutely cannot stand how I feel in this class. Luckily, the class is almost over. It is so bittersweet. I love the content, but damn, going to class is just exhausting for me.

I need some self-care. A day when I just take off and get done shit that needs to be done. Get some housework done, get ahead in my English class, get my self-paced final done, maybe even just take a nap – I don’t know, but I need to really feel better than I do now. I feel like I need coffee every single second of the day. I feel like I could just sleep forever (granted, it is ten at night and I have been running around constantly this week). I have a stack of books on my nightstand because I was going to work while my husband sleeps (I have to wait until he is asleep to turn on the light otherwise he won’t), but I think I am just going to say screw it and go to bed. Maybe a good night’s sleep will help me. I will go to sleep and hope that I feel better in the morning.

Little Known Facts

While to the outside world, it seems like I share enough, I don’t. I share only what I want you to see. I share just enough so then you think you know me, but instead, no one does. However, to keep it light – here are some little known facts I would normally not share (not that they’re bad, I just wouldn’t think to).

  1. IMG_20170705_175215_264
    My love for cats started young
    My husband’s nickname for me is “turbo”
  2. I used to be really terrible with money
  3. I have an incredible depth of knowledge in British history because I watch a lot of BBC/PBS documentaries.
  4. I am obsessed with The Great British Bake Off and I hate baking.
  5. My cat’s name is Loki and my son’s name is Thor – that was an accident. I thought of Loki the mischief. Thor is named after a friend of my husband’s who passed away too young.
  6. Out of every room in the house, I hate cleaning the kitchen.
  7. I love buying toys and clothes for my son. I find it more fun than shopping for myself.
  8. I actually hate Facebook, but use it for messenger. I love Instagram the most.
  9. My favorite room in the house depends on the best natural light – so in this house, it’s my bedroom.
  10. I love reading non-fiction. I find it just as good as fiction.
  11. I prefer to drink La Criox over alcohol.
  12. I hate cooking, but do because it’s cheaper and healthier.
  13. I love old movies.
  14. I do not wear underwear and have a drawer full of them.
  15. If I could sit in a comfortable chair and read a book for the ENTIRE day, I would.
  16. I am currently drooling over a “Cat Wars” t-shirt on Modcloth.
  17. I am really picky about coffee, but I have to have it. Cold brew is my favorite.
  18. My favorite gift is an Amazon gift card – I order books like crazy.
  19. I own a lot of blankets, but always find they don’t go to waste.
  20. While I have my own set of firm beliefs, it is extremely difficult to offend me.

I’ll Feel Better Tomorrow, but Not Today

I have one friend who frequently asks me how I am doing. Not just to ask in causal conversation, but truly caring about how I am doing in life.

No one really asks that question anymore. But now, I got you thinking about it right? So, how am I doing? Well, I’ll tell you.

I’m not quite okay today. There has been a lot of shit (pardon my french, but we all know that word here) going on in my head lately. Of course, the normal – single income, motherhood, college post-grad student stuff floats in my head, but lately – a lot of family shit that I prefer to ignore and not deal with is in my head. And I hate that because, I have a life. I have a life and I have enough to think about other than petty crap that deals with my family – on both my side and my husbands.

Let’s start with yesterday. Yesterday, I went to a BBQ at one of my husband’s aunt’s house. Now, this is no ordinary situation. My former best friend is my husband’s cousin and this was her house. I have not spoken to her in about a year and the last time that we were “friends” was when she was trying to butt into my husband’s business regarding his biological family about a year and a half ago – before I found out I was pregnant. However, when my husband and I started dating over two years ago – she completely cut me off. Still to this day, I get blamed. I’m not sure who believes who because the entire family gossips and lies about what everyone is doing all the time. I do know that one day, I was blocked. Why? Because I hadn’t brought over my child to her house when I lived an hour away and then started going back to college for a second bachelors? Excuse me for having a life.

So, I be the better person and I go over to her house. Everyone is all over me with Thor and I like to hold onto Thor. He is my security blanket. I can completely ignore someone or not have to talk to someone when he is on my lap. I. LOVE. IT. So, one of my husband’s cousins brings his fiancee and boy, is she stuck up. She wants to hold my baby, but refuses to speak to me and all she says is, “I can’t wait until we have one.” And all I can think is, “Yeah, bitch. Just you wait.”

So why has this all gotten to me so badly? I have been drained ever since. Part of it is because I have no idea what everyone thinks or what everyone believes. I hear that no one believes my former friend (or likes her) but who am I to believe? They talk crap about each other ALL OF THE TIME. It creates the most unstable environment ever and I mentally cannot handle it.

I know people talk bad about me. I am pretty much used to it after high school and all the crap that went around then (I was young and really stupid and made decisions where everyone was judging me but it wasn’t like everyone else was doing them – you know?) I have a really thick skin and normally – I don’t care. But I DO this time and that really bothers me that I CARE. I CARE what some stuck up little bitch thinks about me. I NEVER DO SO WHY NOW? Is it because I am vulnerable? That I don’t trust them? That she wanted to hold my son and refused to speak to me (I know that this is a good chunk of it as well)? And my former friend – we have been having ups and downs for years, but she is their family – but am I being protected from her hatefulness? And in all seriousness, she is hateful – just trust me here. I have enough stories to back this up, but that’s not relevant right now.

Despite all of that, the one thing that bothers me is – I check on a friend of mine. She was upset about something stupid regarding her fiancee’s ex-wife and I wanted to make sure that they had resolved the issue (I knew they would). And I don’t even get a “how are you lately?” THANKS. I AM JUST TRYING TO KEEP MY ANXIETY IN CHECK. But really, she doesn’t care – why bother telling her the truth even if she did ask? She would give me some annoying advice, because she thinks she is all knowing for being 22. Who knows what the actual hell is going on at 22?? I sure didn’t.

I really don’t need friends (I have come to the conclusion that my life really is better without them, despite that people say that all the time to sound emotionless – but I really don’t like people). I have enough family, my brother’s girlfriend is really awesome and I hang out with her, and my husband is my best friend – so why bother with others who will never really understand my life anyway? Friends always make life difficult. They want to do things (I don’t like doing group stuff, I get mentally exhausted) and they don’t like the same things I really enjoy doing (like reading or homework – because I secretly love being in college again). If I get lonely – I can typically get a cat to cuddle with me and I am fine…but really, I am.

However, despite that mentally I am drained and anxiety ridden today, I about had a panic attack at the grocery store. There were too many stupid people who could not figure out how to use a cart in a grocery store. I wanted THREE items and it took me too long. I was breathing heavily, trying not to cry, and focused on that back cashier where I wouldn’t have to run into anyone I know. The cashier was the nicest person and asked me how my long weekend was and was sweet to my son, and I genuinely enjoyed the interaction. After I walked out of the grocery store, I remember thinking – I needed that. I needed someone to remind me that there are good people out there. Not many, but a few.

I’m still not doing well and they’re stuck in my head – I’m thinking a slurpee and maybe talking will help. Maybe? It might not be helping that my period – I think? is here. I mean, I switched birth control to a hormonal IUD from a non-hormonal IUD so who the hell knows what’s going on with that. Regardless of these potential influences – I am just trying today. I am mentally trying to overcome my anxiety and I am pulling myself pretty well together, but I know underneath – I’m not just okay today. I’ll be better tomorrow. I’ll want to punch them both in the face less and I’ll move on past it.

 

Better Cat Mom or Human Mom?

Some days, I feel like I am a better cat mom than a human mom. Cats are easy. You leave out their food, make sure they have water refilled, clean the litter box, and and snuggle with them every now and then. A human mom is different than that, a little bit more goes into a human.

Sometimes I feel like a bad mom. Being a student and a mother are two different roles that are difficult enough on their own. However, I had two options when I became a mom. Work 50+ hours a week and put my son into daycare or go back to college for career and a cause that I am passionate about and put my loans into deferment. I opted for wanting to be involved in educating angsty American teenagers because that is important to me.

Some days, I feel overwhelmed. He wants up and down, has a full blown meltdown when I know he is tired and needs a nap, he screams if you leave him for a second, and if I am using the laptop – forget getting anything done without him standing and trying to touch the keyboard. He is a really easy baby, most of the time. He sleeps really well, he plays on his own extremely well, he can always find things to do, he is a great snuggler when he wants to be one, and he never fights a bottle when he is hungry. We manage to do a really good job together.

I do enjoy the days where my house is quiet and I do not have to tip-toe throughout the house. I like being able to focus on classwork and not worry about when he is going to wake up or getting as much done as I can before I hear his cry. I feel bad when I drop off my son for the day, I feel slight relief. I know that I can productive without feeling like I am trying to herd a bunch of cats.

20170620_165449

It is just a phase. He just wants to be held all the time, which comes from the teeth that are coming in. No one ever tells you that the first four are a piece of cake – it’s the rest that are hell.

I know that I am a really good cat mom, but I feel bad for needing a break from my son. I never think about needing a break from my cats. Then again, Loki enjoys sleeping on the bed I situated for them and Jax sleeps under the comforter on our bed most of the day. Sure, they sound like elephants when they chase each other up and down the hallway, but that is the only annoying thing they really do. The only doubting I did was when Jax was messing on the floor in the backroom and I knew that maybe I was neglecting his needs more than I should be. He is special after all. Cats are a breeze, which is probably why I like them so much.

This is just a phase with Thor. The teeth will come in, he will start to walk, and things will get easier – he will move onto the next phase, but we can work with that. The phases aren’t the aspects of motherhood that exhaust me. It is when he feels needy and needs mom all day and all night, when he screams bloody murder for a nap. Those are the moments that wear me out. But he always goes back to his usual independent self and his three hour naps twice a day. It is just getting past this little mood.

I do the best I can and that’s all I can do as a mom, right? At least I’m not a drug addict, alcoholic, or neglect my child. I mean, I could be a real bitch here. Secretly, I love being a mom. I love holding my son and watching him grow. Some days are just a little rough compared to others. That is when having a mother-in-law ten minutes away is a real benefit.

 

 

Even as a Post-Bacc, I Still Use Google for Definitions

I am currently back in college as a post-baccalaureate student. Google defines this as: “a matriculated status, reserved for students who are working toward a second bachelor’s degree or preparing for entrance to graduate or professional school.” Technically, the UW defined this, but this was what Google gave me.

It is hard for me. The work is not difficult. I enjoy being an English student because I love books and literature. However, it is hard being a post-bacc student in a class of undergrads. I was once one of them, working towards that little piece of paper that could change my life. Well, here I am, back in college. I have a Bachelor’s in Communication Studies from a top private university on the west coast. I have done several research studies on social media, studied rhetoric and persuasion, focused on intercultural communication, and have incredible public speaking skills. I have worked for two top west coast companies and have experiences that most people at 24 do not. I feel that I have lived a full life already and I have more to go.

Being in a classroom with undergrads is difficult. I already have vastly different values, goals, and experiences than those who have not graduated do. I am a mom, a wife, I have a degree, I have move away and moved back home, and I have married someone who does not have a college education, but someone I respect deeply regardless. When I was in their situations, I would have never guessed my life to turn out the way it did and I am glad it did – otherwise I would probably have more issues than I do.

I have a hard time connecting with others. I connect with a few people and that is all. So, not only do I have a hard time connecting with others already, but it becomes more difficult because of how differently my life is than to my peers. They are not able to identify with my anxieties of being a parent, a wife, a cat mom, and a student who already has a degree. That’s fine, I do not need someone to be able to identify with me. I do not need someone to be my friend. However, it kills me that I have pushed myself to interact with others in a classroom setting (because my professors from my alma mater made me for a solid participating grade) and the effort is not reciprocated. I don’t want to talk to them. I don’t want to tell them what I think because I know they won’t have anything to say back. I do not want to participate. I want to read books and write papers. However, I do it anyway because I know it is important to the education process. I have learned so much from class discussions to know they are important. If I am making the effort and it makes me want to stab my eyes out – the least they can do is help me out here.

I am not there to make friends. I am not there to tell them how to think. I am there because I want an A, but also participation means perspective and when someone gives you a perspective that you haven’t thought about – your life can change. When a simple belief you have can be questioned and can be argued by someone else – they are giving you a different way of thinking about the idea that you have not thought about before. Maybe you really start to second guess what you believed or maybe you disagree – but that is important. It is important to question everything otherwise we believe what we are told to believe.

Wow, that went differently than I expected that thought to, but it is true. Maybe it is because of my life experiences that I am open minded to all possibilities. I would rather hear someone disagree with me and be able to fight for what I believe than be fed something not know why I believe what I believe.

Anyway, I should probably finish that last history paper. Financial aid thinks that I am credit deficient because I am in a self-paced class. Assholes.

A Comeback. Kind of.

I meant to blog about being a mom, wife, and whatever else I wanted to write about months ago, but I decided to be busy and not have time. I guess. Currently, I am taking a course discussing self-writing and reading memoirs and autobiographies. So, the book we are reading has inspired me to blog again and blog about my life as it happens. So, here are some things on my mind currently…

  1. I am pretty sure my three year old male cat has mental illness. He hates people he doesn’t know, hides under the bed, sometimes can only deal with three head rubs exactly, and is not as smart as normal cats. Apparently, talking calmly, cleaning his litter box out twice a day, and feeding him on time helps.
  2. Being a post-grad student in a class of undergrads is super difficult. Values, goals, and perspectives are different. They will never understand you, but you totally know what point in life they are at.
  3. My husband is super offensive, but I kind of like it. How fun would it be to have someone who agrees with you all the time?
  4. I am very tempted to wake up my husband to clean the pot of oil from when he made french fries, but I know I could possibly die if I wake him up right now.
Jax
Jax, my “special” cat.

 

 

While reading Jenny Lawson’s, Furiously Happy, I realized that I should just write about my life. I should write about the odd conversations my husband and I have, my uncanny ability to procrastinate, the values I want my son to grow up having, the fact that my pelvic ultrasound found a mass on my liver and I am overthinking it to the “n”th degree, and that marriage is hardest relationship you will have with another human being ever.

So, I’ll start blogging more. I hope.