lost.

This summer I’ve been barely working. I’ve been working my tutoring job but I get these weird two to four hour shifts in the afternoon and have to spend my whole day planning around them. I feel so stressed out on the days I have to work since I spend the whole day just waiting for work to start. Yesterday was my last day there, and I’ll miss the kids, but I won’t miss working in the evenings when I could be enjoying time with people or cooking a healthy dinner.

In good news, I finally got a teaching job. But it doesn’t start until Tuesday. So I’ve been patiently waiting, requesting every single teaching book I can from the library that somehow I hope will miraculously help me as a first-year teacher. I’ve been waiting and wanting this job since I can remember. I don’t think it feels real yet, I think that’s the problem.

I’ve been listening to all these podcasts and trying to find self-help books that help me continue to heal but I just feel terribly lost.

I don’t know if I’ll be a good teacher. I think I’m still scarred from how horrible some of the parts of my grad program were. How horribly some teachers treated me when I was a student teacher.

I’m scarred from how some of the teachers at work treated me this year as a para, and I’m vowing not to do that to ANY of the paras I work with throughout my career. I will tell paras directly what I want them to do or change. I will invite them to baby showers or other social events because they are people too! And let’s face it, schools cannot get by without paras. I think all teachers should be required to be a para before they get their own classroom, then they will have a unique perspective of the elementary/middle/high school experience that they might not have otherwise had.

I’m still seeing tinder boy. Not sure if he’s my boyfriend. I think that’s another reason why I feel lost. Why do I feel like I need a label? I’m still so screwed up from my past relationships that I often have nightmares.

I realized this week that I don’t randomly break out into song anymore. I’ve lost my music. I used to obsessively sing and write down song lyrics so I wouldn’t lose them.

I don’t do that anymore. Maybe I’m not as okay as I thought.

I do feel blessed that someone had enough faith in me to finally hire me as a teacher. I’m still getting daily rejection emails from all the schools I applied to over the past 6 months.

Maybe there’s so much change all at once that I’m shutting down? I can’t wait to get my first paycheck and shove as much of it as I can into my savings account.

I know I’ll have to rely deeply on this blog as I begin my first year as a classroom teacher. Hopefully once I meet my students I won’t feel so lost anymore.

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Dilemma.

****

This year has been another really difficult year for me. I don’t think anything will ever top how terrible 2017 was, so I am optimistic that 2018 is most likely only going to get better. I’m taking it day by day, trying to work on myself as I go. And sometimes when I have the impulse to write, I have to go with it. Otherwise, the inspiration gets lost and the writing never makes it onto paper.

In February, I found a local yoga studio and decided that I would try to go there. During my February vacation, I did the unlimited discounted 30 day trial and it was amazing and I found myself going to yoga a lot. When my regular routine started back up again, with working the 2 jobs, a 12-hour workday, and a 14+ hour day that I was out of the house, I found myself not being able to find the time to go to yoga. I thrive on routine and I was just not able to find a regular yoga class that would fit in with my crappy schedule. I guess I could have tried harder, but I’ve already beat myself up enough about it, so I’m just going to try and move forward.

I went for a few months before I met the owner of the yoga studio. She was taking over the restorative yoga class that I had been to a few times because the usual yoga teacher couldn’t be there. I had heard so many amazing things about this woman. She was moving to New Zealand soon and had made the decision to sell her studio to someone else. She trained many of the amazing yoga teachers that I had taken classes.

I try to be really nice to people, and I try not to judge as best as I can, but this woman was a complete let down. I introduced myself and she asked me what I was hoping to gain from yoga class tonight. I then told her about all of the painful things (in a brief summary) that had been dragging me down lately. And then I told her how the worst of all was that I couldn’t afford to move out of my parents’ basement and that was the most draining out of all of it. Instead of being kind to me, she told me that I needed to stop making excuses and that there’s always a way and that she had always lived on her own and didn’t have any family to rely on.

I know I make excuses sometimes, but when your student loans are $700 a month and your paycheck is $700 every two weeks, it’s not an excuse, it’s basic math. Because there simply wasn’t a way for me to pay rent and my student loans on such a tiny salary. It wasn’t possible and I was struggling with the feeling of being stuck. I was feeling totally lost and hopeless and this woman crushed me.

Anyways, I have thought about this encounter on and off for months! I can’t get it out of my head. Because I know how many millennials are struggling nowadays. Yes there are some millennials who do those dumb internet challenges and drink their brains away, but there are some of us (like myself) who are trying to better themselves despite all of the horrific challenges and tragedies they have to face.

Did you know the birthrate is at such a low point in the United States that it’s not enough to keep the current population rates? When my parents were 29, they were married and working on buying their first home and were pregnant with me. I am 29 and the possibility of buying a home is impossible at this point. I have decent credit but no way to pay for a mortgage, let alone provide the down payment that realtors will need in order to sell me a house. There’s no possible way I can even think about having kids, even if I did have a husband. We’d both have to work since the cost of living is so expensive. We’d never see each other because we’d be constantly working or stressing ourselves out with the duties that come with owning a home.

So yeah, yoga lady, you might have been able to do it all by yourself 20 years ago, but some of us really don’t have that luxury. There is an entire generation of us who struggle to meet the basic financial necessities to be a human. (And yes, I know many of my peers who are doing quite well, but the majority of us aren’t, compared to what past generations were doing). 30 years ago, there could be one breadwinner for the entire family and everyone would be comfortable. People would work together and support one another, but they could also get by without support. Now, if you’re in a helping profession, like teaching, you have to rely on a spouse or family members in order to make ends meet.

So let me ask her this, how on earth was I supposed to live alone and support myself making $1400 a month when the average cost of a one bedroom apartment in the Boston area is approximately $1800?

The numbers really don’t add up here. This is a huge dilemma that I struggle with daily. How can I be happy if I can’t even pay all of my bills on my own?

****

Kindness.

Random Ramblings’ 10 Acts of Kindness
(To Pass On Good Karma)

***

It seems like basic manners are gone from the world these days. You can be a good citizen and human being and pass on the good karma with these simple acts.

1. Hold the door for the person behind you.

2. When you’re driving, stop for pedestrians if it’s safe to do so. (And pedestrians, please use the cross walk if it’s close by!)

3. Don’t agree to something if you’re not actually going to do it.

4. Give compliments whenever and wherever possible.

5. Start a chat with a new or temporary person at work. (I always try to connect with subs at my school job!)

6. Let that person who’s in front of you waiting make that left turn.

7. Don’t tailgate people who are already speeding. Especially at night. It’s really hard to see!

8. Go out of your way to offer help. Carry the box. Write that email. Support people!

9. If your roommate/spouse doesn’t like a specific chore, secretly do it for them!

10. Give the person/friend you’re with that $1 bill if they are short.

***

Update.

I have barely had time for anything lately, especially writing! I basically just work and work and work since I have two jobs. Now that I have weekends off I have been trying to keep myself busy and distracted and it usually is working… It leaves me little time to get emotional but also has not really given me much time to get back to writing…

On Sunday I turned 29! I literally can’t believe that I am in my last year of my twenties, especially because I practically still look like a 12 year old. I guess somewhere down the road I will appreciate my younger-looking face. A few weeks ago I was at a bowling alley and ordered a drink. The waitress asked me for collateral since the rule is you need it if you are 25 or younger. I told her like 6 times “I don’t need collateral”, but I’m not sure if she even heard me or believed me. And then when she IDed me, she was like “oh wow you don’t need collateral, why didn’t you say anything?” *face palm*

On my birthday, which was overall a decent day, my ex decided that he needed to text me “hey.. happy birthday”. That sent me off on a rampage and has not left me feeling so great this week. Which is horrible since I am on vacation this week. I spent Sunday night tossing and turning and woke up Monday morning feeling like I hadn’t made any progress. My heart felt like it was broken all over again.

But then tinder guy came to the rescue! So far we have been on 3 dates, and all 3 times my IBS has been horrific… I’ve done my best to hide it from him, but I just get so nervous that I’m super uncomfortable. He has been super nice. This week, he is away in DC for work, but when I told him I was in a bad mood, he FaceTimed me all the way from DC. It made me feel a lot better even though he didn’t even know what was wrong. He keeps saying he wants to make me smile because he loves my smile. I don’t know if he’s full of shit or literally actually likes me. I don’t want to say anything to my parents either, what if I jinx it?!

It seems too good to be true. Trying not to mess it up like I usually do.

I have applied for 20 teaching jobs this week, just trying my best to be optimistic! I would literally cry with happiness every day if someone took a chance on me and gave me my own classroom. I would have so much work to do over the summer, but having my dream job would make it all worth it!

tinder.

Oh man oh man.

I’ve caved into something that I always hated the idea of: online dating. It is a world that promotes hook-ups and all of the things that I think are wrong about society.

However, it has promoted a little bit of hope for me this week. Many of the guys I chat with on tinder disappear randomly or say inappropriate things (and then I disappear). I’ve tried coffee meets bagel, but I find the time limits and how it costs “beans” to like guys very annoying and tedious. (I’m just trying to find cute guys to talk to, it should be free for me to at least talk to them.)

Anyways, I caved this week. I told a guy that I wanted to get to know him more before we actually met and he kept talking to me. And he seemed relatively normal. And it so happens, we figured out, that we live in the same time. So, I caved. He asked me out again, and I said yes.

Because, at the rate I’ve been going lately, why not. I didn’t think that it could make me feel any worse than I’ve been feeling lately. I told few friends where I would be to relieve the creepy stalker factor out of my brain a little bit. It alleviated some of the stress for me, but not all of it.

Let me just say that I am an extremely awkward person by nature, so the whole idea of meeting some stranger for sushi that I met on tinder, was actually quite hilarious to me. I couldn’t believe that I was actually doing this. I couldn’t even handle it.

I don’t know if you know anything about the combination of IBS and high anxiety, but let’s just say the two can be deadly. On the way, I was frustrated that I wasn’t late because I needed more time to mentally prepare. (Damn you, waze!) I would have gotten there right on time but I was actually panicking. I had to find the nearest bathroom to avoid a really embarrassing situation.

Then I drove to the restaurant, since he texted me that he was already waiting for me there. I pulled over across the street from the restaurant, and then realized I had found it. Then I realized there was no way for me to cross the street safely, so I drove up the street and turned around. Then I pulled over next to the restaurant, but still parked on the street. Then I got a “hey is that your car, you can park in the lot, you know?” text. Oops….

Anyways, then we sat and talked for FOUR HOURS. I didn’t realize that it was four hours until he told me yesterday that we had sat and talked for four hours. I was shaking for at least the first hour. I had to go to the bathroom again abut halfway through. I was very fidgety, but we still talked for four hours. I couldn’t believe it was that long. We have a lot in common, and a lot not in common, so plenty to talk about. And he rescues dogs. And owns his own place. On paper, he looks pretty great. But of course, my last ex looked excellent on paper, and look where that got me. So I am extremely cautious.

Unfortunately, he’s going out of town for two weeks to go see his family. I hope he doesn’t forget about me. I definitely wouldn’t like it if he doesn’t text me at all while he’s away…

He’s made several comments about our next dinner or me going hiking with him and his dogs, so we will see what happens.

Mostly, I am proud of myself. I did something that was incredibly hard. INCREDIBLY hard, but it turned out okay. I think things will eventually be okay. I don’t know if I’ll ever completely get rid of my anxiety about being completely abandoned, but I am going to try and work at it every day.

They say the best kind of karma is to be happy and live your life, so that’s what I am going to try and do, even when I’m sad, even when I feel like no one is ever going to love me again. All I can do is try and send out my own positive qi into the world and hope that karma has my back as I do it.

shit.

I feel like total and absolute shit today. I think I’m getting sick, so physically, I’m not doing that great.

Mentally, I’m freaking wiped out.

I’m tired of missing you day after day. It doesn’t do me any good. It holds me back and makes me sad. I want you out of my brain, and out of my heart.

I have these arguments with myself. Maybe he’s waiting to hear from you, too. Maybe he misses you, too. Maybe he realizes he’s made a mistake but is too scared to say anything.

Then where is he? I tell myself that I’m wrong. That no one would say they wanted to be friends and then not act like a friend. That no one would tell someone “at the very least we need to take a break” and then decide “I don’t want a relationship at all”.

I argue with myself that there’s no reason why you’d stay with me for a whole year if you didn’t actually want to be with me. Maybe you’re just too stressed out. Maybe we both made mistakes and are pushing each other away, wrongly.

I don’t understand my brain, or my heart. They argue with each other. I won’t think about you for a while and then BAM you’re there full force and I can’t stop missing my best friend.

Then it feels like it was all in my head because you’re the one who broke up with me and told me that WE DIDN’T FEEL THE SAME WAY. But it was okay for you to stay with me for a year and PRETEND THAT YOU CARED.

So then, I argue, why would anyone pretend that for a whole year. What kind of person does that?

So then, I think how you probably are a good person and probably did want to be with me, or still do, or whatever.

I’m a mess. I’ve never missed someone so much in my entire life.

joy.

They tell you that “time will tell” and that the only solution to your pain will be “time”. I call bullshit. I can’t get behind the fact that plenty of time has passed and you are still on my mind more than I’d like.

Every once in a while, someone comes into your life, and gets to your heart and makes you feel things that you didn’t think you were capable of feeling. They make you feel like you’re finally not going to die alone. They make you feel that all those years of waiting, being single, and feeling like there was something wrong with you are finally over.

And then they leave. They’ve made the decision without you and there’s nothing you can do to change their mind. You fight more than you’ve ever fought before, and why? Because once you finally have it, you can’t seem to let it go. And everyone tells you it’s going to be okay. But it never will be okay.

There will never be anything okay about you pretending to want me for a year. There is no answer that will make it okay. There is no way of knowing if you were just pretending or you really don’t want to be with anyone, or if it’s just me. There’s no way of knowing why you’d just give up on something when less than a month before you said “all that matters that we are together on my birthday” when I asked you what you wanted to do. I have the proof. I save the text message because I thought it was adorable.

Adorable, my ass. If you didn’t want to be with me, then why did you spend a year with me AND THEN tell me “I don’t want a relationship”. What is that? It’s not like we are teenagers. It’s not like we have forever. We are adults. You are thirty. You are supposed to be a grown ass man.

All I feel now is shame. Shame for letting you into my heart and soul. Shame for wasting a year with someone who I am not sure if ever cared about me. As time goes by, I still don’t have the answers. All I have is my broken heart and many more unanswered questions.

They lied. You especially lied. Time does not do shit. Time is as cold as ice, ripping into you, until you are so tired of arguing with yourself and imagining imaginary conversations that you feel like you are blue in the face. Time doesn’t do anything, other than make you feel even more alone.

And then someone tells you that finding joy will make you feel better.

How can you find joy if you are devastated? How can you find joy if time has never been on your side? How do you find joy if you take a personality quiz and find that you are 95% anxiety? How can you ever expect to get better if someone who “cares” about you doesn’t think twice about completely destroying you?

Time. I feel exactly the same as I did when you broke my heart.

21.

It has been 21 excruciating days since you smashed my soul into a billion tiny little pieces. You did this without thinking about the consequences, without planning for the future, because you thought it was the right decision, right now.

21 days where I have been so lost that I don’t even want to get out of bed in the morning, but I do it because I have to. 21 beyond painful days where I have had to pretend that everything was fine at thanksgiving, because it’s not.

What is that saying, you don’t destroy the people who you love. You say that you don’t love me, which is a lie, and we both know it is. You lie and say you’ll work on things, but you don’t.

You don’t work on things until you’ve told me ‘you never say never’ but you’re now getting the help that I asked you to get 2+ months ago. And you’re doing it at my expense. Because you destroyed me. And you’ve given me what feels like false hope, but I care for you so much I am hanging on to the tiny little piece where this could truly be that break you talked about; or it could truly be that one exception to the never-rule.

What did I do deserve this pain? I waited for nearly 6 years, minding my own business, and then you came along and made me think that all my waiting had been worth it. Yes, our relationship wasn’t perfect, but no one’s is. Anyone who says otherwise is a liar.

That’s why I’m so frustrated and tried so hard to fix this an explain to you that it isn’t black and white, but it is also not time to just simply give up. You’re clearly depressed. Hell, I’m depressed, after this shit hole of a year, it’s so hard not to be. And one thing that was getting me through this was the prospect of it all getting better, and that you’d be by my side when that all came true.

I’ve had enough heartache to last a life time. I’m exhausted. I’m tired of being the only single one at family functions and weddings, and even just at the supermarket. I’m tired of thinking of you minute after minute, wondering what you are doing. I want to tell you about all the things that have happened in the past 21 days.

For example, one day, I realized one of the cats had shit in my bed. I don’t know when it happened and it was such a tiny amount of shit, but I freaked out and was stripping my entire bed and myself down after 10 pm at night when I had tried so hard to actually go to bed for once.

Tonight we went out to dinner for my dad’s 60th birthday, and you missed it. We went to that restaurant we went to with my family that one time, I think it was for my birthday or maybe my brother’s birthday? I don’t even remember. I bet you’d remember, but I can even ask you.

I lost my apartment that I was so excited about, which is probably better since it was 5 minutes away from where you live.

And next week, my mom is having a heart procedure called a cardiac ablation. Basically they go up through her groin and shock parts of her heart to try and get it back into a regular rhythm. I’m afraid I could lose my mom, which is probably highly illogical, but you know, since I suffer from anxiety, logic has never really truly been my thing.

21 days and you still can’t give me an answer if this is permanent or not. 21 days that my soul has suffered and I have tortured myself to not talk to you. I’ve caved 3 times. We used to talk every single day, except when I was being a dick and I was mad at you. I wish that this was just a really horrible dream and I could just wake up already.

But reality is one cold hearted bitch.

2017.

I don’t even know where to start. The past year has been one of the loneliest, cruelest years that I can remember. They tell you grad school will be difficult, but they don’t tell you exactly how. With no financial aid, whatsoever, I made it. I have to take one more licensure exam that I missed by 3 points… But I’m nearly there, and after all that, I might not have a teaching job to help pay all of my bills this fall. I might have to settle for a teaching assistant job since the state has not finished processing my paperwork… even though it was sent in June.

Spring 2017 was an extremely rough semester for me. I didn’t think anything could top this Fall where I took 19 credits and worked 4 days a week. But my first student teaching placement was horrible. I have never been in an environment where my anxiety was so provoked (except maybe the doctor’s office). I cried more in those first few months than I have cried in the past 5 years. As someone who really doesn’t cry often, this was incredibly terrible. I eventually moved to a new placement, but it cost me all the hard work I had already put in, and starting over from scratch.

On June 12th, I began my takeover week at my new placement. It was a much better fit and I left feeling successful after that first day. The next morning, I continued my takeover week and was having a great day. At one point, I felt the need to check my phone for some reason. My mother had left a voicemail. In the transcription I read the words “grandmother. important. call me back.”

On June 13th around 7 am I lost the most influential person in my life. My 90-year-old grandmother lost her long fight to congenital heart failure.

I don’t even have the words to describe how I am feeling. All I know is that it just doesn’t feel real and that I am completely lost. I’m glad she didn’t suffer for very long (she fell and broke her pelvis not even a month before she passed). I feel guilty that I didn’t spend more time with her this past year since I was so consumed by grad school. I’m glad my cats were here to keep her company, but I could have done more.

I didn’t do enough.

Frozen.

Have you ever experienced that feeling where the person you are working with/for thinks that you are going to fail, so naturally you completely mess up? That feeling where you are completely lost, losing all memory of what it was you were supposed to be doing. That’s what my student teaching experience has been like. The teacher I was placed with completely immobilizes me, and the people who could make a difference, truly do not understand. It even feels like they might not even care…

I didn’t come to graduate school to be told I should start thinking about other options. I didn’t come to graduate school to be told that I should get my Masters and not my teaching licensure. I came here after years of thinking about this decision and I finally went for it.

First, it was the financial burden. No one tells you that you can get loans to cover your summer credits at my school. No one even offered a scholarship or any other sort of payment plan or additional funding. No one paid any attention to the fact that I would be supporting myself. So I paid them. I paid them the over $7,000 for my summer courses. I paid them the additional $3,0000 in the fall when for some reason my financial aid kept being split up between the fall and the spring and I still owed and had to pay late fees. I paid. I did my part.

Now why is this university completely failing me? They have taken all of my money. They have taken my sanity, because the money that I paid them OUT OF POCKET for my tuition were supposed to be my living funds for the year I was in grad school. I got a job. I’ve worked my ass off despite being completely broke and my school not helping me financially whatsoever. I operated on 5 or less hours of sleep for months.

And now I’m the one who doesn’t get to finish up my student teaching placement this week. I was penalized because my advisor put me with someone that wasn’t a good fit, and didn’t feel right even a few weeks in. But no one listened to me when I asked for help. They waited until it was too late and then offered me a placement that will meet for my summer semester.

Now I am terrified that choosing this profession was all a big mistake, even though it wasn’t. Now I’m terrified that if I don’t make it through this second placement I will be jobless and $50,000+ in debt to a university that couldn’t even do the one job I paid it to do: Get me my licensure.

I know no one is perfect, and I know that everyone has flaws. But when does this end? This was supposed to be my way out of the monotony that was dragging me down in my previous life. This was supposed to mobilize me into my career.

I have about 6 weeks to pass this student teaching. SIX WEEKS. At this point, I don’t care if I get a classroom teaching position in the fall. I’ll sub, I’ll be a teaching assistant again, I’ll keep working in retail.

All I want is to graduate and get my teaching licensure. I could sure use a miracle at this point.