Monday, July 7, 2014

the good in goodbye

Well, I've told my friends, my family, my parents, and now my boss, so I guess the cat is out of the bag.

I'm moving!
To Sydney! :D

(c) Joel Westworth

I leave on September 1st, and I'll probably be there for... I'm not sure! That's all up to the Australian government, frankly. But hopefully, I'll be there for a few years.

Wow. Sept. 1st. 8 weeks. SO SOON!

I've been wanting to spill this on the blog for a long time now, but I was too afraid of work finding out and firing me. That old chestnut. But, after a lot of discussion and analyzing our options, Joel and I realized that me moving to Sydney is the best/easiest way for us to actually be together.

Yes, there have been a TON of feelings happening as a result of this decision. This is HUGE. GINORMOUS. I have never been more excited for anything in my life, for real real. And neither has Joel. Knowing that I'm mere weeks away from starting my life with the love of my life has set me spinning. We've been apart for all but 2 months since the day we met, but still, it's been the best year of my life. And thinking about continuing that, to live with someone who is excited to build a home with me, a life with me, someone's who is continuously on the same page as me--it makes my heart explode. For the first time, I can see my future. And it looks goddamn incredible.

So yeah. It's basically a whirlwind of excitement and feels over here. Except for, maybe my mom, who just lately can say "Australia" without crying. (I know she loves me. She'll get there. ) I am going to miss my friends and my family, more than I can possibly fathom, but things like WhatsApp, Skype, Facebook, and plane tickets will make missing people easier. 

There's a lot to do before then, and a lot that's going to happen, like packing, taking a trip to Savannah, GA, the birth of Mary's baby and Leah's baby, a visit from Cara and my big ass going away/30th birthday party (oh dear God, I'm turning 30), and lots of other things to cover before I say goodbye.

But, there's a really important good bye to have, and that's to Camp Audrey Kosher. I've discussed it before, but I feel like I've grown apart from this blog. I'm in such different place now than I was when I started, that I just don't feel like it's fair to keep blogging here. I know that sounds douchey as all told, but it's the truth. Yeah, I'm sad in that "Audrey clings nostalgically to inanimate objects" way, because it's always a bit of a bummer when I close out a journal. Or in this case, a blog. I can't think of deleting this corner, because it holds a lot of history, but the updates that have been trickling through with the force of a soggy earthworm will probably just... stop. And that's ok. This blog is a part of me, but there's so much more to tell now. It's just time to move on.

Farewell, sweet AudgePodge. It has been quite a ride. You'll always have a place in my heart.

I'll see everyone on the other side! Thank you, everyone for supporting me while I was here! Come follow me at my new home, AudWrites, and we can be friends forever.


Wednesday, July 2, 2014

No Air Conditioning (and other life threatening problems)

I've been driving for the past month with little to no Air Conditioning in my car. It's not because I'm proving a point to live eco-friendly (I mean, I recycle, sometimes, but I don't go crazy), or driving a classic car (unless 2003 re-tooled Ford Focus are becoming relics). It's because June was a no-good-very-bad-awful month for my wallet.

It all started on May 28th, when I was having my windshield replaced ($374). I noticed that my license plates expired on June 1. And so did my safety inspection. Well, shit. I checked online, and sure enough, I was also due for an Emissions test, which needed to be passed before I could renew. Double shit. Renewing my registration on Emission Inspection years is historically an awful, expensive, and soul crushing experience for me, as my car has only passed on the first time once in the 8 years that I've owned it.

As I drove to the Emissions site the next day, my A/C started pushing hot air. It was 90* outside. Triple shit. After waiting in the line for 30 minutes in the blistering sun, it dawned on me that my car's check engine light was AGAIN. That means your car won't pass Emssions. Quad shit. So I cut my losses and just dropped it off with the techs. "Find out why the A/C isn't pushing cold air, and what I need to do pass Emissions.

2 days later, I get a call from the shop. After a laundry list of woes and ails, I get the final estimate: $1,100 to bring my car up to tip top shape. All the shit. All the shit, ever. I cleaned up the explosion from my surprised butt hole and negotiated (i.e. started crying because I can't afford $1,100) to $650 to get the A/C running and have the car passable for inspections. But I still have to drive it for a week before they can run the Emission test. Whatever.

The next day, I get pulled over for having expired tags. Luckily, the officer was understanding as I showed him my "Failed Emissions" report, and let me go.

6 days later, the check engine light comes on again. It's the oil sender that I didn't have fixed. $117. I have to drive for another week. I am 3 weeks overdue, and am frantically dodging cops.

5 days later, I pass emissions.

The next day, my A/C stops working again. "Oh, it must be a leak. See, we said on your invoice here that it might need to come back in 2 weeks if the system starts pumping hot air again. And it's been two weeks." I drop the car off, again.

8 hours later, get a call saying there is a leak in the A/C compressor, and it needs replacing. $360. At this point, I drop my basket. I can't afford $360. I really couldn't afford the almost $800 I'd spent so far. I'd just have to make do without A/C. In the summer. In swamp-land Virginia [shock!gasp!] My inner First World Problem air raid sirens were running at full blast, the same way the bellowed when I found out Odie's apartment in Sydney didn't have A/C. I mean, How can you live? How can you live with out air conditioning?!

As I drove home with the windows down and music blaring, and a cool breeze flowing through the car, I thought, "Hey, this might whole not having A/C in my car might not be so bad. In fact, this, right here, is down right pleasant." And for the first couple drives, it was nice. The weather was mild and I enjoyed it.

But then, Virginia remembered that it's Virginia, and quickly came back with 90*+ temperatures with $100% humidity. Since Sunday, I've needed a shower after anything more than a 15 minute drive. I've sweat through clothes faster than I ever thought I could before. My left arm is two shades darker than my right, which is shocking because I'm so pale I'm basically transparent. It's at the point now (yes, after less than a week) where I think I might literally die in my car if I get caught in stop n go traffic.

So while there are some potentially fatal drawbacks to not having A/C in the summer in a state like Virginia, I have discovered some benefits:

  • you really find out which clothes are purely ornamental, and which will help you survive. That polyester fit n flare dress with the pattern you just died over? yeah, it's a heat magnet and will sear itself to your skin. Dark wash denim skinny jeans? more like shrink to your legs while taking in ALL THE HEAT EVER jeans. Low top "summer" boots? Fuck that. Loose cotton tops, flip flops and sweat pants cut into shorts forever, ladies. I've culled 17 outfits in my mind already.
  • the idea of getting into your car between 10 AM and 8 PM is so gut twistingly undesirable that you lose the idea of getting food to go, or stopping into that random store, or even running the mildest of errands. Saving money you can't spend! 
  • no one wants you to drive because your car smells like a foot, and will melt their skin. Woo, fewer things to do!
  • getting disgustingly sweaty with every drive means I've showered everyday for the first time in months. Woo, breaking dat Hobo Lyfe.
  • saving money on gas, since the A/C isn't drinking it faster than I drink Diet Ginger Ale. Oh, why is that soda so embarrassing? And yet, so good?
  • with highway speeds + rolled down windows, I can't hear my Netflix through the phone. Saving data!
  • since I can't hear my Netflix, and I haven't replaced my iPod, I've dug out my old CDs. Nostalgia!
  • the look on that dude's face when I rolled up next to him in my uber professional gear, sweaty like a heart attack victim, windows rolled down, and Staind's Mud Shovel blaring out. (did I mention old music nostalgia?

Oh, and then on Sunday morning, my car got towed because I was too tired to run down and put my parking pass in, and thought (damn, lazy optimism) that patrols wouldn't start until the afternoon. $185.

How did I get to be an adult again? 

Tune in next time, when I learn to do things ahead of time so it doesn't end up costing me thousands of dollars. 


Monday, June 16, 2014

Mary's Having a Baby!

In my quest to be the laziest blogger ever, I've taken extreme care to only mention once that my sister is pregnant with her first wee Hartbarger creature. And now that she's about 4 weeks from poppin' the ol' uterine sac (yeah!), I think it's time I mention this event in somewhat bigger detail.

The great with child Mary on Mother's Day

When Mary and Lance announced at Thanksgiving that they were expecting, I was shocked. Mostly because I'm still in high school and my initial reaction when anyone tells me they're pregnant is OMG WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO? And then I reign myself back in and remind myself that the person talking to me is married, in their 30's and has a job. I didn't know they were trying to have kids, as they had just celebrated their first anniversary with a delayed honeymoon (hey, honeymoon baby!), and were still navigating early marriage. But, after a few seconds of "you're what?!", I realized my sister is having a baby, and I got so happy that I cried at the table.

I'm really over the moon excited to meet my new little nephew. Credit it to the great Biological Clock Thaw of 2013, or my frothing uterus (another great image!), but I can't get enough of the baby stuff. I feel bad now, thinking back to when my brother Shayne and his wife were having Grey and Neve, or when Cara and my other friends were having their babies, because I was extra baby-phobic and extra wrapped up in my own shit. I was more of the "let me know when they're born and if you need someone to come clean your house for you" type. I could gush over pictures on Facebook, and watch Grey and Neve for little bits of time, but other than that, I couldn't handle kids and babies and new mom hysteria.

But, things are different now. I Google baby clothes and accessories. I talk parenting strategies with my parent friends. I had jittery Christmas morning feelings on the day I woke up to help Mary set up her nursery. I get all sappy thinking of visiting and just hanging out with newborn Henry. I'm thinking about babies non-stop, and it's only a little frightening. But not as frightening as breast pumps. What the hell.

"This hands free milking bra gives me so much more time to Pintrest
all things I'll force my nanny staff to make for me." or "Hi, I'm a stock
model and this world doesn't exist."

My feelings about pregnancy are different this time, because this time, it's Mary. This is my big sis, who's always been a mom to me: feeding me, giving me money, buying me perfect presents, giving me the shirt off her back, etc. And now that she's going to be an actual mommy, it reduces me to a pile of happy-nostalgic-spongey like feelings. I'm so excited for her, and for Lance, and for all whirlwind of change that's coming their way.

Also, you know. I'm really excited to hold a newborn again.

So stay tuned for more baby-centric-new nephew updates!

#babyfever #ohno #birthcontrol #hashtag

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Live Blog: Oprah's 20 Questions Every Woman Should Answer

I get Oprah. She knows her audience and she works her ass off to try to be a good person. I don't think that woman has slept since 1976. Journalist, writer, producer, philanthropist, actress, media mogul with a Midas touch (except for that whole Million Little Pieces thing). How does she have time to sleep and wear sweat pants like the rest of us mortals? So I'm not a fan or anything, I but I respect her efforts.

My mom subscribes to O: The Oprah Magazine, and occasionally I'll skim through them when I'm in the bathroom when I forget my phone and there aren't any gossip rags around (yes, I'm talking about pooping). A lot of the time there's catchy headline articles about "seemingly easy and deceptively expensive ways to organize your life", "how these random women escaped death from rapists", "interviews with powerful women who aren't relevant to your demographic", "books you'll never read but can say you did to impress people", "decorating on Oprah's budget", "modern conveniences that are giving you cancer", and "Yet again another Charity that I founded." With that said, she's funny, and once you get past the Oprahness of it all, it's a good "women's" magazine. Not as sad old woman as Redbook, and not as too rich and unattainable woman than Martha Stewart Living.

So, when I was cleaning up a few weeks ago and found this issue of O, I was intrigued. 

To be honest, I was first intrigued because I really like that outfit.
Even the chevron shoes. WHAT HAVE I BECOME.

I snatched it up and almost started reading. I mean, maybe these 20 questions will help me un-lock my inner Oprah. Maybe these 20 questions will help me raise my Ambition urges to that of my Procrastination urges. Maybe these 20 questions will answer everything that I haven't already figured out about my life. Maybe these 20 questions will explain why I let my laundry build up for months at a time. After all, Oprah approved these questions. I bet she's answered them. And she's changing lives. I can change lives. I can unlock my inner Oprah. I am Oprah.

I say almost started reading, because I thought wait--it'd be more fun to blog my answers to these questions. So, now I'm sitting down with the mag. And I'll be interviewed by Oprah. In one sitting. With no taking a few days to think about it. Honesty with Oprah. So here goes! It's Saturday night. I have a plate of Oreos, trash TV, and I'm "live blogging" the Oprah questions. LET'S GET IT STARTED IN HERE.


10:48 PM: oreo #1

10:49 PM: Question 1
1. Do I examine my life enough?
Yes. I'm in therapy once a week. I want to know why I make decisions the way I do, so I can avoid making them over and over again, like I have in my past. I want to be a better person. So yeah. Examining my life is a full time job. 

10:50 PM Question 2
2. Do I care too much about what people think?
Yes. That's why I don't wear shorts, bikinis, body con dresses, or high heels. That's why I censor myself.  It's why I constantly second guess myself.

10:51 PM Question 3
3. Am I with the right person?
Yes. Without a doubt. I'm with someone who makes me want to be a better person. Someone who makes me feel loved, unjudged, appreciated, and capable of achieving anything. Someone who thinks a day of watching sketchy reality TV and eating pizza and drinking wine while looking up funny pictures on the internet is a good day :)

10:52 PM
4. What's your deal breaker? (in matters of love)
Animal cruelty. Pedophilia.  

10:53 PM
5. What do I really want to do all day?
Exactly what I'm doing right now: at home, blogging, in my sweat pants. Writing essays, reviews, editorials has always been my dream. I just want to entertain and enrich. To have people read my work and say "yes, I know what that's like." And getting paid to do that would be choice.

10:56 PM
6. How do I want to be remembered?
[10: 57 oreo 2]
[10:57 I could really use some milk with these oreos]
[10:59 getting milk]
[11:00 damn. why are milk and oreos so good?]

11:01 PM
6. How do you want to be remembered?
As a writer. As a good person who owned her fuck ups. As someone who did good things for people.

11:04 PM
7. Do I say Yes enough?
Yes. I've said yes to 6 questions already. But yes, I say yes too much. I constantly take on too much in order to appease everyone, and it's gotten me in trouble more times than I can say. Learning to say "no" has been difficult, but I'm getting better and defining what I can and can't do. 

Conversely, I also say Yes to myself in way too many ways: Yes, you can order $150 worth of clothes off and return them later. Yes, you can keep those $150 worth of clothes from Yes, you can call out of work. Yes, you can go to bed without washing your face for the 3rd time this week. Saying yes to all my impulses and laziness also gets me into trouble. Saying no to the instant gratification I get from doing things that are bad for me is literally the hardest task for me.

So yes, Oprah, I do say Yes too much. Learning to say No is on the top of my Ways to get Better list.

I will however, say yes to another oreo dipped in milk. Goodness yes.

11:09 PM
oh wow, I didn't know Anna Paquin was in She's All That

why did I think oh wow

11:10 PM
8. Do I know how to say No?

11:11 PM
9. Am I helpless?
Yes and No. When it comes to math? yes, without a doubt. Cooking? no. Cleaning? no. Basic auto maintenance? Yes. Can I talk myself off a ledge? Yes. 
I'm good at figuring out how to get things done. Most of the time this involves Googling or taking stabs in the dark. But, I like to think that my ingenuity has gotten better and sharper as I've gotten older.

11:13 PM
I want to watch True Blood again. And I'm going to eat another oreo. 

11:14 PM
10. Am I helpful?
Yes. I volunteer to clean up, to help prepare things, lift things, reach for things, pick things up if I'm on the way somewhere. I listen to problems and occasionally I have good advice. I hold doors open. I volunteer for assignments at work. I mean, I definitely have my moments where I've been absolutely un-helpful on purpose, because I'm spoiled, but I like to think my helpful moments out-weigh my un-helpful moments. 

11:20 PM
my head hurts. These questions aren't as juicy as I thought they'd be. I wonder if Sister Wives is on Hulu

11:21 PM
Nope. I am shockingly disappointed.

11:22 PM
11. What am I afraid of?
Out of control credit card debt. Prison. Cancer. Family members and best friends dying. AIDS. Failure. What other people think. Cephroyds. Heights. Dolls. Winged insects. Attics and basements. Spiders. Losing my objectivity. That I'm letting life slip by. That I'm going to waste another decade. 

11:27 PM
12. Am I paying enough attention to the incredible things around me?
nope. I'm so anxious about the future, that 90% of the time, I let the every day slip by. I always worry that I'm not living life to the fullest, that I'm just wishing time to hurry up so I can get to a certain time or place. I wish I could be one of those people who lives in the moment, but I'm usually anticipating the future or over-examining what's already happened. BUT. In those rare moments when I do catch a sunset, or a spider eating a grasshopper, or my friends and I sitting together and laughing, or my 5 year old niece putting together wild but awesome outfits together out of stuff in my closet, or how really good a double cheese burger can be, I sit back and think "wow, little things are damn amazing." And it's a really good feeling.

11:32 PM
13. Have I accepted my body?
Oh boy. Yes and no.  More oreos.

11:33 PM
I need to change the channel.

11:34 PM
Wow, nothing is on. Princess Diaries, it is. 

11:35 PM
I didn't really date until I was 18, and the guys I dated were always complimentary/big fans of my shape. Except for that one time in 7th grade when Craig told Cassie he'd like me more if my boobs were bigger, I haven't been too scarred for life by what guys think of how I look. So I know that I dumbly fall into that category of women who get beaten down by super models and clothing models with tiny thighs, no hips, and round boobies, letting strangers and advertising dictate how I think about myself. That's fine, I accept that. And as such, I've been going back and forth on how I feel about my body since I was 12.  While I've never been overweight, I do have a dis-proportionate body shape. My chest has always been flat to small, my hips have always been as wide as my shoulders, and I've always had a roundness to belly, right around my belly button--even when I weighed less than 100 lbs. And, the older I get, the more weight I put on, the more disproportionate I feel, because I'm always more bottom heavy. 

Yeah, being too concerned with what everyone else thinks is 100% to blame for my "body issues." It's hard sometimes, because there aren't any body role models out there for people shaped like me. Take those Dove "True Beauty Ads." The women are either skinny with big breasts or kinda not-skinny with big breasts, or big belly and big thighs with big breasts. There's never one with small boobs and a big ass. All the "how to dress your shape"articles and books don't tell you how to address the taller than average pear shaped, small chested woman. It makes me feel like less of a woman, and to be honest, left out. 

But, I'm almost 30, but I'm finally digging' the way I look. I'm feeling more comfortable in tighter ftting skirts and pants, and I revel in the fact that I can buy shirts in the kid's sections and save money.  I like the way I look, I do. I do know how lucky I am. I wish I were more toned, and I wish my cheeks weren't so fat, but that requires working out. And I'm so, so lazy. So all the keys to making myself 100% satisfied with my body come from me putting effort into how I work. That's another thing I have to work on.

that and just STOP giving a fuck what other people think. haha

11:59 PM
waaah waaah waaaaah body issues. I need to get over it. My ass is bangin'. and there are much more important things to worry about. Like cancer. Or accidentally contracting AIDS.

12:01 AM
14. Am I strong enough?
Not in the ways that I want to be. I can't walk up a flight of stairs when I'm winded. I can't get the lug nuts off my tire. I can only do 10 squats before I die. I don't withdraw from the world when I'm in a dark place, but I can't compartmentalize that dark place quick enough, so I end up ruminating way longer than I'd like. I make goals and plans and lists, but I don't stick to them after I get discouraged. I have convictions, but often I feel like I back down because it's easier to be agreeable. I am strong. But it'd be nice to be stronger. In all aspects of my life. 

12:06 AM
15. Have I forgiven my parents?
My parents are fantastic. Did they mess up? Of course. All parents do. But, they did the best they could to raise me despite how they were raised. I don't really have a reason to need to forgive them. I'm just happy that with the older I get, the more I understand why they did what they did. 

12:10 AM
16. Do I want children?
Do I want to have children? Yes. That's a very new development. But I do want to have 1 or 2. It feels good to want to have kids. Now I just need to see if I can conceive. 

12:12 AM
17. Does what I wear reflect who I am?
Yes. Half-assed, clueless, boho-hipster who owns stock in black LC by Lauren Conrad leggings and who prefers 30 extra minutes of sleep over washing her hair and putting on make up. I hit the mark with my appearance about 4 times out of 10. I wish I could pull my outfits together more strategically, or even in a more polished manner, but I just don't. /lazy I don't know. I love fashion, but most of the time I have no idea what I'm doing.

12:17 AM
18. What am I missing out on?
Seemingly everything? haha. Laziness robs me of a lot of time to enjoy the good things in life. Good books. Good TV and movies. My nieces and nephews growing up. Good blog topics. Free lance gigs. Free events going on around town. Travel. Chasing my dreams.  Weeknight dinners with friends. 

12:21 AM
ugh, so tired. Have I really run out of oreos? what? noooooo

12:22 AM
19. Do I let myself fail enough?
Yes and no. I don't let myself fail enough, because I don't let myself try because I'm afraid I'll fail. I'm failing myself by not letting myself try. I don't let myself fail appropriately. I need to stop that.

12:29 AM
soooo tired.

12:23 AM
20. Why are we here?
Because we won the genetic lottery of perfect body temperature, hormones and welcoming uteri. It's all by chance. And we just have to make the best of it. Work hard to get what you want, or revel in what you have. 

12:26 AM
hmm... wow.

12:40 AM
Just woke up. There are oreo crumbs on my shirt. Ow.

The next day.

Overall, that wasn't a bad experience. What I learned from my time with Oprah is that I need to stop standing in my own way. If I could ratchet up my ambitions so they're at the same priority as my ambitions, I'd be unstoppable. I need to reign in my neurosis and insecurities so I can reach my full potential. I need to try. That's basically it. I need to try. And maybe that "trying" thing will help me put together better outfits and wash my hair every day and do my laundry once a week. Maybe I can try hard enough that I CHANGE LIVES.

But, I already knew all of that.

Have I gained "a little more wisdom and a lot more joy"as the tagline guaranteed? Yeah, sure. Mostly, I was really surprised at how easy it was to answer these questions. Not gonna lie. I thought the questions would be a little more ground breaking. And while I'm not bouncing off the walls with joy, I am sitting with a little smugness this morning.

So, ok, Oprah didn't change my life. But I did get a blog out of it. And maybe I even became a fan of Oprah. But then I read on and she says something like "I want to be in the space that stems from the Source of all things."And I think, never mind, that's why I'm not an Oprah fan.

Until next time, guys!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Something to Celebrate

Yesterday, Joel and I celebrated the day I lay sprawled out on Kristin's living room floor, drank an entire glass of rum and proceeded to spill my heart, drop all my cards, and admit that I liked him and only him and asked him to be my internet boyfriend. He laughed and said no, but he'd be my real life boyfriend. We were Skyping, but it felt, the way it feels each and every time I see him through that 12" inch screen, like he was in the room with me.

A lot of people didn't and don't understand why I'm in a longest-possible-distance-ever relationship. But then again, who cares? Every day I'm thankful to be with someone I revere, who I love like a best friend, and who I adore as a partner. Everyday I feel lucky. Every day I feel like everything I've been through has been worth it. 

Happy anniversary, love butt. Here's to many more years of late nights, inside jokes and weird, wonderful adventures. Now let's go eat pizza and judge people. :D

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Fiction Thursday (the late edition): That's good. That's ok.

12, 13, 14, 15. 16. I have 16 left. That's one more than half. I have one more, and then I've only taken half since Wednesday. That's good. That's ok. I'll have this last one and then I'll save the rest. I don't need to take them all the time. They don't work as well when I take them so much. Remember when I stopped for 2 months and then took one? That day we cleared out the tree stumps from the backyard and I really needed one because I strained my back. Jen drove out to Mike's and picked up subs for everyone. We ate outside in the evening while the neighborhood kids played soccer. It felt spectacular. So happy. Like another world. Jen was so beautiful. She still is. I hope she's not mad at me anymore. I can't believe I fell asleep through her speech. I took too many that day. Just wanted to be lively to all those people. Just wanted to have a good time. To not worry so much about how my pants didn't fit right. They didn't fit because I bought the cheap ones. I don't like tailors. I don't like people touching me. Touching me and judging me because pants don't fit me right off the rack. Everything fits Jen right off the rack. She's spectacular. I don't know why she ever wanted me. I hope she's not mad at me anymore. I need to call her. Fuck, I keep forgetting to call her. Work is hard and these make me sleepy and I go to bed too early. It's always something. Something in the way. I'll call her tonight when I get home. Only two more stops, then home. Yes. I'll call her and then I'll fix my tea like always and I'll take this last one. I won't even snort it. I'll just swallow it. Or I could take it now and call her in a few hours when it's started to wear off. No that won't work. She always knows. I'll call her, and I'll take it after so it's like a reward. Why do I have to be rewarded to call my wife. That's sick. You're a sick asshole who needs his pants tailored. But I'm trying. I'm trying to be better. I'm saving half of these. I won't take this half unless I absolutely need them. Only when my neck is bothering me. That's good. That's ok. That fucking accident. I shouldn't have been driving. I knew that. I know that. I crashed and wrenched my neck and now this. Of course I'm not drinking as much now. I don't need to. I have these. Fuck. That's the whole problem. These. Just like everyone says. From one crutch to another. I don't even want them. But I have them. They're here. I like that I have them. I like that have half left. I can do this. I can prove it to Jen that I'm not an addict. I'm not an addict. That's good. That's ok. Addicts take more than I do. Addicts don't go to work everyday like I do. Ok, I've called out a few times. But my job isn't in danger. And Jen left. But wives leave their husbands everyday. I was a drunk. I deserved her leaving me for how much I drank. She didn't leave me over these. She left me because I drank. These are ok. I need these. I have a medical need for these. The doctor says I need these. I have one plus half of these left over. How many did I take on Tuesday? 3. Wednesday, 3. Monday? 5. Monday was a bad day. Everyone has bad days. It's ok. That's why I'm stopping. I already have half left. I'm good. I'm ok. Jen will see. I'll call her tonight and tell her. Tell her that I'm stopping. I miss her. She'll come back when she sees how good I am. I'll only take this one tonight. And then I'll have half left over. And that's good. That's ok.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

9 Years Later, or Life Finds a Way

I went on a re-set password quest this morning that led me down the black hole of the email account I used while I was in college. I haven't logged in to check email there for about 5 years, so I've mostly forgotten about any content it held.

Ugh, that was awkward.

And then, it went from awkward to, I don't know... more awkward? I had 3 drafts in the Draft folder, and one of them was this, written on 8/20/2004, eight days before I started my sophomore year of college/first year at George Mason University:

"anyway, i can't write much because i've gotta formally withdraw from my school in NY, take a shower, call out from work, return my sister's shoes, and get drunk. it's going to be a good day."

Ever have one of those moments where you were like "ohhhhhh, so there's where it all went wrong." That's what went through my head. Except mine was like, "ohhhhhh, so there's EXACTLY where it all went wrong."

I don't know what was going through my head that summer. But I can pin-point exactly where I was that day: sitting in my parent's den in that haunted 1800's farm house they rented, my mind going 500 miles an hour, but going exactly nowhere. After I sent that message, I emailed the registrar at Adelphi University and withdrew. I rejected my scholarship and my entrance to the Honor's College and my spot on the Newspaper and my close proximity to NYC and the opportunities that could have come with it so that I could date a guy from high school. I withdrew, called out of work, returned the shoes, got day drunk, saw Without a Paddle and ended up making out with Chris at Denny's as a waitress brought me my Super-T sandwich.

That day marks the beginning of 9 years where I just didn't know what the fuck I was doing. 9 years of making questionable decisions, of spending too much money, of going to work hungover, of skipping class and missing deadlines and wasting good opportunities. 9 years of livejournaling and myspacing and facebooking. 9 years of bitching and moaning instead of pursuing my dreams. 9 years of just hating myself into a corner until I didn't want to do anything but watch movies and shut down. 9 years of just letting things happen to me.

When I read that email, I thought, Oh my god. That's it. That's where it all went wrong. And I thought, as I always do, about what would have happened on the afternoon that I got my acceptance letter from GMU. If I'd taken Chris' luke warm reaction of "oh, cool." as the red flag that it was and just said No, I'm going back to New York. Where would I be now? What would I be doing? Who would I be?  

I always thought that my 20's would be the end all be all of my existence, and that I ruined everything by not staying near the city of my dreams. I spent a lot of time beating myself up about things I couldn't change. That doesn't happen anymore. I look back now and I see all those lost, wasted years were absolutely worth it--not a burden. It was 9 years of life-bonding with the people who'd become my nearest and dearest. 9 years of unexpected travel opportunities. 9 years of meeting some of the greatest people to walk this planet. 9 years of getting to shake hands or share hugs with some of my idols. 9 years of really getting to know my family and where all this comes from.

Bless you, hindsight. And Bless you, luck. Because right now, because of all those decisions, after that day in my parent's den, I'm damn-near exactly where I want to be. And I look forward, knowing that the best is yet to come.

So, thank you, woman-child of my 20's. You were such a Hot Mess, but you followed your nervous, sad brain instincts through the bad parts of town, and you got me to an exceptionally rad place.

go 'head 20 year old.

Also, Younger Self, stop calling yourself fat. 10 years and 12 inches later you'll wonder how you ever could have considered 31 inch hips to be "fat." Youth and metabolism are wasted on the young.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...