Summers been keeping me busy (and away from journaling) and I am sort of ready for the cliche of Fall and the slowness of the season to return.
I have always had this sort of love/hate relationship with summer. Obviously when I was in school, summer represented freedom and the opportunity to read and write as much as I wanted too. I liked learning and being in school but I loved having 3 months away to do my own thing which often consisted of binge watching tv. I loved waking up later and staying up even later. I loved bike rides and summer foods. But that was/is sort of where the love began and end for me.
I have never enjoyed summer heat and worse summer crowds. I am not someone who is always comfortable in my skin and dressing for summer weather is a struggle. Not only that but the things that to tend to epitomize summer exhaust and overwhelm me.
Generally, I am not a person who 'summers' well. I'd rather spend a hot summer day at home, under blankets, reading a book than outside interacting with the world.
This summer however, I seem to have found the balance between my introverted ways with the enjoyment of summer activities. There has been an abundance of bike riding, movie watching, summer food eating, and exploration in between hibernating, book reading, Netflix watching and naps. lots of naps.
I also discovered that I love sitting in the sun. Just sitting: nothing less nothing more. On my lunch breaks especially now since my work friend Lyle put in his two weeks a month ago ( a long hilarious story, i'll have to write about), I spend lunch breaks by myself, because I am still quite the pariah in my office, just sitting in the sun. The weather has been so nice the last few days that for 45 minutes a day I sit outside on the patio, eyes closed, face turned upwards while the sun hits my skin. It's a nice and comforting feeling that I will miss once summer comes to a close. I will miss the warmth despite the fact that I am very eager about fall and autumn happenings.
I was so convinced that summer would be ruined because of memories of ashat that I was hesitant and almost reluctant to participate or enjoy any part of it. My logic does not always make sense as I am always thinking and over analyzing and wanting to be two steps ahead of disaster. But on ashats birthday, after weeks of convincing myself that I would not be able to handle the day or memory of him, I was struck by how normal the day was. Outside of the emergency 'are you going to be okay' text from Kat, the actual day was not too bad and my thoughts were so far removed from him that i feel like I am finally moving past him, us and whatever we had (though he does and will creep up in my writing a lot)
It's not as soul crushing and heart breaking as I expected.
I was so convinced that no not knowing him would be almost as painful as being in love with him when he was so easily not interested or capable of loving me. I found out recently that he may have actual gotten married to eggplant head before her birthday (you know, because she had a eye tumor and he wanted her to have insurance because she was near death and all...le sigh, how and why did I fall for this boy) and while the news was shocking, it wasn't crushing. Nothing about my life after ashat has been crushing. Instead it is the opposite. I am comforted and relieved that he's just not a part of the life I am creating for myself and there is something liberating and enjoyable about this.
Nothing has been more evident of this than the ease and enjoyment of summer this year. I've gone to ballets, Broadway shows, parks and seen a lot of bad movies in theaters. Kat introduced the wonderful world of podcasts and I am toying with the idea of starting my own, just for the hell of it. I went to a theme park this summer and several bbq's and of course I sat in the sun a lot, during the week and especially on the weekends.
The pinnacle of summer was my mom coming into town for 9 days to help me decorate my apartment.
While the move has turned out to be one of the best forced decisions of my life, the stress of the predicament made adjusting a little difficult.I have done a pretty good, and quick, job decorating and making the place feel like home but I think my mom wanted to give my home her blessing and seal of approval. And while her last visit to New York was not that great this one was pretty successful. She bought me a crap load of decorative things and we even went to D.C for two days, because why not. For once I could finally afford to a mini vacation and my mom has always wanted to go to Washington D.C.
It's sort of weird being in a position both financially and personally to take care of my mother a little bit. I mean, I am still pretty broke as hell but for the most part I was able to plan this trip to D.C and cover half of the expenses. I planned everything from the train ride down to the hotel we ended up staying in and my mom was relieved that she did not have to be the adult for once and make decisions because all of a sudden I was capable of taking charge of things.
The trip to D.C was pretty good, save for the mistake I made of inviting my freeloading aunt (my mom's younger sister) along with us. This is the same aunt who i lived with when I first moved to New York before she kicked me out of her apartment because...I don't really know. After a year of living with her, she phoned my mom one afternoon and asked her when I was moving out of her place because I was taking up too much space or what not, despite the fact that i was never really home. Our relationship has always been a little weird. Growing up she was the fun cool aunt who loved to go shopping and do other girly things that I had no interest in. So when she was stuck babysitting me or forced to interact with me, she would criticize my un-girly ways. Our adult relationship is very similar.
Living with her was a completed and utter nightmare and moving out probably saved me from despising her. Outside of my dad, who i don't see that often, she is the only relative I have in New York and for the sake of my baby cousin, I put the terror of living with her behind me because she's family. But during the planning of this trip to D.C she never once mentioned paying for anything: hotel, transportation, food. My mom and I joked, based on knowing her, that she wouldn't chip in one bit and that we were essentially giving her and my baby cousin a free all expenses paid trip to D.C. And of course this is exactly what ended up happening.
She did not offer to help pay for the hotel, transportation, food or any other miscellaneous expense. But that wasn't the worst part. For someone who did not chip in at all she was very adamant that she did not want to see any of the historical sights and instead wanted to hit up Walmart and Target.
To say i was livid would be an understatement. I spent all this money and time planning a trip for me and mom, asked her and my cousin to come along as an afterthought and she had the nerve to complain about everything. I keep my composure up until the moment I said I wanted to visit the Library of Congress (because I've heard it's beautiful, and there are so many books and snerk gerks it's a LIBRARY) and my aunt replied "i am not going to a library while we were in D.C. Who wants to spend a place that stocks books".
There were no words. Absolutely no words. I was so mad, the only thing I could do was walk away. I ended up spending the afternoon by myself in D.C. for fear that I would punch my aunt in the throat if she said anything else. I have never throat punched anyone but she was a prime contender that afternoon.
The rest of my moms trip ended up being really fun and eventful. We returned to my apartment on Saturday and spent the rest of the weekend (and her stay) decorating and drinking wine (I am not sure when my mom became such a heavy wine drinker but she hooked me up with a shit load of wine!). It was fun having her in town. She was lively and well spirited. I was relaxed and even tempered.
I like living alone. I like my space and escape from the world. But having my mom here made me miss the simple everyday of companionship. I liked having someone at home waiting for me. I miss telling someone about my day. It is something I miss far more than I would like to admit. And while I am sure adopting a cat would cure some of my loneliness and desire for companionship, I am wise enough to realize that too may not be enough (even though, I would really really like a pet. I am just not sure if my landlord allows pets though).
It makes me anxious that I am going to have to put myself out there soon if I want any shot at a real relationship. I am not one who likes to put much of an effort into anything when it comes to socialization. I want to just skip this middle part of yearning and just get to the part where I have a handful of good friends and a cute boy to come home too every night. A cute nice boy, in my cute nice apartment with our adorable cats. I can dream can't I and Fall is such a magical season, I am hopeful that these things are on the horizon.
Anyway, back to work. I seriously spend more time trying to look busy than actually being busy. I don't know how much more of this "9-5" life I can tolerate. More on that later.
Today I sat through 5 different meetings at work. I wish this was an exaggeration.
Every week we seem to come up with another reason why we need to have a meeting regarding previous meetings....and it is driving me nuts.
Today was a little different only because 2 out of the 5 meetings were to go over office policies and such but that did not stop me from zoning out.
Following the meetings, we then got a mass office email asking everyone to meet in the conference room at 4:30 to partake in another 'birthday cake-awkward singing-followed by awkward returning to our cubicles to avoid conversing with co-workers' celebration.
I casually ducked out of the office at 4:29 to answer a phone call and spent 15 minutes hiding on another floor until I was certain the 'celebrating was over'. Luckily no one noticed (or didn't care) that I was MIA for the celebration and I was relieved not to have to make up some lie about where i was.
I hate that I hate my job but not for reasons that have to do with my actual responsibilities there. I hate that this gig turned out to be just a place I go to for 8 hours a day to make money and not a place where I am doing something I love with people I like being around.
July is tough month for a billion and one reasons (most of it having to do with memories of ashat) and I feel crankier, grumpier and sort of in the dumps lately. I made the stupid mistake of unblocking him for a few days on facebook because I thought I could easily resist the urge to go to his page. My will lasted all but 10 seconds and I found out he is now stationed in Japan, probably living it up while I sulk and still think about him more than I should.
As someone who is always giving advice, I find myself telling my friends more often than not that they can't spend their life measuring their achievements and experiences to someone else's. This is hard to do of course when social media makes it seem as if every one is progressing at a faster rate. If you aren't getting engaged, moving in with your significant others, returning to college for another degree, landing a new job, traveling the world or having a baby the constant reminders that everyone around you is...can be depressing.
I rarely get jealousy of the monumental life events of others. Generally I tend to a) be happy for someone who expresses the good fortune in their life (or just uninterested enough to care )and I am unabashedly proud of every small or big achievement in my own life. Like today I was able to find socks that matched. That shit is huge! I was so freaking happy, I wish I could have announced it to the whole world. Instead I just walked around all day knowing if I took my shoes off, i'd for once, have socks that matched.
The only time I fail to follow my own advice (of not being a hater) is when it comes to ashat. He has made me so miserable these last few years, that the thought that he now has this exciting new life sans me depresses the shit out of me. In my black and white thinking, he so easily gets to move on and start over and experience new and tremendous things while I sit here at home on a Monday night, drinking apple cider sulking about my shit job, my lack of a social life, and my feelings of ennui.
And this isn't to say I don't want him to have a good and kind life. Surprisingly, despite everything, I do not wish misery on him. But I am not going to lie, when I saw his announcement on facebook that he was now stationed in Japan I was filled with anger, jealousy, rage and resentment. It was stupid punch in the gut in some weird way, like how the hell do you get to live this amazing life, when you are such a shitty person, when you have caused so much pain. How do you get to just continue on without any sense of guilt, while I hold on to everything like it's my curse.
I quickly blocked him again and sure as hell will not let curiosity get the best of me for a very long time. But I suspect this month will continue to be hard regardless (his birthday is just around the corner, I might literally spend all day under the covers) but I can't stew in this funk for too long.
I tried OK Cupid for a hot second and realized quickly that I am somehow not made for the world of online dating.
But i want and miss companionship I just wish it were a little more personal and organic than reading through profiles and getting a ton of 'wanna hook up" conversation starters.
I think I would like to be courted. I'd like to be approached in a bookstore or a supermarket or even a chill bar by someone who notices me in passing and is compelled to say hello and engage in small talk.
I have had a few of these interactions and they have all been great and interesting but do to the abruptness of it nothing ever pans out much further than that. I am charmed, I believe said person is charmed but when it's time for us to part there is never an exchange of numbers or 'if you're ever free".
That approach is a little more difficult and risky.
Sometimes though, I wish I could just skip to something comfortable and nice with a boy that I deeply a fan of. Sean wasn't shit but he did provide companionship from time to time and now i finally feel ready for an actual, not fucked up, so cute it hurts, complicated but bearable companionship.
I am just not sure where or how to go about this dating world that is much too complex and impersonal for me.
I repeat. This is not a photograph of me. I do not look anything like this (trust me) but I took a personal day off from work (cough, cough) to treat myself to a much needed hair cut (my hair is wild and shaggy these days) and I'm hoping my hairdresser can recreate this summer look. Look how pretty this girl, who is not me, looks. Look at her hair and beachy vibe...I want all of this today.
So yea, I haven't really figured out how imma walk in to work tomorrow with a new refreshing look after taking a personal day but I don't really care. Work has been the pits this week and if I have to sit through another damn meeting where someone places blame and complains imma scream.
Instead I am on the train to the city, book and phone in hand. I will get my hair done and explore city blocks and buy gelato. Those are my plans. Work will have to take a backseat :)
As work takes up a bulk of my day and time, I feel very Bridget Jones Diary isque these days writing from my cubicle as I count down the hours until 6 (2 hours and 43 whole minutes) and document my semi-adult happenings. All I need now is a Darcy isque suitor and other such hilarity in the mix and my life would really feel like it was on track.
While my current situation borders on Bridget Jones territory it is also a mix of Mean Girls and Office Space. While I have endured much worse than office drudgery and bitchassness, the wear and tear is inevitable. This being the first real office gig I've had, I don't think i was prepared for the atmosphere that is birth from cubicles, weekly meetings, spreadsheets and annoying and mandatory cake and happy birthday sing-a-longs. Yes, happy effing birthday caroling... in the conference room.... every time someone's birthday comes around.
Last week, well past lunch and yet way before the end of the day, we were all uniformly called into the conference room where we were forced to gather around the table and sing happy birthday to another co-worker who's birthday was this week. While I love me some cake (i love me some cake) there is nothing more mortifying than singing happy birthday off key for a person you don't really know or care for. At the end of the awkward celebration crept back to our cubicles before having to actually engage in conversation.
It's brutal. I have never worked so hard for food in my life and I am embarrassed every time I am forced to participate.
I realize now that I may not be an office person, for obvious reasons, and while I am good at my job I do hope it is as temporary as one of those tattoo's you apply to your skin with warm water and a cloth. My fear is that like Le Sad Store temporary will turn into "how the hell have i been here for six years" when I barely see myself lasting a year.
The main issue i have with working in an office, or this office in particular, is that I am so used to being a part of a team (albeit a dysfunctional one) that the separateness drives me crazy. Though we all work in the same space, mere inches away from each other, we are 'separated' by departments and entitlement. On a daily basis it is a whose penis is bigger competition and if i can be honest no one is packing heat. No one.
Just a few minutes ago a client called with a complaint. I put her on hold and tried to get her in touch with anyone in the office who could help her. Perhaps my mistake was saying "can anyone help [insert name here] she has a is having an issue with..." Immediately motherfuckers pretended like they didn't know what a phone was. There was a cacophony of "well i can't help her because it's not my job" "well it's not my job either" "have her speak to [insert name here]" "i don't wanna help her! have her call.." this went for longer than it should. Eventually I just took a message and apologized because someone would have to return her call.
Everyone was pleased that they passed the 'buck'..I instead seethed with frustration and agitation. I know work is not supposed to be fun, I know that for 8 hours a day I am required to put in as much effort so that it appears I am doing work (blogging has helped, as the sound of my typing makes it seem as if I am doing work). But I also know this there is something to account for working with people you actually enjoy seeing 40 hours a week. 40 hours is a lot of time! I spend more time with these people than I do my friends, family and possibly even netflix! And me and Netflix spend a lot of time together.
So when my work days are long and tedious, when my head feels like it being stepped on by a very adorable but heavy elephant it is not because what i do is terrible. It is who i work with that is. And the adjustment to this has not been easy. While Le Sad Store financially, emotionally and mentally was a trying and often difficulty place to work there are moments where I would trade the stability of this job and the dreaded isolation I feel from my co-workers to be back at Le Sad Store when things were okay and my nights were spent hanging out with my best friends. It was a very small window of okay times there but dammit they were good.
I am sure the atmosphere of retail, combined with the employees at Le Sad Store contributed to our work environment being unlike any other place I have worked. When it was good, the pieces just sort of fit together nicely. We were this perfect team of work productivity and friendship. I legitimately had a friendship, or at least kinship, with everyone I worked with there and I fear that is is something I will never have again.
This office gig is just a rather static space where a bunch of people who want/need money gather for 5 days a week for 8 hours a day. I can't tell you the number of days I have gone with out uttering an actual word to the person in the cubicle next to me. It's freaking weird. Just plain weird.
So having Patricia as a sort of built in friend was refreshing, especially since also worked at Le Sad Store (tho we didn't talk much the short time she worked there). So, while I do not mind that creepy guy is too scared to even look in my direction these days yet alone talk to me, the awkward tension between Patricia and I feels like a loss. Not a huge one, but an 8 hours a day, 5 days a week loss.
Lyle is the only one who has stood by my side like a trusted confidant and sidekick. And while there is something nice and confronting about his work companionship the complete and utter desertion from Patricia in favor of Shane is freaking unbelievable. Unbelievable. I feel like a contestant on Big Brother who has suddenly gone from having house allies to having none and the shift is strange for various reasons.
I can totally understand why Shane has stopped talking to me. I actually am grateful for his cold shoulder and distance. I'd rather be ignored than asked inappropriate questions. There is a reason his nickname is Creep Master Funk, he gave off this incredible vibe of being "frustrated" and I got this sense he thought I could relieve that tension. When I was the only other person, besides him staying till six on Fridays, I asked Kat to chill with me for an hour in the office so I would not have to be alone with him. Kat immediately picked up on Shane's creepiness and also said he gave off an incredibly disgusting vibe
I have always had this fear of not being believed. Like an overwhelming fear of it. I was never a girl who cried wolf because I saw what happened to that kid. The moment he needed everyone to take him seriously, people where unfazed by his cry for help and brushed him aside. They like were 'eff you kid, we don't believe you anymore. You are forever branded a liar".Ugh, worst nightmare ever. A small part of me has always been so honest because of this fear. When it comes to very practical elements of my life I am truthful and honest to a fault.Lying is akin to being untrustworthy and who the hell wants to be untrustworthy.
With Patricia suddenly giving me the cold shoulder and actual stank bitch face attitude, I can only conclude that she thinks I lied and made the whole thing up. She believes that Shane is not a creepy older horny guy who asked me inappropriate questions. She believes I exaggerated my discomfort level. She thinks I cried wolf, something I would not and have never done. The worst part is that she has shattered my belief that when it comes down to it, girls stick together. I mean aren't we supposed to?
I can't imagine me reacting the way she has. This is not to say I wanted her to take sides and choose me because eww how freaking disgusting is it of a male co-worker to be so creepy and brazen about it. I didn't expect her to stop talking to Shane because wtf married guy with a newborn baby what the hell are you doing. But I guess a part of me was hoping that would be the outcome cause maybe I did want to make a new friend and for the most part Patricia seemed like a good candidate.