Goals Update: Best Birthday in a Long Time+ Book Haul from NYC

I don’t think I’ve hid the fact that I’ve had some struggles lately or that I’m “working on myself” quite a bit. That being said, this past Sunday (well the 15th( was my Birthday so I took a break from everything I was doing and hoped on a train to NYC to visit my other friend in Manhattan. It was awesome (besides one store experience… see my previous My Experience at the Glossier Show Room to hear more about that) and I pretty much had my dream birthday besides the fact that I was broke af. But here are some goal updates with an added bonus of a book haul from The Strand.

Job:  I was hired at my dream job. Let me repeat because I’m so happy–MY DREAM JOB. It’s a job I’m perfectly suited for and I’ll basically be selling books. After all my money troubles and health struggles, it’s so satisfying and just plain nice to be able to write that I have my orientation tomorrow. Besides becoming a therapist, I feel like this is the job I was born to do. When I told one of my best friends Joey, she said that it was a perfect job for me because she associates me with books and warmth. I’m so happy that I can finally get afloat financially and go to work everyday.

GREs: I’m super nervous for these but to be fair, three of the programs I’m applying for don’t require the GREs. I really need to get on top of this though because my test date on the 4th is coming up.

Cooking: I’m back to making my rice balls and tofu. My bread making class (using yeast) is going really well and I’m learning a lot. I just made Anadama Bread and it turned out wonderful. I made Raisin Bread the week before and that also worked out great. I’m very glad that I’m learning this super useful skill because homemade bread is the best. It also doesn’t take too long to make! Next time I’ll take a picture of my loaf before I cut into it!

Transportation: I still have my amazing health insurance that helps with transportation but I really need to get my license. I needed to get it pretty much yesterday, but I’ve had the GREs and other stuff going on. I’m going to have to pay my parents for gas now, and honestly, I’d rather have the freedom of being behind the wheel. Basically, this is the only goal I’m hardcore failing at.

Volunteering/ Classes: I’ve actually been volunteering at a mental health clubhouse the last month, doing their data entry, helping out with interns and planning, and stuff like that. It’s been extremely fulfilling and I’m made a lot of friends and met a lot of nice people along the way.

I’m also still continuing to work towards my grad school goals. I’ve gotten all the letters of rec I needed, wrote a personal statement, and have started all my applications. My parents birthday present to me is paying for $130 dollars worth of application fees. Getting a job is also really helping this goal because now I’ll be able to afford to pay to apply!

Dating: Has been going wonderful. My boyfriend is visiting me right now.

Here’s a photo of us:

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He’s super wonderful and damn near perfect so I’m really happy right now.

That’s it! I actually had a panic attack the other day (which was awful) because I feel like too many good things are going on in my life right now. I just feel like my life has never gone this well and the universe is going to take it away from me somehow, someway, which is super illogical.

Oh I almost forgot… the books I got from the Strand for my Birthday this past week!

  • Sex and Rage by Eve Babitz, which is written just how I like the books I read to be written. It’s a bit magical and poetic. A quote from the back is that it a novel about “a dreamy young girl moving between LA and New York”. I highly recommend checking Eve Babitz out.
  • Total Mood Killer by Merritt K and Niina Pollari is a poetry book that I also highly recommend. My favorite poem so far is “Every Mascara Is Exactly the Same” and features the lines “i wondered how many makeups/ it would take for you to like me”. It’s a beautiful book so far. 🙂
  • Moody Bitches: The Truth About the Drugs You’re Taking, the Sleep You’re Missing, the Sex You’re Not Having and What’s Really Making You Crazy by Julie Holland, MD is a really interesting book that I picked up because it relates to my chosen field (psychology) and a lot of it seems centered on discussing psychiatric drugs, which is definitely a subject I enjoy reading multiple opinions on. So far her writing style is extremely engaging and the subject is hitting home a bit. I figure that even if I disagree with her (which I haven’t so far but I’m not too far in), it will still be worth it to read more opinions and be more aware of some of the literature that’s around and heavily concerns my field.
  • Smut: Stories by Alan Bennett is just a fun book I picked up. I wanted something a little out there, something fun, and something “tender and comic” as The Independent (London) says on the back of the book. I haven’t really started the book yet, but it’s a really small book that I can’t imagine will take too much time to read.

 

Thanks for reading! What books are you currently reading? And what are your goals? How is your life going? Comment below!

 

 

 

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Transportation Troubles: A Goal Update

A week ago I wrote  a post enthusiastically (perhaps a little too enthusiastic given the circumstances) describing my immediate future goals. I’ve decided that every week I’m going to write a post that tracks my goal progress, provided of course, I have any updates. Thankfully, this week I’ve made some progress.

LSAT and GRE prep: Going well. I set up a study program to cover my testing weak points and strengthen my strong points. I’m pretty confident about this test and I plan to take it in the early days of August (giving myself enough time to retake it if need be). I got my LSAT Kaplan book in the mail late on Sunday and I’ve given it a precursory look over. The test doesn’t look anywhere near as difficult as I thought it would be. I need to set up a study plan for this test and get past my Mother’s not so shocking disbelieve in my future.

Job Progress: I sent in more job applications, have another one set to mail, and secured two interviews so far. However, I can’t make it to those interviews because one job is too far away and the other isn’t a good fit. Honestly, I’m a bit discouraged but I hope that I’ll get more interview opportunities soon.

Furniture: I have two solid wood bookcases that were gifted to me and a lamp I purchased at Walmart. I’ve also chosen a light peach shade for my room and I’m painting this weekend. However, I haven’t been able to find a mattress, which is by far the most important piece of furniture I have on my list to secure. I need a damn mattress soon or I’m never going to get a good night’s sleep.

The Transportation issue: Abysmal. I can’t buy a bike until I get a mattress, I have no one to teach me how to drive, and I can’t afford a driving class until I have a job. It doesn’t help that a lot of jobs have ‘driver licensed required’ under the list of job descriptions. A mess.

Cooking: Haven’t been able to find my old recipe books yet, but I’ve had a few tests that tell me my liver is healthy again. I’m able to drink wine again. Nothing seems so bad with a little bit of cheap alcohol and a lack of body pain/ weakness. I’m now an expert on cooking firm tofu too.

Volunteering and Community College Classes: No progress without transportation or a job. However, I am getting my BA diploma delivered soon. It should be here on Friday. Thank you Cornell, for whatever it’s worth.

Extra: Online dating. My Mother really wants me to be dating again (despite having ended  a relationship less than a month ago) and she wants me to shell out a ton of money for a pay site like EHarmony or Match.com because she thinks ‘more quality people pay more money’. I’m not really interested. My experiment with Okcupid has already been enough for me… despite having 350 people ‘interested’ in me, I get a lot of messages about ‘taming monsters’ (don’t ask), how hot or alternatively, how ‘very aesthetically appealing my facial features are’ (a direct quote), messages that made it clear the guy didn’t bother to read my profile, messages crediting Joss Whedon with the creation of feminism (I love Buffy too but it’s definitely not the ‘reason for feminism’), and messages describing how a guy I’ve only said hi to will treat me right. All and all a waste of time.

 

 

Goals, goals, goals

Figuring out to do with my life post-graduation, post-breakup, pre-employment, and in the midst of an illness and eating disorder recovery has been difficult, especially when I’m banned from exercise and my energy is zapped. Still, I’ve made a list of a few goals that I hope will get me feeling more positive and less like sitting on the couch drinking my favorite cheap red wine blend (still, shoutout to Trader Joe’s for cheap, yet affordable alcohol). So in no particular order (with the exception of #1):

  1. Get a job. I’m used to having something to do and I’m not doing great staying idle. I also need money and not in the I-need-spending-money sort of way, but in the I-desperately-need-money-to-live way.Hence stalking online job advertisement websites, tweaking my resumes, writing cover letters, and applying to every place that has a help wanted sign. Somewhere has to come through, right?
  2. Start studying for both the GREs and the LSATs. I don’t know exactly what career I want to go into, but I know my future will include grad school and helping people. For the past few years I’ve been leaning strongly towards a career in public/ mental health or a career as a lawyer focused on prosecuting sexual assault cases. Taking the these tests is a good place to start.
  3. Buy a bike. That’s it. I need an easier, cost effective way to get around the small town/ city I’ll be living in. I also look forward to using it to exercise (once I’m pretty much all better).
  4. Furnish and paint my new room. I have no furniture (not even a mattress) to speak of  so I need to need get some basic furniture at thrift stores, garage sales, and cheap retailers so I don’t end up in a sleeping on the floor for an extended period of time.
  5. Learn to drive. I never needed to know how to drive before because I lived in a city and then a college town so I took the bus everywhere. Also, I’m terrified of cars. Now I have to find a way to get past that.
  6. Go through vegetarian recipe books to learn how to make meals I can cook. I’ve been a vegetarian for a year and a half and I’ve done a terrible job of it. I need more protein and iron in my diet or I won’t be getting better anytime soon.
  7. Volunteer. No justification or reason needed.
  8. Take a community college class. I already miss being in school. As soon as I can afford to, I like to take a class in one of the many subjects I was interested in, but never had the time to explore in school.

Thanks for reading! What are your goals at the moment?

6 Jobs Apps, No Dice (Yet)

I hated college. Actually, I’ve hated school since I moved to middle-of-fuck-super-conservative nowhere, but I had hopes for college. I thought I could get on medicine and into therapy that would help my  recurrent Major Depression and that I would grow into my body and perhaps, leave behind the unfortunate mess I’d made of my high school career. Instead, I dragged up the past, continued some ill-advised relationships from high school, developed an eating disorder, and ended up in the hospital for a week at the end of my Freshman year.  My enthusiasm and what was left of my ego was more or less crushed by the end of my second semester. I came into college sad, but believing in fresh starts and my life’s potential, and left slack-jawed and stunned by reality. The hospital legacy and bad relationship patterns would follow me throughout college: by the end I had been to the ER six times, stayed in the hospital a total of four weeks, and had total of five relationships that ended in varying degrees of lack of success.

Two weeks ago when my best friend drove me to my new home, I cried pathetically. It hit me in the last week that my life was changing, and it might not be for the better as I hoped. I was leaving behind everything and even though I didn’t love half of it, I didn’t have a blueprint for the future. School was my life and had been for 17 years. It was the one thing I had left to make myself feel somewhat secure. A good paper grade, a kind word from a TA, or acing a test meant the world to me. As much as I hated how my self-esteem seemed to depend on my grades and my ability to complete my work, I didn’t want to try to leave without that security or build something new.  I cried for that.

I also cried because I was leaving behind a boyfriend of sorts who was planning on going to grad school,  a trip to Europe, and a road trip in the time after our separation. I developed mono one week before graduation (a consequence of living in the dorms), couldn’t do anything besides stay in bed, had to cancel my trip to Vegas, and hadn’t been able to kiss him goodbye. When the relationship was on-going, I hated it half the time. I was consistently on the verge of breaking up with him because it came clear that he didn’t respect me or my opinions and had issues understanding my boundaries. But as soon as it became clear I’d never see him again and that we wouldn’t be able to stay friends, I mourned the relationship as I had any other. Suddenly, I wanted it continue even as I knew two weeks before I wanted relief.

In the next two weeks he would predictably stop talking to me,  despite promising not to, and I would curse myself for ever having believed someone gave a shit about me and for having wasted four months of my life when I could’ve ended it after a week. The nice and caring shit he said to me continually ran through my head along with the stupid bracelet me gave me the last time I saw him and the pictures we took together that he insisted upon saying “he enjoyed our time together and wanted something to remember me by”. Bullshit. All bullshit, and in my mind, unnecessarily painful due to the lack of honesty. I was crushed and if I’m being honest, since it’s only been two weeks, I’m still crushed.

I internalized everything and became a depressed mess on bed rest who annoyed all their family and friends with their gloom and doom, “I-hate-myself-and-my-life” proselytizing. Normally I’d drink a few bottles of wine and get the fuck over it quicker and get to the gym, but that wasn’t an option with an illness that was damaging my liver.

So I did what I could with what I had. I revised my resume, wrote a Cover Letter, decided to apply for six jobs a day, signed up for OKCupid, devoted my resources to attempting to get better as soon as possible (so I could finally demolish that wine bottle), and bought a book to study for the LSATs. If I didn’t have any self-worth anymore, I was going to try my hardest to create some.