A Shorter Post of Me Complaining About Doing More With My Life

After a long, accidental/unintentional hiatus, I have returned with the same old whining and revelations I have once a month, basically. Lately, I’ve been feeling really down in the dumps about pretty much everything you can feel down in the dumps about: my job, my friends, my future, my life, my passions, myself. And that’s not a cool thing. I complain about it all the time and I’m here to complain about it again.

I know I posted something similar to this not long ago, but then I got a text from one of my closest friends from Texas the other night saying that she had read my post and was worried about me. Worried. About me. While I appreciate the concern and unwavering support (and also the fact that people are reading my blog), I hate the fact that people are worried about me. That people feel the need to text me to make sure I’m doing ok with life. (Yes, Mindy, I’m talking to you. I love you a lot, but ugh.) I know a lot of my posts are of me whining about how not ok I am with my life, but I guess I didn’t realize they were cause for worry? Doesn’t everyone get into ruts? Isn’t it hard for everyone to pull themselves out of a slump because if there’s someone who can easily get themselves out of a slump please have them contact me because I would like to have a chat with him/her, thank you. I actually didn’t give any thought to this text until today aka right now and I’ve decided to make a change.

Yes, I know what you’re all thinking: She’s making another list of changes that she will not be able to keep and then a month later she’ll post about how terrible she is at keeping lists and that she needs to make changes and then she won’t make those changes and then she’ll be back etc etc etc. I get it, I’m SO bad at this, but I guess I’m never going to pull myself out of anything if I just don’t go into it full force. Maybe I’ve been hoping that something will happen in my life and it’ll give me a lil push to get my going–to start the journey to redemption from the depths that I’ve buried myself in. But, ok, I was wrong. Nothing is going to come around and kick me in the butt because I’m pretty sure nothing cares if I’m writing or reading or if I’m neglecting these things by laying around in my bed eating really gross store bought brownies. Ok? The only person that cares that I’m doing these things is myself so unless I start kicking myself in the butt no one and nothing else will. So here I am with the proclamation that I will start kicking myself in the butt immediately following this post. (Or tomorrow, BUT THAT’S ONLY BECAUSE I’M SICK TODAY AND I NEED TO REST SO I DON’T DIE ON BLACK FRIDAY AKA NEXT WEEKEND.)

A few nights ago, my friend texted me and asked me to send her one of my short stories so she could show her boyfriend and, of course, before sending it her way, I reread it and felt my heart hurt because it was good. It was like reading something by someone that you really liked and thinking ‘wow, I wish I would’ve thought to write it.’ Except I did write it. I wrote something and read it back and wanted to write it. And whether or not anyone else understands that or whether or not anyone else thinks it’s good enough for that feeling, I felt it. It was good and it was me and I just gave up on both those things. I gave up on my writing and I gave up on myself and I am my own worst enemy and I need to fix it. Only me. No one else.

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Weekly Whining: Maybe I Need a Confidence Boost

So I know that a majority of the posts that I write here talk about how I’m in a funk and can’t get myself out but basically would do anything to get myself out because it sucks. And this post is really no different, so let me warn you now.

Life hasn’t been bad? It’s been pretty ok, actually. I mean, minus the part about me being in a terrible rut. I just recently got promoted at work, which has been feeling bittersweet if I’m being honest (I’m being honest). I’ve worked so hard and for so long to move up in the company I work for and it’s finally happened for me. And instead of feeling overjoyed about the fact that this has happened, I feel a little underwhelmed. It’s like this is all I’ve been working for and now what? I don’t feel fulfilled and that’s never good, especially when it comes to something you’ve wanted for a year. I guess maybe it’s just a sign that retail is not my life path. That this is only a means to an end. So maybe it’s a good thing that I don’t feel satisfied? Maybe feeling satisfied means that I’ll stop trying for something more? Whether that more is within the company or whether that more is outside of the company. So maybe I shouldn’t be looking at this negatively. I should be thankful that I’m feeling unfulfilled; be thankful that I know in my heart and mind that I need to keep moving forward. I need to keep moving toward something more. (Wow, ok, I worked that out much faster writing it down than I ever could in my head because I’ve been feeling really down on myself for not being overwhelmed with excitement that this has happened in my life,)

Another positive thing in my life is that my boyfriend was visiting about a week ago (it feels like forever ago) and it was a wonderful time. But I guess even that is great and terrible. Great because I hadn’t seen him since July, but terrible because now he’s gone again and I probably won’t see him until February because working at a mall has some negative aspects aka holiday aka the time between November and January. He recently interviewed with the company that his friend works for in Houston so naturally if he gets it he’ll have to move to Houston, which works better for communication because he’ll only be an hour behind me, but also it means that he’ll still be long distance. But I told him that if he did get the job and moved down there, I would go with him. I mean, not right away, but eventually when he had his own place and I stayed a least six months at my new store/in my new position. (One of the mall’s many perks is that basically I can transfer wherever and still have a job, which is always nice to know.) But then I was getting nervous that I was turning into the girlfriend that would just follow her boyfriend around wherever he went and I definitely did not want to be that type of girlfriend. But, at the same time, I definitely am tired of being the type of girlfriend that is long distance so I guess you gotta be one to not be the other and I have to change my idea of the type of girlfriend I want to be because I never thought I’d be in this situation. (Although I did always want to be in this situation.) So fingers crossed he gets the job in Houston and, if not, fingers crossed he gets a job anywhere because I just worry about him sitting over there feeling down on himself because he’s not working and doesn’t have money to do much of anything.

Ok, but now I’m going to talk about my real problem in my life right now and that’s my lack of focus on basically everything. I’ve been reading more often as of lately, but not enough to be like “Wow I’m reading so much again!” I can start a book and I can usually get pretty deep into it and then I’ll have one bad day and I revert back to my old habits of sitting around all day doing absolutely nothing productive and that one bad day will cause me continue doing absolutely nothing for basically weeks until I write a post about how terrible I am and then I’ll start up again. But the cycle never ends. This is an ongoing problem. And I never realized the power that one bad day had over me and that’s an issue. I’ve basically stopped writing altogether, whether it’s in my journal or creatively and that’s awful because that’s all I’ve ever wanted to do with my life. My reading habits are on and off. I don’t play my piano. I haven’t exercised in a month. Things are bad. I know once I get myself into a routine, it’ll be easier to keep that routine. And I know that it should be easy to just get myself into a routine because I’m here telling you all how terrible it feels to be this terrible, but it just doesn’t feel that easy. It feels so difficult to pull myself out of this rut. Someone please help me or I’ll be doomed for eternity, probably.

A Goodbye (Two Years in the Making)

I remember the day you passed. October 15th, 2012. It was a Monday. My mom’s birthday. I was snoozing through alarms, lazy to get up for school. Creaks on the staircase. “You should come upstairs. Grandpa’s not doing great,” dad says and I stay in bed a few extra minutes, bracing for something I hoped would never come. Finally on the main floor of my house and I hear my mom cry. “No!” she yells. It was something straight from a dramatic movie or television show. I get upstairs to the second floor, but that’s all I’m able to do. My legs start shaking and I feel like I’m going to be sick. Attention turns to me because I cannot hold myself up and I cannot see a thing and I cannot hear a thing because all I can think about is that this is all a dream. I make myself sick for the week that follows. I don’t leave the couch which becomes my new bed–the living room my new bedroom for at least a month that follows. I knew in the moment I heard my mom yell into the phone in the bathroom that morning that part of me was gone. The biggest part. And everyday I come to accept that I will never get that part back and I will never be the same. Changed forever by all the love before that day and all the days that follow after that day.

I want to write about you all the time and also never at all. The challenge comes from not only the hurt that surfaces, but also the lack of things to say. Not that you didn’t provide a number of stories to retell or an endless amount of love that I can share. There are just no words good enough for all the love I have for you in my heart. I tell everyone that the capitol of Bulgaria is named after your family anytime Bulgaria is brought up in a conversation (which is not very often, but sometimes I’ll bring it up anyway). We joke all the time about your dad naming you Pasquale. My mom never believed that story until she found your birth certificate and realized it was true. You were such an elaborate story teller and now I wonder if they were all stories from your life. Stories from your past that I will never be able to ask you about. It’s only now that you’re gone that I wish I had asked you more questions and listened to more stories. I knew you for 21 years and yet I feel like I didn’t know you enough.

A lot of the time I spend writing about you, I come to a long winded sentiment hoping that you are proud of everything I’m doing and everything I’m becoming. I wish there was a universally accepted sign from people who have left us that lets us all know that we’re doing ok–that we’re doing enough. I often feel like I’m letting you down. That I should be doing more of what I love and less of what I need to be doing. I imagine you thinking I don’t play the piano enough or write enough, but so often it reminds me of you and then I am back here wondering what I could be doing to make you proud of me. To make me half the human that you were.

It feels odd, now, visiting your house or calling grandma on the phone. And I feel like a really terrible person and granddaughter because I think deep down in my heart, I loved you more. More than everyone, to be honest, and so nothing feels quite right about a lot of things. The house is not the same, the conversation is not the same, the longing to return is not the same. You are my light and without you here everything seems lackluster.

Some days, it feels like we’ve been apart for a day. And others it feels like we’ve been apart 20 years. I can still hear your voice in my head, see your face when I close my eyes. Your scent lingers in the air and I wish for one more day it could all be real again. I love you and I miss you with my entire being, grandpa.

Sunday Book Club: The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, John Boyne

Much like Holes, I watched this movie way before I even thought about reading the book. But it’s set in my favorite time period of history (ok, this makes me sound like I love the Holocaust and WWII and Nazis, but I don’t. I just never have really been interested in history, but I’ve always been interested in learning about and reading literature from this period) and so I knew at some point in my young life I would come to read it. And now I have. It’s hard really to judge it, because I think I might have liked the movie better. I think you felt more with the movie and seeing it happen. I didn’t feel enough when it came to the actual text and words and characters. I’m not sure why. Maybe it was the way it was written? Or maybe it’s that I had already seen the movie and felt enough about the storyline. Who’s to know, really.

When I say that I didn’t love the way it was actually written, I mean that it seemed very choppy. I know the story was being told following this young boy during this weird and confusing time for young kids, but it just seemed very disconnected from the reader. Maybe it was just me. Maybe I’m crazy and weird, ok, but you all knew that already. I felt very far away from the relationship between the two boys and I wanted to feel like I was right there with them. That’s why I think it was the writing and not the story itself because at it’s core it’s a powerful story, but at the end of the day, I did not feel moved by the way it was told.

My biggest problem with the whole text was the ending. (Yes, here I go again, another problem with another ending because I have problems with my own endings so it’s only fair that I have problems with everyone else’s endings, too.) Here’s my problem: little Bruno goes missing and literally (yes, “literally”) no one seems as panicked as I was. And the dad kind of realizes that his son snuck under the fence to this terrible concentration camp and he doesn’t like freak out or kill himself or nothing dramatic that I hoped for. AND THEN after they realize this terrible thing happened to their ONLY SON, the book ends with saying they never saw Bruno and nothing like that happened again and the end. What? What even ending is that? That is not the way you end a book about two boys living during the Holocaust who befriend each other and then THE GERMAN BOY SNEAKS INTO THE CONCENTRATION CAMP AND IS KILLED VIA GAS, OK. That’s just not how you do it. I don’t have an alternative ending to this whole thing like I did for The Giver, but I can tell you, John Boyne, that this wasn’t the best way to do it. (What do I know? I’m sorry John Boyne, but you needed to know how I felt.) The movie ends with this panic throughout the household. And the father realizes what his son has done and gets into the camp to try to find Bruno. Upon learning that the camp was sent to the gas chambers, he tries to get there in time to stop them to find his son and he’s too late and it’s the first time you really feel something from the father. The whole time he was this mean, prideful, stereotypical Nazi soldier and here you see him as a father concerned that his work has torn his family apart and taken his only son and he knows it’s his fault for bringing them here. It’s his fault and you see it on his face that he knows. But it’s too late.

Sunday Book Club: Holes, Louis Sachar

Holes was one of those books that I was supposed to read in seventh grade. (Wait, quick side story: I was trying to figure out when I had actually been assigned the book and went on a complete search for every teacher I ever had in middle school because I couldn’t figure out who my eighth grade English teacher was. So I found a rate my professor for, like, middle school(?) and was going through the list to find anyone that sounded familiar. I ended up not finding my English teacher so thankfully one of my close friends remembered who it was, but I did come across my eighth grade science teacher who was very attractive and remains very attractive so I tried to find him on linkedin and it just didn’t work out so I’m kinda bummed tbh.) Ok, so anyway, Holes was one of those books that I was supposed to read in seventh grade. And I know you’re probably all wondering why I said “supposed to” instead of just “I read that book” and it’s because I had been assigned the book and I didn’t read it. I’m not a bad student. I’m actually a really good student. And I liked homework. So it was nothing like “rebellious Sarah didn’t do the homework again.” It was more like “my teacher was a drunk so I didn’t do the assignment because it wouldn’t have mattered anyway.” 

Yes, that’s what I said. I’ll tell you the story of cranky ole Ms. Booze (obviously not her name but I won’t say the real one on here in case she finds this and seeks revenge). Anyway, Ms. Booze was a weird lady in that she was always drunk. Or, at least, for most of the year, we just assumed she was drunk. We basically did nothing and she believed we did everything and I’m sure we all got A’s that year. (See so this is why I didn’t read because she had no idea what was going on so I didn’t want to put effort into something that she wouldn’t have cared about, ok.) So we all just slacked off assuming our teacher was a drunk and then one day it turned out that she was actually a drunk and we were all super geniuses. (Well not all of us, Ramsay took a peek in her desk when she went to the copy room and found bottles and maybe told someone?) Ok but what happened next is a real crazy time. I had stayed home one day from school because my mom said it was cool so I went to the mall with her instead. And when we got to the school to pick up my sister we heard sirens and there were police cars everywhere. When I got back home, I had a thousand IMs (yes, back when AIM was a thing) from my friends telling me to turn on the news. So, naturally, I did. Turns out Ms Booze was getting arrested because of her intoxication, but before they caught her she had jumped into the car of a parent (who’s daughter I was friends with so that was super awkward for her) and told this parent she was having a heart attack. So the parent began to drive to the hospital because this teacher is having a heart attack, you know. Anyway, the woman driving ended up hitting a cop with her car and they were both arrested. 

And that’s why I didn’t read Holes in the seventh grade.

But now that I’ve read it, I don’t have much to say because I watch the movie a lot so I see how it’s different but basically I just imagined Shia LaBeouf digging holes the whole time and it was just really distracting. 

Sunday Book Club: The Giver, Lois Lowry

With all the hype over The Giver as a movie, I decided I should reread it. Mostly because I saw the previews for the movie and I couldn’t help but think that the book was definitely not that sci-fi. Like, ok, futuristic, but not sci-fi. Maybe I’m viewing the previews in some kind of way, but it looks like nothing I imagined. So, I reread it to make sure that I just hadn’t forgotten all the cool sci-fi parts and discovered that I didn’t forget anything and I imagine the book the same and the movie is wrong. 

I first read The Giver in the sixth grade because I think that’s when a lot of people like to teach it??? Anyway, I really liked it. I mean, ok, I didn’t really like it, but I liked it enough to remember about it. And I liked it enough to write a sequel for it. Let me explain: in sixth grade we read The Giver and then were asked to do a project on it because that’s what you do in the sixth grade. One of the projects you could do for the book was to write a sequel. But who wants to do that when you could easily just make a poster about Jonas’s eye color? (I don’t think that was a real thing.) Well, I’ll tell you who wants to write a sequel for a book: me. Not that the actual book is that long and, I mean, my sequel was definitely not even close to being 179 pages, but you know, I wrote a sequel because I guess I hated how the book ended. And, after reading it again, I’ve decided that I STILL hate how this book ends. But I won’t start at the ending, ok?

The book follows this kind of futuristic city in which everything is decided for everyone and no one questions it and no one thinks it sucks because that’s all they’ve ever known. Basically everyone is a robot and that’s that. (Not so dramatic, but almost.) Here’s the major difference between my mind’s movie and the actual movie because the actual movie makes it seem super future, like drones and cool haircuts. I was imagining everyone kind of woodsy. Like almost Zelda and the Ocarina of Time, but not quite. WAIT I GOT IT. Almost like Dark Cloud, but not the original village you live in, the village you go to help rebuild after you rebuild your own. And they live in the woods and some people live in tree houses and one guy lives in a mushroom and I know they’re mostly wearing animal skins but that’s essentially what I imagined even now. Are we seeing it yet? I know they’re supposed to be a cool advanced community, but I still imagined them very old. So maybe I’m just wrong, maybe the rest of you think I’m crazy. 

Anyway, I can’t really get my mind off talking about the ending so I’m going to do it because I think that’s where most of my review lies. Ok so I have no real problem with the plot or the characters or even the development, BUT I DO HAVE A PROBLEM WITH THE ENDING. I think it ends so fast and so annoyingly. I’ve been trying to figure out what exactly I didn’t like about it, but I can’t really put my finger on it. The only thing I could come up with was maybe the framing of the story didn’t work for me??? Hear me out. We had this really lengthy first 3/4 of the book. We were introduced to the community, the characters, the way they do things. We saw the different ceremonies and learned how those worked and we were able to sit in on a few of the sessions that Jonas had with The Giver. But I just feel like after five sessions, Jonas is up and ready to run away and change the world and The Giver is like “to hell with it” and goes along with it. Ok, I know the sessions span the course of a year, I think, but it doesn’t feel like that. It feels like one random Tuesday, Jonas shows up and is like WOW THIS PLACE SUCKS and The Giver is like “yep” and the next day Jonas is kidnapping Gabe and running away forever. What is that? And then they’re running away and it is basically the most boring part of the entire book. Ok, the insertion of the small memories and the idea that the memories are fading and returning to the community, fine. Ok. And even the reality of the memory with the sled in the snow, cool. I get it. But oh my goodness please end because I can’t take any more of it. And in reality, the last part of the book was maybe twenty pages and I hated it. I am so dramatic but I just feel like the framing of the story overall needed to be stronger. I can’t even remember the ending that well and I read it last week. I don’t think it ended on a strong enough point. I don’t care where Jonas ended up or what happens to him or the community, but also I feel like Lowry needed it to end strong enough where you know you’ll never know and you’re ok with that. You remember what he went through and accept it as the ending. I can’t accept this, I just can’t do it. 

Ok, what SHOULD happen (or, at least, what happens in my head because I can’t remember the exact sequel that I wrote but I’m sure it’s similar because I don’t change my mind about things) is that Jonas should maybe run into a family and it should be the exact world that Lily describes. They should all have twins. And Jonas meets his twin, but he’s too weak and basically dies, but Gabe lives with this family that would’ve been his had there not been the rule against more than two kids. I mean, ok, granted there’s another Gabe living in this new community, but he’s with a different family. You know what I’m saying? But this new family with this new Lily and new Jonas take him in and ugh it would be perfect. I’m writing this sequel again. 

Friends

Recently I have been notified that I now have 100 followers on this site and, while I’m sure all of you have many more than 100 followers on this site, I’m going to make a huge deal out of it because this is great. So thanks, new friends, for constantly subjecting yourself to my whining and terribly constructed book reviews. We are now bonded for life and you are stuck with me and that’s just how it’s going to be from now till eternity.