Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Lack of Time, or There's a Reason this Rant is Short.

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           It’s just one of those moments that I need to rant for a bit.  I should be reading right now.  Like 200 pages worth of reading, but can’t seem to convince myself to pick up the damned book.  Not that it isn’t good.  I just haven’t had time and I’ve been getting discouraged when I DO have time.

                I realize why I came back to school, and understand the importance in being here, and yes I’m enjoying the challenge of it at times….  But then, some of the challenge is in all of the wrong places.  For example, I seem to understand all of the information the teachers are giving us, but don’t seem to understand the 50 different formats that they want us to respond through.  I understand WWII but don’t understand how to insert and utilize “footnotes” when composing my response….   I understand art, but don’t understand why we are being taught Plato in an art class….  I know how to write an persuasive essay, but don’t understand why you are making me dumb down my writing style to a generic high school level.

I also realize that just starting out again, I have to get all of these cruddy “basic” classes out of the way that, let’s face it, are just “review” for the fresh out of high school students.  And to ease the non-traditionals in.  I have to have patience.  But meanwhile it feels like I came here to find knowledge and inspiration do something great with my life, and thus far, all it’s REALLY done is inspire and frustrate me, simply for the fact that I don’t have enough time to accomplish half of the things it’s inspired me for.

Example: With all I’ve reviewed and the new angles I’ve learned to utilize to look at politics and history, as well as the applications from my Individual and Society class, I have a GREAT short story I REALLY think would be successful and hard hitting.  …….And with the exception of my ONE blog post, (aside from this 10 minute jaunt) I have Zilch down on paper.  For SO long, before coming here, I lacked inspiration to write.  I wanted to want to.  I had ideas to use.  But I didn’t have that special “fire” to move my pen to.  That PASSION behind the words that kept me interested enough to know that my readers would be interested as well.

But worse, I’m falling behind.  I have SO much reading to get done, essays, performances, speeches….  And now work has increased the number of hours that they need me.  …clean clothes may become a problem, though I did have a friend offer by way of casual conversation last night to come do my laundry for me after hearing my predicament.  (Thanks Ken.)  :P

The good news is, at least I LIKE this job for the moment.  I’m a fracking ROCK STAR there.  Now that I’m actually working IN the bakery department I’m respected, looked up to, and basically running the show until the supervisor gets things a little more underway.  I have every faith she’s going to be a great supervisor BTW.  Right now, we’re just in the set up phase, but it made me realize all the more, “I could do this.”  I could TOTALLY open my own bakery, have it be a smashing success, and hardly break a sweat over it.  I have the organizational, inventory, and routine skills, down!

The issue is really just TIME.  Speaking of which, time to read, and get to writing that paragraph or so before morning.  Goodnight all!

Sunday, November 6, 2011


(remember to click a sponsor please....  pretty please?  I'd like to put myself through college with writing rather than stripping.)

I’ve been trying to work on several posts, mostly about school, and decided to split what I had to say into categories of my experiences in each class.  Those will follow soon, I promise.  The bit I will be ranting about my World of the Arts course will be extensive, I assure you.  But right now, I need to take a break from the whole school topic and talk about just life in general and how much can be summed up in just my experiences as they relate to "Yesterday."

There are a couple of friends I haven’t seen in quite some time.  And my voice is actually feeling a bit rough today after all the talking necessary in catching up with each other.  There are some people in life that no matter how long you go without seeing one another, you can just pick right back up where you left off.  I find this to be rare.  Most people, having moved so many times and experienced the distance makes the heart grow…  well, in different directions at least…  I realize that when you have a friend or two that keep that same bond you shared no matter the interruption in the time space continuum, they are to be cherished.  But perhaps I’m getting ahead of myself.  Let’s start with what led IN to yesterday.

Extra excited about getting to see my friends Torin and Heather and not wanting to let anything get in the way, I prepared by getting a jump on my chores the evening before—namely, a midterm essay and laundry.  I must have the WORST luck in the world when it comes to dryers.  Because after having the broken dryer in my old apartment, the two in my new apartment building are each broken in different ways.  The one on the left heats up but doesn’t spin, and the one on the right spins but doesn’t really heat up.  So I washed my clothes and then proceeded to hang them around my apartment to dry, flipping and rotating them as needed through the night so they would dry evenly and with as few wrinkles as possible.  While tending to this I was also working on my essay and falling asleep between paragraphs, and waking to bizarre nightmares that I no longer remember the details of.  I finally uploaded the homework at five in the morning, and turned out the lights allowing a total of about 3 and a half hours of actual sleep.  I got up, ready to meet with my friends and do some hiking in the Kettle Moraine.

It is beautiful up there.  Exactly how my mind envisioned it.  NOT exactly how my legs envisioned it.  Somehow, the signals never conflicted and thinking about how beautiful the hills would be kept the enthusiasm for the experience SO high that I never thought twice about how tedious CLIMBING those hills could be.  The embarrassing part was the repeated action of getting passed by retired senior couples out for an afternoon stroll.  I give them credit for their amazing pace and stamina.  I definitely need to up the gym hours.  The exercise was well worth it, of course; all three and a half miles were charming, peaceful, and full of autumnal leaf-crunching goodness.  The weather was clear and perfect, and our packed lunches were a fantastic touch.

From One Park to Another.

After the State Park, it was time to get ready for Dog Park.  A new musical show that I had several of my closest friends in or involved with.  I met up with two of these friends before the show for some dinner and relaxation.  (And of course to change and freshen up after sweating down the trails.)  Having to be at theater plenty early to don their doggy makeup I was made welcome to stay at their place to follow them after a while.  A truly awesome gesture.  But something odd happened just a few moments after they left.

Maybe it was the lack of sleep.  Maybe the physical exertion.  Maybe the tall glass of soda I just drank.  Maybe a combination of all.  But I doubt it.  Settling in, with Netflix to keep me company for the next hour, I suddenly couldn’t breathe.  Oh, air was plenty accessible.  I wasn’t congested.  I just felt like all of the oxygen had been sucked out of the room.  Like I was forced into the vacuum of space and there was nothing left to supply my lungs.  And that’s when I realized my throat felt funny.  A thudding was present.  Was I having a heart attack?  Did I have a blood clot?  A stroke?  I was alone…  should I call someone for help?  My mind was reeling.  Until I realized…  I’ve had this before.  Something about this was vaguely familiar.  Decades ago familiar, and albeit rare.  To help me cope with my parent’s car accident and all of the stresses and responsibilities it left me as a teen ager, I had been put on an antidepressant.  One of the side effects of that medication was “panic attacks.”

All at once I knew what was wrong, why it was happening, and what to do.  I immediately calmed my mind, lowered the volume on the TV and went to work on meditation and controlled breathing exercises.  It’s amazing how we can tune out our own feelings on something to such a point that we don’t realize just how badly a situation is affecting us until too late.  It took about ten minutes for it to pass—typical of a panic attack even with the meditation, but the meditation helped me cope until it waned.

I knew what was bothering me.  …him.  As vague as that is, and as much as I try to not allow social situations trouble me or obstruct me from the things I want, it was clear, now more than ever, just how much this person still affects me, and now in a very ultimately negative way.  I didn’t want to see him.  That was not going to stop me from seeing my other friends…  But I didn’t want to see him.  More so, I didn’t want him to see me.  I didn’t want yet another instance of my good intentions being used against me.  Past experience has proven that no matter what I do, in his eyes EVERYTHING I ever do, is about him.  Every time I allowed him to rant to me, and every kind word I ever spoke to him in friendship, made me “obsessed” and “crazy.”  Every time I tried to be polite, I was “childish” or “immature.”  Every time we crossed paths, despite the small community in which we lived and more than 40 mutual friends and similar interests, I was “stalking” him.  I knew there was potential of my audacious act in supporting my other friends to be translated once again to me “stalking” him.  And apparently that was enough to induce a heart rate that thumped in my neck so hard that it felt as though I was choking on a live hummingbird.

At any rate, the show was very cute, and the ending pulled on my heartstrings to such an extent that (embarrassing as it is to admit) brought a tear to my eye.  Honestly, I was afraid that would be seen, and spur another panic attack for how THAT would be translated and misconstrued.

I left the theater thinking about a great SWELL of different things.  What’s happened in the past.  What’s happened recently.  Friendships.  Long distance friendships.  Falling outs.  Doctor visits.  School.  The Deer I almost hit in the middle of town on my way to the theater...  And I felt an unbelievable need for a drink.  I hugged Amber and Jeremiah goodbye in case they couldn’t make it out to Elkhorn and headed to karaoke for a night of camaraderie and support of my friends, assured a safe ride to, and a warm bed at, Daisy’s.

The most obscure Karaoke experience ever.

I was apparently not the only one having a bit on their mind that night.  Fortunately this helped me “blend” a bit as I went with the intentions of cutting loose all that was weighing me down.


I succeeded.

No, I was not passed out from alcohol.  See the bunny ears I'm holding up?  After feeling badly about thwarting a friends attempt at giving them to me by NOT being asleep....  I had to make amends by performing the act myself.  But due to daylight savings it is now 3 in the morning, after an unexpectedly emotionally draining day, which followed a strenuous 3 mile nature hike, which was accomplished on 3 hours of sleep.  But sleep came easier than I think it would have otherwise, and thankfully dreamless for the most part.  Again, I’m not sure just what nightmares I’ve been having lately, but it seems accurate to say that it usually involves getting stabbed or cut by a knife for some reason.  I’ll translate them better when I get in enough sleep to actually remember.  For now, sleep is calling once again.