I Couldn’t Think Of A Title For This. Sorry.

This post is veering from my original intention for it, but I’m going to toss in some stuff that didn’t make it into my first post, so maybe my original idea for this one will get posted at some point (it was a really funny allegory, at least I thought so. Then again, I came up with it during a bout of my traditional post-migraine euphoria where everything seems amazing and awesome and wonderful, so I don’t totally trust my judgement.)

So, more stream-of-consciousness from the wild river of my mind. Ever since the new year began, I’ve been trying to get my life better organized. Since I work retail, during the Christmas season laundry/cleaning/dishes/etc. built up, and now I’m doing the fun task of trying to catch up on all of it. Yay! I’m also doing battle with an evil mouse that has invaded my apartment. It’s some kind of evil genius and has figured out how to eat the peanut butter off the first two kinds of traps I set without getting killed. I will be deploying the fearsome glue trap tomorrow.

Anyway, I’ve been working on all of this while continuing to work as many hours as I was during the Christmas season, and doing lots of little chores day after day. Obviously, there’s not a whole lot of improvement from any one thing. So my life recently has been kind of like, “Yay! I made it through another eight hour shift! I went grocery shopping! I’m sticking to my budget! I brought my lunch! I did the dishes! I’m building so much character and perseverance! Yay!” and “No, you don’t need to buy that Rolling Stone magazine, it’s not worth spending $4.99 just so you can read the interview with Stevie Nicks, at which point you’ll probably either toss it, or more likely, leave it sitting around until you lose it, and then find it two years later all crumpled-up and gross-looking. Also, you don’t need to buy that chocolate mousse either. It’s $3.50 and you already had a cookie today. Go home and eat some fruit.”

(I want my “Adulthood Trophy” as the brilliant Allie Brosch put it in Hyperbole and a Half.)

After several weeks, it’s been finally getting to me. The blog post I wrote last week helped- I got in touch with a bunch of people I hadn’t talked to in a while, which reminded me I wasn’t just some kind of productivity machine. Then yesterday, one of my supervisors at work mentioned that they were thinking of training me to advance to the next level, and he asked if I would be interested in that. I said yes, so hopefully that works out. Anyway, that helped some, but I’m still feeling like each day is the same.

I’ve learned that this means that I need to add more joy to my life, because otherwise I start unconsciously imitating the writer of Ecclesiastes and being like “Life is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.” At which point I become a hermit and hole up in my hermit cave. So that’s partly why I’m trying to do all this organizing, so I’m prepared to move out fairly soon and find some place with more windows, no mice, and that allows cats. I’m MUCH happier when I have a feline overlord to serve.

I’ve not been having much luck though. A friend of mine and I were planning to go to a Fleetwood Mac concert, but the cheapest seats they had were $60 a piece, so it wasn’t really affordable for either of us (Side Note to Fleetwood Mac: Why are your tickets so expensive?!?! Aren’t you already really rich?) Hopefully I can think of something else soon that’ll actually end up working. Right now I’m gradually working through all the Diane Keaton movies that the public library has, but I feel like I need something with more sense of adventure. I’m feeling like the narrator of “Thunder Road” (which is an amazing and brilliant song that you should totally listen to). Anyway, this post is kind of all over the place, (and much less profound than I had hoped it would be) but I needed to get this off my chest. As always, feedback/communication of any kind is appreciated!

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What Do I Really Want Out of Life?

It’s time for another rambling post on what I want out of life, spurred on by my visit to Truman this weekend.  My friends keep asking me what I’m going to major in, and I keep telling them I’ve decided to stay with computer science.  I’m not exactly passionate about it, but it’ll get me a good job until I figure out what I really want to do.  I do like Web design though, so maybe I’ll go into that.  I just wish I had the kind of consuming interest that some of my friends have towards their fields of study.

Growing up, I never expected to really like my life.  I know that sounds weird, but I thought I was just being mature and realistic.  I figured I’d probably become an engineer since I was good at math and science.  It wasn’t so much that I wanted to be an engineer, I just sort of felt that I “should” become one, like it was my duty to society or something.  (Explanation: My senior year in high school, I was finally diagnosed with depression, then prescribed antidepressants.  They have made a world of difference in my life.  Given the incredible transformation my personality underwent, I suspect that my brain chemistry was slightly off from birth, creating a persistent, fluctuating state of depression.  When you combine this with some difficulties at home, plus a somewhat legalistic religious upbringing, you can better understand how I would have come to hold such a view).

Somewhat as a result of that, I’ve never really found my “niche.”  For a long time, my dream job (which I obviously never thought I’d be able to get) was to be Secretary of State.  Then I read a biography of Madeleine Albright and found out what the job really entailed.  I had been under the impression that it consisted of me studying foreign policy, coming to informed decisions that improve life for Americans and for those around the globe, and then going around the world to meet with leaders, discuss important issues, and sign treaties.  Instead, I found out that it involves a lot of political schmoozing, plus the people who actually do the vast majority of the research are State Department underlings.  Realpolitik considerations often curtail which policies you’re actually allowed to support.  Your success is largely determined by how well you curry favor with those in power (or on their way to it).

That seemed really superficial to me.  Not to mention it totally doesn’t fit my personality at all.  Even being a research underling doesn’t fit me, since I have the attention span of a gnat when it comes to writing papers, etc.  I thought about becoming a professor or something, but I’m REALLY burnt out of school, and plus it’s so hard to get one of those jobs anyway.

More than anything, right now I just want to finish school.  Currently, I have three semesters to go, so I should graduate in December 2014.  I’ve given up on finding anything I’m passionate about before then.  Afterwards, I might be able to find a job in Web design that I’d like, although I’m thinking about getting a job as a pharmacy tech instead since I’ll have my certification by then.  It’s mildly interesting, and it would allow me to support myself.  Honestly, at this point, I just want to quit trying to be the academic superstar and get on with my life.  As long as a job would allow me to do that, I’m okay with anything that’s legal, moral, and ethical.  I’m sick of trying to find the perfect job that will magically give me a purpose in life.

I’ve been thinking a lot about what I said in one of my earlier posts, about how I could never see myself as a stay-at-home mom.  However, this hasn’t stopped me from going through a recent spate of baby name fever (I apologize if I’ve tortured anyone with my long discussions of the pros and cons of various names).  The more I think about it, the more I can see myself as a SAHM.  Obviously, that’s not exactly something I can set up a five or ten year plan for.  I don’t even know if I’ll still want to do it if/by the time I marry and have kids.  All I’m saying is that the idea is no longer totally repugnant to me, now that I’ve seen that having kids doesn’t have to stress you out all the time.  I think there’s so much pressure in American society today to achieve, and I feel like raising kids could be much more enjoyable if parents resisted it (at least to some degree).

Anyway, I guess the point is that I’m officially declaring that I would like to have kids someday, God willing.  (The five-year-old me who was extremely anti-domestic and refused to play “House” or dolls is off laughing somewhere at that, I’ve no doubt).  I’m trying not to obsess about it since a lot of factors that lead into that decision, like marriage, etc. are out of my control, at least to some degree.  However, it is nice to know that I do still have some goals in life, even if they’re not exactly the ones I came to college with.  Still, it probably wouldn’t hurt to go home and reread The Feminine Mystique and de-romanticize my view of motherhood a little bit.

How to Spend My Semester Off

I’m starting to die of boredom.  Even though I’m taking a couple classes at Kirkwood, I still have a lot of time on my hands (cue Styx’s “Too Much Time On My Hands”).  I’ve tried all the usual things like cleaning my room and doing a long-overdue purging of my book collection.  And as you, my readers, know, I’ve started this blog!  So I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions for other ways to constructively use my exile.

I’m thinking about starting to practice the piano again for half an hour a day.  Other than that, I don’t really have any specific goals.  I guess now would be a good time to read “Les Miserables” and cross that off my bucket list (the fifth time’s the charm!).  All I know is that I feel like I’m just spinning my wheels here, and it’s slowly driving me crazy!