Monday, September 30, 2013

The day I realized I was turning into my parent

How did you react the day you realized you were turning into your parent? 

I had a very happy childhood, no complaints.  I think my parents did a wonderful job raising their family...then and now.  We are still all very close, we get along well and there have not been any major issues with any of us.  Whatever their parenting skills are, for the most part they got it right and I aspire to raise my children half as well as they have raised theirs.

Speaking of children, people say that they are turning into their mother or father - because of something they do or say to their children that their parents said/did to them.

I do not have children and I am afraid I am already turning into my mother.  When I said "afraid' it isn't because she is horrible...she is unbelievably nice and I wish to become more like her...but I am not ready for that.  When I lived with my parents last year, I realized that I get my compassion and ability to love from my mother.  Such very wonderful qualities.  I have been this way for a while, that I care so deeply for someone that I want to do whatever is in my power to make them happy.

Friday, September 27, 2013


Some people wonder why our society is the way it is, with children and adults having this crazy sense of entitlement. 

It is reasons like this car sticker - princess on board - that, for me answers part of this question. 

Parents who pamper their children raise children who think everything should be handed to them.  They seem to not take any accountability for their actions and complain about everything - but are not willing to step up when needed.

OK, so I don't have children - but I did work in a school for 4 years or so. I have also been a part of society and have seen first hand the insanity people think they can get away with...and for the most part, they do because others aren't willing to argue because they don't want to deal with crazy people's repercussions.

There are times I do speak up because it annoys the hell out of me that people leave their garbage on the train, that they think it is OK to talk on their phone and carry on a full, loud conversation when in a public place, tickle their child on a commuter train who squeals really loud for 40 minutes, think they should pass a test because they only failed by one point, or double park causing massive traffic buildup instead of parking in a parking spot.  Why do you think you can do this, but I can't?  Why do you honk and flip the bird when other people do the same thing you do?

Going back to the sticker, a princess is royalty, and maybe in your household, your daughter does rule the home...because you allowed it.  When the child dictates schedules or menus there is a problem. When parents constantly give in to their child because it is easier, it is a problem.  That teaches the child that they can have whatever they want - and later in life, they will not understand why this can't be.

We aren't teaching children how to be a graceful losers, understand consequences of their actions, or about not being a bully, and in turn, we see these sad stories about kids throwing shopping carts over an overpass, killing their classmates, gang rape, teen pregnancy and drug addiction.

Many parents are busy working jobs to support their families, teachers are no longer allowed to discipline - so some kids are cruising around knowing they can probably get into shenanigans.  Helping the community kids is so important, we all need to find ways to be a better example.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Why I Chose My University Degree

I am envious of all the people that know what career they want to go into when they are young.  I struggled with what I wanted to do, how was I to really know what each job would entail?  In high school I considered becoming a doctor, a medical technician, a lawyer, an accountant and a teacher.  All very respectable professions.  When the time came to look at colleges, you had to know what you want to do to be sure the school offered that program.  When I looked at colleges, I made my decision on the feel I got from the campus.  I fell in love with the grounds and the buildings.  Then I looked to see what they offered and thought, OK those classes sound great.

During my first year of college I realized how much I loved science and math.  I decided I wanted to go into forensic science (this was before CSI), and that was only offered at like 6 schools in the country at the time.  I decided to transfer out to attend one of those colleges and began my studies.  I struggled in calc 2 because I couldn't understand my professor and I struggled in physics.  I loved biology and chemistry but spending all day in front of a microscope started to worry me.  I didn't know what the everyday job responsibilities of a forensic scientist would be, but I worried I'd get bored.  I started to wonder if I needed to change degrees.  I did, I took the easy way out and finished up the following semester with a criminal justice degree knowing full well I would probably not use it.  That is a decision I've regretted quite a bit over the years, I should have stuck it out and got the science degree.

A few years later I decided I needed to further my education because I was at a dead end.  I constantly saw accounting jobs listed and figured there was a huge need for this, so I enrolled in a college that had an exceptional accounting program.  I hated it.  But I was already immersed in the program so I took a few other classes and changed my major to strategic management - a very broad degree, but one that I did very well in understanding the concepts.

When I graduated, I was not really sure what my options were. I fell into my job and they did not pay me a graduate degree salary, but one more of a recent undergrad with no experience - which was somewhat true.  The college debt is massive and I've struggled to determine if it was really worth it.  I obtained my second job based on my experience, not because of my degree.  I am on the super slow extended plan to pay off the debt, which means I'll end up paying like 4 times what the original loan was...but who has that kind of extra money, especially when our salaries allow for us to barely pay rent/food/commuting costs?

Monday, September 23, 2013

changed me

People keep saying that you can't change people.  I am not sure I agree.  I am not talking about the socks your partner doesn't pick up off the floor or the way someone chews, I am talking about something deeper.

I look back at who I was 10 years ago and I look at me now; I am sort of the same person but I am different (overlooking the normal physical changes of aging).  I am who I am now because of the life experiences and people who have impacted me over those years.  If it weren't for those specific people and the situations we had together, I would be someone else.

Those people may not have intentionally tried to change me, but unknowingly they have.  Don't get me wrong, I am happy with the person I've become.  I am just not sure I would be who I am if it wasn't for those people.  My personality is a little more serious than it was, even though I still have a great fun side; it just takes the right person to bring it out. My trust level and fear of commitment has increased as well.  And I know I doubt myself a lot more now than I did then.  Why? Because when you are lied to, mislead and taken advantage of over and over, it makes you question who you are and you try to correct it so it doesn't keep happening...and therefore you try to change yourself because of those people.

I hate that I have been less confident and insecure; it is playing a toll on me.  I've done a lot of internal work to bring this back up to 'normal'; it has been a very slow progression, and I am way better than before, but not at a place I want to be.  

Friday, September 20, 2013

explaining singlehood to kids

I have brought a new type of person to into my nieces and nephews world.  The single adult woman.

The kids have been fortunate to live in a happy bubble.  They didn't know many divorced couples, maybe a few single mom's of their friends but for the most part my extended family and friends have all been in long lasting relationships.  All the married couples had children, and the children were still young enough to live at home.

And then I found myself single at 26 and had to move back home until I figured things out.  The kids were little and couldn't comprehend this concept.  Why was an adult living with their parents?

Every time they saw me, which was often, they would ask me why I wasn't married? Why was I living with my parents? What happened to that guy that I used to live with and came over for holidays?  Why was I an adult but didn't have children?

For a long time these questions would make me cry.  I didn't have answers for them.  I didn't want to be a single adult living with my parents. I wanted children.  I wanted to be married.  I was constantly in a position when I had to explain things to them, how not everyone is lucky enough to find love, that not everyone has children, that not everyone is happily married, and that not everyone who has children is married.  It didn't stop the questions, and all the other questions from my responses. And so every time I saw them, I was left explaining that life isn't perfect.  All the explanations would make me more sad because the feelings were still so raw they hurt.  How can you move on and be happy when you are constantly answering questions about why someone left you and didn't love you anymore, about what was wrong with you, and how come you can't find another boyfriend/husband.

Most of these conversations took place in front of my sisters and they never chimed in.  They allowed their children to ask me questions and continue to torment me for about a year, maybe more.  Eventually my cousin got divorced and the kids continued asking me questions as well as asking my cousin what happened to her husband. It wasn't fair for my cousin; I could handle the kids asking me, since I was more related to them, but she shouldn't have been subjected to that line of inquisition and neither should her small child.  Finally I asked my sisters to have a conversation with their kids to explain that not all adults are in these 'normal' relationships and to be accepting of these new kids of relationships, and to not ask the person going through a transition so many questions.

The questions did start to slow down, but they never went away.  Even now, 7 years later, they are still mystified that I do not have a husband or children.  They constantly ask me why I can't just get one.  If they see me talking to a guy, they assume he is my boyfriend and won't drop it for months.  They tease me about being single and how I can't get a husband.

But, one niece last year said she wanted to be just like me, not having parents or a husband to listen to, to be free to do whatever I want.  I was happy that she was starting to understand that women can be independent and have a single life.

The constant reminder of my relationship failure has been a very difficult struggle, but I guess that I grew from it.  All the explanations and justifications for the way I lived helped to remind me that it is OK, even if it wasn't the life I planned on.  All things happen for a reason and having faith is important.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

new football fan

I think it is hysterical that this past weekend I was yelling at the football players on TV.  I was home alone watching football....who ever would have thought?

I wanted fantasy football points and I wanted to beat my opponent.  I was being mean - I was hoping that my player who dislocated his finger would come back out to play! How horrible, I think if I dislocated my finger I wouldn't want to play; then again I am not so tough.  And I was hoping other players would drop the ball or get tackled because they were my opponents players, not nice, I should want everyone to succeed in their jobs.

I was glued to the TV.  I didn't want to leave the house or to even use the bathroom because I didn't want to miss anything.  And even more frustrating I wanted to watch games that I didn't get, and I am not that huge of a fan to spend money I don't have on a better sports package.

My biggest challenge is to stay awake to watch some of these games.  Thursdays, Sundays and Mondays?  Yeah, I have to work the next day, so I go to sleep not knowing how my players are doing, and sleep a little restless.

Ah, the obsession that comes from a little friendly competition.  And when football ends....march madness is around the corner.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

what other places have to offer

I've lived in almost the same area for a majority of my life.  I am curious what other places have to offer.  So, if you found this page, please add a comment below (it can be anonymous).  I want to know what are great things about where you live and the not so great things about where you live.

For instance:
Westchester County, NY - pros:  near the water/beaches, near NYC, great schools, 4 seasons, a lot close by, great commuter train line, plethora of entertainment (shows, music, festivals, museums)
cons: congested, high taxes, expensive, very competitive job market, not the friendliest group of people

Of course someone's pro might be another person's con (like a very snowy winter) but I like to hear about different perspectives.  Other commenters - just leave your perspective, don't bash someone else's.  Thanks.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

12 hour day

I had a taste of working 10 hours + 2 hours commuting.  Yup, I left the house at 6:15 am and got home right before 8:15 pm.  What a long day.

I left 40 minutes early so I can talk with a neighbor about some building stuff, but when I got to work, I started working.

Unfortunately today was one of those days that I block off to work late...but I wasn't actually expecting to work so late because there really isn't need to do if people did their jobs.  Unfortunately, I was waiting for one thing to come in so I can do my job that needed to be done today.  At 6:30 I find out that I might not get the I decide to do what I have to do without it and send it out.

I feel like I am not doing my job well because of it, but yet, I have no control.  I hope people don't associate the incompleteness with my efforts.  So I leave work at just about 7 pm and catch the train home.  And then the email comes through with the information I spent all day waiting for.

So I stayed the extra 2-3 hours for nothing, which is even more frustrating.  On top of that, I hoped to go to the grocery store because I don't have food for lunch the rest of the week, and I'll now be resorting to buying  lunch near work and spending that money which makes me cringe.

Anyway, point is, I give all of you who work this much credit because I did not enjoy such a long day.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

virtual feelings

Way back when, people used to send love letters to each other.  In fact, my grandmother barely knew the man she started to write in the military.  But during all the correspondence, they developed feelings for each other and when he came home, they married.

These days, we have the Internet, email and text messages.  Unfortunately, it is too easy to develop feelings for someone you barely know; no wonder why there is so much cheating and divorce.

For example, let's say I have talked to a fellow that I know is involved in an early relationship.  Talking to him so frequently is wrong on my end but at the same time I enjoy our conversations so to stop is really hard.  I am sure millions of people feel this way and in turn, there is an emotional cheating and then perhaps acting on it.

Worse, I think about that early relationship and am jealous because while I think of that fellow, he is out getting laid and having dinner and doing whatever else people do while dating.  However,  his messages to me seem like he might be interested too, and by interested too, I mean there is an low level of flirting, nothing outright.

Add to that, I forget about the ACTUAL person, and because this is all virtual, I am making a new person. A person who as all the qualities I love in a small memory of being in awe when we met and I am forgetting all the other things...things that may not be significant, but aren't the good things. It is easy to get rid of the bad things when you are relating them to the person you've now invented.  This will set me up for disappointment later on because when our paths cross, I might not like the real guy compared to the one I've spent months casually chatting with.

And, I am so against cheating because of what happened to me.  And I slept with the guy and now we chat somewhat regularly? That isn't right if his relationship went from a few dates to over a month/relationship.  He very recently mentioned "I am not sure what to make of the relationship yet".  Which to me screams it isn't going to work...I know if I want to continue dating someone after date #2.  I'd think after a month he'd have a clue.  I can't but think I might be to blame.  Perhaps guys will date someone they don't really like just so they get laid regularly whereas I can go months without it.

I guess I need to fire him as my fantasy football consultant so I don't have a reason to email him twice a week; or him text me when one of my players made an awesome play.

Monday, September 9, 2013

polo spectator

Groupon gave me the opportunity to attend a polo match.  It was a perfect day to be outside and watch a sporting event.

I wish I read more about polo matches because so many people had these amazing picnics and alcohol. I was smart enough to bring a chair and a bottle of water, but I didn't bring any food.  While I wasn't initially hungry, seeing all the crackers & cheese and wine and grapes and appetizers, I would have loved to dig least know in case I ever go to another match.

There must have been over 2,000 people there.  Honestly, I am not sure how many people actually watched the match.  Initially we sat about 4 chair rows in and couldn't see anything, so I am sure a lot of people were in that position as well, especially if they only had a blanket.  After we moved closer, because I didn't pay for a ticket not to watch the game at all, I noticed that many people were just chatting in their group.

Unfortunately there weren't speakers (at least where we were); it would have been nice to have someone announce the game.

Attire ranged from a gown to jeans, it was fun to people watch and see all the interesting outfits.  Especially the more wealthy.  There were a few gentlemen in nice shirts, a jacket, khaki shorts and flip flops.  A lot of women wore cute dresses.  There were some hats, but not as many as I thought we'd see.

After watching Pretty Woman, I was excited to be part of the divot stomping.  That is the half way part of the match when the audience gets to go on the field and fix the divots to smooth out the grass.

Friday, September 6, 2013

factory reset

My obsession with fantasy football was leading towards me absolutely needing the app on my phone so I can track my progress no matter where I am.  I decided to download it, and the next day, my phone kept complaining that it was low on storage.  I can't figure out WHY that is...first, I have such few apps because I don't play games or anything like that.  Second, the ones I've downloaded are mostly going to the SD card.  The SD card is only like 10% full but yet the phone only has a few MB left?

So, I started going through managing my apps and deleting a few including things I didn't know.  But a little while later I found out that the chat app I had wasn't working. I must have deleted something that app needed.  This was no good, I use that app all the time.  I didn't know what to do.  So, I decided to factory reset my phone.  This would solve the chat application and the phone storage space problem.

It was an easy process, and I kept all the information on the SD card (I backed up pictures, music and documents just in case).  Unfortunately I totally forgot about the text messages.  I had a few messages locked - I had a bunch from ManFriend about his desires for me, from Mountain Man with what I thought was a little flirting, from Cop#1 with his desires, and friends who sent important information.  I had information in my colornote with websites to look at, my to do list, my never list, wines I liked, etc....all that was erased.

OK, so it is great that I don't have ManFriend's texts anymore - I deleted him as a contact back in June, so this was actually a good thing (now to clean my emails of ManFriend & SIs emails!)...but some of that other stuff I should have thought a little bit more about.  Also, my email function is slightly different - I used to be able to check off a bunch of emails and delete all at once, now it wants me to do it individually - it might be a setting thing, but I haven't figured it out yet.

But, I was able to download the fantasy football I am happy, for now.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

wasted days

Frustrated.  Annoyed at myself.

OK, so the three day weekend was a complete waste. I didn't do anything.  I had good intentions of going for a long hike, but I worried about the isolated thunderstorms...bad excuse.

I also have to get cracking on studying, and I only read for about 4 hours.  Not good.  I know I am going to regret wasting all that precious free time because the next few weeks are going to get busy.

I am not sure why I am so unmotivated to do anything. I was even too lazy to pop in a DVD and instead watched hours of Mythbusters and the Brady Bunch.  And I ate a lot.

I thought a lot about money...and my lack of it.  I thought about looking for jobs in other states.  I chatted with a friend in another state and found out she just got engaged and is pregnant - and she was trying to convince me that I need a mid-western man like her's.  Then I kept thinking that too bad football wasn't on because I want to see my players get me some points! Oh My God, who am I?

I am not sleeping well again, it isn't 'stress' so much as it is about wonder.  I am having so many dreams about men.  Past men and future men.  My life, what it was, what I want it to be, and I think I am depressing myself because I get excited and then let down when I wake up.

OK, so the few first days of September were extremely lazy...but the rest of the month is busy, so maybe I just needed to do nothing to store up that energy for later this month.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

not much different than you

I was chatting with one of my volunteers a few days ago and he was talking about all New York has to offer and that he imagined my life to be this amazing single in the city kind of life.  Always going out on the town, lots of friends, always things to do.

I felt bad laughing, but NO that is no where near my life.

I started to wonder...maybe it should be. Maybe I need to do more, maybe that would lead to more dating and meeting my future husband, maybe my life would feel more fulfilled.

But honestly, just thinking about that kind of life exhausts me.  It just isn't me.  And I don't think I want it to be.

I am more of a homebody, I enjoy being home and around family and some friends.  I like to do a few things locally - a hike, kayak, beach, things around the house, a meal out.  I like to keep busy during the day...but I don't hit up the bars or a club at night.  I think it is a good balance for me.  And honestly, I couldn't afford to have that other kind of single life.

The main difference between your lives and mine is that I live alone, my household isn't 2+ people.  I cook 95% of my meals, I work full time, I go to little league games and science fairs,  I help with homework, reports and studying for final exams (for my nieces and nephews), I do laundry, run errands and I manage the finances & household.  I even take vacations...but instead of going somewhere with screaming children like Disneyland, I go to places a bit more relaxing for me and instead of having an active and loud home, my place is virtually silent.  Being single doesn't mean a glorious fun life all the time, it just means less people are involved.

Just the other day, I heard on ten-ten winds that there are a lot more single households now than there were years ago...and I don't just mean because of all the divorces, but also those that never married.  I like to think that I helped set that trend...because out of all the people I know...I am the only one who has this kind of life.  People don't understand it and a lot of people think it is more glamorous that it really is.  It's been just a few days over 7 years since I've been single; shocking how much time has passed.  It took a while, but I am getting settled into my single life and I have my own routines and way of life that I actually am OK with.  If I was destined for a single least I know I can handle it.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

turning heads

I am a fairly modest person, I know I am not ugly but I have a hard time thinking I am good looking.  Maybe all the rejection and being single for so long is to blame.

While I love summer, the hardest thing is all the walking around wearing less clothing than in the winter.  And of course, I am getting older and I dress more conservatively than a 20 year old.  What do strangers really think of me? 

But I am happy to report that last week, I was still turning heads and men wished me a good morning.  I am not going to lie, this made me feel good.

However, I don't know if it is because I am attractive or if it is just because I have huge breasts.  

Monday, September 2, 2013

Gratitude List for August

My friend told me about a challenge she completed, and I thought it sounded like something I should do...think about a different thing I am grateful for each day.  I decided I wanted to make my list something relevant for that day...not just in general, so everything you read below is based on that particular day's experiences and thoughts.

In August 2013, I was grateful...

1. That I can pack for 8 days in a carry-on
2. That I can travel alone and be comfortable doing so
3. For fresh air and learning how to relax
4. For my health, allowing me to spend time in ways I enjoy
5. To having great friends, even though I don’t see them often
6. Having time, a little money, and the desire to travel
7. Experiencing new things, some of which I enjoy and others that I don’t
8. That I still do some things alone, and making use of time instead of pouting (although this isn’t
an all the time thing)
9. To have met a fantastic guy that gives me hope that I may not end up alone if there are still
people like him out there
10. For sex in the morning to start the day off right
11. For beautiful weather that makes me feel alive
12. To be blessed with having some amazing family friends
13. To have alone time
14. To be blessed with amazing sisters and a more amazing mother
15. That my boss appreciates me and/or my work
16. That my reading comprehension and spelling have improved
17. That I am fitting into some clothes that I haven’t worn in a while
18. That I am being financially more responsible and resisting urges to spend even more money
19.  A good night's sleep
20.  Commuting by train instead of a long commute by car
21.  For the ability to watch TV on demand when you want it
22.  That I don't live in an area that rains a lot
23.  For email and text messages that allow you to converse and learn about people so far away
24.  To have connections in the towing/car fix area
25.  For dustpans, so I don't have to touch a dead bug
26.  For wax...amazing how a little wax on your eyebrows can clean them and transform your whole face
27.  For I don't have to cook when I am tired and/or so hot
28.  For not commuting an hour by car each way, every workday
29.  For not bitten nails, so I can scratch my body and my scalp.  Feels so good.
30.  For a three day weekend so I can recharge
31.  For living near a body of water so I can kayak, swim, boat, fish, lounge, view and otherwise enjoy the water.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

a hard habit to break

I've been biting/picking my nails since I was about 7 years old. I saw my father do it once when we were in the car and that was it for me.  So young to pick up such a horrible habit.

It has always been a part of me that I am embarrassed about.  When dating SI, he wanted me to kick the habit.  I tried that nasty tasting nail polish...but that lead to not only short gross nails but also to picked lips because the taste would end up on my lips and I couldn't stand it when I licked my lips.  Instead of one bad habit I now had two.  The nasty polish wasn't working, so SI started to file my nails, pushed back my cuticles and moisturized my hands.  It was really great to have someone else responsible for them, and for a while I actually started to do well.  I realized that while short uneven nails is disgusting, I kept doing it because I was so anal about what the longer nails should look like...and in my messed up head, it was better to have them short and gross because then it gives them chance to grow they way they should.  I know, it really probably only makes sense to me.  Having SI care for my nails for a few weeks made a great difference and I even went for a manicure.  Then, I went engagement ring shopping.  Great motivation for keeping the nails in good order.

Obviously that didn't work out and I neither did my nails.  While I would pick at my nails for no reason, stress was a major time when they would sometimes end up in my mouth.

When I was out with Mountain Man that one evening, we were talking about insecurities and I had quite a long list compared to him, and on the top of my list was my size and my nails.  He agreed nail picking/biting was disgusting.  And all I heard in my head was one of SI's reasons why he couldn't be with hands. So, I tried so hard not to keep my hands too visible.

Two weeks after my return from my vacation, I realized that my finger was in my mouth when I was thinking. Shame on me.  At that point I made a conscience effort to once again try to stop biting my nails.  I took out the nail file and made them nice and smooth.  I tried to catch myself if I was about to pick...but the good thing was that with the filed nails, the picking subsided because the nails weren't uneven and nothing to pick at.  So, it has been only one week so far, but I think I am doing better now than I did ten years ago.

As you can see, they still need work.  I need to get a cuticle pusher-backer, maybe a very light nail polish, and more length.  I hope I can keep it up.  This was on my 30 goals for my 30's list....and I'd love to accomplish this.
left hand

right hand