Daily Post 040: Yes

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Ok…

So…

I didn’t get up at 2 am and go to the gym like I had planned.

I did, however, work for 12 hours and then do another two hours of kickboxing. Yes. I am a badass. And extremely tired. And I have a spin class tomorrow with my trainer. I’m crying on the inside just a little.

One thing I do have to say is, “Holy shit, Shefit sports bras are amazing!”

Seriously, hands down, THE BEST sports bra I have ever worn.

They’re pretty much the only reason I did any sort of workout today. I ordered the bras a few days ago. So firstly, I have to say awesome turn around time.

I was feeling like a slacker for not going to the gym like I said I would. Integrity was on the line. I had to do something. So I decided to try on one of the bras and go to kickboxing.

Just… seriously, I’m almost speechless with how fantastic they are.

There’s a pretty wide band at the bottom so you don’t have the annoying “roll up” that some bras have, and the band is adjustable so you can customize how tight it is around your chest. The straps are also adjustable and you can change the straps from H-back to X-back. The zipper locks and has a flap of material so you don’t have to worry about the zipper catching on your shirt or digging into your skin. Because the straps are adjustable, you have control over how much “strap down power” the bra has. There are cups built into the bra so you can still have form rather than feeling like your chest is being crushed into your ribs.

It felt like wearing fucking battle armor under my compression gear.

A-maz-ing.

Right Brain: Oh don’t mind me… I’m just here for light cardio… AND CRUSHING MY WORKOUT INTO OBLIVION BEFORE ACHIEVING TOTAL WORLD DOMINATION!

I don’t think I can gush enough over this sports bra. It held up extremely well. It didn’t even feel like I had one on, to be honest. It was so comfortable that I didn’t notice it. My chest stayed still and out of the way without feeling crushed. Now that I think about it, I didn’t get overly warm either, so the material breaths pretty well on top of all of the other awesomeness this bra has.

I can’t wait to test them out at the dojo with jiujitsu. They held up fantastically for kickboxing. Now we need to test them out with grappling.

They’re on the expensive side, but, in my opinion, they are very worth the money and live up to the hype they have. I’m thoroughly pleased with this investment and I know I’ll be buying more in the future.

I actually pushed myself pretty hard at kickboxing today. I stayed for core which I normally skip out on. Afterward, there was a technique class, so I stayed for that, too.

I’m happy with what I did, with my effort. That’s two days “hard” since I had conditioning at the gym yesterday. I forgot to wear my Fitbit to work so I don’t know how many steps I did, but I do know the only time I sat down today was when I was on break.

Warren and I ended up going out to eat when I got home. I got a rice bowl with steak, carrots, zucchini and two eggs. Sooooo good, and worth it. I earned every carb in that bowl. No regrets.

Work is going well. I talked to my supervisor about having Monday nights / Tuesday mornings to be with Big Bad. He seemed pretty sure that it wouldn’t be an issue. He said on Mondays I can be scheduled as one of the openers, or at least one of the first people to come in so I’ll be one of the first ones to leave.

I haven’t meditated very much about becoming certified. To be honest I haven’t meditated in a while about anything. I’ve been focusing on surviving, but I think it’s time to do some tidying up in regards to my spirit and mind.

Since I’m on the topic of working out I guess I can focus on that for now.

Work isn’t going to make getting to the gym or dojo easy. I’m not going to know when my work days end. I’m going to be tired some / most days. I’m not going to want to do much on my days off.

I can’t let any of that stop me.

If I’m serious about keeping the gym and dojo in my life then I have to make time for them and I have to find routines that work for me. Part of that may include learning how to sleep after working out. In regards to the dojo, the classes happen later in the evening. I’m normally amped after a workout.

With how tired I am from the two hours of kickboxing, maybe what I need to do is stay for multiple classes at the dojo so when I get home I’m tired enough to pass out until I need to be up for work.

My gym trainer, we’ll call her L, wants to increase the intensity of our sessions.

L wants me to do at least two days at the gym, two days at the dojo, and then an active recovery day, in addition to working my job.

I think I’m ok with that. I think I want to do three days at the dojo and two at the gym.

I know that’s a lot. It’s where I want to be. If I can’t hack it yet, then I’ll keep working at it until I can. The days I go to the dojo I’m going to do two hours at a minimum to see if that wears me out enough to sleep.

I miss sparring. I miss my dojo family.

L made me realize that I wasn’t really owning my goals or intentions anymore. It feels like she’s given me a call to action.

She wants me to increase what I’m doing.

Do I want to increase what I’m doing?

After spending the past 24 hours thinking about it, yes. I do. I want to feel like I’m doing things with intention rather than just haphazardly hoping things work in my favor. I want to have a plan and to know what I’m doing and for what reasons.

I’m going to the gym to build muscle and work on agility. And to chill in the sauna because those things are amazing. One day I’ll break down and get a swim suit so I can hang out in the jacuzzi. I’m allowed to have slightly skewed priorities…

I’m going to the dojo to find myself. Like all those months ago when I found my answer for “Why I’m doing this”.

I train because mom died. That’s my reason.

I train because it hurts.

I train because it makes me face moments where I want to give up. It makes me confront those feelings of being lost and alone and outmatched. I train because it helps me find myself through all of the pain and anger I still have. I train because at the end of it all I can cry away all of the anguish and scream in my car and be left with a calmness that I haven’t been able to find anywhere else.

I train because it helps me survive my grief.

I don’t want to give that up. I want to keep working on belting up and getting better. I want to prove to myself that I can do it. I want to be a fighter because I can. Because I don’t want to be a victim. Because I want to be strong physically as well as emotionally and spiritually.

Do I want to increase my intensity?

Yes.

I think I lost sight of that for a little while. Maybe that’s understandable with starting a new job and focusing on passing my certification and not getting fired. I do seem to have this addiction to food that my body won’t let me give up…

I’m feeling more secure in regards to my career, so now I can come back to this area.

My physical self. My inner self. My warrior self.

I need this physical aspect in my life. It’s become part of me over these past four years, even more so in this past year since mom died. It’s how I cope. It’s how I show myself that it will be ok.

I think that’s worth investing into. I’m not going to give myself shit for spending money on new workout gear that I needed. I’ve had that voice nagging in the back of my head since bought my shirts, shorts, and bras. No longer. If I’m serious about my intentions to train then I need to have gear that fits properly, and, ideally, that I want to wear.

I might actually get two more sets so I don’t have to constantly do laundry. I’m going to give it a few weeks and see how having three sets works for me.

I’m going to keep moving forward. That’s basically what I feel L said to me. “I want you to keep moving forward. Is that something you want?”

Yes.

Yes. I want to keep moving forward.

So now that that’s decided and confirmed in my head the only thing really left to do is to do it.

 

rest dy

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Daily Post 027: First Day Off

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Today was successful.

I didn’t have training since my class is ahead of the curriculum. It was nice to sleep in. My first day off from work. I thought about getting up to go to kickboxing at 6am. I slept instead.

I woke up and had breakfast around 10. Enjoyed my cup of coffee outside in the sun. Eventually, I showered and went to kickboxing at noon.

It was a good class. Small. My favorite instructor was there. I feel bad because I haven’t seen him in a while. I guess he does the morning and afternoon classes. Lately, I’ve only been going to the evening classes when I go to the gym instead of the dojo. It’s how my schedule has been working out.

I stayed for the whole class, doing the core section and the cool down. I was skipping those for a while, but no longer.

I surprised myself with some of the things I was able to do in the core work. It’s pretty cool to remember where I started at almost two years ago. I remember I couldn’t run more than 15 seconds before I was gasping and out of breath. Still can’t run a solid mile, but I can do over five minutes solid. More if I pushed myself I’m sure.

Now that I think about it, I haven’t run in a while. Since February-ish. Maybe I’ll go for a run next weekend since this weekend is already booked full.

Anywho, after working out I went to my sports bar for lunch. It was great being able to sit at my table again, another thing I haven’t done in a while. I had my normal half salad then got to work making flash cards. I made it through all of chapter one and all of the abbreviations for chapter two in the course book used for my CHT certification.

There’s a metric fuck ton of information I’m going to have to remember. And here I thought EKG and phlebotomy had a lot of information… those classes seem like child’s play now.

I’m looking forward to this challenge, though. I still have all of chapter two itself to work through as far as the flash card endeavor goes, but I plan to tackle that as the weekend progresses.

I spent about three hours at my sports bar studying. It was a good feeling.

Once my brain started feeling mushy I headed back home. I was able to stop by the post office along the way and finally mail my letters to Nasse. He’s in boot camp right now for the Navy. Not sure if I mentioned that. I’ve gotten three letters from him. Mailed two to him today, wrote another tonight that I’ll send out tomorrow.

Mom always wrote daily to Jason and Jon while they were in boot camp. I did, too. I remember sending Jon little inspirational messages along with my letters to help him get through his days. I’m going to start doing that with Nasse’s letters. I’m hoping the Universe works out that I can be at his graduation. I think I’ll still be in training though and unable to be there for him.

When we talked the night before he left he said he understood if I couldn’t be there and that we would have to get together another time if that was the case. He’s one of the few people from high school I still talk to. One of the few people I miss.

I cleaned a lot when I got home. The stairs were getting fuzzy. They have been for a while. It’s one of those things that I knew I had to do since Warren wouldn’t, but I kept putting it off because what’s the point? He’s not going to notice. He doesn’t care about the apartment being clean. So why should I care? Why should I be the only one to give a fuck?

I’m tired of the apartment being gross, though. I’m tired of my environment sucking. So I cleaned it. I swept and mopped. I vacuumed my room and the living room. I hardcore cleaned my bathroom. I wiped down my computer stuff. I gathered up all of the trash. I went through my “in” box. I restructured some things on my bookcase.

I eventually showered.

I did a few computer tasks. I meal planned and got my grocery list together. I sent a text to my dad to see if he wanted to chat sometime this weekend.

I feel like I’ve done a lot today and while I do feel tired, I don’t feel soul-crushingly drained. I feel good. I feel more solid than I have in a while.

Tomorrow I’m going to try to be up at 6am. There’s boxing at 9am I want to do, followed by driving up to Daytona to go kayaking with Jon again. We might work on his essay a bit while I’m up there. I don’t know why but he’s having a hard time keeping his writing focused on his topic and it’s making editing his paper hard. I think being in person will help the process.

I want to do the grocery shopping before getting home from my visit so that’s done and out of the way. Maybe even prep the veggies and stuff so they’re all ready to go when I get around to cooking. Saturday night Jon and I are supposed to have game time with Jason.

I realized earlier this week while Jon and I were talking on the phone that the three of us haven’t spent much time together in a while. We’re slacking in the “family time” department, so I roped all of us into some bonding time over saving the world from aliens. I’m looking forward to chatting with both of them.

Sunday morning I have plans to see Big Bad. His messages this morning made me smile. He said his elbow was feeling better and that he’s looking forward to wrestling with me soon. I said that I miss our wrestling and kicking his ass at Mortal Kombat. He told me to keep talking my shit. It will only make my beatings that much more severe. XD

I don’t know why but I’ve felt sort of disconnected from Big Bad lately. I think there are several factors for the disconnection. I’ve been busier lately. I’ve had a ton of things going on so I can feel the lack of recharge which I would theoretically be getting if I were spending as much time with him as I had in the beginning of March. We don’t have our workouts on Tuesday and Friday mornings anymore. We don’t have our cups of coffee. The past two times I’ve spent time with him were short and mainly revolved around sex. Which don’t get me wrong, it was amazing, but I feel the lack of affectionate connection which makes me feel alone.

I want the wrestling and smack talking while we thrash each other in video games. I want to hear about his day. I want our fingertips to play over each other’s hands while we cuddle in bed and talk.

His messages this morning reassured me that things are still ok. We’re still us. It made me smile and I think it helped  set the tone for the day. I’m looking forward to our time together even though it’s going to be another short encounter.

Sunday afternoon I have a lunch date with Nicole, yet another person I haven’t seen in much too long, and another social obligation I’m actually looking forward to. After lunch with her, it’s back home to do laundry and finishing my prep work for the coming week.

I like that this weekend is busy but relaxing. It’s all one-on-one things and they’re spaced out far enough that I can still get the things I need to do done in between, so my interactions are like mini rewards for adulting.

I’m glad with how today worked out. I’m glad that it was a day off even though getting paid would have been nice. I think this was actually better than getting paid. It was a “Me” day and I haven’t had one of those in a while.

Much deserved. Thoroughly enjoyed.

Now it’s off to sleep for me so I can be rested for another relaxingly busy day.

Daily Post 026: Working Girl

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My days have been long. Tiring. Stressful.

But they’ve also been extremely rewarding, uplifting, and connecting.

I finished my phlebotomy class. I have my final payment figured out and a solution to the issue of not being able to attend the final part of the PCT course due to my employment training. I still won’t be able to take my board test for a while since Warren still isn’t paying rent reliably. It’s down to paying my bills or getting the certification. It sucks that I’m in this position, but I don’t want to complain about it.

This is a fact in my life. I have to choose between things because my finances are so low. I choose to keep the dojo instead of getting nationally certified for something I don’t need at the moment. I WILL come back to it and I WILL become certified. Just not in the time frame I was hoping for.

The day after my last day of phlebotomy, last Friday, I had my first day of work in almost a year. Physically and mentally it wasn’t a very intense day. A lot of power point slides, a lot of meeting people. Blood work was done. I had my first TB test. At least it’s the first one I have a conscious awareness of. There was a CPR class that I had to stay for since the Red Cross certification I paid for wasn’t accepted.

Everything in hindsight… /sigh

It was actually a pretty awesome class, though. The guy was super funny and engaging. By far one of the best training classes I have been to, ever.

So it’s sort of a toss up. On one hand, I would have liked to have left at 3 PM so I could have gotten to South Carolina sooner. On the other, I’m glad I was able to stay and experience the class.

I didn’t get on the interstate until 6:30 PM and traffic out of Orlando was at a level of stupid I haven’t experienced in a while. I drove until 1 AM. Allison called me around 11 PM and told me that I didn’t have to be up until around 9 AM the following morning which was totally ok in my book. I knew with as emotionally exhausting as my day of orientation was plus the drive that I was going to need as much sleep as I could get before the “big day”.

I slept surprisingly well even though I was basically in Drug Town. Downtown Charleston is pretty much like any other downtown. You have some sketchy areas, but it was actually mildly reassuring. This is where I grew up. There was still a feeling of “home”. I could see it in the way the grass is a different kind of green from Florida. The oak trees with their Spanish moss… The salt in the air is different. There’s something about low country South Carolina that can’t be replaced or impersonated. There’s something about going back to where you came from, even if you return as a visitor, that will pull at the strings of familiarity.

I’m glad I went to Allison’s wedding. Partly because she would have killed me if I ditched the day before when I was supposed to be her maid of honor… I do have a slight sense of self-preservation. But mostly I’m glad I went because it was beautiful to not only see the ceremony but to be part of it.

I realized I will most likely never have a wedding of my own, but I also realized I think I’m ok with that.

I don’t want to spend $1000 on a dress. I don’t want to make people drive crazy distances to hear me say things that I really only want my companion to hear. I’m ok with not having the government involved in my relationship.

Maybe all of this will change as I continue to move through life, but at the moment, I’m ok with accepting that I have always been different and that I will most likely continue to be different. Different doesn’t mean bad.

So the ceremony was really nice. I made my speech. I feel like I tanked on it. I was shaking so bad by the end that I had to put my glass down so I wouldn’t spill it all over my dress. After my “speech” I promptly changed out of my dress and went to a quiet outside area away from the reception and did yoga.

I know that may be weird or maybe even disrespectful but I was completely out of my element. I knew only a handful of people. I was in a dress with makeup, my hair all braided and “not me”. I had just spoken extremely heartfelt words to one of my best friends in front of a ton of strangers… I earned 20 minutes of alone time to stretch out my muscles from my seven-hour car ride.

Allison’s mom came and sat with me for a while. It was nice to talk to her alone. I haven’t been able to since my mom died. I got to tell her about my new job and how I’m doing in life. I’m pretty much her second daughter, she says so herself, so I think she enjoyed catching up with me. It was nice to have some one on one time with someone I’m close with. It helped ease the overwhelmed feeling from the speech.

The rest of the night was fun and uneventful for my part. I got to people watch. I talked to a few other people, but mostly I kept to myself, which I was ok with.

In the end, I helped pack everything up. I went out with Allison’s buddies to a bar and had a few more drinks. Afterward, I went back to the hotel where I had another night of extremely deep and restful sleep.

I woke up in the morning, packed everything up, checked out of the hotel, then drove back to Orlando. I stopped in Daytona first and spent about three hours with my brother. Originally it was going to be a short visit, but then I ended up going to a few stores with him and then we got dinner together. It was insanely nice to spend time with him and I don’t regret it even though it altered my time table for when I wanted to be home.

By the time I got back to my apartment I was done. I don’t even remember what I did. I brought everything in from the car, but that’s about all I remember. I know I didn’t sleep at all even though I tried to. I don’t know if I was wired from the cup of coffee Jon made me while I was with him or what, but I spent all night awake.

One the plus side, I didn’t have to worry about being late for my first official day at work. Downside, if you think spending eight hours reading policy and compliance documentation sucks, try doing it on no sleep…

Even though I was wicked tired I liked how I started my day. I went to Starbucks and got a coffee drink and a breakfast sandwich. I know that was splurging and my bank account doesn’t appreciate it, but I wanted to do it. It helped make the morning special.

As I pulled out of the drive-thru I spoke to my mom for the first time in a while. Out loud spoke to, not just silently thought words.

“Ok, mom. Let’s make today a good day.”

I had tears running down my face as I drove through the parking lot. My chest hurt. I didn’t want to take those steps forward. But I did, and I even enjoyed my day despite the mind-numbing material.

I actually really like the group I’m with. All of the managers for the facilities are super nice and friendly. This really does seem to be a company that lives up to all the talk about the company culture. I really do believe they care about their employees, from my own observations and limited exposure so far.

Tuesday wasn’t as bad, but still really dry material. We were told we needed to come up with a team name. I’m super hoping for DaVita Divas to win. We realized we’re an all female class and with the spunk and banter we toss around the diva portion really fits us I think.

Today the subject of mom’s death came up with a few of my… classmates? teammates? not really sure what to call them mates?… Anyway… it was an extremely connecting conversation.

Two of the ladies are slightly older. One lost her mother about 15 years ago, and her husband 4 years ago. She shared some of her experience with grief with me and I was able to explain mine. In the end, I thanked her for talking to me. I told her hearing other people’s experiences helped me feel not alone and helped me understand and accept my own feelings.

Another, we’ll go with teammate, gave me a hug.

It was really nice. Mom’s death is a big part of me right now, and I like that I was able to share that aspect of my journey and still be accepted.

After class I came home and sort of dicked around on Facebook for longer than I meant to. I did go to Muay Thai tonight, though, so I don’t feel bad about the computer time. I’m pretty happy with the effort I put in at the dojo today. I had been worried about interacting with people, but I’m glad I went. I was paired with a person that I’ve seen at the dojo fairly often, but have never formally talked to. He’s super nice and was extremely helpful with giving me advice for my stance and punches.

I enjoy going to Title Club on the days I don’t want real interaction. I want it to just be me and the bag and whatever the voice through the speakers tells me to do. I don’t have to worry about holding pads or having someone “push” or “encourage” me. I don’t have to worry about my grief snapping and having to explain to someone that they didn’t do anything wrong and that I just need to cry. It’s the main reason I haven’t gone to the dojo as consistantly as I was before the end of March.

I have been keeping up with training, though. Just in a different way.

Today ended up being a dojo day instead of a gym day. It was a good class and I did well and I think the interaction was good for me on a social and emotional level.

I stayed a bit afterward and talked with one of my trainers; the one who had asked if I was ok the last time I had been at the dojo. I got to explain about my new job and why I had left the time before. I got to talk about the situation with Warren. She knows I might have to cancel my membership. It won’t be this month at least. I’m hoping things work out.

I’ll make things work out.

Oh… yesterday…

I went to kickboxing at Title Club since I didn’t feel like being around people. Afterward, I went to the store and bought a few things to make meals since I have to have lunches at work. I made tuna and beef stir fry. I had some leftover rotisserie chicken so I also make spinach and chicken couscous. Got some protein bars. Some Gatorade. Eggs… Normal stuff.

Tomorrow I’m going to buy a lunch box. I donated the one I used to have to Goodwill almost a year ago; shortly after I resigned. I got rid of a lot of stuff when I left Full Sail. I’m actually glad that I’ll have to get a new one. This is a new place. I don’t want to bring old memories into it.

I actually have a to-do list for tomorrow. It’s the first day this week that I’ve made one. Much like with my writing, my to-do lists have become sporadic. I don’t mind, though. I feel like I’m doing well.

This whole month has been hard. Everything from March 23rd, through mom’s death day and past with the final weeks of my phlebotomy class, skill evaluation, beginning a new job only to turn around and be the maid of honor in a wedding which required a total of 14 hours of driving in two days…

I DID do well and it WAS hard.

Now that things are settling down I can feel the rhythm that’s forming. I like it. I wake up early. I workout in the early evening. I come home and unwind.

I’ve already mapped out what I would like to do tomorrow. This is the first day where I’ve wanted to plan ahead. It’s not a very extensive list and the first five things on it are still, “wake up, make breakfast, eat, shower, go to training”, but it’s my list and it’s what I want to do, so I’m going to do it.

I’m going to be ok. Financial stress is pointless even though my financial situation is something I have been stressing over. I’m going to make my life work the way I want it to because I’ve come too far to let it uppercut me again.

Fuck you, Life. I’m ready for you.

Daily Post 011: First Interview

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Saturday. 10am. I woke up at 5 but decided that was a bit unholy so I rolled over and went back to sleep. I kept waking up, staying in the light fog of half-sleep half-aware, and making the choice to stay in bed, snuggling deeper into my blankets while Scarlet stretched all cat-like next to me.

It’s been so long since I’ve done that. Indulged in that. Rolled over and continued to sleep, knowing I’ve done well and that since there’s nothing pressing or urgent, nothing required, I can bask in the feeling of being in bed and secure.

And maybe it hasn’t been as long as I think. Maybe the past two weeks have been so busy and “normal” that it just feels like it’s been an eternity. Going to kickboxing yesterday probably factors into it. My body is still on the low end of the energy spectrum because of the intensity level. Almost 24 hours and I’m still not fully recovered.

I had suspended my membership to Title Boxing to try the dojo. The suspension lasted for three months. On February 20th my contract became active again, which means, yeah, I’ll get hit with the payment, but I also have access to go back to the gym which may in my favor. The gym opens earlier than the dojo, so I can go there, have a morning workout, then go to class. In the evening I can do one class at the dojo and still feel fulfilled. I enjoy morning workouts and I’ve missed being able to have them.

Since there’s not much I can do since my Title Boxing membership is a contract I would rather find ways to make it positive rather than being aggravated about it. I would also rather use it than not since I have to pay regardless of what I do.

I’m going to find out today when my contract ends. I’m fairly certain it’s around June. I’m trying to figure out my finances for the future and my membership is one of the variables I need to solidify.

I suppose I should mention that I’ve had two quizzes for my EKG class, which I’ve aced. I also had my first test this past Friday… jeez… yesterday. Friday was only yesterday…

I got a 95 on the test because I missed one question. It was in regards to the normal frequency value of the T wave on an EKG reading. Missing one out of 20 other numbers I had to remember isn’t too bad. I’m happy with how I did.

I had an interview Thursday. My first interview in five years. Only the fourth one ever in my whole life.

It went well. I was originally applying for a housekeeping position. Through talking to the lady interviewing me and finding out about everything I have done/am currently doing to enter the medical field, she mentioned that a resident caregiver position may be more in line with what I wanted to do.

I said that I had seen the position on their website, but I wasn’t sure if I was qualified enough to apply for it. She loved my resume and all of the answers I gave to the interview questions. She said my purple hair wouldn’t be an issue and that honestly, she hadn’t noticed it. It’s very non-offensive and if it does become an issue then wearing a bandana should be fine. She said she noticed my “pretty blue eyes” more than my hair.

She told me a bit about her journey with the company; how she started as part time answering the phone and is now the training manager for new managers. There were actually several stories of employees starting out in entry positions who are now directors or program managers of their areas. The company is very interested in supporting its employees and promoting from within.

She mentioned her office is located in the of the facilities she would be sending my resume to. There are two locations with part-time caregiver positions available. Both of them are fairly close to my apartment, so I think I would be ok at either, but I would prefer the Oviedo location since I know one person there, even if it’s only because I spent twenty minutes talking to her in an interview.

She asked what I wanted to do for my future, and I was honest and told her that I didn’t really know. I was more looking to “get in” and to see where it took me. We touched a bit on mom’s death and why I am having the change of direction I am. I mentioned I had thought about physical therapy. She said at her location there’s an on-call nurse who helps with physical therapy routines. It could be arranged for me to work closely with this particular nurse to gain exposure to what physical therapy is really like.

After a year of being with the company there’s also tuition assistance, so if I wanted to go to school for something the company would help me grow in that direction.

It’s interesting to think about staying with a company and moving upward. Full Sail didn’t have vertical moment. It wouldn’t have mattered if I had worked there for 10 years. Full Sail doesn’t count teaching as experience. I would have had to leave the school and worked a different job then come back if they even had a position open, or killed myself doing tons of freelance to ever have the “right” experience to become an associate course director or course director. I don’t even know what the qualifications are for a program director, nor do I think that would have been a position I wanted. It’s more business related rather than student/teaching related.

Anyway…

That was my first interview since mom died.

That was my first step towards gainful employment. At least I’m counting it as my first step. I’ve been filling out applications. I’ve been doing “stuff”, but this was an actual interview with another person, and it went well.

At the end I asked if she had any feedback for how I handled the interview and she said I did fantastic and I had nothing to worry about. It was nice to hear her high praise, at the same time I would have liked to have some sort of constructive feedback. There’s always room for improvement, right? I mean, I’m not perfect, so how could I have done better?

I think I could have answered the questions I was asked smoother. I mean, I answered them well, but there were a few times I wanted to stop and make sure I was saying what I wanted to the way I wanted it to be said. I think part of that is being an INFJ. I also think part of that is not being used to having to explain my reasons for things, like, “Why the change in direction?” I think the more I have to answer questions like that, the smoother and more ok with my responses I’ll be.

I know this interview might not pan out. I didn’t get a call yesterday, which I wasn’t really expecting one, but waiting over the weekend is going to drive me insane. If I don’t hear back by 2 pm Friday then I’m going to call both locations and ask if my application has had a chance to be reviewed.

Financially it’s not going to be a lot. At most, $10 an hour. I’m going to push for ten even though I was ballparked with $9.50 as a caregiver.

Mom’s retirement check came in. We have to wait for the court to do red tape nonsense, but that money should be in before too much longer. That will make things easier, but it doesn’t change the fact that I NEED Warren to step up and start contributing to the apartment. It’s not an, “it would be really nice if you would” situation anymore. I won’t be able to pay everything on my own.

I’ve been looking at job postings for EKG techs and there’s not much. I’m finding more for phlebotomy, which I’m not even sure I’ll be able to stomach yet. I think I could work through my fear of stabbing people with needles, but I don’t think I’ll ever be comfortable taking a needle myself. I think the class is going to be rough, but I think I can do it. I think it would be easier to get a job in that area than some of the others.

I’ve also seen a lot of postings for PCTs, but I won’t be eligible for those until around May, potentially. Some of them are only CNA with an additional certification. So it’s possible I can get PCT with my CNA and EKG certificates. It’s possible I could be at the hospital as soon as the beginning of April.

I am scheduled to get my fingerprints taken for the background check required for the CNA test. That was $80 I wasn’t expecting. If it helps me get employed then it’s worth it. I’m supposed to have that done Tuesday before therapy since they’re in the same area. Figured I would do it smarter not harder.

Once the Board of Nursing receives my background check they will assign me a test date. Next week I’m going to start staying after class to practice the procedures again.

The first day of EKG class I saw my old instructor for the nursing course I took. It was fantastic to see him again and I totally gave him a hug. We chatted for a bit. I’m pretty sure he would be willing to help me. If he could watch me do a few of the procedures each day so they’re fresh in my mind I would feel more comfortable about my test.

Becoming a CNA would give me more options as well. I’ve seen several postings for CNA positions though not as many as PCT and phlebotomy.

I crunched some numbers in regards to my expenses and it’s going to be tight for a while. I’m not paying rent right now since the apartment is paid in full for the year. That means I need to figure out what I need to do when it becomes October and my living expenses go up by $500.

Currently, even if I was making $16 an hour full time, I would be scrapping by when October hits, and there’s nothing saying I’ll be making that much.

I still need to factor some things, but I think what I need to do is pay off my credit card before then. Right now I put $300 a month towards it. I need to seriously increase that. Getting the last bit of the retirement money will help. Getting paid back a few things that are owed to me will help. Getting a second job after school will most likely be what does the trick.

So I think that’s going to be my mid-term goal.

Short term Goals

Find immediate part-time employment
Complete CNA and EKG certifications
Complete school

Mid-term Goals

Secure full-time job
Secure seconed part-time job
Pay off credit card

Who knows, maybe I’ll like the second job and keep it to pay off my car after the credit card is done. After that there are the federal loans I still have, but with an extra $600 free from not having the credit card or car payment I may be ok with going back down to one job. Or who knows, maybe I’ll keep it and blast through that as well on top of being able to pay for my own place, no roommate needed.

All I know is that $10 an hour isn’t going to cut it, and even if I made higher than that it would still be uncomfortable.

School eats into a chunk of my day, and it’s not something I’m going to sacrifice on. I still want the dojo, so that’s another non-sacrificial part of my day. That means I don’t have a lot of time to give, but I can give a little. So that means, for the moment, I’ll get a little.

A little is better than nothing, and it’s a stepping stone. I don’t know where I want to go, but this is definitely a forward direction. And it’s into the area I think I want to be in. Or at least moving closer in that direction.

There’s a lot of unknown factors that may make this process easier. I’m not sure how much my uncle will want to pay for my portion of mom’s timeshare once the deed is divided. I’m not sure if Warren is going to get a better job and start to pay me back for helping him move or if Sir will be able to return the money I loaned him. My blacksmith was extremely happy with a template I made for him and said he would pass my name around the cosplay community which might pull in some extra revenue. There’s a potential side project where rigging would be needed as well, which a former coworker has reached out to me about.

There are all sorts of things that “could” happen.

Right now I know for sure, 100%, I can count on myself. So, with just myself, I can make this work by getting a job now, and then most likely a second job once my schedule frees up a bit after school.

Ideally, I would have a full-time job over the weekends. Three 12 hour shifts, which would leave my week open for training at the dojo and part time job to pull in a bit more money for my financial goals. Friday and Sunday I don’t go to the dojo, so I wouldn’t feel bad about missing anything. Ideally, this would be my higher paying job as well so I would be pulling in the most for my time.

The part time job I would be ok with making less since all of that income would ideally be going to the credit card. Or whatever debt I am focusing on.

I know right now I’m not in the best position, but I feel like it’s manageable especially with proactive choices now. I need to change my situation by October. I would like to have two jobs by June. One where I make close to $15 an hour, the other either $10 or higher.

So that’s sort of where I’m at. I’m definitely on the left side of my brain right now. Problem-solving. Number crunching. System evaluating. I need to talk to Warren about the storage unit because that’s a cost I think we can remove or at least lower. I’m going to be using part of the retirement check to finish off the phone issue with Zane’s line, which is more expensive up front but will save me money in the end. I may also switch back to Metro since that’s $40 a month versus $70 and I was happy with their service.

I don’t know if I’m really happy right now. I know I’m not unhappy. Maybe content is a good word. I’m content with where I’m at and I’m proud of a lot of the things I’ve been able to do the past two weeks.

I’ve been consistent with the dojo. And I say “consistent” when I’ve only gone twice, so maybe that’s misleading. I went Monday for submission grappling, which completely kicked my ass. After not being at the dojo for almost three weeks, one of which I was sick with a severe cold/mild flu, I felt like being completely tapped out was understandable.

As a result, I went for a light run Tuesday rather than going back to the dojo. Wednesday I did Muay Thai conditioning. Thursday I didn’t do anything since I had class and then my interview. I went to my sports bar afterward to celebrate by having two Angry Orchards while studying for my test the next day. Which, by the way, alcohol and studying totally go hand in hand.

I spent the evening with Big Bad playing Mortal Combat. We finally figured out how to do the super badass fatality x-ray moves. So brutal. So awesome.

It was an awesome night and I’m glad I was able to spend it with him. Since we went to sleep late we skipped our strength training in the morning, but that’s ok. I made up for it by going to Title Boxing for their noon kickboxing class after acing my test.

So yeah, as far as working out, this week has gone well. I’m going to be going to another Muay Thai class at the dojo in about an hour. Afterward, I’m going to be staying at the dojo to pull up the mats. Paul posted in the Facebook group that the dojo is getting new mats. They want to pull the old ones up so when they get the new ones tonight they can go ahead and place them down. I won’t be able to help out tonight since I already have plans, but I want to help in some way, so I’m planning to stay after class and do some of the prep work.

I already have laundry going, and eventually, once I come home and shower I’ll need to go do grocery shopping. This weekend is most likely going to be pretty chill overall. I haven’t celebrated my test yet. Maybe I can convince Big Bad to do pizza with me to celebrate. When I pass my EKG board I plan to get the shin guards I want from Venum. I haven’t figured out what to do for passing phlebotomy if I pass, but I’m sure I’ll think of something.

I feel like I’m doing better about taking care of myself emotionally and spiritually. I can tell my metabolism is picking back up. My endurance is coming back now that most of the cobwebs are swept out of my muscles.

Hopefully, things settle down a bit and I can find the energy at the end of my days to start writing again. Or maybe now that I’m not going to be spending my mornings researching I can write while drinking my coffee.

Not sure, but consistency with my writing is my next focus. I miss writing and every night I go to sleep without doing it I feel like I’m dishonoring myself. It’s not a giant icky feeling, but it is a small pinprick, a twinge in my heart chakra, of knowing that I didn’t put myself first. I let something else come between me and my feeling of closure.

I don’t like that, so I’m going to work to fix it.

I guess that’s a good way of summing everything up. I’m working. I’m doing. I’m moving forward. Not just in one area, but in several, and knowing that I have a heading makes a lot of things feel better. I might not get to where I’m going via the path I think I will, but as long as I keep in mind where I want to go, then I’ll get there eventually.

It’s a good feeling. A warm feeling. A solid, stable, confident feeling.

I’m being true to myself. I’m being honest with myself. It makes it feel like I doing things right and that mom would be proud of me.

Daily Post 009: Social Night

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Yesterday ended up being pretty awesome. Not as productive on the art side as I would have liked, but it was a very restorative day, and so I regret nothing.

I ate breakfast and stitched for a little while. Eventually I got up and showered. Afterwards I cleared off the kitchen table so I could have a spot to work at. Zane stayed up until round 8am playing his game. I guess he beat it, which is cool. But since he was up so late I didn’t want to be in the room while he was sleeping.

The kitchen table has been covered with crap stuff for the past almost two months. Trevor uses it as a work place for some of his projects, and recently John has been doing stuff with his car, so there’s car stuff all over it, too.

No more. I cleaned off over half of it because I’m amazing at finding places for things to go. I was able to set up my laptop and get to work finding different fonts to play with, reference images for color pallets and character references so I can get the portrait of the character right. I found some awesome wallpaper images while I was doing my R&D which is always cool. I haven’t been adding images to my art folder as much as I used to so my screen savers has been cycling through the same images for a while now. Maybe eventually I’ll take some time to just sit and look at art one of these days.

When I had finished with the research phase I went to the room to write something on the white board. Zane and I play a game where we scramble a 9 letter word and the other person has to figure out what it is.

Zane was awake when I went into the room. I wrote “You are my _________.” On the board with “tomatovir” underneath.

He got it in less than five minutes. >.< So much lame.

When he came out of the room he said that his younger brother wanted to come over later for drinks and games. I figured that was fine. It sounded fun actually. Of course later in the day I started getting anxiety over it, but Zane assured me that if I got burnt out that I wouldn’t be ruining anything by going to the bedroom. Knowing that helped a lot.

I ended up stitching more while Zane played the Fleet mini game inside of Black Flag. He then switched over to the newest Tomb Raider game. I’ve seen the game trailer for it, and from a CG artist standpoint I thought it looked pretty awesome. The graphics are high quality, the water is amazing for a game, and the textures fit with the art style.

I can’t really comment much on the mechanics of the game since I was watching instead of actually playing, and even that was only halfway since I was stitching at the same time, but there seems to be a lot of quick time events. Zane’s not a huge fan of that. There’s also a lot of cut scenes which I love, but again, Zane not so much. So he’s more playing the game for me I think.

I like the story. It would drive me crazy to not get 100% on the missions though, which Zane doesn’t do. Not my game though, so I try not to say anything.

Uke agreed to come over around 7ish. At 5:30 Zane and I went to the store to get hotdogs and chips since we both had a craving for that. Everything we got was buy one get one which made it a pretty good deal. It meant we had extra food for later that night. And Zane and I figured if we ended up wanting more food after we had started drinking we could order pizza or something that didn’t involving us having to go out.

And that’s sort of what happened…. We ended up running out of soda for the drinks we were making, so we used that as a reason to get pizza along with a litter of Mtn. Dew.

We watched several How It Should Have Ended videos before watching Shaun of the Dead. I did not like the movie, but I figured I wouldn’t. I’m not a zombie fan. So watching a zombie parody didn’t do it for me. I ended up going to sleep shortly after the group made it to the bar. Just wasn’t interested or invested enough to find out what happened.

I tried staying on top of drinking water. I had almost a gallon yesterday, but when I woke up when Zane came to sleep I had a headache, so I drank more water and took Advil. Zane passed out, but I was awake, which is pretty normal. When I drink, which is hardly ever, I’ll sleep for about two hours then wake up, stay up for a bit, then go back to sleep.

I ended up going to the living room to hang out with Scarlet for a bit where I fell asleep and stayed asleep until just recently. It’s close to 12 right now. No headache to speak of which is nice, but I can tell it’s a low day. No gym, definitely no people, which means no grocery shopping, but with the leftover food we have from the excursion yesterday and the handful of meals from last week still in there, we’ll be fine for a few days.

We still haven’t meal planed and I’m not all that interested in figuring it out today. At least not right now. I might make a trip out because I’m pretty sure I only have enough creamer for one cup of coffee, which means tomorrow is going to not be fun.

As far as today goes, once I’m done procrastinating I’m going to make that cup of coffee, procrastinate further by stitching until I finish up the face of the dragon which shouldn’t take more than an hour, and then work on my card until the game tonight.

I have been looking forward to Uke’s game for the past two weeks, but now I’m sort of burnt out on social time and I feel a little bad that I wouldn’t mind if the game was canceled tonight. I didn’t factor in the “burn out” level when I agreed to hanging out last night, and now I have to contend with the consequences. Blarg.

On a more positive note, I made it to the gym 5 out of 7 days last week, with one of them being a two-hour session. I almost went running again yesterday, but decided not to. I think it was a good choice since my legs started seriously aching later in the evening, and I’m not sure if that was the muscles being angry with me or a side effect of the drinking.

Either way, I’ve been doing really well with the gym and my water intake. So today will be an “off” day, and I’ll pick back up on Monday with yoga, and maybe running before hand if I wake up for it.

Here’s to another good day. One where I might actually finally put the cloths away so they can stop looking at me every time I go into the bedroom.

Daily Post 008: Early Bird

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It’s 9:10. I woke up around 8:50 on my own. I had turned the light off when I went to sleep, before setting my alarm on my phone, and hadn’t been able to find the thing in the dark. I figured I would use that as my sign to go to kickboxing this morning or not.

If I woke up early enough it was meant to happen. If not, then I would go running or something instead.

Well, I’m up early enough, so guess what I’m about to go do. : )

I’m happy that I woke up early. I like how I feel I have most of the day to get stuff done.

I plan to put the cloths away once I get back along with having a filling breakfast. I plan to spend most of the day working on my homework. Zane and I are going to hold off on grocery shopping until tomorrow since we still have a fair amount of food. That’s due to still being slackers and eating out way more than we should.

We also haven’t meal planned yet, so even if we were to go shopping, we would need to figure out what goes on the list first.

The litter box needs to be cleaned, the dishwasher will need to be run after breakfast, which will mean dishes aught to be put away later, but in all honesty there isn’t much which needs to get done.

It’s a slow day, a low day, and I’m ok with that. And at the moment it’s starting with bottle of water, half a shake, and some apple pieces with crunchy peanut butter.

Which will be almost immediately followed by a thorough ass kicking where I crawl home wondering why I do these things to myself because that’s how every morning should start. XD

No, but seriously, I’m looking forward to today. Here’s to a restoring Saturday.

Daily Post 005: Another Day for Mental Health

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I did have soup on Tuesday. With a half piece of artisan bread, which is really just bread with a fancy name. It was good, though. I listened to more of Dragonquest while I sat in a corner booth, looking out of the window and the rainy outside world but seeing a different world as the voice from my headphones weaved the story for me.

When I was done eating I stayed and stitched for roughly two hours letting the story continue to sweep me away. Different time, different place.

I came home. And I honestly don’t remember much past that. When I was ready for bed Zane wasn’t tired yet. He was watching something on the computer I think, so I went to the living room. He was supposed to wake me up when he was done with his show, but instead he didn’t. He said he was afraid that if he woke me up that I wouldn’t be able to fall back to sleep and he felt like I needed the sleep more.

I woke up at 5:30 on my own. That seems to be a trend now. Only it sucks because at 5:30 I’m not ready to be awake, so it’s just annoying at the moment. If I went to sleep around 10 maybe 11 it would be fine. I normally function great on 6 to 8 hours of sleep. Not on 5 or less. It’s like the halfway point for me. It’s just enough that I’m not exhausted, but it’s not enough to feel refreshed and ready for anything. I’m an irritable grouchy dragon at 5:30.

Since I was awake I got up and went to the bedroom. Zane woke up enough to chat with me for a few minutes before we both went back to sleep. I didn’t wake up again until 11. The day already felt over.

I actually called out of work again and, once again, I don’t feel sorry.

Zane and I talked a lot yesterday. It was after watching an episode of Sherlock. We had a spat and I started on that well worn-downward spiral. He actually left the room telling me to enjoy the rest of my day, but it was sarcastic and hurtful and added to the feelings of failure I was already experiencing. I was regretting taking the day off because if I had gone to work I would have been around him.

I started to clean the kitchen in an attempt to keep me too busy to cry or feel. I didn’t want to do either of those things. The sink was a mess from the night before. No one ran the dishwasher so I had to wait for that to finish earlier in the morning before cleaning out the sink. I put the dishes away and had things mostly cleaned up before Zane came back out to talk with me.

He said it was frustrating that every time something “bad” happened, no matter how small, it triggered depression for me. I can understand why he’s frustrated with that. I’m frustrated with it. I don’t know how to stop it, though. It’s like I’m overly sensitive to everything. Every small, tiny display of disappointment makes me feel like I have failed.

I said I think it had a lot to do with how everything has felt bad since Friday. That was our fight at the ice cream shop. Then Saturday had the fight in the car. Sunday was fairly calm. Then Monday had the issue where I felt lied to.

I know there are positive interactions throughout my day. It’s so easy to remember the negative things, though. And when I feel like their still unresolved and more little negative things happen it feels like all that ever happens are negative things.

Zane gets over stuff way faster than I do. But for me the emotions linger. I don’t know how other people handle or deal with their emotional issues. For me they are like wounds. They don’t just magically go away. They aren’t water or spilled milk that evaporates.

Their slashes, scrapes, bruises. They hurt. And they feel very real to me. And just like an actual wound it takes time, days, sometimes weeks, for something to fully heal properly. And the more that it’s poked at, picked at, the longer it takes to heal, the more sensitive, tender, and sore the area around it.

That’s what the fights are like for me. And then the small negative instances that we have further inflame the feelings. Comments which are meant to be teasing aren’t because even though it’s a joke there’s truth in it. And knowing that it’s partially true hurts because I’m too sensitive to see the humor in the situation.

I don’t think I should apologize for that. I don’t think I should feel bad for handling emotions the way I do. I think I’m a pretty functional adult, most of the time. These past months are a poor example of that. I like that I feel things deeply, all things, not just the bad things. I feel joy, and happiness, and peace on what I feel is a much deeper level than most people, too.

Zane mentioned that it might be beneficial for me to seek out a therapist. That maybe having someone else to talk to would be good for me. I can’t say I haven’t thought of that myself. Even before Zane, while I was dating Warren #2 I thought about it. My mom has mentioned it in the past as well. It’s something I think I’m going to look into. Having more information like cost and such would at least let me know if it’s even do-able.

We also mentioned alone time. It always seems to come back to that in one way or another. It’s less than two weeks before Zane begins his new job. Less than two weeks and I’ll have the mornings to myself, the apartment completely empty of all other humans. I don’t know what I’m going to do with myself.

I mentioned to Zane that I was thinking about taking his first week of work off. A mental health week for myself. So instead of four weeks in December, I would only have three weeks, but I think I’m ok with that.

I think I need time away sooner rather than later. And I think I need it during a time where I would get the most solitude. So instead of it being next week like I had originally, knee-jerk reaction had decided, I think I’m going to try to tough it out for another week and a half so I can have eight glorious hours everyday to myself.

The thought of that much quiet, that much space, makes me want to cry in relief.

Things aren’t bad. Things are getting better. Things are going to be ok. It’s almost over and all I have to do is hold on. All I have to do is not fall apart in the home stretch.

After our conversation Zane and I were fine. I felt better. I normally do after talking with him. He ended up sitting in the living room watching shows on the computer with his headphones plugged in while I cross stitched and listened to my book.

At 6:45 I went to the gym for kickboxing. I drove since I was planning to stay for yoga afterwards and I didn’t think I would be up for walking much after two hours at the gym. Which I was completely right.

My legs were so shot. In a good way though. I showered when I got home. I stitched a bit more then went to sleep. I woke up at 4am this morning with a massive headache. I know it’s from not drinking enough water. I filled up my Gatorade bottle and drank most of it before going to the couch. I didn’t think I would be falling asleep anytime soon and I didn’t want to wake Zane up.

I ended up waking up at 9, so I guess I was able to fall asleep, when my alarm went off. I had planned to go running this morning, but the inside of my left ankle has some sharp soreness that I don’t want to agitate. So I guess today is going to be a rest day instead.

You win this time, Body. But only this one time… >.>

I could do yoga, but I’m still fighting off my headache. Sadly this is a day where physically I most likely should take the day off, but I’m not going to because screw you, Sickness.

I never use my time off as I “should”. I would show up to work on my deathbed in most cases. I’m going to keep drinking water and hope that the headache goes away and doesn’t turn migraine on me.

I need to scan my latest project. I need to start work on my assignment. I need to cook the Cajun pasta, too. Past that, there’s not a lot of needs for today. Shower… Coffee since that hasn’t happened yet. I still have about and hour and a half to enjoy the morning. I wish it felt like that would be enough.