Let’s take one more shot and go back to your place.
My half-eaten ramen bowl sat in front of me with a cocktail glass half full of a crushed lime and watered down Tito’s.
Two more tequila shots please! Rail’s fine.
Let’s take one more shot and go back to your place.
My half-eaten ramen bowl sat in front of me with a cocktail glass half full of a crushed lime and watered down Tito’s.
Two more tequila shots please! Rail’s fine.
It was the shortest relationship I’ve ever had.
I don’t like to put a timeline on my life. I don’t like to say you should arguing with your S/O over how many pillows you should have on your bed at age 27. Or you should be making x amount of money at the age of 30.
I don’t believe life should or can be lived that way.
Life comes and goes as it does. People enter and exit whether we want them to or not.
Men should be so lucky to date me. I tell my friend in full confidence over $10 vodka sodas at Union Market. I mean it, I really do.
And not in a “I’m too good for everyone which is why I’m single” sort of way. In a way that I’m aware of the qualities I posses and I know someday I’ll find someone who complements in a way that I see fit.
Sometimes I get impatient is all.
I wasn’t as self-aware a year ago. As I have talked about many times, I had been exiting a toxic thing, my career was in shit, I was lost living life in an endless fog and every one else was to blame for my problems.
From there, I started to take more control over my life and the decisions I made. I was more proactive instead of reactive. Thought with more logic and stopped putting my mental health in the hands of someone else. Life got exponentially better.
The story was so eerily similar and triggering I can’t explain why I stuck around.
Well, maybe that’s why I did. The story — the characters, the setting. It was practically the same.
Two men. Same occupation, covered with tattoos and realities they couldn’t face. Subconsciously, I wanted to fix the problems they had. And in retrospect, maybe I wanted them to fix mine too.
He was creative. Passionate. Edgy.
Two drinks in and his hand touched my thigh. I told him I didn’t like PDA. As we walked to the next bar, he pulled me to the side. I know you don’t like PDA, but this outside of the bar, so does it count? He put his hands around my neck as he kissed me. We’re awesome, he whispers in my ear.
The emotions were intense from the beginning — on both ends. He was vocal about how he felt, forward if you will.
I go away for a few days, our texts were frequent. He informs me of a “primary partner” in his life. I inquire further. He labels it as “progressive.” I’m skeptical and a bit taken aback but I don’t really know him all that well, who am I to judge?
We are so awesome together, Beth.
The red flags become brighter, but I’m already wrapped in. Besides the chemistry in the bedroom, there’s something more here too. I wasn’t sure I was looking for something serious, but he was insistent that this was where it was going.
It feels weird to bring this up on the second time we hangout, but I can really see this going somewhere Beth, I like you so much.
We’re outside. It’s 1:30am. The night is still warm, the ground wet from the rain fall. I tell him I feel the same way. Because I did. I did feel the same way. I rest my head on his shoulder. It feels right.
I ignore the hours and hours in between text messages. With our work schedules, it was inevitable. I didn’t need to text him all the time anyways. I ignore the times he “forgets” about our plans and the false promises to spend time together outside the confines of our apartment bedrooms. I ignore the verbal warnings from not one, but two women about his past behavior.
He passes them off as “crazy.” I nod.
I call him out for being a narcissist. I’m kidding, but like not really actually at all. I can practically sniff a narcissist from a mile away at this point.
I’ll spare you the countless bickering and back and forths we’d get into over him being sketchy. Gimme a break dude, I’m fucking working. Do you even work? How do you have this time to text? I ignore this blatant disrespect for my job and ignore. However, when I don’t answer him…y’all know how this game goes.
I confide him with details about my previous relationship to explain why communication is important to me. He seems to be completely understanding and supportive.
We progress. Or at least I pretend that we are. Our feelings for each other are intense. One moment we’re having this incredibly engaging conversation, the next moment we’re having mind-blowing sex and the next moment we want to rip each other’s heads off.
Have you forgotten about the primary partner yet? Ah yes, by this point he has completely ended things with her. For me…apparently. Similar to my previous relationship, she has mental problems too. However, she’s “supportive” of us. She wants him to be happy.
Here’s where things get good. Strap up ladies and gents.
We had just finished yet another night of arguing. He comes over before work, I’m crying. He knows he has me. A string of lies and false promises spill from his lips. We kiss goodbye.
I finish a spin class. I haven’t heard from him in a few hours, I’m assuming he’s busy. I go to the store and pick him up a coffee to surprise him at work. The establishment is empty. I walk to to the back where he works and I pause.
I’m horrible in awkward and tense situations. We all say nothing. I poke him. I know who she is and she knows who I am. My head sweats, I break the silence with a hello and a swift exit.
He races me to the front door, what’s up babe? no hug or kiss? I explain to him I’m upset but I’m not about to talk it in the middle of the sidewalk. He looks at me confused. Nothing is going on babe, you know we’re still friends, she came here to help me with work stuff.
I put my head down and walk away. I cry for a second time before the night falls.
I find a random alleyway and sit down and continue my cry sesh. I’m caught up in this shit again. Fuck. I think about the hell of the year I had and the progress I’ve made this far. My hands sit on my head. My mascara stains my white shirt. I think about the breakdowns I’d have in the corner of my room. Single stream tears erupt into never ending currents. Strong and forceful. You ok over there? A random passerby inquires. Yea, thanks.
I forgive him, because that’s just what I do with guys like this. I forgive. I forgive them without ever forgiving myself.
I can’t quite remember the timeline correctly, but within the next couple of days I am his girlfriend. I thought that may be the solution to all of our problems. Well, I knew it wasn’t but he asked me, and I said yes.
The term “girlfriend” holds some sort of validation to me, still. I’m not sure why. Perhaps it’s because I haven’t been someone’s “girlfriend” in years. Or perhaps when he said it, it held more weight because he had been convincing me since basically day one that I was the only one he wanted.
Or maybe I was just convincing myself.
I know what you’re thinking. Beth, he’s a fuckboy, why are you falling for this shit?
I said it earlier, I like to fix people. I think I can fix people. Ok, I know I can’t fix it all, but I get some sort of high from being the positive part of someone’s life. It’s selfish, really. It’s like I think I’m less fucked up then them, so being around them makes me feel better.
Yeah, I know it’s fucked up.
I tell my mom and sister about him, then my friends.
I could’ve predicted the next series of events if I really dug deep…I just didn’t know it would be so soon.
7-8 vodka sodas deep, I am drunk. I want my boyfriend to meet up with me, he’s being non-responsive and sketchy. I knew in my gut something was going on. In a sad, drunken slur I give him an ultimatum.
What is going on? Why are you always so sketchy? If you don’t meet up with me I’m never going to see you again!!!!
His ex picks up his phone. She knows about me and sounds sweet (I know this is weird). I’m silent. He’ll never give you what you need, Beth. I learned this very early with him. You’re not special.
Him and I meet outside in a public place. My make up is fucked up from the tears and my hair is a hot mess from the humidity. I want to change my shoes because I have been in heels for 6 hours. We sit down and start to talk.
Suddenly, his ex turns the corner. She sits down on the ground in between us as I stay silent. This situation is sobering me up REAL quick as I’m waiting for a camera to come out from the bushes with a producer screaming YOU’VE BEEN PUNKED!
They start to engage in a rather loud argument about their fucked up shit they have going on. I chime in. Apparently he had just asked her to be his girlfriend moments ago but is now denying it. He also claims we have been dating for a day (wrong, it had been approximately a week…to get technical). I call him out. I quickly find out he cheated on me. Twice. He’s confused. As am I.
The cigarette smoke blows from her mouth.
I told her I wanted to be with you, Beth. She acknowledges this. We’re on the same page for a very, very brief moment.
There were so many words happening at once. She claims to be on my side and stands up, for me. I don’t really know her and not totally understanding her intentions, but I also decide I’m too drunk for this shit. I stay silent. He asks her to let us talk, she stays.
I should have just gone home, but I wanted to talk to him, only him. I’m still attached. He gets up in anger, claims he’s going to pick up some other chick and leaves. I watch him go and sit in a whimpering, pathetic cry.
I call out for him (Jesus, this is more of a reality show than I thought), and she’s still there. I politely ask her to leave. She goes. I meet him down the road a bit of the ways. The drama continues. We talk about us briefly, but he realizes that she took all of his shit in her car with her to Maryland or somewhere…like, everything he needs for work the next day. I laugh internally and then let out a snort. I can’t help it.
He’s freaking out, I’m a drunk, well now a pretty sober, mess and so much shit just happened that I’m unsure what to do next. I should go home, I really should. But I also know that I need comfort. And I know for SURE my drunk ass does not have the will power to just go home in this state. For Christ’s sake, I had just exited a reality show stint.
We lie in bed and he tells me he is falling in love with me..I hesitate. He takes a swig of whisky and brushes the ash from his cigarette off the sheets onto the floor. It’s 4am. I tell him I’m no longer his girlfriend. We have sex. It’s meaningless. He sleeps past his alarm the next morning. Somehow, this is my fault.
I wish this was the end, I really do.
I leave his spot the next morning.
Your ex just walked into my spot. We’re about to take a shot together.
I freeze in the middle of the street. My phone lit up. Ok, ok, cameramen, where the HELL are you?
What? I respond.
He knows about our past. I expect him to be cordial and not fight my battles, but I am at a loss for words.
I expect him to act the way that any good person would, but then again I am understanding that he’s well, kind of a shitty person. Ok, I knew this all along…but we already went over this. I call him.
Why are you freaking out? Want me to fucking kick him in the balls? Like what the fuck Beth? I’ll call you back.
I’m at home. Writing this makes me realize how many times this man brought me to tears…fuck, man. The next text brings me to a full blown anxiety attack.
It’s a picture of him and my ex that he sent. To my phone. Followed by a *heart faced emoji*
Note: we’re talking about the same dude who told me he was falling in love with me like 12 hours before.
I slam my laptop I sit in the corner of my couch infested with dog hair that I had failed to vacuum this morning while covering my face. Hyperventilating. I grab my journal and start to write. It’s not working. I rip the journal page out and throw it on to my coffee table. My dog sits and watches this unfold and puts his head on my lap.
I find comfort in my friends.
He then sends me a string of texts attacking my character as laid out my ex boyfriend (a source worse than Wikipedia). I want to disengage. I want to block his number and not participate. I feel the need to protect my reputation to people who never actually mattered in the first place.
I’m protecting my reputation to two men who still, to this day, have yet to admit their faults in the situation. I’m protecting my reputation to two men to have such a false and narrow view of the world that they probably never will.
I’m protecting my reputation to essentially, two narcissists , two people who will never apologize, because to the world, they are superior. <–click for a link to a great article and perspective on narcissism.
Are you still hanging in there? We’re almost there.
Mmmmmmmk here’s where I get REAL pathetic. Yeah, I still talked to him after all this. He knew all the right things to say. I was still upset and had a glimmer of hope that I could open his eyes that I could be good for him…oh, Beth. You’re so cute.
About a week later he brings up the reality-show pilot — Love Trifecta, I’m calling it. I’m at fault for the whole thing apparently. Jokes on me! Apparently there WERE people filming, I am now “the drunk chick screaming at *** in front of the ***.” I’m scolded for ruining his “brand.” I know this is not true. I snort out in laughter, because although I was drunk, this was simply another deflection tactic. Everything’s my fault, remember?
A) He’s not that important and this ain’t Hollywood. B) I wasn’t causing the scene. C) No mention of the whole cheating thing though!! Did they catch that on video!?!!?
Ok, ok, I’m not going to be petty, this was just one of the many things that has now turned into an “eye-roll” incident for me. Note: this was only brought up after the fact I suggest we talk about the fact that he cheated on me.
I call him out for being an ass. He says all the right things. I’m brought back in.
We feel so strong together.
What I’ve wanted has never changed. I want you. Just you.
Passing your building right now. Miss you!!! 😦
Ya know, generic shit that I continue to call him out for in a string of frustrating texts.
So, shit ended.
You guys are still here? Damn.
Per usual, I never know how people are going to react to these kinds of posts. If you’re an avid reader, you know not this is and will never be a “bash your ex” blog and I hate that I still give this disclaimer after all this time, it just feels necessary.
Writing helps me work through things, and you guys seem to like it. Life in the dating world as single-something is entertaining, and unfortunately, I think there are more people than you think who have been through similar shit.
As for me, I’m ok. Pretty great actually. It’s amazing what cutting toxic people out can do for ya! Although I’m not proud that I diverted back to old “habits,” if you will, I was able to catch on and detach myself much quicker than before. If there’s a silver lining to any of this, is that this relationship ONLY lasted for about a month (well, officially a week), as opposed to on and off for a year.
While things still lingered on a bit through text after it “ended” I was still doing my own thing. I knew how to exist without him. Ok, yeah, the entirety of “us” was about 90 days — but an intense 90 days!
That right there is important. Whether or not you have a significant other, ya gotta be your own person — have your own dreams, alone time, opinions, etc. etc. Yeah, its cliché, but you know how a cliché becomes a cliché?
I acknowledge that there are still things I need to fix about myself. I write all the time about self love and confidence, but here I am identifying all the red flags from the second date and still going for it. I know it’s problematic and it scares me too. It’s not a habit I want to fall into simply because I don’t like the type of person I become when I’m with toxic people. I don’t want to be the person who lets men get in the way of my own shit, but I recognize that I can be that person.
With this guy, I knew he wasn’t The One. He had “I have a lot problems I don’t want to deal with so I’m going make self-destructive decisions instead” written all over him. It mad me ask myself, “What things about myself do I not want to deal with? Is my ‘self destructive behavior’ men like this?” Possibly.
He was saying all this shit to have sex with you. You’re dumb.
Mmmmm. Maybe. But I did take him home on night one, and I think he knew he didn’t really have to try that hard. I even offered casual sex! To which he was “saddened and offended by.” Anyways, I could spend forever searching for these answers that I’m not even sure exist.
It was only 6 weeks, you crazy.
Maybe. But my story remains the same. I was crazy for him because he was crazy for me too..or so I thought. I’ll never know what was genuine and what was total bullshit. He claims it was all “real” but I think reality is still a fragmented construct he has created in his own head.
I find myself asking “Why?” a lot. I know the problem starts with me. I know that I need to identify exactly what in my life triggers me to fall weak to this manipulative behavior. While the sex was great and we had glimmers of happy moments together, that was sort of it. I don’t like drinking whiskey out of the bottle at 4am. I don’t like talking about all of his big career moments without one mention of mine. I don’t like waiting around, wondering when his text will come…if it ever does. Simply put, I don’t like the person he is.
I was more sad about the fact that I had fallen victim to yet another person like this rather than losing him. There are plenty of “hims” out there. I know this. In the same way that I wasn’t special to him, he wasn’t all that special to me.
I haven’t lost faith. If anything, it gives me more stories to tell you guys.
So, I’m just moving along. Swiping left and right (mostly left), having safe (and consensual!!!) sex with cute dudes, finally sorta kinda developing abs? Idk, life hasn’t been so bad to me.
Like I said, you’d be so lucky to date me.
Just ask my mom!
About a month ago I wrote a blog about how I wasn’t ready to date.
A simple claim that I had recently come to grips with at the time. I received a lot of feedback from people who shared their stories with me. It was a roughly a 70/30 split between people who have experienced similar situations versus people who were encouraging me to put myself out there.
Someone will come around when you least expect it.
I semi-believe this but also believe that things sort of align with the place you are in your life. The right person might come along, but maybe you’re at a point where you’re setting for the wrong guys. Idk. It’s a process.
Dating in 2018. Have you tried it? It’s weird.
One moment I’m aggressively swiping through apps cramping my thumb from the abundance of leftward motions and the next moment I say fuck it and just hope Prince Charming will be sitting at my bar.
You’ve gotta kiss a lot of frogs before you find your prince.
If that’s the case, there’s an serious overpopulation problem. Like China except Toad Land. Kidding, sort of. I’m not bitter. I swear.
But yeah, it’s just so weird and complicated. Half of the time I blame myself and the other times I blame the toad pool. I don’t know who are the “right” people to date for me versus the totally wrong people. Or if there even is a right or wrong way of doing things. Ya feel me?
With each ending relationship, I learn something new about what I want and certainly what I don’t want — but will this just be an ongoing learning experience rather than actually finding the right right guy? On paper, I know who I want. Or, rather, who I should want. I’ve had a few instances with guys where I’ve mentally gone through the checklist and they are seemingly the perfect person for me.
Then I lose interest. Or they do. Whichever comes first.
And most of the time, I don’t know why. But I’m also at a point where I don’t really care. Like, I feel like I’ve sort of expected things to be doomed from the beginning which sounds so depressing, negative and pathetic but in my head it’s really not. It’s just simple statistics. And I don’t mind it.
I used to care a lot more about what men thought of me. I would meet a guy that I was remotely interested in and suddenly I’d start planning my future with him. You’re lying if you didn’t go through a similar phase. It was like every guy I made out had to be my boyfriend at some point or else I’d feel a pit of rejection in my stomach that wouldn’t go away until the next potential suitor came along.
Hey Beth, what are you doing tonight? GUYS OMFG HE TEXTED ME. PAUSE EVERYTHING YOU’RE DOING AND TELL ME WHAT TO REPLY. HOW LONG SHOULD I WAIT TO TEXT BACK? LIKE 8 MINUTES YOU THINK?
*48 seconds later*
Hey! Not much, just hanging with friends. And you?
It was as if waiting 8 minutes would make me seem less psycho and eager. I don’t know. It was college. Times were different, I guess.
Now, tbh I don’t really give a shit. I’ve sort of gotten over letting guys judge my “crazy-ness level — whatever that means these days. If I’m interested in someone, I talk to them. If they fail to put the effort in on their end, I lose interest pretty quickly. I don’t overthink a double text and I certainly don’t wait 27 minutes to text back if they took 21.
I take 18.
In a sense, I’ve made dating less complicated, but I also don’t think about it as much. Well, like, guys are quite often ~on the brain~, but so are the thousand of over things going in my life — things that are usually more important.
I’m busy and I need coffee, always. My ideal relationship would be with someone who is equally as busy but makes time to bring me coffee and call me pretty. But I’m also OK with doing those things on my own.
So, um, I guess I’m actively dating again. But it wasn’t because one day I was like Ya know what, Beth?! Pull your Tinder bootstraps up and get back on the dating train!!!
Tinder bootstraps? What?
It more just sorta happened? I stopped putting pressure on myself to move on and decided to just rise above what happened and be better. He’s not the reason why I wasn’t ready to date. It was me. I guess I started being open to new possibilities.
I’ve chosen to spend my time with people who are simply worth my time. If it turns into something more, great. But if not, that’s cool too.
Recently, a guy asked what I was looking for. Relationship-wise, of course.
At first I was sorta taken aback. Like, wooaaaah how dare you ask a super valid question before we go on our first date? I showed my friend, how am I supposed to answer this?
Um, idk Beth, maybe you just be honest? There’s a thought!
I told him I didn’t know. It sounded like a cop out answer, but I don’t really think I’m in a place where I want or should put a pretense on someone or something that may turn out to be just another toad in the toad pool. I’m not saying all toads are bad people, I’m justing saying that most toads won’t be the right toad for me.
How many times can I use this metaphor without exhausting it? The limit does not exist.
It would be a lie to tell him that I’m actively searching for a committed relationship but it would also be a lie to tell him I wasn’t. I just like, don’t know, ya know?
My last relationship made me second guess everything. I always felt like I was being too needy. Too emotional. Too psycho. Too everything. It was exhausting. I really hate that I keep talking about the same dude, but like, whatever man. Feeling all that shit sucked and I continue to learn more about how it impacted me. And I guess I can thank him for giving me some solid content to chat about with you guys.
Point is, I don’t want to second guess anything when it comes to relationships, platonic or romantic. Wishful thinking, I know. I just want things to, like, be. You know, just some dude who likes a gal enough to bring her coffee and call her pretty without being a shithead.
Sorry, that last part was aggressive. Just keepin’ it 💯!
Speaking of aggressive, I called a dude a jackass recently. Like, last night. We had been sorta on and off for quite some time and it wasn’t a complicated thing…until it was. Sure, I was a few vodka sodas deep and maybe I should’ve just let things go naturally. But also, it’s how I felt. Simply put.
I tried coming up with a nicer noun, but I guess that was the first thing that came to mind. Nobody’s perfect, and I’m sure there has been points in my life where I’ve acted like a jackass, but at this point in my life, I’m just kinda over the what is this? banter. Long story. Possibly might get into it at another time.
As humans, we naturally complicate things. We take a scenario and twist it into some convoluted mess that can’t really be explained to anybody not involved in the mess itself. Usually this doesn’t end so well, but we continue to do it anyways.
I’m about to sound soooo basic and soooo pathetically single and sorta aggressive. Ready for it? I simply just don’t have time for stupid shit. Mentally. Physically. Emotionally.
That’s not to say I won’t continue to deal with stupid shit, but hopefully it’s stupid shit that I can’t control. Ya feel me? I’m also not quite sure how I define “stupid shit” but I think we all know what constitutes as “stupid shit.”
Per usual, I don’t really know where this blog post was supposed to go. I guess it’s just refreshing to say that I’m at a point where I’m equally as comfortable dating as I am not. It’s refreshing to say that I can confidently call someone a jackass and not later label myself “crazy” for it. If it’s deserved, of course.
I used to think that if you were engulfed in the dating scene, it had to be a main focal point in your life. Like, you had to actively make it a part of your day to find the right toad.
I’ve been on 4-5 dates this past month with different guys. Sure, they took up the small amount of free time I had, but they were dates that I wanted to go on. Some were better than others, but there was no pressure to make it something more. No pretense that it had to be something more. Just two people who showed a genuine interest in each other and wanted to act on it.
The best part?
All Most of them didn’t turn out to be a convoluted, complicated mess! It’s great!
I’m not naïve and I won’t say relationships aren’t ever complicated, because they are. That’s just howwww the cookie crumbles. But, I suppose there’s a spectrum of complications and I’m just out here tryna fall on the right side of it while also trying to to avoid the spectrum entirely.
I have really cool stuff going on in my life — stuff that I am so damn proud of. It’s crazy to think how much I was holding myself back when I was with someone who took up literally all of who I was. I knew there something more out there for me, but I was so consumed in this “relationship” that I never acted on it. I don’t want to be at that point in my life again.
I don’t know the type of person I need to be with. I don’t where he is either, but he’s out there somewhere.
I can wait. Hopefully he can to.
While you’re waiting, FYI I usually drink hot coffee with almond milk. It’s an easy order to remember. You’re welcome.
The blind in the middle window of my bedroom is broken. I should get it fixed, but I enjoy Mother Nature as an alarm clock.
You cannot hit snooze on the sun. I’ve tried. Mother Naure is relentless.
I am relentless.
I didn’t mean to get super personal, but I couldn’t help it.
“What’s your biggest fear in life?”
I hadn’t prepped for this one. I had four pages of a Google Doc typed out, with every possible question I could attempt to predict.
Tell me about yourself.
Why should we choose you?
What’s the biggest challenge you have faced and how did you deal with it?
What skills have you learned that have helped you develop both personally and professionally?
Why do you want to work for us?
What would you say your weaknesses are?
The list continued. I had thorough responses typed and saved as I watched the cursor blink and continue to ask each question I had already answered.
I paused, I’m sorry, that question sort of took me off guard.
She laughed. I laughed (nervously). “It’s a loaded question,” she acknowledged, “take your time.”
I was quiet for several seconds. Breaking the silence with an “um” followed by further silence.
Mediocrity. I replied.
She paused. “Can you repeat that? Did you say mediocrity? What do you mean by that?”
Have you ever felt like you’re not living up to the expectations you set for yourself? Like, you know you’re capable of great things, but do you ever wonder if you’ll get to that point? I know where I can be someday, but what if I never get there?
I swallowed hard and continued…
I fear being mediocre. Being less than what I know I am.
As a young twenty something with an uncertain future ahead, I fear mediocrity all of the time. I fear always being two steps behind of where I want to be. Always reaching, but never grabbing. Striving, but not thriving.
I have done some great things in my young life, as have you. But, I can’t help but wonder what else is out there for me. I can’t help but wonder if I’m taking the wrong steps, dating the wrong people, living in the wrong place.
Or worse, being the wrong person.
Success is often measured by the number on your paycheck, but to me, I find myself worrying less about that and more about non-financial fulfillments. I worry about the people I surround myself with, the late night thoughts that flood my brain, the guys I unexpectedly develop feelings for. I worry about never being completely satisfied. But, are we meant to be completely at peace with everything at once? Are we meant to experience ultimate nirvana? Is it possible to be living in your own form of utopia?
“Life is perpetually creative because it contains in itself that surplus which ever overflows the boundaries of the immediate time and space, restlessly pursuing its adventure of expression in the varied forms of self–realisation.”
Life is creative. It’s unexpected. Daunting, confusing, and beautiful all at once.
High school preps you for college (sort of). College preps you for the real world (not really). But once you’re in the real word, what’s next? It’s like suddenly you’re in an abyss of “Am I doing this right?”s with no one to fall back on but yourself.
As I sit on the patio of my favorite coffee shop, my mind is moving in a thousand different directions. To my left lies my phone pinging with work emails. To my right is the overpriced coffee I definitely didn’t need. There are job engine tabs open on my Google Chrome browser, packed full with opportunities that don’t seem to mesh well with me.
I know I’m not supposed to be picky. I know that not all dream opportunities are at the end of a straight and narrow path. Is it normal to wonder if I’ll ever get there?
I draw inspiration from random happenings. My stories are always crafted after the fact; after some deliberation, caffeine, and an inspiring Spotify playlist. Is this what life is supposed to be like? I may not know the significance of a random job or a confusing guy in the moment, but I can only hope it’s part of the windy path that will get me to where I need to be.
Rather, where I want to be.
Tomorrow is my 24th birthday. There is no Taylor Swift nor Blink 182 track to caption my Instagram picture with. *Sigh*. There’s also no guide titled, “Where you should be in life be when you turn 24.” Damnit.
Some friends are in long term relationships, others are still experiencing the stress that is dating different people, like myself. Some have 401ks and pensions, others stuff their closets with cash tips after a long night of bartending. Some are up late studying for grad school exams, others are up late hooking up with a random guy.
Some are content, others want more.
However, I think we all ask ourselves, “What is my forever?” We wonder what jobs we’ll keep, what people are worth investing in, and whether or not that plane ticket is worth splurging on. Most of us have no ties grounding us to one set plan or place, so I suppose my fear of mediocrity is normal and somewhat validated.
Life is a strange mix of people, places, and unexpected outcomes. I’ve never been one to plan, but I find comfort in knowing what’s next. But, yet, I’ve found that the best things always come without warning. I’ve found that the right people and opportunities come at the right times, even if it feels wrong in the moment.
We have the power to shape a beautiful life in the same way we have the power to shape a mediocre one. Not every career decision will be monumental, not every relationship will sweep you off your feet. I guess we have to experience the mediocre to experience the groundbreaking.
Ten years from now, I hope I’m working a job I love, coming home to a guy (or dog, most likely) I love even more. I hope to wonder why I ever worried. Why I ever doubted my abilities. Why I asked myself if I’ll ever make it.
So, for now, I guess I can be content with my half broken dresser and sub-par chicken piccata. I can be content with a mediocre situationship, content with feeling under qualified for every job posting I seemed to be interested in. Not every area of my life can be awesome at all times, but I guess that’s what makes me crave more awesomeness.
I’m not sure if this is where I’m supposed to be at age 24, but do we ever really know? Not sure. I guess we all experience life at a different pace. Interning while some are career-ing (poetic license???). Hooking up while some are proposing. Feeling uncertain while some are at ease.
I don’t know where I’m supposed to be or who I’m supposed to be with. I don’t know if my answer to the interviewees question helped me land a job or kicked me off the list entirely. I know less about life than I’d like, but then again, I’m only 24.
It’s unnerving, but if you feel the same way I do, thank GOD because that means I’m not the only one. Phew!
Hold onto the confidence you have in your abilities, because in my experience, it’s the confidence that has led me to the awesome life I’ve lived thus far. Even if sometimes it doesn’t feel so awesome.
Crave awesomeness over mediocrity. Crave awesome people, awesome places. You’ll encounter countless mediocre things in the process, but we need the mediocre things to experience the awesome things. You know, the groundbreaking, “this shit is LIT” kinds of things. Strive for the awesome life, but accept that it’s not going to come out of every decision, relationship, or job you encounter. It’s the mediocre that builds the foundation for something killer.
We’ll get there. Eventually.
In the meantime, you can find me attempting to fix my half broken dresser and perfecting my chicken piccata dish while laughing hysterically over this video with my roommate. The little things, you know.
“I think it’s much more interesting to live not knowing than to have answers which might be wrong. I have approximate answers and possible beliefs and different degrees of uncertainty about different things, but I am not absolutely sure of anything and there are many things I don’t know anything about, such as whether it means anything to ask why we’re here. I don’t have to know an answer. I don’t feel frightened not knowing things, by being lost in a mysterious universe without any purpose, which is the way it really is as far as I can tell.” – Richard Feynman
He usually texts at around 2am. Sometimes I’ll receive a sober phone call in the afternoon to “say hi,” and other times it’s a 4am, “Hey, what’s up?” text. Never consistent, never expected, never sought after.
“I’ll just have one more,” he promised. “I swear this is the last one.”
I laughed, knowing very well that this was definitely not the case. I pulled the Yuengling handle down and tipped the pint glass underneath.
“So, how many more beers is she worth?” I asked as I placed the beer in front of him.
He had been sitting at the bar for a while, chatting with me about this particular woman whom he had been sort-of seeing for the past month or so. I didn’t mind as I was debriefing about my guy frustrations as well. Continue reading