Bothering me…

Since graduating in December I have had a lot of things on my mind. So much has been bothering me of late both personal and otherwise. However, I have not had the courage to write about anything. It wasn’t until a friend of mine suggested that I write down three things that are most bothering me and then write out a paragraph for which one, explaining why it bothers me. I thought that was a good idea so here I go.

Negativity:  Ever since I was in high school I have always had a cynical/negative attitude toward everything in my life. I always seem to have something to say, or have an overwhelming need to have the last word. I don’t particularly understand how some people can be positive and see the the best of everything, and yet here I am negative, or as one old friend said to me once , “you’re a dark cloud.” Ever since I graduated I have found that in regards to job applications, interviews, or the lack of movement on either, I am increasingly negative and moody. On Facebook friends have tried to assist expressing variants of “I’m sure things will turn around.” Part of me wants to believe that, but another part of me is saying, “yeah, whatever.” It is this, the negative part of me that I want to, at the very least, quell in some fashion. But how? Be more positive? Wake up and shout to my bedroom ceiling, “I’m going to be positive?” I’ve done that before. Maybe I should keep doing it. Being negative certainly does not help my relationships with people. I’ve been called an asshole and a jackass and I know exactly why – it’s my negative attitude and outlook on life. It gets in the way of everything.

Life post-college: I’ve graduated from college three times. The last two times have been horrific. I have struggled to find a job that utilizes my degree or skills I have acquired. These days I’m either under-qualified or overqualified. I don’t get it. I know the job market is sluggish. Employers are hiring, but there is just something about either my resume or application that turns employers off. I have struggled for the past few months to crack the code. What exactly IS it that I’m doing wrong. I have asked countless people but no one seems to be able to help. Am I looking for jobs? Yes. Every. Single. Day.  Job postings like selling insurance, or a door-to-door salesperson. What is it that I want to do? I want to help people navigate social media. I would love to work in social media for a company, it doesn’t matter if the company be large or small. Why social media? I know it, I love it and I feel at home in the world of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. I proudly have a certification in HootSuite Social Media Management. I just want a real chance to use my skills.

One of my biggest fears – having my degrees just sit on the wall. I want to be able to use my degrees and I fear that they will just remain framed, on the wall, and collect dust. Do universities refund students that cannot or do not find jobs with their education? They should. See? I’m being negative! Make it stop.

Needing Closure: I have this annoying and persistent need for closure, especially when things go sour and I cannot make amends. When I make a mistake I always try to fix things to the best of my ability. Last fall during my last semester I had a terrific internship with a local marketing firm as a social media intern. This internship should have been the door to a “real” job. It could have landed me a job. Sadly I did not make a great show of myself and finished my last semester of college with less than pleasant feedback from my manager, the company’s communication director. I didn’t perform as a team player, I was shy, didn’t ask the necessary questions, and because I was so frazzled I made huge mistakes. There was no closure. There was nothing at the end. No good-bye. No “thanks, but no thanks.” Nothing. I did graduate but there was always a cloud hovering over me. I do not regret my time as an intern. I learned a lot of valuable things about the industry, about marketing, and most importantly about myself. I just wish I could apologize and prove myself a team player, eager to learn.

Why do I need closure? I just wish I could just redo that whole thing….

 

 

The ongoing battle with anxiety..

Last night I made a firm decision–to stop taking my antidepressants. Sadly, I’ve been on them long enough to notice the two nasty side-effects I cannot stand: too many cravings for food and weight gain. Three years ago, when I was a super-stressed college student, a nurse practitioner advised me to take Celexa, to assist with my anxiety and hopefully calm my nerves. I’m glad to say it worked, but it also made me gain an unheard of amount of weight. Now that I have been taking the meds again, after a horrific attempt at taking Paxil, I have decided to simply stop taking the pills and find another, more healthful, alternative to dealing with my anxiety issues. I am tired of the constant food cravings and more than sick of watching the numbers on both the scale and my waistline go up.

I have no idea where the anxiety came from and that troubles me. I don’t know what the trigger is or was, thus I cannot come to terms with these strange manifestations of anxiety, stress and all the health issues that come with having both.

I actually have an embarrassing story about how my anxiety got the better of me. Three years ago, my boyfriend and I were out house hunting and I didn’t feel at all well. I was incredibly nervous and my stomach was in painful knots. Now I will admit, I was plagued by stress about going to a four year university (I just just graduated from community college) and I guess the nervousness spilled over into my daily life. To make this house hunt worse, my stomach started to cramp and I had the overwhelming need to use the restroom. Now this is where the panic set it in–would I be able to make it to a restroom in time before I had an accident?! Fortunately, I found a lovely and clean bathroom to use at a house we were looking at with a realtor. Since that experience, I travel with a shopping bag with back-up pair of clothes just in case the need should arise. My mother has joking dubbed it my “purse.” I have never had to make use of the extra clothing but to my mind it is “insurance” in case something awful happens.

Now, I have been tested for everything under the sun, I even had a colonoscopy when I was twenty-four — the results returned absolutely nothing. So what is the big deal?!

All I know how is that I have research to do in finding a better way to deal with my stress. Turning to food and eating ones emotions isn’t healthy, nor does it feel good. I want to feel good about myself again. No, I NEED to feel good about myself.

I’m sticking to my guns though, the pills are out.

Coming to terms

Time has gone by and I have not touched my blog in so long. I’m not sure who I should apologize to more, WordPress, the blog, or myself?! I should be more mindful of keeping up the craft of writing. After all, I have a degree in English and a minor in writing, and I have complained so much that I don’t know what I can do with my degree. I should write.

Sadly, writing has not been on my mind very much. I have been incredibly busy with starting a new chapter of my life with my partner, Cleve. He and I have started a new adventure – moving in together. He signed on the dotted line for a condo nearly a month ago, and since then the process of “moving in” has been both exciting and incredibly terrifying, not to mention stressful! A new place, a new neighborhood, and new responsibilities. Now that I’m actually living with him at his new place, I have to take care of some bills. I cannot convey the immense pleasure I had in actually setting up utilities in my own name. Electric, gas, and cable (television and internet) that are mine, it is something of a right of passage, no? Not only does the responsibility make me feel like I’m growing up, it adds luster to my credit which is, as it should be, always good!  We also scoured furniture stores in town, in an attempt to gauge what our taste was, and after searching and searching we found a lovely grouping of furniture, it arrives today!!

In addition to new digs, I have also started a new job working for Verizon as a Customer Service Representative. The job itself has been quite a learning experience. From the training environment onto the production floor, the past month or so has tested me in various ways. My patience, resolve, and understanding have all been put to the absolute limit. Being a CSR is not for everyone and the only way to truly find out if indeed you are cut out is, of course, to be on the floor taking LIVE calls from customers. In my roll with Verizon, I am the be all and end all of technical support. With the varied tools the company has reps using, we are charged with assisting customers with any number of problems regarding the devices on their respective accounts.  That means getting cozy with many operating systems, juggling two computer screens, and a laundry list of programs to: notate a customer’s account, research an issue, and make sure the customer’s issue is resolved in a timely manner. This all this going on with moving in to a new place, buying furniture, and applying for utilities my nerves and stress level have skyrocketed beyond normal levels.

I have had to come to terms with stress and exactly how to manage it. I have now ventured into meditation, yoga, and I am walking again! So the past few weeks have been a big stressor, so what?! I have found new ways of dealing with the stress, and a new resolve to become a happier, healthier person.  I have also continued on my doctor prescribed Gluten Free diet, and I have found the more I shop for groceries myself the more options I have to make healthy meals!

I have also decided to enter counseling, so that I might be able to talk to someone about the things that trigger my stress and anxiety. For someone who doesn’t like to talk about things, I am quite introverted, this is a very BIG deal. My first session with a social worker was very productive and quite helpful. The lady I spoke with even congratulated me on opening up enough to speak with her, small victories.

My counseling session is after Easter and I’m actually excited about it.

 

Back again

So, thanks to bad sectors in my Mac’s hard drive, I had to take a few days out and wait for repairs to my beloved computer. The geeks at the Apple Store were very nice and brought my MacBook back from the brink. I have a new hard drive and they were kind enough to clean it as well, it looks brand new. That all happened on Wednesday with my mom nonetheless. It’s really weird, usually mom hates shopping with me; however, our latest trip to the mall proved to be quite fun. Mom helped me with the repair cost, we bought tea from Teavana (which I highly recommend,) we also stopped by Macy’s and I even got her to finally break down and buy herself a computer – a MacBook Pro, one of the new models. I am so proud of her, finally, she has a computer of her own again!

On the job front, I still haven’t heard from Verizon. As the old saying goes, “No news is good news” but I don’t think that is the case here. I was told I should hear something within a week of the interview? The training course starts August 13th, so I figure I would have heard something by now?! I’ve been told not to give up hope, that I still may hear something next week?! I just do not understand it, where am I going wrong? Do I interview badly, do my references not pan out? Something is preventing me from being a prime job candidate, I’m just not sure what that something is?!

The stress of wondering has caused me issues with my sleep pattern, hence I’m updating my WordPress at 4:00a.m.

Stress and Food

I got on the scale this morning and was stunned by the number that I saw. 214.2 – two hundred and fourteen pounds. I’ve not been this heavy since I was probably in my early twenties.

Admittedly, the last few weeks and months have been stressful. Sadly, not sleeping well, and having little or no energy, has made exercising almost impossible. It dawned on me what I was doing only after, after, I had a loaded baked potato at 1:00 this morning. Stress has taken my life hostage, and the trouble with finding a full-time job has made matters worse.

I eat when I’m bored, I eat when I can’t sleep. I constantly crave sweets or a combination of salty and sweet. My go-to snack has been those trail mix bars with the chocolate in them. I feel so guilty. I’m frustrated and angry, I vowed I would never return to the 200s.

It’s been said the first step in any recovery is admitting you have a problem. “Hello, my name is Chris – I am a stress eater.” I suppose that is nearly the same as being an overeater, which, I guess, would make me a perfect candidate for Overeaters Anonymous.

Ironically, my boyfriend and I poke fun at each other about our individual weight issues. We will squeal like pigs and make ‘oink’ sounds whenever we eat something unhealthy. The joke is on us. Here lately I find all of it, the jokes and other garbage, stupid and particularly hurtful. I guess it’s only fitting since the scale confirmed my worst fear – weight gain.

I can’t stand the way I feel anymore, sluggish, lethargic, sad, depressed, stressed, worried.

I need help…

A chance to breathe

It seems as if I’ve not had any free moments to tell you what I’ve been up to.

Truthfully, I haven’t.

School has taken up my life with the stress is still as high as ever.

I did go for my colonoscopy a few weeks ago, the results came back negative. As wonderful as that is, the issues that plague me are still present. At least my colon is functioning as it should be. Now, to get to the root of the issue. Is it my diet, the stress or something else all together?! All I do know is that both September and October have been crazy months for me.

In regards to school, I’m not doing as terribly as I thought. I’ve had some very good results from several mid-terms – that’s been very surprising. Even though my stress and panicking about school etc., things haven’t been as awful as I have made them out to be. Soon enough, Halloween will be over and November’s crispness will set in. It will be Thanksgiving soon enough. I cannot tell you how much I long to be rid of this semester. Granted it started off fine, but the stress of life and the pressure to do well has all come to a head. Usually I can deal with it all, but of late it seems to be harder and harder.

That’s life I guess. It’s all how we roll along and deal with stress. I need to learn how to manage it better.

The one thing that has been a joy, is seeing all the colors of fall. The leaves are changing, the air is cooler and it all makes for a delightful postcard. Although, I am quite jealous that people in the northeast got a rare pre-Halloween snow. That would ease my mood quite nicely – snow. But nevertheless, fall will give way to Winter in no time and I will be able to breathe, rest, and relax before yet another semester is on my heels in January.

Who’s getting into the Halloween festivities? Got your costume in order? Ready for the parties and trick-or-treating?! Whatever you get into tomorrow night, do have fun! I’m not exactly what tomorrow will entail for me. Probably candy duty, as the children from the neighborhood will be out in full force. That’s the great thing about fall, as soon as Halloween is over, we get in full “Thanksgiving mode.” I’m sure Turkey day themed television ads will be rolled out immediately on Tuesday morning!

I can’t wait!