Buncha Bullshit: The One Where Stephanie Rants About The Logistics of Making a Major Life Change (AKA:Whiny Girl Rants about First World Problems)

Moving across the country on a low budget is a royal pain in the ass. And the logistics of such are putting a mild damper on my excitement. It’s more epic frustration than woe is me bullshit.

I’m about as frustrated as a crackwhore without any crack or whorish shenanigans.
I’m about as frustrated as a woman in the throes of heightened sexual tension without a partner to take it out on.
I’m about as frustrated as a politician without a Lewinsky.
I’m about as frustrated as the CIA without a brothel.
I’m about as frustrated as. As. Uhm. As someone who is frustrated.

(I just reread this and realized most of the the frustration examples are sexual in nature. Don’t read into that, please. Or do. Either way, I’m gonna stop talking now. (Except I’m not. But it won’t be about sex anymore. Why would I talk about sex? This is a motherfucking clean blog, damnit. (Fuckin’ hell, I have sex on the brain. I’m human after all. Sexbrain is NOT HELPING, SO MOTHERFUCKING STOP IT, BRAIN. (I really should delete this ridiculous parenthetical that’s only making things worse. But I’m not going to. Because this is me. Hi. My name is Stephanie, and I have sexbrain. Hi Stephanie. Welcome, Stephanie. Keep coming back – it works if you work it!))))

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This Poor Little Fucker. That’s me. Seriously, that’s exactly what I look like. I had my portrait done. For seriouses.

It’s all a buncha bullshit. And there’s a whole lotta bullshit that has to be figured out and sorted.

Buncha Bullshit that has to be Figured Out and Sorted

Emotional Bullshit – Let’s get this bullshit outta the way first. My family sucks. Seriously, they can all go eat a giant bag of dicks. I don’t know where my mother is. She may or may not be in town. I’ve seen both her and my sort of grandfather at local grocery stores before. They both ignored me. Pretended I wasn’t even there. It’s no wonder grocery stores are currently my strongest triggers for acute anxiety. But the mother…is unreliable and an untreated bipolar. And she’s probably not even in the state anymore. Who knows. My siblings and my aunt (who was always my second-favorite family member – at least on that side of the family) won’t speak to me anymore, because I won’t “get over” the physical, emotional, psychological, sexual abuse and go to my so-called father’s side now as he lays dying.

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So yeah. Fuck them. I’m not even gonna tell them I’m leaving. For all they know, I’ve been dead for years. Fuck. Them. Fuck. Them. Fuck. Them. And for all the Fuck Thems I type, there are a hundred more tears. Motherfuckers. Fuck Them for making me feel this way. Fuck them for throwing me out with yesterday’s garbage. Fuck Them. I don’t even love them anymore. Do I? Fuckin’ hell, I’ve gotten scary good at compartmentalization. Don’t get me wrong. I know I can’t run away from the damage they’ve done to me over the course of my life. (This is not about running away. This is about moving on to a place I’ve always wanted to be but allowed people to tell me no.) And though I can’t get them outta my head, I can get outta this town of pain and tangible memories.

Whew. There. That’s dealt with. Let’s move on to financial bullshit.

Financial Bullshit – I know I haven’t spoken about my (failed) marriage, and I don’t intend to go into details now. At this point, it’s not something I wish to speak of here. I bring it up now just to make a single point: I was unemployed when we separated. But I was the one left saddled with the entire mortgage and anything else that goes into the typical running of a household. Since he took half of the savings account, it didn’t take long for me to go through every cent as I looked for a job in a shitty economy and shitty area for good employment opportunities. By the time I landed something decent, aside from little temp jobs, I had about 200 bucks to my name. And I seriously thought I was going to go default on the mortgage. I didn’t. In fact, I’ve never missed a single payment. But what that means for me now? I don’t have savings. I have some cash stashed in a box where all of my tutoring cash goes. But it’s “nothing to write home about,” as the saying goes. I’m fine. I pay all of my bills (except the student loan one which I simply can’t pay at this point). And they’re paid on time. I don’t do without food, water, shelter, books, etc. So I work full-time for an enormous corporation, and I’m broke. But only when it comes to anything outside of the basics.

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Let’s see what the news is today. Oh yes, still broke as fuck. Off to work I go, like a good little mindless citizen!

However, this does throw a big wrench into the logistics of moving across country. Do y’all know how much it would cost to hire a moving company to move one set of bedroom furniture, about twenty boxes of books, some dishes and a couple of chests? The lowest quote I’ve gotten thus far was about $3,500. Their competitors said $4,500. U-Haul would be about $1,700, but then there is mileage and fuel costs to consider on top of that. So. What it looks like I’ll have to do is drive myself up there with my cats and whatever I can fit in the car. Leave the rest in storage. And sleep on an air mattress in the tiniest, cheapest apartment I can find to start out in.

This also means that I can’t afford to let people at work know about this until the very last minute. Because I can’t afford to quit my job while I tidy up the house for the market and dig in deep on a job search in Seattle. It also means I can’t just move up there and find a job that way, because I’d have greater odds of landing something good if I were actually there. But I can’t do that.

Then there’s the question of where I’ll live in the interim.

Housing Bullshit – As the regular Peopleaneous know, I’m in the (lengthy) process of preparing my house to put on the market. This involves the ex, as his name is still on the deed. And the house is filled with a lot of his stuff. (Including the guns that I couldn’t get rid of, because they weren’t mine…and I did not want to deal with the explosion that would ensue if I’d gotten rid of them.) So. He’s been over a lot on weekends and evenings. Going through his stuff. Culling stuff. Fixing stuff (very very slowly) and occasionally sabotaging my efforts by doing shit like parking in the middle of the yard after days of heavy rain and rutting the fucker up. That will do wonders for the curb appeal. Fucking wonderful. Anyway. ANYFUCKINGWAY. This isn’t about him. And I said I didn’t wanna talk about him. And I don’t. So. The point is, this is lengthy.

And I have an issue that I don’t know how to resolve.

Issue the First: Selling the house is going to be difficult. First, the market it is in has done nothing but go down down down since I/we bought the place. Second, he never maintained things. And I wasn’t allowed to, in the sense that… No. No. I’m just gonna leave that there. I’m not going to make this about him. He used to be great, and then he lost his way. And then we both changed. I’m gonna leave it at that. Point is, the house wasn’t kept up. Things are broken. Things are damaged. Things have been neglected. Then the other day, the fucking city tore down a tree. Fucking ass sucking dickwhistles. And in the few years I’ve been there by myself, I was mostly so mired down in a bottomless pit of the darkest depression I’ve known. Too far down to even think it was worth getting out of bed to take care of the house. I was in total fuck you, fuck me, fuck the world, fuck the universe, fuck the house, fuck the job, fuck it all mode.

Issue the Second: What if the house sells before I land a job in Seattle? Does that mean I have to sign a 6-month contract on some apartment in town? That would make me lose a lot of money if I found a job just after moving. Plus, who the fuck wants to move twice?

Issue the Third: What if I land a job before the house sells? How do I finagle that? I can’t afford to rent property in Seattle while simultaneously paying a mortgage. Seriously, it’s not like I’m CEO material. I won’t be making that kinda money. So how does that work?

Which leads me to jobby bullshit.

Jobby Bullshit – Should I even be looking for jobs at this point? Is it premature? It’s premature, isn’t it? Wouldn’t it be foolish not to? Maybe someone out there thinks I’m worth waiting for. It’s possible, right? Or maybe I could land a job and let them know that when the house sells, I’ll need to fly back down for paperwork and shit. But that brings me back to the issue of rent plus mortgage. No can do, buckaroo. The good news is that I’ve secured three solid references. Two of you read this blog on occasion. Be good to me, fellas! Pretty please.

Oh, yes. More Jobby Bullshit. Another issue I’m having is that I’d like to pursue something that I may actually enjoy. Something with writing or editing would be fucking epic. I can even write without using “fuck” all the time. Promise. The problem is, my deagent-orange-wasting-time-250x127grees are not in English or Journalism or any of those other “required” degrees for writing jobs. The problem is none of my work experience is writing related, aside from some freelance gigs on the side. The problem is, I don’t have writing samples to submit. And I sure as fuck don’t want any potential employers finding this spot: a. because of all the fucking that goes on around here and 2. because then I’d never be able to rant or vent about work!

But I don’t want to do the kind of thing I’m doing right now. And I also don’t want to do the whole Executive Assistant/Administrative thing. I’ve done it. I’m damn fucking good at it. But it’s no fun. It’s draining. It’s meaningless to me. And it makes me feel the time, my life, tick tick ticking away.

 ~

So I don’t know what to do. More specifically, I don’t know how to approach all of this. I’m sure there are other issues that I had in mind before I began this post. But I’ve been interrupted countless times because work. And also because my mind is in a dirty, dirty place right now. So it’s hard to focus. Anyway, this fucker is nearly 2,000 words already. Probably about 1,900 more than it really needs to be! But my name is not Concisephanie for a reason!

I would like to ask something of my dear Peopleaneous.

If there are any of you out there who have done this before and have a clearer vision on the logistics of something like this, please hit me up. I’d love some advice.

If there are any of you out there who have made major career switches without the official qualifications to do so, I’d love some tips there as well.

And if any of you are in Seattle and hiring, pick me! MEMEMEMEMEME!

In the meantime, I’m going to keep trudging forward. This is my year. I’m taking charge of my life. And I’m still holding on to Rollins’ words.

Rollins

 GO!

(Please forgive any egregious errors. I don’t feel like re-reading this right now. Ha! Some copy-editor!)

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Letters from a Happy Asshole

Dear Mom,

Did you know it was you who taught me? I bet you don’t know that, even though I told you so. You taught me so much:

  • how to smile through abuse
  • how to laugh in spite of pain
  • how to remain gentle in stormy seas

You sent me out into the world believing that it was worth enduring misfortune and pain, poverty and abuse. And so I smiled. I was such a happy child, even when my heart was heavy and I was stricken with fear and doubt. I had such a gentle and giving spirit, a ready smile for anyone. Everyone. You remember, don’t you? How I had such a hard time steering clear of strangers? It took me a little while to learn that people don’t mean well after all.

But wait, you didn’t teach me any of that, did you? When did you smile? When did any smile ever reach your eyes? When were you ever playful or joyful or ebullient? You weren’t, were you? And I forever battled your demons because you wouldn’t. No, you gave up ages ago. Before you even had us, I suspect. You know what you taught me?

  • how to keep it all in
  • how to withdraw from the world
  • how to lose faith
  • how to criticize myself and everyone else
  • how to hide my ideas, my mind
  • how to deny myself
  • how to submit
  • how to give up

Why are you so damn happy all the time?

Mom?

Stop smiling so much. There’s nothing to smile about.

But we’re alive, aren’t we?

Who cares if we’re alive? Everything hurts. My back hurts. My feet hurt.

At least you have feet. (I meant it so sincerely when I said things like that to you. But you you hated it. You said it was cruel. That I was being intentionally cruel. That it’s useless to try cheering you up. Remember?)

Whatever. I’m sick to death of cleaning up after you people. I sacrifice Everything, and Nobody cares.

I care.

Whatever. Leave me alone. I’m going to bed.

whatever

I followed you to bed, putting my sister on my lap. I’m a ventriloquist now, and she’s my dummy. I used your eyeliner and lipstick to draw on her face to make her look the part.

We put on a show for you. I’m in full form now, laughing, cutting up, being a smartass. Telling jokes and making faces.

You’re laughing! It’s working! You’re crying… Oh no, now you’re crying again.

You’re so sweet. You were always so sweet. And funny. How’d you get to be so funny?
Leave me alone now. I’ll be okay. Don’t worry.

You better not have ruined my makeup. And wash your sister’s face.
(Rolling over in bed now, facing the wall.) Goodnight.

I hugged you and kissed you, anyway. And I begged you to be okay. Please cheer up, mom. We love you. Doesn’t that matter more than anything?

I’m sorry.
But I did tell you to leave me alone.
Wash your sister’s face.
Goodnight.

How many days and nights did we repeat some variation of this until I gave up? I couldn’t fight your demons alone. I needed your help. How many times did you watch me sobbing for you, begging you to talk to me. Play with me. Read with me. You said I’d be better off just forgetting about you. How could you say that?

And how dare you for getting angry when I did give up trying to fix you. And how dare you for abandoning me. Yes, you taught me much.

I was such a happy little asshole. That’s what I was to you, wasn’t it? The little asshole thorn in your side who just wouldn’t quit fucking smiling no matter what life threw at her. Did you ever stop to think that I smiled for you? It doesn’t matter anymore. I was always the happy little asshole to you. The one who had the nerve to smile in the face of adversity. The one who dared ask you to be a mother.

Just do me a favor, would ya? Don’t come back. Don’t. I can’t do it again.

~

Dear Classmates,

To the little girl that broke my heart and my nerve: do you know how long it took for me to work up the nerve to approach you? You looked so lonely and sad. And I was so shy. But we were both alone at recess, and I wanted to help you. I needed to make you smile.

Do you know how long it took for me to work up the nerve? How difficult it was? How my heart lodged in my throat as I approached you? How much courage it took for me to ask five little words of you in the softest voice? Will you be my friend?

Do you know what it did to me when you replied,

No.

and walked away?

My little soul was crushed. I cried so very much. Do you want to know something else?

That was the last time I ever approached anyone. That was the last time I ever made the first move.

I know, now, that you were probably hurting at least as much as I was, if not more. But my little heart couldn’t see past the pain then.

To Marshall: I’m sorry I never worked up the nerve to approach you. To tell you that I knew it was you. I recognized your handwriting. On the Secret Admirer card. But I had already lost trust and faith in people. I thought it was a joke, you see. A scam. I learned later that I hurt your feelings, ignoring your gesture.

To the boy at the dance: I didn’t even want to be there. I had been forced to go. People were starting to worry…at my lack of friends and growing social anxiety. I had been made fun of far too much by now, and I couldn’t. I wanted to trust you, when you asked me to dance. But I couldn’t. I just knew it was a joke. So I went inside and stuffed my face until the party was over. That’s the first time I remember medicating with food.

~

Dear Marie,

Why did you ask me why I smile? Every day, at least once a day? You were a grownass woman in her forties. Why do you feel a need to rob a teenager of her smile?

Every day I smiled and greeted you with a happy countenance and hope for a good day. And every day, you shot me down. Confronting me in angry tones,

Why are you so happy?
I mean, really. Look at you. What do you have to be so happy about, anyway?

I woke up this morning.

Ugh.

Would you rather I told you, “This is my mask, and it helps me get through the day”? I suspect you would have liked that, to know that I shared a fraction of your misery. But no, I was too busy trying.

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It took me a couple of years, but I finally stopped. Smiling at you. You didn’t deserve my smiles. But then, one day, I started smiling at you again. Out of spite. Because fuck you, that’s why.

And again, I was the Happy Asshole.

Thanks, Marie. For reminding me of her.

~

Dear James and Everyone Else I hurt in Jr. High & High School,

You told me one day, later on in high school, that I had been a bitch to you. I’m sorry. I really am.

I was afraid of you. I didn’t trust you. I never did. And I still didn’t. Hell, I still wouldn’t. Even now. I had been bitten so many times by then, that I used meanness as a defense mechanism. To keep people as far away from me as possible.

But at least I started smiling again. Greeting you. Refusing to take my pain and inner turmoil out on you and everyone else.

Thank you, for being so honest with me that day. I needed that dose of awareness. It hurt to know that I’d been hurtful. I’ll never forget it.

~

Dear You,

Please allow me – and anyone else – the right to be down sometimes. Please don’t beat me with your happy stick and try to force your idea of happiness on me.

You see, I’m fighting really hard. No, I mean it. Really fucking hard. To lift myself out of this funk. It’s a daily battle, and a tough one. And while I’m thankful for words of encouragement and positivity, it hurts when you’re dismissive. As though I don’t have the right to be down because it offends you.

I understand now, why it hurt my mother for me to say things like, “well, at least you have legs!” But I was a child, and I didn’t realize it was dismissive of her pain. I thought I was being encouraging, but all she heard was “your pain isn’t valid.”

So be encouraging of each other. Be positive. But try not to be so fucking militant about it. Just as my depression isn’t an attack on you, your positivity shouldn’t be an attack on me.

Live and let live and Kumbaya, and all that.

~

Dear Me,

You’re at risk of no longer being the Happy Asshole, but instead just an asshole. And if that happens, they win. Is that what you want?

So keep smiling at work. Keep saying goodmorning to the world and all its inhabitants. Keep telling off-color jokes and being a raging smartass. It’s fun. It makes people laugh, and it cheers you up to do it.

Don’t let them destroy the last remaining vestiges of you.

Cling to life. Cling to joy, even if you can only find scraps of moments here and there. Those scraps count. Those scraps matter. Those scraps are what keep you coming back for more.

You matter. You probably won’t think so in the morning. Or even an hour from writing this.

So keep reminding yourself. And try to believe people when they say nice things about you.

Don’t be an asshole. It’s no fun without the happy.

~

Signed,
The Happy Asshole

How’s this for a Headline: Today Sucks Ass.

Today sucks ass. Seriously. In other news, it also blows.

I have a headache from hell. And I’ve also crashed hard from whatever high I was on last week. I’m back to hating the world and, more specifically, myself.

It’s a combination of things, I’m sure. For once, I felt dread building as the weekend drew to a close. That’s simultaneously a good thing and a bad thing. Good because it means I was dreading the right thing – work – instead of how I usually dread being alone with myself on the weekends. Bad because there’s nothing I can do about it. At least not so long as I need to work in hell. I mean Corporate America.

But it’s not only work. I can also feel the onset of holiday blues. Like what seems to be the majority of people, this used to be my favorite time of year.

Not so anymore. No.

What used to be my favorite holiday and day of the year – Thanksgiving – is now a day to dread. Spending Thanksgiving alone is not something to envy, peoplleaneous. No matter how hectic or stressful your holiday with family and friends may be, please…I implore you…please never tell one of us who spends it alone that we’re lucky. Please don’t do that. Because the last thing in the world that it feels like is a stroke of good fortune.

Last year, I cooked. For the first time in a while, I did it up. Big ass turkey, cornbread dressing, pecan pies…the works. It was a great diversion while the preparations lasted, which I managed to drag out for a few days. But it was bittersweet, of course. Things like that are meant to be shared. And though I have much to be thankful for, it’s difficult to dredge those reasons up during the ultimate season of family and togetherness.

Christmas was never great for me. It was usually a time spent in stark reminder of our poverty, as children. Mother’s palpable depression and feelings of failure, vociferously lamented. Sister whining and begging for things. Brother stealing any things he wanted but didn’t receive. Me in the middle trying to soothe broken spirits and remind them of what the holiday is supposed to be about. It never worked. I can only remember two Christmases that weren’t like that, but it was still there. In the background. Until everyone just say fuckitall and stopped getting together.

And now. Years later. They’re getting together, alright. Only…I’m no longer invited. In fact, I was informed that I’m specifically uninvited. Because I won’t can’t seem to forgive him. The one I’m supposed to call father.

November has arrived, and it’s all anyone wants to talk about today. At the office. November. Thanksgiving preparations. Gift buying. Black Friday plans. Pinterest recipes.

Yeah. It’s official. I’m back on the downswing, and I’m sad. I mean, really fucking sad. Wishing I hadn’t woken up this morning sad. Angry and Anxious and Depressed and Aching from arthritis and fibro (I mean what the fuck is that, anyway). Woo. I need to shut the fuck up with this whining and find something to do.

I’m gonna write about anime later, I think. Because it’s slow at work, and my brain desperately needs diversion.