Sunday, February 26, 2012

she wants a coat made of my leather

Sometimes it's really hard to look at things and say, 'this is really good, I wouldn't change a thing.' Maybe it's in my nature to always want to fix things or make things better or maybe I'm just incapable of feeling content. It's not always a bad thing unless the thing you keep tinkering with doesn't effect just you. That and it makes it impossible to feel completely satisfied. It often goes back to that whole idea of living in the moment. Often I just need to remind myself that I need to enjoy the things happening instead of looking forward to the things to come. 
It was a really great week. My internship went well including getting some feedback on how I've been doing over the semester as well as being included in a meeting regarding improvements that can be made within the organization and some of my suggestions held weight and were included in things to be considered. I felt a little off during classes this week, but that can be attributed to my odd mood at the beginning of this week. I just didn't have as much motivation as I usually do. Outside of school and placement I spent some time with my sister and her boyfriend and enjoyed the sun being out with walks. After placement on Thursday I drove straight to Louisville to see J, pick up my laptop and see a friend visiting from Detroit. Jason's school load is really picking up with several exams over the end of the week and next week. So he spent some time studying we took a time out to hang out and then back to studying for his exam the next morning. I really don't think I could make it through the nursing program he's going through. He was saying words and processes about the body to me I wouldn't even know how to spell. I'll stick to social work and policy. Friday after dropping him off for his exams I excitedly got in my car to pick up my laptop and then realized they needed my external hard drive to restore it, which he said we take a few hours. I ended up running errands and coming back home in the process. Before heading to Best Buy for a second time I got an email from my advisor about legal aid in Louisville for my field placement next year. I called my prospective placement and discussed what I needed to do before scheduling an interview. I'm still waiting to hear back from the other two placements in hopes to schedule them all on the same day. The social worker sounded extremely nice, she was quite talkative and discussed the types of things they do there. I got off the phone feeling positive about the talk but a little nervous that it isn't going to be exactly what I want in a placement. I'll be glad to talk to the others and see what the best fit will be. I know I'll find the right placement. Tangent. After getting my laptop J made dinner and we had friends over for nerdy board games. We had a really good time, lots of laughs, too much wine, the usual. Saturday was kind of a lazy day and kind of unproductive. We procrastinated studying by sleeping in, making lunch, netflix and going for a walk. It was all worth it. Saturday night I got to see my friend from Detroit who is dating a guy here in Louisville. Apparently all the good ones are here in Louisville, and us Michigan girls just can't resist. Oddly though both of our boyfriends are originally from Michigan. We had a lot of fun just catching up, drinking beer and watching UFC, which I feel like I haven't done in ages. We also commiserated about long distance dating. We came to the conclusion that it sucks and takes patience but it's worth it if it's the right person.   
Today has been kind of lazy as well, sleeping in (it's this apartment I swear), making food and finally getting around to school work. And now I'm back to internetting and messing around. Oops. I'm delaying the inevitability of that stupid drive back to Nashville, which I will be making very soon. 
Well, I hope everyone has a wonderful week.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

insert Gossip lyrics here

It's not like today has been overly trying or bad things happened, on the contrary I got to spend some time with a friend and sleep in late, but I still have the looming black cloud hanging around me. She only comes out when I'm by myself or really in my own head. I will call her Norma. It's kind of like when Dexter talks about his 'dark passenger' and how it's always there reminding him of the person he is and keeping him from ever ridding himself of the bad things he does. That's like an extreme version of Norma, because I don't feel homicidal (unless stuck in Nashville traffic) I just have Norma always tagging along trying to ruin my mood. Most of the people in my life are aware that I struggle with staying positive at times because they've had to put up with my crazy ass. Some people stick around and some don't. To hell with them if they don't. I also think Norma is the reason that I am drawn to people that are fragile or emotionally vulnerable because I can relate. I like to be helpful and 'fix' people's problems, even if it's just by listening. Admittedly I have an insane amount of patience for people and their problems but somedays I want nothing to do with hearing about other people's problems. NOTHING. After getting into the habit of always being the listener though, people begin to expect you to do just that. 99.9% of the time that's what I'm going to do and it's going to make me happy. 0.01% of the time I'm going to sit there, say nothing and become really aggravated. This is one of those weeks that I've felt that way off and on. No matter how many times I tell myself I'm being irrational, I still get irrational. No matter how much encouragement I get, I still don't like myself. Norma is a bitch. 
Anyway....back to the regular stuff. This week I struggled with not having a laptop because I've gotten into so much of a habit if having it when studying, even when I don't need it, that it kind of threw me for a loop. That and being without Spotify when I study makes me a sad girl. (I know I'm SO deprived, right?Just like those kids in Africa) So much of the time I went to the computer lab at school or tried (and failed) to read at home. Thankfully my sister has not needed her macbook and is letting my borrow it. I'm not technologically savvy so there would be no need for me to ever own a Mac but they are just so damn cool that it's crossed my mind. Tuesday night my car kept stalling for no reason so Wednesday morning I sat in Firestone for several hours while they replaced a Mass air flow sensor that seemed to fix the problem. Damn I wish I had my Dad's mechanical skills. Thursday aside from the show at 12th and Porter I was able to attend the NASW's legislative committee meeting and talk about the bills that are in front of the general assembly or committees in TN that will effect marginalized people. There are some 1,100 bills right now, they narrowed it to about 130 high priority bills. Some of the bills are trying to drug test unemployment recipients, drug test people receiving public welfare, criminalizing homeless acts, and my personal favorite is taking away public assistance if your child doesn't perform well in school. Oh Tennessee, you make me want to puke a little. Some of them won't pass, some of them will and we will do what we can to make the best of it. The legislative committee was cool because these people nerd out on this stuff as much as I do, or more. Friday we (my policy group and I) went down to legislative plaza to talk to some people that are camped out there for Occupy Nashville. We got a better idea of how the current legislation that is going through the approval process is going to effect their cause. We spoke to one of the men that spoke in front of the TN senate about the bill. He was extremely well-informed and passionate about the movement. It got me all fired up and we ended up talking to him for over an hour. I'm so glad we went down there to get another perspective. Saturday I watched Jill and some people she works with willingly jump into a 39 degree lake for a Special Olympics fundraiser then we went to Thai. I liked both, I suspect Thai was more fun than the lake for her. 
I've been procrastinating this reading long enough. Time to go read about depression. Ironic.
Hope you have an excellent week. I get to visit J and see a friend visiting from Detroit so my week is going to be awesome. 

Friday, February 17, 2012

You ain't no rockstar....

Last night, at 12th and Porter, I started thinking about careers, jobs, employment or whatever you want to call it. I thought about the people I know in Nashville that have these really amazing jobs in the music industry. How cool would it be to get to work with bands, play an instrument or sing for a living? Pretty damn cool I think. Now I know there are, as with any job, some downfalls of the trade. Musicians don’t always have consistent work and when they do it often means late nights and a lot of traveling. The traveling part might not be so bad actually but not the way that most musicians travel, in a cramped van or bus. When you’re a musician in Nashville the city seems much smaller. It’s an incestuous industry where people know or have worked with everyone else. It’s like 2 degrees of separation rather than 6. That and you get those people that are unethical and use people on a regular basis just to catch a break or get ahead. All that said, it’s still a really cool job. These people are passionate about what they are doing EVERY DAY. Anyway, back at 12th and Porter, after being interrupted in thought with a drink offer by some random dude the conversation headed that way. Turns out he works for a non-profit (same one I did) here in Nashville as a case manager for adults and he hates his job. He’s burnt out and complained that he doesn’t make enough money. (Hello! It’s a non-profit, you’re not making it out of the $30K range with a Bachelors.) After telling him what I’m in school for he just kind of shook his head and gave me that look like, ‘you poor, sad, sack.’ I kind of wanted to hit him but if I got close enough to do that he would have insisted on continuing to touch me. Something about Southerners and an ignorance of personal space and unwanted physical contact is just beyond some of them. I don’t care if it’s friendly stay out of my bubble! Anyway, random tangent. So in discussing (or yelling over the music) I determined that social work is MY music industry. Social work is what keeps me going EVERY DAY. Ok, so it’s not glamorous or that much fun to converse about (or read about probably) but it’s IT for me. No one wants to talk about that kickass conference they went to about Motivational Interviewing or Evidence Based Practice nor can you name-drop and actually sound cool when you’re talking about ‘the director over at such and such agency’ but there are some parallels. Networking is a huge one as well as playing nice. I don’t care if it’s a bassist or a legislator you aren’t a fan of, you’ve got to make nice because one day you might need their help. I’m never going to be a famous musician, or singer (not even a sub-par singer) but I am going to be a rock star of social work. And when I sign off on paperwork I’m going to pretend like someone’s asked me for my autograph. Hell I may even throw out a strut or a pelvic thrust just for good measure. Bam! Take that Office of Youth Development, oh and here’s that completed grant application. Strut away.
A girl can dream, can’t she?

Sunday, February 12, 2012

smiling, smiling, always smiling

Hard-drive going out on my laptop=suckballs
Warranty=win. I'm so glad that I bought the warranty when I bought my laptop because I'm college poor right now and can't afford to buy a new computer. Going without a laptop for weeks isn't going to be much fun but I'll survive, I'm just glad that in a few weeks I'll have my little buddy back with minor financial cost. 
Anyway, aside from my computer breaking the rest of the week was excellent. I kicked ass, along with my group partner (of course), on the huge presentation that I had for my psychopathology class. I got a 100% on the paper that I turned in on Wednesday (which was almost a disaster due to the whole computer crapping out thing) and I aced the quiz that I took today. So far school has been going really well. Doing well doesn't necessarily make me feel less stressed but all of the stressing that I've been doing has paid off. Aside from class I've been feeling good about my internship. I've been doing the legwork on a project for my supervisor and she's been really appreciative. It's going to culminate into a presentation in front of the Workforce Investment Board and then eventually go on to the state school board. I won't be presenting but I'll be doing the research to put into it. It's kind of nerdy and exciting to me. 
Monday I babysat for the couple I always do. By the time I got there the kids were already sleeping so I ended up doing school work for three hours and getting paid for it. Win. When I have kids I'm definitely employing a college student as a babysitter, it's a good cycle to continue. Wednesday I met up with a friend for drinks on our side of town. We always have really good talks, I'm thankful for good friends like him.The rest of my time during the week was spent waiting until Thursday at 4:30 when I could finally head out to Louisville to celebrate Jason's birthday. The drive felt like it took forever but it was all worth it when I got to the apartment and gave Jason his birthday present. Unfortunately he had two exams on Friday so we waited to celebrate until after his exams were done on Friday afternoon. He came home and relaxed for a bit, we ran errands and I baked his birthday cake. I didn't set anything on fire and it turned out ok. Granted it was from a box but baby steps, right? Next year I'll get fancier with it and hopefully it will be homemade. Next year is number 30 for him so we'll be making it a much bigger deal anyway. Friday night he had friends over for nerdy board games and drinks. We determined that his tiny apartment can hold a maximum of 11 people after that we'd be elbowing each other in the faces trying to walk around. The games seemed to be a bit of a hit and Jason had a really good time so I'm going to call it a success. His friends are great and I'm glad they've welcomed me into their group. Saturday Jason and I had a 'date night' for his birthday and sort of in celebration of 9 months together, it's not really a milestone but it's excuse enough for me to order wine with dinner. Before dinner we went to see The Adventures of Tin Tin, which I had been avoiding because well, it's a cartoon. Surprisingly the movie was great and I'm glad J was finally able to see it. We went to Palermo Viejo which is an Argentinian restaurant in Louisville. Those Argentinians like their meats and even though I don't typically eat pork or beef I got a little 'crazy' and tried some of Jason's dinner. I still don't like beef. The food was excellent though and it was another successful evening. When we weren't out and about we were lazy at home trying to unwind from school. Laziness involved napping, eating leftover birthday cake and watching a lot of Netflix. Netflix is always the demise of any motivation I have so my laptop being broken is probably going to mean productivity and not staying up til 2 a.m. watching episode after episode of the United States of Tara. I may go through withdrawals and end up waking up in the middle of the night sweating and crying. Judge all you wish, it's deserved. 
Looking at my planner I counted about 6 weeks until Spring Break and 11 weeks left in the semester. I know its going to go very quickly because the first 5 weeks have already flown by without much resistance. Then we may see some big changes on the horizon. We shall see. 
Dropping my laptop off at the Best Buy in Louisville gives me a legitimate excuse to return soon as well as my friend visiting at the end of the month woohoo. 
Have a lovely week. I'm crossing my finger that nothing else of importance breaks. 

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Study break dance

Ok, I'm not really dancing. I am however listening to music and trying to ignore the fact that a 10 year old girl at Starbucks will not stop staring at me. I wish her parents would teach her it's impolite to state at strangers. She'll learn to people watch like a good little creep when she gets older, we've all been there. 
So, this week was pretty much a bust for me socially. I didn't see friends, do anything too exciting or do much of anything that wasn't absolutely necessary. I lead such an exciting little life, I know. 
I was, however, very productive with school, field placement and making some extra cash. I ended up babysitting twice this week. I also helped my supervisor develop a project for our internal program and she seemed really impressed with some of my ideas. Things are going well at my placement and they are (finally!) keeping me very busy. I spent nearly 20 hours there this week instead of the usual 16. It seems like any free time I had was spent studying, reading and working on a diagnostic presentation and a paper. The presentation is worth 40% of my grade so I'm in mild freak-out mode. Thankfully my partner on the project is intelligent and works hard as well. Group work is the pits sometimes, especially if you're grouped with people you want to punch.
After working out on Wednesday my ankle swelled up to the size of a grapefruit.  Apparently I need to take it a little easier. Unfortunately working out hasn't helped at all in the manner of sleep. Usually I sleep much better and have more energy but my brain was just not allowing it this week. There just are not enough hours in the day. 
After studying for several hours on Friday my brain leaked out of my ears so i decided it was time to do something that required very little though. I rented 50/50 because J.G-L. is freaking fantastic. I was under the impression it was a quite funny. There were funny parts and then there were parts that made me feel like I was watching one of those ASPCA commercials with the sad looking puppies and kittens. There were tears on more than one occasion while watching it. Woof. Saturday after group work and babysitting my sister and I went out for a late sushi dinner paired with fruity adult beverages. It was a much needed vacation from responsibility. 
So here I am, continuing to work on school stuff and taking a little break to update. I dyed my hair earlier today and am back to a red color of sorts. We'll see how long this one lasts. 
I got to talk to my buddy over the phone at some point this week. It was a much needed reality check. Neither of us know how to function as adults so we get to discuss normal people behaviors and how we are deviant. One of these days we'll feel ok about the normal functions in life like healthy relationships and being successful. It's a bit strange how we are so similar in our mental processes. I'm sure glad we're friends though. 
It is almost time to take that 2.5 hour drive up to see one of my very favorite people to celebrate his birthday, I just need to make it through Thursday and I'll be good to go. I can't wait.
Hope you have a non-crazy, less stressful week, which is what I need as well.