So bad at things….

I am the worst at things. 

Seriously. Everyone else I know can do everything and anything. They make money, they get boyfriends/girlfriends, they workout regularly, they don’t eat fast food every night, they’re not always telling themselves they have a crazy disease.

How did I end up with the short end of the stick? 

I think I think too much. Or I think about the wrong stuff. On top of that, I have this little problem. If it’s not perfect, I want to give up. No room for mistakes, missteps, or shortcomings. If it wasn’t perfect, it’s not worth even trying anymore. 

That’s dumb. I know. But it’s really hard to overcome. Accepting “good enough” or “okay” is SO hard. Especially in today’s culture. Everyone seems perfect in magazines, on social media, everywhere. Everyone is bragging about their lives, or the great things their kids are accomplishing, or the cool things they can afford to buy. 

I get it. It’s all a facade. Not everyone’s life is perfect all the time. Pretty much no one has a perfect life. I just feel like I shouldn’t get stuck the way I do. I am educated. I am fairly intelligent. I’m social and get along with people. I can flirt with the best of them. 

Yet, here I am. Failing at this blog. Eating too much fast food. Not losing any weight (probably gaining more). Not working out regularly. Basically, I’m not achieving any of my goals. And I feel like I have given up. I’ve let myself go. Because I failed this year, I’ll just have to wait for a new beginning. 

But that is BULL PUCKY! I can start now! I can workout. I can stop eating horrible food. I can continue this blog. I’m going to be that little engine that could. The only person getting in my way is myself. There is not another single person who is stopping me. In fact, I have more people wishing me well and willing to do things like workout with me. 

Guys, I’m so tired and lazy. After I get off work (YAY FOR EMPLOYMENT!!!!), I’m starving. Which makes it VERY hard to make it home without stopping at one of the hundreds of fast food joints along the way. So then I eat a huge pile of crap. So then I feel like crap and I’m full and working out will have to wait until some of this food leaves my stomach. Oh, but then I get too tired waiting for that time to come. So then I give up. 

Bad Alicia! Bad. 

My favorite class at the gym right now is called BodyAttack. It’s so fun! It’s full of movement, music, shortness of breath, running, jumping. I feel so great after each class. Unfortunately there is only one that I can attend during the whole week! So I need to find something equally as appealing the other days. And I still need to get into a weight lifting routine. Why is that so hard to do? I guess I just want someone to tell me what to do and how much weight to do it with. Oh, wait. There’s a class for that, too. They don’t quite tell you how much weight to use, they make suggestions, but they do tell you how to lift it. So, I guess I’m out of excuses….

Whodathunkit?

Oh, man. I apologize for disappearing. It was not intentional. Let the excuses begin!

1. Unemployment was getting to me. I was getting stir-crazy, regular crazy, bored, etc. It was hard to motivate myself to do ANYTHING because I felt like I was never going to find employment or be a contributing citizen to society. 

2. The opposite of that excuse is this one: I found employment!! I started my new job on last Monday. Today was my seventh day in a row working. (The schedule is being worked out so I didn’t know until this morning, after I was already at work, that today was the start of my weekend.)

I actually wanted to talk about something slightly deep. Life always surprises me. The most frequent lesson I have learned during the last decade is that you really can’t plan life. Well, that’s a lie. I know some people who can plan much of their life. I am not one of those. It feels like things are really out of my control ALL THE TIME. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Sometimes it feels like it, and it gets me really down, but then things turn out better than I could have made them myself.

Take my career path. I studied journalism and public relations (translation: a LOT of writing) with a side of marketing in college. My first job was with the marketing department of my college. It was great. It was so full of responsibility. It made me step up and show that I could be mature, trustworthy, intelligent, and get sh*t done. It mostly showed ME that I could do something. Before I graduated, I had really low self esteem when it came to future employment. My two best friends were the smartest kids ever and they were super successful in anything they did. They got the best grades, had lots of friends, were just awesome. And then there was me. I got A’s and B’s…some C’s (it was hard to really take things seriously when I didn’t care about them or have any interest in them [WORLD GEOGRAPHY – at the time]). 

There was this one time – maybe junior year? – in a class where we basically learned how to try to get a job (resumes, interviews, and all that jazz). Well, we had some fake interviews one night with real professionals who volunteered their time to interview us and give feedback. Well, my two best friends and I interviewed with one guy and mine was HORRIBLE. I felt like complete and utter sh*t afterward. I don’t remember if it was just that I didn’t know how to answer his questions or that he said something (I really think he said something) and I just realized: I have nothing to offer humanity. No one will hire me because I can do nothing for anyone. My bffs both left the interview feeling good. I wanted to jump off a building. I’m pretty sure I cried. I think I almost cried DURING the FAKE interview. It was that bad. 

Anyway, so you can see that I felt pretty bad about this whole “getting a job” thing. So my first job, that I got through the woman I had worked for IN college, was really good for me on so many levels. The most important positive, like I said, was that it showed ME that I am awesome and that I can pretty much do anything I want to. Literally ANYTHING. I managed a $200k budget – reconciling it down to the PENNY. I developed relationships with vendors, saved the university lots of moolah, had meetings with pretty much every bigwig on campus, convinced those bigwigs to let me control the social media for the school for six whole months (remember – temporary gig). Half of my job was actually supposed to be the job of the marketing director – of which there was none at the time. 

Ok, enough bragging. As a girl who has been unemployed five different times since she graduated college five years ago, I can’t really brag THAT much. 

Ok, so I was on the marketing track back then. After that temporary gig ended, I moved to St. Louis to live near my best friend from college and I took whatever job I could that paid rent. That job was as a bank teller. My intentions were to find a sweet marketing gig from there. Well, that didn’t happen. I moved jobs, the second one sucked, I found myself unemployed for the second time since graduation. 

Now, here’s where it gets crazy. I found an 8 week temporary gig that allowed me to stay in St. Louis until after the wedding of one of my best friends and then I moved back in with my mom. I NEVER thought I would move back to the city I went to high school in. I didn’t like this city. And I REALLY never ever ever thought I would ever ever EVER live with my mom again. Ever. 

See? Things I was never planning on happened anyway. 

But here comes the good part.

When I was in St. Louis I randomly started volunteering one day a week (I actually started before I found my temporary job, while I was sitting around unemployed) at a wildlife rescue center. And I LOVED it. That one day was the highlight of my week – and I was working for free! So I decided that I needed to make this my job – and actually get paid for it!

So when I moved in with my mom, she supported me for three months while I did an unpaid internship with the San Antonio Zoo bird department. At the end of my internship (which was for nothing – I didn’t need any college credit – I just wanted to get my foot in the door and gain some experience) I got hired! I NEVER imagined I would ever be a zoo keeper. Seriously. Even when I imagined working with animals as a kid/teen, I never thought about zoo keeping. Ever. But there I was. A zoo keeper. And I cared for BIRDS. I mean, who goes into animal care and works with birds? Well, I ended up LOVING working with birds. I got to the point where I never wanted to go to another department and get experience with anything else because I loved my birds too much. 

So, the point to this long story is that where I’m at, working these jobs that I LOVE, was never in my life plan. But things worked out better. 

My new job is as an animal caregiver at a sanctuary. We mostly have primates – but we also have some birds and cats. I’m a relief caregiver, so I’ll be working in 2 or 3 different sections throughout the week, when people go on their weekends. That means I get a great variety. So far I work with birds, a few monkeys, lemurs, tamarins, marmosets, African serval cats, and bobcats.

The basic purpose of this place is to give reprieve to former medical testing animals and animals who were once pets and were either abandoned, mistreated, or donated. And let me tell you – everyone loves these animals. We are trying to give them the best alternative life they can have. Though I can imagine that it wouldn’t be hard to surpass some of their past lives. Some of the medical testing stories I’ve heard about these guys sound AWFUL. Cringe-worthy. It’s crazy that these animals seem so balanced. I’m pretty sure I would have some irreparable neurological damage if I lived the lives some of these guys have had.  

So, crazy life, man. I’m doing something I never thought about, living somewhere I never wanted to return to (to live, anyway). The only thing I would really like to change now is my living situation. It is time to move away from home again. I used to live on my own. For a few years. Hopefully that will happen again. Maybe this year! That’s my big goal right now. Save up for an apartment. 

Ok, sorry for the boring post! But now you’re caught up and hopefully I can resume writing like normal! I’m a contributing citizen of humanity!!! 

C.A.T. L.A.D.Y.

I entered my first cat photo contest. Yup. This cat lady thing is getting real. I didn’t win. But I did get posted to the website. http://moderncat.com/articles/best-buds/68086

It’s the same photo I use on this blog – but it’s one of my favorites of me and Stuart. CAT LADY!!!!!!!! I’m a little scared for what this means for me in the future, but, since I’m not dating until at least 2014, I guess I shouldn’t worry for at least another ten months.

Being female is not often advantageous.

I’m going to be honest. I hate everything right now. EV. ‘RY. THING. 

Yup. PMS. It’s taking over my brain and turning me into an angry and sad and empathetic pile of mush. Everything makes me cry – whether I’m mad, sad, happy, or anxious. And tiny little comments make me seethe and steam. 

Don’t even get me started on pre-period reflections upon my own life. Oh, man. That’s a dangerous rabbit hole to fall down. 

I think it’s time to just turn off the brain, binge-watch Vampire Diaries on Netflix, and not talk to anyone for five more days.

Don’t wear sweat pants to the grocery store.

So…I usually don’t have to worry about running into people I know when I’m out shopping. Almost no one I know lives near me and I haven’t ever run into anyone that I really know. WELL, that changed today. So I went to the grocery store (not the closest one, but the better one) with my mom. I was so cold that I just didn’t want to change my clothes – so I went out in sweat pants, slippers, and a bulky windbreaker. My hair was kind of frizzy and I was wearing glasses.

I was almost done shopping, walking through the very last row, when I saw this cute guy who looked familiar. I immediately realized that I’d gone out with him a few times via Match.com. And it had ended weird and badly. And I looked, in the words of one of my best friends, GRUNGY!

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I was so flustered after I saw him, because it was such a bad ending (I’ll probably talk about it some day). He definitely looked right at me, too, but I just awkwardly looked away and walked faster, staring at the frozen foods in the cases, while my mom talked to me, oblivious to my trauma. I immediately had to text all my friends and share the horrible experience.