Sunday, July 19, 2009

"You're killing me, Smalls..."

Name that movie!
I'll give you a minute....

Okay, time's up: The Sandlot.
Too bad if you haven't seen it.
That's one of my all-time, favorite and most usable lines EVER.
Works well in any situation.

Well, I'm not quite up to posting my elaborate, spinach-artichoke dip Recipeshare at this time, but I will be soon, hopefully. Regarding detailed tasks, I seem to do better first thing Saturday mornings, but that time was used up this weekend for other "detailed tasks," like exercising, gardening and coupon clipping and organizing. Oh yes, I'm a HUGE coupon clipper. I take twice as long at the grocery store because I have to be sure the sale item I just purchased doesn't have a coupon to accompany its wonderful-dealness. If the item indeed DOES have an accompanying coupon, I will feel greatly empowered and be in a fantastic mood for the rest of the day, even more so if the store is double or triple-couponing. If I leave the store without using a single coupon, I feel lazy, guilty and/or like I missed an opportunity to put money back in my pocket. I will hereby cut short my dissertation on coupon clipping due to the fact that I am completely off-topic already.

Several, highly-bloggable events and conversations have transpired since my last post. You will not hear about all of them... *sigh*... That's the way it goes, I guess, but it pains me to deprive all of you eager readers of the intricate convolutions that take place on a daily basis in my fascinating, documentary-worthy life.

I will speak in generalizations, then, as the time and and energy do not exist for thorough expression. A Monday-night conversation with a friend I haven't seen in ages must have prompted yet another existential crisis because not even a week later I found myself in complete meltdown mode. I do mean complete as I have not experienced this degree of emotional breakdown in about 19 months. My dearest dear was unfortunately present for the Meltdown, and I do believe he was a little unnerved by it. Of course the man has seen me cry before and cry hard, but never have we spent time on the side of the road in 110+ degree weather, wasting gas on air-conditioning as the blubbering, incapacitated driver questions the past, present and future.

Seriously, people, I am 28 years old.
I have a BA.
I have travelled the world.
I moved myself across the country in a 1994 Pontiac Bonneville.
I have somehow, miraculously survived 2 major heartbreaks that that nearly caused the annhilation of my spirituality and ended my life (yes, medication deserves a little credit).
Above all, I have found the love of my life.

I should be flying high.

Considering my most recent crack-up, I am still, obviously, unquestionably NOT OKAY.

Why am I baring my soul?
1. It is therapeutic.
2. It's not like people don't know this.
3. Perhaps it will help someone (me, for example).

I have done some thinking about what led to this and have narrowed it down to a few factors. First of all, my job has been stressing me to-the-MAX. Forty hours a week spent in misery can start to wear at you after a while, yes? Secondly, I have been thinking about going back to school but am utterly torn as to what I should pursue. I don't exactly have all the time in the world to think this one over as marriage and kids are in the not-so-distant future. I don't want to cause any more burden than necessary on the guy who will be Mr. Mom/Mr. Pay-all-the-bills while I do whatever-the-heck it is I think will meet my career goals and fulfill my potential while simulateneously paying off my college debt. Geez.... I'm putting a lot of pressure on myself. I'm just trying to be realistic, here.
The combination of #1 and #2 are less than ideal due to the fact that the faster I decide on #2, the faster I'll be rid of #1.... even worse is the conversation I had about #2 on Monday night (see above reference) conjured up old dreams I thought were dead and gone due to their painful suffocation by 2 years of rejection from medical schools and current disillusionment with healthcare, in general.
Apparently, those old dreams are still gasping and wheezing a little... haven't quite kicked the can, at this point.

Oh, but there's more.
(Feel free to stop reading at any time. Remember, this is my therapy session, here.)

Number 3... nagging guilt over thoughts that I'm not doing a good job taking care of my guy. We commute together, leaving early and getting home late (due to public transportation schedules), and I somehow have the energy and presence of mind to check on my garden, feed the dog and monitor my Weight Watchers points for the day, but am just too exhausted to think of what to fix for dinner, much less pack him a lunch to take to work.
Yes, the guy can cook and take care of himself, but I can do it, too. And I like to. And I have been way more focused on me than him, lately. And it's bugging me... probably should be. How does this contribute to the Meltdown?
Well, I had perfectly calculated (or so I thought) the time it would take me to get a few things at the store and across town, so we could make the last bus of the day and not have to stop on the way home. I had planned the best supper ever, jotting notes to myself throughout the day, and I was simply elated that I was pulling it off. I even made it out of the grocery store on time, despite the chatty cashier who had lectured the, um, older woman ahead of me in line on why it was okay for him to answer his cell phone while he was at work. She proceeded to lecture him back on the fact that if people could fall ill without you before cell phones existed, then people could certainly do it now. He didn't understand how she could say such a thing when his father had recently been hospitalized, missing her point entirely. Like I said, I still made it out on schedule, even when the same cashier insisted on examining and commenting on each of my items... good thing I didn't buy anything too personal. Geez.

You can imagine my disappointment when I arrived across town, ready to grab my things and hop on the train that will take us to the last bus of the day, and Tom announced that we had missed it.
Missed it.
Are you telling me that I had survived she-who-shall-not-be named, a painfully slow afternoon, and the creepy, 40-something cashier who still lives with his parents, and we missed it, thereby necessitating our driving home, thereby ruining our perfect balance of car and public transportation and costing us extra gas money??!
Add that to #1, #2 and a very long week (this was Thursday, mind you), and you get instant tears, rapidly descending to self-loathing.
I'm not exaggerating (as if I ever do).
I don't know what came over me, but the next thing I knew, I was being told to pull over, park the car and handed Kleenex for the mess my nose had made on my face. I was literally melting, apparently. I was asking Tom why he was dating me, there are so many better, more beautiful, incredibly successful, way-more-with-it women out there he could have, why on earth was he with a schizophrenic gal like me, stuck in a dead-end job with mounds of debt and an old, dusty car with a cracked windshield.
He just pulled me over to his chest and kept handing me Kleenex.
Poor guy.
Poor, wonderful guy...
Yeah, he told me a bunch of nice stuff about how I was the one he wanted to spend his life with, etcetera, but the main thing that stuck with me was, "You are not your job" (not that I'm discounting AT ALL the loving, supportive, chick-flick-worthy things he said, as well).

That statement was the one that saved me the very next day (Friday) when I was ready to throw in the towel already at 9:30am when my fresh coffee got dumped down the sink by a picky coworker before I could even snatch one, measly cup. No need for me to describe my emotions at that time. Let it suffice to say I was ready to march into the office manager and demand a Mental Health Day. Instead, I retreated to the bathroom, took a few deep breaths and remembered what Tom had told me. Between that quiet moment alone and the lunch we had together later, I made it.

This Sunday evening finds me happy. However, a tinge of emotion lingers behind my eyes, somewhere in the top of my head, maybe in my nose, I don't know, as I regret another too-short weekend and try not to get heartburn over the thought of going back to work. At least I have a break from the Offender, as she is on vacation all week. But my Thursday Meltdown is still with me since I haven't fully resolved any of the contributing issues, #1-3. Yes, I made Tom a couple of meals this weekend, which always makes me feel good with a dutiful sort of satisfaction. But I won't feel great even about #3 until I've been more consistently selfless over the next few weeks.
God help me. I think I can summon a tiny bit of flickering faith from this neglected soul of mine. I know the Big Guy doesn't mind a call for help, especially from an admittedly "bruised reed."
And I'll take any assistance available.

Be well,


  1. Hans,
    We should really chat sometime. As you know, I've had some breakdowns of my own. Although, I've gone through them completely alone without any love-of-my-life to fight off my bouts of almost hysterical mental illness. (NOT that I'm suggesting that I'm not happy about your boy, or that I have it worse or anything.)
    But through every single one of my breakdowns, I sit there crying (silently screaming is more like it because I don't want to disturb my housemates)and sometimes I get so mad I break things--last time it was a pretty red headband. And as far away from a superior being, Jesus as I like to call him, as I feel, I always end up at the same place. That's me, saying "ok, who the hell are you, and would you please make this better?" and somehow, after that it always gets better.
    That's just from me to let you know that maybe med school would have actually make things worse... maybe you escaped professional school, whereas I, DID NOT, and I'm still in need of counseling.

  2. Oh dear. I AM sorry about your trials, Hannah, really and truly. But I have to say, that even when you are talking about troublesome things you make me want to laugh. You just have a great way with words. And a great sense of humor. And, to quote a movie myself, "I could listen to him for hours." There. You probably won't know that one unless you are now into the Beatles.
    Have I mentioned how glad I am that you're blogging? People like you really do need to get your words out on a medium like paper. Or cyberspace, I suppose.
    P.S. I have had similar conversations with Jason. I would like to suggest that stress perhaps has a bigger part to play than not having things together.
    P.P.S. Did I say I love you?!

  3. whew! that was intense... but i made it thru... as eleanor metnioned, you rock at writing. you should do it more. as well as sing well all those other performer-y things that i'm so impressed by :)

    i wish i could eat some of your meals.......k8