A Tropical Depression

Hello friends!

Man oh man it’s been a while! Things have definitely got away from me as I am now starting to enter the, “I have no life because grad school” mentality.

We’ve already struck our first show, we’re in tech for another, and we’re in the 3rd build week for my show. I am drafting better and better everyday, but I’m still no pro. Not even close.

We’ve passed midterms now, my welding project was a bit of a disappointment for me, but I certainly learned a lot, which is really the whole point. We had one week to make something and I decided I wanted to make a wind chime that looked like a jelly fish. When I started the project, my boss said that he didn’t think it would be able to happen how I wanted it to, and boy was he right.

Unfortunately I never listen, especially to nay sayers, and went along with it anyways. I wasn’t able to work on it as much as I had hoped since some things got in my way with the build of my upcoming show. So it ended up looking VERY organic, but it sounds great. I kept telling people to just close their eyes when they look at it, because the intonation of the copper tubes I used sounded really lovely.

Right now my life feels very messy. The stress from my show is really getting to me, and I’ve had 3 panic attacks in less than 12 hours. It’s enough that it makes me want to talk to a doctor about this again, but all of the anxiety medicine makes me feel like a zombie and I would hate that more I think.

Plus the last time I talked to a doctor about this, I didn’t get the greatest response. I actually completely forgot about this interaction until recently when I was looking through my medical history to send to UConn. I was looking through at the notes from the appointment I made about my overwhelming anxiety after my ex and I broke up after being together for almost 7 years. The diagnosis was, “Anxiety, extreme depression, obesity.”

COOL COOL COOL COOL COOL

Like, I know I’m no model of health, but let’s calm down. Also, I’m coming to you to talk about how I don’t want to be alive anymore, but yeah let’s dig a deeper hole about how overweight I am. That’ll totally help.

How do some people have medical degrees?

That being said, I am currently laying in my bed eating cheese. But also, self care. After all of my anxiety today, I got home, took a bath, poured myself a glass of wine, and now I’m here to talk it out. Of course living a healthy life style can certainly improve mental health, but right now I just don’t think some carrots and yoga is going to do the trick.

I do feel lucky that I can identify when I am having a panic attack atleast. Kimberly was saying that one of her friends is starting to have some but doesn’t know how to handle herself, which is super understandable. When I first started having attacks, I had no clue what was going on, and so I would try to act as normal as possible, which would really just make it worse.

Now I can feel my heart rate elevate, I start to sweat, I get this knot in my chest and that’s when I know I need to excuse myself. I like to go to the bathroom, bend down holding onto the sink so my arms are above my head, and then I cry if I need to and get back to breathing regular again. Then I splash cold water on my face, chest and neck. It usually takes about 5-10 minutes for me to return to normal, but I’ve found it the best way to calm myself down.

I also feel lucky to have surrounded myself with new friends at school who understand that this is a problem I face, and who give me the space and love to overcome it. They all know that I hate hugs, so they do this thing where they reach out their hand and put it on my forehead, and that is weirdly comforting.

Alas, I have faith that tomorrow will be a brighter and better day.

Today I leave you with the words from not a song, but my favorite podcast, “Jordan Jesse Go!” This was their catch phrase from last year. “Go punch a blimp!”

Love,

Aubrey

I have confidence in sunshine

Hello Friends!

Today I just want to talk about my life as of right now.

So I still have stitches in my knee, I will hopefully be getting those out on Tuesday, and then can resume all normal human activity. I’m feeling alright, a bit sore and still bruised but at least my dignity is recovering slightly. I’m getting very antsy about getting the stitches out though, as they are very itchy and all I want to do is bend my knee.

Two posts ago I talked about this guy, T, that I had been seeing. After I posted that, he completely ignored me for a couple of days. So I texted him and asked if he wasn’t speaking to me because I had gotten him sick or because he read my post and didn’t like it? He responded a day later saying it made him feel weird. I responded saying, well then let’s talk about why it made you feel weird. And I haven’t heard from him since. Womp womp.

It’s interesting dating as a 28-year-old; if this situation were happening when I was 20, I think I would be way more bothered and probably almost begging him for attention. But now it’s more of a relief. Like weeding out the negative people in your life, why would you want to have that person be apart of your world?

After this last Tindr experience, I’ve decided that I am done with the dating apps. I know that they have actually worked for a lot of people, including many of my close friends, but for now, I’m finally getting comfortable with who I am, and for now that needs to be enough. If I meet someone organically, then fantastic, but I’m done trying to force things.

It goes back to having my unrealistic expectations of people; I try to idealize how situations and dates will play out and they will never happen how I envision them. So in the meantime, I will just be the overly loud, dramatic, crazy person who I love to be.

Not only am I feeling more confident in my self, but also in my abilities. I’ve been learning Autocad more and more, and I have drafted almost all of my set now! At least in groundplan form… I still need to break out the pieces separately to build, but I’ll start that tomorrow.

On Friday I did more budget type things with my boss, as we have ordered all of the lumber, fabric, and various other details for the set. When we were going through my paperwork and my process, my boss seemed quite happy with what I had done so far. At one point he said, “You are better at this then you think you are.”

That means a lot. And it tells a lot about my self-esteem as of late. I need to keep remembering that while yes, I am here to learn, I also got into this program for a reason, because I have skills in this field, and I am good at things. So often it can feel like you’re overwhelmed in learning so many new things at once that it feels like you are such an idiot. Deep breathes and rearing all of the confidence you have left gets projects done though. And here we are! We start the build for my show tomorrow! (Although that can’t happen since we don’t have lumber or my build drawings yet, but it’s fiiiiiiine.)

Saturday afternoon I decided that I would attempt to make pierogi for the first time in four years, which felt daunting but fantastic. Since I’ve been gluten-free, I’ve really only missed beer and pierogi, so it felt good to take a crack at making it gluten free, and I think it came out better than I expected it to! It is a bit bland though, so I will have to ramp up my flavor game the next time around, but they sealed really well in the boil, and sautéed beautifully!

Saturday night I went to my second college party as an adult, which was good for me, at least in respect to going all in and taking chances. Kimberly decided that she wasn’t in the party mood, so I was going alone which just ramped up my anxiety ten fold. I was pretty on the fence about going the later it got, but I just told myself to knock it off, you’ll be fine, put on a sexy dress and fake it til you make it.

I took an uber there, and I walk in and I immediately felt old. But I just shut my brain hole up, opened my bottle of wine, and stood there awkwardly while undergrads  scream sang ABBA. One of the guys from the program asked if I wanted to play beer pong which I was so thankful for, and then I found my groove. Man, beer pong is so much fun. I don’t know if I will ever feel too old for it. My complete memory of the night ends there though, I know I called an Uber to leave eventually and it was the same guy who drove me there in the beginning, so that was very fun. And I know I woke up to a snapchat of Carleigh saying, “I thought you left your bottle of wine at the house, but then I picked it up and it was empty.” And that is the exact reason why I have an awesome hangover today. I wanted to start writing this earlier but I was just too off still.

When I was in undergrad, I don’t remember having hangovers. I remember waking up still drunk, which in the grand scheme of drinking, is the way to go. Now, my hangovers last ALL DAY. I haven’t been able to put pants on, I scooped pasta into a bowl with my hands, and my butt has made a permanent dent in my love seat. I even googled “delivery service for Gatorade”. I’m clearly thriving. I certainly need a couple of weeks to recuperate before I do anything like this again, but alas, being old is hard; and life is hard when it happens to you.

In the beautiful song from the beatiful Julie Andrews, from her beautiful mouth, ” And mind me with eash step I am more certain, Everything will turn out fine. I have confidence the world can all be mine, They’ll have to agree I have confidence in me. ”

 

Love,

Aubrey

Come on get down with the sickness

Hello friends!

Wowee it’s been a bit since I’ve posted anything! This week has been a bit nuts as we are in Tech for Grapes of Wrath, and so in true Theatrical fashion, I have come down with the plague.

I was feeling fine until I woke up Tuesday morning. My head was pounding, and I was sitting in class, sniffling, my head hurting so much that I couldn’t think straight. Then my boss asked me a question that I didn’t know the answer to, and I just started sobbing. And so I sat there and cried for 15 minutes, in class, waiting for it to be over. I had a straight up panic attack induced by sickness. It was so embarrassing.

I kept trying to get myself over it, but I’m one of those people who when others try to comfort them, I start weeping more, so nothing helped. I was supposed to work the rest of the day on the show, but the TD for it, I think being nervous I would start crying at him more, Facebook messaged me saying, “psssst… you can go home. I think you need to be on your couch in a blanket while watching kittens pretend to be dogs.” Man, these people get me already, I’m so lucky. So I went home and slept the rest of the day.

When I got up the next morning I still felt sick but had to keep going, so Dayquil and coffee helped me survive long tech days Wednesday and Thursday.

By Thursday night I was actually feeling a lot better. I thought, huzzah! I’m not really sick! And so here’s where I talk about dating again. Because I’m just so confused. And the guy that I’m seeing reads my blog so, hiiii! I’m going to talk about you and ask this blog all of the questions I have that I can’t eloquently ask you in person because words are hard and I talk in circles and when I write words down it makes more sense, I think.

Also here’s where maybe any parent figures of mine stop reading because I’m going to talk about sex. Okay great!

So the guy that I’m seeing texts me when I get out of work on Thursday and says, “Come cuddle”. And while I’m like yes I haven’t seen him in two weeks I want to do that, I’m also just leaving from work, I haven’t eaten, I’m covered in grease and sawdust, and I’m real tired. So I tell him I’m not going to his place, but he can come to mine, or I’m free all weekend. He says he’s busy this weekend but can come over tonight. So great, he’s coming over, I shower, eat, pickup, he comes over and within 10 minutes of him being here we have sex. Awesome.

So after we’re just chatting, drinking a little, I put on drunk history and we start to talk about my amazing, life-changing trip to the two-story Wegmans. I ask him if he loves Wegmans, and he says, “I mean it’s fine, I don’t really like shopping.”

….

I’m sorry. What? My brain does not even comprehend what he just says. So I’m like no, this isn’t shopping, it’s an experience. It’s TWO FLOORS. With a tequila bar inside. And a full liquor store downstairs. And it’s beautiful. Because it’s Wegmans.

He’s like, I mean, Aldi’s is great because it’s cheap. Which is like, valid. But not the same. Wegmans is a sanctuary. By now I can’t tell if he actually doesn’t like Wegmans or is just teasing me, but I’m literally upset. I have never met a human who feels this way. So I text my Office Estrogen girls and I’m like, “WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK. Let’s murder him, we need to rid humanity of this disease.” And these girls are my ride or die bitches and I love it. Kimberly says, “I mean there are a lot of other chips in the bag.” Carleigh makes an excellent point in saying, ” If he read your blog the FIRST thing he should do is be like, “heyo bitch wanna go on a Wegmans dinner and food shopping date?” IDIOTS THEY’RE ALL IDIOTS”.

Fucking truth bomb.

I eventually make myself forget all of the hurtful things he said to me, we go to bed, and then I start dying. Like literally it’s as if while I was laying in bed, the grim reaper came and sprinkled bits of the bubonic plague on me and laughed. All of a sudden I was SO sick. I think he… is this confusing? Referring to him as he? Okay I’m just going to call him T. Maybe that will be easier to follow? Let me know.

Anyways, I think T also thinks I’m dying and is a little worried, but we kind of sleep, he leaves in the morning but barely wants to interact with me, I’m not reading into this too much, it’s early and I have the plague.

So I go to work, I take medicine and I text him.

Aubrey: “Death has swooped over me. I’m sorry if you develop the plague now.”

T: “I’m feeling ok for now. Hopefully I survive.”

Aubrey: “May the odds be ever in your favor.”

T: “Graci. If I get sick tho, this relationship is over. Lol (emoji face).”

….

I’m sorry, what did you just say? Was I having a stroke? Did you just write, “relationship”? I’m just… so confused.

I haven’t seen you in two weeks, in that time, we maybe texted each other a couple times, and snapchatted about the same. Nothing big, really only to see how each of us were doing/feeling. Now you come over, for essentially a booty call and you’re going to call this a relationship?

Now I’m not angry about this, although I don’t know how my tone is reading, I’m just really confused. Because if I’m in a relationship, I think I would know it. I would call you my boyfriend, and instead I literally called him my dick appointment. To which, he didn’t like but also didn’t try to correct me.

To me, being in a relationship carries more co-dependency; literally talking, even if it’s on the phone, not just texting. And it’s definitely seeing each other more than every two weeks, unless you’re long distance, but in this case we are not. It’s little things, like now as I’m dying of the plague, checking in to see if I’m okay, seeing if I need anything. It’s knowing what you’re doing this weekend, I don’t need all of the nitty-gritty details, just the outline. It’s hanging out with each others friends and doing things together, even if it’s just sitting on the couch watching a movie. And I’m not saying these things because I don’t want to be in a relationship with T, I’d love to, these are just the things I want if I am in a relationship.

I think for me the hardest part about dating is getting rid of unrealistic expectations, and it is my biggest downfall. I blame movies and tv shows for making us watch these beautiful ideals that will rarely ever be a reality. I am always expecting the person that I’m seeing to make huge romantic gestures; showing up at my door randomly with flowers; Surprising me with a trip to the two-story Wegmans with a reservation for dinner at the tequila bar, you know the usual. But then sometimes I watch things and I just feel like this is how life should work, and it really doesn’t. Like literally last night I was watching Trainwreck and Bill Haders character looks at Amy Shumer and says, “I like you, I think you like me. We should be a couple.” AGREED THAT IS HOW DATING SHOULD WORK. But it never is, it’s always like what are we? Are we exclusive? Do we need any rules? NO, JUST BE MY BOYFRIEND AND LETS DO ALL OF THE THINGS TOGETHER.

But we don’t say any of those things because we are afraid that if we show too much interest too fast, they’ll get scared and run away. But like, I am so all or nothing. I will always tell you how I feel and if that’s too much for you, then I’m too much for you and it’s not going to work. While expressing some of these fears to Kimberly, she said something very similar, “I go all in, I’m from Vegas. High risk, high reward. On my fourth date with Trevor, I told him I loved him, and he said it back. So it’s worth it.” I’ve never done anything slow or super thought-out, so why start now?

So then I’m thinking about these unrealistic expectations that I have created for myself, and I think of other things that I see the couples in my life doing for each other, and maybe it’s not all that unrealistic. Like, two of my professors from undergrad are married to each other, and John gives Marjean a tiny pumpkin every fall, and he’s done this every year since they’ve met. LIKE STOP IM SOBBING. It’s things like my dad calling my mom, “My queen.” It just makes my heart melt. And while I know those things develop over years of marriage, is it too much to ask to want some of those things now?

There is this stigma that woman are complicated, that we can’t just say what we want or feel. But I don’t think that’s true. I don’t want to play games, and so I don’t. I want to be in relationship, I want to go apple picking and make dinner together, I like being somewhat co-dependent. I want to talk to you before I go to bed, and hear about your day. It’s just who I am. While I am all about being a strong independent woman who doesn’t need a man, I want one. I like having that other person to bounce ideas off of and to mutually support each other. I like being apart of a team. Sex is great and all, but when all is said and done, I want more than that.

Anyways, I also like being an asshole, and so in response to T’s relationship text, I said, ” Oh I thought it was already over. Since you don’t like Wegmans. Obviously.”

Then I went on about my day as per usual, did a lot of carpentry and rigging things for the show, but by like 3:30 I was fading fast. My medicine wasn’t doing it anymore, I was sneezing and coughing so much and my nose was like a faucet. I started to sound like I had been smoking a pack a day since I was 16. So when I left work, I called my mom to ask what I should take to make this go away. Yes, I call my mom about everything because as I said, I’m very co-dependent and also when I’m sick, I’m even worse and am a little whiney baby who wants everyone to help her.

So I go to CVS, talk to the pharmacist, I buy everything that they said I could take together, go home, take it all and make soup. I’m in bed by 10, sleeping like a baby, enjoying my fever dreams.

I still don’t feel awesome today, so I am quarantined to my couch and bed, which is such a fucking shame since I have the weekend off and it is a beautiful fall day outside… oh well. Atleast inside, no one will hear my whining.

And so for today, I will leave you with words from Hozier, also living that unrealistic expectation life. ” She’s gonna save me call me baby run her hands through my hair. She’ll know me crazy, soothe me daily, but yet she wouldn’t care. We’ll steal her Lexus, be detectives, ride round pickin up clues. We’ll name our children Jackie and Wilson, raise em on rhythm and blues.”

 

Love,

Aubrey

 

Emotions… am I right?

Hello friends!

Before I start this post, I just wanted to firstly thank everyone who has reached out with their love and support for me and this blog. It was amazingly overwhelming the amount of personal messages that I’ve been receiving about how my first post related to so many of you. If my experiences and words can help anyone, even just for a second, then that is truly amazing and I am so honored.

So today I thought we could continue chronologically into this new journey for me. I sort of ended my story yesterday with moving back to my parents house back around Thanksgiving. I just want to give a warning here that this is going to become very personal, candid, and upsetting. At least for this part, on a different day I will tell you all about how I screach-cried from joy from seeing a picture of a mini horse.

While I am so blessed to have parents who were willing and able to let me move back in with them, it certainly faced its challenges. I hadn’t lived with them full-time in almost 10 years, and it definitely felt like I had failed. I knew no one in Syracuse anymore, so now I was 27, getting a divorce, living with my parents, unemployed, with no friends around me, and very, very sad. I made a playlist called “sad piano” and would just listen to it on repeat. People told me not to do that, that it would make things worse, but man, no one wants to listen to Ke$ha when their upset; You need Adele, 4 blankets covering you, a bottle of wine, an oversized t-shirt that says, “Kiss me, I’m polish” that you’ve now spilled wine all over, a block of cheese, and another blanket for good measure.

My sister said that I cried myself to sleep most nights. I don’t really remember the specifics of that time, I just remember this overwhelming sadness that I never thought I would get over. I had this pit in my stomach that burned into my throat, and it just sat there, day and night. I have experienced a lot of traumatic, heart-wrenching times in my life before this, but this was uncharted territory; sad doesn’t accurately describe how horrible I was feeling, and I just didn’t want to be alive anymore. Truly, not to gloss over this, but depression and feeling hopeless is such a heavy burden that no matter how much love or compassion people show you, it just doesn’t help.

I am so grateful to all of my friends, but I know that I wouldn’t have gotten through this period of my life without my parents. They were so selfless and loving and supported me in ways I never knew I would need. I feel like I need to spend the rest of my life thanking them and finding ways to show them how much they mean to me because I truly don’t know what I would’ve done if they hadn’t done everything that they did for me. I’m sitting on my couch sobbing as I write this because I just… I just love Lori and Dave Ellis so god damn much. Thank you for shaping me into the woman I am today.

 

——————————15 minute intermission to find more tissues————————-

 

Okay, I’m back. I want to use this platform to say all of the things that I need to say, and so admitting that I was afflicted with that much pain is very difficult. If you’re still with me here, then I want to thank you. Thank you now, and thank you for reaching out back then when I so desperately needed it. If I didn’t respond to you, please know that I just couldn’t find the words then. If I did reach out to you, thank you for being there for me in my time of crisis. Your love saved me. Truly.

Thankfully, I was able to find my footing. But now I am experiencing anxiety for the first time… Yes I know, I feel very lucky to have just started this fun adventure of having a knot in my stomach, cold-sweats, nausea, palpitations, and an impending feeling of doom.

Apparently, for 27 years, I just did and said whatever I wanted, felt no consequence, and didn’t give any fucks about what anyone thought about me ever. Ahhh… what a simpler time.

Now, when I go out with a guy, I end up having to suddenly leave because I think I may start throwing up, and then all of my built up stress causes kidney stones! Huzzah! Great evolutionary trait, Aubrey!

Eventually though, I did get a job, and I was going to graduate school interviews, and feeling more and more like my old self. I have no tried and true method to how this happened; I can certainly tell you that it didn’t happen over night. It took months for me to feel comfortable in my own skin again. But one day, someone in my family looked at me and said, “Hey, the old Aubrey is back!” Thank god. From what I experienced, there is no wrong way to grieve. Your feelings and emotions are truly unique to you, and whatever you need to do to make yourself feel whole, then you should do that. I cried alot, drank more, reached out to friends, and leaned on my family 110%.

Occasionally I would have small realizations about my previous life and whenever that happened, I would write them down in a notebook. Often, they were things about my ex, but more often then not, they were reasons why I was better off. Soon they turned into qualities I wanted in my next partner. I had compromised so much in my previous relationship, that I now had a list of non-negotiables. I’ll share some with you; I can’t remember everything right off of the top of my head, of course I only remember the very silly ones, but to me, they are very important.

  1. They have to want to dance with me.
  2. They have to want to wear hilarious halloween costumes.
  3. They will never tell me that I’m too loud.

 

In January I had finally built up the courage to take on the adventure that is dating apps! What a weird thing guys! They didn’t have these things back in 2010, and man oh man, do I dislike them. Alas, at the end of January, I went on my first date in almost 7 years.

How do you even know when you’re ready to date again!? Was I ready? Did I even want to go? What do you talk about? Will it be weird if I meow at him? What if I get too drunk because I have no tolerance anymore and I laugh and whiskey comes out of my nose?

In my next post, I’m going to divulge what it’s like to date again, talk about the absurdities of tindr, tell you about the four guys that I’ve gone out with, and I don’t know, probably go on about how Jameson is the best whiskey? Yeah, that sounds right.

Thank you for going on today’s emotional roller coaster with me. We got through the tough part, now onto my hilarities and hi-jinks.

But for tonight, I will leave you with the words from Adele. Even though her songs have a a sad piano vibe to them, she still helped me in my time of need. “I can’t keep up with your turning tables. Under your thumb, I can’t breathe. So I won’t let you close enough to hurt me.”

 

Love,

Aubrey