Feelings that aren’t feelings.

If I made a cloud diagram of my Google searches in the past couple of weeks, this would be the results (imagine a cloud):

Insomnia, palpitations, weight gain, weight loss, emotional eating, insomnia and itching, anxiety and itching, nervous ticks…etc.

WHAT the hell? I was fine, and all of a sudden I break down. One of my best friends from Louisiana came to visit me and as soon as he got here my nervous system wen to pieces. I am a master jigsaw-puzzler and I could not figure it out. I couldn’t put the pieces back together. 

Ever since his vista I’ve been slightly out of breath, not enough to worry me but enough to annoy me and worry me about a deeper cause. I’ve been scared of crowded places, which is a pretty big deal when you live in Manhattan, and I’ve been staying home more often than not. 

I even think my weird depression is affecting my dog. Stevie has been sleeping longer hours, and he has been eating less. 

The problem is that I’m not quite sure what feelings are causing this. Yes, I’m lonely. Yes, it’s the 3 year anniversary of my bachelorettehood. Yes, I’m unemployed and can’t figure out what the hell I want to do with my life. 

Well, maybe I have a reason to be sad. Several reasons. 

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Why I’m scared to exit social media.

 

I remember when Myspace was a thing, way before we started customizing our own pages so much that our viewer’s  internet connection slowed down. I was guilty for having the pointer that carried a star trail behind it. I was also guilty for the GIF that probably provided you with a virus. 

 

My Timeline on Facebook gets worse everyday. I have an average of 11 political posts, 8 Christian posts, 7 baby posts, and 3 hair salon posts. that’s just today, not including the beard posts, the anti-thigh gap posts, and the cute animal posts which amount to around 30. 

I’ve been a member of Facebook for quite a while. In fact, I remember having to provide a scholastic e-mail address in order to join the website. Now it’s a shit show. People are posting pictures of cats, status updates about their ever changing weight, and videos of people pouring cold water on their heads. 

 

Why am I so scared of getting rid of my Facebook profile? I’ll make a list. 

 

  • I’ve been with Facebook since the beginning of time:  I was with FB when they had to have had a .EDU e-mail. I was with FB when I was working my first job. I was with FB when I was an unexpected freshman in college. 
  • I’ve moved around so much that I consider FB my connection to my past: I contact old friends through the site. I contact international family members through the platform. FB acts as a digital photo album of which I lack the physical representation.

Anyway, the site is great, but not everyone needs a voice.

Best,

Me.

 

 

Waiting on the Call: Part Deux

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Just a quick update for anyone who read my last post. I got the job! The call came through and, even though I dropped my phone on the concrete upon answering and had to call them back, they offered me a position.

I’m on cloud 16.

And the picture of my dog is to celebrate the occasion with cuteness.

Waiting on the Call

The bar where I was working closed a little over a month ago. At first I thought it would be easy to find another job because of my experience, but after ten botched interviews I began to see things differently and lose hope. 

I started going to interviews with a negative mindset, thinking there was no way in hell I was going to get that job because if I hadn’t been offered a position already then why should they? And just a couple of weeks ago, I stopped going to interviews altogether. I would still send resumes out and set up interviews over the phone, but after setting the appointment I would yelp the location and imagine they wouldn’t hire me. The restaurant was too nice, the bar was too popular, the other bartenders were much taller, my mixology knowledge wasn’t perfect enough. I found every excuse to not go to an interview.

Yesterday I stepped out of my comfort zone and applied to a start-up company that had nothing to do with bar tending. Two hours after I submitted my application I got a phone call and a phone interview, which I nailed. The woman who interviewed me asked if, although it was very short notice, I would go to a group interview that was taking place in two hours because she really wanted to meet me.

The prospect of a group interview was harrowing to me, but I went anyway. I felt right about, like my chakras had aligned or my energy took a shift for the positive all of a sudden.

I nailed the group interview and now I’m experiencing the worst part of the job application process: waiting. They told me they would call by Thursday, and even though it’s only Wednesday I’m starting to lose hope. I really want this job and against my better judgement I got my hopes up. It feels very much like when you have a crush on someone and you keep checking your phone to see if they texted or called, or e-mailed, or face booked, or tweeted, or even sent you a smoke signal.

AHHH! I really want to hear from these people!

The Stigma of Being Single

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I can still remember my first heartbreak. I was living in Spain and attending kindergarten. I remember that first day when my parents dropped my off and the teachers closed the gate, separating me from the only people I’d ever know. I jumped onto the bars of the gate and started screaming and crying, like a very angry, blonde monkey. One of the teachers had to coax me down and almost drag me to the classroom.

It took a couple of weeks for me to go into the building willingly. The tantrum became routine: My parents would drop me off, I would latch onto the gate, and then a teacher would walk me inside after convincing me that they would be back in a few hours. Sometimes I wish I was still brave enough to throw a tantrum of that magnitude when facing something I don’t want to do.

Then I met Fernando. He was in my class and sat at my table. Sometimes I would borrow his colored pencils and he would always compliment me on my drawings. He must have had great taste because I was an awesome artist.

One day, during recess, one of the girls was explaining the concept of boyfriends and girlfriends to the group. She’s probably a huge slut now because we were only five or six. I don’t exactly remember how she described it, but I think it had something to do with kissing. Our group decided we were going to go out and get boyfriends, and I had my eye on Fernando. He was playing soccer with the boys. I found no reason to be nervous about propositioning someone at that age, so I went up to him right before the bell rang and asked him “Do you want to be my boyfriend?”

He said no. I was confused. That wasn’t how it was supposed to work. According to the girls, we were supposed to have boyfriends by the time we went back to class. There was another boy named Fernando in my grade and I figured as long as he had the same name it wouldn’t really matter. So I walked up to Fernando II, who was also playing soccer, and asked him. He told me no as well. The bell rang, and I was the only girl without a boyfriend.

Fast forward 21 years. I am still that girl who went back to class with no boyfriend. All of my friends are getting married, having children, and leading a pleasant, domestic life in suburbia. My cousins in Spain are all paired off, and even the younger ones are having children.

Every time I speak to a family member, they ask me if I have a boyfriend yet. One of my relatives even asked if maybe there was a girl in my life, but I told her that even though open to the idea I had no one. No boy, no girl, no one.

Dating is different in my world. I live on a island with millions of other people, a large portion of which are models and actors. Relatives in Spain are used to small town life where you usually end up with your high school sweetheart or end up married by the time you’re 21. Personally, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with waiting. I don’t want to settle for someone I’m not completely passionate about, and although my grandparents may never get to meet my children, they can still meet my puppy.

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How I Handle Anxiety

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Found this on Facebook earlier. I think it really hits the nail on the head as far as anxiety and anxiety attacks go. 

I can usually feel mine coming a mile away. I become very aware of my own heartbeat and blood pressure. They happen a lot during hangovers or when I haven’t had much to eat. They also occur if I’m dehydrated, over-caffeinated, over-stimulated, and in close quarters. I’ve had a couple on the 6 train. Those were not fun. 

The first thing that happens is I realize I’m on the verge of a panic attack. Having had more than I can count, I’m no stranger to the symptoms. My pulse changes. Either my heart rate increases or my heart beats so hard it feels like it’s in my throat. Then I begin sweating. The sweating makes me itchy and the itchiness makes me start tapping my foot or digging my nails into my stomach fat. Usually if my heart is in my throat I put my hand near my chest, like on a necklace or something, instead of my stomach. While all of this is happening, adrenaline starts pumping through me and I begin to feel like I need to get out of wherever I am. And, as many of you know, things just escalate from there.

I’ve gotten my panic attacks almost completely under control (with the hangover exception; I can’t control those very well) and I’d like to share some of my tips. They probably won’t work for everyone, but who knows?

One thing I do is reach for my phone. I have a slew of mind numbing games on it that require little to no thought but still keep me engaged. I don’t recommend high stress games, like Diner Dash or the traffic control games. But maybe Farmville or Candy Crush. I also downloaded a logic puzzle that seems to help. And word games are great too, especially the ones where you have to form words out of other words.

I’ve been told breathing exercises help, but they don’t help me. They only make me more aware of my heartbeat which makes things even worse. However, I mentally chant my little mantra I described in the post about Hypnosis which helps me regain some mental control over my own body and fight back instead of being a victim to my own adrenaline.

A not so healthy method of mine is eating. Usually something hot, like soup of  Chef Boyardee. He’s my favorite chef and reminds me of high school, a time when bills weren’t suffocating me.

If you have headphones handy, listening to some soothing music might help. Not necessarily soothing, but something that soothes you. I always put my Pandora on Janis Joplin radio, but if any Pink Floyd comes on I skip it because their music over-stimulates me. 

And if all else fails I call someone. It doesn’t matter who. Usually someone I trust, like a friend or my mother or sister. I never tell them that I’m having a panic attack because, as the image above shows, some advice just isn’t helpful. I just chat, rabidly asking about their day and their plans for the week. I soak up the information and it calms me down because they are calm as well.

Anyway, those are just some of the things I do to avoid or ease a panic attack. The best way for me to avoid them, however, is to stay away from behaviors that cause them like smoking, drinking, eating excessive sugar, or in my case watching anything remotely scary.

If anyone wants to add anything in the comments, feel free!!!

On Binge Watching TV

I can’t stand a quiet apartment. I would rather hear Lucille Bluth’s staccato laugh, Tyrion Lannister’s witty comebacks to his incestuous sister, or Frasier’s pretentious banter with Marty Crane. These characters keep me company. Unfortunately, these characters also keep me home.

On days like today, a day I like to call “a shit hangover day”, I tend to oversleep, order food from Seamless, cuddle with the dog, and watch shows that I’ve already watched. In fact, on hangover days I cannot tolerate watching something I haven’t seen before. I’ve tried, and it makes me nauseous. I would much rather spend time memorizing funny lines from Arrested Development or The Office.

As comfortable as I feel sitting on my couch and spacing out, I can never shake the feeling that it’s Saturday Night. The Last Staurday that I will ever be 25 years old. You see, next saturday is my birthday. I should be out with my friends enjoying life, enjoying the city, and enjoying my fleeting youth. But I choose to stay home instead, in the accepting company of Netflix. I don’t have to worry about putting on make-up or spending what limited funds I have. I also don’t have to worry about drinking too much and having another Shit Hangover Day tomorrow.

Therefore, tonight I will sit in a ratty old t-shirt, watch things I have already seen, and enjoy this solitude. I will also work on this new blog.

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