Hope means holding onto you; Grace means you’re holding me too

(Painted Red- JJ Heller)

 

I’m not sure what the lyrics are going to have to do with this post…but they ar ein my head….so yeah…

 

Sometimes my head is spinning. So many things I’m trying to balance. Wanting a new job and trying to figure out how to get one while still working the job I currently have. Creating community where I am currently living while desiring to be moving somewhere else and also wanting to stay connected to other people…people who I already feel like I’ve been away from for too long. Pushing myself while still taking care of myself…that nasty word balance really means tension. I guess that is why I have never really liked the idea of work life balance. When I worked at my previous job, it was more like a work life blend. The people there were like my family. There was little separating work life from home life. That is how I am comfortable.

 

So yeah, I just need space to leave that tension today.

 

In one of my pharmacy magazines a couple weeks ago there was a study on the cost of residency. Oh how I know those costs. It gave the approximate cost of getting a residency in phase 1, not getting a residency in phase 1, getting a residency in phase 2, and not getting a residency in phase 2. I compared to how much I spent, and found that I spent more than even the high end of the range of the highest spending group in the study. In the study, students who got a residency tended to spend more than those who didn’t. Those things seem to indicate that I am not the typical student. While the application fees can be expensive, they are not the most expensive part of the interview process in my experience. To me, these facts seem to indicate that students who do not get a residency are, in general, students who are less strong students who also do not get many interviews. Not me. I got an interview nearly everywhere I applied. The problem is, the interview is only the first step, and you don’t get a residency by getting to the first step. You have to get all the way to the end of the path to get a residency and I can’t figure out those other steps. I try and try and try and I fail and fail and fail. I probably spend less per place I travel than other people – if I could avoid staying overnight I did, and if not I never paid more than $40 for my overnight accommodations. If I didn’t have to fly I didn’t, and I walked instead of paying for public transportation when I could. I spent no money on food while traveling. So yeah, I traveled as cheap as possible and still spent way more than even the highest spending students in the group and I still had nothing to show for it. It is frustrating. Everyone says I am great until it is time to decide who to hire and no one wants me. I feel like I keep trying and no one wants me and maybe it really is true that no one ever will. Maybe I should give up and realize all I’m doing is wasting everyone’s effort and frustrating myself all the time.

 

I wish *someone* would be willing to give me a chance. It feels like everyone meets me in the interview and gives up on me before they even really know me. Just because I refuse to lie about myself like other people do.

 

I read this post recently and really liked it. https://momastery.com/blog/2014/03/18/child-gifted-talented-single-one/ I really agree that every single child is gifted. And everyone develops differently…sometimes we call that asynchronous development when a kid is really good in one area while struggling in another. But the problem is, when that lower level area is reading/math skills we tend to think the kids aren’t that gifted when in reality they might be way better than anyone else their age at something else…and vice versa. I did okay with most classes in school, so I got the dreaded label “high-achiever” that meant that I had to miss out on classroom time – the exact opposite of what I really needed. Social skills is one area in which I really struggled, and the classroom was one of the few areas I did okay. They took me out of the part of school life where I felt comfortable so they could talk to me about choosing a career (umm, done, years ago). Taking me out of lunch to help me learn how to communicate better would have been a lot better use of time. Lunch was a stressful part of the day because you are required to go to the cafeteria where there are a limited number of tables and if you aren’t one of the first people in the cafeteria you’ll have to ask to sit with someone. If you’re lucky, there’ll be a table of special ed kids and their teachers that isn’t quite full yet, because they are almost always okay with someone sitting with them. If you’re not lucky, you’ll wander the cafeteria a few times and people will say no and you’ll get stared at because you’re standing when you are supposed to be sitting and just really hope somehow you’ll find somewhere to sit so you can just eat and maybe do some homework if you actually have table space and not just a chair. The lunchroom wasn’t helping me learn communication skills; it was just a big struggle in my day. It was one of those things where if I had a buddy to help me out I could have grown, but instead it was like to teach me to swim they decided throwing me in the deep end then grabbing me back out when it was way over my head and expecting that to somehow teach me to swim. Instead, by the end of my time in school I still was running to the cafeteria in hopes of being able to abbreviate the process and get out before I was pushed into the deep water again. Some days, by lunch there wasn’t even anything in my lunchbox ’cause I’d eaten it already, but it was still important to get to that cafeteria ASAP. A couple days during finals one of my teachers let me stay and keep working on my test instead of going to lunch. It was one of the best days ever. I wish people recognized that everyone is gifted, but just because a kid is gifted in one area doesn’t mean they’ll be gifted in every area. I wish they recognized that just because one kid wants to get out of the classroom that it doesn’t mean there are other kids for whom the classroom is the safe haven of the school. Some people need extra help in math. Other people need extra help with communication. I feel frustrated because the kids who need help with math get help in school, but the kids who need help with communication get left behind. No one cares if it isn’t a skill associated with a grade.

 

Then I got to college and they made me almost exclusively re-take classes for the first two years when my time would have been much better spent in intensive communication skills training. I worked hard and had some friends who really pushed me to grow my skills, but just think where I’d be now if I’d had the opportunity to substitute social communication skills for general chemistry and professional communication skills for biology. I work really hard and can pass as basically normal now, but I wish it wasn’t so incredibly challenging for me. I know that what for me is a very thoughtful interaction is essentially reflexive for other people. It is frustrating seeing other people fly through things with ease where I am working my butt off. Practice makes perfect, but practice takes time.

 

Also, I read another article recently that talked about a lot of things, but one of the things was about mixed-ability grouping. The article was of the opinion that despite studies showing mixed ability grouping in school is best that ability based grouping is better. I disagree. I think that grouping in general is less than ideal. Studies show that mixed ability grouping takes pressure off of high achievers – I disagree; it is a higher pressure environment, because now I have to not only be responsible for myself, but also for making sure to fix all the problems someone else might introduce to the group work. Studies show it is better for low-achievers because they can get help – I disagree; it is discouraging because I know I can’t adequately contribute like everyone else can. The article, however, disagreed because they feel like high achievers shouldn’t have to be bothered by people who aren’t as talented. I disagree. If I am going to be in a group, I’d rather it be with people who know they are low achievers, because they will often just let me do it so it really isn’t much worse than doing it myself…so yeah…I guess between mixed ability and ability based groups I for sure pick mixed ability, but if it is an option I for sure pick no groups at all.

 

Don’t read this last paragraph if you feel like medical-ish talk is TMI…

The internet lied to me. I know, right? The internet never lies…lol…The internet told me that once you start using a menstrual cup you don’t get bad cramps anymore. It sounded kid of far-fetched, because as long as you aren’t giving yourself TSS, how does the manner in which you collect your secretions affect anything? But I guess I still held out some hope because I mean, how wonderful would that be?! But it’s not true. The truth is that they will come if they feel like coming and for me that can be almost devastating. It really sucks to go to the bathroom at work with a hand clamped over your mouth praying you’ll make it to an appropriate and private receptacle before losing the contents of your stomach from the pain. Luckily, fear of vomiting has made my stomach practically steel and while my throat will be sore the next day from stomach acid, I’m a lot more likely to purge the contents of my stomach the other direction if I am that unlucky while painfully holding back vomit and mostly just spitting out acid brash. Add that to fighting to get enough air while all your oxygen is being used up by muscles you wish weren’t so active and it is an exhausting and very un-fun day that makes it hard to effectively do your job. I’ve been offered an inhaler and an emergency call in the past and while I guess I appreciate that people care, it is frustrating, because I am not someone who wants the spotlight on me, and also I know legally you can’t give me a new inhaler or neb and I am definitely not interested in sharing germs with you if you do have an OTC inhaler or neb in your bag. And I definitely don’t have the energy to sanitize your inhaler, nor do I really trust you to sanitize it. I have to stretch my trust and germ issues as far as they will go to borrow Tylenol and ibuprofen from a community supply or from someone’s personal supply if I somehow am out but able to take something, so obvi an inhaler is out…And I mean, I’m going to start with my own supply either way, because until I have at least a marginal amount of control there ain’t no way even an ibuprofen swallow tab is going to work for me. That’s why I have chewables in my bag and some itty bitty 81mg aspirin, because I can swallow a pile of those long before I’ll be able to do an ibuprofen. So yeah, I’ve accepted going home early before, because my ability to do anything that requires remembering something for more than a couple seconds is greatly decreased so I am not an ideal employee…when people find labels after you go home and have to call to ask you what needs to be done with them because your do in 5 minutes pile got lost it is kind of less than ideal. I’m kind of on the fence about heat packs. I feel like it mostly is just a distraction and a way to show I am not totally okay rather than an effective solution…and it is kind of a dangerous distraction, because it is super easy to accidentally burn yourself and not even notice until later when the other pain wears off…I wish there were a socially appropriate way to be able to just take off a few hours during the day and come back later when you’re ready to actually work…but of course when the work is piling up that would be a lot easier said than done even if equality advocates would have a heyday with women having options like that when men are expected to be able to work through a day sequentially.

Advertisements

Take some time to kick back, I want you to relax…no more questions to answer

(Holiday – Britt Nicole)

This is such a good song…

“Lack of sleep is what I do.”

“Work more work and somewhere to be. Skip the talk can’t you just text me?”

“When it’s work all day I just can’t escape. I just stop to think and I’m going crazy.”

Y’know, not every post has to be deep thoughts or anything…lol…’cause here’s a copy of one of my facebook memories from May. I mean, who doesn’t want to be super? How true it is that when emotions are deep for a long time that you feel like you are drowning, like no matter what you do you can’t seem to get enough air. Sometimes you just need a break to stop and give your mind a rest. Like during spring 2017 when I was finally available and not too scared to go to workday and got to spend some time painting with friends and actually felt a lot closer to okay than I had in a long time…

Untitled

One of my cousins posted this list of 32 questions for adults…not sure if she made up the list herself or found it somewhere, but it seemed like a good brain break.

 

  1. What bill do you hate paying the most? I want to say rent because when I was younger I said I didn’t want to deal with home ownership in college but after that never wanted to rent again because it feels like throwing money away to buy a place to live that will never be yours. Eventually you’ll have paid way more than it would cost for a nice home that would actually have some re-sale value AND you wouldn’t have to worry about living under anyone else’s rules…but now I am living in an apartment because I was certainly not in a frame of mind where I could have handled buying a house at the point I needed a home here, and I really thought I’d be in and out in less than a year anyway…but we know how that went…and so here I am…but in reality, when I pay that bill I really just write the check and forget about it. I don’t really put any thought into it. The one that really annoys me each time is the electricity bill…I wish it were just a flat fee, because it seems like it gets higher every month and since it is directly linked to my behavior it makes me wonder if I am doing something wrong and I can’t figure out what I am doing that makes it keep going up. It isn’t like it is insane and I can’t pay it…I mean, it probably goes up less than a dollar each time…it just bugs the h**k out of me each time I think about it!
  2. When was the last time you had a romantic dinner? Hmmm, how do you define romantic dinner? If you mean like went on a date, never. If you mean the last time I shoved food in my face while a candle was lit, that would be Wednesday when I poured some raisin bran on my laptop while I tried to work on letters of intent and lit a candle to keep me at least in one spot longer. I don’t know why I even have raisin bran. I do not like it. It is even yuckier than I remember it being…but I have it, so I’ve been using it for snacks when I need something to keep my fingers and mouth busy but don’t actually have a calorie or nutrition or even hunger need for a snack…
  3. What do you really want to be doing right now? Holding a neonate, preferable first few days of life, hanging out with friends, eating sour patch kids while getting an email letting me know there was a massive mistake and to make it up to me I can be the primary NICU pharmacist at [hospital I really want to work for] and spend most of my non-NICU DCP shifts in the ED but not have to do any kind of med rec. (Hey, if I’m gonna dream, might as well go big or go home).
  4. How many colleges did you attend? Depends on how you count. How many did I get a degree from? One. How many did I get a credit from and step foot on campus at least once? Three. How many did I earn credits from? I wanna say four, but I’m not sure… How many campuses have I set foot on whether I earned credits or just attended some type of camp or otherwise was on campus? Umm, somewhere around fifteen-ish? Depending on how you count being there like if my college shared a bookstore and library and a couple classrooms with the other school is leaving my school to go to the bookstore count as going to that school if I didn’t go anywhere that wasn’t shared by my school? Or if in 8th grade my ACT was held at a community college?
  5. Why did you choose to wear the shirt you have on now? Jokes on you. At the time of writing I am currently not wearing a shirt. I got distracted halfway through changing clothes after getting home from work so my shirt is sitting next to me but is not physically on my body at this time. I chose it though, because it was on the bathroom floor leftover from wearing it after work last night and didn’t have any spills on it or smell like sweat yet,so seemed like fair game for another evening. I should probably take a break and get my shirt on…BRB 🙂 Okay, now I’m fully attired and have a snack. It’s blueberry banana nice cream…except the banana wasn’t fully frozen yet and I used too much blueberry tea, so it is more like blueberry banana smoothie in a bowl. I probs should have just put a lid on the blender cup and drank it instead of pouring it into a bowl to eat with a spoon…
  6. Thoughts on gas prices right now? I couldn’t honestly tell you what they are at the moment, but they’ve certainly been very reasonable lately.
  7. First thought when the alarm goes off in the morning? Depends on the day…sometimes: finally!!! Other times: what else is going on? Am I behind on sleep? Do I have time for extra sleep? …well, I guess there might also be times my thought is where the h**k is that stupid switch to turn off the alarm…the hazards of being mostly blind until my glasses are on.
  8. Last thought before you go to bed at night? I really hope I get enough sleep and tomorrow is okay.
  9. Do you miss being a child? Sometimes. Adulting is hard sometimes. But it is also nice sometimes to have the independence that comes with being an adult. But food appearing even if I don’t go shopping was nice. And having siblings I always had a playmate.
  10. What errand/chore do you despise most? Probably taking out the trash. I’ve always had germ issues, especially with trash. I did a really good job on my own and got over a lot of germ issues a few years ago, but trash is something that is still hard for me. I do a lot better now – I can handle my own trash no problem, but the dumpster outside is terrifying. It is a whole lot better. I am able to do it now and without excessive washing after. I do a really good job.
  11. Up early or sleep in? I prefer getting up early, but that doesn’t always work in a world that doesn’t revolve around me. Especially with a job that keeps me up past midnight sometimes.
  12. Found love yet? YES!! I love kids!! I love having friends. I love candy. I love a lot of things.
  13. Favorite lunch meat? I don’t know. Lunch meat isn’t my favorite. I guess maybe hard salami. But not the brand I bought at Schnucks once. It was disgusting.
  14. What do you get at Walmart every time? I don’t go to Walmart very often. Jello is one of the only things I buy at Walmart. The other stuff there tends to be either things that are more expensive than I can get elsewhere or are low quality things that I don’t want. I do have a Walmart wish list though with a few kitchen items on it.
  15. Lake or Ocean? Umm, I guess lake. But I’m not sure. Both of them are kind of yucky. Yes, another germ thing.
  16. Is marriage outdated? No, marriage is not outdated. God created marriage to be between one man and one woman for one lifetime. Not to mention that in order for our species to continue to exist we kinda need marriage to exist so we can have babies.
  17. Ever crashed your car? Not really? But one time in high school I ran into the little red wagon in the corner of the garage and it made a little red stripe against the white walls of the garage where it rubbed up against it.
  18. Strangest place you’ve brushed your teeth? I brushed my teeth in the hallways at school sometimes my third year of college…but just with toothpaste and my tongue, no toothbrush…
  19. Somewhere you’ve never been but want to go? I don’t know…I don’t really like new places. New is scary. New is hard. When you are still a language learner of sorts, every new situation means you are in way way way over your head. I guess if I had to pick somewhere new I guess probably one of my friends’ houses that I haven’t been to yet.
  20. At this point in your life would you want to start a new career? Absolutely! I really really really want to be a resident next year and probably the year after that. After that I want to be a pediatric critical care pharmacist in NICU or emergency. Also, in the middle of second year my counselor wanted me to have another idea of what I could do if pharmacy didn’t work out. After months I finally came up with social work. At the time it was really mostly just something I could write down to answer the question. And now? Now I actually would be interested in going back to school for that someday, but I don’t want that to be my way of giving up. I don’t want to switch careers until I’ve actually gotten to the career I wanted in the first place.
  21. How old are you? I am almost 26 years old.
  22. Do you have a go to person? Kind of. I am more of a silent person. I am afraid of saying the wrong thing so I don’t say anything. I am afraid of inconveniencing other people so I keep my needs to myself. So it takes everything I have to reach out. Spring 2017 I did a really good job reaching out. I wasn’t necessarily able to express what I needed but I at least got far enough to express that I needed help.
  23. Are you where you want to be in life. No. And it’s hard. And my eyes are sweating now and not because of the temperature in here. So I’m not going to go on further with this question.
  24. Growing up, what were your favorite cartoons? Maybe Zaboomafoo? I also liked Dragon Tales. And I was too old for Telly Tubbies by the time they came out, but I kinda liked them anyway.
  25. What about you do you think has changed since you were a high school student? Well, I am no longer silent. And I’ve learned how brave I am. And I am a lot more out of shape. And I live alone. And there are a lot more foods I’ll eat.
  26. Looking back at high school, were they the best years of your life? Ummm, I’m not sure. There was a lot of pain then, but there has been a lot of pain in a lot of places of my life. There were good moments. High school is when I met my closest friend. I don’t know if there is a best year of my life. Every year is different. It isn’t necessarily better or worse, just different.
  27. Are there times you still feel like a kid? Sometimes I feel frustrated because I feel like I am acting like a baby, but I don’t think I ever actually feel like I AM a kid.
  28. Did you have a pager? Yep. My old church at home always had a nursery worker with a pager every morning. That way the room didn’t have more volunteers than they needed, but they had quick access to a volunteer if they needed more help. I carried that pager sometimes.
  29. Was there a hangout spot when you were a teenager? When I was a teenager I hung out on my way home from old church at home every Wednesday night at the corner near the top of the hill just past the second stop light if you started at my house to get there. It was a place to cry and pray.
  30. Were you the type of kid you’d want your children to hang with? Yes. I would hope that my children will be the type of kid who are willing to be patient with the kids on the fringes. It felt so good when kids included me. I want my kids to let other kids feel that way too.
  31. Was there a teacher or authority figure that stood out to you? My advisor late in college, the one who was also in charge of Michelle, she stands out to me because she hardly even knew me when she had to decide what to do with me when Michelle claimed I shouldn’t be in school. She knew barely anything about me, but was so certain that I was a good student that even when I was still stuck in protecting everyone and refused to let anyone know what had really happened, she fought for me. And she kept fighting for me even when I was hard to be with because I was so upset. That stands out to me.
  32. Do you tell stories that start with “when I was your age? Not very often…actually, probably not. I don’t spend a lot of time with people younger than me, and even though I am leading youth group now, I still struggle to use my words with the students.

Jesus Made Me a WARRIOR

(Warrior – Hannah Kerr)

 

Okay, here is the line that I love most in this song. “Every scar on my skin is a beautiful reminder of a moment when I didn’t give in and I walked through fire.” The image I get in my head is words written in blue on my arm describing all the hard things I’ve made it through in life surrounded by bright orange and yellow and red flames. I tried to recreate that image on my arm. I discovered it is difficult to write words right side up on my left arm and it is also difficult to write on my right arm because my left hand likes to write the letters too close together so I have to consciously think about spacing out the letters so they don’t land on top of each other. Also, my only orange and red washable markers are Crayola brand and they aren’t really and truly washable the way Roseart markers are and I don’t really want to go to work tomorrow with faded flamed on my arm.

 

Anyway, back on topic, it has taken me a while, but I recently have finally been realizing what I guess other people had been seeing for a long time. Brave isn’t just something I try to claim when I am scared out of my mind. Resilient isn’t just my battle cry trying to pretend I’m not hurt. The people who gave me those words weren’t just trying to give me a security blanket to hold onto and weren’t just totally crazy over-assessing my skillset. They simply saw what I couldn’t. While I am sometimes so much of a trees person that I’m not sure I’m even seeing a tree anymore and arguing that it really might just be some bark, they were standing further back seeing not only the trees, but the forest. (See, it’s not always bad that I learned to be very wary of others and cautious about letting anyone in to the inner circle; I need people who can see the world beyond two inches in front of my face…lol). They could see that the row of hurdles that I had already jumped and they could see that even though I’d missed a hurdle and fallen that I wasn’t staying down. I got back up and I kept trying…just like in elementary school when we had the all district field day and I had never ever had any problem with hurdles before and was actually pretty rockin’ awesome at it (for a fifth grader anyway) and on that day for the first time tripped and fell doing the hurdles. I might not have won the race, but I got up and I finished the race, and that is what counts.

 

I made it through bad bullying in school. I made it through changing churches at a time when my entire social world and all my plans and dreams revolved around the church I’d been going to before and at a time when there was a lot of other change going on to make my ground a little extra unsteady. I made it through navigating my world in near silence at a time when just saying hi to a friend earned me praise until I eventually became normal (whatever that is). Okay, fine, no one has ever accused me of being normal…that is something that I still am trying to figure out how to become. I made it through emotional abuse by someone who should have been part of my support system and who had the training to know not only how best to hurt me, but how to not get caught doing it. And I made it through multiple rounds of residency rejection that brought back memories of the abuse, because why wouldn’t my abuser use the thing that mattered most to me in life as one of the primary things to make sure I knew all the reasons I’d never be good enough for?

 

I made it through all those big things and so many little every day things, but like the song says, “you’ll never stop me; I’m a warrior. When I fall down, I get stronger.”

Gotta keep breathin’…I’m a Warrior

(Warrior – Hannah Kerr)

Sometimes the day isn’t even half over and it has already felt like an incredibly long day. So after an hour at the gas station Monday afternoon, my car was plugged into a battery charger until it said the battery was full. In theory that should have been plenty to be able to start at least one more time in the morning. Just in case I got ready super early to be able to leave before my mom in case I needed another jump to get going. Umm, yeah. About that. It didn’t start. We tried for an hour everything we could think of to jump it. Nothing… So frustrating. Called a car repair place that could get an emergency order for a battery and send someone who could hopefully get the car started to get to the shop to get it installed. Luckily when the guy arrived 75 minutes later, he was able to get the car started pretty quickly and I was able to get the battery taken care of. It was more expensive than where I wanted to go, but not significantly so, especially considering they kept me from needing a tow truck to get anywhere.

 

From there I drove back to the dealership I was at last week. They were reasonably polite and quick considering I didn’t have an appointment, but didn’t claim any responsibility. When the dude at the counter heard about the battery he said something like well I hope we didn’t mess something up, and if I wasn’t already at the end of my rope I wanted to ream him out that they better not have and if they did I want the price of the battery refunded as well as something for my inconvenience. Instead I just kept surviving through my day. They tried to claim that the splash guard not being fully connected wasn’t their fault and they were doing me some kind of favor putting it back, but they did it and I finally got to go home. By this point it was already way past lunch time.

 

But now I have a functioning car…that still has quite a bit of my weekend stuff in there because at this point I am so done with everything that I gave up. It’s one of those times when just continuing to go through the motions of life feels overwhelming and so things slip a little. And I have to do one of my least favorite shifts this evening. I need a vacation from my vacation. I feel like with all the other things going on I never really got to do much of my vacation plans. I am exhausted in like every way it is possible to be exhausted.

 

I know I’m strong brave and I am free

(Breakup song – Francesca Battistelli)

This evening it really hit me that there are some moments that, while painful, have shaped my life – without them I would not be who I am today.

 

Ummm…yeah, probably a month ago I wrote that one sentence then I got distracted. I know I had a somewhat long blog post planned inside my head, and I’m not sure if I typed more of it and forgot to hit save or if I really got distracted after only one sentence…but I’m honestly not that surprised if it was just that one sentence. I am kind of a short attention span kind of girl. If I am engaged in an activity I can lose track of time just doing it, but if not, I can totally get distracted practically before I’ve even started.

 

So anyway, I know I was working on it inside my head while I was wandering my apartment building while listening to an audiobook. I’m guessing, therefore, that it had something to do either with the book (I think it was Etched in Sand – Regina Marie Calcaterra) or about walking or my apartment.

 

I can’t remember enough about the book to really say anything there, but I can say something about walking…

 

So after that day in March when my world began to crumble, I discovered that being motion somehow dulled the pain just a little bit. While I was at home that first week that meant I was roller blading around the block in order to get *something* in my mouth. Then I moved back to the school area and didn’t have my rollerblades available. I started walking. I think it started with one of my friends inviting me to take a walk with her at a conference she invited me to hang out with her at which was awesome and would probably have been even more awesome if I’d had more capability to listen…

 

I ended up in a job I don’t really like and walked to work most days because I was afraid not to walk. I was struggling and I didn’t want to take away anything that could even maybe be helping. I would have done almost anything to take some of the pain away.

 

I started getting a reputation for walking everywhere, and took that on as an identity.

 

Then there was a summer walking competition and I signed up. I am a somewhat competitive person, so obviously I really want to win. That part is my normal self that has always been there…the part that came from the pain is that before, there is no way I would have signed up for any physical competition. Sure, I was a swimmer, but that was a sport where your only competition was yourself unless you were in a relay. I don’t like competing against other people at anything athletic. For that matter, just using the word athletic kinda makes me uncomfortable.

 

I’m not sure if my team is going to win. We were doing awesome until one member dropped off the team and also the team of marathoners started training. I probably could have taken more steps, but let’s be honest…sometimes I have a lot more important things to do like eat…and sleep…and eat some more. And check facebook and email and stuff…but a couple weeks ago someone on youtube said instead of thinking about how you’ve failed, reframe everything to realize that either you are winning or you are learning (not that you aren’t learning when you are winning, just that winning is your primary reward when you win). Maybe my team won’t win because I didn’t put in as much effort as maybe I could have, but I learned that I could have fun participating in a physical competition. And in my grief process I am learning that I am strong. I am brave.

 

Speaking of brave, I used my car horn for the first time ever Friday night! That might seem pretty trivial or weird or something, but for someone who struggled with SP/SM like I did, it was a huge accomplishment. See, the horn is a form of communication with strangers. A confrontational communication form. Way long ago there was a sermon series called Jesus and. The idea being that you shouldn’t have to add anything to Jesus. Well, we are supposed to emulate Jesus, and he says he is the door, and even now I am still tempted to add on just three letters…mat. No is still a hard word. I do sometimes stand up for myself, but it is still probably easier than it should be to get me to agree to something I don’t really want…although I suppose it does also make it easier to convince me to try things that I don’t know if I will like and end up finding out I really enjoy them. So yeah, I definitely did give myself a high-five. I was so proud of myself! That definitely more than made up for all the stress of driving on unfamiliar roads to get where I had previously been going.

 

One of the things that made it stressful was because someone started yelling out his window at me and I didn’t really know why and couldn’t understand what he was saying, but he looked angry. Umm, well, as it turns out, I’m guessing he was probably trying to tell me that something was hanging down under my car. I’m not sure what it is, but today my car wouldn’t start after I filled up at the gas station. My dad came to help me and his car couldn’t get it started so he pushed my car away from the pump and I called my mom. Even with the minivan it wouldn’t start right away, but after a while charging it finally started. When I got home my dad noticed there was something hanging down under the car. Since this weekend was my first time driving since I picked up my car from getting an oil change and inspection and the only things they said were even yellow lighted were the engine filter and the brake fluid, I am super frustrated. Chances are at least the piece hanging down is their fault, and while the battery may or may not be their fault, they supposedly tested it a week ago and it was working well, so seems like they didn’t actually test it. But anyway, now is probably a good time to add roadside assistance to my insurance since my previous subscription expired about a month ago…

 

Love can hold hands through it

(Slow Down – Nichole Nordemann)

I recently finished listening to a book about vulnerability…I wasn’t really sure if it would be good at all, but I have come pretty close to running out of audiobooks about fostering kids and wanted something different than my standard set of four books that I listen to a lot…so yes, as it turns out, there were definitely good points in the book. There were also things I didn’t necessarily agree with, but guess what, as an adult you have to realize that you don’t have to agree with absolutely everything anyone else says. It is okay to have and express your own opinions.

 

So yeah, here are some interesting points that I may or may not completely agree with but that I thought were umm, well, interesting…

 

“We live in a culture where we believe there is just not enough, that we are hyper-aware of lack…the first thing we do in the morning is we think to ourselves, I didn’t get enough sleep, and the very last thought in our mind as our heads hit the pillow is I didn’t get enough done, and everything in between those two moments is a litany of scarcity.”

 

Those are not necessarily the thoughts I have morning and night, but it definitely is an interesting perspective and I think it is definitely true that it is a lot easier to look at my life and see all the places of scarcity in my life and miss the places where I do not lack.

 

“I’m an expert fitter-inner. I mean, I study vulnerability for a living; I have to know you for 20 minutes to know exactly how to fit in with you and how to bring you to your knees and while it is kind of a super power for me, most of us have this ability, especially mental health professionals.”

 

As someone who felt on the outside looking in, I became a studier or real-world relationships…but the thing is, watching a conversation happen, even for 20 minutes, wasn’t nearly long enough for me to feel like I ever found the key to unlock the secrets that it seemed like everyone else knew about how to fit in. I tried so hard, but I never felt like I ever quite got it right. On that second part, I guess I didn’t focus on that part of it, but I guess it is probably true that though she clearly missed the memo on the professional and health part of her mental health professional status, that in the course of her training, M probably did pick up some ability to identify how to hurt people, and that maybe is how she was so good at figuring out how to hurt me so deeply and how to keep doing it even after the relationship was over and do it without getting caught doing anything bad enough to get herself in trouble. But you know, as I heal, I kinda feel sorry for her. Maybe this is just the fight the bullies talks they give all the time in school coming back to haunt me, but in those talks they always said that bullies hurt people because they feel inadequate about themselves. She wasn’t the brightest crayon in the box. I sense that if she’d used her personality for good she could have been a great person, but her feelings of inadequacy got in the way and made her feel like she had to hurt people to show herself to be dominant and on top. I really do admire her perseverance to pass her exams even though she kept failing. Failing never feels good even if you know in advance you are prolly gonna fail. And yeah, I was using a phone that year that could download apps really easily and proceeded to download every practice test app that I could find and the lowest score I got was 87%…and this was after only a singular intro psych class, so clearly the exam is just a minimum competency exam, but I am not saying this to make fun or point fingers at stupidity. I understand that everyone has subjects that they really struggle with. For me that struggle topic is history. I could take the same history class every year and 10 years from now I would probably still be working my butt off to get an A and would very likely be just barely passing if I tried to half-butt-cheek it like some of my peers can probably do. Let’s just say that the majority of the history I remember from APUSH is if you give Hitler a cookie…lots of stuff happens which ultimately ends in a war.

 

“Gremlins died when they got exposed to the light, and I think that is exactly how shame works…or dementors from Harry Potter – they basically suck every ounce of lightness out of you until you’re left feeling hopeless and like nothing is good in your life, and that’s what shame does.”

 

I feel like when I was listening to this on my way home from work there was like a super long paragraph in my head about how insightful this comment was…yeah, no memory now of what I was thinking then, but I still definitely like the way it sounds. It kind of reminds me, too, of about a month ago when I was thinking about how grief feels, so I’ll write about that instead…In everyone’s life, sometimes the lights dim or even go out, but they usually come back on in a relatively short time frame even though it might feel like a long time and the coming back on might be nearly imperceptible brightening until one day you wake up and realize the lights are back on all the way. In grief it is like the lights have gone completely out and sometimes you start to wonder if light is even real or if it was just something you dreamed up late one night. Everything is pitch black and you can’t understand why when you look out at the world around you everyone seems to still be living as if the lights are on. You wonder what is wrong with you that it is pitch black for you. You are afraid of letting other people in. Will they not understand your darkness? Will it plunge them into the darkness you experience all the time? Imagine if you were living in complete darkness and didn’t even believe light existed, that anything existed outside of the darkness – how hard that would be. Once you can acknowledge that light is a for real thing, just knowing it exists makes it easier sometimes but other times makes it more frustrating that something exists that would help but that is out of reach…anyway, people don’t always seem to understand that as you heal once in a while the lights briefly flicker on before going out again. It doesn’t mean everything is okay. It doesn’t mean you are totally happy. It is momentary and seems over before it even started, the memory quickly overtaken by the heavy darkness…yeah…thoughts along those lines occupied my entire walk home one day…maybe more than one walk…

 

“Men and women with high levels of shame resilience know when they’re in shame and here’s why: when we’re in shame we are not fit for human consumption. We normally, when we are around another person, will engage in a behavior that exacerbates shame, so what are your physical symptoms of shame…trauma symptoms. It’s the exact same if you were in Afghanistan right now and something traumatic happened. We experience shame as trauma. Shame is traumatic…shame is the threat of being unlovable. The definition of shame is the extremely painful belief or experience of thinking that we are unlovable, that we are unworthy of connection and belonging.”

 

Shame being like trauma I think gave me another understanding of my experience. At the beginning of third year, I had no shame in being in counseling. To me it was just something I was doing to help me and was something I would be happy to let anyone know about. I was perfectly willing to share my experience and what it was like. In fact, when Psych Central was looking for people to describe what therapy was like from a client perspective, I was all in. They said they were considering offering compensation if your work was published and I never received compensation, but they did publish my submission. Anyway, my lack of shame was a risk for M, particularly considering the few people I did talk to at least once in a while were staff members and that I had started blogging which gave me a platform where it was at least a little easier for me to use my words. Therefore, in order to better ensure that what was happening behind closed doors would stay behind closed doors, she had to teach me to be ashamed as an extra security policy. So I had the cumulative trauma of both the abuse and the shame. No wonder I was really struggling. Looking back, I am so proud of myself. I have no idea how I survived that, but I know that since I did, I must be super strong. I am so proud of myself. It isn’t something I can obviously share in an interview situation about my biggest success, but looking back, that probably is one of the biggest things I’ve ever done in my life to make it through that situation. I was not defeated. I am a survivor and no one can take that away.

 

“When we reach out and share our story we need to make sure, and this is so important, that we choose people who have earned the right to hear our story…We need to share with people who have earned the right to hear our story; We need to share with people with whom we have a relationship that can bear the weight of the story…we either own our story or we stand outside or our story and hustle for our worthiness, here’s the magic about owning our story. When you own your story, here’s the power of that: you get to write the ending.”

 

I do agree that it can be super powerful to share your story with someone who will listen and seek to understand…but I love the “secret” at the end of the quote. I’d never thought about defining the story as not over yet and that giving me permission to write the ending. M wanted the abuse story to end with and I never really escaped the grasp throughout my time in school. Instead I can end it with and I have learned how powerful and strong I really can be. My story could easily end and I completely failed at getting a residency despite trying over and over and no one wanted me. Instead I am working on writing my story mentioning finding my place as many of the tech’s favorite pharmacist in a small community hospital in the middle of nowhere while still looking for ways to keep my dream alive.

 

“Our work product is pretty crappy because we developed most of it while we were exhausted…And you don’t get to say ‘and my life will start when I’m done. Here’s my project and I’ll be worthy of love and acceptance when I’m done.’ …One of the reasons we don’t play and rest is that we’re waiting.”

 

K yeah, it is super easy to think of this as just a place of waiting until someday hopefully when I will finally be in a job where I can really find joy seeking my passions…but if I am going to be here at least most of another year, wishing and yearning for the someday ain’t gonna help me. That would be a lousy way to live. Instead, I am going to do what I can to make the most of where I am right now. And someday I hope I won’t be here anymore, but if I am, I certainly don’t want to have spent the entire time thinking about how much I wish I were somewhere else. I don’t need to be in a rush to make it where I want to go. I have my whole life and career ahead of me. If it takes 10 more years to get where I want to be, that would still give me probably at least 30 years in that dream position, which is a pretty long time, particularly once you consider that I am not yet even 30 years old!

 

And then there was one more quote that I didn’t bookmark and do not want to hear again…there was a section that said something along the lines of if you talk too much or share about yourself too much people won’t want to be friends with you and it will push them away. That is not a message that is good for me to hear as someone who had selective mutism on her differential for a while. I am not necessarily the star of the show or the light of the party or anything, but compared to how I used to be, I am super loud and out there now. People who meet me now can’t imagine me how I used to be and think I am exaggerating if I try to explain…but the anxiety that stole my voice so completely for so many years is not always just a memory. I can and do speak a lot more and more easily now, but there are definitely times it is very clear I am a communication avoider. I try really hard, but some days the words still get stuck. To be honest, a lot of days the words still get stuck…so a mention that sharing could lead to a decrease in potential friend is not a message that is very safe for me to hear.

This is your anthem

(Anthem – Superchic[k])

 

I remembered this song recently. And I love it now.

 

I want to make it true of me.

 

“Here’s to the ones, the ones who don’t give up.”

 

I am still terrified of trying again and failing again and of course the logistics of it all, but I don’t want to give up and just accept that I have to keep living here. I guess it was kind of like what someone said at church this week. It was a good goal, but it is not somewhere I want to stay. That person was talking about engagement, but I guess getting the job I currently have is kind of the same. I desperately needed something at least kind sorta full time and I got this. It fills a need, but it certainly is not a good place to stay. I want out. I need out.

 

“We are fire inside, we are lipstick and cleats, we are not giving up, we are playing for keeps. We are girls with skinned knees, we are concrete and grace, we are not what you think, can’t keep us in our place.”

 

I feel like this line is basically a long way of saying that broken girls are powerful because they know how it feels to hurt and haven’t given up.

 

“You’ll never let them say you’ll never get that far”

 

I was told over and over in school that I would never make it, that I’d never be a pharmacist, that I might as well quit and give up because I wasn’t going to make it as a pharmacist anyway. No one would ever want me. It still feels true sometimes. I want so badly to be strong and refuse those lies, but sometimes it just feels way too true and life feels so hopeless.

 

“Here’s to the girls on their boards with bruises and scars. Here’s to the girls whose fingers bleed from playing guitar. Here’s to anyone who never quit when things got hard.”

 

I feel like this is saying it doesn’t matter what you are passionate about, whether it is popular or not, but whatever is your passion, pursue it to the fullest. Don’t do it halfway or try to stay safely in bounds. Stretch beyond what you think your limits are. For me this means not settling for a job where the best part of my day is going home. It means finding a way somehow to escape even if it is hard and costly physically, financially, emotionally, or all of the above plus some.

 

“We are fire inside. We are an army asleep. We are a people awaking to follow their dreams.”

 

This is so me. I am, admittedly, very passive. But even though people don’t always believe it is possible, there is definitely a fire that burns inside me sometimes. Wake it up and watch my emotions overflow.

 

“We don’t have time for your games; we have our own goals to score. We have trophies to win instead of being one of yours.”

 

I am a people pleaser. That and my quiet passivity and excessively loyalty made me an easy target for abuse, but I want to refuse to continue to be hurt. I want to refuse to let the abuse define me. I am not who M said I was. And I am no longer powerless as I was on campus. I am strong. I am brave. I am a survivor.

 

I’ve played it safe…my whole life, now things have changed

(Not Backing Down – Blanca)

 

I was reading the comment section on a blog that I don’t read very often and really only read for the outrageous comment section. But I was pleasantly surprised to see someone politely comment that our world struggles to handle neuro-divergent out of the box kids. It got me thinking…

 

I don’t think I’ve ever really fit in very well. Eventually I learned to put my focus on trying to shove myself into a poorly fitting box. The box I chose was labeled focused achiever. People told me I was going places, so I guess I took that on as an identity and tried to fit into the box. I mean, I guess I did go places…just not necessarily the places I intended to go.

 

The box finally ripped open when I not only didn’t get me dream residency, but didn’t get a residency at all. My life shattered. My dreams died. All the lies I’d been told about never making it, never being good enough, wasting my time on school because I’d never be wanted as a pharmacist felt more true than ever. And the one thing that was letting my mis-fittedness fly at least a little under the radar came unstrapped as I came toppling out of that box.

 

A little over a year later I am learning, I guess, that it is okay to be, umm, differently-achieving. I failed over and over at residency, but I did succeed at obtaining a full-time job. I may really dislike my job, but being here I feel like has helped me see myself differently. Change is hard for me, so even though as a college student I was technically an adult, I still felt like a kid. Getting a job as a resident would have placed me in another student role which would have let me continue in my same path. By being hired into an “adult” role, I have gradually learned to actually see myself as an adult. I’m not sure if that really affects much of anything else, but I think maybe that perspective maybe helps serve me in managing other changes. And while it sounded to me like my employer was specifically seeking out new grads to fill the position that I have, I overheard someone else saying that it is rather uncommon for them to hire new grads…so IDK what to think…although I think it is frustrating for new grads to be an uncommon group to hire, because guess what new grads need in order to become something more than just a new grad: an actual job in their profession, yet if people won’t hire new grads, eventually they won’t have veterans in the field to hire either.

 

And as much as I desperately hope that I can escape from the job I am in, I also recognize that life isn’t a race. Assuming I retire around 65 years old, I have roughly 40 years of work left. Even if it takes me 10 years to get where I want to be, that still leaves me about 30 years in a career I love. That sounds like practically an eternity considering I am not yet 30 years old. That perspective really helps me make it through the day. People on the internet say that the days are long but the years are short, and I really hope that one day that second half feels more true.

 

There are about a million road blocks in my way, but I have not come this far to give up and just, as one person said a few weeks ago on the work complaint column (actually a Q&A, but primarily used as a complaint column), work just hard enough to not be fired.

 

And I need to be realistic. Even this far later I do still feel waves of grief trying to pull me away from shore and drown me in the sea. Even if today someone could promise me the residency of my dreams that I could start tomorrow and somehow managed to work out all the details so I could seamlessly transition into that new role, it wouldn’t completely eliminate the grief I have walked through. There will still be scars as a reminder of the intense pain even in the joy of that new position.

 

To be honest though, as much as I want to whole-heartedly throw myself into the search and fill my heart with hope that there is something better waiting if I can just hold on a little longer, I am afraid to believe there really is any chance of anything positive coming from all my money and effort this time. There wasn’t last time when I was arguably a better candidate, so why would anyone want me now? But at the same time I really want to believe there is a way out somewhere if I just try hard enough. But I am also scared that if I let myself believe there is a chance I will just be more devastated later…and the more effort and hope I put into this the harder it’ll hurt when I fail again.

 

Totally off topic, but I saw a post recently about this teacher at a college that people said made them feel uncomfortable. I was really proud of them for coming forward and trying to talk about the situation. That is something I was not brave enough to do until it was way too late when I was being abused. It made me think, too, about one of the big differences between high school and college. In high school if there is a teacher you really don’t want to have, there is nearly always at least one other teacher for the class that you can request to have instead, and given a valid reason, you will likely be able to completely avoid the teacher you don’t want – because of my experiences in high school my parents were able to request certain teachers for my brothers to be placed away from. Unfortunately, in college, (at least if you go to a teeny tiny school half the size of a standard high school like I did) everyone, both staff and students, are all in a small geographic area at the same time and just have to learn to deal with it the best they can. And if there is a teacher you don’t want to have, then you either need to throw away your progress and switch schools or suck it up buttercup and deal with it, because not only will you constantly see that person around campus for your however many years of school, but they are the sole holder of your ticket from one semester into the next, and possibly not only the ticket holder for this semester, but also your next three semesters…as in they teach all the sections (or the only section) of classes you absolutely must take in order to graduate. And apparently this is at least moderately true at larger schools, because the school in the news was a larger school, yet one of the students in the story said that the class this teacher taught was one she had to take in order to graduate and she considered changing her dreams to accommodate not taking this class…so yeah, there are definitely things about high school I’d love to change, but the fact that there were multiple teachers for nearly every class is something that can be hugely beneficial, though at the same time it does introduce a higher level of non-comparability of grades since there is no guarantee even using the same rubric that two different people will grade identically. Although really that can also be a problem from one semester to the next with the same teacher, or sometimes even from one student to the next if the teacher happens to play favorites…we live in a broken world, and sometimes that means that there are a lot of disappointments and frustrations.

Even a million scars doesn’t change who you are

(Beautifully broken – Plumb)

 

I really really really don’t want to go back to work tomorrow. The week before I left I had been looking up how possible it would be for me to just quit with nothing lined up…and umm, yeah, I think financially I would do just fine for a while with no job, but pharmacy is a small world, and I think I would probably kill my chances of ever getting a job I enjoyed more if I quit…and really the last day I worked before my time off was a lot better than the previous two days and made me start thinking again that I could hold on a little longer.

 

But I still have to go back tomorrow…

 

I’ve been thinking, if I could change one thing about my life, what would it be…and I was trying to decide between the abuse situation or not getting a residency.

 

It is hard because it is very possible that if the abuse hadn’t happened that I would have actually gotten the residency…but at the same time, there are no guarantees that is the case, and I would probably be a totally different person today if I hadn’t been abused. Broken people are powerful because they know they can survive.

 

People have told me I should get counseling to help work through the traumas I have experienced. I am at a point where I am not sure whether that is really necessary. In my opinion, the goal is not to erase all evidence of scars. The goal is to look back and see the scar as a sign of how strong you were rather than looking down to see continuously oozing wounds. I am reaching a point for the abuse anyway, where I look back and see how strong I am. Sure, I fell, but she had so much power over me I didn’t stand much of a chance, but I didn’t stay down, and I didn’t get kicked out of school. I fought my way through the rest of the program while she continued to try to make my life as difficult as possible. I made it!

 

The residency thing? Well it was the source of a LOT of pain, and is the reason I am stuck in my current job that I really don’t want to go back to tomorrow…so right now it feels like the right answer to that question is that the one thing I’d like to change is I’d like to have had a residency after graduation…but even so, I do look back at that too and see how strong I am. I made it.

 

Sometimes I look back at the abuse and everything linked to that and feel angry for what littler Wiggle Worm had to go through at the hands of someone who should have been helping rather than hurting her. I feel angry that someone took advantage of Wiggle Worm’s trusting and kind attitude to harm her. A few weeks ago when I was walking home I said to myself, “I hate her,” and then I wondered, can hate and love co-exist? I know I care about even the people who have hurt me, and I know God says to love your enemies, but does that preclude the possibility of also hating the people or situation that hurt you?

 

All I Need is What You’ve Given Me

(Well of Lies – Flyleaf)

Sometimes it makes me angry when companies try to do something nice and people blast them with hatred because people are entitled brats sometimes…yep, I went there…

 

So build a bear held a pay your age day. Awesome, right? Well, as you can imagine, it was very crowded and not too long after opening they already had to close the lines because they had as many people as they could handle all day lined up. Note, that they closed the LINES, not the STORES. If you were already in line BEFORE the lines were closed you still got to wait for hours in line to get a bear. Is that fair? Absolutely, it was noted from the start that the event was only “while supplies last.” Build a Bear could have let you stand in line all day just to tell you hours later at closing that no, you can’t have a bear, not yours, but instead they had the decency and courtesy to acknowledge as early as they could that they had reached capacity for the event.

 

Build a bear then went the extra mile and offered vouchers to anyone trying to join the line after the cut off. Build a bear then went like an extra marathon and offered a new birthday program extending the pay your age offer to your entire birthday month every year. Build a bear then went another extra couple marathons and offered vouchers to EVERYONE ON THE INTERNET whether they even had any interest or ability to attend the original event in the first place or not. And these vouchers were not chump change. These vouchers were for $15 off, which is BETTER than paying your age anyway, because like some of the sane commenters pointed out, most of the bears are $12-15, so with the voucher, the bear is FREE.

 

And people are insanely upset. Which is retarded. Yep, I definitely did go beyond just stupid to the ultimate elementary school insult, retarded. People are saying that they were discriminated against or disability shamed because they weren’t allowed to cut the line because they or their children has a disability. Umm, you were absolutely not discriminated against or disability shamed. Both of those terms imply you were treated differently because of a disability, when in fact your complaint is that you were treated identically to every other person in line. Unlike seems to be popular opinion, it is a disability, not a gold status for life card. Having a disability doesn’t mean you should expect extra privileges that no one else accesses. Some places do offer special privileges for disabled people, but it should be viewed as a gift, not an expectation. Y’all acting like everyone in the world owes you compensation for having a disability are pretty much why disability shaming became a thing. People resent that you have an entitlement complex.

 

People are also saying that the event should have only been for people who needed it and people who just wanted a discount on a toy should have been turned away. Umm, since when is a stuffed animal EVER a need? I can’t think of a single instance in which a stuffed animal is anything more than a want…they aren’t even a toy most kids actually enjoy playing with. And if for some reason your kid does somehow need a stuffed animal, like another sane commenter pointed out, you can do like she did and take your kids to the local dollar store to pick out an even cheaper stuffed animal…without even having to wait in an hours long line.

 

Yeah, I get really angry about these things. Build a bear went out of their way to do something super nice for the community and did so much that they really didn’t have to do, and people are bashing them for it.

 

It is the same thing with my grocery store. They have coupons and deals advertised on their website every week and post a few of the deals they think might be more exciting on their facebook page…where people berate them for having a deal on this product when that product is the one they would prefer to buy, or why is it only the single cup of yogurt for 25 cents when I think I should be able to buy the 8-pack for 25 cents because that would be a better deal, or why is only the deal only good for fresh carrots when frozen carrots taste better, or it’s not fair that only that brand of granola bars is on sale this week because I’m allergic to that brand so I should be able to substitute whatever brand I can have instead but the cashier said no and that is discrimination. Umm, no, the sale is on whatever items it is on and that is for the store to decide, not you. You may notice that all the stores in your area have deals on almost the same items each week. That isn’t just a weird coincidence. It is because the sales are often based at least in part on deals the manufacturer is willing to give the store to promote purchase of their product. Those items are the special because those re the items whose manufacturer was willing to spend a little extra to promote this week which is why no, unless you get a spineless employee, you can’t substitute the gallon of super premium ultimate milkshake for the 8-oz bottle of shoppers value white skim milk. The manufacturers and the stores have no obligation to give you any discount on any product. The correct response is “thank you,” not “but I wanted more.”

 

Okay, rant over…

 

This post has been on my computer for a few days. I didn’t really know why, but I didn’t feel ready to hit publish. Then I realized why it wasn’t getting published. It doesn’t feel finished because anyone who really knows me would likely quickly identify that I have been through way too much in my life to ever get this angry over something as silly as people getting butt hurt and rude about stuffed animals and groceries. But the other reason I was feeling angry isn’t something I know how to write about on the internet. I guess it is a good reminder that there is often a lot more going on than just the center stage act.