Tomorrow.

In the midst of writing papers, formulating teaching projects, learning the ins and out of IV tubing, and the endless grind that is studying, I’ve come to realize something. My elusive someday is about to arrive. You see, after three and a half years of slogging through endless schoolwork, thinking about “someday” when I’ll be able to be an actual person, I’m nearing the end. I see the light at the end of the tunnel, and I’m hoping that it’s not a train.

College was hard. It’s where I realized that I wasn’t nearly as special or smart or talented as I thought. It’s where I first experienced real loneliness and rock-bottom, clinical depression. It’s the years my grandpa died, my memere followed, and my family fell to pieces. It’s where I learned that my joints were wrong and they would never be right. It’s where I traded in some of my idealism and optimism for a heavy dose of cynicism and anger. It’s where I had to fight against the nay-sayers who told me over and over that I had no business being a nurse. It’s when I ended  a relationship with one of the very best friends I ever had, leaving a gap that I still can’t quite fill. It’s where I learned that keeping my mouth shut and retreating into a quiet world is the best way to stay alive.

Needless to say, college was rough. But I’m 24 days out from graduation. I potentially have my dream job lined up. I have been cleared to graduate, if I pass my last classes. I just got my first car, and scheduled my appointment to get contacts so I can finally feel like a normal person. My family is all in one place for the first time in years, and I think I’ve finally met some friends that I can trust to be there for me. I may have even found a church with like-minded people.

But I’m scared. I’ve been beaten down for so long, I’m worried that I’ll get right up to Someday, and it’ll slip away again. I’d like to believe that all my hard work is about to pay off, but I’m terrified that it’ll be snatched away, and I’ll have to linger in disappointment for another indefinite amount of time. I did what I had to do to get through school – I ignored people, I always put my schoolwork in front of everything, and when people needed help, I hid, afraid to share my time and compromise the time that I had set aside for school. I’ve been selfish. And with all that, I certainly don’t think that I deserve a a boatload of good.

I’ve been stuck in a holding pattern. I know, I know, I should have made the most of life in right that moment, but school overshadowed everything, leaving me forever exhausted and so stressed out that my last blood pressure read 143/95 (That’s pretty high, by the way.) I want real life to start. I want to help people. I want life to be beautiful again. I want to regain my optimism. I want to like people again. I want my health back.  I want to find joy again.

Is that too much to ask?

I hope Someday really is right around the corner.

Why I will forever be single.

I have been in one relationship in my entire life, and it ended after three years when I realized that he simply wasn’t the man that I wanted to marry. Was there more to it than that? Yeah, but that all is besides the point. The point is, for the first time in my life, I am in a place where I can date. There are people of all kind, not just the mere 20 I went to highschool with (it was a small Christian school). But I’ve found an unfortunate thing.

See, I’m waiting until I’m married to sleep with anyone. Part of it is my old-fashioned morals, part of it is a desire to avoid disease and an accidental pregnancy, and part of it is a bit of hopeless romantic in me that wants to wait for my one true love. Sounds good right?

Apparently not. I was in a brief, uh, thing? with a guy for a couple of weeks, and it seemed great. I liked him, he liked me, we had a lot of common and our dates were really fun. And then I dropped that bomb on him, and he completely wrote me off. Sure, he still texts and said he wants to be friends, but the message was clear: if you are in a relationship, you owe the other person your body. And if you are unwilling to do that, they will move on to someone who is.

Granted, I could go to church and find a nice church boy, but I know from experience that they push the limits too, and generally, they aren’t very interesting or manly.

If that is what people expect out of relationships nowadays, fine, do what you will. I really don’t care, but I don’t want to be involved in it. But it’s terribly disheartening to know that it doesn’t matter how smart or funny or pretty or successful or interesting I am – if I don’t put out, I’m out.

I hope some guy appreciates me someday. I think I’ve got a lot going for me – I’ve mastered all the domestic arts, I have a college education in the nursing profession, I dabble in a range of interests, and can be happy inside or out. I play music, ride bikes, cooks delicious things, take photographs, grow plants, ride dirtbikes, and know how to do my hair effectively. Yet, no one seems interested.

Ah well. I guess my person is just going to turn out to be five cats.

Laughter.

Laughter is good for the soul, you know? I think I’m going to end up living until about 130 years old because I laugh so much. Also, in a conversation with a friend, I realized that I never outgrew my overwhelming propension for doing stupid things that crack me up.

For instance, Today, knowing that one roommate was gone and another was going to be asleep for another couple of hours, I made it a point to sit on all the furniture in the house incorrectly, and only stopped when the combination of flopped over an armrest and laughing started to hurt.

A couple of days ago, I “broke up” with a guy I had been casually seeing because of irreconcilable differences, but I miss him. So when a song called, “Falling in Love at a Coffee Shop” came up on the radio (we had met at a coffeehouse), I actually threw my phone at the television. Luckily, I realized this was crazy and slowed the throw just before it left my hand, so my phone just kind of fell on the floor. And that cracked me up. So pathetic.

I was bussing at the restaurant I work at last night, and found out that I could sneak out the back door with dishes and run up the side alley to put them away without any customers seeing me. The wait staff did, and probably wondered what kind of crazy their boss hired this time, but I was enjoying myself.

I bought brake cables to fix my bicycle’s back brakes, which have been out of commission for several months now, but I like looking at the way they are wrapped up like a fancy bracelet too much to actually use them for their intended purpose.

And finally, my coffee maker thing messed up and dumped nearly all the grounds in my cup of coffee this morning, something that I did not notice until I did, in fact, swallow an entire mouthful of coffee grounds. I’m pretty sure I’m hearing colors right now.

My life is amusing.

Couch potato lifestyle.

First off, I could never be an actual couch potato – I don’t own a couch and I am in fact a human bean. So, that is out….

But in all seriousness, I just spent my entire measly paycheck on various medical supplies to offset my most recent bicycle crash, the pain that comes with logging 80 miles (!) in one week, and the arthritis like pain developing in my wrists and fingers due to excessive and hard restaurant work. If I were to lead a more sedentary lifestyle, I would probably be in less pain and would be more wealthy… but I would I be richer? What a lame life!

I’m really, really, REALLY glad that I can ride my bike and work such a stressful job and still be, for the most part, okay. I’m even more glad for days off to relax and let my body rest and heal.

You know is frustrating, though? I have a legitimate excuse to be a couch potato – I have a syndrome, and I still do things, regardless of the pain. Lots of people, many in my friend circle included, don’t have any problems except laziness, yet they refuse to capitalize on the fact that they, a. have strong healthy bodies, or b. could potentially have a strong, healthy body with a little work. ARGH. It frustrates me.

Anyways…. I gotta go chill. I’m going to gymnastics tonight.

Biking.

Somehow in the jumbled mess that is finals week, I managed to secure a job. Now, I have applied for tons of jobs and and off campus, and never seem to get any luck, so I broadened my scope and agreed to a job in Ann Arbor when it was offered. (Okay, I jumped enthusiastically and thanked the girl a million+ times. Agreed is a major understatement.)

So, we fast forward to Tuesday night, when the last table had been bussed, the restaurant was cleaned, and I had no more people to host. I headed over to the bus station and a feeling of dread creeped over me. The buses ran until about 11:30, which was fine on the weekdays, but on the weekends, they stop running at 6, leaving me stranded in Ann Arbor.

Here’s where another bit comes in – I don’t have a car. I don’t have money for a car. If I had money for a car, I wouldn’t have money for insurance and gasoline. IF I blah, blah, blah, you get it. And the thought of continually begging/mooching rides off my friends at 10:00 a night is an awful, terrible, no-good, very bad idea in my hyper-independent mind.

But I have a bike.

A janky bike, but a bike nonetheless. The back brakes don’t work well, and the seat will occasionally drop, leaving you hovering in mid-air and startled. It doesn’t change gears very well, and it’s sized for a thirteen year old, not a twenty year old with long legs. It’s banged up and scratched and dented because I crash frequently occasionally. But I love that it goes over bumps like they aren’t even a problem, and I can crunch down and put everything I’ve got into pedaling.

There is a link between Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti called the Border-2-Border trail, a hiking/biking/running/walking trail that will eventually go all the way across Washtenaw county. However, there is enough of it completed to get me from my home to Ann Arbor without ever having to go on a road or a potentially dangerous spot. So when my dear friend suggested that we bike to Ann Arbor because we had no more school and were young and wild and free, I agreed.

22 miles later, we pulled into our friend’s house to use his foam roller and other muscle-stuff and discuss our journey. We made it! And then we explored. And then we checked out the four mile loop around the rowing team’s section of the river, and pet little dachshunds out for a stroll. And then we headed back, which is when we started to realize that this may be too much for one girl running on 3 hours of sleep, and another girl with a stupid syndrome. With the cry of  “This is the second hardest part!” at every hardest part, we made it, the wind to our faces in both directions.

So, when public transportation and personal transportation fails, I will have my bike. I’ve already gotten some cracks about how Ill probably just crash, or how a daily 9 mile bike ride is too much, but really, there is no other option. I’m serious about this. Heck, I even got a bike helmet! (It’s blue! And looks incredibly stupid in the manner of bike helmets that are incredibly stupid)

You know what the best part about all this was? No pain. As of this year, I have been in pain every single day. My jaw. My hips. My knees. My fingers. My joints always hurts and they never get better… but a couple miles in, the pain transferred to my muscles and stayed there. I felt normal, like I could accomplish things, or be athletic, or not be held back by old person limitations. And the only thing that hurts today is the scrape from falling over a curb, the bruise from smacking a tree, the other bruising from catching my seat lever, the…..

Ahem. This summer will be a grand adventure that will leave me dead or with excellently developed leg muscles. Let’s hope for option #2, shall we?

Weirdness.

Lasst night I was asked out by a very attractive man. I almost considered his invite, and then he informed me that he has a fiancee who has a boyfriend, but, “they won’t mind.”

Wat?

Also, a very old Russian man told me I was, “very charming”, but in a Russian accent, of course.

I attract strange men. And now I have to study because finals start next week.

Fearless music!

Why are people so timid about music? I mean, people generally pick a genre that they like and then never explore anything outside of it, and that’s really sad.

But what is even more sad is when you find a great, but out there kind of band, and no one will listen to it because fast and furious rock opera music based off a 1980s video game is not there thing. (The Protomen are actually excellent, by the way)

For instance, I have recently been introduced to something called “chiptunes”. There remixers take 8 bit sound effects and work them into electronic dance music sounds. Although a lot of it is just noise, some of it it really excellent and worth listening too. I mean, at least there is some sense of creativity involved, right?

People like to throw around words like, “hipster”, and “arrogant”, and “music snob”, when they talk to me, but really, I just love music that is musically good and lyrically creative. I don’t want to hear any more dongs about one night stand and drinking lots of booze and that one perfect person that made your life complete.

I get scoffed at for my great love of owl city, but if you can get past the girly voice, his lyrics are interesting. They’re clever. He weaves worn metaphors and sayings into something fresh and new. His music sometimes follows the basic C-G-Am-F progression, but sometimes he throws you for a loop, and its great.

Or Andrew Bird! I mean, the guy doesn’t even have a genre because he’s so unique. And his lyrics sound like nonsense, until you listen to them over and over and over and realize that he is actually addressing deep and worrisome issues that people are faced with everyday.

I’m sure that most mainstream musicians love what they do and sing what they mean… but it’s lame. And it’s dumb. And…..it’s dumb. And it’s lame.

So, go listen to something new. Try a rock opera, or chiptunes. Look up OverClocked Remix, and then turn on some 80s alternative rock. Maybe some whispered indie folk pop like Iron & Wine, Noah & the whale, or Sea Wolf? Oh, and Andrew Bird. Lots of Andrew Bird.