Step Back to Go Forward

Sometimes you have to take a step backward to go forward.

Today I joined the ranks of many others my age and moved back home. After living in my own place for 4 years, 3 of those shared with my ex, I finally burnt out, broke down, and moved home. It’s not because I want to avoid being an adult. While that is not a false statement, I moved back home due to financial hardship. I’ve mentioned this several times on here that I had to work 60-80 hour weeks in order to make ends meet in a one bedroom apartment in a suburban area. I have been eating one meal a day and then upsetting my stomach with enough espresso shots to ward off hunger of any other meals a normal human would require. Over 50% of my income without working extra hours was going to rent. I can’t even begin to talk about how unacceptable that is, because I know I’m not the only one. 

It is exceedingly strange to be back in my childhood bedroom as a twenty-something divorced adult. Luna has taken to it rather well this time. I had brought her to the house once before so the complex could do a preliminary inspection of the apartment without a cat getting in their way and she spent all of her time underneath my bed. It only took her a few hours today before she emerged from under the sofa to explore the house. So far I think she is quite pleased, although there are still some slight fur remnants of my first late fur child, Sweetie, who left us last summer, that Luna is smelling. 

I have set up my room in a weird child/adult hybrid. I’ve fit the bookshelf back where it was before but the contents have changed somewhat. The bedroom decorations have gone from torn out magazine pages of Demi Lovato, Ashely Tisdale, and Vanessa Hudgens, to white string lights and my pride flag. I do have a Harry Potter poster from college I’ll probably add to that, but it’s been a long day and I’m ready to veg out for a few hours. I worked out first thing in the morning, showered, and immediately began packing, moving, and unpacking, and then sat down to write this. It’s been about 12 hours since I woke up. And I have to go to work tomorrow. 

On the bright side, this is temporary. I will be able to put away 50% of my paycheck every month, actually eat food again, maybe take a few trips, maybe actually hang out with friends (after I get friends), and I think my next step is buying a property. Not sure what, not sure where, but I know that whatever it is I am nowhere near having a down payment in my bank account. Maybe it’s a step back. Or it’s just another step forward. If this is the new step for my generation in becoming an adult then I embrace it wholeheartedly. We can’t follow in our parents’ footsteps, but we can definitely make our own. Maybe this is just what our journey looks like. 

Tattoos

I stopped in my local Panera this morning and one of the cashiers asked what my Sailor Moon tattoo said. I then noticed that she had a tattoo that said “o’hana” in Lilo & Stitch inspired style and a Deathly Hallows tattoo. Since I also have a Disney and Deathly Hallows tattoo we instantly bonded. All barriers came down. We could have instantly become friends.

And that is what I love about tattoos. They don’t have to have a special meaning behind them. You get them because you like them and you want them. They show a side of you that would otherwise be harder to show off. They show what you like. They show a deeper side of you. And I think that’s brave to be so open with who you are to wear that stuff permanently on your body where everyone can see; to go “I like this thing, I’m gonna have it sewn into my skin in ink where it’ll sit forever for everyone to see.”

People get tattoos for different reasons, but whatever the reason they show the world who you are, and I don’t mean in the way people in the past have perceived people with tattoos. We aren’t thugs or dangerous people. We’re people who like art and things so much we get it put onto our bodies for everyone to see and to remind us of who we are, why we are, who we’ve lost, what we like, what we believe in, etc.

I’ve never once regretted my tattoos. Even now that I’m in a job that doesn’t allow me to have visible tattoos and I am going to have to spend my summer wearing long sleeves I don’t regret getting them. Because off the clock I can show them off again and have opportunities to find like-minded people like that girl in Panera. Tattoos bring people together. I hope that one day they aren’t demonized by employers anymore. Until then, I’ll spend my other 128 hours of the week showing my tattoos off, getting more, meeting new people, and making friends just by saying, “ohmigosh I love your tattoo!”

Week #45 of 2015

Nov 1

IMG_2492Daylight savings threw me wayy off! This picture is actually from the night of my high school graduation, but the one picture I had from November 1st was kind of super embarrassing and I destroyed it. I posted this on my Facebook earlier this week because apparently my old high school was having a crisis and one of my favorite teachers was asking for support. I don’t know if things are better now or not.

Nov 2

IMG_2493I started NaNoWriMo a day late, but it hasn’t hindered my progress. A few people have already hit 50k words and I’m upset I’m not one of them. I do have a movie to edit, a screenplay competition to write, and a whole bunch of other crap to do, though, so considering I’m still ahead in word count anyway I should be fine.

Nov 3

IMG_2497It got really cold really fast here and we woke up to ice crystals on our car. I tried to take a picture, but I didn’t try that hard…

Nov 4

IMG_2520It might have felt winter-like but there are still plenty of fall leaves!

Nov 5

IMG_2544I had a job interview on the West Side on Thursday, but got hired on the spot at a better place so I visited my cat a bit before going home. I can’t wait to live closer so I can visit her all the time. I’m not sure she’s as excited as I am.

Nov 6

IMG_2548The sunset on my walk home from work.

Nov 7

IMG_2552Saturday night was like the first time I’d spent an evening with the Actor in a long time. His play opens this week so I never see him anymore with all the rehearsals. Sometimes I forget I’m even married. JK. Or am I? It was our friend’s birthday on Sunday but they had a party Saturday night so this is us making stupid faces at that.

How was your week? 

Currently: Halfway Through My Final Quarter of College

Obsessing over

Star Wars. After that trailer came out on Monday I flipped and have been more and more excited about it every day. I even dreamt that I watched Return of the Jedi last night and got mad because we have a plan to watch one every weekend leading up to the release of The Force Awakens. I grew up watching Star Wars, and as a film major and film nerd I have an obligation to love Star Wars, so it’s a good thing I do.

Working on

My screenplay. I have to write an entire movie by the end of the quarter. I started last week and am so far up to page 60 and that’s with me slacking most of the time. If I can kick my butt into gear I could have a first draft done by Halloween, which would give me a month to revise it.

Also working on having breathable air in my apartment. My downstairs neighbors chain smoke and smoke with water pipes (the appropriate term for a bong when used with tobacco) constantly and it all drifts into my apartment. Our landlords don’t seem to want to do anything even though it’s a violation of the no smoking clause of the lease, and the nuisance clause, and they are breaking the warranty of habitability, so I’ve resorted to using fans and leaving the windows open 24/7 in our almost winter-like weather. I’ve resigned myself to living in sweatpants and sweatshirts in my own home until I can move out. At least we’ll save on heating since we’ll never have it on.

Thinking about

All the crap I have to do to move and get a job. It’s overwhelming but it will be worth it.

Anticipating

Graduation. Moving out of this horrible town and horrible apartment. Star Wars. Halloween. Thanksgiving. Christmas.

Listening to

Demi Lovato’s new song Confident off her new album of the same name. I had it on repeat yesterday as I got ready for work and ended up marching fiercely into the coffee stand with my hair actually done and bright red lipstick.


Eating

Lots and lots of delicious plant based foods! Going vegan and actually sticking with it has been the best choice I’ve ever made for my body. Sometimes I don’t hit calories, which I know is bad, but I’m just so happy at the end of every day when I know I’ve eaten only plant based foods and am giving my body more nutrients now than I was before. I’m working on hitting calories. I just get full on less calories now since you have to eat so many fruits and veggies. I’ve been adding more bananas since those are more calorically dense, and of course if my beloved peanut butter gets in the mix I’m sure to hit calories.

Wishing

To get this beautiful apartment we’ve applied for that’s going to be brand new and is twice the size of the one we live in now for less than twice the price.

What’s currently going on in your life?

Thinking Out Loud #19: Tattoos

IMG_0192 IMG_0434 IMG_0856

 

I have three tattoos so far. They are pictured in the order that I got them. The first, “dream” is really tiny on my wrist, and I got it kind of as a test to see if I could handle getting tattoos. I believe that we only get one life and we need to allow ourselves to dream as well as be serious. We can’t let money rule our lives and forget about the things we really want. And I’ve always been a big Disney nerd. Disney reminds me to dream. And the two stars represent the second star to the right, Peter Pan, Tinker Bell, never grow up, etc.

The second tattoo, my Deathly Hallows Harry Potter tattoo was the first tattoo I’d ever wanted. I’m not gonna lie, I was in a ball cradling my wrist for about two hours after getting this one. I got “expecto patronum” underneath because it reminds me to find the light when my depression is especially bad.

The third one is Sailor Moon and underneath it says “bishoujo senshi” which translates to “beautiful warrior” or as the Chinese cook at my work translated “beautiful girl army.” Both are acceptable. I grew up with Sailor Moon. It was a big part of my development and figuring out who I am, as weird as that sounds. But I got that one more because I liked it than its deeper meaning.

Now I’m past the point of getting tattoos only because they have this deep emotional/spiritual connection. I’ve got a bunch planned that I want because I like them.

More and more people in my generation are getting tattoos. And today I overheard one of the managers at my job bitching about that fact. She had the usual complaints. They won’t look good when you get older. No one thinks about the future apparently. They’re gross. She said more people in my generation have tattoos but her generation is the one hiring us for higher up jobs and so they’re going to have to become more accepting of them. But she said that like we were asking her to eat her child.

Tattoos are not a big deal. They are also fairly cost effective. What else can you buy that will last you until you die? And nothing looks good as it ages. You don’t look as good at 80 as you did at 18. That’s life. And yes, you are going to have to hire us but having a tattoo does not hinder our ability to do a job. A tattoo of a flower not going to make someone suddenly unable to type or smile at a customer. Also, my generation largely does not care about tattoos in a negative way.

Tattoos are the least of our problems if we can even call them problems. Get one if you want, don’t get one if you don’t want one. I won’t judge you for not having a tattoo. I won’t judge you for your choice of tattoo(s). Please don’t judge me for mine.