Hold the Glimmer

Archive for the ‘School IS cool’ Category

Hey there little personal writing adventure I pay attention to every few months, I mean blog. How’s it hanging? Shocked you’re still around? Me too. Shocked anyone still clicks on you? Me too. Here’s to another resolution …

(p.s. Still thinking about you, Missy Elliott. Come back to my life.)

You guys.

Things are a-happening around here! By here, I mean my life and clearly not this blog. I’m working 60+ hours a week trying to keep it all together and pay a bill or two while simultaneously juggling an almost completely non-existent social life and oddly wonderful relationship. Aside from the lack of gym visits and thousands of miles I’ve put on Winnie in the last few months (driving over 100 miles a day is and isn’t the worst thing in the world. Special shout out to the world’s best playlist’er, DJ Amber), I’m pretty damn content with how life is playing out right now. I’m just happy as hell the last few months are over and I’m actually working as a reporter with a publication.

WHAT!

Girlfriend got an internship (PAID!) at a newspaper and let me tell you, it’s pretty fucking amazing.

The last semester at school physically sucked the life out of me. Previous semesters I had deemed difficult feel like a walk at the beach in comparison to those four months of mental carnage. When I walked into the newsroom on the first day, I truly believed everything would be different. I thought I had an incredible group of people who were interested in being the best editors in the world and that we were all going to work together in some form of sick harmony to produce a weekly paper- the best weekly paper the school had ever seen. Clearly, my life is supposed to play out like a Disney movie and you bet your ass there’s a soundtrack.

Listen, there was talent on this team. There is no doubt about the talent that dedicated hours to this paper, but with that talent came the most insane egos. From college kids. From people under (and sometimes over) thirty at a community fucking college. I was challenged, lied to, made fun of and ignored on a daily basis by people who two months prior were friends I was sharing drinks with and planning our “change” to the journalism world through our printed words. I was in a room for 25+ unpaid hours a week (in between the other FOUR JOBS I WAS HOLDING DOWN. Still have NO IDEA how I survived.) with people who questioned my dedication and in return wouldn’t even acknowledge me when I said “good morning.” I was the fool for hoping that in a college setting, people would act professional and leave high school attitudes behind. I was wrong. And I suffered each and every day.

As I left the newsroom on a day where editors wouldn’t respond to my questions even when we were looking directly at each other, my adviser flagged me down in the parking lot before the tears started rolling.

“Are you OK?” -adviser

“No. I’m not OK. They don’t even acknowledge me. Everyone is so rude and they all act like they have everything to give and nothing to learn. I thought we all had something to learn here? Why are they so fucking mean?” -me, clearly

“Tracy, it doesn’t matter.” -adviser

“I lay myself out there every fucking day and it just doesn’t matter how awful they treat me?” -me, again

“Nope. There will always be people who treat you this way regardless of who you are or what you do. It doesn’t matter. You’re not doing this for them. You’re doing this for you. That matters.” –adviser

Then the clouds parted and the sun started shining and a bird flew by singing the sweet sounds of spring. I kid, I kid.

I did have a profound moment though, and at the time thought “Ya. Fuck them. This is for me.”

And it was.

Three years ago, I would have never challenged myself by applying for the editor-in-chief position. Three years ago, I would have never dedicated countless hours or energy on anything that had to do with bettering myself, let alone pursuing my dreams. Three years ago, I would have been bored, at a desk, starting a blog about keeping hope when all you want to do is melt into a pool of whiskey, Xananx and complaints (they go hand-in-hand sometimes.)

Shortly after the pep talk, I heard news of an internship, applied and was hired during the interview. I showed up to meetings I didn’t have to attend, I suggested story ideas and made myself as readily available to do whatever they needed me to do. I’ve been published three times, took photos for two of the stories and can’t even count the number of online articles under my name. I’ve met with the publisher a few times and have some solid hope that I’ll be hired for a staff position.

Now that the semester is over and I’m no longer a part of the newsroom or editor-in-chief, I’ve let go of most of the bad feelings but I do have a regret or two hanging around.

I regret assuming people were on the same path as me. They didn’t assume the leadership position that I willingly took on, I did. I regret taking things personally. In one of my favorite books, “The Four Agreements,” a cardinal rule is to not take things personally. I have the exact mantra written on a Post-It note that’s stuck to my bathroom mirror from the night I read that page over four years ago (tangent- holler Post-It’s! Four years stuck to MY bathroom mirror? Way to fucking WORK.) I took things personally and I shouldn’t have. I’m only responsible for myself and my actions and can’t control others. I regret the time I lost worrying or complaining to my boyfriend or friends when I could have easily taken things as they were and not let everything consume me.

You know what I don’t regret? Working my ass off to get to here. I feel absolutely no regret about how hard I have worked and how hard I will continue to work to be better than I am at this moment. I want whatever it is that I’m feeling right now to last forever.

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I’ve been on this health-ish kick lately (to further specify, I’m just trying not to inhale every single thing thrown in front of my freaking face.  I’m human.  I don’t know how to eat 7 million vegetables a day or say ‘no’ to a manhattan, but I am trying to be a better me), and have been falling in love with the gym.

I use to take a boot camp class that was incredible and changed my entire body and mind, but with being in the newsroom a zillion hours a week and holding down four jobs and a NEW INTERNSHIP (!!!!!! Just let me finish a few sentences without parentheses’ and we can discuss) my available hours to gym it up are weird.  But I love it! I’m lifting weights, sweating all over disgusting gym machines, and talking to trainers about supplements and stacks and UGHH it feels so good.  I see regulars and we do the “whatsup” nod to each other and I’m sure soon enough that we will all be best friends, drinking protein shakes at the park and laughing about our former fat selves … or maybe not. Whatever. A girl can dream, right?

While I’m loving the gym and their insane playlists (really, out of this world.  I’ve almost asked who makes them and if I can jump in to the rotation), I am 100% not in to the gym bathrooms.  Let me rephrase- I am 100% not in to the full on bush every single time I walk in to the locker rooms.  It’s bush central.  Lot’s of bush. Bush walking around, bush towel drying, bush SITTING ON THE ACTUAL BENCHES WHILE IT FINDS ITS CHONIES.  How. Why. STOP.

I’m so pro woman.  The pro-est of woman and god we are beautiful creatures, but can I just not see your bush?  Can you hide that thing?  I don’t care what you do with it, but can I just not have it in my face every time I walk in to the room?  I’d say I see a minimum of eight new bushes a week.  I’m averaging four gym trips a week and each one of those trips includes a stop in the locker room to lock up my oh-so-valuable purse (no value, quite honestly.  Less value than an empty wallet. It’s. sad.) and with every turn of the corner in that freaking room is a goddamn bush.

Maybe I’m the prude?  Maybe it’s just weird for me to walk around naked in a room full of women.  I’m actually starting to like my body and it still freaks me out that women of ALL SIZES AND SHAPES are so ok with theirs.

And, I’m insanely jealous.  To be able to feel so comfortable in your own skin … a girl can really dream.  I envy each and every one of those women, of all ages, that rips off their gym clothes and full frontal walks to the sinks to wash their hands. Naked. Totally accepting of their body.  One day, Tracy, one day …

On a brighter note- internship! I got one! It’s paid! It pays shit! But it pays!

Starting this summer, I will be working for an actual publication! I think this means I am actually fulfilling my dreams of writing and I am scared as shit but it’s beyond exciting. My boyfriend can attest that I’m almost always exhausted and I usually fall asleep within seventeen seconds of seeing him (he’s the greatest I SWEAR), but I’m the happiest I’ve ever been working my ass off to catch this dream. It’s all happening you guys; it’s all happening.

Hi, kids.

I totally understand your complete lack of interest in the blog.  Really, I do.  With the zero posts that you’ve received and read in the last year, I fathom the disinterest.  You see, I became the editor-in-chief of my school newspaper and all writing has come to a halt while I deal with building a new, baller resume.  That resume may or may not include the four jobs I currently hold to keep living the dream and also full-time school schedule.  I’m pretty sure the last time I wrote a post, I was also diving in to a new, severely INCREDIBLE relationship.  I’m the happiest I’ve ever been and (gross yourself out) madly in love. In addition, I lost a bunch of weight, gained some back, lost some more and then ran a 5k in 30 minutes.  I’ve been battling body image issues like a mutha, but the gym has been newly found therapy and in the few spare hours I have per week, I hightail it over and get my ugly-sweat on. To say that I am busy is an understatement.

But, I care! I swear I do!  I need to keep this blog alive!  If I could turn back time (cue Cher voice), I would be documenting all of the absolutely ridiculous events in the last few months, but hey.  I’m here now, right?  Can I tell you about a cinema class I took over winter break?  It was horrible. and magical. and really miserable.  but also really wonderful.

Let’s start with the wonderful:

  1. I’m watching movies I’ve never seen and probably never would see because I have a fear of watching movies.

Tracy.

What.

I know.  You see, it’s not that I can’t sit through one (well, that’s a slight fabrication…) I get emotionally invested … easily … in everything.  I cry over commercials.  I cry when the right song comes on at the right moment.  I cried watching The Real World the other night.  The Real World.  It’s the THIRD EPISODE of THE SEASON and P.S. I’M TWENTYNINE.  When you’re this emotional about the MOST INSIGNIFICANT THINGS, it’s really difficult to commit yourself to a full 90+ minutes of a storyline, let alone an ending that may or may not play in to what your head has already concocted.  I’ve started slowly falling in love with actors and movies I never thought I would have any interest in.  Would you believe that this girl is actually enjoying- nay, seeking out silent films?  I know.  Breaking barriers here.

  1.  Adults in college level classes talk a lot and I do not want to be one of them.  I know that technically every student in the room is an “adult”, but there are two or three guys that are older than 35 that LOVE to hear their voices whether they’re being relevant or not.  I debated putting this in the “miserable” section, but it is truly a wonderful experience whenever they chime in and I don’t.  I’m constantly reminded to shut the fuck up because I’m borderline the fourth oldest person in the room and in competition with two other people for teacher’s pet.  The teacher’s pet part is due to the fact that the professor is also my journalism professor during the regular semester and he constantly reminds me and the class of how much time we spend together.  If one of the old guys isn’t interjecting with one of their irrelevant non-movie stories, it’s usually my professor asking “Hey Tracy” this or “so Tracy, what do you think about…”

and, well ya.  There’s the wonderful.  The list of miserable?

1.  You’re either absolutely insane or grinding your ass off if you sign up for an 8 a.m. class during Winter Break.  It’s the worst.  I’m barely alive before 11 a.m. and to have a professor that you like expecting you to be engaged in the class because everyone else except the four 35-year olds is asleep is the worst.  The. Worst.  And now I’m the teachers pet because no one responds to “Who is Judy Garland” and I don’t want my professor to feel that old.  See, I care.

2.  No coffee.  How the fuck I survived a morning class without coffee or food is a goddamn miracle and in my books an automatic A.  The classroom had a “problem” with insects and animals.  Yes, animals.  Food and drinks were strictly prohibited in the room and I sat through a MOVIE CLASS for three hours per day, four days a week without a perk.

Someway, somehow I passed the class and am currently missing it more than ever.  I’ve been busting my ass every week as the editor-in-chief for this newspaper and am flat out exhausted.  It’s tolling spending hours upon hours on a project that you 1. aren’t getting paid for and 2. have to be the biggest cheerleader for even when everyone has doubt in your abilities.  I’ve learned more about myself in the last three months than the last twenty years.  I’m constantly reminding myself that everything that happens in the newsroom is a learning opportunity and I will apply it in my professional life at one point or another.

 

And, I need to write more.  I need to remember that this is important to me.  Just holding the glimmer over here guys, holding the glimmer the best I can.

May 30, 2012

 

It’s been over a month since my dreaded…day…of…(it’s still really difficult to talk about. There is no closure. I still don’t understand it. I still can’t wrap my head around the events. I’m constantly questioning every single day of employment, what I could have potentially done wrong, how I got here…all that wonderfully depressing shit((yes, it’s worse than a breakup)) and I’m having a REALLY DIFFICULT TIME figuring out what to do now that I have all this free time to not meticulously plan someone’s day to day life. I’ve spent the last nine years building a career, saying a big “fuck you” to higher education, and building one of the best resumes I’ve seen thus far from a 27 year old, so having actual time to do whatever the fuck I want is….weird. Did I mention horribly depressing? I did. Let’s just set that tone real quickly; this post will be a lot easier to understand once you realize I’m a prime candidate to take over the Zoloft rock’s job. 

____________________________________________________________

 Well.

… that was depressing.

Friends! Hi! How’s it going! Anyone out there still holding the glimmer? I sure as hell am!  The excerpt above was the absolute last thing I wrote dedicated to this blog before my tailspin of depression which turned in to the absolute best six (err…nine…) months of my life.  You see, life has been intense.  I know you’ve all held your breath waiting for me to update you on everything Tracy, but for a while there, I didn’t think I would make it out alive.  Maybe that was just my liver talking.  Maybe my liver still doesn’t know what I’m doing.  Maybe I hate my liver and my liver hates me.  Maybe… We move along.

I never realized how difficult it was not having a job.  (Before you read the following few paragraphs, please feel free to let out an audible groan.  I realize how little sorrow you feel for me over the next few words you read, but I promise they have a point.  Or maybe the don’t.  I don’t give a fuck.)  While I complained on a daily basis about sitting behind a desk,  I didn’t understand how difficult it was to have a conversation about not sitting behind a desk.  That desk became my identity.  You see, so many interactions are formed around that job.  It’s shocking how much self worth and value is established around a job- any kind of job- but just a job.  I didn’t know how to not talk about a job or, not having one.  Try going on a first date three weeks after losing your job.  Let me know how awesome it feels when you’re trying to build yourself up as this incredibly worthy, date-able specimen (trust me- it ends in a paid cab ride because you had four too many Manhattans.  Trust. Me.) Try having an interest in going to dinner or lunch with your friends and talking about their lives and their jobs and how much they are succeeding in life as you dive deeper in to an abyss of self doubt.  It was daunting and depressing and instead of not talking about not having a job, I did everything that a person without a job did.  (Get ready for the groans, kids…) 

After a few REALLY LONG WEEKS of being more miserable than I can even begin to explain, I physically forced myself to snap out of it, and realized I was granted an early summer vacation. Time was of the essence and I was going to use that wisely (kinda wisely…) I made plans with practically every person I knew and every person I didn’t know.  I inadvertently started a mission to thoroughly enjoy my life and whatever came of it.  This included, but was not limited to: concerts, days on the beach, drinks, concerts, Disneyland, lunches, concerts, really awkward/amazing online dates, more drinks, dinners, fuck I spent a lot of money on concerts. While my parents weren’t too fond of the idea, I planned a solo road trip to Salt Lake City to see some of my best friends and my favorite band, Passion Pit.  Apparently, the lead singer was going through some SEVERE inner turmoil as well and canceled the show (which may or may have not affected my already wavering depression issues), but I still packed up Winnie Cooper (that’s my ride, for any of the three readers who don’t know me…), and hit the open road.  My trip was beyond enlightening.  The Utah kids were Coachella friends that became family and I had a long week of whiskey and even more soul searching.  I’m not exactly sure when it hit; between three caramel macchiatos, an entire jumbo pack of fire breathing beef jerky and an exhausting 13 hour drive home, I was determined to completely change my life. And, I did.

I came back to LA knowing fully well that summer was on its tail end and I would be diving off the deep end into my first semester of school in over nine years.  I was an absolute nervous wreck at the idea of even walking in to a class room (Where would I sit?  Would I be the oldest in the classroom? What if I saw people I knew? What if my clumsy ass fell while walking in to the classroom and everyone laughed at me and I would forever be known as that old girl who fell in slow motion on the first day of classes? What would I wear?), let alone the fact that I had to crash every single class…. (BIG shout out to Los Angeles Community College District registration dept.  Really appreciate that registration date where all classes were filled four weeks prior to my registration date. That was super tight of you. Even more props for the financial aid I couldn’t get because of my 2011 income. GREAT, supportive start to my new scholastic me, really.)

Oddly enough, all of the fear and anxiety was completely unwarranted.  My first day of school was…absolutely incredible. I felt completely in my element and inspired to put every effort in to achieving the one regret I’ve held on to thus far in life- not getting my degree.  

Super fast forward to today, because Lord knows I’ve been doing a phenomenal job with staying accountable with my blog dreams: I managed a 3.0 in my first semester of school, stayed out of as much trouble as possible over winter break (not really, but that’s a whole different blog post..), lost about 30lbs, and found myself a suuuuper sweet boyfriend.  

WHAAAATTTTT?!?!

And that’s where I’m ending this post. A few doubts, a few questions, and a whole lotta suspense.

Love you guys xoxo 


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