Back At It

Hello! My god, I haven’t posted on this blog in forever. I made my new blog so that I could separate my posts about motherhood from personal posts, but I guess I’ve learned that once you have a child, there is no separating your parenthood from your personal life. In a way it’s wonderful to be tied to someone like that (I mean, she’s literally 50% me), but on the other hand it’s a little exhausting.

I guess this post will be more of a rant if anything.

So this semester is my first time taking a full course load (12 credits) in a year. I honestly thought I could handle it, but I’m starting to find that I really, really can’t.

Here are the reasons why I’m freaking the fuck out:

1) More credits

Last semester I only took 6 credits online. The spring before that I took 12 in class. But there’s a difference.

The 6 I took last semester were psychology classes, and I already have a good foundation of psychology behind me. I already knew, for the most part, what was going on, or I would just have to build on my existing knowledge. Now, I’m planning on switching majors to business (marketing to be exact), and I have absolutely no experience with college level business courses. So not only are there more, but they’re all brand new, and require a COMPLETELY different frame of thinking than my psychology classes did.

2) Online

The 2 classes I took online last semester were nothing. I already had a lot of previous knowledge and they were pretty simple for the most part. Plus, they were both “pace yourself” classes with no fixed schedules.

The classes I’m taking this semester are COMPLETELY different. They have weekly schedules and deadlines to meet, and there are a lot more assignments than my previous classes had. I’m finding it exceedingly difficult to be able to keep up with the course work.

I feel like if I had taken these classes in-class rather than online I would be under a lot less stress, because in class I would have people to talk to and a lecture to listen to, but in my house, not only do I have to combat the feeling of general laziness, but I have my daughter to take care of.

3) Ember

My baby is not even 3 months old yet. She requires A LOT of care. Her day works like this: nap for 1 to 2 hours, wake up, eat, poop, play, sleep again. Repeat. High school had gotten me adjusted to this “do all of your homework in one sitting” mindset, and that worked for me for 5 years. Now all of a sudden it’s “constantly start and stop, and sometimes stop in the middle of a thought because the baby is crying”. Ember has finally gotten into the habit of sleeping 5-6 hours in a row at night, every night like clockwork starting at midnight. For the first week I thought “Maybe if I try to get it all done during that time span I’ll be good”. But no, no I won’t. Turns out staying up all night when you have a baby will kill you during the day.

When Ember is awake, she wants to be entertained. She will actually cry of boredom. I have to play with her. If I sit her down in front of the TV, she’ll usually stop fussing and watch, but the thing is that I don’t want to do that to my baby. I don’t want her to be a brain-dead TV head before she’s even 1 year old. I’ve considered dropping her off at my relative’s house some days of the week so I can go to a library or something a study in peace, but the weather is so bad that every time she goes out she ends up getting sick and I can’t let that happen.

So pretty much, I am a nervous wreck.

My anxiety had gotten better over the past month, but recently it’s almost been right back where it used to be.

Thankfully I don’t have suicidal thoughts like I used to. It was a really rough 2 months after Ember was born, but thankfully I’ve been able to pull myself out of that. This anxiety is more like an, “I am so stressed and I have so much to do that I literally can’t function thinking about all the stuff I have to do”.

People don’t understand how dangerous the “depression/anxiety” pair works when it comes to academics.

The depression, by itself, leaves me hollow and unfeeling. It leaves me paralyzed in bed unable to move, sometimes so numb that I let my daughter cry for about 10 minutes before I have the strength to get up and give her whatever she wants.

The anxiety, by itself, makes my body start to overheat, and I start having panic attacks over the smallest things. Little arguments can make me cry and hyperventilate. Thinking about something stressful can make me heat up and start nervously scratching myself until I bleed.

The depression and anxiety together puts me in bed, with no energy, scratching myself until my arms bleed while my head hurts trying to strategize a way to get all my work done in time. Once I have my mental homework schedule planned out, I remain in bed, still without energy, and panic, constantly revising my schedule because I lack the mental capacity to execute it with efficiency. When I finally get the energy to get my textbook out, the words are blurry and my mind is racing with panic and I start to cry because I am so worried about failing that the thought of failing is what is actually leading to my failure.

You can read that paragraph and tell me I’m insane, and others will probably agree with you, but I swear to god that describes me on a good week.

I feel in my heart that I won’t go spiraling into a pit of suicidal depression again, but I’m feeling such a horrible stress I’ve never felt before, and I honestly don’t know where it will lead me.

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2k13: Love, Stress, And Confidence

Well, well, well. Here we are homies.

For starters, I want to try to put a major event from every month down. Here we go:

  • JANUARY: Wow I can’t even remember much. High school and whatnot. It all seems like a distant dream.
  • FEBRUARY: My best friend committed suicide. The worst month of my life followed after that.
  • MARCH: My 2 year anniversary with my boyfriend.
  • APRIL: Found out I got into Virginia Tech!
  • MAY: Honestly there was a lot of hanging out with friends, goofing off and whatnot. MAJOR senioritis kicked in. Celebrating an end and anticipating a beginning and whatnot.
  • JUNE: A LOT HAPPENED IN JUNE WOW. Fucking prom. I graduated from high school. I lost my virginity. I had a swaggy grad party. I was out with my friends pretty much every day.
  • JULY: This was all my birthday. Like birthday planning, birthday rehearsals, etc etc. My 18th birthday party was a monster ball damn it was a mix of tradition and clubbing I don’t even know.
  • AUGUST: August was sad as fuck. Packing, so many goodbyes, headed off for college. I bought a dildo at some point, that was exciting I suppose.
  • SEPTEMBER: September was horrible tbh. I was homesick and depressed every day. September holds the birthday of my friend that passed away. I cried a lot. I made a lot of new friends, but it just didn’t feel right.
  • OCTOBER: I went to my first college party and it was intense and I did not like it I found out I’m not an alcohol person. I was way more adjusted in October, but still not quite there.
  • NOVEMBER: Midterms gross. It took 3 months but by November I was pretty well adjusted in college. Friends, classes, all that jazz.
  • DECEMBER: Started from the bottom now we here. The holidays are always full of mixed emotions for me, maybe I’ll write about it in another post. Ugh don’t even talk to me about finals I don’t wanna. BUT my final grades for first semester were A, A, C-, A, D, B and I’m cool with that like I can live with those grades damn college is hard.

Now here we are! Happy second day of Kwanza!

I want to say that last year, for the first time, I didn’t make a New Year’s resolution. My entire life, I have never failed to make one. My entire life, I have never failed to not complete a single thing on the list. But this year was different. This year was great.

Though I’m far from them, I’ve never felt closer to my friends from high school, and making so many new friends in college has given me greater self-confidence. Though my boyfriend and I are in a long-distance relationship, we’re still happy and more in love than ever. Since my parents know they don’t see me often, they stopped being so irritable when I’m home. My grades aren’t horrible

What I’m trying to say, is that I’m happy. All things considered, this year was good. I’m lucky in friendship, in health, in love, in family.

The only thing that could have made my year better is if B was still with me. No matter how optimistic I can try to be, I’ll always feel sad celebrating a new year when I know he has none left.

But I digress…

For some reason that I cannot explain, I’ve gained an INCREDIBLE amount of self-confidence this year. Like all those times I wish I could’ve stood up for myself, all those years I’ve wished I could talk to people and be more sociable, all those days I wanted to be someone better. It’s like all those times just started. I feel like a lot of it had to do with having a grand 18th birthday and going to college. My birthday party was extremely gorgeous and exciting. I was the princess for a day, and the whole day it felt like I was walking on air. I felt tall and pretty and high. Then there was going to college. When I left, I was all by myself. Completely alone with no friends to lean on. It made me bold. It made me break out of my shell, little by little. And it worked.

Every year for my birthday or for Christmas I ask the heavens to grant me one wish: Make me beautiful.

I have eczema. All my life I’ve wanted to be pretty. I figured that if I was beautiful, I’d have the confidence to do anything I set my heart on. And this year, I feel like all that hoping and all that wishing was granted, but not in the way I expected.

I did not become beautiful, but rather I was granted the gift to see myself the way I truly am. My entire life I saw myself as ugly, but the tables have been turned and my vision has brightened and for the first time I can see myself for the beautiful and dazzling individual that I am. And that is the greatest gift I could have ever asked for.

Well that was my year. I hope you all had a happy holiday season and a happy New Year!

Getting Older Growing Colder

Winter certainly greeted me with a bang this morning.

I was getting ready to go to the grocery store. I looked out the window and saw patches of snow on the grass, but nothing more. I was pretty upset ’cause I was expecting a blizzard and a little more winter action but you know, you take what you can get.

I took one step outside and then WHOOPS, I slipped and fell on my bum. It scared the shit out of me, it was so unexpected. I looked around and saw there was ice everywhere and I was like, well, here’s the winter action I was looking for. It was a terrifying 10 minute march to the busstop as I obsessively watched my every step.

Winter. My favorite season. Also the literary symbol of death, or an end.

To be more exact, the end of my first semester in college.

It feels so strange! It seems like just yesterday I was filling out college apps hoping University-sempai would notice me.

It seems like yesterday I was a 5 year old letting go of my mom’s hand and walking onto the school bus for the very first time. It was raining hard that day. I sat alone on the bus and started sobbing because I was scared. I remember walking into the school and thinking it was a palace. It was gigantic to my small 5 year old self.

I remember growing older. I remember being an 8th grader, out of elementary for 2 years. I remember going back and thinking it was absolutely tiny, wondering how I could have ever thought it was a palace.

I remember growing older still. I remember just this past summer, in June near the end of the school year, going back to that elementary school again for the first time in another 4 years and thinking it had shrunk yet again.

But of course, it’s not shrinking. I’m getting taller. And older. Much, much older. On my last visit I found out that I have only one teacher left that taught me that is still there. My first grade teacher. That’s incredible. Of all my teachers, the one I had 12 years ago is the only one still there. Unfortunately she wasn’t there the day I visited, but I saw her picture in the year book and for some reason I was stunned.

She was tiny. She was a little old lady with a sunken face and a full head of white hair. I don’t know why, but I walked in expecting to see the same bright young (all things considered) brunette that taught me 12 years ago.

It was a shock. I’m getting old. I’m getting so, so old. I’m 18. There is no one holding my hand anymore.

Then I thought again.

Yes, there is someone holding my hand. My boyfriend. I am 18. For all I know, in 5 years I could be married with a child, and that is bone-chilling and frightening.

A few days ago, my best friend lost her virginity. A part of me was screaming “You’re just a child! You’re too young!” But then I remembered, no, she’s not. She’s 18. I was 17 when I lost my virginity.

We’re not babies anymore. We’re old.

This winter, I complete my first semester in college. It feels like the first day of school was just yesterday, I can’t even process that this season is through. Time is going by so quickly.

I’m going to say that this winter is death. The death of my childhood. Of course childhood is subjective and I’m only as old as I feel, and the truth of the matter is that I’m still an 18 year old at the very beginning of my life, but sitting here thinking about my younger days makes me feel like a wistful old woman.

I AM A STRONG INDEPENDENT [FILIPINO] WOMAN

AND I DON’T NEED NO MAN.

Well maybe.

I don’t know.

Anyways.

So, I’m going to say that I get irritated easily. I’m very good at arguing, provided that I’m passionate about what I’m arguing about. Like if you’re anti-LGBT anti-abortion don’t even talk to me.

I used to think that those kinds of things — gay rights, feminist issues, anything along those lines — were the only topics that really heated me up. I thought I was a civil person for the most part but that I just get over-passionate about these things. But after today, I realized that I’m actually just a hot-head.

So in my biology lab class, we’ve had a project that we’ve been working on for 3 weeks. The project was to solve a supposed murder case. We either had to prove that someone did it, or prove that no one did it. My group concluded that no one did it.

We had to sit there and listen to everyone give their conclusion and evidence. And as I sat there for an hour and forty-five minutes, I realized that I get agitated very, very easily.

Out of 6 groups, only 2 of them (including mine) concluded that there was no murderer. But as I sat there listening to the rest of the groups argue their cases, I grew very irritated. Hearing them explain their (flawed) reasoning behind how these little things meant someone was a murderer, I was growing more and more angered at their irrationality.

“The death certificate claims that she died at 8AM, but the bug analysis says that she died at 10AM, so we decided that the mortician was lying and the entire death certificate can’t be used as viable evidence.”

In my head I was screaming DUMBASSES. THE BUG ANALYSIS IS INCONCLUSIVE. AT THE STAGE OF THEIR DEVELOPMENT, THE RANGE FOR ERROR IN ACTUAL TIME OF DEATH CAN BE ANYWHERE FROM 30-50 HOURS OFF. IF YOU READ THE REST OF THE CERTIFICATE YOU’LL FIND OUT THE REAL REASON SHE DIED WAS BECAUSE SHE HAS 3 HORRIBLE DISEASES ASSHOLES NO ONE MURDERED HER YOU STUPID SHITS.

And I was getting so steamed. Like, I was getting outraged.

And for literally nothing!

And now that I’ve had time to think about it, I guess I can kind of see why.

When I’m angry about an anti-LGBT or anti-abortion argument, it’s because I find their reasons ridiculous. God most likely doesn’t give a shit if homosexuals get married, and aborting a baby isn’t the same as killing a human being because them lil bitches up in that uterus ain’t got no EEG, which are brain signals that mark life.

When I was angry today, it was also because I thought these people’s conclusions were outrageous. You can’t take out a piece of evidence just like that dumbass. No, just because a piece of his hair was found on her clothing doesn’t make him the murderer. Sure there were tire tracks, but maybe he was just driving past the neighborhood? #jfc

I am a strongly opinionated person. I’m a fighter. I’ve been picked on my entire life, I fight, I think a part of me even likes fighting. I don’t know. All I know is that I seriously need to calm the fuck down sometimes.

Check Your Education

My dad is going back to college!

Not full time, but he’s going to take enough credits to finally get his degree in electrical engineering.

Let me tell you a story:

My dad went to college in the Philippines. He got his degree in electrical engineering. But then he got my mom pregnant. They moved to America to give their children a chance for a better future. Here, they don’t accept his degree. He couldn’t get a job as an engineer. He was treated as if he didn’t have anything higher than a high school education. He had to be a bag boy. A cashier. All these menial jobs he was far over-qualified for. Finally he got a job as an electrician (a step in the right direction). He is still working this job, 15 years later. A job he is, again, far over-qualified for. My dad had to overcome an unexpected pregnancy, a move to a new country, and raising 2 kids. Slowly, he’s been trying to get the qualifications to be an engineer. Very, very, very slowly. So slowly that he gives up from time to time because he simply doesn’t have the time or the energy to do it because of his strenuous and labor-intensive job. This year, he passed some kind of engineer test or something (I DON’T KNOW WHAT IT’S CALLED OKAY BUT IT WAS A BIG DEAL). Everyone was happy, but he didn’t really know what to do. Recently, my mom called the university near our house and asked about how my dad could approach enrolling as a part-time student to get enough credits to finish his education to be an electrical engineer, and he’s now in the enrollment process.

I’m so happy. I’m so proud. Through all the hard work and shit he’s been through, he did not give up, even when it seemed like he did. He’s going to accomplish his dream and finish his education and get the job that he should’ve had 18 years ago.

It’s my belief that it’s never too late to get an education.

Now, I’m going to start to rant.

A while ago, I was talking to my friend about how there are so many old people on campus. And I say “old” as in adults with grey hair. There’s one old guy in my biology class, and another in my philosophy class. I was talking to him about how I thought it was great that they’re finishing their education.

His dad heard what I was saying, and they both had the same reaction. It was something along these lines:

“Wow, why? Don’t they have families or jobs? Education is great but there comes a point where you shouldn’t need to go back to school because you have enough experience to get the job that you want. They’re wasting their time and money.”

This just insulted and angered and disgusted me to my core, and let me tell you why.

First of all, his dad ACTUALLY IS AN ENGINEER. By “experience”, I assume he was talking about his own life. As in, he got his education IN AMERICA where jobs and companies actually recognize him as qualified, and he worked his way up to the position he’s currently in. Obviously, he doesn’t understand how different it is for people that weren’t born and raised in this god forsaken country.

Second, yeah, my dad does have a job and a family actually. That’s why he hasn’t been able to get his SECOND education in the first place. And he’s trying to get this education so he can get a BETTER job to support that beautiful family of his.

Third, that’s just such a judgmental piece of shit thing to say. “Wasting time and money.” Fuck that. I don’t even have words to describe how awful and downright disrespectful of a thing that is to say.

Sure I know that my friend and his dad only say those things because it’s what they’ve grown to know. But my anger stems from the fact that they didn’t even try to see things from other people’s points of view.

The title of this post is a play on the phrase “Check your privilege”.

In a more socially-equivalent world, my dad would’ve come here and gotten a job as an engineer. He would be making approximately $40,000 more than he’s making right now. He wouldn’t have had to go through this long and painful process of getting his degrees again. He wouldn’t have to go through the scrutiny of people that didn’t have to go through all this because they are privileged and didn’t come from an under-educated and poverty-stricken country.

Whenever I hear that “immigrants are stealing jobs from hard-working Americans” I want to throw up. Then I think about how white men came from the east and ruined the lives of Native Americans and I get really racist all of a sudden. That’s just the phrase this situation always brings to mind.

My dad is the most respectable and under-appreciated man I know, and I’m so unbelievably proud of him and anyone that thinks otherwise can **** a **** because they’re a ************* ***** ** ****.

Time Management for A Successful Student

When I got to college, they gave us a sheet telling us how we can party and succeed academically based off a time management formula.

There are 168 hours in a week.
Let’s say, optimistically, everyone gets 8 hours of sleep every night. That leaves you with 112 hours.
For the best success, you should study 3 hours for every credit you’re taking. Let’s say you’re taking 15 credits, so you should spend 45 hours a week outside of class doing school work. Plus the time you’re actually in class, that leaves you with 52 hours.
Then let’s say you spend an hour a day in the bathroom. 45 hours left.
Maybe you take 2 hours to eat every day. 31 hours left.
That’s 31 hours of free time you can use to join clubs, party, work out, go to games, anything while still being a healthy and responsible student.

Luckily I am taking 15 credits, so I didn’t have to alter their formula.

31 hours. Now let’s see what I can do with that.

I cry, and feel horribly depressed every single day. Not a day has gone by since I’ve gotten here that I haven’t laid in my bed paralyzed thinking about killing myself. I feel weak and pitiful with splitting migraines, and I can’t think of anything besides slicing my own neck. Let’s say I do this for an average of 2 hours a day. 17 hours left.

I spend an hour talking to my family every day so that my parents don’t have heart attacks worrying that I’ve gotten myself hurt somehow by walking around at night or getting hit by a car. 10 hours left.

On Mondays it takes me 1 hour total to walk to and from my classes. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, 50 minutes. On Wednesdays, 30 minutes. 7 hours and 40 minutes left.

This has always been how I am, but I take about half an hour getting ready in the morning. 4 hours and 10 minutes left.

Because of my eczema, I have to spend 20 minutes every day taking care of my skin (putting lotions, medicines etc.) 1 hour and 50 minutes.

Wow look at that. A whole hour and 50 minutes of free time all to myself every week, lucky me. I can watch half of Titanic in that time, what fun.

No, college has not been easy for me.

To keep myself from killing myself, I’ve been trying to absorb myself in exercise. That’s 1 hour everyday, so now I’m left with -6 hours and 50 minutes. Kendo is 2 hours 3 times a week, so make that -9 hours and 50 minutes.

Balancing school work, trying to keep my family from dying of broken hearts, trying to keep myself from dying in general. This is hard work.

I’ll talk about why I’m struggling to stay alive in another post at some point maybe. These are supposed to be the best 4 years of my life. Maybe I’m not doing this right.

1 + 1

“Depression is when you don’t really care about anything. Anxiety is when you care too much about everything and having both is just like… Having both is staying in bed because you don’t want to go to school and then panicking because you don’t want to fail. Having both is wanting to go see your friends so you don’t lose them all, then staying home in bed because you don’t want to make the effort. Having both is insanely hard and sucks to deal with.” Source

 

Well, I have both.

Last night I went to sleep feeling like shit. This morning, I woke up feeling like shit.

Last night I felt like shit because I was insanely homesick. My family came for the day to visit, and I felt sick afterwards. I woke up in the morning feeling literally sick. I had the worst headache. It was like an emotion-induced hangover. I didn’t want to get out of bed. I didn’t want to go to breakfast with friends. I didn’t want to go to class. I was coughing and sneezing and I had a stomachache. It was horrible.

But I wanted to get up. I wanted to see my friends. And I wanted to go to class. And I did all of those, but it didn’t feel like I did. There was a buzzing in my head the entire time, and it was like I was still sleeping but I wasn’t. I was half-convinced I was dreaming for a portion of the day, but I wasn’t. It was like I was walking in a dream. It was like I was in a coma. I was unresponsive, and when I did talk it only made my head hurt. Going to class wasn’t okay either. I felt like I couldn’t see a thing, and whenever I wanted to answer I question there was this horrible pain in the back of my head. It felt like I knew the answer but there was a physical wall blocking it from coming to the front of my mind.

After all my daily obligations were through, I went back to my room and climbed in bed. I didn’t do homework, I didn’t sleep. I didn’t eat or draw, and I’m not entirely sure if I was thinking coherent thoughts. That state lasted roughly 4 hours. When I was “conscious”, I noticed my roommate was sitting on her desk watching Supernatural on her laptop. I didn’t even notice her come in.

Now it’s 10:30pm and I haven’t done a thing. It feels like I haven’t done a thing all day. And I feel horrible about it. When I read the quote I mentioned at the beginning of the post, I was surprised how accurate it was. I want to do something but I can’t, and I don’t even know why. It feels like there’s something compressing my brain, and there’s this horrible pounding. I want to read and I want to write and I want to draw and call someone and text people and message my friends and eat for God’s sake, but I can’t.

Before coming to college my mom had sent me all these articles with advice for college freshmen. One article said that it’s normal for college freshmen’s grades to drop because of temporary depression and homesickness. They’re still panicking about being thrown in a new environment, even if they don’t know it yet.

Depression + anxiety = coma

Together they cause a sickness that leaves the host physically able yet mentally vacant.

I’m going to do my homework. I’m going to sleep as soon as the words stop making sense and the world starts falling apart the way it always does.