Happy stress and anxiety? Is that possible? Iíd say so. There are people out there who work 12 hour days and love their job. There are parents (no really, there are) that spend all day with their kids and love it. So I think itís possible.
But in the end, it is still stress and anxiety. So with a week to go at the company Iíve been with for over 2 years, Iím starting to feel the anxiety and the stress. But Iím happy. Iím cracking jokes at work, smiling most of the day, brushing off minor setbacks. For example, this morning I was late, I spilled my starbucks as I got out of my car, I had to walk through sprinklers to get into the building, and the phones were busy when I got in. I laughed it off and kept going. Thatís very unlike the person I have been in the past.
The whole prospect of going to UC Davis to finish my degree, to give myself the opportunity to get a degree so I can start an actual career instead of working these entry-level jobs, to finally get a shot at being a Ďrealí college student again (and by Ďrealí college student I mean NOT working more than 20 hours a week and actually staying on campus all day as I go to classes that are actually challenging and exciting) has me very excited.
But Iíve been here before, obviously Iíve never been this close, but Iíve been here. I went to Arizona State out of high school and I left after a year for so many reasons. The last two years Iíve been working at Blue Shield and going to the four community colleges in this area. I almost went to UC San Diego, I almost went to University of Washington, I planned on moving to LA, I almost joined the Navy. Iíve had a different goal every few months it seems.
So when I finally got focused and did what was best and most intelligent, I decided to go to UC Davis. I have a great major (Managerial Economics), I got great financial aid (half scholarships and grants, half loans), I figured out a way to graduate in one year instead of two, I found a cheap, efficient, environmentally friendly way to commute (biking and riding the train), and I even managed to find a part time job on campus.
It all fell into place. Itís all there. Itís all done. In a little over a week Iíll start my summer session there.
So why the anxiety and stress? Because EVERYTHING is changing. Iíve been trying to get here for three yearsÖ and now that it is here I donít know what to do. Iíve had a certain comfort level being at Blue Shield the last few years and Iím leaving that. Iím challenging myself with the most difficult classes Iíve ever taken and Iím taking a heavier schedule than most students because Iím trying to graduate in one year. Iím switching from driving to biking and using public transit. Iím holding myself to a much stricter budget because Iím not going to be making the same amount of money. Itís all great, but god dammit it is scary.
I keep waiting for something to fall apart. But it canít. There will be minor setbacks, there always will be. But I got all the major stuff figured out.
I donít know many people whoíve taken as many risks and accepted as many failures and gone through as many changes as I have the last 3 years. This one is major and it is understandable that Iím a bit anxious for it. But shouldnít I be used to this by now?
Iím afraid though. Itís why I havenít bought any school apparel. For every college I almost went to I bought a shot glass, a hoodie, or something with the schoolís name and I always ended up not going. I took my bike in for a major tuneup because I fear that it will fall apart on the first day I ride to school. Iím buying my books as early as I can. Iíve budgeted myself out for a whole year. I havenít officially sent an email to all my friends in the company letting them know that my last day is a week from today (though my notice is in of course). Iím treading carefully. And everyone who is close to me feels the pressure and the anxiety too. They know Iím on the brink of where Iíve wanted to be for years. They know I need this to work and frankly, they do too.
Hereís to hoping. Hereís to futures and changes. Hereís to a new chapter that truly pays the dividends.
My problem with the story is that I feel like if I write a blog that isn't one of the chapters, I'm angering people. I have three chapters left and I will finish them soon enough, but there are too many other things on my mind that I have to get out before I can finish this damn story.
Fall Out Boy's new album is awesome. I've been back and forth with the band through their history. I never hated or loved them too much so I don't think I can ever be truly disappointed by them. Their lyrics have a way of speaking to everyone and you have to respect that. Let's just say that FOB is in my good graces and put out a top-10 album this year.
Speaking of which, I'm planning a huge EOTY list for this year. I went back and looked at my list from last year and added tons of categories. I'm going to do this thing in multiple segments and I'm totally stoked for it. Look for that to come in the next week.
So yes, I finally finished finals. I would definitely say I was spiraling and burning out in the last month. I'm still not close to feeling stable again, but I'm getting there. I still have to do a few more things to make sure I'll get my Social Science and General Education Associate's Degrees in May. But my online class schedule along with my 4 days a week of guaranteed working out with my weight training and cardio classes makes me happy. Not to mention that I don't have to worry about any of that until the end of January.
When this time of the year comes around I always get a bit nostalgic. I think everyone does. But I've been thinking about where I was a year ago. I hadn't moved out of my parent's house yet. I was recently dumped, I was lost and hating my direction. I was a mess. I was trying to find happiness in misery (FOB quote, ZOMG!).
Now I look at myself and I find that I'm trying to find misery in happiness. I've been so used to strife and pain and struggle that I don't know what to do with all this happiness in my life. I keep thinking that something bad is coming, that it is impossible to maintain this level of happiness... but nothing suggests that my happiness is going anywhere. It's crazy. I have an amazing girlfriend and a healthy relationship for the first time in... ever. My friends are all home and we are partying on saturday. I'm moving up at work. I have a good class schedule and I'm getting two degrees then transferring to UCLA or UCSD next fall. There's also one more prospect I'm excited about, but I'll get to that in a bit. Even Christmas, which is usually a terrible holiday for me, has become very enjoyable thanks to my beautiful girl. She took me to cut down a tree and decorated it with me and everything. My first Xmas on my own and she helped make it amazing.
Speaking of which, I need to do some shopping and creating. I hope to find some time in the next week to write some music, write some poetry and lyrics that aren't related to my story (though I still plan to write that as well!), continue to organize my life via my macbook and my iphone (yea, I got one... I know, I fail), and finish my EOTY list. I really want to blog more, but what is important right now are my family, friends, and girlfriend. Got plans to see a show, party, play football, have a relaxing and extended night with my girl, drive to San Jose and San Francisco to see family, exchange gifts and try to avoid annoying family bitterness and just have some cheer for once. If I've learned anything in my relationship, it's that I am a bit closed off and jaded. I'm trying to let go a bit more.
So back to organizing. I love syncing my calendar and contacts with my macbook and my iphone. I've been so crazy about it and still have some more tweeking to do. I like having lists and contacts with complete information.
And about that other prospect? Well I'm looking at joining the military. Before you jump on my ass about it, let me tell you that I'm looking at the officer program and won't join unless they pay for the next two years of college. The Navy is looking like the best bet right now. Basically, they have a program where they would pay me something like $3000 a month while I'm in school from Fall 2009-Spring 2011. I wouldn't have to work anything more than a part time job and I'd be able to focus on school and get my degree in Economics. Then when I went off to active duty for 4 years I'd be able to be a higher rank as an Officer, travel the world, work in Intelligence (which I love and would have a blast doing), save up money for my graduate degree, have a steady job and priceless experience, and no debt. By the time I'd be done with active duty I'd be 27, on my way to a graduate degree, have enough money to buy a house, have a guaranteed job with the Navy or enough experience on my resume to get a good job in what would be a hopefully recovering Economy, and be at a place in my life that would make me extremely proud and fulfilled.
Think of all of that what you will, but just the prospect of a free, unabaited education and a guaranteed job that I'm sure I'd love at the very least more than my current one makes my beam with excitement.
For the first time in years I feel like I have a track I am on. I feel like I have a purpose and I have my life figured out.
And if you don't like where I'm going, thats fine. You can just read my EOTY list and my story and my blogs about music. You don't have to like me as a person.
Anyway, good to be writing again. Much love to all of you!