As promised in my last post, “Updating Life,” this is the story of our two Meezers, Jitterbug and Lindyhop, but mostly about Jitterbug.
I found Jitters first. I’d been checking every place I could think of for potential fur-babies.
Pretty quickly I found PetFinder. Great website because it partners with a lot of shelters and you can search by animal, breed, age, gender, and distance. Jitters was listed as Sophie and was quite a ways away (a good two hour drive at least), but she was absolutely gorgeous so I had to give her shelter a call.
The lady that ran the shelter was honest with me.
She felt that Jitters would never be a social cat. Jitters wouldn’t interact with her at all and would hiss when she would try to pet her. She’d never bitten the lady, but then, the lady hadn’t really given her the opportunity. We could have her for free, but it was with the understanding that we would never have a nice friendly cat that would cuddle and purr. Her history was largely unknown, except that she’d been found with her sister, Suki, and brought to the shelter.
Well, I wasn’t daunted by that, and neither was my roommate. My family had once said I could tame bobcats, and I doubted I’d lost that touch. And besides, free Siamese cat. Look at her, she’s gorgeous! So we made the drive.
I would be the first to admit that I’m not the best at finishing things. It’s been approximately 3 months since my last post and I have no less than 8 drafts of posts that are all but finished, barely started, just an idea, or multiple versions of the same thing that I can’t figure out which to use. Those same 8 drafts have been there for the past 3 months, completely untouched. I haven’t even opened WordPress in that time.
Was the break intentional? Initially, but it wasn’t meant to be prolonged.
I had had grand plans of taking the entire month of November (NaNoWriMo) and all my free time therein to finish (or come close to finishing) Freak Accidents (because I actually do have an end in mind), but something happened somewhere in the middle of November that made me too excited to accomplish those grand plans.
My life updated. A friend needed a roommate and I realized that it was financially feasible for me to move out. We decided we’d move at the end of December.
A friend asked me if I ever plan on writing anything deeper than what I usually write. Aside from the fact that I prefer to make people laugh, and that I strongly believe that continuously pointing out the problems in the world without endeavoring to offer a solution (which I don’t exactly have) only adds to those problems, I usually just write about whatever’s going on in my life and the thoughts that come of that. For example, “Limited Social Capacity” was motivated by the fact that I was going to take a walk with a friend and then she invited one of her friends to join us without giving me advance warning (the time appointed doesn’t count as advance warning), much to my chagrin.
Unfortunately, recent events have been a little bit too deep to share in a general blog like this one. Hence the lack of posts for several weeks—or however long it’s been. I had things to say, but I just didn’t want to explain them as fully as the context demanded. However, there is one deep thing that I am willing to share.
Have you ever had one of those problems that never happens when someone who could potentially fix the problem is actually looking? That’s an IT problem. It could also be a mechanical problem. Because these problems are most often related to computers or to cars. The best you can do is describe the problem as clearly as possible and keep checking back with the person who understands these kinds of problems until it happens again in front of them.
I have one of those problems. Now, strictly speaking, it’s not a problem; at least, not one that can be fixed. According to my cardiologist, I have mitral valve prolapse. I don’t really understand it, but I’m assured it’s not dangerous or anything I need to worry about. I just need to be aware of it, have tests every few years, and generally not worry. But I can’t actually be diagnosed unless it shows up on an echocardiogram. I’ve had several echoes—I won’t go into how weird it is to have an echo as a 15-year-old girl with your dad and a male doctor in the room—and each time my heart has behaved perfectly normally. But every once in a while, never during a test, I get funny palpitations that are a little bit unnerving. Maybe more than a little bit.
When the experts are looking, the problem never manifests itself.
Isn’t it so comforting knowing that we have a God who doesn’t have to be looking at just the right time in order to know that you have a problem? Who put you together just the way you are according to His design? There are many passages in the Bible that I repeatedly come back to, and Psalm 139 is one of them.
Last year, I noticed that the closer graduation became, the more done I got with doing school things. There was a time of my life when I would have been perfectly comfortable continuing with school for the rest of my life, so long as I had a good long break every once in a while. But that time has come and gone like a freight train (note that the average freight train is not exactly fast). So approximately six months before I graduated with my masters degree, something in my psyche went, “Why are we still doing this to ourselves? It’s time to be done! Staaaaaaahhhhhhp!” (My mental processes often have different personalities, which is why I sometimes think to myself in plural.)
Now that I’m officially done with school, and not just mentally done (nevermind that I’m thinking about taking a class next semester just because I can), my mind has latched on to another thing to be done with.
So a friend of mine, The Risabella Rambler, recently posted this post, “Adulthood Is Stupid,” which details all the reasons why children really shouldn’t want to grow up. And everything she says is all very true. Everything that we wanted to have as children that only adults get isn’t as free, or as fun, as we wanted it to be.
However, my life isn’t as bad as it should be, per my friend. I like my job and my co-workers, my rent is allowing me to pay for stuff, and my life is actually coming together quite nicely. I may not have an active social life, but I go out when I want to go out and stay in when I want to stay in. Sure, I’d like to be able to travel, but I have friends who wait and save up for travel opportunities, and I can work with that. And while the world is going to pots around our ears, it’s kind of been doing that since day 1, so I’m not particularly worried about anything, unless it suddenly stops going to pots. Which I think would be more worrying than everything else. Everything is pretty ok for me.
So I graduated. And I got a full-time job. So I have officially started my adult life. Needless to say, I have mixed feelings.
Why should I have mixed feelings? I finished my last semester of grad. school with two A’s, got a job right after graduation, when I know many people don’t get jobs for years after their graduation. And it’s in my field no less. My job is relaxed (for the moment; I have been assured that it will get stressful as time moves on), I work with great people, and I have a great environment. Literally there is nothing to complain about. Aside from boredom, but that is easily alleviated. I have so much I am thankful for, and God has blessed me so much.
You know that thing where you have such good intentions for life and your goals are so clear and so achievable… and then two weeks later you’ve watched 9 consecutive seasons of some random TV show and haven’t slept in any kind of regular pattern?
Yeah. That happened. Except it happened all summer, and then school started up again and I began my second to last semester of grad. school, which came as close to torture as physically possible, and Christmas break happened and I got nothing accomplished. Then I started my final semester and I’m teaching my own classes and I’m having what is probably going to be the easiest semester ever.
But most of that is just a big excuse for not blogging. What really happened is I got stuck on an idea (for Freak Accidents) and I couldn’t figure out how to continue in a way that I liked. So I didn’t post at all. Or I kept starting a post and then would never finish it. But my impending graduation and future life in creative writing encourages me to revive my blog and write, write, write!
On multiple occasions, I have had the privilege of taking classes with one particular teacher at — University. Throughout the classes that I have had with her (so far, Shakespeare’s early plays, late British literature, classical and medieval literature, and the Tudor renaissance), it has seemed to me that she often stressed this literary theme of knowing yourself. “Know thyself!” she would proclaim (loudly, with some pounding on the desk for emphasis).
Lately, as I progress through my graduate school days, I am discovering more and more how important it is to know yourself. Each day seems to be more and more of a journey of self-discovery. And, through self-discovery, growth. After all, how can you truly grow if you don’t know the areas in which you need growth? How can you repair a broken wall without first knowing what kind of materials the wall is made of?
Where did this particular reflection come from? A certain realization of my own character. I consider myself to be rather spontaneous. I don’t like fixed plans, and I like the changeability and flexibility that my life has right now. In fact, it’s quite safe to say that I dread routine. Schedules and lists are repulsive. And nothing irks me more than mandatory curfews and bedtimes. *Shudder*
But, at the same time, I would not be able to handle a life without some elements of a schedule, whether it be a class schedule or a work schedule. But I also like the flexibility of being able to change things at the drop of a hat (not that my current schedule affords me that kind of flexibility – but I can dream).
So, what have I learned from this bit of self-discovery? Not sure yet. I’ll let you know when it hits me.
It is one of my mottos (or it aught to be, or very soon will be) that you can learn anything from anything. And Pinterest has often proven itself to be not only a very great time waster, but also a wonderful opportunity to learn. I will not bore you with the details, other than the fact that I was browsing on Pinterest when I realized something. Personal space is not strictly limited to physical space. Yes, you invade another’s “personal space” when you stand too closely to them, or make them physically uncomfortable somehow. But have you ever realized that personal space can also be visual, auditory, and olfactory?
You intrude on someone’s visual space when forcing another to see something he does not want to see. You intrude on someone’s auditory space by either being too loud or saying something they don’t want to hear. You intrude on someone’s olfactory space by reeking of something unpleasant or putting on too much of a good thing (for example, most perfumes and colognes require 1-2 sprays, not 15-20).
Question 1: do you take into consideration other people’s personal space, be it physical, visual, olfactory, or auditory?
Question 2: have you measured your own “personal bubble” and made sure that its limits are reasonable?
We often unintentionally irritate others by not considering others’ comfort, but we can also bother others by allowing too much to bother us.