When My Only Work Experience Is Babysitting

Some people know who they are when they are younger. For some, it takes many years. I think that for myself, I fall somewhere in the middle. I think I know who am, but I could be wrong. I’m not quite ready to rule out that possibility. So, in my struggle to keep afloat in life, I have made certain choices that do not make sense to me, and I’ve made choices that make sense to me, but to no one else. This is a confusing, and very vague statement, but it is the only way I know how to articulate my feelings of how I’m doing in life.

I am twenty-four years old. I still live with my parents. I have no romantic relationship of any kind, and only one friend that lives two and a half hours away. It took me five years to get a bachelor’s degree in psychology. I work at a daycare. No, I do not get paid what my BA in psychology should warrant, but then neither do many millennials in similar situations as myself. And one last thing that I feel necessary to explain my life is something that a discerning person would have gathered already, I have A LOT of anxiety and pretty much zero self-confidence!

But I know that all of the above is who I am, and I accept that about myself. That does not mean that I don’t have a large desire to improve myself. My life could get better, and I could do something about it! But how? I keep going back in my life and wishing I had done things differently. There will always be something further and further back, but I want to focus on from when I was about ten years old.

I come from a pretty large family, with two older sisters, a younger brother, and just a whole bunch of cousins. The majority of the time, I am grateful for this much family, but growing up, I didn’t always see it that way. When my whole family got together, I was typically the youngest girl, someone that was too little (and scared) to play with my older guy cousins and someone that was too uncool to play with my sisters or older girl cousins. Eventually, there came girl cousins that were younger than me, and in an effort to make sure they never felt excluded like I did, I would play with them and hang around them at gatherings. (This is something I think many “middle kids” end up doing.) Then, without really intending to, or realizing it, I became the best babysitter ever.

For the first time in my life, I felt like I was being praised for something actually difficult for many people to accomplish; being a compassionate human being. And I really enjoyed being a positive influence and role model to my little cousins. So, word spread, and I became THE babysitter. And this continued through high school. When most of my friends were getting their first jobs as cashiers, photocopiers, or lab interns; I didn’t feel the necessity to get a “real” job because I had an abundance of babysitting jobs lined up already. This was a thing I was comfortable doing. The kids did whatever I said for the most part, and the whole point of babysitting was to have no one superior to you constantly looking over your shoulder. Yes, I have and inferiority problem… So, maybe I took the easy way out. I mean, I enjoyed it for the most part. Children are funny. They are surprising. They are fascinating to watch grow and learn. I was never bored.

Fast forward a few years and suddenly, I have a lot of experience in child care. But the responsibilities start to get more advanced. Now, I have to make sure children know rules and don’t stand on chairs. I have to tell them to be quiet because there’s too many of them in one room for everyone to talk at a normal level. I have to tell the little ones to stop laughing when they eat, for fear of choking. I have to know exactly with whom the children come and go. I have to get them to walk places instead of run. I have to stop them from hurting each other. I have to know CPR!

At this point in my life, my anxiety has soared through the roof to a point where everyday at work is a stressful day, no matter what. I try to convince myself that this anxiety is easily overcome because parents do it all the time. But do most parents have to deal with seven two-year-olds at once, all by themselves? Have I bitten off more than I can chew in my chosen career path? Did I even really choose this career path, or did I just sort of fall into it? I have so many questions, but there is one that has been pressing on me greatly as of late. Why the heck did I get this stupid, useless Bachelor’s Degree? What good is a degree when I have no relevant experience? What good is having a lot of experience if I keep having to get more education to even attempt to rise up in a career?

Bottom line: the degree that I ended up getting (there were a few bumps and turns in attaining it) is one that I am truly interested. Psychology is a very fascinating and good field of study. But I sort of wish I had experiences in other things related to Psychology, just so I can escape child development.

Not that I dislike child development. It’s a subject that I can actually boast about not only knowing, but understanding. But there is more than just the straight hands on approach to child development that I’m doing right now. Is there a different approach that I could practice that wouldn’t give me so much stress and anxiety? Do I even really want to try a different approach?

I have made a lot of fuss over the stress of my job, but there are indescribable benefits of it as well. When I’m feeling extra lonely for whatever reason and a young child runs up to me, yelling my name and giving me a hug, my heart warms. When my head’s about to explode from all the babies crying and children start laughing and singing a song with me, I feel proud of myself. When I successfully complete small talk with a parent, I feel like an intelligent adult. When a child actually learns something I teach them, I feel accomplished.

But I haven’t felt completely fulfilled yet. Is that too much to ask?

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Caring for Someone that is an Alcoholic

My father is an alcoholic.  It’s not diagnosed, but I’m very sure that he is one.  He comes from a long line of alcoholics, and as it is a genetic ‘disease’, I fear that I may become prone to the addiction.  So, naturally, due to my anxieties, I don’t drink much.

I see what relying on alcohol has done to my father, and no he has never been physically abusive or anything that could harm anyone but himself.  He has many health issues and he has been brought up to believe the delusion that alcohol is a cure all for his pain.

He lost his job because of his reliance on drink, although he would argue any other reason (all of them being of no fault of his own).  He lost his best friend because of a political argument they had when they were both several beers into it.  He didn’t go to his granddaughter’s seventh birthday party because he wanted to stay in bed, resting his hurt back that he had knowingly injured just the day before, thinking he could drink the pain away in time.  And perhaps most tragically, he absolutely refuses to call or visit his father, who is in the late stages of Alzheimer’s disease, and would rather sleep in a pain-reliever induced sleep and drink a six-pack.

I know all of these facts, and yet there is nothing I can do to convince him, help him, or even stop him.

I’ve tried everything I know.  I tried getting him to seek outside help, but his pride (and also probably his anxiety) won’t allow it.  I’ve tried tell him the facts such as what I wrote above, but as he is my senior, he believes he knows better than me, and is convinced his addiction is helping him.  I’ve even tried playing the sympathy card.  I thought perhaps he would consider how tough this whole situation has been on my mother, having to take care of him, as well as four children and herself.  I thought I could appeal to his desire to be a good father by explaining to him the example he is providing my recently turned 21-year-old brother.  I even tried describing to him a future in which he was not around and he never would be able to see his grandchildren grow.  But, nothing I do is helping at all.  It’s pretty much just making it worse.

But the more I read about these type of situations, the more I see what I think I’ve known from the beginning.  There’s nothing I can do.  I’m too close to the situation.  He needs to realize he needs help, and seek it, all on his own.  I have to step back and let him fall even harder before he will want to get back up.  And I can’t even help him get back up, at least not at first.  He has to do that all on his own.

But I’m scared he will be too weak to do it.  And then what?  I want my father to live a happy, healthy life, but I don’t think he’s ever really known what is a happy, healthy life.  I mean he is largely responsible for my happy, healthy life, so is it too much to ask for him to have one?

Look, I have a lot of anxieties, and my father will continue to be one of them.  But I am determined, if not fully resolved, to no longer try to fix him.  Instead maybe I should focus on fixing those around him that he’s hurt.

I go to my niece and nephew’s birthday parties.  I protect my sisters from the ill-mannered opinions my father has about their lives.  I remind my brother that he is not our father, and that my brother is capable of making his own decisions.  I’ll write my Grandpa a card, and maybe dance with him when we visit for Christmas.  And mostly, I give my mother tight, warm, loving hugs!

I just wish I could do more.

That Weird Gray Area Between Gens Y and Z: The Middle Child Area

I was born in 1994, which depending on who you ask, places me either at the very bottom of the Millennial Generation or the at very top of Generation Z.  I remember a time when the latest technologies involved those little portable music players that only played like 30 seconds of a song, and that ever popular phrase, “You’ve got mail!” coming out of the 20-pound desktop computer that my parents let me use in our basement.  But on the other hand, I’ve never really had to check out a book from the library for research purposes, as search engines have been very close by for most of my advanced school career.

So, although my name has mostly been attached to that of the millennial era, I’m not so sure I fully belong there.  It feels like a weird gray area.  But, then, I have a lot of practice in a similar sort of area, as I am a middle child!

Middle children of the world know what its like to live in this weird gray area.  Not just for pop cultural references, but the history, technology, and life lessons that you learn are filtered in a way unlike your other siblings.

Example 1: Curfews

Oldest child will break the curfew, as oldest children like to do, and get grounded for a month.  Then the middle child comes along, sees that the consequences do not outweigh the actions, and doesn’t break the curfew.  Middle child doesn’t get in trouble but is forced into a behavior that may not accurately portray his or her personality.  Then the youngest child, seeing that there were no consequences for the middle, breaks the curfew.  But by then the parents have changed their minds and have either extended the curfew or abolished it entirely.

(Disclaimer: Although I know they exist, I don’t have time, nor do I care, about the repercussions of the behaviors displayed by the oldest and youngest children.)

Example 2: Student Debt

Millennials, due to a demanding economy, are persuaded to take out thousands of dollars of debt in their college education.  They are rewarded with average degrees and an unforgiving job market.  The space between Generations Y and Z (heretofore known as Gray Area) sees the debt that their slightly older pupils are in and realize that the consequences are not worth the actions, and the people of the gray area re-evaluate their life plans accordingly.  This possibly leads them to an overly cautious path that slows them down to an unhealthy level.  Generation Z is a little too soon to evaluate for this example of student debt.  But early observations have seen them throw caution to the wind, and just hope that when they come out of it, the economy will have changed their minds.

So, what does this mean for these weird gray area-ers?  What does it mean for the people that remember 9/11, but were too young fully comprehend the gravity of the situation?  What does it mean for the people that can sing along with every single song on the only five CDs that they owned, but get annoyed when someone adds a song to their carefully selected playlist that doesn’t match?

Where is our place in the world?  I mean I know that sounds like a very general question that everyone should ask.  But for these people in the gray area, we’ve been looking for a label for a long time.

What TV show defines us?

I mean, personally, I was present for the finales of Sabrina the Teenaged Witch and Boy Meets World, as well as the premiers of The Suite Life of Zack and Cody and iCarly.  I loved them all almost equally (except Boy Meets World, that show will always reign supreme!), and I connected with them all in different ways.

But, maybe I’m thinking about this too pessimistically.  I mean I got to experience being a kid during a time when technology was really taking off!  I get to be an adult in an unforgiving job market, fully unprepared, but fully aware that I’m not the only one.

And I think that my comparison to middle children still holds true when I tell you what my middle children’s group in my freshmen year’s Sociology class described as the best and worst things about being a middle child.

The WORST thing about being in the Gray Area: Nobody cares about you.

The BEST thing about being in the Gray Area: Nobody cares about you.

 

We, the people of the Gray Area, are going to change the world. And nobody’s going to see it coming!

Nobody Can be an Introvert Forever

How nice life must be for extroverts, for the outgoing individuals that are comfortable in any social situation.  I envy their capacity to achieve their desires with relative ease. I cannot so much as speak to someone new without getting sweaty palms. But recently I’ve started to discover something that gives me more anxiety than I’m willing to even think about. Unless you’re insanely brilliant, introverts don’t succeed in this world.  If you want to be successful, you have to force yourself to be extroverted.

I was recently talking to my sister about what it takes to lead a fulfilling life (as defined by Western Culture), and we juggled with the idea of narcissism.  In general, narcissism is considered a bad thing.  If you cannot look away from the mirror then you will miss out on the beauty that the rest of the world has to offer.  But resent research has been done that stipulates in this day and age, a healthy dose of narcissism can actually be of benefit! Simply put; confidence is key!  Those who have success do more than just convince others of their superiority; they believe it themselves.  If you ever want to get a good job, or even start a family of your own, you have to believe that you are 100% capable of achieving these things.  This is not an easy task for us introverts.  Our brains have been created and coded to “look away from the mirror” and to see the good in others before we recognize it in ourselves.  But if we are ever to truly succeed, we have to but on an air of selfishness.

That is not to say that extroverts are selfish!  I know of many extroverts that would give away all their money just to see a loved one smile.  But there is a certain mindset of self-worth that extroverts typically have and introverts do not.  Could it be that self-worth is what introverts are lacking that are keeping them from pursuing their dreams?

Personally, I’ve always been an introvert.  My self-esteem is not great, and it has kept me from doing things that I’ve always wanted to do. I am starting to realize that I cannot stay true to myself and still achieve my goals in life.  But how is it right that I have to compromise who I truly am in order to get by in life? Why is it not perfectly acceptable to be introverted? I’ve never asked to be in the spotlight, I just want to achieve something good with my life, and the world seems to be built in a way that makes it difficult for the true me to do so.

So yes when I am interviewing for a job my humility will go out the window. Whenever I become a mother my hesitancy to ask questions will go out the window.  If I want to make a difference in the world I have to shout!  The world just won’t let my actions speak for themselves. I have to speak up for my actions.

So, society has told us to be humble, compassionate, and autonomous.  But at the same time proud, self-assured, and dependent.  I’m sure there’s a happy medium, I just haven’t found it yet!  Is that part of growing up, or should I’ve already figured that one out?

But as the old saying goes, “Fake it, till you make it!” You don’t have to let anyone know you’re really an introvert.  Just say you’re an extrovert and smile at them really big.  They’ll believe you. And then when you become comfortable around them you can let your introverted flag fly!

I find that the sad truth is, extroverts rule the world and decide how introverts get to live.  The only way to achieve your goals is to infiltrate their population. But once you’re in, you can be whomever you want to be.  But that means that you cannot be an introvert forever!

My Social Anxiety Problem is a Bigger Deal than I Thought

So there is something wrong with me. I don’t think I have ever thought otherwise (cue the pity party). I have always felt a little out of step with everyone else, but have always found comfort in the knowledge that I am not the only one that feels this way. I still firmly believe this, but I have recently come to the conclusion that just because I am not the only different feeling (or dare I say unique) person out there, doesn’t make my life any less of a problem. I have stated before and will reiterate; I have social anxiety! Thus of course is a self-diagnosis, but I don’t think anyone that knows me would refute it. I have also stated before in a previous blog that I believe social anxiety, or shy introvertedness, has an annoyingly negative social stigma that allows others to treat us poorly. Again, I still believe this statement, but I find the need to make yet another amendment. I need to work hard at curing my social anxiety, and not just complain about not being accepted. Because although there may be some things that I want to do that others won’t allow me to do them, it is even more a reality that there are many more things that I want to do that I won’t allow myself to accomplish.

I wouldn’t call these new thoughts a ‘change of heart,’ exactly, merely an alteration. I understand myself a little better now, and it’s largely due to my willingness to educate myself on this subject. Of course, I don’t think I have ever had all the answers. But knowing what I know now, I can admit that I was in the wrong. Bottom line: I do have problems, and I cannot function properly.

Now I know I am not a psychologist, but I have done a lot of research, and I believe I meet criteria for avoidant personality disorder. If there ever was a stigma for social anxiety, you better believe there is one for this disorder. It’s basically a disorder in which people have social anxiety but it’s made worse by the person’s need to avoid any potentially aversive/embarrassing situation. This person will go to great lengths to ‘not sound dumb,’ and appear more confident than they actually are inside. I feel inferior in a lot of social situations, and am often reluctant to go to new places and try new things. Ok, I am pretty confident that I have this disorder, maybe I should seek help? Obviously! But even though it is easy for me to admit I have this problem on here, it is insanely difficult for me to admit to anyone in real life.

I mean even the possibility that I could have this PERSONALITY disorder makes me feel sick. I don’t want to think that there is something wrong with my personality, and I definitely don’t want to let other people think there is something wrong with my personality! I mean how will I ever get a job then? I have noted this as well in a previous blog, but shy people have a difficult enough time finding a career that suits them, without the label of personality disorder on them. And then of course there is the problem of relationships, that’s a little too real and a little too painful for me to discuss at this time.

But then, of course, perhaps things have to get worse before they can get better. Maybe it’ll be worth it in the end. I habe been avoiding my true dreams for too long. Perhaps someone can help me actually reach them! Things that i have always wanted but have been too scared to ever go after. Maybe, after some time and therapy, I can achieve them! Or simply, maybe I can make my life a little happier.

My Anxiety Signals

I do a lot of things in my life just because I know that I have to do them.  Most of the time, these are things that I don’t like to do because they make me feel uncomfortable or I just don’t want to do them.  Anything that triggers my anxiety is automatically put on the list of things that I don’t want to do.  Sadly, a lot of things trigger my anxiety.  A lot of basic, normal, everyday expectations are tangled with threads of anxiety in every aspect of my life!  But here’s the thing; I know that I am expected to do these things!  So, in most situations I force myself to work through my anxieties and two thirds of the time, it ends up being something simple and easy to handle.

I sometimes feel like my brain is sending me two signals.  The first one is telling me to stay far away from something, and the second is telling me not to listen to the first one.  I try to listen to the second signal more than the first, but sometimes the first signal is SHOUTING, with alarms going off, and flashing lights.  Kind of hard to ignore.

I have learned to identify most of my anxieties, so that I am prepared to send that second signal when the first one alarms.  But I have not identified every one of them yet, I am still learning.  In the heat of a moment, if an anxiety arises without my expectation, I tend to panic.  It’s not fun, at all!

My panic can take on different forms.  I have had legitimate panic attacks before, and those were some terrifying moments in my life.  But I have also been known to sob into my mother’s shoulder, break something belonging to my brother, or yell and take out frustration on any close family member (bless them)!

So, I do understand my anxiety, I just have no clue how to fix it.  Doesn’t this mean I should see a therapist? ANXIETY ALERT! ANXIETY ALERT! ANXIETY ALERT!

Hhhmmmmmmm.

 

Everyone in My Family has Someone to Vacation with but Me.

I am a loner.  There is no getting past that little factoid.  I would much rather spend hours alone on my computer at home then out socializing at bars with friends, even if they were my two best friends (that’s right I have two friends, humble brag)!  The truth is that in the small community of people around me, I have earned the reputation of ‘homebody.’  Now, I will leave the argument of there being nothing wrong with that label, for another post.  But here’s the thing.  Even homebodies have been known to want to get out of their home every once in a while, despite how hypocritical the identifier becomes.

Let me retrace a few steps and explain how this blog entry came about.

My family had ‘unofficially’ decided to go on a grand vacation this year.  I’m talking, taking seven whole days off work to go to the beach!  Nothing so entirely amazing had ever crossed our paths before this year, and certainly never so well deserved.  Being of a family with a hard working, full-time mother and father, two older sisters (one with a husband and two young kids, one with a fairly serious boyfriend), and a younger brother, we had our hearts set on a big, fun filled family vacation.  I requested off from work, and my mother and father did soon after.  My brother would be off that week as well.  Four down, vacation spot picked out, now for my two older sisters’ final say!

Squat!

My older sister has already had too many vacations with her boyfriend.  She could no longer take any more days off work.  My oldest sister feared her husband would be losing a job soon because of budget cuts and the government.  This leaves my parents, my brother, and me.  My brother wouldn’t really want his vacation spent at the beach, he’d rather go camping with his friends.  All my siblings have perfect excuses as to why they cannot make our great family vacation.  So that would just leave me with my parents!  Or really just my mom because my dad is a horrible vacationer.  But my mom has to go wherever my dad goes, because apparently that’s what married couples do, so that just leaves me.

As I possess neither the courage nor the finances to go on a week long vacation by myself, what else is there to do in a week by myself?  Hey, I already got approved for my week off work, I’m going to take it!  Perhaps, I should use that time to make some new friends!  We could go on a friend vacation next year!

“That should be fun and easy!” said no shy introvert with anxiety and pessimism.  (Well I can assume none of these people ever said that, but I only ever met one…me).

The Art of Anxiety Avoidance

I am really good at avoiding things that make me uncomfortable. Does that make me clever or a failure?  If I mess up on something, most of the time I will dwell on how stupid I was and begrudgingly move forward without questioning or trying to correct my mistakes.  If I don’t want to talk to someone to order food, I’ll just eat old junk food and/or go hungry for the next few hours.  Healthy, right?

Look, this anxiety thing isn’t easy.  Just because I know what I am doing may be foolish or downright dangerous, doesn’t necessarily mean that I can control it. Because when I am in an uncomfortable situation, not only are my palms sweaty, but my heart is beating more rapidly and my head is spinning.  I am not thinking logically, or really at all.  All that’s registering in my brain is how to get out of a situation as quickly as possible so as to stop this sickening feeling from happening.

Fight or flight? I flee every time. I have turned fleeing into an art form.  I have learned to avoid things in advance that I know will cause my anxiety to act up.  So, I am a flee-er…but I don’t want to be one.  My brain is a fighter. Boy, if you could hear the comebacks that my brain produces, but my anxiety does not allow me to say!  Heck, pottermore sorted me into gryffindor for a reason; I want to fight!

But there is just one little part of me. One self-conscious, fearful, intimidated, tiny part of me, that rules my life.  Should I seek help for it? Probably. Will I seek help? Probably not. Seeking help makes me anxious… But, hey, we all got to live with a little catch 22 in our lives.

And finally, do not worry. Yes I avoid basic human responsibility at times, but I survive and create ways in which I can even thrive in this world.  For example, this blog!  And sure, I will never be a great leader, warrior, or even carer.  I have accepted this as a fact.  But one day, I am going to pull the sword of gryffindor out of the sorting hat and cut off the head of a snake.  Just you wait!

The Gift of Compliments

What exactly is a good gift giver?  Is it someone that listens to what you want and gets something off your wish list?  Is it someone who listens to what you need, and gets you a necessity?  Is it somewhere in the middle?  Or is it someone that gets you something random but they know you’ll love it?  Whatever it is, I am not any of these options.  Admittedly, I am a bad gift giver!

But I recently stumbled into something I think might actually be my best gift idea ever!  And best of all, costs nothing!

Have you ever just straight up given someone a compliment?  I hope so, it’s truly amazing!  In my experience, giving the compliment is even better than receiving a compliment.  And I know this all sounds really cheesy, but just hear me out!

Lately, I have been giving my family members quite a unique birthday present.  A list of compliments, one for every year of their life.  It is actually quite challenging and fun.  I mean yes, I can think of twenty some things to say about my sister, even though she is not my favorite person, but it’s a lot of fun to think up some genuine compliments.  My brother’s list was quick, fun, and a breeze.  Inside jokes are the best for these sort of things!  My dad’s list took a long time, but he’s such a character, that it wasn’t too difficult at all.  My mom’s was actually the most difficult, but that was just because my mother is the best person I know and I found it difficult to put that into words!  But even though it took a lot of thought, I was eventually able to put everything into words, and never have I been more satisfied.

You see, I wrote all these compliments down and gave the lists to each recipient.  My mother says she likes to look at it when she’s having a bad day at work.  My father still jokes about some of the compliments.  My brother had a laugh and hung it on his living room wall.  And my sister hugged me!  These reactions are some that I will never forget, and hopefully my words are some that they will never forget either.

So I basically showed them their value to me through my words instead of through my wallet.  Not always going to work, but rarely have I received a gift that touched me so much!  That’s right, my parents presented me with a list for my birthday this past year.  And as I said before, I prefer giving compliments to receiving compliments, (I get all embarrassed and self-conscious) but I do sometimes look at that list, and I can breath a little easier afterwards.

I am not saying that a compliment list is more meaningful than anything material.  Sometimes physical objects are needed to best convey a message.  Heck, I’ve received gifts that have made me sob with heartfelt tears!

But I find that telling someone you love them, without using the word ‘love,’ can be a gift wanted, needed, and randomly personal, that the recipient could cherish forever!

 

Disclaimer: I did actually by these people gifts as well as make them lists!

Scissor Meltdown

This is a little blurb that I wrote some years ago.  It recalls a situation that I find to be important to the reason of my personality.  I wouldn’t call the situation eye-opening exactly, but i do feel like it is something in which a lot of people can relate.  Particularly, people with anxiety.

So, here goes…

I’ve been told that a lot of people have these kinds of moments when they first are out on their own, so I figured I should record this for future reference, and I feel it fits in this little document of struggles.  So I want to talk about the moment I realized that I don’t like being independent.

I had just moved into my dorm for the first time ever.  I was on my own for maybe five or six hours.  I still hadn’t completely unpacked but my parents had left and I was sort of just hanging out in my room lightly chatting with my new roommate.  I had gotten a bed lamp because I had lofted my bed.  It was still packed in cardboard and twisty ties.  I tried with my hands to get it open but was unsuccessful.  I looked down at my still tidy desk and realized I had forgotten to bring one of the most basic essentials.  Scissors.  I groaned inwardly and for the next fifteen minutes or so attempted to pry the package open with my hands in which the only success I had was raising my frustration.

That is when it happened.  My roommate was elsewhere and I was alone in my room.  I broke down crying.  All I could think of was how if my mom where here she would know how to get this thing open without scissors, and how I was so incredibly lame for not being able to handle this simple thing by myself.  I had convinced myself that I was not yet cut out to be independent and that I was in way over my head, and should just call my parents to come pick me up and take me back home.

I struggled with this thought for hours.  Then finally I made the bravest decision that I have ever made in my life so far.  I didn’t call them and ask them to come back home.  Yes that is right, I didn’t want to be called a wimp (even if I truly am one).  My roommate forgot scissors too but her parents accidentally left a box cutter in the room and I used it to open up my lamp.  The next day we made a trip to Walmart together and got some scissors.  Three days later I got a pair of scissors as a present from my mom (she bought them before I bought mine at the store and wanted to surprise me, which is why she didn’t remind me to bring a pair in the first place).

Problems solved right?  Of course not!  I spent the first night texting my mom telling her how scared and miserable I was.  I wanted to cry, but I couldn’t do that in front of my roommate.  I wanted to hear her voice, but again, my roommate!  All I could do was express my feelings through written words, and I hated it (I know, ironic)!  I’ve gotten better but not completely.  I’m still way in over my head, but I’ve come too far to go back now.  Someday, yes I will grow up, but today is not that day!  Today, I’ll admit it.  In fact, I’ll shout it to the rooftops.  I WANT MY MOMMY!

…So, in sum…

Looking back, I notice how a good majority of my actions were controlled because I was too afraid to ask for help, or be vulnerable in front of a stranger.  And yes, the situation was minor, but I remember really hurting.  But now I am left to wonder.  Is fearing one’s own capability to be independent a rare fear?  Maybe it is only amplified because of my shy introversion.  I mean, I believe that being introverted doesn’t make you any less capable as a person, and I still maintain that belief!  But why does the fear, stress, and anxiety have to be so strong!  I still have to ponder this…But until I have an answer, I can only blame Thomas Edison for quite possibly shaving years off my life.

 

What?  You couldn’t burn candles in my dorm room!