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I am...a New Yorker
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[Previous entry: "Adjusting"]

Saturday, August 24, 2002
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Seeing...
Two police officers struggling with an arrest, then half a dozen running to assist, guns drawn. It struck me as odd how rarely I see that sort of thing.

When I visit friends or family, their questions about New York reveal that they see it as a much more harsh place than it is ("How could you ever live there?"), generally. Day to day life here isn't like an episode of NYPD Blue, unless, perhaps, if you're an actual police officer.

Drinking...
Nada, not even going to Our Name is Mud for free wine with my painting.

Joking...
With my boss about getting a beaded curtain to go across the entrance to my cubic/office.

"Boundaries," he teased back.

Crying...
Not at all in the last week. Now that I'm not so exposed, so picked over -- my reservoirs of strength are able to replenish themselves. It's refreshing! I was genuinely afraid of having another job, of losing myself again.

Working...
On a web project I've had on the backburner for months. I know, I like I need another web site! It feels good to do something creative again.

Burning...
My scalp and right ear with a no-lye relaxer and trying to imagine how bad lye must have been.

Remembering...
Why I stopped straightening my hair 7 years ago. All that pain and mess for hair that isn't even very straight.

Irritating...
See above. Youch!

Hearing...
That wrath of god thunder we've had a lot of this summer, waking me up at 6 a.m. I was relieved to hear the raindrops on my window a few minutes later, relieved to realize it was only loud weather.

"Cruisin'" twice in two days. Odd, considering how old the song is. Yesterday, at Odd Job, several people sang along.

Hording...
Food in my wee 'fridge. It only holds so much, but at first I got carried away with the novelty of having cold and frozen things so close at hand.

Retaining...
My presence of mind, the ability to think on my feet and to think clearly. This is something I could not maintain when I was getting interrupted constantly.

Refreshing...
The differences, I know I keep marveling at it, but it is a good thing. The shame of it is things needn't have been so bad at the last place, it was just that I was too exposed to all staff, members and guests and had no control over my time.

Amusing...
Man in the office across the street standing and spinning his executive chair.

I am...trying to find time to write, but I've been pretty busy the past few weeks. There are two reasons I don't update - things are going so terribly I need to focus completely on them, or I'm just busy living. That's the thing about journals - I don't document the most incredible times of my life, because I'm too busy having them.

I'm still trying to get myself up earlier for work. I've never been a morning person, but I find it actually helps to have more time in the morning, instead of sleeping in later and having to rush. As much as I hate getting up early, I'm better off getting up at 7 and having time to check email or watch the news as I putter around getting ready.

There are still a few details to iron out in terms of school. It looks like I won't be able to return to school until the spring. I found out two weeks ago that two of my loans were still in default. I was assured by the consolidation company that they included absolutely, positively every loan taken out on my social security number.

I went over the paperwork a few times, but every letter I received had different numbers (from 5-10) and amounts of the loans, depending on if they combined the loans for each semester or year and on varying fees and interest.

I think it's just as well, since fall is application and testing season. I need to sign up for the GRE, apply for schools, apply for scholarships and fellowships, etc. this fall. As my mom pointed out, all that plus a new job and starting therapy is plenty. I might take some marketing courses online, but nothing too demanding. One (hundred) thing at a time.

That's part of my problem - I just have too many talents, too many things I'm interested in, so much I want to do in my lifetime. So I do nothing!

. . .

Someone told me recently that I just love drama, any drama will do. I think often I don't assess a situation well enough initially. I might even dismiss some of my own misgivings, particularly about people, in an effort to be fair and not pre-judge. I should listen to that gut instinct every time.

I don't miss not having time for myself or my friends, nor do I miss being so emotionally exhausted on most work days that I could not function once I finally left my desk. I don't miss passing out in my dinner.

I don't miss crying myself to sleep night after night because I can't take it any more. I don't miss feeling hopeless because there is utterly no response to the hundreds of resumes I've been sending out for months. I don't miss sleeping through the entire weekend; I don't miss it never being enough.

I like having a life outside of work. Indeed, I treasure it. I may not be doing what I would prefer from 9-5, but nor do they own me entirely.

. . .

Thursday night I went to an orientation for NYU. Although I won't be going in the fall, I thought I could pick up some useful information for the Spring. I had been to an open house and expected the same sort of event. Instead, the various speakers each took time to say "Welcome to NYU." Each also emphasized that advisors and such were always available.

It's so different than my experiences with other large campuses - no trial by fire. The advisor at my table struck up a conversation with me because we have the same name and, she said, "You spell it correctly." Coincidentally, she also tells people her name is on the money.

She actually pointed me to degree-packaging programs in another university system, upon hearing I have about 140-150 units. No use spending $50k at NYU when I'm so close. I will apply for their Master's in Publishing program for next year. Good food, good advice, good night.

[Next entry: "Coming Back to Me"]
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