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Archive for April, 2010

April 29, 2010 1 comment

I am a royal screw-up.

Categories: Uncategorized

I don’t even know.

April 29, 2010 Leave a comment

Boston, you’re beginning to break my heart, bit by bit.

Yesterday was a difficult day at work. There were a multitude of bums hanging around outside the store in the morning. One in particular caught my atttention, as his efforts to solicit money went unnoticed by the passersby.

“Ma’am do you have any spare change?”

“Sir, I’m trying to get on the T…?”

“Please, may I have some change? I’m short on fare for the T.”

First I cried because this man was ignored. NO ONE even gave him a second glance. Not one. People just brushed past him, hurrying on their way to work or whatever. People just kept moving, parting around him. No one stopped.

And there he stood, in the middle of the crowd. Dejected and defeated and realizing that no one was going to help him.

So then I started to cry a bit more, because I have seen this man before. I have seen him every day since I started working at the flower shop, and my heart breaks because I know he doesn’t need money for the T. He’s not going anywhere. He never goes anywhere.

I got even more upset when I realized that I have become like those who pass by him each day: hardened and in a hurry. I’m not willing to give my hard-earned money to a bum who likely will spend it on booze or drugs. It’s just not happening. So I understand why those people rush past him. It’s frustrating.

But it was his desperation that was hard to watch. It’s all over the city. Everyone’s desperate to make it. To scrape up enough money to cover the rent or bills. We all work hard and we’re all determined to make ends meet.

Yesterday morning also was difficult in my interactions with customers. I’m tired of being treated as though I am a second-class citizen. I’m tired of the assumptions that I have no schooling; that I am broke because my hands are dirty and calloused.

Rude.

I don’t appreciate your tip, Mr. Stuffy Rich Man, when you give it to me not because I did a kick ass job putting together a creative bouquet for you, but because “everyone needs a little help, right?” Well, no. I do not need help from you. Even if it may be true that that dollar paid for my dinner that night.

When I went back outside the shop to finish the display that same man was still outside, begging for change, this time with an even more palpable air of desperation around him.

It made me tear up again. Then I started laughing at myself because I realized I was standing at work. Crying. Pathetic.

Then I thought, “Who the hell cares? No one is going to notice anyway.”

How true is that.

No one noticed me yesterday. And that, friends, is the most exhausting thing of this whole experience.

Categories: Uncategorized

Learning experiences.

April 26, 2010 Leave a comment

My Mimi fought a long hard battle with Alzheimer’s. It was hard to accept and hard for the entire family to handle.

What this impressed upon me was the important of time: how quickly it goes, and the fear of running out of time.

When I moved to Boston I moved in such a hurry because my biggest fear was staying in Texas and running out of time. I worried that I would become bogged down with a job and never leave. That I would settle for something that I didn’t want.

I’ve learned a few things through this Boston experience.

One thing I learned is that I have more time than I thought. I’m only 21. As long as I learn to live fully each day, take opportunities that are given to me and not take anything for granted I’ll be fine.

The other thing I’ve learned is that I have absolutely no idea what in the hell I want to do with my life.

And even though I’m still figuring out I’m open to where it leads me. As long as I always have the freedom to move around or change my mind I’ll be fine.

Categories: Uncategorized

I forgot!

April 17, 2010 Leave a comment

You know what I just realized?

I can’t remember exactly what my room at home in Texas looks like. I remember it, yes, but I have forgotten some of the books I own; or the decorations.

Is this normal?

I think it’s good. I think it means this room, this apartment, has begun to feel like home. Finally.

Categories: Uncategorized

Just one wish today.

April 15, 2010 2 comments

Today I woke up with one prayer on my heart: “Lord, please give me the strength to get through today. Just today.”

That’s all I could ask for.

I’ve been having a hard time lately. Working an average of 60 hours a week and not having a chance to actually go out and meet people is beginning to take its toll on me.

This prayer stayed on my heart as I slugged through my morning routine. It pounded through my head as I showered, dried my hair, dressed and put on the little bit of make-up my sleep-deprived eyes could handle.

I repeated it as I sat on the bus on the way to Copley at 7:30 a.m. with the rest of the morning drones. The drones who were probably cursing their lives as much as I was mine at that moment.

I said it to myself after getting humiliated by a stupid rich b**** who literally curled her lip at me when she saw the dirt until my nails and the callouses on my fingertips.

I said it again after that same woman made me blow up three helium balloons for her until she was satisfied with one, then sat through the next five minutes when she came back three times to order me to refill it because it was “deflating.” I said it once more for good measure when she came back for a FOURTH time and demanded a refund because I had done a subpar job of filling her damn balloon, and “it just wasn’t working for her.”

And then I tied that balloon to the stool in the store to prove to myself that I was, in fact, NOT an incompetent idiot who lacked the ability to fill up a stupid, worthless “Happy Birthday” balloon.

Stupid, stupid, stupid balloon. For the record, I filled it just fine. It didn’t deflate. That journalism degree is being put to good use, let me just tell you.

That brings me to my next point: my degree.

I understand that the economy sucks right now. I understand that this means it’s not guaranteed that I will immediately get a job upon graduating, because obviously, that didn’t happen. I get that sometimes you have to work jobs you don’t expect in order to pay the bills.

But I do not appreciate being made to feel like I am stupid by my employers or the people who come in to the shop because I’m still learning about flowers.

I have a degree, Mr. and Mrs. Employer. Yes, my degree is journalism, and I know that this means you think that I bring absolutely nothing to the table. But here’s what I bring.

I listen to you when you speak, even if secretly I think you’re just blowing out steam. I’ll still listen, and I will make every effort to understand.

If I don’t understand I will ask intelligent, pertinent questions.

I can handle tough customers. I may sigh and complain about them after they leave but you’ll never see me let go of my emotions in front of them. Never.

I am observant. I notice it when people are acting funny and am not afraid to point it out to you.

I’m resourceful. I’m always ready for the unexpected and if things do not go as planned I will do my best to right the wrong or go with whatever is happening.

So, please, Mr. and Mrs. Employer, although I am not perfect at this job, please keep in mind I’m trying. I pride myself on being a hard worker and trust me, I don’t want to let you down.  Keep in mind I’ve worked no less than 50 hours a week for you since the day that I started more than a month ago. Realize that I’m getting tired. Please realize that I have another job outside of this one. And that when I open the shop before 8 a.m. each morning, I get extremely pissed off if I am not allowed a break until 4 p.m. Legally, that’s unacceptable.

Please, Mr. and Mrs. Employer, understand that I get frustrated when I am told different things by each of you. And understand that I hate following one set of directions and then completely changing everything to comply with a separate set of instructions.

Figure out what you want. Not only will you make my life easier, but it’ll make your life easier as well. I’ll follow your directions. I’m a stickler for directions. That’s why I get so frustrated.

I don’t like feeling like I’m doing a less than acceptable job. And that’s the only way I’ve felt for the last week and a half. I can’t stand it when bosses nit-pick and criticize every single, itty-bitty, teeny-tiny thing. Especially in front of customers. Don’t make me look bad just because you are the boss.

Employees do better with encouragement. That’s all I’m saying.

So that was the prayer that was on my heart.

To be honest, Boston is wearing me out. It’s exhausting. Between all the work and the walking and the people and the writing it’s a shock to my poor little Texas system. I’m still living in a “slow” state of mind and I’m trying to get used to this fast-paced world I’ve thrust myself in.

I realize that my last few posts, including this one, have been extremely discouraging and I am sorry for that. I know it makes me sound sad. I know it makes me sound ungrateful for this job and this beautiful life I’m living. I just need a small break. A trip home would be the perfect breath of fresh air for my heart.

I’m craving Texas. I want a bear hug from my Papa and I want Sunday dinner with my family. I want a wine night with Chris and I want to go shopping with Wendy. I want to fight with my sister over the space in our bathroom back home. I want to see my mom and dad.

As I write this I’m terrified that admitting these things is admitting defeat.

Does feeling this way mean that on some level I’ve failed completely on this move?

I don’t want to go back to Texas for good. I just want a visit. I’m entranced with Boston. It makes me smile. Most of the time. Especially when it looks like this. 🙂

George Washington in the Public Garden

Or this:

Boston skyline from a water taxi

I just need a break. I’ve never been homesick like this before. I’ve never craved so much familiarity.  

I realize that my last few posts, including this one, have been extremely discouraging and I am sorry for that.

I know it makes me sound sad. I know it makes me sound ungrateful for this job and this beautiful life I’m living.

I just need a small break. A trip home would be the perfect breath of fresh air for my heart.

I’m craving Texas. I want a bear hug from my Papa and I want Sunday dinner with my family. I want a wine night with Chris and I want to go shopping with Wendy. I want to fight with my sister over the space in our bathroom back home. I want to see my mom and dad.

As I write this I’m terrified that admitting these things is admitting defeat.

Does feeling this way mean that on some level I’ve failed completely on this move? I’d like to believe that I’m allowed this time. Can this still be my transition period, a time for me to adjust to this place that is so unbelievably, radically different from what I grew up in?

I don’t want to go back to Texas for good. I just want a visit. I’m entranced with Boston. It makes me smile. Most of the time.

I just need a break. I’ve never been homesick like this before. I’ve never craved so much familiarity. 

So, my dears, this is what my heavy heart has to say to you today. 

I’m sorry it’s such a downer. Hopefully my next post will be more upbeat.

Waxing poetic about the subway…hm.

April 13, 2010 1 comment

My last few posts have been scarce and rushed and melancholy.

I hate that because I don’t like to think that I am using this blog simply as a place to moan about my sad feelings.

This blog is more than that to me, I assure you all. It’s a place to write. Obviously. What I mean is, it’s a place where I just write about anything and nothing and everything in between. Writing novels or poetry isn’t for me, at least not right now. (As much as I wish I had the talent to write a novel.) I just like to give commentary on my mediocre life, and try to make it sparkle a bit more.

Today I managed to move past my lonely feelings for the time being.

I have been homesick like crazy lately. I think it’s the fact that Boston is SO different from Texas and that I’ve never been away from home for this long before. It’s starting to all get to me, and although I love living here more than anything, I am extremely ready for my  trip home in May.

I can’t wait to see my best friends and my family. I’m ready to visit my old haunts, and, if someone lets me borrow a car, drive around for a bit. I want to sit in the hot, dry, West Texas sun and feel the wind blow past my face. A dust storm would be lovely. I’m looking forward to that familiar drive between Midland and Lubbock and watching how the land spreads away from the highway in a most lovely fashion. It’s going to be a great trip.

And although I sound like I miss everything about home and like I’m drowning in nostalgia, really, I am not. I know Boston is where I should be right now.

I know this because simple little things make me positive I’m doing the right thing. Ijust have to keep looking for reminders when I forget for a little while.

Take yesterday, for instance. It was my day off and after spending the morning at Barnes an Noble reading I decided  I needed to be outside and around people. I decided that hopping on the train to Cambridge was exactly what I needed. There’s always something interesting happening in Harvard Square.

So here’s where it happened. As I waited for the red line train to Alewife to arrive I looked out across the tracks and saw the same guy who always is there playing his guitar and singing a soulful song. It was so cliche to see a musician in the subway that I couldn’t help but smile. Then the train arrived.

Keep in mind I have never had to use public transportation before I moved here. It’s still a novelty.

The train rushed passed me, causing everything on the other side of it to blur. The noise of it drowned out the musician. The rush of air pulled at my hair, whipping it into my eyes. I closed my eyes for a moment and took it all in: the noise, the wind, the feeling of having somewhere to be and the ability to get there quickly. It’s small moments like that that jolt me into remembering how much of a city I am: the fact that I wax poetic about catching a train proves this.

I don’t know why I’ve been so lonely lately.  I don’t know why I find it so hard some days and other days it’s nothing to me.

But I do know that deep down I love this city. And I know that for now I love my flower shop job and my writing job. The people I come in contact with each day make this worth it.

And that will be my mantra each time I start to feel lonely or homesick.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: , , , , ,

Loneliness will keep you company if you let it.

April 12, 2010 2 comments

I am prefacing this post with a few statements.

I am not writing this to garner sympathy.

I am not looking for an influx of calls, e-mails or texts from well-meaning people back home. I DO NOT want to talk about it.

I just want to write and hope that I begin to feel better.

Because right now I feel lost. I feel alone.

Like I’ve said in previous posts, I need to start meeting more people. I have fun with everyone I work with, and I enjoy spending time with my roommates. But something’s got to give.

At work it’s so easy to talk to people. When girls my age come in to the shop I have a reason to chat with them: I’m helping them pick out flowers for their mom or best friend. I can put myself into their situation and help them find something pretty. I’m allowed to ask about the occasion and find out more. But there’s that safety of having a reason to start a conversation; a wall between us: I work there. To them, all I am is the girl in the flower shop. But to me, as creepy as it sounds, those short conversations are gems that I hold on to. I miss my best girl friends at home, and those encounters are something important to me.

At Tech I had a group. I had people who achored me. By moving here I cut the cord and now I’m terrified that maybe I made the wrong decision. I second-guess myself so much. Even though I love my flower job and even though I miraculously found a small writing job I ask myself at night sometimes if it’s worth it.

When will I find my place here? It seems like it’d be so easy to disappear.

Being lonely sucks.

I hope you all know how much I love you.