Daily Inkling Prompt: Backtracking
“You return to your hometown or community after five years of being away. Give us a rundown as you rediscover things place-by-place with new eyes.” Continue reading “Daily Inkling | Wooden Castles”
Today, I want to tell you all a story. A story about lies, bullying, drugs, and abuse. This story is about the time that I realized that I deserved better than the situations that I was put in. Continue reading “Control”
My layers make me who I am, and I am pretty damn awesome.
I am closer to 30 than I am to 20, and while I have been for over a year, technically, it is really just starting to hit me now.
In response to The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt | Phase
I am 26 years 0 months 27 days old.
I am 312 months 27 days old.
I am 1360 weeks 4 days old.
I am 9,524 days old.
I am 228,576 hours old.
I am 13,714,560 minutes old.
I am 822,873,600 seconds old… well, roughly.
I am closer to 30 than I am to 20, and while I have been for over a year, technically, it is really just starting to hit me now. I’m at the age now where, not only have many of my friends graduated with a 4-year degree from college, but some now also have Master’s degrees. Many of my friends have reached their goals as graduates, and go to their dream jobs (or something close to it, at least), and make money, and then go home to their house, that they own, and drink wine, while watching Netflix… or whatever it is functioning adults do. Even if they didn’t go to, or graduate from, college… everyone seems to be doing better than me in life. Everyone. Because of this, I’ve become withdrawn, bitter, and angry. I’m sure people are tired of my whining and complaining, since the advice and tough love that I used to receive from friends and loved ones has been replaced by absolute silence. But just for fun, let’s reach into my mind for a moment.
I have no degree, but still owe my old college money, 7 years later.
I have no job (granted, that’s because I stay home with my son, but before that, it was endless, dead end jobs).
I have no house, and constantly get stuck renting horrible places, because that is all I can afford, because of the previous two things.
I have no car, I don’t even have a license. This makes remedying ANY of the precious three things much more difficult.
I am going nowhere. I am getting older, and my life is going absolutely nowhere. I had such high hopes for myself when I was younger, and everything went wrong. For a long time, I blamed everything falling apart on other people/things. I was in such a hurry to grow up, and prove that I was an adult, that I forgot that I was just a stupid, broke kid. I refused to accept help, or listen to reason, because I wanted people to think I had it all under control. But I didn’t.
I had to drop out of college after one (terrible) year because I could no longer afford it. I thought I had my student loan situation handled, but I didn’t, and it all fell through. My mom gave me a loan to cover my first semester so that I would be able to finish the year, but then I couldn’t pay for my second semester. I still owe both my mom, and the school, money. As I said… it has been 7 years, and thanks to my track record of moving every year, and landing nothing but minimum wage jobs, I haven’t been able to make a dent in that debt. I hadn’t gone to school out of the country, to go to school with my then boyfriend, and get away from my family, I could have gone to the local community college, and probably have graduated. I could have gotten my degree, and maybe saved some money by staying at home, and gotten my own place.
Everything that I have done in my adult life, I’ve done for the wrong reasons. For love, for a guy, for convenience… I never thought of the consequences of any of my actions, and now I am stuck dealing with all of them at once, at a stage in my life when I should have my shit at least somewhat together. I wanted to grow up too fast, and now I’m stuck feeling like a helpless child, unable to move forward with my life because I don’t have any of the means to do so.
I am tired of it. Despite my thirst for even a shred of independence, I am always stuck relying on other people just to survive. To help bring me to work, to help bring me to the store, to help me with money when shit goes wrong, to share my space and help me pay the bills because minimum wage just doesn’t cover it, even in a slum. I’ve had to rely on other people throughout my entire adult life, up to this point, and I am ashamed. I have a son now, and while he depends on me 100%, I still depend on everyone around me. I don’t want him growing up knowing that his mother was useless. That she never finished college, and never had a decent job, and never did anything important with her life. And I want so much more for him, so he does not turn out like me, but how do you instill those values in your child, when you are hardly an example yourself?
I try to live without regrets, but when it comes down to it, I feel like I regret everything. I am torn between wishing I could have done everything differently, and wishing I had done nothing differently, because it would have changed my present 110%. Would my life be better? Would it be worse? Would I even be alive?
I don’t sleep anymore. When I do sleep, I hardly dream. I am always tired, despite doing nothing with my life, and I am always sad. I am sad, and angry, and tired. Sometimes, I wonder why I even bother getting out of bed. Everything feels pointless. And I don’t know what to do about any of it. I am stuck.
Is this what they call a quarter-life crisis? Or is this an existential crisis? Either way, it sucks.
Thanks for reading, friends.
The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt 2/12/2016 | Alma Mater
“You’ve been asked to speak at your high school alma mater — about the path of life. (Whoa.) Draft the speech.”
“Hello, young humans. This school looks so different than the last time I was here. My name is Jan, although I used to go by Janise when I went to school here. I made a conscious decision to change my name, thanks to twelve years of mispronunciations, and it made my life so much better. So, if I don’t mention it later, my first bit of advice to you is that if people are mispronouncing your name, and it is driving you nuts, go by something else. Anyway, I’m here today to talk to you all about the path of life, though I’m not sure why I was asked to fly 1,200 miles to come back here and speak, when my path of life hasn’t exactly been successful.
I was an above average student most of the time, but I was easily distracted by things that had nothing to do with school. Boys, family drama, having fun with friends, etc., and that was a huge mistake. If I could change one thing about my high school career, I would go back and try harder, and focus more. I got lazy during my senior year, and my grades reflect that. I was smart enough to start applying to colleges early, which is super important, but I played it safe, because I was afraid of rejection. Some of my top choice schools never even got my application, because I just didn’t want to hear a “no”.
I got accepted into every school that I applied to, but sacrificed my education, as well as my friends and family, for a boy, and ended up leaving the country to attend school with him. Big mistake. We didn’t last, and I am still in debt to that school, over seven years later. I had to drop out, and bounce around from crappy job to crappy job, just trying to stay above water, and pay my bills. I would do anything to be able to go back to school, and finish my degree, so that I can have a good career that supports my family.
If you take anything away from my speech today, anything at all, please, focus on school. Boys will come and go, and drama will pass. High school doesn’t last forever, and things will get better. Even if you don’t believe in yourself, and you’re afraid of those rejection letters, apply to schools that you feel might be out of your comfort zone, or even out of your financial reach. There are scholarships and grants out there to help you, and I wish that I had done more research on the matter before I graduated. Who knows, I might have actually graduated.
Thank you for inviting me to speak here today. Stay in school, kids!”
Thank you for reading, friends.
The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt 2/8/2016 | Say Your Name
“Write about your first name: Are you named after someone or something? Are there any stories or associations attached to it? If you had the choice, would you rename yourself?”
My name is Janise. Say it out loud. It is pronounced the same as Janice, or Janis, but spelled slightly differently. When you look at my name, what pronunciation did you use? Did you say it correctly, or did you say Jan-EE-se? If that’s what popped into your head, then we can’t be friends anymore.
Well, fine, we can be. I guess. You’re lucky you’re cute.
Growing up, everyone mispronounced my name, and I never understood why. My name is not exotic. It’s somewhat uncommon, but, seriously? Maybe because it’s my name, but when I look at it, I think of Janice. I mean, have you ever met someone named Jan-EE-se? I’m sure they exist, but I certain’y haven’t met one. From kindergarten, all the way until my senior year in high school, every teacher that I ever had pronounced it wrong. Usually more than once. In fact, my homeroom teacher, which I had for all four years of high school, never once pronounced my name properly. He was also our senior class adviser, who called our names at graduation for our diplomas, and I had to remind him how to say my name. Twice.
Towards the end of my senior year, I started going by Jan, and I still do to this day. I don’t know if it was just where I grew up, but people out here (I grew up in southern Maine, and now live in central Illinois) seem to know how to correctly pronounce my name, and I’ve only had a handful of instances in the last 7 or 8 years where people slipped up and called me Jan-EE-se. But I still go by Jan. Dropping those few extra letters has changed my life, honestly. I gained a whole new persona.
With all of that having been said, I do like my name. I’m not named after anyone special or significant, but it is my name. It’s not rare, or exotic, but it also isn’t a common name. I used to detest my name, and always asked my mom why she had to name me something so weird. But, really, my name isn’t weird at all. Now that I am old enough to appreciate it, I like that it is spelled a bit differently, because it gets people talking, and it a good ice breaker whenever I have to introduce myself, like at a job interview, or some other situation where the person would be looking at my name on paper. I finally grew into the uniqueness of my name, and I wouldn’t change it at all. Not one, single letter.
Do you have a name that is often mispronounced?
Thanks for reading, friends.