The Truth| Adultish

This wasn’t the blog I planned to put up this week, but when life gives you lemons… you call your mom-thing and cry. When I started Adultish I wanted everyone to be able to gleam a  bit of wisdom from my mistakes, follow my journey and only experience the lessons and none of the hardship. I wanted to learn the shitty things and then tell you all how to better deal, or avoid those situations. I put so much focus on maintaining goals, being “adult”, having your shit together… being “perfect”. And while I do believe that growing up and paying your bills is undeniably important, I don’t think the way I have been doing this adulting thing is very realistic. Let’s rewind, shall we…

When I was married I was a totally different person. Very in my feelings and emotional, very pity-party and not really fun. I didn’t have my license, didn’t try too hard to get it, and I didn’t really strive or work towards anything at all. I counted on my husband very intensely, and that’s what “worked” in our relationship. Until, it didn’t work anymore. This all happened, probably, when I started to realize there was more in the world than what I was doing. I wanted to run again, and read controversial things, go to friends houses…  I think I was starving for something new and exciting and that was not the person my husband married. Now, of course, I don’t know if this is why I went from married to homeless, but I am sure it probably played a pretty significant role. I don’t think I will ever know the reason why- but I do know I was starting to get very restless with the same thing everyday.

Now I have always been extremely hardcore. For most people there is black, white, and gray. For me it’s black and white. I either master something or totally screw it up. When budgeting I will either not spend a dime for 27 days, or spend an entire paycheck in an hour. I really have zero middle ground. . When I was married I was super dependent. And now that I am divorced and on my own I am stubbornly independent. The moment I moved out a switch flipped and I told myself I couldn’t screw up again. I felt like I had a second chance to do things and make something of myself. It’s like I got so scared of ever depending on someone or messing up that I made a vow to only count on myself and work my tail off. I honestly think if I was on fire I wouldn’t ask for help some days. It’s annoying, even to me. I think all of these responses to life trauma are extremely normal…

So let’s come back to the present moment where I am newly 24, divorced for about a year and my day dreams occupy an incredible amount of my time. I am obsessed with trying to save money, finish my degree, excel in my job, keep my place clean, trying to sleep 8 h/night, get A’s in my classes, keep up with Adultish, and be a nice person. All of these things are incredible, and absolutely imperative to work on in order to be a functioning human being. But I had a conversation that shook me to my depths.

*set the scene: me in tears (because I had lemons for lemonade but someone had better lemons… or something like that)*

Me: “But I am just agitated! I am working so hard, trying to do all of these things, and I’ve only made it this far!”

Magical Human: “You have only been on your own for a little over a year. You got a car, your license, saved, started school, moved into your own place… You’ve done the best you can with what you have… I mean what is it you think you are missing or lacking?”

And boom, like a ton of bricks crashing into my mediocre lemonade it hit me- I have some severely unrealistic expectations. In trying so hard to better myself and work towards the next thing, I have starved myself from reality and being appreciative of where I am. I really do remember crying and hurting because I wanted to have some money saved, and I wanted my own car, and the freedom a license brought. Now I have that, and so much more but I am only looking at what’s next. All I can think is how I want to advance in my job NOW, and move into a bigger place NOW, and get my degree NOW. But when we become so consumed with what we don’t have, it mentally destroys us.

I have a whole time line in my head of how things will work out, but most of these things take a considerable amount of time, like saving X amount and finishing my degree. These are excellent long term goals, but I need to focus on short term goals that help me get to the long term ones.

Of course I still totally believe in the importance of bettering yourself and getting your shit together. I will always be the person to try and make everything perfect- that’s just who I am. I will always rearrange my place 6 times a month and need to buy a new pair of shoes to spruce up my life. It would be a cold day in hell the day I didn’t want to update, organize or better something.

If you take anything from all of the tears and hydration I lost learning this lesson, it’s two things…

One- Long term goals are great. Short term goals help you keep your sanity.

Two- Sometimes the ability to see where you are versus where you were is the lesson it’s self. Always be grateful for where you are in life- even if it’s still miles from your goal.

 

 

 

Relationship Not Relationship| Adultish

I am in a “relationship not relationship”. I don’t expect you to understand that though. I can’t say that we understand that either.

A lot of people lately have asked when Vegas Friend and I will “go public”. Well, I have news for you, never.

Wait, what?! Why?!!!

Because Vegas Friend and I were never supposed to last a year (holy crap how has it almost been a year). We were just good friends that had known each other for years. We were both safe, and compassionate people. We were both just there. I was going through a divorce and angry, lost, confused. Vegas Friend was starting over again as well. We were just two fucked up people who understood.

I would have never thought that I would be the one to have “meaningless” relationships. Vegas Friend and I will not get married. We have no plan on moving in with each other, or any other long term commitment. We are just REALLY good friends .

It’s so hard to explain Vegas Friend. Especially since I know he will read this and make fun of it- thanks. I love Vegas Friend- but not in that way. He has been with me since basically the beginning. He knows so much about me and has helped me overcome a lot of my anxiety and fears. He has taught me what it is supposed to be like when someone cares for you.

Now granted he also pisses me off beyond belief. He pushes me until I feel like I can’t breathe sometimes. He keeps me within the lines of normal.

He is the hardest example the “next guy” will have to live up to. He is the person who I’ve called at 2am screaming in pain. He’s who taught me the joy and possibilities of life in general.

So I will take this relationship not relationship. Cherish every moment for what it is with out overthinking. I will continue to learn from Vegas Friend and he will continue to make fun of me- until we don’t. And that’s all there is.

24 Things Learned In 24 Years

This year was funnnnn. NOT. 23 was not at all like I expected it, and yet I wouldn’t change a single thing about it. So many things happened in just the past 12 months, but I feel like I am 10 years older at the same time. Let’s recap shall we.

  • Got divorced
  • Got my license
  • Moved out
  • Got my first car
  • Got my own place
  • Went to Vegas
  • Vegas Friend and I became “Vegas Friend and I”
  • Started paying all my own bills
  • Went to Palm Springs
  • Flew to Texas
  • Advanced in my job
  • Started school again
  • Made a shit ton of mistakes
  • Started Adultish
  • Sperm Donors release

You get the picture. It’s been quite the whirlwind. But along with all of the crazy bad and crazy good lies the lessons I learned.

  1. Everything happens for a reason. Even if you know the reason or not, things have a way of working out and that’s all you need to worry about.
  2. The stigma around “divorce”is a lot worse than the actual divorce. Religion, expectations and judgements are what make divorce hard. The glares and nasty comments from people tear you to shreds, not your ex.
  3. Forgiveness is key. There is never a good enough reason to harbor unforgiveness. Nothing should steal your joy from you.
  4. Self care is essential. Take that bubble bath, read that book, eat the ice cream. Life is only fun when you break the rules.
  5. Sleep is a necessity. I am someone that can’t live on minimal sleep. I need at least 5 hours a night  on a continual basis in order to survive and not be  a basket case.
  6. Don’t let your gas light come on. There is no reason for that amount of anxiety if you can prevent it. (ps- I really should get gas)
  7. Sometimes buying the more expensive thing saves you money in the long run. This comes especially true to face care and clothing.
  8. The realization you don’t know anything. It’s kind of sobering, but also freeing at the same time.
  9. Knowing when to say you’re not okay. I used to just push through when my depression was really bad and I wouldn’t open up to anyone. But I learned that if you tell someone you’re struggling they keep an eye on you- and sometimes that’s enough to pull you through.
  10. The importance of making your bed. It sets the tone for the whole day. Plus, when you come home your place looks all sophisticated (kind of like you have your life together, except, you don’t. At all).
  11. The best way to overcome your fear is to face it head on. Be it a fear of heights or (like me) a fear of driving- the only way to get over something is to come face to face with it.
  12. Traveling is always the answer. If there’s one thing that I could change in recent years, I would have traveled more.
  13. You will never be in a situation you regret as long as you’re constantly true to yourself. I strive so hard to make sure situations don’t change who I am in my core- sometimes it works better than others.
  14. The “F” word is the best. That is all.
  15. Cooking is a gift. Some people have it, and some people do not. Like me.
  16. Not everyone is going to like you. Which works out really well, because you’re not going to like everyone either.
  17. Nurture the relationships that mean the most to you. Send flowers for no reason, buy someone lunch, say sorry when you’re a jerk.
  18. The importance of your past. Where we come from has a lot to say about where we are going. Everything we have done is because of our past- don’t shame it, embrace it.
  19. Know that people make mistakes, and they don’t know it. This one sucked to learn. EDF made mistakes. But she did’t know it, didn’t understand it’s impact, thought it was the right thing to do. Parents don’t come with instruction manuals, they are just winging it. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.
  20. “Being cool” is never worth it. You should never change who you are just to fit in, or for someone to like you.
  21. Chocolate is life. Only dark chocolate though, move over milk chocolate.
  22. Wash your dishes immediately. Seriously, there is nothing worse than dishes that have sat and have hardened food on them.
  23. Deciding you don’t want to have kids is YOUR decision. And should you ever change your mind, that’s okay too.
  24. The beauty of healthy relationships. Having genuine, real, safe relationships are so vital to your growth and well being.

If you made it to the end of this— DANNNG I am impressed. Three of my fingers fell off while typing this long thing. Be sure to check out Day 1 and Day 2 of May Blog A Day.

What have you learned in your advanced age?

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The Struggle Bus

I don’t know if you’ve heard of me, but I am the Struggle Bus. I am what you ride when shit gets too real to ride the Easy Train. Years ago I was the Easy Train, I was new and shiny, engine purred like a kitten and my Mercedes hood ornament was so shiny!But that was years ago. Now I don’t have a hood ornament, some ass-wipe kids took it. My seats are mostly metal, the cushions and fabric are torn off from extreme use, and age. I am kind of stinky, a mix of wet yuck and gasoline. I used to drive smoothly, but now my exhaust pipe blows black gunk and my engine might have a cat stuck in there. But, you already know who I am- who am I kidding.

I am the Struggle Bus. The “I forgot my matching shoe and to brush my hair” transit vehicle on your way to work. I drove you to the store with your last nineteen bucks. It was twenty but I hit a bump and a dollar flew out of the window. Oh, almost forgot to mention how the windows don’t roll up or down because they are cracked and have baseball sized holes in them. I think it gives me character.

I am the Struggle Bus. I am the reason you spilt a smoothie on your white pants before that meeting with your boss today. You know, the meeting where said smoothie-pants smelled up the entire 3rd floor conference room and people just looked at you as if you were a puppy who peed on the rug. I picked you up from that meeting too… except…..PS. You left your keys on the passengers seat and I have zip ties for door handles- so good luck on getting those back. I’m pretty innovative with zip ties.

I am the Struggle Bus. Everyone rides me from time to time. I am usually taking brand new moms to their baby’s first doctor appointment, you know, the one where the doctor freaks you out about everything and then you cry because your baby lost more than 10% of its body weight. Or sometimes I come and pick you up right after a night of intense drinking, I do that for a lot of people. Maybe that’s why I smell?

I know what your thinking. Why the hell would you want to ride the stinky-cat-engine Struggle Bus when you COULD ride the Easy Train? Cause the Easy Train is pretty sweet. Usually you ride it when you have more than twenty bucks for the week and clean pants. And the Easy Train is nice, actual seat cushions, and it doesn’t even stink!

But everyone gets to ride the Struggle Bus, it’s a right of passage. The type of lesson that makes taking the Easy Train feel remarkable. Rides that detour at “Get Your Life Together” and “How to Adult” Avenue. I don’t want you not to like me just because I am not “as nice” as the Easy Train- after all, he doesn’t have the life experience I do. I know I kind of stink, and I know the seats are sticky sometimes, but I have so many lessons to teach you. So please, next time you’re riding the good ole Struggle Bus, try to be appreciative of the things you do like, or think about how everyone has a turn on the Bus. It shouldn’t be viewed as a bad thing, but just another learning experience, a part of life.

Love always,

Struggle Bus.

Adultish’s Crash Course in Budgeting- Dave Ramsey Style

This blog is brought to you in part by divorce, learning to survive your twenties and the inevitable mental breakdown.

I “grew up” really fast. I would say my childhood was completed by the time of 8, and then it was all about responsibility. I always had a really good cushion in life though when it came to my living situation. When I moved out I went to live with my aunt and uncle, rent free. Then I moved in with my then-boyfriend-now-ex-husband, rent free. But when I got divorced it was a whole new world of rent, car insurance, and meals for one. WHAT IS LIFE. Who knows, but these are my tips along the way.

Budget, budget, and budget again. I know a lot of concern comes from when we feel the budget we just implemented doesn’t work after a few weeks- that’s because a budget should be ever evolving. The moment there is a $5 discrepancy, or you had an emergency expense come up- it’s time for a new budget.

Along with budgeting is automatic bill pay. Be it scheduling a check to go out a few days prior to when rent is due, or signing up for automatic payment with Sprint for your phone bill.

Don’t utilize all of your available credit. For instance, if you have a credit card and the limit is $500 a month, do not put $500 on it even if you’re paying it off. Your credit score is based on the amount of credit you’re using paired with the amount of remaining credit. If you utilize all of your available credit you are “maxing out”, even if you pay off or not.

Shop around. Amazon is really tempting but the dollar store and Walmart are usually cheaper- and no need to wait for it to ship.

Also with Amazon, use your shopping cart for thinking. If you REALLY want a new car stereo- add it in your cart and let it be. One of three things will happen. One- you will decide against it. Two- it will go on sale and you will buy it. Three- you will buy it after waiting and know your decision was justified. 2/3 involve saving money.

Your health is really important. I am really NOT  the most reliable source for healthy eating as my diet is mainly coffee and leftovers- but small simple changes make a huge impact. Drink all the coffee you want- but flush it out with water. Eat (at least) three meals a day. Make at least one high in protein, one high in veggies/ vitamins/ minerals, and another just make it delicious! Meal prep and save your life. (nobutseriously) know what you like, buy it and make it. You won’t go out to eat as much, and you’ll actually eat!

Challenge yourself to 30 days of no spending. This is easiest at the beginning of a month. Pay your rent, insurance, gas- all the necessities. Buy groceries that you NEED to make the meals you will EAT. And *do not spend another penny* this is when the amazon cart trick is helpful, same with meal planning.

Look up anything and everything by Dave Ramsey. Figure out how to debt snowball- GET OUT OF DEBT. This has got to be the biggest thing ever. Once you pay off your debts you will have so much additional money left over each month- it’s almost like a second job.

Build your savings. Start with saving $1,000 and DO NOT TOUCH IT. This comes in handy when you do have automatic bill pay but not enough money in your checking’s. (Sidenote: make sure you bank doesn’t penalize you if they have to take out of your savings)

 

Finally- realize that all of these things combined help you reach your end goal in life- financial freedom… oh, and being an adult/ having your shit together.

GYST DAY

I’ve spoken before about GYST days and how I value them. Sundays are my coveted days for Gyst-ing I like to get as much done as possible so that I can try and relax during the week (or, if you’re keeping up with my life; in case I get a deadly head cold and sleep for 48 hours).

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A made bed is now a rule for me, because if I don’t make my bed I tend to crawl back into it for “just 5 more minutes”. Most Sundays I have to calculate my priorities, cleaning/ chores or homework. This Sunday I did my chores first because I was totally  putting off homework. #Whoops

I deeply needed to organize all of my files, bills, letters, divorce crap- so I got out my trusty label maker and labeled a file folder/pendaflex thing and got to work. I really didn’t like the idea of all my bills and important documents being in a million places, so organizing them like this was awesome! Now if I need anything I know exactly where it is, and it takes a second to grab. And of course in the event of a fire/ tsunami/ SoCal-Natural-Disaster we might have, I will be prepared! IMG_4915

Around 10 I practically forced myself to sit down and get some homework done. I wouldn’t say that my classes are hard (excluding one that I am in right now where i’m 98% sure my professor is trying to kill me). However, it takes such self discipline to sit down for hours and devote your time to homework. Nevertheless I do it- even if I seriously don’t want to.

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At some point in the day I dusted the house, did some laundry, cleaned my bathroom… and then the fun part of GYST day…

PEDICURE TIME! IMG_4989

Now of course this is not an every week thing for two reasons. 1- I hate people touching my feet and it took an unbelievable amount of will power not to kick this lady in the face. So ticklish it’s agony. (But I have cute toes now!) And 2- I am not rich by ANY means, and this is definitely an unnecessary expense.

All in all this was a pretty typical/ normal GYST day for me. Sometimes I do more, sometimes less- but the point of GYST-ing is to literally Get Your Shit Together. Homework and cleaning are always a priority, as is some sort of hair mask (I saved you guys from the picture, you are welcome), and on occasion I shave my legs.

Only occasionally- winter is coming. 🙂

#HandleIt

One of the most profound things I have learned in life is that you just have to to #handleit.

Is the sink over flowing with dishes and are you out of clean underwear? Handle it.

Homework due in 45 minutes, you just burnt your dinner and your hair has reached the limit of dry shampoo intake…. #handleit. impossoble things

There are so many things that I don’t want to do. For instance, I don’t want to call the lawyer about my divorce on my lunch break; but I have to. I don’t want to come home and do homework when I am dead-dog-exhausted; but I have to. I don’t want to look at my bank account, or set up an automatic savings plan, devote an entire day to laundry and meal prep; but I have to.

Being adult-ish means we have to do stuff we don’t like. We have to put our big girl (or boy, no judging) panties on and get shit done!

Because if not we would all be naked on the couch eating cheeto puffs and bon bons…

 

Let that sink in…

cheeto puff