Tag Archives: Procrastination

I am not an adult. I am a lie.

Standard

0452f4a0-2d7d-0133-09c9-0e76e5725d9d

For some silly reason, I thought I’d have my life together by now. How hard could it be? However, the older I get, the more apparent it becomes that my life is a conglomeration of fragments held together with crusty masking tape. I am not an adult. I am a lie. I may do my own laundry and have my own bank account, but when it comes down to it, I’d much rather hide from life behind my stuffed animals and neglected dishes. And to think…people my age have families. With babies.

I’m lucky to have kept myself alive for this long. I couldn’t imagine being responsible for something that doesn’t respawn.

In honor of my last semester of undergrad starting today, I thought I would tell you a lovely story about how a senior in college can ruin absolutely everything by ignoring the problem.

SPOILER ALERT

Moral of the Story: Do NOT ignore the problem under any circumstances.

I don’t know if any of my readers are parents, but even if you’re not, imagine this: you get a bill in the mail for $16,000. Oh yes. I neglected to fill out a “randomized survey” that my school sent out. (I say it’s “randomized” because I got selected to fill it out every year. And every year, I made my mother handle it.) I’m a fairly organized person, so when I make a to-do list, I prioritize. Things related to school and work are always at the top. Little things like surveys are at the bottom. My to-do list remained packed full of school and work related items for most of the semester, so I didn’t even touch that survey until my mom called me with news about that little bill.

I forsook the natural order of my to-do list and decided to deal with the problem. One little survey. Easy. If I could hammer out an A-worthy 1200 word essay in less than 3 hours, I could complete a silly little survey. I took one look at it, saw the words “call the IRS” and decided to let my mother handle it. Again. That’s what parents are for after all. She handled the problem (as usual), and I thought that was that.

Until my mother received another bill.

Two threatening bills for $16,000. I had to do it. Not her. Me. Myself. I had to do the thing. I finally worked up the courage to put on my big-girl pants and made the phone call. I sat on that phone for hours trying to get information that didn’t even exist. HOURS. (Note: It was probably 30 minutes.) And then I spent the rest of the week running between the financial aid office and my adviser’s office in tears because I knew my mother would kill me for putting this off. (I should probably add that I put this survey off for at least four months. You might say that I’m a PROcrastinator.)

This whole mess climaxed into a messy explosion of, “I can’t adult!” in one of my meetings with my adviser. How in the world was I supposed to balance this $16,000 mistake with my schoolwork, jobs, and other responsibilities? I wanted to disappear under my flannel unicorn sheets and never come out.

In the end, I resolved my $16,000 mistake. I actually don’t remember how I did it. Part of me wants to believe that the financial aid office became so fed up with me that they decided to let it “disappear.” But there’s a slight chance I did something right.

I’m aware that this story makes me sound like a whiny brat and not a 21 year old college senior. (You’re probably thinking, “They let his girl into college?”) I should know how to do all of this by now. But hasn’t everyone had to learn a “how to adult” lesson the hard way? Suddenly, I turn 21 and taxes, full-time jobs, and pantsuits are a frightening yet boring reality. Real world problems are terrifying, but at least I know how to deal with one of them now.

NOTE: Next week is recruitment week for the sororities at my school. As such, all ladies in a sorority are required to deactivate social media. (There are a lot of rules that go along with recruitment.) To stay out of trouble, I will not be posting next Tuesday. Hopefully you will see me on Friday however!

Advertisements

Meet the Wanderer: Chapter 1

Standard

A resolution I have this year is to keep my blog on track by writing a few different series. Allow me to introduce the first.

Discovering Yourself as a Writer

I found the image linked above on one of my many Pinterest adventures which aren’t half as glorious as they sound. I like this set of prompts because they allow me to introduce myself in a series of stories. I hope answering a few of these questions makes me seem a bit more human. To most of you out there, I’m a wall of text behind a computer screen. I swear there’s a plucky young bespectacled ginger behind all these words!

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Branding: What single word describes your personality? How does it affect you as a writer? Are you whimsical, gregarious, or fierce?

You know what I’ve always hated? Word limitations. “This essay must be at least 1200 words” or “please don’t write more than 500 characters for this statement of purpose.” I know guidelines are important, but seriously…one little word to describe myself? I’m an incredibly diverse person. I’ll watch gory action films while hugging Percival (my purple unicorn pillow pet). I’ll go shopping…and then pop into the GameStop to see if Dragon Age or Assassin’s Creed is on sale. I’ll wear over-sized sweaters and slinky evening dresses in the same day!

However, recently I completed a job application for a program that allows me to teach English in Japan once I graduate from college. It has been my dream for several years now to teach in a foreign country, and I finally got the application in my hand. I filled almost all of it out in one day…except for the statement of purpose–the most important part. I didn’t write that part the next day either. Or the day after. Or the next week. You can see where this is going…

I waited until the night before I needed to mail it out to even start on it. I wrote a draft and thought I was done. But then I woke up the next day. Hated it. Trashed it. Panicked. Cried in my adviser’s office for about fifteen minutes. Finally, I proceeded to write a new statement and revise it about five times that day with the help of one of my English professors, a career counselor, and a pep-talk from my roommate.

I always say I’ll stop procrastinating, but I don’t. Why  wait? Because I hate writing about myself. (Funny…considering that this is a blog about…me. But I’m not trying to get a job or scholarship from you guys!) I’m always looking for a single word that makes me (of all the people in the world) stick out. There are hundreds of funny, creative, sarcastic, or cat-loving individuals. How can I describe myself in one word or even 500?

(Just so you know, I haven’t heard back from that job yet. They’ll be calling about in two weeks. Here’s praying.)

My writing is as diverse as my personality.

I can’t exactly describe myself as whimsical all the time. Sometimes I write incredibly…dark things. I also can’t describe myself as sarcastic. If I were witty and sarcastic all the time, my readers might not take me seriously or think that I’m not as believable as I should be. I certainly don’t want to become my own unreliable narrator. Saying I’m “creative” would be a cop-out. Writing, no matter what it is, requires a little bit of creativity.

You’re probably thinking…why not go with “diverse?” You just said it yourself about a hundred times, you silly goose!  Well…the answer to that is: even that word doesn’t seem to accurately describe myself or my writing the way I want it to. I don’t think I’ll ever be happy with a single word because I’m always going to be a huge combination of words. I’m not sure anyone out there would count awkward-imaginative-sparkle-tastic as a single word. Any takers? But if someone put a gun to my head and told me that I absolutely had to choose…

Experimental. I always try new things, go on adventures, and jump into the middle of battles. My writing is still experimental. I want to try new forms, new ways of characterization, new plot devices. I want to take concepts that have been done and redo them. My personality is constantly shifting, making room for a better balance of social awkwardness and professionalism. In a way, I’m still finding myself, and maybe I’ll never be that one word.

Or maybe I’m just over-complicating things!

What about you? What’s your “branding?”

30 Day Writing Challenge – Day 21

Standard

What three lessons do you want your children to learn from you?

Kids. Don’t I need a man to make those? Can I count my cats as children? Wait…never mind. I don’t want to even try to teach a cat something that doesn’t involve sleeping or eating.

But in all seriousness, I really hope my kids learn a lot. (And I really hope I can teach them everything.) I hope they learn to love culture and literature. I hope they learn to appreciate hard work and to follow their dreams…but let me see if I can narrow it down. My imaginary children don’t need to have too much pressure on them just yet.

1.) Learn what you can while you’re young.

There is a lot I wish I had stuck with. I wish I had learned a martial art or taken dance lessons. I wish I had pursued a second language and become bilingual before entering college. I wish I hadn’t quit piano or band. I wish I had gotten out and done more that I loved. Maybe it would have helped me later on. Even now, I find it difficult to stick with things and finish projects.

2.) Organize.
I procrastinate a lot. Kids. Don’t do it. I need to marry a man who doesn’t leave things until the last minute. My kids probably won’t learn this lesson from me. Trust me. I get the important things done, but sometimes I cut it very close.

3.) Learn to say no when you need to.

I’m a people pleaser. I wouldn’t wish that evil upon anyone. I wish I could learn to say no myself…