Where is My Life Going?

Right now I’m at what you would call a crossroads in my life. And by crossroads I mean I have about 20 different directions to choose from and I’m not sure what the right one is. I feel sort of lost. Almost all of the things that I previously counted as constant no longer are, and things that I once looked forward to are now lost by the wayside.

I had all of these expectations for my life when I graduated high school. I would go off to college, and have this amazing time with great friends and join all sorts of clubs and graduate with my teaching certificate as well as a BA in English Literature. Then I would find a job and start my life and somewhere along the way fall in love.

Queue life changing event: DEPRESSION!

Pretty much all of those plans got derailed. I fell into a very dark place and became so unhappy that I thought I would never be happy again. And it lasted for months. And it was not fun. At some point around the beginning of my Sophomore year at NMSU I began to realize that I wasn’t happy. That I probably hadn’t been happy for a while. All of this time I had been doing what was expected of me, but that wasn’t really what I wanted. Because it was expected of me though, I kept going until it broke something inside of me, and I understood that I could no longer be in that place, taking those classes, and living that life without being mildly unhappy and unsure for the rest of my life.

The one thing that pulled me out of it was my Yeti. (Vlog Brothers – go watch their videos on YouTube. The Yeti reference will then make sense, and they are full of awesomeness.) The Yeti told me that he loved me no matter what, that he would be there to support my decisions and help me figure out what I wanted to do with my life. That we would figure our lives out together, and everything would be o.k..

For now I am happy with my life. I go to work, I hang out with my roommates and their friends on occasion, and I write. I have realized that the plan that has been set forth by society in regards for how my life is or was supposed to go is irrelevant. It is my plan that matters. And while it isn’t fully formed yet when I do pick a direction it will be the one that is right for me, not one that someone else has decided for me. If someone doesn’t like that then they can shove off.

In parting my lovelies, remember that this is your life to live, so live it how you want to, in any way that makes you happy. Except for skydiving. Don’t go skydiving.  Jumping out of a perfectly good plane is never ever under any circumstances acceptable.

Not Everything is as Safe as it Seems

So recently my apartment got broken into. It wasn’t a good feeling to come back and find the door wide open while no one was home and to realize that treasured items and important things might be gone. Especially when I triple check that I lock the door every time I leave. I am paranoid about making sure that doors are locked.

I never expected this to happen in this apartment complex. We live above a Sheriff and at least 3 other cops live on this end of my complex. The complex is quiet, I know all of my neighbors very well, and I have never felt unsafe walking around the complex at night. It was entirely shocking to realize that someone had had the balls to break into my apartment.

In the end there wasn’t a whole lot missing and it turns out that it was more of a personal attack than just a straight up robbery. My laptop and jewelry and everything was safe. My roommate’s technology on the other hand was not. To preface this he is a techie. Three of the four items that were missing from the apartment were his. His tablet, his notebook laptop, and his speaker set. All things that he would miss immediately but not overly expensive when you consider everything else that was left behind ( an x box 360, a PS3, 2 desktop computers, portable gaming systems, a big-is tv and $160 cash that was left directly underneath the tablet that was stolen as well as all of the awesome artwork on the walls). The missing items were things that were technically vital to his every day life because of how much he used them. 

My cat was missing. He was an indoor/outdoor cat who could have easily found his way back had he simply bolted out the door. I have checked with the neighbors and they have seen nothing. I have checked with the pound and they haven’t picked him up. He is no where to be found.

This leads my roommate and I to one conclusion. We were robbed by someone who knew us well and who wanted to get back at us for some imagined slight. Who also had a habit of cat jacking. To make a long story short, we had another roommate who had resorted to hooking to pay the bills and got very mad at us when we wouldn’t turn her room over to her friend so that she would have somewhere to stay on the weekends when she was in town. We had no desire to have her here bringing in strange men constantly and not respecting the boundaries that we had asked her to abide by i.e. please don’t smoke weed in the apartment since we live above a cop and please only allow people you absolutely trust to come hang out. (Moving into the apartment the only rule was ‘Don’t be a dick.’ Not exactly a hard rule to follow.) She notoriously ignored our requests which is why we refused to give her room over to her friend when she moved out. We no longer wanted her to be here once she was gone.

We can only assume that based on how personal this was that she was the one who took David’s things and my cat. She is the only one who knows both of us well enough to decide what would get to us the most. And she succeeded. I just want my cat back. I doubt that is going to happen though. It honestly wouldn’t surprise me if she had killed him to make sure he could never come back.

So kiddies please remember to lock your doors and windows and live carefully. I’m not saying don’t live at all, just be aware of your surroundings. If my apartment, as safe as it appeared to be can be broken into then so can yours. Not everything is as safe as it seems.

My Family: The Great Debaters of Our Time

One thing that I really wasn’t expecting about growing up was suddenly being launched into my family’s political world. To put it mildly they are conservative to an extreme. It was rather shocking, both to myself and likely to them when it became glaringly apparent that my views were not the same as theirs. I’m not sure exactly where I began to deviate from their views but I do remember the moment that it became glaringly apparent that I was different. 

It was at some point just before the presidential elections of 2012 that most of my dad’s side of the family had gathered in my small home town of Los Lunas, NM (Go Tigers!) for some family function or another. To narrow it down a little it was shortly after Romney’s ‘binder full of women’ misstep. My cousin and I had been watching tv in the living room when suddenly we were called in to the kitchen to join what I now suspect to be a long standing tradition: the Powers’ family political debate. 

We were each asked in turn who we would vote for (in my cousin’s case in the event that she were old enough to vote, she was 17 at the time) and why. My cousin, of course spouted the greatness of Romney and how Obama needed to be ousted. Not realizing that only one other family member of mine would (half way) agree with me, I said that neither was a good option and that if I had my way Gary Johnson would be our next president. Obama lacked the necessary economic policies, social graces, and overall leadership qualities to continue to run our country but Romney was far too focused on the social issues that could greatly impact not only my access to healthcare and birth control, but also several of my friends who belong to the GLBTQ community for my taste. 

While they “respected my opinion” they then proceeded to spend the next twenty minutes telling me why I was wrong and how I needed to vote for Romney since voting for Johnson would only increase the margin that Obama might win by.

Moreover, the raging homophobia that I experienced at that table was shocking. Only my aunt stood by me in that she thought that some of what Romney wanted to do was wrong regarding his social policies, but that all of the other issues greatly outweighed the downsides of his stance on women’s health and gay rights. I’m not naive. I could see where they were coming from. But they outright trashed homosexuals spouting nonsense about how it was unnatural and that nurturers had somehow failed these people, and that we needed to go back to being a Christian country like God intended. Then there were the Bible verses about how wrong it all was. My grandmother had the gall to make a comment about how the US would become the next Sodom if we didn’t stop all of this now. My retort to this was that there were many sins of Sodom, not just homosexuality. I embarrassed all of them when I made the comment that if any of them had ever given or received oral sex then they were guilty of the sins of Sodom as well, among other things. They continued to tout Bible verses at me until I was blue in the face from holding my tongue.

For all I know the overall theme of the Bible, that being God sent His son to save us, is completely correct. But it was written by man, meaning that it is incorrect. Case in point, Job 39: 9-12 claims that unicorns exist and Leviticus 11: 3-6 claims that rabbits chew their own cud. Last time I checked rabbits don’t do that which to me means that someone made it up or someone translated these passages very poorly. If these small errors made it through imagine what kind of larger errors could have been made.

I stood completely apart from my family in this, and while I was proud of myself for somehow having formed these opinions regardless of their bias, it was clear that they did not feel the same way. I was wrong, and needed to be corrected. I still need to be corrected in their minds because I believe the following:

  • Gay marriage- I am all for it. These people love and are committed to each other and therefor have every right to all of the rights that I as a straight person enjoy.
  • Birth Control/ Abortion- My vajayjay is none of your business, and yours is none of mine. Let’s keep it that way.
  • Separation of Church and State- Either they are separate or they aren’t. If you don’t want the state meddling in the church then for the sake of people who practice other religions or don’t practice at all the church cannot be a deciding factor within the state.

The list inevitably goes on, but I shall leave it at that. No one wants to hear a full on political rant and believe me I can cook one up. So with that parting statement my lovelies I hope you are having a great day and remember to go forth and make your own decisions, not the decisions that your family would have you make.

Boys, Men, and Creepers

On any given day in my astoundingly adult-like life, I come across several people of the male gender. Many of them ignore me, and I am fine with that, they go about their day and I go about mine and neither of us cares. 

Then we get to the boys/men category. I define boys, by the way, as guys who are younger than twenty and men as those who are older than twenty. I know this leaves some room for interpretation based on character, etc. but that is just the way that I have chosen to define this issue in my mind. They usually do nice things like hold open a door or smile at me or we make idle chit chat for all of ten seconds and then we go about our days. Again, that is just fine. 

Creepers are another story entirely. It doesn’t matter to me how old they are. They are creepy. They leer, they say or do unwanted suggestive things, they attempt to touch me. Not ok. 

Within the last twenty four hours I have experienced both ends of this spectrum. The most recent was three hours ago. I had stopped at a gas station to purchase gas (duh) and some snackage. As I was entering the building, a young guy held the door open for me (I couldn’t quite tell how old he was), smiled, told me I looked pretty, and then left. That was it. That was also the perfect example of how to pay a stranger a compliment. I stopped him, gave him a high five, and told him thank you for not being a creeper. He looked confused, but that was fun for me so I just laughed and we went about our lives.

The other example happened last night. I was leaving Walgreens with my roommate and we passed a guy sitting in his car. He gave me a once over which I could have ignored had he not proceeded to make the ‘I want to eat you out’ motion with his tongue and stare at me in a very disturbing manner. How anyone could think that behavior is either acceptable or desired is beyond me. I stifled the desire to flip him off and continued on with my life.

The moral of the story here, boys and girls, is be polite. That’s all it takes. It isn’t your job to go about your life trying to make everyone comfortable but don’t go out of your way to make people uncomfortable either.

Get a “Real Job”

Three years ago, when I moved to lovely Las Cruces, NM, I made my debut into the world of food service. It was fast paced and exciting and there was never a dull moment. I fell in love with it so to speak. As strange as it sounds, I enjoy bringing people food and making their time at the restaurant where I work enjoyable.

That being said, it isn’t always easy work. I lift trays that would make an OSHA representative keel over from shock. I have had to clean up vomit before, and in the state of New Mexico the labor laws regarding restaurant workers are garbage so I can be forced to work 12 hours straight without a break. On occasion that includes bathroom breaks. Oh, and the minimum wage for servers isn’t $7.50/hr, but $2.13/hr.

Then there are the guests. I’d say a good 75% of guests are perfectly nice. Some of them may run me around, asking for something new every time i drop something else off as opposed to just asking for everything all at once. Quite a few of them are of the mind set that $5 is a perfectly acceptable tip no matter what the bill total is. I wouldn’t really complain about that because hey, it’s $5 that I didn’t have before, were it not for the fact that I get taxed on the total of the bill regardless of what the tip actually was. I won’t say much about the other 25% other than they seem to think that the fact I wear a name tag makes me their slave and they can be as rude to me as they want too just because believe me to be less intelligent than they are.

This brings me to the ‘get a real job’ argument. I have heard this time and again from people in various places in life, and it grinds my gears every time. What exactly do they think a ‘real job’ is? One where I sit behind a desk all day? Or perhaps where I have to dress formally and don’t get to express my personality so much? I’m sorry, I am gainfully employed. I pay taxes. I contribute to society based on these facts. I make real money to pay my real bills and buy real food and any other real thing that I might want or need. My job is no less real than yours, and I am sure that I put up with more abuse of one form on another on any given day than a substantial part of society does in a week, or even a month. I don’t delude myself, I know that there are jobs far more trying than mine out there, but I don’t belittle people who answer phones or file papers all day and I expect the same courtesy in return.

That being said, tip your waiters and waitresses. They’re tired, they’re sore and if they seem jittery or rushed it is probably because they haven’t had a chance to go to the bathroom for 6 hours.

Go forth, my minions, and have a wonderful day.

You Need to Grow Up!

I hate that phrase. From the time I started high school to this very day it is something that my mom likes to nag me about. Not so daunting until you realize that I turn 21 next week, meaning this phrase has been lobbed at me from various sources for almost seven years. I don’t quite get it though. I pay my bills (usually on time) and have not one but 2 jobs, and I still need to “grow up.” Why? Because I like anime and I think bow ties are cool and I still fangirl over the silliest of things? To quote The Doctor, ” there is no point in growing up if you can’t be childish sometimes.”