untitled.

How do I get excited about the future again? Sometimes, I still feel like I took the easy way out in school…just to get by. It’s not even a field I’m interested in anymore. It is now August and I’m continuing to lose hope. I want to just give up completely. But that’s not an option.

As much as I wish I could get those two years back and do something useful with them, I cannot. I never thought I’d wind up here. I always thought I’d be successful…at least by now. But I’m a detriment to my own self. It’s true when they say you are your own worst enemy.

I’m sorry if it seems like I’ve been complaining a lot lately. That’s not my intention. But I need somewhere to let out what I’m feeling…what I’m thinking. These posts have become a stream of consciousness. And while it does help, it doesn’t solve my problem. Where do I go from here? How do I build my confidence? How do I shake off all these insecurities I have. After all, those are the things that are holding me back. I’m a prisoner of my own mind. And that’s a dangerous place to be.

I don’t want to continue burdening my family. I don’t want to continue being a disappointment. I don’t want to keep feeling like a failure. So what do I do?

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when one door closes.

As much as I wanted that job, I was fortunate to have been presented with a potential opportunity. One of my good friends from college recently started his own production company and wants me to be involved. Unfortunately, because they’re just starting, I would be working for free. Right now, my main priority is finding a job that pays, but I’m excited to be on board and help them out. This could turn into something great and I know it will. The two guys running this company are some of the smartest, most creative people I know. They’re passionate and committed to their work and I am honored that they asked me to be a part of this. Plus, it’s also very cool to see something from the very beginning and watch it grow over time.

Even though this isn’t a paying job, there are still many benefits to it. First, I’m in the field I’m most comfortable with, which is production. Looking for work in this industry has been very difficult for me and my internships have led to nothing. But I haven’t given up just yet. Second, I’m working with people I already know and trust, who have my best interests at heart. I know they won’t take advantage of me or anything like that. Third, it’s giving me experience with managing multiple projects at once, while also giving me the opportunity to expand my knowledge in digital media, which is kind of the direction I’m leaning towards at the moment.

There’s still a lot in the air at the moment, but like I said, I think this will lead to great things. I am hoping I will have a full time job by the end of this month. I’m still sticking with my October deadline, but the sooner, the better.

It’s been a frustrating couple of years trying to figure everything out and just feeling so lost. A part of me feels like I’m making this more difficult than it should be, but then the other half of me just doesn’t know what to do. Yes, the future freaks me out and I wish there was some way I could guarantee that I will be okay. But I can only live for now and do everything I can to ensure I will be okay. I know things have a way of working themselves out, and I feel like it’s happening right now. Everything happens for a reason and I think I need to have some faith and trust that this is all meant to be a part of my journey.

beautifuldarkmystery

misconceptions.

You don’t drink alcohol, so you must be boring and don’t know how to have fun.
You don’t smoke or do drugs, so you must think you’re better than everyone.
You don’t talk much, so you must be arrogant.

We’ve all been there before. Maybe it was a bad first impression. Maybe it was one bad choice. No matter what we’ve said or done, I’ll bet at one point in time (at the very least), we’ve been judged. Some people don’t care and are completely comfortable with being their complete selves. On the other hand, others like myself take things to heart a little more.

I don’t drink alcohol, but that doesn’t mean I’ve never tried it before. I choose not to drink primarily for health reasons. I am also highly sensitive to alcohol so even if I have a little bit, I start to feel dizzy, my head hurts, and I don’t feel well. Also, I just can’t acquire the taste. But that doesn’t necessarily mean I don’t know how to have fun and it doesn’t mean I judge people who DO drink! My friends drink all the time but that doesn’t change my perception of them. They’re responsible when they do drink and if any of them go past their limits, I’m happy to drive them home if it means they get there safely. Being around alcohol does not make me feel uncomfortable. Yes, sure…sometimes being the only one at the party who doesn’t drink makes it a little weird for me, but I always try to find a way to have fun regardless of the situation.

I have never experimented with a drug or ever smoked, but that doesn’t mean I think I’m better than everyone else. Just because I may be straight-edge doesn’t mean that I should be defined by that label. We all have the freedom of choice. I choose not to do drugs or smoke because it’s just my personal preference and that’s it. But never once, have I ever thought I was better than anyone else because of the choices I made.

I’m a very quiet person. Until you get to know me, it’s difficult to pull me out of my shell. I’ve asked my friends what their first impression of me was and they all said I came across as either arrogant or mean/rude. I may not talk a lot, but it doesn’t mean I have anything to say. The truth is that I struggle in social situations. I DO have lots to say, but I can’t get myself to say it. I’m an observer. I prefer watching people interact with each other than engage, which is something I’m trying hard to work on. This is probably the misconception about myself that gets to me the most because what I display on the outside is completely different from the person inside. When I’m with my close friends, I can be goofy, I can be witty, I can be the one who makes people laugh…but if you’re an acquaintance or I just met you, you’d never know that.

The point I’m trying to get at is that you should never judge a book by its cover. Get to know the person first. In one of my classes in college, I met this one girl and right off the bat, I didn’t like her. The worst part was that I couldn’t exactly pinpoint what it was that annoyed me so much. I never thought we would be friends. But as I got to know her, my perception of her began to change. By our senior year, we became pretty good friends!

One summer, a group of my friends from college came down to visit me right after I moved. There was an event in Los Angeles we were attending. During the second night of the event, there was an after party at this place called Jillian’s. I think this was the first time my friends really truly saw me come out of my shell. Typically in social settings, I like to blend in with everyone else and people usually forget I’m even there. But that night, for whatever reason, it was like I flipped this switch and I became this extremely outgoing person (and that was all without a drop of alcohol in my system). I was talking to people I had just met like I had known them for years. It was a completely different side of me. I have no idea what got into me, but all I remember is that I couldn’t remember the last time I had that much fun. Instead of being my usual uptight self, I let loose a little and had some fun.

My quietness will always be a part of my innate personality and it’s always going to be a part of who I am. But I think the more I challenge myself to be a little more outgoing and push myself outside of my comfort zone, I think it could benefit me in the long run. I will never do it to please people. I’ll never do it to win the acceptance of others in social settings. When you want change, you should do it because it’s what you want, not at the expense of others’ wants. For all my quiet/shy people out there wanting to become a little more outgoing, I encourage you to push yourself. Something I constantly have to remind myself is that people are not paying as close attention to what I say and do as much as I think they are. In psychology, this is called the spotlight effect. The spotlight effect is a phenomenon in which people tend to believe they are noticed more than they really are.

The last thing I have to say about this is, don’t ever let people’s misconceptions about you define your life. Do you and live your life. If people don’t have anything nice to say, pay no attention to them. This is your journey and do what makes you happy.

beautifuldarkmystery

rejection.

Last month, I interviewed with a company I really wanted to work for. At the time, she said there may be a position opening up in July. When July came around, I sent her a quick followup e-mail just to check in and see if it ever opened up, but I never heard from her.

I decided to try and reach out to her one last time so I sent another e-mail and she quickly responded and told me that there weren’t any positions open at the moment but that they would keep me in mind for the future.

This sucks. It’s been a long time since I’ve wanted something this badly and to be “let down” in the end hurts. But I won’t let it get me down. I firmly believe that things do happen for a reason. Oddly enough, earlier today, I was on a video conference with a good friend of mine. He just started a production company and wants me to help him. I always say when one door closes, another one opens….right? This could potentially lead to something, and if not, at the very least give me experience.

No one likes rejection and some people like myself even fear it. But it’s a part of life and unfortunately, there will be many more times I will be told “no” before I’m told “yes”. The most important thing to do is not allow myself to feel defeated by every “no”. I’d like to think there’s a plan for me and I’ll end up where I’m supposed to be, but figuring that out is the frustrating part. I don’t even know where to look and every job application I’ve sent I haven’t heard back from. As hopeless as the situation seems, I know that the only way I’ll be unsuccessful is if I stop trying.

One day, I want to be able to look back at these struggles and frustrations and say that it was all worth it. All the stress and anxiety….all of it. I’ve set a goal for myself to have a full time job by October. I’m beginning to think that aiming for this company was a bit ambitious, but I wouldn’t have known if I didn’t try, so that’s what I’m trying to focus on. It’s not about how many times you fall, it’s about how many times you get back up.

beautifuldarkmystery

facebook friends.

Have you ever gone to your Facebook page and noticed your number of friends has changed? I don’t have many Facebook friends so it’s very noticeable when someone un-friends me. I just checked today and saw that I lost two people, and yes, I just looked through my entire friends list to see if I could figure out who they were…but I couldn’t. I don’t know why it bothers me because it really shouldn’t.

We live in a weird generation where social media keeps us all connected. We post everything from what we had for lunch to that vacation in Maui. Social media provides instant gratification in today’s fast-paced environment. You may not talk to someone every single day, but you can check their Facebook feed to see what they’ve been up to. In an earlier post, I mentioned that my ex recently friended me on Facebook again after a year of not speaking to each other. The weird thing about it though is that once added me, that was kind of it. We don’t really talk anymore and we don’t hang out or keep in touch. Does he just want to keep tabs on me without having to ask me personally? Who knows…

Honestly, I used to be one of those people who cared about how many friends I had on MySpace/Facebook. I thought, the higher the number, the better. But that’s not the case. I’m not the most outgoing or popular person, and that’s okay!! My numbers don’t define my worth.

A couple of years ago, I went through my friends list on Facebook and deleted people I didn’t really talk to anymore or haven’t kept in touch with. Sometimes, I found myself in those awkward situations where I would delete people and then they would send me another friend request and message me asking why we weren’t friends. So, I stopped doing that.

There was an instance where I removed this girl from my friends list simply because we weren’t that close and were more like acquaintances. Somehow she found out I had deleted her, so she then decided to send me a very angry message basically saying how we were no longer friends and she told me to never contact her for anything. She even went to the extent of blocking me. I never intended to hurt her feelings and I didn’t know she was going to take it so personally, but I felt really bad.

Why it bothers me when someone un-friends me, I don’t think I’ll ever know. But I’m not going to lose sleep over it. This is all part of life. We meet people, they stick around for a little while, and then they’re gone. When they leave, new people enter the picture and the cycle starts all over again. It doesn’t matter if you have 100 friends or 1,000 friends. A number does not define your worth.

beautifuldarkmystery

value in friendships.

 

I had a conversation about this with a good friend not too long ago and he told me how he sometimes gets paranoid over how he thinks certain friends value him. For example, with some people, he feels like he’s the one who puts more effort into the friendships, or he’s the one always reaching out. It makes him question whether some people really want to be friends or not. I can totally relate to him because I’ve found myself in that situation many times.

I’ll be honest, from the time I was a kid and all throughout high school, I believed in having one best friend. And when it wasn’t reciprocated, I would always get jealous. As I got older, however, I began to realize that just because someone may not like me as much as I like them, it doesn’t mean they value me any less. Some people are very vocal about the “best friend” label, while with some, it’s more like an unspoken understanding.

There’s no harm in evaluating your friendships every once in a while, especially if you’re beginning to notice drastic changes in the dynamic. If you feel like you’re beginning to question your friendships, consider this:

  1. Pull back. If you feel like you’re the one one initiating contact, pull back and see if the other person initiates contact first. If they don’t, then you’ll kind of know where you stand. As life goes on, we all become busier and priorities will change, but if you’re important to someone, they’ll always find a way. This leads me to my second tip.
  2. last resort. I had a friend from home who moved closer to me for work. He was one of my good friends in college, but as soon as he moved, he made little to no effort to see me. It suddenly became all about his new friends and he only contacted me as a last resort. Don’t get me wrong though. I was happy he was meeting new people and making new friends, but he would start contacting me at the very last minute, which I didn’t like. There is absolutely nothing wrong with spontaneity. I realize that sometimes it’s easier to just do things on the fly. But for me personally, I like finding a time that’s convenient for both of us, even if it means having to wait a couple of weeks.
  3. finding a way or making an excuse. Do they find a way to hang out with you and see you, or are they constantly making excuses as to why they can’t get together with you? If you find yourself in the latter category, you might want to re-evaluate the friendship. That’s not to say you have to stop being friends with the person all together, but don’t put them so high on your priority list if they’re not going to treat you the same way. I’ll be honest and say I’ve been on both ends of this. I’ve been the one who’s reached out to people with no luck, but I’ve also been the person making the excuses because I don’t want to hang out. It’s a part of life. At one point or another, we’ve ALL been on the giving/receiving end of this circumstance. If you feel like someone’s always making some sort of excuse not to hang out, maybe it’s time to stop making attempts.

Friends will come and go. Always trust your gut, but also pay attention to their behavior. It’s not something you have to do every single day, but definitely pay attention to how they treat you. You may need to cut some strings, and that’s perfectly fine! It’s important to surround yourself with people that lift you up and get just as excited to see you as you are to see them!

beautifuldarkmystery

different this time.

I’m one of those people that tend to be very introspective and I can spend hours analyzing and dissecting my thoughts and feelings. It’s a blessing and a curse, in my opinion.

A couple of posts ago, I mentioned that I reconnected with an old friend who also happens to be an ex. I feel like I’ve explained our story/situation many times in previous posts, so I’ll spare you the pain. In short, we reconnected for the first time after not seeing or speaking to each other in nearly a year.

When we initially reconnected, I told him that I was thinking about asking if he wanted too hang out, but wasn’t sure how he would feel about it given our circumstances. He said he would be completely down, but that I would have to wait a couple of weeks because he was short on money. So I told him to let me know.

One week goes by, then two. Here I am again, waiting like an idiot for a message I’m never going to get. Pretty soon, nearly a whole month goes by and by this point, I just assume he doesn’t want to hang out. I see multiple check-ins on Facebook so I know he’s going out with friends and clearly has the money to do so. At this point, I was just going to let it go. It wasn’t worth getting into an argument. We’re not even really friends anymore, so what does it matter, right?

Well, one night,  I was sitting at my computer and something compelled me to go on Facebook and send a thoughtful message to each of my closest friends. I truly believe it was because just a couple of weeks earlier, Christina Grimmie was shot to death and then there was the Pulse shooting. Most of the victims were around my age and it it really affected me…that their lives were taken away in an instant, just like that. I know I shouldn’t need a reason to do this, but life is just too short and precious. I like to constantly remind my friends how much they mean to me and how important they are to me.

So I began sending out one message at a time. I had no problems writing from the heart and clicking that send button. But then, I got to him…as I sat there and contemplated whether I should send a message, the better half of me won and I basically told myself, it doesn’t matter what’s happened between us. If he meant anything to me, I would write him a message. It didn’t matter if he felt the same way or not. It didn’t matter that I had a fear of being rejected once again, even though there wasn’t any reason for me to feel any sort of rejection.

Within a few minutes, he messaged me back and said it was sweet. He then apologized for not getting back to me about lunch and I said it was fine. Then he asked me if I was available on Tuesday and I said yes and he said we’ll go to lunch then. Now I just felt awkward, because if I had never sent that message, he wouldn’t have brought it up. I got the feeling that he felt obligated to make plans with me, which didn’t make me feel all that great, but I wasn’t going to argue. I really had nothing to lose at this point.

Before I know it, Tuesday rolls around and I am having so many mixed feelings. I fixed my hair and did my makeup without going too over the top. I had to consciously remind myself that I wasn’t going to try and impress him. I didn’t even dress up either. I was pretty casual. My biggest fear about going into this whole thing was that the moment I saw him, all those feelings would come flooding back and I would be back to where I started. The reason why I cut him out of my life was because I needed to move on, and as long as he was still in the picture, that was never going to happen. My feelings were too strong. So before I left, I told myself to be strong and not take everything he says with a grain of salt. I anticipated it was going to be really awkward anyway, so I just told myself to do my best.

When I saw him for the first time, it was a little weird at first, just because it’d been nearly a whole year since we hung out just the two of us. He gave me a hug and I said it was good to see him. And then the moment I was waiting for never happened. I felt nothing. No butterflies (not even from nerves, I was pretty calm surprisingly), all those feelings he once gave me when we were together, gone.

As we started to talk more, it became a little more comfortable like old times, but I still felt like I was the one initiating everything. If I didn’t, we would have been sitting there in complete silence. Honestly, at one point, I was thinking to myself that I wanted to get out of there because it was just too weird. A part of me wishes I would have been more upfront with him, cut the chitter chatter, and asked what his deal was. But, of course, being the person I am, I wasn’t going to be confrontational.

When lunch was over and we were walking to our cars, I told him that if he ever wanted to hang out, just let me know. I already know it’s not going to happen but I at least made the offer. My problem has been that I’m too nice. I let people take advantage of me. I make myself available to the others at their convenience when it’s not reciprocated. I was relieved it was over, but was still left with unanswered questions.

That night, I came across an old text he sent me years ago. It said, “Believe me when I say this. Unless you tell me to stop, I will always try to be a part of your life.” At the end of the day, it’s not my job to get all these questions I have answered. The truth is that I won’t know the answer to everything. Sometimes, I just have to let things be and take them for what they are. I’ll never know the real reason he wanted to reconnect. Maybe he still wants to be friends. Maybe he “just wants to keep tabs on me” without having to directly ask me. Or maybe he wants to try and rekindle our friendship/relationship again (although, that’s a bit of a stretch and highly unlikely). Whatever the reason, I’m just glad that we’re at a point where there are no residual feelings of anger or resentment towards each other. We both learned a lot from this, but if we can somehow be in each other’s lives going forward without feelings getting in the way, I am totally fine with that.

The most important thing is that I stayed strong and today was the day I realized that this situation no longer had control over me. I can finally rid myself of these demons and move on once and for all. I’m glad I did this because if I didn’t get all my questions answered, I still got closure. I know he’s going to find someone who will make him happy and that relationship will work in all the ways we didn’t. The same goes for me. I believe there’s someone out there who’d love what I have to offer. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

beautifuldarkmystery