Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Month of Fantastic News

Lets see if I can even remember all of the good news that myself and friends have gotten since the beginning of December.

1. Not great but certainly optimistic news- My dad is going ahead with the back surgery for his bulging disk. Neurosurgeon says 1 day in the hospital and 3 weeks of recovery. Im very optimistic about this helping him not be in pain all the time- everyone I know who has had it/ known someone who has says its like a miracle.

2. My friend from work is pregnant! She's had a couple tough pregnancies (her girls were born at ~32 and 34 wks) and was worried about whether or not she'd be able to have another kid. She's only about 9 wks, but the Neonatologist says she's doing fantastic and baby's heart beat is very strong and she even has a 50% chance of having a full term pregnancy!

3. Im officially Catholic. I did my profession of faith this past weekend- on the feast of the Immaculate Conception too which was pretty cool since my boyfriend credits his prayers to the Virgin Mary for us meeting and for my eventual conversion. It was a nice little recitation confirming my faith, and the sweetest thing happened afterwards. There was a young woman who just happened to be in the church reading and praying. She took pictures for us and afterwards she asked me who I was because she said she wanted to pray for me. Very very sweet considering I have no idea who she is. PS- kneeling on marble sucks! But I love Father Thompson- he's a fantastic priest, very enthusiastic, funny guy too.

4. Yearly Bonus from work!! I Love my company. The company was just as profitable this past year as in the past and they will be making the max contribution to our retirement profit sharing plans too! Also, our yearly Christmas party was this past weekend. The boyfriend was here for it and I had so much fun with my friends from work! We do one of those white elephant gift exchanges where you can steal presents- and mine was awesome! A Beryllium Erbium glass! Im such a science nerd.

5. A friend of mine from college (who is also my boyfriend's brother) who's also a veteran was having trouble finding a job- and he finally found a great one doing contract intelligence consulting! He's pretty excited about it from what I hear, and is even looking forward to another year in Afghanistan. He's been a little all over the place in the last year or so, and I'm hoping this will help him get back on track.

6. Work is taking a very interesting turn. People on site still don't have the funding to pay for me to work for them. So my boss has taken the initiative to steal me away from them. So I started today working at the corporate office-- helping my boss (Our company CEO) response to the requests for information and proposals for our government contracts. Suddenly it seems I've made the jump onto the corporate ladder.

And Last But Not Least- THE BEST POSSIBLE NEWS!!!!

7. My Boyfriend got a new job!! He's moving home to VA!! A month from next tuesday Ill be flying out to Detroit for the last time in the foreseeable future to help him finish packing, and then we will be driving home. He's gonna be living in Richmond at least for awhile, but 110 miles is a heck of a lot better that 525. 
So Happy, So Excited! 

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Full Circle

I over analyze things.
I know I do it, Im OK with it- its something I've done for 28.5 years now so I doubt it going to change anytime soon even if I do know about it and try to make a conscience effort not to do so.
Yes I know this makes me into an overly-emotional female stereotype.
Im OK with that too.... occasionally.

So about two years ago (January 2011) I decided I really wanted to re-read the Harry Potter books before the final Deathly Hallows movie came out that fall. I hadn't read any of them since they first came out so I figured it would be a good refresher. My pace was pretty slow thanks to the demands of full time work plus Grad School. By May I had only just begun the 4th book- Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. At the time I was carrying a large Coach tote bag- big enough for my normal everyday stuff, plus school notebooks and a novel of course- I pretty much don't go anywhere without a novel.

But then the robbery happened. My beautiful bag was gone- and with it so was Harry Potter.

Flash Forward December 2012- I finally ordered and received my new copy of the Goblet of Fire. Its so pretty- and makes me want to start re-reading the series over again (I never did finish after the book was stolen along with all my other stuff).

Within 2 or 3 months after everything was taken, It had all been replaced- the tote (although unfortunately not the same pattern), the phone, the GPS, the wallet- and all of its contents, and of course I had my Roxie back- and thoroughly detailed inside and out (even the thought of her having any remnants of that event and those people made me sick).

Except the novel. Why did I wait so long to replace it- when I still desperately wanted to finish re-reading them before the movie??

(FYI- emotional craziness starts now-----)

Maybe because I had everything else back? It was as though on the outside everything was as it had been- as if nothing had happened. But inside (emotionally) everything was different. And seeing that empty spot in my box set of books was a reminder of why I felt the way I did, that something was missing and I didn't have to pretend as if everything was alright.
Or maybe because I needed a reason to bring it up- like an explanation to people about what happened to me and why I act weird in certain situations (as if someone was ever going to open the box set and ask why I was missing book #4). I felt as though that moment in time was now who I was as a person. I was the friend who got robbed- I was the one who people would tell stories of "....Well this one time my friend got held up at gun point in the middle of the afternoon so you should always be careful and known your surroundings....".

So now I have a brand new copy, its nestled firmly between the old ones in the box with the extra cover from my copy folded in-between.
Does that mean Im completely ready to move on now?
Well- probably not completely- Ill still be overly cautious, wake in fear from bumps in the night and have that little moment of terror when someone unknown walks past my car or approaches me in any situation.
But- I think Ive grown past it. I think my life has normalized itself in the past year and a half enough so that I don't need something to tell me that its ok to not feel completely secure. That while I want to talk about certain aspects- in that they pertain to safety, and my feelings (ugh more girly crap), I no longer feel the need to mention to each person Ive met that I was robbed as though it defines me- because I know it doesn't.

And Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire now reminds me of that.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Liebster Award

Holy crap- Someone actually reads my blog!?!

Imagine my surprise when I checked my email this morning to find that I had a comment. Then I logged in (I havent been on in the last two weeks since ive been so crazy busy) and saw this liebster nomination, and that a whole 10 people had viewed my last post!! So exciting.

First I would like to say thank you so much to Manisha one of my lovely Alpha Gam sisters at Hokie, ESQ. for nominating me! Check out her blog- its full of real life insights on Adult life, Being a lawyer and Running, not to mention filled with adorable puppy pictures!

So.... On with the show.

The Liebster award is given by bloggers to up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers. The meaning: Liebster is German and means sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome.


1. Each person posts 11 things about themselves
2. Answer the questions the nominator made for you, and create 10 more questions for the blogs you nominate.
3. Choose nominations and link them to your post.
4. Go to their page and tell them. 

.... (Considering the only people I have on my blog have already done it or been nominated by someone else- 2.B, 3&4 may not get done).

11 facts about me:

1. I am the first person in my family to go to college. (I may have taken this a bit overboard with the two grad school degrees lol).

2. I may be the biggest nerd you know (but i try to hide it somewhat). Im a scientist- with three degrees, who loves science fiction and fantasy more than anything- except maybe science books (I even read Darwin's Origin of Species while on vacation one year for fun). Im incredibly introverted, love helping people understand science and medicine and really do get probably 90% of the technical jokes on Big Bang Theory.

3. I love photography. Its one of very few creative outlets I have. Jess at Being Mrs. Beer even gave me her fancy new DSLR to play with at her recent baby shower because she said I was the one she trusted to get some good shots with it. (Which made me incredibly happy for the trust- and honored to capture the fun!).

4. I lived on a farm until I was 6. Yep- I had every little girls dream- a pasture full of ponies!

5. I am 1/4 Greek and 1/4 Native American and you'd never be able to guess it because I'm pale with blue eyes and don't tan well at all. I even have a separate greek name from my baptism, which is Calliope. 

6. I am absolutely obsessed with black and white. Stripes, Houndstooth, Polka dots, Abstract designs, Clean lines, Lace- doesn't matter. Clothing, Accessories, Decoration, Photography- I love it all.

7. I have a multitude of tattoos. My entire left leg from ankle to knee is covered and I have a large sun on my back. I have one more idea that I really want, but im still figuring out exactly how I want it to look and where to put it.

8. Im a big fan of sportscars and motorcycles. I have one of each- a Volkswagen Eos and a Kawasaki Ninja.

9. I used to bite my nails incessantly. I was always jealous of girls with nice long fingernails. After two years during college of having fake nails- I finally managed to quit and now have real nails! Still can't paint them though because wearing gloves at work makes the polish peel off.

10. I think my brother and I are backwards from the stereotype. He drinks Liquor and Cider, and I drink Beer. (We both love wine).

11. Im someone who always has too many things going on. In high school I was in band and played varsity tennis and ran indoor track, in college I had alpha gam and circle K, I started my job and did two grad school degrees while working, and now Im working and have the long distance relationship thing going on. Ive realized over the years that being so busy has kept me from staying in close contact with friends- yet im still frightened of not having enough stuff to keep me busy all the time especially with the hopefully quickly approaching end to the long distance... It makes me constantly consider doing more schooling- which yes I know is insane.

10 Qs for me:

1. What is your favorite tv show (past or present) and why? My favorite current TV show is Game of Thrones. Ive read the books (well all of the ones that have been written so far) and theyre a perfect fit with my fantasy genre nerdiness. Murder and treachery and Dragons- what could be better? My fav reality show though is Say yes to the dress. I can't help it- so many pretty things (and some ugly ones to make fun of too!). Although I have to say I think I like Bridals by Lori more than Kleinfelds- something about that Southern Charm.

2. What is your ideal/dream vacation spot, expenses be damned? My boyfriend and I keep talking about Singapore. Its absolutely beautiful and clean/safe, not your typical travel destination, a mix of asian cultures and cuisines. Singapore Tourism. I'd also love to go to Greece. The beaches are so beautiful, it looks like the perfect place to relax. Plus considering my family is greek, id love to take in some of the history and culture.

3. Why did you start blogging? I had alot of trouble getting over being robbed, and I felt like no one I knew understood, so I couldnt talk to them about how I was feeling. I assumed that people were just going to tell me- 'its done with and you cant do anything about it, get over it already'. So I decided to write about it. I decided- whether or not anyone ever read my fears, it helped me think about it rationally. Helped me overcome my concerns- as if putting them down on paper made them real so that I could move on to the constructive 'getting over it' phase. I also hoped that other young women might take some of my lessons and learn from them, or that just maybe, other young people dealing with similar circumstances would come across my babbling and it would help them to know theyre not alone.

4. How many different countries have you been to and which was your favorite? Believe it or not- I've never been outside of the country- not even to Mexico, Canada, the Bahamas- or even out into 'international waters'. Sad right!? I know. Its certainly on my list of things to do, hopefully in the near future.

5. What was your favorite part about college/grad school? In college it was football. Whether it was sitting out in a hurricane to watch the Hokies beat up on Texas A&M, Partying with my friends in New Orleans for the sugar bowl (and road tripping down there with Jeserca), Playing football on the drill field in the snow or mud, or taking over Charlottesville last year and teaching those cocky Wahoos a lesson- not to mention the fact that I my boyfriend there, all of my fondest memories at Tech revolve around football.

6. What is #1 on your life bucket list? A family. Im not in a rush to be there my any means, but more than anything I want a happy little family. A house in the country somewhere with a huge porch for BBQing and cocktails when guests come by, and a couple of cute little kids running around and getting into trouble.

7. With which family member are you closest and why? Im actually pretty close with both my parents. My dad wasnt around much when I was a kid, so he seems to see me more as an adult- we can talk about politics and current events and real life practical concerns. My mother on the other hand is the compassionate one. Shes the one who always wants to give me whatever I need, and who I can to about emotional issues. Im sad to say my brother and I are not very close. Hes more introverted than me, and just doesnt share his thoughts or feelings. The only thing we do together is drink and play video games.

8. What food item could you eat for the rest of your life and never get tired of it?? Prosciutto. Smokey, Salty, Hammy goodness. It goes with everything- pizza, vegetables, chicken, steak, potatoes, pasta. Its like Bacon- without the greasyness. Also- Blackberries. Just a handful covered with sugar, in jams, or theyre also amazing in salad with a good balsamic vinegar.

9. What is your favorite movie that you could watch over and over? Pride and Prejudice or Little Women. *cue romantic sigh. The honor, the sacrifice.... The clothes. lol. I love the classics. (My boyfriend also just bought me the whole Jane Austin collection- looking forward to actually reading the stories!).

10. What is your favorite cereal? Crispix! With just a little bit of sugar and milk. Plus you can use it to make puppy chow or christmas trash (or whatever name call it by instead). 

10 Qs for Nominees.... 
OK heres how Im gonna work this.... since I dont have people to nominate. If you come across this and think it would be fun to do- follow my blog and comment on this and Ill follow you and update and link it to your blog here in the nominees category.

1. What is your favorite childhood memory?
2. What do you think is the best part about blogging?
3. What is your favorite place in the US to visit and Why?
4. How did you decide to follow your current career path?
5. If you could get paid to do anything- what would it be and why?
6. What is your signature dish to cook? What makes it so good?
7. What little irrational things worry you most?
8. What is your ultimate dream?
9. What is your favorite book and why?
10. What is your biggest Pet Peeve?

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Thanksgiving (2 weeks early)

What Im Thankful for- 2012 version

Last year I did a post for Thanksgiving about all of the good things in my life because I was too focused on the bad. I was stuck in a rut of focusing on my hurt, pain and fear from the robbery. Ive come  a long way since then, but stress still gets to all of us, and especially around the holidays, I think its a fantastic time to put some serious thought into what we are all thankful for.

Its been a year and a half. Im still nervous when Im home alone, I cant walk through dark places by myself and I only go into DC if Im with people, and usually then only for dinner or hockey games. BUT Im getting better. I sleep through the night and dont jolt at every noise, Im not so skittish when strangers approach me and I can think and talk about it without getting upset.

My family is always there for me still, through everything I know I will always have their support. My cousins wedding was a beautiful success and my little cousin graduated from high school and is going to become a police officer! Grandma turned 80 this year- and although she seems to be picking up a bit of dementia, she is still as kinda and thoughtful as ever.

Work is stressful. But I have a job, and my boss cannot be beat. Im thankful for the opportunity and trust he has given me. For my lovely coworkers who keep me sane, and keep me laughing. And for my passion for learning and science, a field where I will constantly learn new things as they are developing (and actually be one of the people helping to develop those things!).

I have the best friends a girl could ask for. And my holidays will be full of special events and visits with them. Last weekend was a housewarming and deployment party for one of my college roommates and her husband. I also got the see additional college roommates and friends there, as well one of those other college roommate's adorable 2 year old. This weekend is one of my sorority sister's/ former roommate's baby shower! Her and her husband are going to be terrific parents and I am so unbelievably excited about the present I have put together for them and the little one!! (seriously- so excited its killing me that the shower isnt here yet!!).
My holiday schedule is so full Im not sure when Im going to have any down time, but Im so thankful for the good people in my life who want to share these events with me.  The following weekend after the shower is my little 'Nephew's' 3rd Birthday, and then comes and extended weekend for Thanksgiving. Following that I have my roommate's Birthday, then my X-mas party for work, A Free Weekend to rest before Christmas and then New Years! WOW! Its going to be an amazing 2 months.

I wrote the 2011 version of this the day before Thanksgiving. I never could have guessed that my world would be completely turned on its head (in a good way) only 5 days later. That was the day of the VT v. UVA football game. I was invited to go by a friend from college- Who would have guessed that many drinks, a successful skunking of the Cavaliers, a trip over a decorative wall/ almost broken hand later that I would be completely caught up in his older brother. On that Monday before, I would have laughed at the idea of a long distance relationship, but the 26th will be a year since we met and the 29th will be a year since we started talking on the phone every single night. And in that time we will have spent more than 530 hours talking on the phone and skype- when you total everything up thats over 3 full weeks! I am so thankful for him. Hes turned my life around. Im happier than Ive been since.... Ever? Well maybe not- but at least since I was a child and my life was free of the stress of relationships, and I reveled in the love of my family alone. Hell be here for Thanksgiving, My Christmas party, and Christmas, and is looking for jobs here in VA now. I couldnt be happier or more thankful.

Lastly, but certainly not least. I am so thankful for my entry into the Catholic Church. Now I dont want to become one of those crazy religious people- who is constantly quoting scripture and talking to people about God. Thats just not me. But the Church has really gotten me back on track, and being a part of it is thanks to my lovely nagging boyfriend lol. I had alot of baggage from life and relationships, but through the Church, I have found forgiveness. And not just- the priest says your forgiven so you are, But the Real reflection on my mistakes and the true ability through this and confession with a priest to actually forgive myself for those things as well.

Its amazing when you sit there and actually think about it, how much there is to be thankful for. So many things, and not a single one of them is an object. Its all about people and feelings. Sometimes I worry younger generations more and more are not focusing on this, but Im thankful that I can see and experience the beauty in a life lived for people and events instead of for money and goods.

Friday, October 19, 2012

How do you know when its time to Bolt!?

Youre walking gingerly across a road, minding your own business, getting from one place to another when all of a sudden headlights come from around the bend.
Things go wrong quickly, theres danger hurtling towards you and you cant do anything but panic and freeze, caught as a deer in the headlights.

How does your brain know when its time to reengage and get you out of a deadly situation? How do you know when to bolt to the safety of the other side? Or do you tuck tail and run back to whats familiar- even if its not safe either?

Im caught in that frozen state at work. I don't know what to do.

I have absolutely no coverage on my salary from the government to our contractor at the moment. Not only that, but the woman I was working for last year isn't sure how she's going to pay my boss for the time I've already put into her project. And money in the center is tight.
My boss keeps reassuring me- ill still get paid, the center is going to work something out to find me coverage.

Of course- me being miss negative nelly I start panicking.
-What if he cant find me coverage, am i gonna lose my job, or not get paid, or only get paid part of my salary cause I'm only partially covered? Or is he going to take money out of my profit share to pay me?
-Is this because people don't have a lot of funding right now, or does no one want me to work for them? Are they going to find me funding by pushing me onto someone who doesn't want me and then we have an antagonistic work environment?
-What about the government? We have no idea whats going to be cut by either administration depending on who gets elected. Or if they decide to let the time elapse and the sequester occur which could put hundreds of thousands of government works out of a job.-- Which would completely destroy the idea of finding something new- new employees always get cut first.

My boss has always been there for me, personally and professionally. He's said a few unkind things before, but everyone does that once and again and he's done everything he can for me at work, raves about what a good job i've done and sincerely does not want me to leave. And he prides himself on never having to lay off an employee due to funding issues. So do I trust him that things will work out? Or is there a first time for everything?

I'm so frightened at this point. I'm the deer in the headlights- frozen with fear. Fear that if I stay that one day my boss will tell me- sorry I've done all I can but we cant fund you. Fear that I find a terrific new job and it gets taken out in the government budget cuts.

Do I bolt or do I retreat?

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Change of Direction

The boyfriend came to visit weekend before last. It was a nice relaxing time, although we didnt get nearly enough time for just ourselves as I would have liked- but considering how rarely he comes home (this is only the second time this year), I understand that I have to make time for his family and friends as well (sometimes begrudgingly). He is talking about coming home for both Thanksgiving and Christmas though which is very exciting!!- since weve only had New years and Labor day together- no other major holidays or each others birthdays have been spent in the same locale.

The shock of the weekend however came that Sunday morning after church. We went to talk to a couple of his friends and family friends and I heard him telling them over and over again that he was pretty certain that he'd be moving back to Virginia sometime this spring.....

Wait- What!? well that's news to me! Talking to my mother last night on the phone I found out that apparently he gave my father the same impression- that he'd be moving back to VA in the not too distant future. The most he and I had talked about it though was that- if things didnt work out with his current job being able to pay him more then he would look for another job in MI if id found a job out there and he would look around VA as well, and that our long-term goal (meaning 10+ years) was to get back here. Now he's talking about possibly 6 months from now- which is directly in with the timeline he gave his boss.

Then of course last night we had the inevitable conversation- I really really really dont want to move to Michigan. And I had a guy email me about a job out there- but its 2.5 hours away from him. I didnt think it was worth looking into, he did, we didnt argue per se, but the conversation was very direct- and I told him I didnt want to move out there, and knowing that hes been thinking more and more about moving here (where we both really want to be anyway), that I want to give up looking there. He had somehow come to the conclusion that I hate my job- which I dont, I hate what im working on at the moment, but I like my job- of course the notion that I didnt made him question why I wanted to stay here. Long story short. Hes going to talk to his priest and his boss about looking for work and moving back to VA!
All at once I'm excited and feel bad about putting all the pressure on him. I want him here, and I know its what he wants as well, but I feel guilty that I'm the reason he's leaving a job that he loves. (A job that he loves but doesnt pay him enough to even live off- much less help take care of a family-being a huge caveat though).

It is what's best for us, and I know well be happier in VA than we ever could have been in MI. Were just not Northern people. And our families are both here. So were changing direction. Headed home to 'ol Virginia, and when I reach my 6 year anniversary at work in June I will revisit my current employment and figure out whats best for me in relation to where we want to live based on where he finds a job. I feel guilty about it- but I can't say Im not relieved.

Monday, September 24, 2012

The day of surprising emails

Last tuesday apparently was the day for surprises. One maybe good and One ... not completely good. Both kinda shocked me.

(Potentially) Good News first.
I got an email from the professor I've already interview with out at the University of Michigan. His second round of trying to find someone for the position must not have gone so well- insufficient decent applicants or no one held a candle to my experience (I don't know but I like to pretend its the latter!).
He also apparently has come across some additional funding since we last spoke and I had to turn down the job because of salary. He wanted to know if I was still looking (YES), and still interested (YES).
So  I asked what the offer was and he said he'd get back to me by the end of the week or weekend.... here it is Monday and nothing yet. Im waiting impatiently, and trying not to get my hopes up too much- the original offer wasn't too far off from what I wanted, so I've really got my fingers crossed that he makes enough of a jump!

And on to the not so good news.
The first of my college friends to get married.... the ones who have been together for over 12 years married for almost 7 have decided to separate. (Disclaimer- they are apparently in mutual agreement about making this huge step in their lives- he was deployed and they decided they liked their lives better as individuals than together as a couple).
Holy Hell!! I mean I always figured I would eventually have a good friend who got divorced, but Im not even married and my friends have started divorcing already. Its kinda shocking. Especially since they've been together for this long. We talked about it this weekend and they always were very different people, and since they've been together so long they never got the chance to figure out who they were as individuals at an adult stage, so I guess in that way it makes sense....
I guess it just makes me shaky. I absolutely do not ever want to get divorced. I want what every girl wants- true love. Like my parents have- they still flirt and tease and love each other unconditionally (even though they both will complain about small things from time to time- which is completely normal) even after 33 years. I know it won't always be easy- its something I'm absolutely willing to work at though. But seeing friends who I thought loved each other that much say oh no we've decided we don't love each other that way anymore- kinda jars your psyche a bit.

The boyfriend and I base our relationship on love, trust, faith and honesty. We have also been through good and bad relationships as adults which I think helps us a lot in our expectations and knowing how to handle things, but it also means we have a bit more baggage to deal with. I like think were on the right track though. I mean- we have spent over 18.5 days on the phone and Skype over the past 10 months, sent over 4100 text messages and have had too numerous of emails and gmail chats to count. We've got the communication thing down pat- sensitive subjects and all. Next step- doing the same thing in person.... just as soon as a job in Michigan comes through.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Escalation of Crime

Its been a year and almost 3 months since I was robbed. I find myself thinking about it frequently in the past couple of weeks. Maybe thats the two trips to Detroit talking-OR maybe its the increasing frequency of crime in DC.

D.C. police are trying to find out if two late-night attacks in the same Capitol Hill neighborhood are connected.
In both cases, the men were robbed and beaten on North Carolina Avenue SE, near Eastern Market.
The latest incident happened around 2:30 a.m. Tuesday. The victim, who was attacked by two men, was able to walk home and call police.
"It makes me feel very unsafe," said local resident Victoria Rodrigues. "[It's] really insane in this area, the amount of crime that's been happening lately... You assume when you move here that it's a nice area. You can see the Capitol building."
The latest incident occurred just a few blocks from where 29-year-old Thomas Maslin was nearly beaten to death a few weeks ago. Maslin was found on a porch of a house after lying outside for nearly eight hours.
Since the attacks, police increased patrols in the area. Police are also investigating to see if the same men are responsible for both attacks.
Matthew Marriott, 27, told News4's Jackie Bensen he was assaulted and robbed of a cellphone in the fall in broad daylight near Eastern Market. Now he wonders if he should have pushed the matter further when police explained the attack as a gang initiation.
Sounds rather familiar huh!? Marriott's experience rings a bell or three- Mine was just a little worse than  his and the police didnt try to explain it off... Neighbors in the area said nothing of this kind had happened there in 8-10 years- guess that means my robbery was just the beginning of what seems to be an escalation of crime in the area- in both frequency and severity. And this isnt the first time Ive read about increasing crime in DC and especially the Eastern Market neighborhood. It makes me even more glad that I cut and run when I had the chance.
Dealing with these things is never easy. I still sleep with the door to the apartment not just locked but with a latch across it as well and then go to the extra precaution of locking my bedroom door and sleeping with a nightstick under my pillow (oh dear!- the extremes we go to in order to try and feel safe). I think it's my proximity that keeps me in this state of paranoia. Im fine in Orange and in Richmond and even in Southfield (outside of Detroit)... there are other explanations for that- being with family having my boyfriend nearby and being on the 10th floor of an apartment building versus the first respectively- but I still think getting away from DC is a huge factor as well.

.... Now if only I could find a good job in Michigan to get me away from here.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Three of the most important things- Football, Relationships and Sororities- OR my weekend in a nutshell

AH! YAY! Hokie Football started yesterday!! (unfortunately I didnt get to watch cause I was on a plane back to DCA from DTW). But YAY! Fall has definitely become my favorite season over the years (it used to be spring when i was younger). But fall has way better weather, I adore fall colors and college football and lots of holidays coming up! 
When I went to bed last night we were faltering, but when I woke up we had won! 20-17 so obviously it wasnt pretty considering we played GT who is currently unranked, but I dont care. Plus the winner of the VT v GT game has always gone to the conference championship!

The weekend in Michigan was fantastic. Ive really been feeling down recently about not getting to see my boyfriend, especially in the wake of having to refuse the job in Ann Arbor that I was offered. The long distance thing is especially hard when you have no idea when it might end. But we had an absolutely terrific time together as usual, and he will be coming out to VA in just about 3 weeks to visit me (and watch some Hokie Football in DC!).
We had each bought each other presents as well for the heck of it and it was exciting to be able to give each other something in person for a change and see their reaction. He had sent me a movie and some music earlier in the week, but had also gotten me a book to give me in person. Its a collection of Jane Austen novels (because he loves classics and knows I love the movies and have always wanted to read the stories) and was beautifully bound with gilded pages. It ridiculously huge, but I cannot wait to read from it. I got him a monogrammed cigarette case- which he was pretty much enthralled with. I wasnt sure if it was anything he would want/ if it was really practical to use, but he immediately showed it to everyone he knew when we saw them so id say it was a pretty big hit which I was super happy about!

Also, I found out this weekend that I get to be a Pearl Sister for the new Alpha Gamma Delta colonization at the University of South Carolina! I have some friends who have done this before and said it was a fantastic experience and I cannot wait to help the new sisters in any way that I can- even if its just getting them even more excited about this experience! I really havent had the time to do anything with the sorority alumni groups or anything so I am really looking forward to this! And speaking of alumni groups- my former roommate is the new VP for our local one, and now that I have time- and her effort to keep me in the loop about when things are happening, I am going to try to be better about that as well! I really look forward to connecting with more sisters.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Ive been offered a job at the University of Michigan.

BUT. Its at a huge (11K) pay cut. Granted the cost of living is lower out there and the offer is more than I need to maintain my current standard of living.

BUT. My boss says its a big mistake in terms of my career. (WTF why didn't he tell me this when I told him about the interview in the first place!?). On the other hand- its exactly what I want and need in terms of my future- my relationship- which is much more important to me than a job.

BUT. Im told doing research in academia is going to make it harder for me to find jobs outside of that avenue in the future and especially in Michigan where theres not a lot of biotech to begin with. However- the boyfriend and I have been over this many times, we want him to be able to continue his job for as long as is monetarily possible for us as a family.

BUT. Im not sure I want to do this type of research (or any for that matter) for more than a year or two- I like changing projects every few years. I could do it for a couple years and then find something new though.

AND. Im scared to death that nothing else is going to come along thats better for my career in that area and were going to be stuck doing the long-distance thing more long-term. And that he's going to blame me for it if I don't take this job which is perfectly acceptable other than feeling like I'm getting kicked in the gut by taking such a massive pay cut.

Its being portrayed by bother sides (Boyfriend-Relationship/ Boss-Career (whats most important)) as Black or White. I want a career or to be a house-wife, Im sacrificing my relationship because the job isn't right or I'm sacrificing my career for a relationship that I 'think' is right.
I also feel like I'm being talked down to. My boss kept saying things like 'Ive been there through many relationships and thought I was in Love or Lust and would have crawled across glass to be with that person/ you can't sacrifice your career for a boy'. He doesn't understand that I've been there too- Ive had the very fast very hot relationships where I 'knew I was in love that just as quickly fizzled out, Ive had the flings and Ive had the bad relationships that I clung to even though I was being emotionally degraded. I know the difference between all of those and what I have now. The boyfriend on the other hand keeps up the mantra about "you have to figure out what is the most important and let that take precedence which may be at neglect of the other/ we don't have to be rich to be happy". Well thats all well and good- but I don't want to create conflict between us because I'm unhappy about sacrificing my job even though our relationship is technically more important, and I don't want to disadvantage us on the monetary front by taking such huge pay cut either. Money isn't everything- but it sure does destroy a lot of relationships.

What happened to all of those colors between Black and White. (at the risk of sounding like an absolute raging bitch feminist) What ever happened to being able to have a family and a job. Thats what I want. The career that is right for me and will allow me to have and be intimately involved in every aspect of my family's life.
The long-distance thing is really dragging me down, I miss him and am unhappy being so far away from him all the time. I have no motivation for work or even to take care of myself beyond the minimum- I'm sleeping poorly, eating poorly and do nothing to stimulate myself mentally. BUT I don't want to take a job just to be near him if its going to be wrong for me, if its going to make me unhappy.

Unfortunately the money issue and the fear from thinking its a bad career move has been paralyzing to me from actually being able to consider if the job itself is a good fit and would make me happy beyond the relationship aspect. And neither party is being objective about it either way.

Monday, July 23, 2012


SO.... Big News!

Saturday night (~10:10pm) I got an email from a professor at the University of Michigan!! (Yes I agree its kinda rando that he emailed me so late on a Saturday night). BUT OMGosh I'm so excited!

Sometime in early August I will have an interview for a Senior laboratory research position at UofM Medical School doing Molecular Evolution of Viral Pathogenesis research! (in laymans terms- how viruses have developed over time to cause infections). Infectious diseases and diagnostics research has always been some of my favorite- I just find it completely fascinating.

I'm already heading out to Detroit to visit the boyfriend August 9-13th so I told him id be available to meet in person then, but also that We can do a phone interview at any point if he'd prefer to do things that way or as a preliminary chat before meeting when I'm out there. (He's on vacation 'til August 1).

Its been over 5 years since I've had an interview- I'm a little nervous. But at least I have a little time to do my research- I've already printed out his published papers from the last couple years to read through and get a better idea for the type of research he's doing and have good questions to ask- interviewers supposedly love that (plus I'm super interested to find out myself!).
The only other thing I'm nervous about is the money and benefits. I just got a decent raise which also included a jump in my vacation time as well. Luckily cost of living in MI compared with NoVA is like 35% less (but that doesn't mean I'm willing to take a 35% drop in salary obviously- considering I'm not making enough to get by on my own as it is here).
Plus I'd love to be able to buy a house considering how cheap things are out there and I know the boyfriend and I will be there for a good while. AND Ill need money for driving back and forth- the job is in Ann Arbor which is about 50 mins away from his little township outside of Detroit. I have a feeling well both be back and forth a lot. (Which is another thought- Im not so sure how well my Roxie would handle Michigan winters.... a different car might have to be in the works as well).

But enough of worries for now- I just want to be super excited about it for awhile until I find out for sure if I would get the job and what the monetary offer is. So at least I get a couple weeks of excitement! And whether or not this works out- I'm making progress and I'm on the right track!

Friday, July 20, 2012

People have no Tact

I had to post this here because this disturbs me so greatly. No just the incident that happened out in Aurora Colorado, but the complete disregard that those people who have no idea what emotions are involved in such a matter have.

This morning I posted the following on my facebook after seeing what happened overnight. It is a terrible thing, and I feel so deeply for the people involved.

"I get that the media needs to portray how serious things are, but immediately jumping in and labeling something as a massacre does nothing except further damage the people who are dealing with the emotional ramifications of a horrific incident. 
My heart goes out to the people of Aurora CO."

I was greeted a short time later by a nasty message from an acquaintance. (Who's name I will be nice enough to omit- even though I'd like to be a brat and include it).

"What planet are you from? Seriously??? I understand this isnt a School Shooting... but it doesnt make it less important... just saying... think before you speak."

Really!? Thats what you get from what I wrote?! You know me- you know I went to Virginia Tech, you know I lost friends in the shooting in 2007, you know how deeply that has affected me, how deeply it has affected my friends, how every year on the anniversary I mention it, I mention how it can't possibly have been so long ago already, how the wounds are still there, how I still tear up whenever I step foot on campus and cry every time I stand there at the memorial gazing down at stones commemorating the lives of friends and of those I never knew.
The callous disregard people have towards the survivors, towards the families and friends. I am just in complete disbelief. Its easy for people who have never had to face such horror to brush it off or to not feel so heartbroken for those who are dealing with it- but to be so mean-spirited to someone who you know has dealt with these emotions first hand... I just can't get over the lack of compassion.

In case you're interested, I've included my response back to this individual below. I tried to remain calm and not resort to all-out calling them the terrible person they are for what they said, but my hands were certainly shaking while I wrote.

"WTF planet am I from!? WTF planet are you from- you took that completely wrong!
Im not saying its less important because not as many people were killed or because it didnt happen at a school!
Im saying that for the poor people who are dealing with this it creates even greater wounds by the media being so callous, this is emotionally difficult enough for those people without the media treating it like a frekin field day.
Maybe you should think before you speak- Ive actually dealt with this before and maybe know a thing or two about the emotional trauma associated with it."

"Im only saying this because of what I and hundreds of my friends have dealt with in the almost 5.5 years since the shooting happened at Tech. Labeling it as a massacre, and as the worst school shooting in history so that every time theres a shooting anywhere in the country they bring it back up as a point of reference. Or anytime there is an incident of any type/severity of violence its brought back up- constantly reminding us of the horror we went through. The media portrayed and continues to portray terrifying incidents such as this as though they are part of a scary movie playing on TV for the entertainment of everyone that is viewing it from a distance- isolated in time/space or emotion until those not associated are numb to the true violence that happened. They throw around words like massacre and terror without feeling an emotion for those involved because of the sensationalism is causes with TV viewers who have no idea what it is like to be in or know someone involved in one of those situations."

Monday, July 9, 2012

Agony and Ecstasy

Its been over 5 years since I've had to deal with this... and the economy/market certainly hasn't gotten any better in that time (especially in Michigan!). I have this overwhelming fear that I'm going to get stuck in a dead end job or have to take a massive pay cut in order to be able to find work- or that no one will hire me because they don't want to take the effort to bring out someone that lives halfway across the country. Biotech jobs are not exactly commonplace in Michigan.

The boyfriend tells me to have faith. I certainly am trying to, especially considering how the right opportunities have always presented themselves when the time was right in the past (my current job, grad school and of course him) always when the moment was just perfect. Ive added an intention for direction and help in preparing for a finding my next step in life to my nightly prayers. In the mean time Im scouring job boards and agonizing over wanting to be with him. (FYI the 2nd part- Not Helpful!)

In the meantime- My next meeting with Fr.S. is next week.... I think I'm finally gonna bite the bullet and do my confession. Ive been agonizing over it for so long, but after the last meeting we had I feel prepared, reassured and that telling these things aloud and the forgiveness the church offers will finally help me close the door on my past and fully face a bright future.

Speaking of which... the L word is now in the open. We've both been scared to say it too soon and were holding back. We both failed. I can't say I've ever been happier failing at something.
I can see his feelings for me in his eyes and his face and feel it in his touch and his actions. I can't believe what I thought conveyed this affection in the past, it was but a candle against the sun. I feel so blessed to finally know what Love truly is.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

It has begun

Im not announcing this on facebook or anything yet although a few friends know, but I figured im pretty safe writing my own thoughts here since no one reads this anyway.

Ive started looking for/ applying for jobs in Michigan. EEEPPP!

Oh my gosh this is nerve racking.
Will my boss hate me for leaving? Will I be able to find something? Will I find a great job and then the economy gets worse and they have to lay people off? Will I be safe? Will my parents support my decision? Am I really ready for this next stage of my life? (moving indicates marriage and children in the near future). Will I be able to deal with being so far from home- and on top of that a place thats cold? (I hate cold, but seriously the 100 degrees plus humidity in DC this week is definitely a case for moving). Will I have to get a new car? (my Convertible isnt exactly snow-friendly). Will I be able to handle the debt ill likely rack up? (getting married, buying/furnishing a house- likely in the opposite order that I typed).

On the other hand- I am SO excited.
Ill get to see him more than once a month or so. Ive been at my job for 5 years and am so ready for a change and more responsibilities. I really want out of the DC area, and I have very few attachments other than nearby family keeping me here. 35% lower cost of living! Meeting lots of great new people. And seriously, this sexual frustration thing is killing me- I seriously need to get married so I dont have to deal with it anymore! (the only real downside ive found so far of being catholic).

Meanwhile- im headed out there this weekend for his coworker's wedding. I have an amazing dress (3 actually- one for each day ill be there), the ceremony is at his church which is the most beautiful church ive ever attended services at and of course 3 full days with him- dinner and movies, wedding, mass, reception and dancing!, cuddling on the couch, playing pool, swimming. I couldnt think of a better way to spend the time.
And the following weekend Im headed to the Outer Banks of North Carolina with my parents for vacation and then another weekend later he'll be here and we'll be staying on an old farm with all his extended family to celebrate his Grandmother's 80th birthday!
Seeing him twice within a couple weeks is going to spoil me a bit, and definitely going to cement my decision to move.

Monday, May 14, 2012

A forgotten Anniversary

This maybe the only time that forgetting an anniversary is actually a good thing!

May 10th- this past Thursday- was the Anniversary of my robbery. Luckily I was in Richmond- far away from any reminders of the event, and with my boyfriend. I didnt even remember that it was 1 year ago until today. I think this is a pretty big step for me since Ive been dreading it over the past few weeks.

The boy and I went to Maymont park that day. It was beautiful just walking through the gardens together. We were both exhausted from being up late since we went to game 6 of the Capitals V. Rangers NHL semifinals, so it was nice to do something so relaxing just by ourselves. That night we went out with one of his friends and his mom to see the Avengers (Which was awesome- btw!)

Wednesday through Sunday morning we were in Richmond staying with his mother. I even slept in a room with the blinds wide open without waking at every strange sound. I think that really says something about needing supportive people around me and also needing to get out of the city. Its amazing how calm I was every night in Both OC and Ric over the past weeks vacation. A combination of him being here with me and me being more relaxed after getting out of places that always remind me of crime.

Hes back in Detroit now... to my chagrin. I have to survive on phone calls, skype and memories again. Luckily we have alot more wonderful memories from the past week- we fit in so many things- My cousin's wedding (all of my family loved him), the Bmore Aquarium, his brothers baseball games, movies, Hockey, playing Quelf (awesome game- def check it out), quarters and pool, Maymont park, Church, and all of the little moments of just doing everyday little things together. And this time- its less than 2 months til I see him again! :)
And in 12 days an 'anniversary' of a different sort- one that definitely will be remembered. 6 months since I met him in Charlottesville VA at the Virginia Tech/UVA football game.

Monday, April 16, 2012

5 Year Anniversary

This day 5 years ago will forever be implanted in my memories.

I started writing this by reliving my day 5 years ago, but while the feelings and horror of that day are something I will never forget, I do not want to dwell on the evils we all faced, but instead on the people we lost, and my fond memories of times spent with them and what I have learned from this loss over the past 5 years,

Ryan Christopher "Stack" Clark and Michael Steven Pohle Jr. were friends of mine from Virginia Tech. They were both killed in the shooting on April 16th 2007. Their initials now adorn a banner carried by sparrows between Hokie footprints along my left calf.
Stack was a triple major, played in the band, was a resident advisor and an active member of our Circle K club. One of my favorite memories was him and another friend of ours walking between classes together- we all had Molecular Biology together, and then we all had separate classes in the Chem/Physics building afterwards. Wed gossip about relationships, people we saw walking around campus, wed talk about the upcoming/just finished tests from class or about community service projects we were looking forward to. Stack had an infectious laugh, and I can't remember a time when I spent time with him that I wasn't smiling and laughing. Like the time he helped my former roommate iron her pants- She was still wearing them and he stuck the mini ironing board up the pants leg.
Mike was a kind man. Despite the nature of going to a class we all hated, he never failed to say hello to each of us in the group that sat together- in that very same Molecular Biology class I had with Stack. We would talk and make jokes over AIM- about people in class, about the class itself and about the teacher. Ive never really admitted this, but he had a crush on me for awhile as well. He admitted it to me one afternoon when we were chatting online, nothing ever came of it, but I often thought of him afterwards. He loved sports as well. Played Lacrosse for a club team at Tech, and everyone who knew him seemed to like an respect him greatly for the way he treated people on and off the field.

I have heard many great stories about the other lives we lost that day. Although I don't know how much more loss I could have dealt with, sometimes I wish I could have known more of these bright minds that were taken from us.

What I have learned in the past five years, especially considering the events of my robbery, is that we need to face the dark time, we need to think about them- with sorrow and fear, but also with hope and optimism. Ryan and Mike have taught me kindness, courage, dedication, friendship, and charity amongst many other admirable qualities. The Hokie community now lives for the 32 lives we lost that day, we more gallantly support each other because we know what it is to lose- our friends, our families, and our sense of peace and safety. But these terrible acts can never make us lose ourselves, can never cut us off from one another, from love, from community.

We Are Virginia Tech. We will Prevail. We live for 32 and We will neVer forgeT.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Home Sweet Home

For Valentine's day part of the gift from my boyfriend was a couple of CDs filled with country music which we both adore. One of the songs really struck a chord with me. 'Home Sweet Home' by The Farm exemplifies how I feel about my life right now. Its funny cause it fits his situation so perfectly right now as well.

'My world's a roller-coaster and my life's a traffic jam
All this mess ain't even close to bein' who I am
I've been dreamin' Carolina, catchin' craw-dads by the creek
But I'm stuck here in this prison, cell phones and city streets

I need a little time, I need a little space
I need a little gone, a little out of this place
I wanna get back where I can breathe
Where I feel free, yeah

Take me back, I've been away too long
Take me back to my home sweet home'

Anyone whos read any of my posts can obviously tell how much this fits. I HATE living in the city. Maybe its a product of my upbringing living in the country down a gravel road, probably its exacerbated by my fears from the robbery. But I this is I what I really need. To be back in a small country town, where life is a little slower and the stresses of city life abate.

I was in my home town the weekend before last. It was my lovely cousin's bridal shower (Which I of course threw being her Maid of Honor). It went so well, she had a terrific time and got plenty of great gifts. I think her son - my 'nephew' even enjoyed himself.

I was certainly not relaxed by any means, my mother and I had a ton to do to get everything ready, yet somehow I was much more at ease about everything than I am in my city apartment. I didnt worry about checking my surroundings before getting out of my car when we were out shopping, I had no qualms about walking around my parent's yard even though it gets so dark you can barely see the ground youre walking on (I get nervous every morning leaving my apartment for the 20 yard walk between the building and my car). And maybe most importantly, I was able to fall asleep and stay asleep all night. In my apartment every little noise wakes me up- including my roommate and his weird hours- going to bed around 1am. Yet I never heard my father getting up at 4am and getting ready for work, I didnt hear the alarm, him opening and closing doors as he got ready and took stuff out to his truck, or rummaging through the fridge and pantry to get his lunch.
Despite the incredibly uncomfortable twin bed that my parents have in my old room at their house, it was probably the most relaxing night's sleep I've had in ages.

All of this leads me to believe I'm getting better, but moving back to the country might get the process moving on more quickly.

I likely wont do that here in VA, the traffic on I95 would drive me insane, but the more and more I start thinking about the possibility of a move to Michigan, the more and more I think I should find a place to live further out in the country and have a little longer commute. I think it would go a long way to helping my mental health.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Conflicting Feelings

Im so happy its finally April! My 28th birthday is in 11 days, the boyfriend's 29th is in 22 days and he comes home to visit for my cousin's wedding festivities and a week of vacation in 32 days! So Many Countdowns!!

So over the past month/month & a half, we've had a lot of very serious conversations- like where our relationship is headed, religious ideals kinda serious. And last night thanks to a boost of confidence from some Jameson he finally admitted he's falling in Love with me, and has kinda been tossing these feelings around in his head for about a month or so (serious conversations coincidence- doubtful lol).
Can I just say Thank Goodness! Seriously Ive been feeling the same way over the same time period and was just worried about saying something too soon into our relationship. But now its out there, and I couldn't be happier! (yes i kinda cried a little haha).

Also not a coincidence... Ive been considering the inevitable move to Michigan. I cannot wait to see him regularly and just be together like a normal couple, I have no qualms or worries about moving to another state for a boy, because he's not just some boy. I have never felt so safe, so appreciated or so adored by a man other than my Father ever before.

I am however Terrified of:
1. Detroit- A city in the top 25 of most dangerous in the US (compared with DC which I'm petrified of and that doesn't even make the list). I worry about home invasions (again with my jumping to the worst possible scenario)- especially if I was living by myself. He says he's not crazy about the fact that I live with a guy, but I do feel like having a male roommate helps make me feel somewhat safer when I go to bed at night.
2. People- not of them, but meeting new people, making new friends, having friends of my own outside of the people I have met through him. A lot of times I don't feel like I have a close connection with that many people here around DC and I know plenty, Im worried that might be exaggerated by moving to a new place.

and maybe most importantly
3. Job(S)- What if I cannot find a job out there!? Obviously I wouldn't dream of moving til I already had something figured out, but what if I can't find a job? The job market is bad enough everywhere else, with Michigan in a much worse economic state than many other places, I fear that will also contribute negatively. Im also terrified of the idea of settling for a crappy job that I'm either not interested in, or underpaid for just because I can't take the distance anymore. (It is so so hard being so far away from him). Ive only found one job that really interested me and I was pretty well qualified for at this point. (In Ann Arbor- not Detroit which alleviates that worry if I were to work there instead)
I also worry about the state I'd potentially be leaving my current job in. Theres some weird political stuff going on behind the scenes in our center, and while I cannot wait to leave that behind (Because as my boss fully admits I've been pretty much abused by the people at this place over the past 5 years- not my company but the federal clients we work with) I worry about the destabilizing effect that might have on my company's position within the center, and the company in general (Wow I feel very self-centered saying that- but everyone who knows me and what I do at work will admit its completely true). I worry about making sure to stay on great terms with my boss- he's an amazing reference for me, and someone who's shown nothing but confidence in my abilities and been there for me over and over again.-- He's worried about me rushing into things and moving for a boy, and the benefits out company has that id be losing... I know he's just saying these things because he doesn't want to lose his employee, but when he mentioned about the job thing and the benefits, thats what hit me.

So its been an emotional roller coaster. I had a bit of a freak out this afternoon after the discussion with my boss. But even though its scary, I just know things will work out with all of my worries. I know I will find a job that I can excel at, that my boss will support what he knows will make me happy, and that I will have my boyfriend there for me every step of the way.

(I thought talking to my boss was hard... the really difficult part will be having the same talk with my parents!)

Monday, March 12, 2012

Bad News, Good News

Bad News... still too freaked out to walk two blocks and through a parking garage by myself to get back to my car from dinner.
Although I think its the fault of my roommates girlfriend- she posted a link on facebook about crime stats in Arlington- which included multiple things about girls being robbed late at night cause they were walking by themselves.

Good News... I have great friends who are willing to help me through this- by walking with me and not making a big deal out of me inconveniencing them.

More Good News... Despite the deadbolt on our apartment door being broken (which freaked me out more than a bit) and only had the extra little swing latch (like hotels have) closed- I managed to fall asleep both nights without too much worry/trouble (as soon as my neighbors stopped slamming doors that is). AND Its now fixed- so I can stop worrying!

Even Better News... Best weekend Ive had in quite some time. Dinner with some of my favorite girls- who are fellow Hokies and sorority sisters of mine Friday night, amazing Brunch with my the best ever former roommates Sunday- and making tentative plans for brunch/lunch/dinner/drinks/ whatever we can fit into the schedule with both groups for when my favorite dashing news anchor visits from Detroit in May (im pretty excited for my friends to meet him!).

One last comment.... Long distance relationships are miserably hard. I miss him all the time. But every second on the phone or skype lifts my heart in a way that nothing and no-one ever has before. Nothing worth having is ever easy and nothing easy is ever worth having. I survive day to day on the knowledge that this is making our relationship stronger, Ill get to talk to him every evening and Ill see him again soon (Only a month and a half left to go!!).

In the mean time I really should channel my pent up emotional energy into something constructive- like my Thesis. LOL.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Home Alone

Why is it that being at home by myself has always freaked me out?

My roommate has been gone all week- on a business trip. And each successive day this week I have gotten more and more paranoid about someone breaking into our apartment while im there by myself.
I have no trouble coming home in the middle of the day and taking a nap on the couch- but the sun goes down and I get in bed and every little noise- a door closing in the hallway or my upstairs neighbors stomping around in their apartment jars my overactive imagination- and heaven help if I happen to wake up in the middle of the night- itll be an hour before I manage to get back to sleep.

It got so bad last night I seriously considered starting to stay down at my parents house whenever my roommates away.... I even for a moment considered moving back down to my hometown when my lease is up (My parents would love this- I would hate it!). I know both of these options would only perpetuate my fear however and I need to get over it- I need to figure out something so that I stop getting freaked out all of the time.
I keep thinking I should sleep with headphones in or play soft classical music- but then my head interferes and says "no id rather know if something was coming rather than to be suddenly jarred awake by the breaking down of my bedroom door. (Seriously im way too over dramatic). I dont know what to do... luckily my roommate will be home soon and Ill have a little bit of time to mull things over.

Sunday, February 26, 2012


44. According to the boy thats the number of murders that have already occurred in Detroit since ringing in the New Year.... By comparison DC (which we already know I'm deathly afraid of) has only had 12. Now I'm scared for him as well.
He reminds me this is in downtown Detroit, not his little suburban township. Im still scared.

It also makes me worry about what might happen in the future. We've talked about it a little bit. If things are still going as strongly in a years time as they are now, will I move there?
As long as he can do so he can and should continue at his current job. They are providing a wonderful service connecting/informing and keeping up-to-date, Catholics with the truth of their faith. An admirable mission. Heck- Im not even worried about moving halfway across the country for a boy and it not working out. Im worried about life- making a living and being safe while doing so.
I would be giving up my wonderful job with an amazing company. I could not ask or hope for a better boss, and I know the cost-of-living difference between DC and MI would likely mean a drop in my salary. The money thing frightens me especially considering he does not make a lot considering its a religious based organization and a growing but still rather small company. Making a living in a state that is struggling- after living in a place that has pretty much felt almost no effects from the recession is troubling. Plus biotech/defense and national/global security are not exactly priorities for a state thats in the middle of the country. (Unless the Canadians decide to revolt! LOL).
But even more I'm scared of the area in general. Detroit and nearby Flint are both in the top 20 list of most dangerous cities for violent crime in the country based on 2011 statistics. DC is not- yet I'm still frightened of it.

Will I be able to give a new place a fresh start and leave the traumatic experience tied to the location at which it happened? Or will the fall from my ivory tower forever mar my ability to trust- whether its people or places.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Broad Daylight... Sounds familiar

Greetings Community:

Three (3) armed robberies occurred early this morning. In each robbery, the suspect was armed with a handgun:

At approximately 3:11 AM, at Connecticut Avenue and R Street, NW, the complainant reported that while walking down the street he was approached by the suspect, who was armed with a handgun and demanded money from the complainant. The complainant complied by giving the suspect currency. The suspect fled on foot.

No physical injury to the complainant. The suspect has been described as a black male, 20’s, 6’02, medium build wearing a grey jacket with a hood pulled over his head.

At approximately 6:08 AM, at 20th and N Street, NW, the complainant reported that while walking down the street he was approached by the suspect, who was armed with a handgun and demanded money from the complainant. The complainant complied by giving the suspect currency. The suspect fled the scene on foot. No physical injury to the complainant. The suspect has been described as a black male, 25-35, 5’09, and average/medium build wearing a black jacket and red shirt.

At approximately 6:11 AM, at 16th and M Street, NW, the complainant reported that while walking down the street he was approached by the suspect, who was armed with a handgun and demanded money from the complainant. The complainant complied by giving the suspect currency. The suspect fled the scene on foot. No physical injury to the complainant. The suspect has been described as a black male, 30-355, 5’09-5’11, and thin/slender build wearing an orange shirt and green pants.

MPD Detectives are investigating the similarity of the latter two robberies.

Please be mindful of your surroundings and call 911 if you notice any suspicious person(s).

As if I needed additional reasons to be frightened about going to class... Campus is located between 17th and 18th on Massachusetts Ave.- within blocks. I used to walk down 17th or 18th past M & N between 8-10:30pm to get to the metro back about a year ago when I was still living in Fairfax and metroing to class seemed an OK thing to do.

I also keep thinking- what would have happened if these people didnt have any cash on them!? I rarely ever carry cash- and when I do its only $10-20 so I can pay for lunch, dinner and parking. Im already scared of my surroundings, afraid of people, and especially men- and terrified of black men. It doesnt help that people can conceal anything in the baggy winter clothing that we all have to wear right now because of the weather, and that these things are happening at peak times when there should be quite a few people out and about heading to work.... That was one thing I always told myself when I was going to class- its ok because there are a ton of people around- no ones going to do anything with so many witnesses... well apparently that was a misconception.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

New Year. New Attitude

Im moving on... at least I'm trying.

I still wake up occasionally in the night and freak out over small sounds like another door on our hallway slamming closed, my roommate going to bed at 1am or a car alarm going off outside my window. I still sleep with a police baton under my pillow and I still double check every lock and the bathroom and my closet before I lay down to go to bed.

But I also have a new nightly routine which has given me some sense of security. Each night before I go to bed I say a litany of prayers. In the past it has helped me in dire times and my realization has been that I should not leave it only to those instances. Each night I pray for help from God.

Safety, Understanding, Direction, Patience, Love, Faith, Truth and Forgiveness.

Things I now realize I should be thinking about on a daily basis.

My other nightly routine is an hour of sleep and then an hour or so on the phone. With the man in Detroit (not from... he hates being associated with the state of Michigan lol). Were up to 2 months and up to almost 3 days worth of phone time and over 2200 text messages. Thank goodness for friends & family on cell phone plans!
Maybe its just because its late and I'm tired, but I prefer to think that our nightly phone calls help to calm me down before going back to bed. Im always happy and feel warm and safe when I'm on the phone with him and that continues past when we say goodnight and I roll over to sleep. Im getting less sleep each night than I was before I met him, yet I have never felt as tired the next morning as I sometimes did getting a full night sleep before... Maybe its because I sleep more deeply because I need the smaller amount of sleep I'm getting, but I like to think of it as being able to do so because I have someone to protect me.... even from hundreds of miles away, the sense of peace and kindness in my mind after our conversations goes a long way in helping ease my mind.

In other (related) news... my cousin's wedding is the first weekend of May. I was already very excited for it because Im her Maid of Honor (I have an amazing dress) and Im very happy for her and can't wait to help make her day very special.
But now I'm even more overwhelmingly excited! He's coming for the wedding and the whole week after!! (some of that time will be spent with his family who also live here in VA, and I'm going to take off of work). Were both very excited to spend some more time together.

Im starting to believe in the power of prayer guiding me where I am supposed to be in life AND the old saying that the year is a reflection of your NYE. Mine was amazing and so far, the year keeps getting better and better.